I don't care, and I can only imagine it's very much [status-bydesign] to preserve some real estate (though larger numbers use a smaller font anyhow). Still, just in case it matters, especially for downvotes:

When the number of up or down votes exceeds 99, then the leading plus or minus sign is not shown in the vote split:

+99 up / -3 down     100 up / -1 down     1147 up / 107 down

The sign is also "missing" in the Ajax response. For the above images, the JSON results:






If the JavaScript code ever relies on the minus sign (like it once seemed to do) then in theory this might be an issue.


This is by design so the numbers fit more easily in the available space.

  • 13
    So why not make the JSON feed without the sign? That's one thing I absolutely hate about all JSON feeds on Stack Overflow... They depend too much on the VIEW, when in fact they should be DATA (model)... Especially the Flair JSON. – Andrew Moore Apr 5 '10 at 2:52
  • @andrew how so? +7 is a number just like -3. – Jeff Atwood Apr 27 '10 at 1:22
  • 13
    +7 is a string... 7 is an integer. And if the + disappears when it is too long to display, then you are passing VIEW instead of DATA. – Andrew Moore Apr 29 '10 at 16:04
  • 5
    So if "down":"-3" is a downvote, couldn't "down":"107" be mistaken for an upvote? – coredump Jun 25 '16 at 10:27
  • @coredump The key already tells you it is a "down"-vote, there is no mistaking unless you take it out of context. And you could just use value.up - Math.abs(value.down) to compute the net vote. (And I think the JSON should return numbers instead of strings, and don't include any sign at all). – kennytm Jun 26 '16 at 9:27
  • 4
    @kennytm I agree, but that's ugly. Bugs thrive with things like this. – coredump Jun 26 '16 at 9:31
  • +7 and 7 are two representations of the number known in the English language as "seven" – Pac0 Mar 20 '18 at 8:14
  • 4
    @Pac0: But -7 and 7 are not two representations of the number known in the English language as "minus seven". – Lightness Races BY-SA 3.0 Mar 20 '18 at 20:26

Jeff Atwood's answer does not jibe with the data...

  1. The UI must already deal with 5-digit numbers, WITH a plus sign:
    Largest vote count so far

  2. This means the UI could easily handle a 5-digit downvote number, WITH a minus sign.
    Mockup (with page viewed at 200%):
    What the UI should be

  3. But, in fact, there are no posts with more than 400 downvotesSee meta for the worst. So, we are orders of magnitude away from what the UI must already handle.

You must log in to answer this question.

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