Are you familiar with tapas?

Pincho moruno Chorizo a la sidra Aceitunas Boquerones Croquetas Gambas

These are little appetizers invented in Spain that people enjoy while talking and drinking in the cool of the evening. What makes them so great is that you get a wide variety of tastes without getting fed up.

Not long ago, I asked for suggestions of a new 30k privilege. As presented, I was asking for a big meal at 30k. For this question, I'm looking for unlockables that could be spread around reputation levels like tapas dishes. To give you an idea of what I mean, here's one we are considering:

Access to site analytics

Community moderators have access to a page that includes several interactive charts showing time series of aggregate data such as traffic, posts, page views, and even newsletter subscriptions. Much of it can be cobbled together via public sources, such as SEDE, but not all of it and not all in one place. Traditionally we haven't shown this data to non-moderators because there's not a lot people can do with it.

But there's no reason users with X reputation couldn't have access to those statistics. Conceivably, it could even be useful for community leaders to have better data about their site's history collected in one place. More importantly, however, it's an amusement people could look forward to earning.

Micro-privileges should:

  1. Be desirable for people who have been active on the site for a long time,
  2. Not add significant responsibilities for those earning them*, and
  3. Not cause any problems for other people using the site.

What tasty dish would you like to serve to high-reputation users?

* Quite a few of the 30k suggestions are moderator privileges which mean you get to do something that, in turn, could become an obligation. This is one of the things that makes me uncomfortable about giving 30k users the burden of moderating comments.

  • 172
    Share some ad revenue – copy Apr 16 '15 at 23:18
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    Just to nitpick on your last paragraph, I don't believe moderator privileges should be a burden. If high-rep users want to continue providing great content and nothing else, let them do it. – Mysticial Apr 16 '15 at 23:21
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    Question: On beta sites, when would users unlock these privileges? – HDE 226868 Apr 16 '15 at 23:51
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    @HDE226868: Maybe. The analytics view makes a lot of sense for beta sites, for instance. But we'd probably want to keep the reputation levels constant for more cosmetic items. – Jon Ericson Apr 17 '15 at 0:02
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    @JonEricson I would support 6,000 reputation being the threshold for analytics on beta sites. It's consistent with being 1.5 times the "trusted user" level. – Joe Z. Apr 17 '15 at 0:20
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    I think it's a bad idea to bind useful and harmless features to only a subset of users. The 1k reputation requirement for observing vote counts is extremely annoying on sites where I am not registered or don't have sufficient reputation. Is there any reason why the site analytics should not be a completely public feature? – corsair992 Apr 17 '15 at 0:26
  • 16
    As a glutton, I resent tapas. – Shog9 Apr 17 '15 at 1:03
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    Allow 30k to use footnotes ;-) – Arjan Apr 17 '15 at 12:10
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    @Arjan You can make hand-crafted footnotes with <sup></sup> and ---. And I don't really see why such an ability would be restricted to high rep users... – user262767 Apr 17 '15 at 17:10
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    @Najib, if I thought it answered the question, I'd have posted it as an answer, and left out the smiley... That said, handcrafting foot notes is not a good solution, I feel, so whenever a Stack Exchange employee does that, I like to point that out to them. Eric, remember your "it's still a pain and the results aren't ideal"? Use your powers! ;-) – Arjan Apr 19 '15 at 10:45
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    (Sorry, Jon, that "Eric" should read Jon in my off-topic comment above...) – Arjan Apr 19 '15 at 15:06
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    Uh, I've read that question two times now but still have a hard time seeing the difference to your previous 30k privilege question. What is it you're actually looking for, privileges that shouldn't just apply to 30kers but also lower ones? Or prvileges that should be somehow smaller than the ones presented previously? Does this mean the previous 30k privilege question has failed somehow and is now considered obsolete? Sorry if those are stupid questions, but I try to understand what the purpose of this question actually is, already knowing what tapas are didn't really help me here. – Christian Rau Apr 30 '15 at 14:12
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    I agree with the top comment on that other question you link: please stay away from moderation features. (In fact, it may be useful to overhaul the moderation privileges so that they depend on useful moderation activity instead of content provided.) – Raphael Jun 17 '15 at 9:18
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    @Won't: Thanks for the prodding. I've been tracking these for when I have bandwidth to do something about them. SInce it's been, what, half a year since I suggested this, it's waaaaay past time to provide my feedback. So I've started to leave edits below. – Jon Ericson Oct 23 '15 at 20:32
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    @JonEricson thank you for saying why you chose what you chose for everything! :) – ᔕᖺᘎᕊ Oct 23 '15 at 20:36

51 Answers 51


Question Forgiveness

(or, Help a Question that was Downvoted Into Oblivion)

On occasion, there are questions that exist which may not have been well-worded when they were first asked, and attracted a ton of downvotes.

