After you try to vote on a post that was last edited X hours ago, you get the following message:

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There is an unfair workaround - You can make a trivial edit to the post, then vote again on it.

While trivial edits shouldn't be encouraged, they still give you the ability to vote whenever you want on whatever you want, which can not fair sometimes.

Why it is designed that way? Shouldn't this be changed? I mean, shouldn't it be an error if you try to change your vote after editing someone's else post just because you want to change your vote?

  • This is know issue, yes, one we don't really care all that much about. Feb 11, 2014 at 16:05
  • @MartijnPieters I didn't find a related topic, can you please link me to some?
    – Maroun
    Feb 11, 2014 at 16:05
  • 1
    I don't think this is the same thing I'm talking about. I'm talking about a scenario where you edit someone's post to change your vote.
    – Maroun
    Feb 11, 2014 at 16:07
  • It's in the same category. This one then: Locked votes can be changed by editing a post Feb 11, 2014 at 16:10
  • @MartijnPieters - Odd that this question has 3 upvotes and the last one you linked to has 3 downvotes.
    – Ted Hopp
    Feb 11, 2014 at 16:26
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    @TedHopp: such is the influence of tone on voting behaviour. :-) Feb 11, 2014 at 16:28

2 Answers 2


I agree in the sense that I don't think it is ethical for a person to edit someones question/answer that they have already voted on, just so they are able to change or remove their vote. If a person feels like they made the wrong vote after going back and re-reading a question/answer, then they should just chalk it up to a lesson learned, and be more careful with their votes.

Also, I think you get locked out a lot sooner than 4 hours. I believe I've had that message pop after like 13 minutes before. So I think somewhere between after 5 - 30 minutes you are locked out from changing your vote , unless the post is edited.

So with that said, I do not think this is an issue, since SE sites are "professional" sites, and have a pretty high quality of members. I have not run into this problem once. It is a scarey world out there, but it's best not to worry about things like this that occur very, very infrequently.

  • 2
    I want to say the actual lock-out time is either 10 or 15 (I'm pretty sure it's a multiple of 5). If I can find a post that says for sure, I'll add it here. Feb 11, 2014 at 17:19

I have changed my mind before on whether an answer is good or not, particularly after having gained some experience on the subject and realizing that the answer that sounds good might actually be a very bad idea. (By the way, the timeout is way less than 4 hours -- votes are frozen within a couple of minutes.)

Frankly, i'm glad there's a bug that allows me to make my vote more accurately reflect my opinion. I'd prefer that votes not be locked in at all, but it's enough for me that there's a way to fix them.

(With that said, i might have used it a dozen times in my time on SO.)

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