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If an alternate account earns 200 reputation and gets the association bonus, then the alternate account is merged with a different account that also has earned the association bonus, do both bonuses count after the merge?

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    Association bonus is bound to a specific account. – πάντα ῥεῖ Apr 18 at 20:44
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    @πάνταῥεῖ what does that mean? I can't earn an association bonus on two different accounts? – Jodast Apr 18 at 20:46
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Merging doesn't work the way you are thinking it does.

As part of the merge, everything is combined together. All the posts end up on a single profile, and your network account only has a single "HasAssociationBonus" flag attached to it. It's simply not possible to have multiple association bonuses flagged to an account.

We do not simply combine reputation values together as part of a merge. There are too many factors that can occur from a merge. In particular, up- and down- votes that would now be cast to yourself are hard deleted from the database. As well, accepts to yourself would no longer contribute reputation. Things that happened on the same day may now cause reputation caps. And so on.

Instead, once everything is transferred to the new account, we run a full reputation recalculation across the account. It will completely redo your reputation history as if everything had always been on the one account and correct any discrepancies. The process can only ever trigger a single association bonus award for the account based on that one flag being on your account, so no, you would never achieve multiple bonuses.

  • What happens if a user creates a second account and edits something they posted with the first account, and the edit is approved (by two reviewers), and then the accounts are merged?  I don’t have an example handy, but I believe that I’ve seen the resultant merged account retain the 2 reputation points they acquired by having a suggested edit accepted. – G-Man Apr 19 at 21:22
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    @G-Man The reputation is retained, because the "votes" are not from the same user. It's something we just didn't consider important enough to try and invalidate. A very small number of users keep reputation that way, and when they do, the vast majority of them only keep 2 reputation. – animuson Apr 19 at 21:32

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