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Why is 15 reputation required to upvote?

Twice now I've googled a question and the answer has been on stackoverflow. Both times my question was answered and I wanted to up-vote the answer that I found helpful, but I can't do so until I have a 15 reputation. So here I am, asking why one must have a reputation to simply upvote? Of course, I now have a screen showing me related questions, the very first one list is "Why is 15 reputation required to upvote? [closed]", but I'm still going to ask this repetitious question, just so I can start getting reputation, so that I can avoid repetition in the future and upvote an existing helpful answer, to an existing question.

  • 2
    I upvoted this to get you closer to 15 rep.
    – Amy B
    Mar 25, 2010 at 20:13
  • 1
    Belongs on meta
    – fbrereto
    Mar 25, 2010 at 20:14
  • 2
    Wait, you saw that someone's already asked this question and it got closed, and your reaction was to ask it anyway?
    – Cascabel
    Mar 25, 2010 at 20:15
  • "reputation" or "repitition"?
    – gabe
    Mar 25, 2010 at 20:15
  • 1
    There you go, you are beyond 15 points no matter if a number of people downvote this question. Just make sure it's less than 4 downvotes! Mar 25, 2010 at 20:15
  • 1
    stop saying repetition
    – juan
    Mar 25, 2010 at 20:19
  • 2
    Gathering pity upvotes in action.
    – random
    Mar 25, 2010 at 23:18

2 Answers 2


If rep weren't required for upvotes, people could easily create multiple accounts and upvote themselves. Now, they at least need to cross some threshold which means contribute something to the community, before they start cheating.

  • 1
    Who cares? Rep isn't the end game here. The cheaters would either get a few hundred rep from their multiple accounts, or it would be patently obvious they were gaming and the accounts would be closed. Mar 25, 2010 at 20:21
  • Perhaps there could be a middle ground. For example, if you don't already have reputation, you could be limited to 5 up or down votes a day. Such a system would have more than resolved my situation, where the question I had had already been asked (that's one upvote) and it had been answered (a second upvote). The question that I had today only had the one answer. The question I had last week had several different answers that in combination helped me (hence, more than two votes would have been useful on that account). continued ...
    – A Lion
    Mar 25, 2010 at 23:14
  • With such a system, it would deter sabotage, but I would have been able to acknowledge my appreciation to both the previous asker and responders, and the 53+ individuals who have had to read this, or the other similar questions, wouldn't waste their time.
    – A Lion
    Mar 25, 2010 at 23:15

Do you realize how easy it is to get 15 rep? You could do it in less time than it took you to write that question.

  • 2
    Yes and no. On SO, I got enough rep fairly quickly, but on SU, it took a month to get over 1 rep since no one was upvoting my answers even though they were noted as beneficial.
    – Tom A
    Mar 25, 2010 at 20:17

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