Someone may come along later and edit it into shape - be it the OP or some kind soul - but the question is still stuck at a myriad of downvotes. In that state, regardless of whether or not it makes its way through the review queues, the question is still branded as being "bad" because it happened to catch a ton of negative hype when it first came up.

While this is a rare thing to see - a question downvoted so heavily but still has a chance - it would be a shame to lose questions that have suffered from either the Meta effect or happened to catch users at a peak time who would disagree with it.

To that, I propose the Question Forgiveness micro-privilege.


Encourage community-driven investments on questions which are objectively good that may have fallen out of favor of the mob at a given time.

In a nutshell:

You use your reputation to pay against the reputation of a heavily downvoted question. The question then can rise above the filter thresholds and give it a chance to be seen/voted on once more.

In finer detail:

  • This is only usable against questions that have a score of -10 or lower.
  • You would pay 50 + 2 reputation per point to balance out the negative votes on the existing question, with a minimum of 50 reputation spent at a score of -10. (Example: A question scored -17 would cost you 64 reputation to revive, due to the 50 minimum and 14 extra rep, 2 for each point below 10.) The question would not receive any upvotes, nor would the OP receive any reputation in the process.
  • The question would be made more prominent for a period of time (72 hours).
  • Voting on the question (negative voting) would not be visible to others; only the people that downvoted would be able to see their downvote on the question. For users with the ability to see vote score, they would either get the true upvote total, or the total comparing the forgiveness score with the original score. They would also be able to see that this question is being forgiven, and that it should be revisited based on the merits of the question alone.
  • At the end of the forgiveness period, the actual score is restored to the question.

The core of the suggestion is above, but here are two controversial additions to it:

