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How many votes does it take to trigger the vote abuse filter? I ask because I just got 3 downvotes on three different answers at roughly the same time (on SO). Artfully enough they all came on my answers that were already negative. I suppose if you're going to downvote something, you might as well downvote the things that are bad.

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I got suddenly 4 downvotes for question, which were not under zero. These were my first 4 downvotes in history. System didn't do anything. – LukLed Feb 19 '10 at 20:49
this falls under the SOFU don't-ask-won't-tell policy. don't ask, cause they won't tell. (i'm pretty sure it's also a duplicate several times over.) – quack quixote Feb 19 '10 at 21:01
<sarcasm> Today has just been bad for my rep. I'm going home. </sarcasm> – C. Ross Feb 19 '10 at 21:10
Heyyy, it's Beer:30! – squillman Feb 19 '10 at 21:27

Jeff hasn't given details of the algorithm (because detailing anti-abuse measures is an invitation to circumvent them), but I'd imagine it takes a lot more than three votes to trigger it.

And why is it bad to downvote bad answers, anyway? Why would that be considered abuse?

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Downvoting bad questions is one thing. Downvoting a specific user's bad posts means you're targeting the user, not the post. – Adam Davis Feb 19 '10 at 20:53
If I got them on three different days, I wouldn't care. I have to admit I think it might have been a way of trying to avoid the filter. – C. Ross Feb 19 '10 at 20:59
@Pollyanna: No, that doesn't follow. Searching through posts by user is just another form of post selection. If you search for all posts tagged fortran, and downvote the bad ones, is that abuse? What if the bad ones are all by the same user? Why does SO make it easy to look at a user's post history, if you're not meant to vote on those posts? Abuse means downvoting answers that don't warrant them, with the intention of harming the reputation of the user. It's far from clear that this is the intention here. – ire_and_curses Feb 19 '10 at 21:01

How many votes does it take to trigger the vote abuse filter?

It's unlikely that you are going to get an exact answer to this question. and they may not even answer the real question:

I just got three downvotes that are suspicious - will this trigger the vote-fraud detector, or must I contact a moderator?

Regardless, please flag one of the questions that was downvoted for moderator attention and note the situation so a moderator can take a look at it.

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