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I'm posting this question motivated by the following fact. I'm rather new to exchange sites, I signed in because I needed an answer in Cross-Validated site.

I posted my question, mpiktas answered and my reputation grew significantly. There where no comments, no editing. Just one question and one answer and some votes.

Since then I've been posting several answers of this sort. I'm not an expert in many topics in statistics but I have some experience. All of this time my reputation has grown very slowly which made me wonder: Does asking questions is more efficient to increase reputation? Let me phrase it again, does a good question increases reputation more that a good answer?

On the other hand, there seems to be zillions of unanswered questions. Is that because the incentives to asking a question are higher than those for answering?

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2 Answers 2

Answering questions gives more reputation (when upvoted) than asking questions. You can check the FAQ to see that you get 10 points for an answer upvote, but only 5 for a question upvote. This is the same across all sites, except for the Meta sites. On most Meta sites you don't gain or lose reputation. This one is the only exception. Here question upvotes are worth 10 points, since this is the place to report bugs, support issues, and feature requests, which are as valuable as answers.

See also: How does “Reputation” work?

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3  
not to mention that you get 15 points for an accepted answer vs 2 for accepting an answer. –  Yads Mar 1 '11 at 20:29

On the other hand, there seems to be zillions of unanswered questions. Is that because the incentives to asking a question are higher than those for answering?

As Bill and Yads pointed out there are higher incentives for answering than asking.

The reason there are unanswered questions is simply that no one (whose seen the question) has an answer.

If I see an unanswered question I read it, possibly do some research (if I have the time) and if I know or can find an answer post it. If I can't it usually means that I don't know the answer or don't have enough time to research the problem. I suspect this is true for other answerers.

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