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A lot of users find the 'reputation required' message on protected questions hard to understand, specifically when they've gained the network association bonus and they think they have earned enough reputation.

The dialog states (emphasis mine):

Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site.

That isn't entirely true. This 10 reputation was gained on that site, but through the association bonus. Users simply don't get the association bonus doesn't count.

Can we change the wording? Maybe to something like this:

Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (excluding the network association bonus).

Or:

Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation gained through upvotes on this site.

marked as duplicate by rene, Ward - Reinstate Monica, Nathan Tuggy, ᔕᖺᘎᕊ, Shadow The Princess Wizard feature-request May 30 '16 at 10:00

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

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    The last option isn't going to work since you can gain the 10 rep by having five suggested edits accepted. – user642796 Dec 14 '15 at 11:38
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    Indeed, but that would make the dialog longer, and possibly users exploiting this to get their reputation easy. While not entirely true, it might be the best option. – Patrick Hofman Dec 14 '15 at 11:39
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    I don't suggest that one lists all the acceptable ways to gain the reputation required, but one shouldn't make it seem more restrictive than it is. Your first option seems perfectly fine to me. – user642796 Dec 14 '15 at 11:43
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    Yeah the first option is much better than the current one. At least it made sense to me after he explained it to me ... – Иво Недев Dec 14 '15 at 11:49
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    The first option seems fine, though the second option might be improved by replacing "upvotes" with "activity" or "participation". – JTL Dec 14 '15 at 17:17
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    Is this really a dupe as some people are suggesting? The old question is discussing the feature and presents the rewording as an option, this one accept the feature as it is now and just ask for rewording... don't seem quite the same. – Hitodama May 29 '16 at 17:29
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I also had no idea that the protected question rep requirement didn't include the association bonus.

Since the dialog shows to everyone, including non-users casually browsing, I don't think we should confuse people with mention of network association bonus, though.

I think the following would work:

Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation earned by activity on this site.


EDIT: Either this was implemented awfully fast, or it was implemented before I made the suggestion. (I just assumed the wording given in this question was the current wording.) But I just stumbled across the following notice on a Code Review question:

This question is protected to prevent "thanks!", "me too!", or spam answers by new users. To answer it, you must have earned at least 10 reputation on this site.

Or is that a separate notice?

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    I'm not sure just bolding that word would really help explain to those who consider the association bonus earned. – Nathan Tuggy Dec 30 '15 at 5:56
  • @NathanTuggy, bolding was to illustrate the change. I wasn't intending to have it be bolded in the actual message. That word doesn't exist in the current message. Probably more could be done though. – Wildcard Dec 30 '15 at 6:20
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    Nathan points to the real problem. People think the association bonus is earned to. I disagree this makes any difference. – Patrick Hofman Dec 30 '15 at 7:24
  • @PatrickHofman, good point. Edited. I was trying to find a better wording that wouldn't confuse casual readers unfamiliar with stackexchange, and I think I've done it now. With this wording, I think when someone with 101 rep (association bonus) tried to post an answer and couldn't, they would reread the notice and then understand—"Oh, I guess my association bonus isn't 'activity on this site'...okay...." – Wildcard Dec 30 '15 at 7:32
  • So the only difference is "upvotes" vs "activity". Not that significant in my opinion. But thanks for thinking along! – Patrick Hofman Dec 30 '15 at 7:58
  • Not that significant perhaps, but more accurate (see Артур Фишер's comment). Also, upvote isn't really a word, it's just the lingo we use at this site. – Wildcard Dec 30 '15 at 8:09
  • See the text in my question. That is the current message. – Patrick Hofman Dec 31 '15 at 6:58
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The rule of excluding bonus is inconsistent with other privileges (such as voting and commenting), which in general is not a good idea - consistency is an important design consideration. If the rules will be the same, we wouldn't have all these questions/discussions.

So it is much more important to have a clear explanation of the rule, especially for new to the site users. I would suggest the combined message

Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer requires 10 reputation gained through upvotes on this site( the network association bonus 100 points is not considered - see What is a “protected” question? ).

Adding link to detailed explanation what are rules about "protected question" is critical to clarify any questions.

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