  • After the trial period, if the new question score balances out the negative score, then the 50+ reputation investment is refunded. Otherwise, the reputation is lost. (Example: A question with -11 score has this applied to it; and there are 11 upvotes on the question. Whomever offered it forgiveness would have their 52 reputation refunded.)
  • After the trial period, if the new question score results in more downvotes than upvotes, then the investor would lose reputation (up to 10) proportional to the net total score. (Example: A question with -11 score has this applied to it, and there are 3 upvotes and 10 downvotes. Since that's a net score of -7, the investor would lose 7 reputation.
  • 5
    I like what you're trying to accomplish. I'm a little queasy about concealing votes without saying you're concealing votes, but as soon as you say it people will know why so I don't know how to do that cleanly. (Election primaries also conceal negative votes, but they do it for all candidates; you're doing it for only some questions.) I think you'll want the promotion period to be longer than 12-24 hours, but shorter than the week that a bounty gets -- maybe 2 or 3 days? Remember: timezones, weekends, and the general press of life can keep people from noticing right away. – Monica Cellio Jun 21 '15 at 19:50
  • Those are some pretty good suggestions; the timing specifically would work well. I'm not sure how to broach the "not telling people" portion since I feel that may defeat the purpose; I want the question to be revisited with a relatively clean slate and for it to be free of any previous prejudices. If we're telling people that the actual vote is being hidden, I'm not so sure if the reaction we'd get - would it be positive, negative, or neutral? – Makoto Jun 21 '15 at 20:06
  • Right -- if you tell people you're concealing the votes then people know it's a downvoted question, but if you don't you're being unpredictably dishonest (the reader no longer knows which questions report votes accurately and which don't). I don't have a good answer to this. – Monica Cellio Jun 21 '15 at 20:10
  • Perhaps it could be added in with the view of close votes privilege. If a question is in the process of being forgiven, then they could identify it and see either the accurate score, or the score before and during forgiveness. – Makoto Jun 21 '15 at 20:21
  • I'd like to see something like this, but more like: pay 50 rep to hijack this question. Votes will be reset to 0 after your edit. You are now this question's OP. Only abandoned questions are viable. - "Abandoned" is a term to be decided: some amount of inactivity? There's a giant flow of Fallout 4 questions by 1 reps getting hammered pretty hard at Arqade. Users there seem apt to just try to box them out, with no attempt at constructive edits. The SOP seems to be: if OP is unresponsive, just throw the baby out with the bathwater. #wrongwaywrongroad – Mazura Jan 9 '16 at 5:20
  • @Mazura: There's very, very little value in taking over the OP's question; depending on the question, there's very little you could do to aid it as the OP once you do take it over. – Makoto Jan 9 '16 at 8:07
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    Bounties achieve some of this intent by highlighting the question (special indicator + dedicated 'Featured' tab). If you start a bounty, your reason for doing so is also stated in the bounty's banner. However, you don't get the rep back when setting bounties; think of it as a donation. – Lawrence Jan 12 '16 at 23:10
  • @Lawrence: A bounty isn't enough to undo the negative impression that a question gets if it's heavily downvoted. Further, a bounty never awards the question, but rather the answer. – Makoto Jan 12 '16 at 23:11
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    @Makoto What it does is give others a push and a stated reason to reconsider the question. – Lawrence Jan 12 '16 at 23:21
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    eh, keep it simple. you spend n rep per downvote cast to reset all of the voting back to 0. you can use said privilege once per month on open questions with more than n downvotes. no concealing, no voodoo, just a plain old reset button. – Kevin B Aug 3 '17 at 22:43
  • @KevinB: Now that I'm revisiting this (I've simply engraved this URL into a shiny pitchfork that I use every now and then on MSO), I'm thinking of setting some minimum rep contribution. Not so sure on the monthly thing, but saying no more than three active ones (similar to bounties) would be alright, too. – Makoto Aug 3 '17 at 22:45
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    I think this is a good idea, but the implementation is too complicated. A simple reset would work better. The original down-voters get their 1 reputation back, and also get pinged that something happened to the question if they look at their reputation notices. Maybe a 20:1 reputation cost, a limited number of questions over some time period, and you can only set the question to -1 (so your up-vote takes it to zero)? That would be 180 reputation to reset a -10 question to zero score. I'm not sure that's high enough though. – ColleenV Aug 4 '17 at 16:55
  • @ColleenV: Resetting this wouldn't be suitable since you're basically assuming that the person forgiving the question is absolutely correct in their decision. By at least keeping that history around, you can determine if they actually were right by comparing new data to old data. – Makoto Apr 18 '18 at 16:12
  • In my experience, this would only work on StackOverflow and maybe SuperUser. On other sites, questions downvoted to -10 are hopeless: things like Holocaust denial on History, crackpottery on Physics, or "How do I hack Facebook?" on Information Security. Questions that are merely poorly asked get one or two downvotes and an "unclear" closure. – Mark Dec 8 '18 at 1:01
  • I don't agree with the exact numbers. It shouldn't start at such a high amount and only increase by a very low amount per vote. Overall, though, this is a good feature request. – Pika the Master of the Whales Dec 26 '18 at 2:07

Ability to look at deleted comments (unless deleted by moderation).

Similar to the 10K privilege, even higher rep users could gain access to deleted comments.

  • 5
    Good idea, but please have them hidden by default with a [Show X deleted comments] button, not shown by default like deleted answers, else this will be a punishment not a reward! – user56reinstatemonica8 Nov 24 '19 at 19:58
  • I agree to that. – GhostCat Nov 24 '19 at 20:11

Edit the "Top Network Posts" List

This is an offshoot of another answer here: show off the posts I'm most proud of.

Currently, a look at my Top Network Questions list makes it look like I spend all my time on ELU.SE:

My top network posts

But that's primarily a function of site traffic, not where I spend my time or what I am most proud of.

Thus, I propose allowing high-rep users to manually customize what appears under "Top Network Posts." This could mean either:

