Over my time using many of the Stack forums, I have of course asked questions that others thought weren't adequate. I could hardly see why and frankly, it felt somewhat unfair as I could spot many far worse questions than mine which were getting lots of up-votes.
This conundrum has meant that I have been almost incapable of getting my reputation above 5, making it very difficult to effectively contribute to the sites. I have seen my reputation go from almost 100, all the way down to 20 overnight because of one question or one answer (this is an exaggeration).
It's also not explained well how a question is defined as fitting for this site. Nearly all questions except research-able ones have some degree of opinion tied to them - be it in choice of method or choice of answer where there may be multiple. As a result, almost all of the questions I've had have fallen into this category and have received almost cruel responses. What few comments that are left tend not to offer suggestions for improving a question, but instead simply name a vague problem which is of no help what-so-ever.
This could be improved in two ways:
- Increasing the reputation penalty to a user who down-votes a question or answer, or add further requirements to allow a down-vote to be acknowledged.
- Decreasing the reputation penalty to a user when one of their questions or answers is down-voted.
The definition of a good question on this site could also be made more clear and understandable. I've asked questions and gone through the entire page on asking a question - making sure I've ticked every box - and then logged on the next morning to find it's on hold for not being specific enough, despite me virtually spoon-feeding all the information I have to the reader and all of the points related to an answer.
UPDATE: A slightly more significant change that could happen is that questions could enter an admission phase in which questions may be approved or edits suggested. Once 5 suggestions have been completed or the question remains fully approved for an amount of time, it is published to the forum to be answered. This then makes the down-vote virtually obsolete as all questions would be approved.