Please note: This is not a request to do anything. I'd like to obtain a general consensus before filing specific requests for specific changes.

We apparently get quite a bit of confusion from users about being able to answer protected questions. This is despite the very obvious guidance "must have earned 10 reputation, but the association bonus does not count". I believe that the wording of this is causing lots of confusion among users, seeing as the per-site metas routinely get questions asking about this (as do we, to a much lesser extent these days, which could be because of my anonymous edit to add in the proposed phrasing here to the FAQ).

These questions are not only the basic "why didn't my bonus count?", they are also more complicated, such as this: "I started a bounty after I earned 10 reputation; why did it deduct from my earned rep rather than my bonus rep?".

I suggest that changing this wording from "must have earned 10 reputation, but the association bonus does not count" to "must have at least 10 reputation, or 110 if you earned the association bonus". This would eliminate many sources of confusion; for instance, the "complicated" example above would simply not exist, because your reputation dropped below 110.

Overall, this would entail editing FAQs here on MSE with this wording as official, and would involve editing the protected question notice with this wording. Also, this is a bit more technical, but it would also involve changing the privileges list for users with the bonus to show answering protected questions as a separate, 110-rep privilege. (Again, this is not a request to do any of those, but rather to obtain general community consensus before filing separate requests to do any of these.)

Thoughts on this?

1 Answer 1


On the other hand for a user without the bonus - the magic number is 10 rep on that site. Its not 110 reputation.

That is to say 5 edits, 2 upvotes on questions or one answer upvote on the site and this means more here than the 100 reputation bonus.

Saying "110 reputation" is going to cause more confusion. It has, is, and is still 10 reputation.

If we must be utterly precise "You must have 10 reputation earned from actions on this site" would work.

  • Did you read the entire proposed wording, and compare it to the current wording? Apr 26, 2018 at 6:36
  • I kinda did. The shortness of my answer is entirely quite simply cause the question seems overcomplicated. It might be worth understanding what I'm saying while pondering whether I read what you did. Apr 26, 2018 at 6:47
  • "I earned 10 reputation, but then gave some of my bonus rep in a bounty. Why did it deduct from my earned rep rather than my bonus rep?" Apr 26, 2018 at 6:48

You must log in to answer this question.

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