A few days ago, I noticed that a user on a certain SE site I use had gained about 200 reputation over the course of about a day. I was a little surprised, because this user had (before that) about 25 reputation, and had been posting poor questions and answers. I checked the reputation tab on the user's profile and discovered that the user had received about 200 reputation within a short time (besides +100 for an association bonus received for passing the 200-rep mark). In total, the user gained 235 reputation that day, because s/he received a -50 for "serial upvoting reversed". Now, there was a pattern in the upvotes: 2-3 upvotes for each of the user's questions and answers, and it was all done within a matter of minutes.

I'm not convinced that the user gained only 50 rep through serial upvoting; I think s/he gained about 200 through it (plus 100 for the association bonus, so nearly 300 total). I have nothing to back me up, so I posted it on the site's meta. Regardless of the result of this specific case, this worries me. How do I know that serial upvoting has been fully reversed?

Note: I'm choosing not to list the site nor the user because it's not directly relevant to the question.

Update: I flagged one of the user's posts for mod attention (giving the reason for the flag), and the serial upvoting appears to have been fully reversed.

  • 7
    We can't know that. Flag one of his posts and explain your suspicion, moderator will take a look and might find something wrong and act. (they have tools to detect socks and such) Commented Nov 7, 2014 at 22:50
  • @ShadowWizard - Okay, I'll do that.
    – HDE 226868
    Commented Nov 7, 2014 at 22:52
  • @ShadowWizard Thanks; the flag worked.
    – HDE 226868
    Commented Nov 10, 2014 at 23:54

1 Answer 1


The team has gotten very good at detecting serial upvoting. But it is possible to bypass the system given knowledge of the script that detects it and some ingenuity. In this case, it is up to the community to catch these actions and if you believe you are observing that, then flag it on one of the posts with a message stating your reasoning.

But even with direct evidence, meta is not the place for calling individual users out. If you see evidence of vote abuse, then flag the place you see it for moderator attention with a custom message explaining your reasoning for believing there was abuse.

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Another alternative is to use the contact us form relative to the exchange you are using and send a message there with any evidence or observations you have collected regarding the abuse.

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