It seems after you reach a certain number of downvotes (at least on meta), you lose the ability to post. Why?

I also wonder if the algorithm is taking into consideration if the downvotes were spread among several posts or if a single post got many downvotes or if the reason is even considered. If this is a dummy automated algorithm, it needs to be revised.


I also wanted to add that there needs to be a distinction between poor posts and posts (proposed ideas or complaints) which garner a lot of disagreements, hence downvotes. People here tend to downvote something they don't agree with, regardless of the quality of the post. Also some tend to follow the herd. The more a post gets downvotes, the stronger the temptation to downvote it even further by the next visitors.

Also note that meta has a 'discussion' tag. No not every answer or comment here is an answer. This differentiates meta from the rest of the SE sites.

  • 1
    @Makoto No it's not a duplicate. I remember the reason was specifically about downvotes. Aug 12 '13 at 3:29
  • Are you speaking from personal experience? I can only imagine you'd be triggering the ban based on the questions you've posted, and not answers, and yet here you are with a new question. So I'm confused. Aug 12 '13 at 3:30
  • @Michael yes about me. I contacted them about this and they said something about deleting old posts which recalculated something. Yes it's most probably about my questions since that's what's triggering the downvotes. Aug 12 '13 at 3:32
  • Because of the strong differences with voting on meta I don't think this is a duplicate of the "what can I do" link Aug 12 '13 at 8:10

This doesn't happen very often on Meta, as the thresholds are much higher than they are on the main site. When it does happen it's usually due to several controversial feature requests or discussions that resulted in folks indicating through down votes that they:

  • Don't want such a feature or behavior
  • Feel the premise of a discussion alludes to a feature or behavior they don't want, or was invalid or irrelevant to begin with
  • Felt that you were probably just out for some lulz

The third item, however uncommon, is a problem that we face. We don't want anyone that genuinely cares about this community being blocked from participating, no matter how unpopular your thoughts and ideas might be. If you are that person and find yourself blocked here, contact us and let us know. Be prepared, however, for a short discussion on how you might be able to avoid such a block in the future.

To this end we ask that folks vote their conscience, but be mindful that heavily down voting things like support requests can put a new user just trying to learn the ropes in danger of being blocked, and in many cases we simply just never hear from them again. That's a bit of a shame.

This is my own personal opinion - I think our meta site UI could be changed to lend better guidance to how voting should work on Meta, but that's a rather deep subject. For now, if you get snagged when you probably shouldn't have, get in touch with us.

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    Be prepared, however, for a short discussion ... You guys give post ban counselling too?
    – asheeshr
    Aug 12 '13 at 6:55
  • Maybe for new users, the ban on meta should yield a "We are currently reviewing your posts so far, since they seem to have encountered a lot of community opposition" and indeed review that user's post for trolling or merely low-quality suggestions. Or maybe on meta a ban should be based purely on flags/close votes Aug 19 '13 at 7:15

It's a bit unclear what you're asking. But yes, the same algorithm that drives question and answer bans on all other Stack Exchange sites, drives question and answer bans on Meta. The difference is, the threshold is much higher on Meta. Generally, on Stack Overflow, you can expect to be banned if a small handful your posts are in the negative, if you're a new user. You get more on Meta, a lot more in my experience. But the basic algorithm is the same.

If you're asking why this is, well, given how freely downvotes (and upvotes!) are handed out on Meta, I'd expect more lenience here. At some point, though, the community needs to act in self-defense, to block abusive users and trolls. I'm thinking specifically of one rather famous user, and not you.


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