I filed a bug on Meta about the voting mechanism across browser tabs/windows which is always reproducible.

But I got a downvote for that (and one upvote for what it matters).

How should one interpret downvotes (and upvotes) on a bug report? Is there an unwritten convention about this?

  • Just read my answer. – Ladybug Killer Nov 29 '09 at 21:41
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    +1 good question. should probably be tagged [about-bugs] or [meta-bug] instead of [bug] though. – quack quixote Nov 29 '09 at 22:10

It's questionable what you've described is technically a bug. I say this because most Websites don't act with complete consistency when you start using one session across multiple windows. It's just accepted.

So what you've described is arguably a feature request and one that 1-2 users have disagreed with, for whatever reason.

I wouldn't take it personally but you are right that some kind of explanation would be nice. On Meta it typically means "I disagree". On SO it's more of an issue I think.

  • +1 - Seems a fair explanation, and I already stuck to the "I disagree / I agree" meaning by upvoting/downvoting the answers I agreed or disagreed with (at least in this thread). I of course feel different about the bug (otherwise I would have not filed it as bug) but hey... the world is beautiful because people is different! :) – user138932 Nov 29 '09 at 23:41

I dispute that your bug question is in fact reproducible, though, which makes this question sort of moot.

  • (1) Reproducibility: you were right; the description you read was not reproducible. It took me some more trials before I could sort out what IMO is wrong (see updated description of the bug). (2) This very question (about the meaning of downvotes if a bug is reproducible): I hold is a valid one: the question is not specific to the bug I filed. It is genearl about downvotes on reproducible bugs. – user138932 Nov 30 '09 at 12:58

In general, assume upvotes on a bug report are generic-community-support (unless comments suggest otherwise), and downvotes indicate the community finds something wrong with the bug report. Hopefully downvoters have left comments indicating what they've found lacking -- it could be as simple as poor formatting, or it could be more complicated, like a newbie misunderstanding the use of a common Trilogy feature.

In this particular case, interpret it as "user community thinks the bug report is invalid, because bug reporter doesn't quite comprehend the expected behavior". You're right, the behavior you describe is reproducible; congratulations. But you've misunderstood the purpose of the widgets that you think are buggy. They don't work in the way you expect them to work, so your bug report isn't correct.

  • @~quack - While I undestand and agree with your second paragraph (the general explanation), I disagree with the first (this particular case): it is not about understanding the purpose of the widget, it is about the widget stating something that is not true (your vote is too old to be changed) where you can actually change it by simply using the button in the other window – user138932 Nov 29 '09 at 23:30
  • i see you've updated the steps-to-reproduce in your other question, but i still think you're misunderstanding how the vote/unvote operation works. – quack quixote Nov 30 '09 at 0:04
  • I updated once more the bug description. Hope now is more clear. There is however something strange going on with votes: about one hour ago I downvoted this very same answer (the points where 0) now I re-click on the downvote to remove my downvote (your counter went back to 1). I downvoted it again (3 seconds later than my second "undo vote") and now I get "vote too old to be changed" (what? 3 seconds?! does not sound like too old to me, especially given that it left me change it after about 1 hour since my first click!). :-/ – user138932 Nov 30 '09 at 0:20
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    PS: I know that if an answer is edited I can change my vote. But this is about the "age" of my vote, so if I now say: this answer is OK, why can't I say 3 seconds later "wait a minute... I clicked in the wrong place!" ... well... will file another bug on this! – user138932 Nov 30 '09 at 0:23
  • Somebody else already filed the same bug: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/21462/… – user138932 Nov 30 '09 at 0:26

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