I've just been confused by the following reputation mismatch while analyzing the (at first) strange effect of me upvoting a question on a Stack Exchange meta site without an apparent result on the users reputation:

Reputation mismatch on Stack Exchange meta site http://img443.imageshack.us/img443/379/metareputation.png

It took me a moment to figure out the design rationale behind the Stack Exchange meta site reputation system from the respective FAQ:

Reputation here is entirely derived from the parent website, and synchronized hourly. Your reputation here is the same as your reputation on the parent website. Votes here do not affect your reputation on the parent site. However, you can earn badges here on the meta site.

This decision is appreciated in general (though I haven't really thought it through yet), however, there is obviously a need for improvement regarding the reputation graph/tab in order to not confuse the unaware user like me ;) Unfortunately this seems not exactly easy:

  • Displaying the reputation from the parent posts implies a disconnect regarding the meta posts
  • Removing the tab/graph implies a usability pattern mismatch regarding user expectation as well as loosing a sometimes useful visualization
  • Displaying both in some way would likely make things just more complicated/confusing even
  • Other options ...

Ad hoc I'd prefer to remove it until something better comes up, YMMV of course.

Has this reputation system change been discussed here already (couldn't find anything immediately other than Jeffs respective answer to How does reputation between the main site and its meta work on SE 2.0?) and/or does anybody have an idea how to surface this design reputation graph wise in a clever and especially less confusing way?


We have removed the reputation graph from child meta sites - it doesn't make sense to be there since no reputation is earned. This will be in the next deployment later this evening.

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    +1 for the quick response :) [well, tomorrow, hit my daily vote limit already ;)] – Steffen Opel Jul 13 '10 at 17:03
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    But... we do get reputation! How am I supposed to check how I'm competing against Jeff Atwood at the Gaming Meta in my invisible worthless arbitrary number now? – Grace Note Jul 13 '10 at 17:07

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