This is a follow-up of a two-year old question regarding serial upvoting.

serial upvoting

I just got 4 consecutive upvotes in 4 seconds.
Yesterday, I have seen two other instances of 4 and 5 consecutive upvotes (in less than 5 seconds).

Each time, the answers upvoted are simply my last (unrelated) answers, taken in order, and upvoted without meaningful reason. In 4 seconds.

I still don't understand why serial up or down voting is allowed, while there is a mandatory delay on comment upvoting.
I understand, from this question "Why is there a 5 seconds limit for voting on comments, but not for voting on answers?", that setting a delay between each vote isn't popular.


  • if you serial up or down vote more than five answers, those votes will be rescinded the next morning
    (strangely enough, those upvotes are just below that threshold)
  • I don't know anymore if my answers have been upvoted because they are helpful, or because of some automated process.
  • Quickly upvoting several answers within one question makes sense.
    Doing the same for unrelated answers from different questions doesn't.

I would simply mention this here to make clear that:

  • I have nothing to do with those votes (i.e. I don't have a sock puppet account ;) )
  • I receive between 40 to 60 votes every day, so I wouldn't care if those votes were to be cancelled.
  • I still believe that a small mandatory delay between each vote (for different questions) would be useful.
    But I don't pretend this is the only valid solution (or that it is even a "solution"), and I am interested in what you think about this situation.

Update next day (April 6th):

April 6th serial upvote

Again, those are just my 5 last answers, taken in order, and upvoted every 2 seconds.
Somebody is playing with an automated process and/or API calls.
And I am not amused.

Update (April 8th)

serial upvote 8th April

As usual: the last 5 answers are upvoted.

Update (April 21th)

enter image description here

As usual, last five answer, in order, upvoted in 11 seconds.

Could this account be deleted already?

  • 5
    "I have nothing to do with those votes" Sure, when it's your answers receiving the votes :P Apr 5, 2013 at 13:13
  • 9
    Quick! Everyone upvote VonC's answers, and let's see who can get the best time! Apr 5, 2013 at 13:15
  • @BoltClock'saUnicorn What I mean is that I don't have a sock puppet account which would do those upvotes ;)
    – VonC
    Apr 5, 2013 at 13:15
  • 5
    What benefit would come from an delay of 5 seconds for every vote? A 5 second delayed serial upvoting.
    – juergen d
    Apr 5, 2013 at 13:15
  • 1
    @juergend if it is a manual serial upvoting, that becomes more annoying to do I presume. Same reasoning as for comments I suppose.
    – VonC
    Apr 5, 2013 at 13:16
  • @RichardJ.RossIII I keep clicking refresh on my answer tabs... Still no upvote! What are you guys waiting for?
    – VonC
    Apr 5, 2013 at 13:17
  • 1
    @VonC It won't let us, we get this error: Sorry, but we are no longer receiving votes from this account. Apr 5, 2013 at 13:18
  • I serial upvoted when I wanted to get my Vox Populi badge :)
    – hjpotter92
    Apr 5, 2013 at 14:25
  • @hjpotter92 oh, that's sneaky ;) How many upvote did you cast in one batch? Were there invalidated the next morning?
    – VonC
    Apr 5, 2013 at 14:28
  • Nope, all of them still exist. Probably will be removed; now that I have mentioned it :P
    – hjpotter92
    Apr 5, 2013 at 14:32

2 Answers 2


A 5 second delay would not do all that much to slow down a serial voter, and a much longer delay would also impact regular voting patterns. While I wouldn't oppose a small delay, I also don't see it doing much good.

Serial voting is much easier dealt with if there are many votes, so making it harder for the serial voters to vote a lot is not really helping. The way to deal with serial voting is vote invalidation and if necessary, suspensions. Rate-limiting does not help.

  • I agree. What I find worrisome here is that those automatic upvotes are multiple occurrences of 4 to 5 upvotes, each time below the threshold of invalidation.
    – VonC
    Apr 5, 2013 at 13:26
  • @VonC What makes you think that 4-5 votes in groups repeated over and over isn't going to trigger invalidation?
    – Servy
    Apr 5, 2013 at 14:02
  • 1
    @Servy because those upvotes from yesterday were not invalidated this morning. In my old question, they were invalidated first thing the very next morning (but it was about 10 to 20 serial upvotes back then).
    – VonC
    Apr 5, 2013 at 14:03

The problem is not the delay in voting. Serial upvoters would take that few seconds to vote. But many users would be unsatisfied to wait for placing some regular votes in a short period of time. It is the same for comments. Many complain about that delay.

The problem is the serial voting detection algorithm. It should be enhanced to notice if a user votes on different posts of a single user in very short time, even if it is just 4 or 5 votes.

  • I agree too. Contrary to my old questions, this time the upvotes are grouped together as to not trigger the invalidation.
    – VonC
    Apr 5, 2013 at 13:27
  • 3
    I don't agree it is the same issue as comments. It is quite easy to be able to read and try and upvote multiple comments and hit the time limit in the course of normal activities. Upvoting multiple answers on different questions within 2 seconds is not something I would normally hit and is surely indicative that votes aren't being cast with consideration for the content. Apr 5, 2013 at 13:28
  • @MartinSmith "and is surely indicative that votes aren't being cast with consideration for the content.": exactly! I am not sure of the right solution though...
    – VonC
    Apr 5, 2013 at 14:02

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