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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, jmfsg, 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.

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Related: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/2621/… –  Gnoupi Apr 27 '10 at 19:57
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Related: meta.stackoverflow.com/users/… –  Jon Seigel Apr 27 '10 at 19:58
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@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
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@jon, stop feeding him, trolls feed on attention –  jmfsg Apr 27 '10 at 20:07
    
(@comment notification fail, wanted to alert the other @jon, @seigel?) –  jmfsg 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
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2 Answers

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

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