  • Allow that a particular site's posts be hidden from in the list.
    • So I could hide all ELU posts. Note that this is different from making ELU private: I don't mind if people know I am an ELU user, I just don't want its posts dominating my list.
  • Allow manual selection of individual posts
    • Give me a list of posts to select from that meet some minimum vote threshold. And override the behavior where the current site's posts are ignored in the calculation.
  • Dat [word-request] tag, though. – Nathan Tuggy Nov 25 '15 at 20:16
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    @NathanTuggy Exactly. The fact that I got lucky on a few word-request questions means that my (hopefully) more worthwhile contributions elsewhere don't appear. – Nathaniel is protesting Nov 25 '15 at 20:18
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    Related: meta.stackexchange.com/a/244460/162102 (same problem, different request). – Monica Cellio Nov 25 '15 at 20:30
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    Since this would be tied to a privilege level it's inherently site-specific -- so edits to the list would affect just that site (though you could ask for a site-wide feature to do this). I think that's probably a feature and not a bug; that way I can highlight posts related to this site, and have different lists on different sites. – Monica Cellio Nov 25 '15 at 20:32
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    Setting aside feasibility, etc... I like this idea, but I think it makes more sense as just a feature not as a site privilege. Top Network posts are a network-wide concern, so edits likely should apply network-wide (which makes locking access to it behind a single-site reputation kinda weird), if nothing else. – Adam Lear ModStaff Nov 26 '15 at 3:28

Ability to delete posts without score constraints

Right now it's impossible to delete a post which is upvoted unless you are a moderator. Unfortunately, a lot of poor posts get at least a score of one, and they need elected mod interventions to fix. The ability to clean up these posts would be very welcome.

  • Well, they can be deleted from review if they get sent there by a LQP/NAA I think? But yes - it would be nice to have an option to VTD otherwise, even if it takes more users to do so, just like it works in review – Jenayah Nov 24 '19 at 23:31

Ability to lock and unlock posts

This can be limited (e.g. to 1 hour, no override of mods and CMs, etc.), but I don't see why users with enough rep should not be able to intervene and placate edit wars.

  • 1
    I like the part about no overrides of mods. – GhostCat Nov 24 '19 at 19:18

See vote counts on tag synonyms

I propose the ability to see vote counts on tag synonyms.

This is indeed a very minor privilege, but I do some tag moderation and I am sometimes curious how the balance between up and downvote on tag synonyms is so it would be nice to have.

  • This seems to already be implemented now. – user306255 Oct 25 '15 at 11:43
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    @sumelic Are you sure? If so, how? – wythagoras Oct 27 '15 at 13:41
  • Sorry, I actually just realized I didn't read carefully enough. The score count is visible on the Tag Synonyms page and on the tag's page, but that doesn't split upvotes and downvotes. – user306255 Oct 27 '15 at 20:46

There are bounties to encourage good answers. Maybe it would be nice to have a similar super-charged way to reward really good questions by new/low rep users. I've noticed that the ratio of bad to good questions seems to be getting worse. So, users that have achieved a reasonably high level could get the ability to transfer a little of their rep to low rep users asking really good questions (i.e. well written, researched, etc), a little like a bounty for questions. Maybe 10 rep for really good question, and 25 for a superb question (or maybe even 25/50). This might encourage folks willing to spend time to compose good questions, even in areas that don't normally get lots of activity/upvotes.

  • 7
    Actually, the current bounty system sort of does this. If the question is really good, the additional attention should result in some upvotes. Moreover, if the question hasn’t been sufficiently answered well, the asker has an increased chance for this to happen, which is arguably a more important reward than some reputation. Still, bounties could be used more often in this way … – Wrzlprmft Jun 17 '15 at 18:35

Ability to add and remove post notices

This is actually super needed on Skeptics or any other site that uses them. It would also promote the usage of notices which we've found is usually a better strategy than commenting for repetitive comments (if it looks official, it becomes impersonal).


Ability to Accept Answers on Abandoned Questions

The sites are littered with questions that have an answer that clearly resolves the original question, but that has not and probably never will be marked answered because the asker has abandoned the question and/or his account.

Not even moderators can accept an answer for a question. And the existence of these zombie "unaccepted" questions thwarts searches for questions that could use attention from a new expert. (Believe me: I've tried to be helpful by going through questions with hasaccepted:no on a number of sites, but after seeing so many perfect-but-unaccepted answers I realized it's a waste of time.)

At some level of experience we can trust users to designate an "accepted answer." To mitigate any concerns this feature could be implemented with the following limitations:

  1. This only applies to questions with at least one upvoted answer but no accepted answer.
  2. A user cannot accept his own answer to another user's question.
  3. Only answers with positive net votes can be accepted.
  4. The accept rep goes (if anywhere) to the original asker
  5. Only questions by users who have not been seen in at least a month can have an answer accepted for them.

Finally, if the asker ever comes back and for any reason doesn't like the accepted answer he can change or unaccept it, as usual.

