Why does acceptance of an answer not imply an upvote?
Simply because they are two different things.
Also, it's not always the case where a question OP can upvote, but they can always accept.
Surely if you are accepting an answer you are also implying that it is
No, by accepting an answer the question OP is implying "it is the best answer to their question".
This doesn't necessarily mean it's also worthy of an upvote.
I have seen plenty of answers which certainly answered the question, but was still a poor answer. If there are no other answers, then accept it would be ok, but not necessarily requires an upvote.
What is the point of having two separate actions? I don't get it.
You are confused because you believe accepting an answer will also always mean upvote, but this is not the case.
EDIT for your question edit/comments
I've spent a bit of time answering, and while it's just my opinion, and essentially just an expansion on my first answer above, hopefully this will be useful to you, or at least the debate here.
yes i get those edge cases, but that is veering away from my question.
It's not veering from your question, the edge cases are the answer to your question, their being rare (or not) does not alter the fact their existence answers your question:
- Q: "Why does acceptance of an answer not imply an upvote?"
- A: "Because they are different, and we have different choices ('edge cases' as you call them), so acceptance in some circumstances
does not also mean upvote"
And I don't believe they are as "edge" as you think.
The options a question OP has with "accept":
- Accept and upvote
- Accept and don't vote
- Accept and downvote
Options 2 and 3 may be "edge cases" to you, but there are millions of users on Stack Exchange sites and tens of millions of questions and answers, and as we all vote and do things differently the different scenarios can and will play out.
However rare they may or may not be, their existence answers your question "Why does accept not also mean upvote".
Accept does not mean upvote:
Even if in most cases an accepted answer is or should be upvoted, an accepted answer does not warrant an upvote "just because" it was accepted.
Perhaps this is your confusion, because you often see accepted answers do also warrant an upvote, and so you feel if someone is going to accept then "why not upvote?".
Because this is not always the case, as the two actions are different:
- Upvote = This was a good answer, helpful, useful, informative, etc,
so OP is likely to accept an (one of) upvoted answer
- Accepted = This answered my question, but not necessarily a "good"
answer so not necessarily also an upvote just because accepted
An Answer may well answer the OP's question, but that fact alone does not make it a "good" answer, and so an accepted answer does not necessarily deserve an upvote.
Of course, if there are multiple answers, and the OP upvotes one (or more) then they are likely to also accept one of the ones they upvoted and not one of the ones they did not.
But, again, reasons and scenarios exist which we do not think about here. So it may well happen that for some reason the OP upvotes one answer, and accepts another but doesn't upvote it.
This is why you cannot just state "accepted must also mean upvote too".
Accept and downvote:
There are some scenarios where a question OP could accept and downvote.
Yes, this is likely to be quite rare, but it is "possible", and possible means this is also an "edge case" in answer to your question.
Consider a "link only" answer. The info in the link's destination might answer the question, so you can fix your code (etc) and so accept "this answered my question, it was helpful".
But it being link only makes it a poor answer and so potentially worthy of a downvote.
While you can say these are rare or not, the fact is your question is not about rarities or anything complex, you simply asked "why does accept not also mean upvote".
I have updated it to demonstrate that even the Stack help site is
confused as an accepted question is synonymous with a helpful one.
You cannot take two separate single sentences from the Help Center and dissect them individually based on their individual context, and use that to debate an entirely different and single context.
The Help Center you quoted is just pointing out the basics of voting and accepting separately.
The Help Center does not at all state you should "upvote" an "accepted" answer.
You've taken the fact the Help Center states that both "upvoted" and "accepted" answers are "helpful", and used that to somehow state the Help Center is therefore stating that the two should always be used together.
Just because those two things are evaluated as "helpful" does not mean they are therefore to be used in conjunction with each other at all times.
Also, the quotes certainly do not add any merits or context to your original and even edited question(s) as they are just separate functions and described as such. You joined them together based on some similarity.
The site functions, options, and how we use them are not bound by black and white decisions.
And the Help Center is just for providing basic info about how site functionality works, and it's not perfect, nor does it cater for all scenarios.
Take this Help Center page for example:
Whenever you encounter a question, answer or comment that you feel is
especially useful, vote it up!
Now this Help Center page
Use your downvotes whenever you encounter an egregiously sloppy,
no-effort-expended post, or an answer that is clearly and perhaps
So, also according to the Help Center:
- Vote up = answer is especially useful
- Vote down = an egregiously sloppy, no-effort-expended post
Now consider an answer which answered the question perfectly, but is not "especially useful" and also is not "sloppy, no-effort".
What do you do? Your question was answered, so you accept.
You do not vote up or down because it does not fall under the above criteria.
The answer was "meh", not great, not terrible, just answered your question = accept but not vote.
Does "good" = "helpful" in the context of an answer?
The two words can sometimes be synonymous in describing an answer, and sometimes not.
Here's how I see it:
- A "good" answer will be both "helpful" and "good". It's good for
reasons such as providing plenty of info, alternative approaches,
diagrams, etc, and those reasons will very likely also make it
- A "helpful" answer isn't necessarily a "good" one, it can be
helpful just saying "click this link" and the link goes to a blog
post with lot's of great info. The answer was helpful, but not a