Cross site moderation
If you're a moderator that should send shivers down your spine. Thought finding sock puppets and voting rings was bad enough? Now you have 100 sites on which your voting ring could be centered. In theory it can be easy to find if someone gives bounties in exchange for upvotes on one site. But what if Bob gives Alice a bounty on UX for upvotes on Stack Overflow? As a UX mod, all I see is the UX bounty. Seems legit, I'd never think anything of it.
This would require new, cross site mod tools. Which should be scary for all sorts of reasons; now you're querying 100 databases (we get rate limited enough in the mod tools thanks), potentially having to investigate crap on sites you're not a mod on, it's a mess and all for incredibly little gain.
Bounties meant something in my day
When I see a bounty, someone with rep on that site set that bounty. Rep is a rough measure, but usually that means when someone sets a bounty on UX, they did it because it's a good UX question. I really don't want to start seeing people cast 50 rep bounties on every single "design my interface" question because they have more rep on SO than they could give away in a billion years. The barrier to entry is useful. Bounties are supposed to hurt, if I can give away rep from a site I don't care about or a site I have far too much rep on I can just spam rep on anything for any reason, give it to friends, whatever. I'm not going to use my extra 8k MSO rep anyway
Oh god the rules
The obvious solution is to lock this feature down tight. A rule here, two rules there, some rate limits in the back, some mod tools in the truck. But at what cost? Seriously, if you have to add a dozen rules to a feature before it gets released your feature needs major justification, much more than "wouldn't it be cool". Given the suggestions for rules so far this tool sounds like it would:
- Be very frustrating to use and have multiple rules you need to know if you use it more than once
- Not actually prevent much abuse because cross-site moderation would be a nightmare even in the case of a single abusive bounty
So no, I think this is a really bad idea which needs to be propped up by lots of really bad rules for amazingly little gain. Let's just keep rep separate, keep bounties meaningful and relevant, and not give moderators massive cross site bounty rings to deal with all for the sake of bountying "how can I make pasta as a programmer".