Badge suggestion: "Conformist" - Made an edit to ones own post that resulted in people removing their down-votes.

This is to encourage people to fix their bad posts.

Maybe require a certain number of down-votes to be reversed, but not too many or it would very hard to attain.

[Edit] Thanks for all the positive feedback.

Some people have mentioned that they don't like the name I suggested ("Conformist"), and actually I agree with that; it's just that I couldn't think of anything else at the time. I've thought a bit more about it now, so here are some alternative badge names I've come up with:

  • Adaptability
  • Eager To Please
  • Fine Tuning
  • Reconciliation

My favorite is Adaptability, but I thought I'd put up everything I'd thought of. (if nothing else, you might want more than name anyway if you want to make silver/gold versions).

[EDIT] Returning to this after a while. Editing to put the better suggestions for the name into the title.

I really like "Responsive", as suggested by Dronz, but "Quality control" was another good alternative name suggestion.

[EDIT] Resurecting this thread because I've just had another post where this happened to me. I was given a -1 for an answer I gave, and the user posted a comment why he had given it (which was actually a fairly minor point). I made an edit to the answer to correct that point, and he has subsequently removed his -1 vote.

So it does happen.

This topic is still attracting up-votes so it seems quite popular, but I haven't heard anything official as to whether the SO team are interested in implementing it or not? Any comments guys?

  • This is a great suggestion.
    – jjnguy
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 15:46
  • 36
    Would this require down-voters to be notified of edits so that they could review their decision? I don't usually revisit an answer I've voted on to see if anything's changed.
    – ChrisF Mod
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 15:59
  • 3
    good idea, but i second @ChrisF's concern. How often do people stick around long enough to remove their upvotes?
    – Kip
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 16:07
  • 1
    Granted that makes it a bit harder to get, but I think it would happen enough to make it acheiveable. Also, when you make an edit, the post moves back to the top of the home page, so there is some visibility of the change happening without having to actually reload it.
    – Spudley
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 16:12
  • 11
    @Kip Rarity isn't a bad thing. How often do people post answers worth 20+ scores onto -5 score questions? Even if difficult to attain, it still actually promotes a good behavior (editing a post to remove flaws)
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 16:14
  • 9
    @ChrisF - if you comment when you downvote (I don't know if this is a habit you have or not) then the poster can @ reply to you to let you know they've changed their post in response to your down-vote/concerns.
    – jball
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 16:18
  • @jball - I tend to comment rather than down-voting :) However, if you search meta for posts about encouraging comments with down-votes you'll find opinion fairly evenly divided about it's merits. Some swear they don't want to comment as it avoids "revenge down-votes". Having this badge won't necessarily convince people to change their habits.
    – ChrisF Mod
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 16:21
  • 1
    @ChrisF: downvoters usually leave a comment to explain the reason, and the user can reply to the comment thereby notifying the downvoter. Even if this works only in 10% of cases, it's enough. Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 16:28
  • 2
    for what it's worth, in terms of how attainable the badge would be, I was inspired to post this because it happened to me just now: I made a post, it was downvoted with a comment. I edited the post in response and replied to the comment, and the down-voter replied and removed his down-vote. So it can happen. Whether it would be common or not... I don't know. But I guess that would be the difference between whether it would be bronze, silver or gold.
    – Spudley
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 16:31
  • @ChrisF - fun to see that your question came up when I searched meta :) Obviously it's not a new topic for you.
    – jball
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 16:32
  • @Kop - I'd question the "usually" but the goal is to get improved answers.
    – ChrisF Mod
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 16:33
  • 2
    Not so sure about the proposed name, but +1 for the great idea!
    – Jon Seigel
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 17:43
  • 1
    I like this idea. I would support its creation if the higher powers wanted to add it.
    – Troggy
    Commented Dec 3, 2010 at 18:35
  • 1
    Other names... the [Self-Improvement] badge? The [Your Feedback is Important to Us] badge? The [Quality Control] badge? Maybe [Committed]? [Dedicated]? [Follow-Through]? [Good Edit]?
    – Pops
    Commented Dec 11, 2010 at 0:18
  • 4
    I like this idea, especially if it's not called "Conformist". :-) How about "Responsive"?
    – Dronz
    Commented Dec 14, 2010 at 20:35

4 Answers 4


Actually, what would be even better (from my point of view!) would be a badge for people who downvote an answer, then after it's edited, remove their downvote. That would encourage downvoters to recognise responses to their criticism.

