I just saw this question/answer combo on Workplace.SE:

Should I raise concerns about a co-worker possibly leaving?

...In the past few weeks Joe has taken a few unplanned half days off... I suspect he was interviewing... I already mentioned it to my direct manager...

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One of the comments on this answer posed the question "I wonder what is the most downvoted accepted answer in Stack Exchange history?" - and I thought that was a pretty interesting question. It got me wondering what variety of reasons there are why people would accept an answer that goes so strongly against the community consensus.

What is the most downvoted accepted answer? And is there any way to get a list of accepted answers across the network with scores below, say, -10, ranked by lowest to highest score?

Edit: just saw in the same comments that someone has started a query on this, but it seems to not be specific to accepted answers and seems to be only for The Workplace: https://data.stackexchange.com/workplace/query/36658/most-down-voted-answers#resultSets


3 Answers 3


In history, one would likely have to go with Why use try … finally without a catch clause? at -65 (-63 at the time it was unaccepted). Note that while it is not accepted currently, the timeline shows that on September 15th of 2013 this answer was unaccepted. Since then it only got two more down votes and has been locked to prevent unnecessary additional down votes and deletion (the magnitude of its wrongness can serve as a 'this answer is really wrong' with additional material in comments - don't want overzealous 20ks or the user to delete it).

The question still ranks very high (low?) on the network wide 'lowest scoring answers outside of meta' (Stack Overflow has one at -45 - MSO has one at -121, and one at -243, MSE has one at -82, one at -161, and one at -204... but none of those are accepted).


You can actually do this with a simple search query:

isaccepted:1 votes:..-10

That will find all answers which are the accepted answer with a score of -10 or lower. You can then sort by votes and go to the last page to find the most downvoted one of the bunch.

As far as finding the most downvoted in all of Stack Exchange, I'm not aware of any cross-site database query that you can run.


Now that we can do a cross-database search, the answer reveals itself pretty quickly.

It's hard to imagine anyone will ever top this one.


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