Possible Duplicates:
The answer to tactical downvoting problem?

As Dan Dyer mentioned in his comment on tactical downvoting, there is a conflict of interest when you have posted your own answer and are allowed to downvote other answers.

Despite the vote editing window being drastically reduced, the fundamental problem remains: I can downvote the other answers permanently and still benefit - my answer gets upvoted ONCE and wham, I have just made up the rep loss for my 10 other downvotes. The vote editing window fixes part of the problem, but there is a more complete fix that has the extra benefit of not preventing legitimate vote changes: to disallow downvotes on competing answers when you have posted one yourself.

The temptation to wrongfully downvote competing answers is huge. The rep loss is tiny in comparison. It has to be in order for people to continue to legitimately downvote.


  • If I have previously voted and then post my own answers, delete my downvotes. Continue to allow me to remove the upvotes - I think this is fully legitimate.
  • If I delete my answer it's probably best to continue to deny downvotes (perhaps even including the question), but I don't have a strong opinion either way.

marked as duplicate by Shog9, George Stocker, Troggy, GEOCHET, random Nov 6 '09 at 0:32

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.


There is a very, very valid reason for this:

If you are posting a correct answer, and have the expertise to know the others are wrong, then you should downvote the other answers, and answer the question correctly.

No one should be made to decide, "Do I downvote the wrong answers so others see they are wrong but not be able to post the right answer, or do I write the correct answer and hope someone backs me up?"

  • Now that I'm a bit more experienced with SO, I'm pretty sure that a single vote from a single potential expert is a drop in the ocean. Fixing the conflict of interest is far more important. – RomanSt Aug 10 '10 at 9:26

Trust the community not to downvote unfairly.

  • 1
    And I wanna! But SO now has some strange work-arounds like not letting you change your votes. If we are trusting the community, then let's remove this restriction! If we aren't, let's implement something that actually works to eliminate the described abuse! – RomanSt Nov 5 '09 at 23:46

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .