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This question already has an answer here:

W.K.T, when a user got a downvote for his posts before getting any reputations will not get any negative reputations.

So, after getting positive reputations, the user should get his penalty(-2) since his/her reputations can get substracted to get a positive number.

But, it doesn't happen like that in SO. for ex, take this question, it got 3 downvotes and 3 upvotes and see the user's reputations.

Is this an issue or the fact of SO.

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marked as duplicate by Josh Caswell, hims056, Toon Krijthe, Rory, Shawn Chin Feb 11 '13 at 9:17

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

It's by design. – J. Steen Feb 11 '13 at 7:04
@JoshCaswell Good find. The title and wording made it fairly difficult to find, for me. Not quite a duplicate IMHO though (it handles the "user at 1 rep, gets downvote, what happens"-case), even if one of the answers would answer this. =) – J. Steen Feb 11 '13 at 7:11
@J.Steen: I just happened to remember having seen something like this before. – Josh Caswell Feb 11 '13 at 7:13
@JoshCaswell That seems to be the case with most duplicate-identifications. Meta users are rather... active, I find. =) – J. Steen Feb 11 '13 at 7:14
@J.Steen: The last time I tried to escape, they gave me the hose. :p – Josh Caswell Feb 11 '13 at 7:17
up vote 5 down vote accepted

You can only lose reputation that you've first gained, so you first need to gain reputation. Everything, with some exceptions, happens according to a timeline.

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