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I asked a question on SO in late March (unable to bind event to datetimepicker plugin). Today, a month and a half later, it received a downvote.

I don't like to ask questions. (That is, so far, my only question outside of meta.) I will only ask a question on SO as a last resort, when I think I've exhausted all my options. I clearly outlined what the problem was, what I had attempted, and showed code examples. When no one answered it initially, I posted a bounty and eventually received a very good answer.

Now, I suppose the question could be considered too localised (although it relates to a popular plugin and I'm sure others have run into this difficulty), so I'm willing to delete it for the sake of not losing my two reputation points.

However, I am concerned about the consequences of deleting the post. Will the user who answered the question lose 85 points awarded him (2 upvotes, selected, and bounty)? Will I lose points and/or badges?

Is the question poor quality and thus should be deleted? Or should I just live with the downvote and leave the question as is?

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"I'm willing to delete it for the sake of not losing my two reputation points" ... how about improving it to gain reputation instead? –  Bart May 17 '13 at 15:00
    
Can you suggest improvements? I was very conscientious of trying to state the question clearly, to explain what I've tried and failed with, and to show my code. I'm willing to listen to suggestions, though. –  Derek Henderson May 17 '13 at 15:05
    
The question and the answer both have upvotes. It's unlikely that the system will allow you to delete the post anyway. –  Robert Harvey May 17 '13 at 15:27
    
"I don't like to ask questions." -- that changed, it seems ;-) –  Arjan Aug 6 '13 at 11:51
    
@Arjan, checking up on me? ;) I'd hardly say 7 questions in 8 months is a lot, and I only ask a question if I can't find an answer somewhere on the web first. I still don't particularly like asking questions! ;) –  Derek Henderson Aug 6 '13 at 14:18
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4 Answers

I strongly recommend you treat down-votes with a grain of salt. People down-vote for all kinds of reasons and not all of them have to do with the quality of your post.

Losing 2 rep is really nothing. What does your rep on this site really mean? On the other hand, deleting a question can much more heavily contribute toward a question ban, so you really need to take that into consideration. The ability to have a rep of x and the ability to ask questions at all are in different stratospheres, IMHO. Lots of details on the question ban here.

If you do manage to get a moderator to delete the question (as outlined by the other answers you can't do this yourself right now), your rep is reversed as is the rep for any answers - so it does not affect just you. IIRC this will not affect badges or bounties.

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I didn't realise there was a question ban. Thanks. That would, indeed, be far worse than losing 2 rep points! –  Derek Henderson May 17 '13 at 15:04
    
FWIW, I wouldn't bother going to the trouble of asking a moderator to delete the question. I do think it (or the answer it solicited) could potentially be of use to someone. Clearly, though, someone didn't agree. I didn't know I couldn't delete posts with +2 answers (interestingly, that second upvote appeared right after I posted this question!), but I'm not that keen to delete it. Just wanted to know the consequences. –  Derek Henderson May 17 '13 at 15:09
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Well, the problem is, you have no idea whether someone agreed or didn't agree. Just because the tooltip explains why an upvote or downvote should occur does not mean users are bound to that motivation. Someone might have not liked your avatar or wasn't crazy about the formatting or was paying you back for a comment you made a month ago. Who knows. –  Aaron Bertrand May 17 '13 at 15:12
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Oscillation @AaronBertrand, don't rule out oscillation. –  Bart May 17 '13 at 15:17
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You can't and shouldn't delete this question, it has an upvoted answer. A single downvote is not a good reason to delete a question.

The only reason to delete an answered question is if the presence of that question and its answers won't help anyone else or might even mislead them. For example, if the question and its answers became completely obsolete, or if the problem was caused by some problem in your setup that nobody else is likely to run into, deletion would be justified. In such cases you can flag for a mod to delete the question even if you can't due to upvoted answers.

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Deletion (should) happen in the following circumstances:

  • The question is closed
  • No effort has been made to resolve the reasons why the question was closed
  • The question is not useful for future visitors
  • No answers are useful to future visitors

All of those criteria should be met in order to delete a question.

In your case, your question can't be deleted by you because there's an answer with upvotes, nor would I as a moderator delete your question if you asked me to.

Your only recourse is to hope the community will delete it for you.

You would lose any reputation gained from the question. You wouldn't lose any badges, but you wouldn't be eligible for any more badges of the same variety until you met all the criteria for that badge with undeleted posts.

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You couldn't delete the post even if you wanted to. You could only delete your question if there were no answers that had a positive score. Since there is an answer with a score of +2 it doesn't meet those criteria.

Were the post to be deleted by a moderator, or through sufficient votes from community members with enough reputation, then all reputation changes as a result of voting or accepted answers on that post would be reversed unless the post had net score of at least 3 and visible for at least 60 days. The bounty reputation would be unchanged.

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