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Some people on this question Provide a way to embed videos in answers mentioned that my 0% acceptance rate on meta.stackoverflow was "offensive" and that I was "dismissing the relevance of the site" where people spend "time and energy answering questions".

That certainly wasn't my intention, I just thought reputation didn't matter to anyone on the meta sites and that it only was important on the real sites, where I of course keep my acceptance rates at a natural 80-90%. I thought the meta sites were just a way to throw ideas around and that the same software as the real sites was used simply because it was easy to copy and turned out to be more useful than uservoice.

I thought I remember Jeff Atwood mentioning on a podcast that the meta sites were "a much harsher place" in terms of reputation since people tended to vote questions up and down vigourously simply to indicate if they were a good idea or not, but not to indicate that it the question itself was a bad question.

And questions like these seem to support the view that reputation on meta sites shouldn't matter: Don't calculate accepted answer rate on meta

And as far as I know reputation on meta sites isn't reported anywhere publicly like on flare graphics, right?

So do the majority of people care about reputation on meta sites or not?

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Actually MSO reputation is shown on Flair. Site specific MSE sites doesn't have it shown. MSO is still a separate beast from the rest, and the culture here has grown over time, as the site was always treated independently with it's own set of rules. –  Diago Oct 6 '10 at 13:24
    
Hm, the usual Meta voting paradigm is vague here... +1 just for asking a good question. –  Pops Oct 6 '10 at 13:43
    
@Diago although it should become relevant for Area 51 –  Tobias Kienzler Oct 6 '10 at 13:50

5 Answers 5

We should probably suppress accept rate percentage display on per-site metas, I think.

I'll put it on my list.

Right under your kiss.

edit: this is checked in and will be deployed soon but only applies to per-site metas. Eg you will still see accept rate here on Meta SO.

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I'm leery of 0% accept rates on the actual Q&A sites, but on a meta site, the accept rate probably shouldn't even appear at all. Consider that every question must be tagged with either:

  • [discussion] - means by definition that there may not be a "correct" or "best" answer.

  • [bug] - which the only sensible answer to accept would be a bugfix message. If it doesn't get fixed, there's nothing to accept.

  • [feature-request] - which the only sensible answer to accept would be an explanation of the new feature or a message saying that it was implemented. As with bugs, if it's not implemented, then there's nothing to accept.

  • [support] - this is the only type of question for which an accepted answer makes sense.

So, no, it's not bad etiquette to have a 0% accept rate on meta - it's expected unless you ask a lot of support questions. And since reputation doesn't formally exist on Stack Exchange meta sites (it's derived from the parent site, unlike MSO which is separate), there is no reason for anyone to care about that metric because having your answer accepted doesn't give you any benefit.

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Is it bad etiquette to have a 0% accept rate on meta stackexchange sites?

No. Many, many Meta questions are not "closed" or even ever "closeable" (e.g. open feature requests and such). Not accepting an answer to those is perfectly fine.

Also, the accept rate as a metric is relevant on SO proper because accepting an answer is 1.) a service to the community's question base and 2.) as a thank you to the answerer. Except for factual "Where can I do X?" types of questions, both things are much, much less relevant on Meta.

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Those comments don't make sense to me. Reputation on Meta is more an indication of your participation in discussions than anything else. People that provide their opinion a lot tend to have lots of Meta rep. Even if your point of view is generally unpopular, you will still inexorably accrue Meta rep, as long as at least 20% of the voting population casts in your favour.

So it doesn't make much sense to think about Meta reputation as an objective measure of very much, because your reputation on Meta is overwhelmingly tied to how much the rest of the Meta community concurs with the opinions you share.

On meta sites other than meta.stackoverflow.com, you don't even have meta reputation, reinforcing the notion that it is essentially irrelevant.

With regard to accept rate, Tobias has summed it up well. Who cares whether the questioner 'agrees' with me, the answerer, or not? You asked a question, or raised a discussion. It's irrelevant who you feel is 'right'. The community benefits from the discussion, and the voting. So why should anyone care whether the question-asker has 'accepted' some number of answers or not?

The only situation where accepting an answer has value is where an unambiguous "how do I?/why is this?" is asked, or where someone official has responded, for example to implement a feature request. In these situations there may be some value to the acceptance for future readers.

In my opinion, the main value of the StackExchange platform on meta sites is to allow the community viewpoint to come through via the voting mechanism. The reputation, and the acceptance rate, are irrelevant.

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Meta is Meta, why should your accept rate be relevant here? I don't think so. Sometimes there is an answer explaining a [status-decline] on a [feature-request] that makes perfectly sense, or a short explanation about a [bug], but what should be the correct answer on a [discussion]? I don't care about accept rate at meta. (In fact, I don't care about it anywhere, although 0% makes me at least have a look at other questions asked by that user before investing time in an answer. But not on meta)

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