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This question already has an answer here:

I am a bit confused about the points a user can gain on this website.

There are many users who have points like e.g. 250

And many users who have points like e.g 15k

So can you please explain the difference between these points values?

marked as duplicate by Danubian Sailor, Martijn Pieters, Shadow, James, hims056 Feb 18 '14 at 16:30

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    See the duplicate but in a nutshell: good questions and answers earns points, users with 15k (aka 15,000) reputation will have a lot more good answers and questions than a user with 250 – Richard Tingle Feb 18 '14 at 13:37
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    @psubsee2003 I think the OP's question is why we sometimes see a "k" in someone's reputation value. In that case, the question is not a duplicate of "How does Reputation work". – S.L. Barth Feb 18 '14 at 13:37
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    @S.L.Barth ok, I can see that interpretation, didn't read like that when I read it initially. – psubsee2003 Feb 18 '14 at 13:41
  • ... just clicking a number with the "K" would have loaded the user profile page, which in turn would provide a quicker answer. It is just a way to shorten the number. – SPArchaeologist-様 Feb 18 '14 at 14:02
  • k stands for 1000. 15k -> 15000 points. – Martijn Pieters Feb 18 '14 at 14:09
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How is reputation earned

For a detailed explanation see How does "Reputation" work? but broadly reputation is earned for receiving upvotes on questions/answers and for approved suggested edits.

What's the whole 'k' thing about

k is shorthand for 1000, so a user with 15k reputation has 15,000 reputation (note that rounding can occur)

So my reputation as displayed here is 15.5k, so 15.5*1000=15,500 (although my true reputation is 15,503).

This is necessary to fit the reputation of some users into the space available. Some users have as much as 650,000 reputation and this has to be truncated somehow. The same applies for question/answer score/views and anywhere else where large numbers exist.

In extreme cases "m" will be used for millions, as Shadow Wizard points out this can be seen on the 'all sites' information screen. So far this hasn't been needed for any users reputation, but it won't be long.

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    worth to mention there also exists an "m" for millions it's visible here for example in all Stack Overflow parameters. – Shadow Feb 18 '14 at 14:00
  • @ShadowWizard g, t, p too? – devnull Feb 18 '14 at 14:08
  • @devnull not yet, give Skeet few years and he'll have 1p rep though. – Shadow Feb 18 '14 at 14:09
  • @ShadowWizard Yes, I know. Skeet, the legend. – devnull Feb 18 '14 at 14:11

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