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Question: Is there a way a user can increase their reputation level by carrying out menial labor operations such as correcting spelling errors or adding footnotes or the like?

Rationale: It would be nice if truly non-expert noobs could earn reputation on a site by helping out with this kind of thing, even if it were just to earn enough reputation to upvote/downvote, with a maximum ceiling so you could not use this to gain a reputation greater than say 200 points.

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Huh. I worked hard to gain enough rep so that I could correct spelling errors and add footnotes.

Guess ya just never know what'll appeal to some folks...

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Just helping ya out there. oh the irony... – Troggy Dec 5 '09 at 0:06
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These days that feels like all I do on SO. Except when I vote to close. – John Rudy Dec 5 '09 at 0:38

You can earn badges (well a badge ) for editing, but that privilege only comes at 100 rep for community wiki and 2000 rep for other people's posts. You have to show that you're a responsible member of the community before you're let loose with editing powers. See the faq.

It's far easier to earn reputation just by answering and (to a certain extent) by asking questions.

Don't be afraid to add an answer to a question that's already got a few existing answers, you may just provide that extra bit of information the OP needs. If you do there's a potential 25 points of rep right there.

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On SO, it takes 750 rep to edit CW posts. – mmyers Dec 5 '09 at 19:03
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@mmyers - your info is out of date - check the faq. stackoverflow.com/faq – ChrisF Dec 5 '09 at 19:33
    
Well, so it is. Have an upvote for showing me something new. – mmyers Dec 7 '09 at 15:27

I've had a much better time/rep return from asking questions over on SU, so a "non expert noob" can gain rep, AND stop becoming a non-expert, all at the same time! Perfect!

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I think asking and answering questions is the way. If you're willing to have a go of it on Saturday or Sunday you can pick up some really easy questions and gets some rep for them without getting 'Skeeted'.

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This is an interesting idea. I think that it is in line with the idea of the system trusting those users that participate in a constructive way. Of course, there is a reason that you need to earn the trust of the system before being allowed to edit (and how could the system tell if you are fixing spelling errors in a constructive way, or vandalizing answers?)

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