Possible Duplicate:
See Who is Upvoting/ Downvoting My Question/Answer
Why was I downvoted?

Is it possible to find why my post has been down voted? One can avoid making the same mistake if the reason for down voting is given.

And is this down voting an anonymous activity?

I am getting lots of down votes for asking a question about down vote. [confused]. May I know what mistake I've made in my post?

Based on the comments

We have a mechanism that requires a summary for the edits we make on other's posts. And everyone can see the complete log of all the edits. I think this helps lot of users to understand the best ways of formatting.

Wont having a mechanism like this for down votes make it more systematic and helpful for those who wish to correct their mistakes?

  • post help your quest.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/118097/…
    – 4b0
    Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 5:27
  • 1
    The downvotes here are because people don't agree with your idea of finding why the post is voted down. Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 6:40
  • @ShaWizDowArd Thanks.
    – Ivin
    Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 7:14
  • 7
    Actually, I think these downvotes are also for "a lack of research effort". Afterall, this is well covered. Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 7:19
  • 2
    On second though I take that duplicate back, my bad. Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 7:34
  • @ShaWizDowArd disagreement with idea of finding why the post is voted down - sounds like a way to discourage those willing to improve
    – gnat
    Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 7:50
  • @UnicornifiedBobby Yes lack of research effort needs to be downvoted.I totally agree. But there are situations when the OP hits dead end and he/she has nothing much to do other than seek help. Is downvoting such users a good thing? That too, without leaving any helpful answer or comment as to give a hint on the issue.
    – Ivin
    Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 8:43
  • @gnat might be so, but to solve this we need to have the system explain more clearly how to ask questions - we can't have people explain each and every downvote they cast. Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 8:49
  • @ShaWizDowArd well I think this is covered in duplicate you proposed. My issue is with meta users downvoting this question, especially when it started to sound as disagreement with idea of finding why the post is voted down, finding how it can be improved. As if people find research of what's wrong in someone's question bad idea :)
    – gnat
    Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 9:12
  • 1
    @gnat agree that Meta users are too trigger happy sometimes, but guess that's just the way thing are.. Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 9:48
  • 2
    @gnat: I find some users are to happy to tell people that it is for disagreement instead of a bad question (not blaming you there or anything, just saying). I downvoted because we've got a ton of such questions and another ton of help, manuals and FAQs laying around...as addition that this question is way too broad to be useful. Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 10:05
  • 1
    @UnicornifiedBobby agree. I for one find it OK to tell when question is bad / lacks research effort as you pointed (or to downvote silently)
    – gnat
    Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 10:09
  • @gnat: I'm applying a simple rule: Feature-Request/Bug, assume disagreement. Everything else, see tooltip. Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 10:44

2 Answers 2


Yes, downvoting is anonymous (as well as upvoting). You may ask why in a comment, but there's no guarantee the downvoter will respond.

I think after some time using the site, and maybe some reading on Meta, you just get what the common reasons for downvoting are. And there are several possible reasons, from an actual problem with your question, to another user having a bad day.

  • If i put a comment asking the reason why i was down voted, would that person be notified i've posted a comment? I thought comments are notified only to the users that are specified as @username.
    – Ivin
    Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 5:38
  • 5
    There is no way to notify down-voters, or up-voters.
    – apaderno
    Commented Sep 12, 2012 at 6:13

Downvoting is an anonymous activity. It doesn't cost any reputation loss for the downvoter (downvoting answers cost one reputation loss for downvoter).

So, when the other users find anything irrelevant or mistakes in the question, they downvote the post, just to make the original poster realize that the post needs some consideration and modifications.

Most of the downvoter doesn't provide any reason for downvoting, as it is the duty of the OP to make the post syntactically correct.

Moreover, there is no special trick to find out why the post has been downvoted. As there could not be a single reason for downvoting the post, every downvoter has their own opinion, that even is impossible for the community to catch.

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