  • 3
    Has the "unanswered questions" view changed? I thought "unanswered" meant "has no upvoted answers". – Monica Cellio Sep 16 '15 at 19:54
  • @MonicaCellio - Huh, it does seem to mean that now. Did it change sometime in the last year? – feetwet Sep 16 '15 at 20:00
  • I think it's been like that for a couple years, at least, but my memory on this is fuzzy. If your "unanswered questions" view is overwhelming but there are good answers there, you have the ability to trim the list down a bit. :-) – Monica Cellio Sep 16 '15 at 20:09
  • @MonicaCellio - I must have been doing an advanced search. Just amended my suggestion accordingly. – feetwet Sep 16 '15 at 20:15
  • You already proposed this, it got downvoted (indicating unpopularity) and deleted. Why propose it again here? – Robert Longson Sep 16 '15 at 20:18
  • @RobertLongson - it was proposed here first, and the deleted proposal would have been a duplicate but for my misunderstanding that I just clarified here. Also, apparently I have too much rep ;) – feetwet Sep 16 '15 at 20:20

Oct. 23, 2015 (Jon Ericson)

I think there's a good idea here, but it needs fleshing out. In particular, what can we put on this page that will be useful to high-reputation users that won't be useful for a brand new user? The most obvious thing is data on activities that require elevated privileges. We have something like that in the 10k tools page. (That page could use a makeover, by the way.) In addition, the added site analytics for 25k users seems to cover some of the ideas below.

What's New Dashboard

Give high rep users access to a page that shows recent posts in their favorite tags. All questions from the past day, for example. Each post should have relevant stats that help guide the user to whether they should try to provide a new answer (how many answers, what's the min/max/avg votes on the answers). They can use these tools to min/max their further reputation gains.

Also throw in some other current trends for the site (I'm terrible with analytics, someone suggest some details) that just show current site activity, at a higher level than the review stats page. Maybe show amount of activity (posts & comments) in popular tags for the day/week/month? Or show some detailed analytics for the user's recent posts, like which posts have the most views and least views? Tools that give them an idea of what's working and not working on the site in terms of traffic.

  • 5
    Is there any reason why any of this should not be available for everyone? – corsair992 Apr 17 '15 at 2:22
  • @corsair992 How does that argument not apply to the majority of the existing privileges? – Keen Apr 17 '15 at 2:28
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    The majority of the existing privileges are either moderation-related or have some potential for abuse (the "view vote counts" privilege is an exception to this, which I hate). None of your suggestions seem to present a similar argument for limiting their availability though. – corsair992 Apr 17 '15 at 2:35
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    @corsair992 Can you point to something in the question that indicates that our answers should have some good reason for only being available to high-rep users? – Keen Apr 17 '15 at 3:20
  • Actually, the main post also seems to be assuming that some useful features should be limited to high rep users, as shown by the example that they're considering. Needless to say, I strongly disagree with that conclusion. – corsair992 Apr 17 '15 at 3:28
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    @corsair992 Well, I can say that I'm not a fan of you taking it out on me. Have fun down voting all these answers. – Keen Apr 17 '15 at 3:43
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    I am simply expressing my disagreement. – corsair992 Apr 17 '15 at 3:52
  • 1
    @corsair992 This is an answer, not a question; you've misplaced where your votes should go. – Keen Apr 17 '15 at 4:06
  • I don't disagree with the main point of the question - only at the implication that the "micro-privileges" should not necessarily have a meaningful correlation with the reputation that they require. I do, however, disagree with your suggested feature as one of those privileges. – corsair992 Apr 17 '15 at 4:14
  • @Keen - Aren't you supposed to 'meta vote' on questions and answers here on Meta? – Mazura Jan 9 '16 at 5:42

Add a hovercard for accepted or highest scoring answer when looking for a question

The one thing that really annoys me when I'm searching for questions is that I can barely see any information about the accepted answer (or highest voted answers for questions without an accepted answer). There's an expanded hovercard for users that contains some basic information about them. However, when you are looking at a question and you hover your cursor over it, it contains no info about the accepted answer:

enter image description here

I think there ought to be at least a little bit of information about the accepted/highest scoring answer when you hover over it, like it's score, answerer, and time it was answered.

  • Ooh, why Jon Skeet? Why not your hovercard? – new QOpenGLWidget Feb 23 '19 at 14:58

Wear a hat all year round

A micro-privilege that doesn't affect what a user can do, doesn't involve any new responsibilities, it's just that, a little reward for the effort.

