All regular Stack Exchange sites (including Meta Stack Exchange) have automatic question and answer bans. If a user posts enough poorly received content, they get banned from asking and/or answering.

Things work a little differently on per-site Metas. The FAQ states that one can be post-banned on Meta:

... but the threshold of votes in the auto ban calculation is reduced ...

Then there's this answer which states that

... the quality bans are disabled on all meta sites, ... (with Meta Stack Exchange being the only exception)


All sites, including their meta sites, have an automatic answer ban.

which seems to indicate that all per-site metas have answer bans, but none have question bans.

Finally, there's this recent comment by a Stack Overflow moderator:

... There's no question ban on MSO, but there are question bans on at least some other Meta sites. There are answer bans on MSO.

There appears to be conflicting information here, from various reputable sources (moderators, staff, etc).

So my question is, what's the actual situation currently? Is there a difference between asking and answering (in terms of being banned), and if so, why? Are there different post ban rules on different per-site Metas, and if so, which ones?

This is not a duplicate of the current duplicate targets:

  • 5
    @Rubén No, it doesn't. The only part of that FAQ that talks about per site metas is what I've quoted in the question. There's nothing about the differences on how post-bans work on different per-site metas in that FAQ.
    – cigien
    Apr 2, 2021 at 18:55
  • 1
    You might reword the title and the last statement of the question body to make clear that you want to focus on the what than the why
    – Rubén
    Apr 2, 2021 at 19:21
  • @Rubén Actually, I figured I would make it about both "what" and "why" equally, so I edited the last sentence accordingly.
    – cigien
    Apr 2, 2021 at 19:23
  • 3
    @Rob No, it doesn't. That question discusses whether post-bans should work differently on meta as opposed to regular sites. This question is about the difference in how post-bans work between metas.
    – cigien
    Apr 2, 2021 at 19:24
  • @Rob Yes, that does seem to be the same question, but the answers don't seem to match up to what I've been told. I'll edit my question to include that though, thanks for the link. Also, those questions don't seem to discuss why there are differences between answers and questions bans.
    – cigien
    Apr 2, 2021 at 19:33
  • 1
    cigien, your welcome. When the Sword of Damocles (you are in the Review Queue) hangs ready it's on the person to clearly avoid it - by writing a clear single question, not by massaging or dodging to avoid the outcome. --- On Meta Stack Exchange close reasons can be differently put forth; the requirement for either any answer, or if there is any answer for a different question is sufficient to match - in the case of Announcement or FAQ duplicate proposals it can be the answer (or lack of one) that is enough.
    – Rob
    Apr 2, 2021 at 19:46
  • 2
    The answer you linked, to the question Is there even an automatic ban on meta?, states: Note that the [question] quality bans are disabled on all meta sites, regardless of whether the parent site has them enabled or not (with Meta Stack Exchange being the only exception). That text was edited into the answer by an SE employee. Apr 2, 2021 at 20:01
  • @SonictheCuriouserHedgehog No, not really, I linked to that post in the question, and at least to me, it's not clear at all what the answer is. As far as I can tell, all per-site Metas have answer bans, but some per-site metas have question bans while others don't. There's no indication of which sites have these bans, and why there is any difference between per-site Metas, or between questions and answers.
    – cigien
    Apr 2, 2021 at 20:05
  • I've edited my comment since you last loaded it. As that answer states, question quality bans are disabled on all per-site metas, and only enabled on main sites and Meta Stack Exchange. Apr 2, 2021 at 20:07
  • @SonictheCuriouserHedgehog Ah, I didn't see that. So you're saying Makyen's comment about some Metas having question bans is just wrong? It's certainly possible, but in my experience I wouldn't bet on it. Given that the edit by the SE staff is over 6 years old, maybe something has changed in the interim?
    – cigien
    Apr 2, 2021 at 20:09
  • I'd edit this to clearly quote from that answer that sentence, and ask two things: 1. whether or not things have changed since that text was edited in, and 2. why question bans are/were disabled on per-site metas. Apr 2, 2021 at 20:10
  • @SonictheCuriouserHedgehog Ok, that makes sense. I'll rewrite the question to focus on those aspects. Thanks for the feedback.
    – cigien
    Apr 2, 2021 at 20:11
  • @SonictheCuriouserHedgehog Ok, I've rewritten the question as you (and others) have suggested. Is there anything else I can do to improve it as it makes its way through the reopen queue?
    – cigien
    Apr 2, 2021 at 20:34
  • @SonictheCuriouserHedgehog Oh, I had no idea I should be that explicit about enumerating every single suggested target and explaining why each of them is inappropriate. I'd sort of assumed that there was some onus on the close-voters as well to ensure their dupe suggestions are correct. I'll keep that in mind for MSE; thanks a lot for the edit.
    – cigien
    Apr 2, 2021 at 20:46

1 Answer 1


Some information based on current site settings:

So my question is, what's the actual situation currently?

The quality blocks (both question and answer blocks) are enabled on all sites, including all per-site Metas. The only exception is Meta Stack Overflow, where the question block is disabled.

The threshold to hit the block is more difficult to reach only on Meta Stack Exchange, and only for questions. All per-site Metas use the same thresholds as the main sites.

I don't know if/when this changed. I'm pretty sure the question block was turned off on per-site Metas at some point. But per the current settings values, they are not, and I don't know where a record of the change would even be at.

Is there a difference between asking and answering (in terms of being banned), and if so, why?

Getting blocked from questions is slightly different than getting blocked from answers, but not by much. I can say that getting out of an answer block is excessively easy, but cannot divulge anything further than that.

  • To be clear, are the thresholds for answer bans also reduced here on Meta.SE, or are they the same as on all other sites? Apr 3, 2021 at 1:01
  • 1
    @Sonic The answer block thresholds are the same network-wide and not configurable as designed. We generally do not care about people hitting the answer block because, as I pointed out in my answer, it is extremely easy to get out of. (E.g. the answer block has also never been updated to grant a 6-month free post to match the question block, because meh.)
    – animuson StaffMod
    Apr 3, 2021 at 1:09
  • 1
    Phew, good to know that there are question bans on Metas other than MSO before posting :) Could you also give some explanation of why there's a difference between the thresholds for questions vs answers, and why one is easier to get out of than the other? I understand you can't divulge details of what that difference is.
    – cigien
    Apr 3, 2021 at 1:12
  • 2
    @cigien They target very different things. A user who hits an answer block uses the site very differently than a user who hits a question block, and the thresholds are designed to account for the different types of users that hit each type of block.
    – animuson StaffMod
    Apr 3, 2021 at 1:15

You must log in to answer this question.

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