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I have recently had two questions involving a Telerik product voted down. Telerik namespace not found in deployed MVC3 application, and Very odd event behaviour for onChange on Telerik MVC DatePicker. I see nothing wrong with the questions and the only thing they have in common is that they are both tagged Telerik, a not too uncommon tag on SO. What is with this kind of behaviour? Is Microsoft one of the elite vendors that questions about their products are OK, but other vendors not?

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Why do you think Microsoft has anything to do with it? – Joachim Sauer Jul 15 '11 at 11:12
I see nothing wrong with your two questions (except maybe the lack of upvotes on any answers, which I find ... suprising). – Joachim Sauer Jul 15 '11 at 11:15
The questions were downvoted without comments, which I agree is always annoying. (You could mention that in this question) – MarkJ Jul 15 '11 at 11:29
People down-vote for all sorts of reasons. Maybe they just thought that the questions weren't "useful or clear" or that the OP hadn't done enough research (as per the tooltip). – ChrisF Jul 15 '11 at 11:33
@Joachim, nowhere did I say I think Microsoft have anything to do with it. It just seems to me that questions about MS products don't get downvoted while those for other vendors do, hence the perceived reverence shown to MS by other SO users. – ProfK Jul 26 '11 at 11:39
@ProfK: now I understand what you mean. I'm sorry, but that meaning wasn't clear from your post. – Joachim Sauer Jul 26 '11 at 11:40
up vote 25 down vote accepted

You got one downvote... This is not suspicious behavior, and it does not indicate any type of "trend". There is no Microsoft-led conspiracy against Telerik or any other products/companies.

People can choose to downvote questions for whatever reasons they choose. The entire meaning of a downvote is expressed in the tooltip that you'll see if you hover over the arrow. It says:

This question does not show any research effort; it is unclear or not useful.

And since downvotes are merely an expression of the personal feelings or opinions of the user who casts them, one can only assume from the examples that you've shown us that someone out there thought that your questions were "unclear" and/or "not useful". (I don't think research effort is the problem here, but who knows? Personally, I think the questions are fine and wouldn't have downvoted them, if that helps.)

So no, there's nothing wrong with either behavior—your questions or the downvote they each received.

What there is something wrong with is your comment. This one:

Ah, a driveby downvote by someone too cowardly to leave a comment.

Downvotes are anonymous for a reason. To attempt to label people who choose to retain that anonymity as "cowards" is quite offensive. There is no guaranteed relationship between downvotes and comments. They are left at the sole discretion of the downvoting user; you can leave negative comments without downvoting just as you can downvote without leaving comments. There's nothing wrong with either.

There is something wrong with calling the users who choose to do so "cowards", although it does highlight quite nicely why it is important that downvotes remain anonymous. In particular, the likelihood of retaliation. Here you are on Meta complaining about a single downvote (albeit to two different questions) and calling the user who cast that downvote a "coward". Imagine what you'd do if you knew who it was!

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*note, the comment was flagged and I removed it. – Won't Jul 15 '11 at 14:07
@Cody, all I would do if I knew who it was, was afford them a bit more respect. My complaint stems from the time frame I received a downvote on two questions with Telerik in common, giving me the impression that the voter found the content of those two questions less important than the voter's dislike of the product being asked about. – ProfK Jul 26 '11 at 11:42
@ProfK: Or maybe they found the content of those questions less than impressive. Assuming it has anything to do with the control libraries that you choose to use seems more than a bit absurd to me. I fail to see how anything that's happened here could corroborate the notion that you'd be interested in affording anyone who downvoted the questions in question any more respect. – Cody Gray Jul 26 '11 at 12:20

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