One of the consequences of the hats that I like is that you earn them on one site, but can show them off across the network. This perk would thus be a way of showing you know your way around the mechanics of SE, even if you’re new on a particular site.

The implementation could be very different from the winter bash implementation. And whether it’s an actual hat on the avatar or a different icon added to the card doesn’t really matter. So it would be a fixed decoration added to the user’s avatar or card that is shown across the whole network.

This perk can be multi-level, giving different “hats” at various reputation levels. So it counts as many perks!

  • 1
    Original idea but totally unfeasible. To enable such a thing they'll have to include the WB script for everyone, and it's very heavy, both on server and client as it's dynamic SVG path rendered by the browser. Plus many people dislike hats and won't be able to not see those non-winter-bash hats. – Shadow Wizard Wearing Mask V2 Dec 15 '18 at 9:27
  • @ShadowWizard: it doesn’t need to be as complicated as the winter bash hats. See edit. – Cris Luengo Dec 16 '18 at 19:39

View the time votes were cast

Sometimes I come across posts that have been downvoted and edited. However, I have no way of knowing if it was downvoted mostly before or mostly after the edit. It would be convenient to be able to see when all the votes were cast so I can infer more accurately why they were cast. I think this would be good as a 1.5k privilege to fill in the gap between 1k and 2k.

  • You can already view the time a vote was cast, since it is recorded as a rep change. – forest distrusts StackExchange Dec 15 '18 at 8:35
  • @forest it's not very convenient to do it that way. There are questions like this that were asked years ago. It would take a very long time to go through the entire reputation history and see when all the votes were cast. – Pika the Master of the Whales Dec 15 '18 at 15:54
  • I think this is potentially interesting. However, I'd worry this might focus people on who voted. We already get the occasional detective comparing various timestamps to determine who downvoted (or occasionally upvoted) a post. This would encourage that useless behavior. What would you do with the information once you got it? – Jon Ericson Dec 15 '18 at 19:14
  • @JonEricson determine why the post was downvoted. It's a lot easier to figure out the reason if you know how many votes were cast before and after an edit. – Pika the Master of the Whales Dec 15 '18 at 19:17
  • 2
    Hmmm... Maybe the feature you want is voting by revision? So if the first revision has a negative and the second (or later) revision has no downvotes, we can infer the edit saved the post. Still tricky, I think, but I could see developing a concept of "influential edits" that change the course of post voting. (It would have to be statistically meaningful, I suppose, which would limit the number of edits it could be awarded to.) I think there's something here, but it would need some thought. – Jon Ericson Dec 15 '18 at 19:35

Oct. 24, 2015 (Jon Ericson)

Questions get bumped when they are edited. There's no way to know if the edit is minor (removing an unneeded tag) or major ( => ). Sometimes you want to bump a question for community review. Breaking this rule is bound to be confusing with minimal gains.

By the way, limiting your retag efforts to one or two questions a day seems like a bad idea. Having been active on a tiny site (< 2 questions a day) I understand why it's awkward to flood the page with trivial edits. But it's far better to rip the bandaid off in one go than to dribble them out over days and weeks. Just do it and if anyone complains, ping me. I'm saving up a rant for that occasion. ;-)

This is adapted from this suggestion:

The first 10 tag-only edits per day to questions not on the front page do not bump the question on the front-page

The number 10 can be debated and one could add an additional criterion that the question must have a given age.

I sometimes come across a situation, where I want to retag a small bunch of older questions, e.g., to apply a new tag to appropriate old questions or to clean up an overused tag. Such a job would bump the respective questions to the front page, and thus on small pages, it’s usually considered best to only retag a one or two questions at a time and wait until they trickled down before editing the next ones. This is obviously quite annoying and makes me often refrain from such an undertaking altogether.

The rate limit is to avoid vandalism by rage-quitters or overzealous editors, who want to retag everything.

An alternative way to implement this would be to have such questions bumped with a probability of 10 % (or similar) and to always bump the first such question each day. This way, some of the respective questions would appear on the front page and thus be subject to control.

The questions may still be bumped in certain tag-specific views and similar to tag subscribers do not miss the questions.

