Say someone gets a Mortarboard due to serial up-voting. I know that badges can't be reversed. But, votes can. This case is somewhat interesting and I'm curious. Today (over Physics.SE), this user got a load of up-votes. In fact, we were discussing about the upvoter & the reversing scheme (see the whole transcript). Within a few minutes, the guy cleverly used this 200 rep. to offer a bounty over this question

What I'm wondering is: The engine has recorded the pattern of votes. It will definitely do the reversing. Now, this guy only has 25 rep. The minimum rep. score that a SE user can have is 1. So, the score can't go negative (neither zero).

So to be clear, what would happen tomorrow? Can the system be cheated this way?

To future viewers: The problem has been resolved and the bounty has been revoked. See his profile. I think the rule has been implemented that Bounty shouldn't be awarded if one experiences serial upvoting

  • Barring moderator intervention, the votes would get reversed and the user will get a "rep change" entry in his history. – Mysticial May 25 '13 at 17:48
  • @Mysticial: So, you agree with me. OP loses only 25 rep..! Let's see tomorrow ;-) – Waffle's Crazy Peanut May 25 '13 at 17:51
  • Add this in transcript: chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/71/conversation/nonagon – ABC May 25 '13 at 17:51
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    Correct, the OP's rep used for the bounty is essentially free. – Mysticial May 25 '13 at 17:53
  • This little thing caught my eye. :D – hjpotter92 May 25 '13 at 17:57
  • @hjpotter92: Yep... Well, we can't understand that big-number. Actually, I can't digest that -1049..! Any questions explaining that? :D – Waffle's Crazy Peanut May 25 '13 at 18:04
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    This situation has been brought to the attention of the team. Human intervention will be necessary to prevent the system being gamed in this way. – dmckee --- ex-moderator kitten May 25 '13 at 18:06
  • so he has two accounts or his friend upvoted him... – Anoop Vaidya May 25 '13 at 18:47
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    Pffft physicists... always looking to bend the rules of the system. – slugster May 26 '13 at 3:48
  • @slugster: Hah..! Declared as "physicist" before completing my undergrad course :P – Waffle's Crazy Peanut May 26 '13 at 3:51

When a deletion or a reversal event causes a bounty to make a user's rep go negative, a "rep change" event is added to the user's history to "give" the user enough rep to place the bounty.

So barring moderator intervention, the upvotes will be reversed and a "rep change" event will be registered to give the user enough rep to leave him with 1 rep after the bounty.

In such a case, yes the rep used for the bounty is essentially free.

  • I don't quite agree with your last line. Poor guy doesn't know whether some cruel scheme like serial-upvoting actually exist in SE..! Moreover, he's a new user... Mystical - Be merciful. BTW, I'll select this answer based on tomorrow's result ;-) – Waffle's Crazy Peanut May 25 '13 at 18:06
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    That's kinda what mod messages are for - to give the user a polite warning that some behavior isn't allowed. – Mysticial May 25 '13 at 18:08
  • Mod messages are totally Okay. But, Isn't suspension cruel for a newbie..? Anyways, it's totally upto the team. I'll check it out tomorrow..! ;-) – Waffle's Crazy Peanut May 25 '13 at 18:10
  • @ϚѓăʑɏβµԂԃϔ: No. also when newbie was himself once interested in it.chat.stackexchange.com/transcript/message/9477267#9477267 – ABC May 25 '13 at 18:12
  • @007: Like I've said already, if he really wants to, he should include it in the about-me ;-) – Waffle's Crazy Peanut May 25 '13 at 18:13
  • Us non-mods don't know if this is truely a new user. If it not the first time, then a suspension is possible. That said I'm not a mod so I don't know what the policies are. – Mysticial May 25 '13 at 18:13
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    @Mysticial: BTW, non-mods can check out the user profile. It shows 33 days. Isn't that a good evidence for new user? – Waffle's Crazy Peanut May 25 '13 at 18:18
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    I hate to sound negative but non-mods can't tell if a user has other accounts. I'm not trying to imply that's the case here, but I'm just suggesting another possibility. – Mysticial May 25 '13 at 18:25
  • @Mysticial: Ahh... I see your point. BTW, You being a non-mod had actually guessed the truth ;-) – Waffle's Crazy Peanut May 26 '13 at 4:49
  • @ϚѓăʑɏβµԂԃϔ I've seen enough of these cases where I can instantly identify them with a low chance of false-positive. But nevertheless, I usually hesitate to jump to conclusions since I can't see anywhere near as much information as mods can. :) – Mysticial May 26 '13 at 4:55

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