So various posts, such as What can I do if I'm the victim of serial downvoting? suggest that there is a script that detects serial downvoting.

Over the course of a few minutes, 36 of my questions and answers were downvoted (and it seems that the process is still going on)

How many downvotes are needed to trigger the serial downvoting logic?

I wish I were making this up

  • 4
    Far fewer than 36 will trigger the detection (assuming they're by the same user, of course). Give it a day or two, and come back if you're not made whole by then. Oct 1, 2011 at 4:26
  • @MichaelPetrotta is the detection script run daily or at lower frequency?
    – Foo Bah
    Oct 1, 2011 at 4:28
  • 4
    Daily is what I understand. Oct 1, 2011 at 4:30
  • I'm sort of amazed anyone thought 36 downvotes wouldn't be noticed as abuse, even if there was no automatic method to address the problem. I hope you at least get some pity upvotes out of this :)
    – agf
    Oct 1, 2011 at 4:47
  • @agf I wish i were making this up -- posted a screenshot because its absolutely hilarious
    – Foo Bah
    Oct 1, 2011 at 4:50
  • 4
    Originally voted down because the answer to this seemed entirely obvious. Reversed now because I would freak out if I saw that on my rep tab even though the total amount of rep isn't that much.
    – agf
    Oct 1, 2011 at 5:00
  • 3
    @agf I take pity on the type of person who would actually go through and downvote more than two questions ...
    – Foo Bah
    Oct 1, 2011 at 5:04
  • 3
    Moderators can see suspicious voting and, if I'm not mistaken, even some details, like how many times users voted one another. If you have a high suspicion about who downvoted you, then maybe you can ask a moderator to have a look. Just an automatic reversal without a message from a moderator doesn't seem satisfying to me in this case.
    – Arjan
    Oct 1, 2011 at 8:03
  • @sbi who do you think was responsible for this?
    – Foo Bah
    Oct 6, 2011 at 15:30
  • @FooBah - indeed, what a sad practice Apr 29, 2012 at 18:23

2 Answers 2


36 is more than enough (the actual number needed hasn't been revealed), but it is run on some kind of schedule so you might want to give it more time.

  • "the actual number needed hasn't been revealed" <-- is that the case because people would game the system if it was revealed?
    – Foo Bah
    Oct 1, 2011 at 4:27
  • 8
    exactly, then they'd go downvote up to that limit. Oct 1, 2011 at 4:28
  • Do you know how frequently the detection script is run? Is it daily or at lower frequency?
    – Foo Bah
    Oct 1, 2011 at 4:29
  • No idea on the frequency. Oct 1, 2011 at 4:30
  • There has been no official word on when the fraud script runs. I was serial-downvoted a few months ago and I vaguely recall the rep being returned before midnight GMT.
    – Charles
    Oct 1, 2011 at 5:52
  • So it appears that the downvotes were finally removed ...
    – Foo Bah
    Oct 2, 2011 at 3:02

It looks like the downvotes have been detected and rolled back and the offending user has been dealt with accordingly.

  • They still show up (its on stackoverflow) as of 9:03 AM Eastern Time
    – Foo Bah
    Oct 1, 2011 at 13:03
  • @FooBah Ah ok...I was looking at the graph. Just wait 24hrs or so and they'll be nullified. I had the same thing two or three weeks back (6 serial downvotes) and they were all cancelled out around 24hrs later.
    – Kev
    Oct 1, 2011 at 13:12
  • I tried to remove the status-completed tag but it says only moderators can do that ...
    – Foo Bah
    Oct 1, 2011 at 13:23
  • @Kev, no need for Naming & Shaming here, but: has the offending user indeed been notified, or was that an assumption? Or is that even part of the automated "undo" nowadays?
    – Arjan
    Oct 1, 2011 at 13:45
  • @Arjan - that's a human process.
    – Kev
    Oct 1, 2011 at 13:49
  • 1
    ...still curious: was that done in this case? (If you can tell, but I think that diamond gives you Super Powers, @Kev!)
    – Arjan
    Oct 1, 2011 at 13:53
  • 1
    It's starting to happen again, so I really want to know who is downvoting!
    – Foo Bah
    Oct 1, 2011 at 18:58
  • @Arjan - sorry, can't really say much more other than appropriate action was take and the wheels are back on the wagon again.
    – Kev
    Oct 2, 2011 at 15:09
  • 2
    @Kev Can “appropriate action” ever mean anything more than merely reversing the downvotes once detected? I ask because I just got hit with a buttload of them. This happens to me now and then (can’t imagine why :), but this time seems worse than the routine hate-spree.
    – tchrist
    May 10, 2012 at 23:47

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