  • I made the identical, unadapted suggestion and it ended up getting 4 downvotes and getting deleted. – Joe Z. Apr 17 '15 at 20:59
  • 4
    No! Edits that change tags absolutely must bump the question. Otherwise people who subscribe or more generally are interested in one of the added tags, or who ignore one of the removed tags, will miss the question. Tag-changing edits bumping the question is not just about them getting peer review, it's first and foremost about reaching readers. – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Apr 18 '15 at 20:29
  • @Gilles: Good point, but this can mostly be addressed making the bumping specific to the respective view (provided that this is no nightmare to implement). The main concern here is the front page. – Wrzlprmft Apr 18 '15 at 20:43
  • @Wrzlprmft How do you distinguish between people browsing the front page who are interested in the added tag (whether or not they are logged-in users who have marked this tag as interesting), and people browsing the front page who aren't interested in the added tag? – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Apr 18 '15 at 20:50
  • @Gilles: People browsing the front page would have seen the question when it was first posted already – unless they ignored a removed tag (hence, only mostly be addressed). – Wrzlprmft Apr 18 '15 at 20:55
  • 1
    @Gilles, How about the question isn't bumped, but the people who "follow" the new tag (via the subscribe mechanism) get the standard notices. And/or it's only bumped for subscribers. – Awesome Poodles Jun 22 '15 at 6:35
  • @AwesomePoodles Doesn't work for people who use the tag as a filtering mechanism other than subscribing to it (ignoring, client-side filtering, mental filter). – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Jun 22 '15 at 11:37

I'm sure this isn't going to be received well, but...


In my mind, and maybe not everyone disagrees, a high reputation user should be someone who is knowledgeable and provides quality content.

These perks give too much incentive to 'game' the system and aggressively moderate, which I don't think is healthy, and is already happening fairly frequently.

If you look at where these users' reputation comes from (my own included), you'll see that it's primarily from answering and asking basic, bordering on stupid, questions that are asked frequently by students and new developers. Some users take this a step further by optimizing the question for search indexing, and then aggressively closing duplicates and referring users to their own content; which is likely also a duplicate of an older question, itself.

These perks just incentivize people to sit around all day and play Stack Exchange like a game. While there's no value to having five duplicates of 'What does << mean in Java?' asked and answered each day, I think it's also detrimental for users to receive perks (specifically, privileges) for aggressively moderating these questions.

  • 1
    "These perks just incentivize people to sit around all day and play StackExchange like a game." ... gamification, anyone? – Nathan Tuggy Jan 24 '16 at 4:12

Oct. 24, 2015 (Jon Ericson)

Votes are like opinions: everybody has one. Voting isn't always scientific, but it's pretty much the best option we have to divide helpful content from unhelpful. Weighting the opinions of high reputation users (who can throw some weight around in comments and chat in any case) seems counterproductive. There's also the complication of building a UI for a very small fraction of users.


At some very high rep level -- say 50k -- the user might get 3 daily "supervotes". A supervote is in all respects just like multiple regular up or down votes: let's say a supervote is worth 3 up or down votes. These would be incredibly handy in righting wrongs: degrading an accepted but wrong answer, or rewarding a great answer that's gotten buried in the noise. I see these situations on a regular basis; it would be great to have a little extra muscle to help fix them.

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    This. We've all seen the "I wish I could upvote twice" comments on super posts. Super votes are the appropriate measure. – Bergi Jun 16 '15 at 20:21
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    −2. :-) The net vote (as well as its two components) is a good measure of how much of the community has voted on the post, and this would remove that. – msh210 Jun 16 '15 at 20:38
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    This smells a bit too much to me like "Some animals are more equal than others" – jakebeal Jun 16 '15 at 21:36
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    @jakebeal I'm going to come out and say that's exactly what it is. Is SO a democracy, or a meritocracy? I'm going to go with the latter. – Ernest Friedman-Hill Jun 16 '15 at 21:41
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    High rep users already can afford to offer bounties to answers that they like, rewarding those users (although it doesn't affect answer order). – Flimm Jun 17 '15 at 9:32
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    I am totally loving the votes on all of these microprivileges. This one has +12 and -9 as of this writing, and many others are similar. Wonder how super votes would change that balance? :) – Ernest Friedman-Hill Jun 17 '15 at 19:21
  • @ErnestFriedman-Hill While SO certainly strives to be a meritocracy, rep alone is not an adequate measure of merit. It is a measure of activity. Now, if downvotes were -10 to match out an upvote's +10, then rep would more accurately represent a person's standing in the community. – forest distrusts StackExchange Dec 15 '18 at 8:34

Ability to Favorite a User

Ok, I know this have been a feature request a while ago and have been shot down, due to it converting the SE sites into a social network. But I don't think this will hurt if it's available for just the 10K users.
The purpose could be to read more of their posts in future or probably even to track the user's suspicious behaviour. I have never seen the mod tools for 10k+ users, so I have no idea if it's already available or not. But it'd be a nice addition, if it isn't already available.


