I think it would be very useful.

I have a question that I have an open bounty on. Putting up said bounty brought my reputation below the point where I am allowed to comment on other peoples' posts. It's so frustrating not to be able to comment and give feedback on the answers given!

Especially since it would be helpful, for them, me, and the readers, to know particularly what is good and isn't good about their answer, and therefore give some better guidelines to future answerers on how they can win the bounty.

  • 1
    really, did you not think of keeping at least some basic rep? You know, thea association bonus is there for a reason Aug 8, 2013 at 5:04
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    I think @Jan was kind of joking here. That's an excellent idea in my opinion, amazed it wasn't suggested before. As long as you have active bounty on a question, it should be considered as yours in terms of being able to comment regardless of reputation and getting notifications, which is already implemented. Aug 8, 2013 at 7:14
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    An interesting idea, but also kind of a corner case. There must be other things it would be more fruitful to put hours into right now. Assign this a (very) low priority and put it on the back burner for six to eight weeks. Aug 8, 2013 at 18:35
  • @dmckee Six to eight weeks is up, and as I noted in another comment on this page, the situation is not necessarily such a corner case. I agree with Shadow Wizard that there should be a special case to allow commenting anytime (and for as long as) you have an active bounty. Nov 8, 2017 at 17:52
  • @GlennSlayden Hmmm ... "six to eight weeks" is kind of a joke around here. I still think this is a good idea, but I have no idea what other good ideas are on the team's to-do list. Nov 9, 2017 at 2:14
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    This was requested again in 2015 and has an official response (a sad one, but nonetheless official): Allow bounty owners to comment on questions they've placed a bounty on, even if they have less than 50 reputation Oct 1, 2022 at 2:31
  • 1
    ... and again two years later: meta.stackexchange.com/q/300197/282094
    – Rob
    Oct 1, 2022 at 4:19

2 Answers 2


I agree this is a problem, but let's admit something, it will probably occur very rarely.

The real problem is "someone had a privilege and lost it without doing anything wrong" which doesn't sound fair at all.

My opinion is, there should be a fix for this if (and only if) they fix the complete issue, because it is not worth fixing this small-never-happening-again-issue alone.

Some ideas to fix it all can be:

  • store somwhere the highest reputation and use this as a reference
  • prevent dropping below X reputation
  • 5
    It can't be a simple as storing the high-water mark, because you should totally lose privs from downvotes, offensive flags, and spamming when you lose the rep. Bounties may be the one case where your "virtual rep" shouldn't factor in the "real rep" reduction. Aug 8, 2013 at 21:53
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    Just commenting here to highlight that "this... will occur less than 20 times in the next 100 years" is a patently false sentiment. In fact I imagine this is not at all uncommon, given the plethora of SE communities that abound, and the grant of free rep to trusted users. Jul 17, 2016 at 3:27
  • 19 more times to go
    – Ishamael
    Dec 5, 2016 at 22:24
  • 1
    When looking in the privelege page of bounties, it even informs you any privilege will be lost, so you should've taken a good look before using bounty.
    – devRicher
    Dec 14, 2016 at 15:45
  • "It will probably occur very rarely." Yes, doesn't happen very often for people to pay all their reputation for a bounty on a very important question. But it should be possible to figure out exactly how many times this happened. Can anybody from Stackexchange provide some numbers?
    – aleb
    Sep 15, 2017 at 19:16
  • @aleb I would guess that the problem happens most (and quite) commonly in the situation where it happened to me--and which I describe here--namely, that someone just joined a site for the purpose of granting a bounty, which then (inadvertently?) consumes their site-joining bonus entirely. Nov 8, 2017 at 17:47

Not having the required 50 rep for the privilege of commenting still allows commenting our own posts (and the answers of our own questions).

This exemption obviously should be extended for the rare cases, as the question is not ours, but we have an (active or inactive) bounty on it.

My arguments:


The rationale that rep<50 users can't comment everywhere, is that first we have to produce something, and only after should start chit-chat. The few ones reached 75, and then started a bounty on others question, have produced something already.


Another reason, why rep<50 users can comment the answers of their own questions, is that so they can request clarifications from the answerers. These clarifications can play a significant role in the decision, which answer do they finally accept.

The same rationale similarly exist, if the question is not ours, but we want to request clarifications, which can play a significant role in the decision, to who do we want to give the bounty.

A possible workaround for the problem:

As you have at least 25 rep after the bounty, you still have access to chatrooms. Thus:

  • Start a chat in a new room, or in a relevant room about the bounty
  • and put its link into the bounty notice, or in a comment below the question (before starting the bounty).
  • It would be so good to know, who voted this answer down, and what does he think..
    – peterh
    Sep 12, 2017 at 18:03

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