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Why does reputation have a lower bound of 1?

Imagine I'm new to Stack Overflow and I create a new question that receives 10 downvotes. That means I should lose 10 x 2 reputation points.

Since a user starts with 1 rep on SO, I understand I would have -19 rep. Is this so, or can a user's reputation never go below 0?

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marked as duplicate by Jon Seigel, perbert, juan, ChrisF, John Rudy Apr 27 '10 at 20:09

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.

Related:… – Gnoupi Apr 27 '10 at 19:57
Related:… – Jon Seigel Apr 27 '10 at 19:58
@Jon - truly impressive. – Gnoupi Apr 27 '10 at 19:59
@Jon - that's why we should have negative rep :) – user27414 Apr 27 '10 at 20:05
@jon, stop feeding him, trolls feed on attention – juan Apr 27 '10 at 20:07
(@comment notification fail, wanted to alert the other @jon, @seigel?) – juan Apr 27 '10 at 20:43
@Dow: I know. ...but "if it gets a laugh, leave it in." :D – Jon Seigel Apr 27 '10 at 20:58

Reputation indeed never goes below 1. But the reputation graph history can. Here's an example.

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Note also that his total official rep is greater than one in spite of everything. – Pops Apr 27 '10 at 20:06

Reputation never goes below 1, no matter how much you're downvoted.

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