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Why can't there be (or is there?) a way to gain credence from one's reputation on one site to be able to do something on another (SE vs. SO)?

As someone who has long consumed StackExchange, StackOverflow, SuperUser, but only within the past few years posted questions or answers, I am confused and frustrated by the whole reputation thing. I understand why reputation exists, but it is frustrating to want to upvote, comment, answer, or whatever, and be told you are not allowed because you don't have sufficient reputation. If I had some new original questions I needed to ask, then I could gain reputation, but "the system" seems to think I am unworthy or clueless to be able to contribute or assess.

Finally I had enough rep (small by most standards) to be able to vote, and maybe even comment(?) on StackOverflow, based on technical questions. But when I went to Stack Exchange for a question on OS X stuff, I have to start over with 1 rep. Seems a bit like a slap in the face, particularly since (so far as I know) some questions could appear either place.

Yes, I have ready folks talking about exchanging bounty and how it is more difficult to earn rep on SE than SO, and I don't claim to know all about bounty and the ins and outs of types of rep. But I do know that I feel as if I have to start over in each meeting place for technical questions, and it is a disincentive (for me) to be involved.

I realize not all (maybe nobody) will agree with my sentiment, but since I only have 1 rep, I guess folks' downvotes won't hurt me, right?

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    There is! It's called the Association bonus. In short, earn 200 rep on any one site and you'll get 100 rep on every other site you join. FAQ is in the duplicate. To be clear, you can answer without reputation on any of our sites with the exception of protected questions which will still require local reputation. The Association Bonus won't get you the rep needed for those.
    – Catija
    Commented Oct 11, 2019 at 4:43
  • Good to know. Thanks. I think I am sitting at 163 on SO, so haven't seen that benefit yet.
    – SteveW
    Commented Oct 11, 2019 at 5:00
  • Realizing my question was marked as a duplicate, even though I didn't find what I recognized as the "original" (which probably just means my search terms were not effective), is there a way that the "Duplicate" notification could include the question that this (or a) question duplicates? That could be beneficial (as the accepted answer) and educational (to see what tags I should have used for search). (I'm a bit nervous about posting that as a separate question as it will undoubtedly get tagged as a duplicate, as well.)
    – SteveW
    Commented Oct 11, 2019 at 5:05
  • It's at the top, below the title but above the question body. The reason why it's there instead of in the notice is because of historical incompatibility. Commented Oct 11, 2019 at 6:32
  • Thanks, @SonictheAnonymousHedgehog. I guess I'm still learning how to read some of this stuff and didn't even look back to the top.
    – SteveW
    Commented Oct 11, 2019 at 12:43

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