Oct. 24, 2015 (Jon Ericson)

Besides other problems, the chat super ping has an awkward interface that makes it a hassle. Sorry to burst your bubble. ;-)

The ability to "superping" any user

I'm not a mod, but I understand this is a power that exists... Maybe it will be helpful to address users directly, without hassle.

  • You mean the ability to ping any user in chat? – user642796 Apr 17 '15 at 7:43
  • @ArthurFischer The way I read it, he's talking about comments. Where you can now @ ping posters, previous commenters, etc, you could ping everybody instead. I can't really think of a lot of cases where I would find his useful. But if others want it, it might be a nice perk. – Reto Koradi Apr 17 '15 at 8:14
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    @RetoKoradi I have a feeling something like that was intended, but currently even mods can't simply @ping any user in comments. The only mod power I can think of along these lines is the chat superping. – user642796 Apr 17 '15 at 8:26
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    That's not really a micro privilege though, it's an actual power. – Madara's Ghost Apr 17 '15 at 11:37

Oct. 23, 2015 (Jon Ericson)

I addressed this in a comment. Flag queues can be a problem, but the solution isn't to shame moderators. (I don't think that's the intention of the idea, but it's how things would play out practically.) Rather we need to work on ways to help them handle the load.

Let them see a ~ 15 minute cached count of the number of moderator attention flags. Just the count, not the actual posts that were flagged. This will help them get an idea of how many flags moderators are handling, how many of them happen on their site, and also to let them decide if they want to give some verbal support to the moderators to cleanse the mod queue.

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    I don't really think the moderators need any "verbal support". I get that you aren't actually talking about people complaining, but that's likely what will happen. :-( – Jon Ericson Apr 17 '15 at 0:13
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    I'd prefer a "tip your moderator" feature on flags. Tips should be in the form of poetry or bratwurst. – Shog9 Apr 17 '15 at 1:06
  • Depending on the quality, either poetry or bratwurst could be considered + or - ... – keshlam Sep 17 '15 at 13:08

A minority opinion, but someone has to say it:

Y'know, some of us are supremely uninterested in this points thing. For us, using score to gate potentially dangerous permissions makes some sense but the win-a-new-knob idea really is not a motivator, and putting anything actually useful behind such a wall comes across more as self-defeating, discouraging folks from participating by making them jump through unnecessarily high hoops.

This, along with the endless demands that I reclassify comments as answers and vice versa, will probably cause me to abandon SE at some point. It has become too caught up in playing points games and splitting hairs, and is losing sight of its stated goals.

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    So, what is the micro-privilege that you are proposing? – user259867 Sep 16 '15 at 23:29
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    I'm asking whether new micros will actually be worth the investment, or if this is just inertia carrying things forward long past the point of diminishing returns. There are places where all of SE would benefit from some invested resource. Unless this is specifically a reward for the developers, I would prioritize it lower than those. But I accept that even by the standards of this mob I'm a wierdo. – keshlam Sep 17 '15 at 0:42
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    This does not provide an answer to the question. To critique or request clarification from an author, leave a comment below their post. – tchrist Sep 18 '15 at 1:04
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    This is more of a comment than an... oh I see what ya did there. Plus one because I agree. Give people all the stupid hats they want; just let the site work how it's supposed to... for everyone. – Mazura Jan 9 '16 at 5:32

I'm still ambivalent about microprivileges, but I'll suggest::

Who agreed?

Would show a list of the up-voters on our own question, answer, or comment.

(I do not recommend "who disagreed" -- that way lie personal arguments -- but it'd be interesting to see whether my endorsements came from folks I particularly respect, which could be a bit of egoboo, especially if I wasn't sure. "Me too" without "me too"s.)

Failing that, a rough histogram of rep of endorsers would give some of the same info without any individuals being named.

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    Voting is anonymous. Period. It doesn't matter if it is up or down. – Patrick Hofman Nov 25 '15 at 19:26
  • Understood. Thought this was limited enough to be a possible exception; if not, not. As the floating-head meditation guide in the ad said, "I'm unattached." – keshlam Nov 25 '15 at 19:30

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