Background: There have previously been questions aimed at changing the downvote tooltips on Meta, or asking why people here downvote as well as explaining how votes are different from Stack Overflow. All of them touch on the fact that voting on Meta is, admittedly, different. However, when a user asks a question on Meta and then receives downvotes, there is often a flurry of "why was this downvoted!??" comments, like
Who is down voting and why? Please be courteous enough to state a reason specially when the question is asked with humility. In addition to that, the question itself seeks to align better with SE ethics. You are simply discouraging people like me to be a part of this community. – Raheel Khan 1 hour ago
to which other users will usually say something like:
Welcome to Meta! On this site, downvotes don't necessarily mean you've asked a bad question. In this specific case, the downvotes probably indicate that the voters think soliciting professional consultation after the fact is not appropriate. – Popular Demand 1 hour ago
Of the most recent questions, other examples of this interaction are on Can I replace an old question by editing it?, Why did my question here on Meta SO get so heavily downvoted?, and a query on comments found yet another question on interesting questions, What to do with my questions which have not been solved? and I'm feeling a bit of harassment on my questions, can I block people from my questions? among others.
Proposal: Similar to the automatic comment which is generated for a vote to close something as a duplicate, I propose having an anonymous automatic comment when the first downvote event is triggered for a given user. It could link to the FAQ, and perhaps say something like this:
Welcome to Meta! On this site, downvotes don't necessarily mean you've asked a bad question.
Instead of being left automatically by the user who voted, it could be attributed to the Community user.
In this way, new users are specifically linked to the FAQ (which, arguably, they should have read anyway) without being "turned off" by the downvotes which occur quite often on Meta. It also gently redirects them to the FAQ as a whole, which might nudge them to read it and ascertain a better understanding of the site.