I'm motivated about this because of a case today: i posted an answer with some code which had a bug and some questionable style; someone downvoted me and pointed it out, we had a long back-and-forth about the matter, and i fixed the problems. But he didn't remove his downvote. I thought that was a trifle inconsiderate. A badge might encourage people not to do it.

(In this particular case, there was still at least one feature of my answer he still objected to, so perhaps he has good reason to maintain the downvote. But in general, you know, etc.)

  • 7
    yes. perhaps both sides have a good case for a badge.
    – Spudley
    Commented Apr 1, 2011 at 19:35
  • Agree with @Spudley, this is a second very nice badge suggestion... But I think there's still no way for us to get notified of a modification on the downvoted post and only way to know it would be through manually tracking them as I've indicated in my answer - which sucks a lot for complying with this badge.
    – cregox
    Commented May 27, 2011 at 10:27
  • 1
    This other badge could be called "Good Critic" or "Responsive Critic". Something in those terms. :)
    – cregox
    Commented May 27, 2011 at 10:29
  • @Cawas: I agree that if you don't get notified of edits to answers (and questions) you've downvoted, this badge would be unfair, or at least unhelpful. But that would be a useful feature, so perhaps we should have it, and then have this badge. Commented May 27, 2011 at 11:10
  • Yes, that's precisely what I meant to imply, Tom.
    – cregox
    Commented May 27, 2011 at 14:44
  • There is a problem with that. Somebody can downvote a question and then wait until it is edited and then un-downvote just to get the badge. Commented May 10, 2012 at 15:00

Adding to it, I would suggest a way to keep track of down votes, at least. A natural (and already requested) later improvement would be getting notified of modifications on posts you downvoted (though I'm afraid we're quite far from having it).

edit: Thanks to DMA57361's comment on another (already mentioned) question, here's how to see your downvotes: https://meta.stackoverflow.com/reputation and using audit helper script you can see it much better! So we're really missing just the notifications in this suggestion.


It is an interesting idea, but to me feels a bit to rare to be a silver badge. I could accept it being a bronze badge.

Also it feels like it is encouraging a fairly complex workflow, that said we already have "Peer Pressure" so this badge could be an interesting complement.

  • 2
    thanks for the input. I thought rarity would make it more likely to be a silver? ("bronze is for basic use of the site; they're easy to get")
    – Spudley
    Commented May 27, 2011 at 10:14

How do you distinguish the following two scenarios:

  • User posts an earnest, but bad, answer. Gets downvote(s). Improves answer. Gets upvote(s) and badge.
  • User posts a terrible answer to attract downvotes to get this badge. Gets downvote(s). Posts a real, and genuinely useful answer. Gets upvote(s) and badge.

Improving bad answers is a good behavior that should be encouraged, but posting good answers the first time is still better. This badge would encourage initially giving lousy answers as much as it encourages improving them.

This is similar to potential problems with the peer pressure badge encouraging gaming, and Tumbleweed which is more of a consolation prize than encouraging desirable behavior.

  • Its a good question, and I can see that there is potential to game the system. But that applies to most systems of any complexity. I think in this case, gaming the system to gain badges would likely come at the expense of rep points: if you're posting bad answers deliberately to get down-votes, in the hope that they'll get reversed when you turn it into a good answer... well yes, you may win some badges, but the odds are that most down voters would not reverse their vote, so you'd be left stuck with minus scores and negative rep. I think that's a sufficient deterrent.
    – Spudley
    Commented Jun 19, 2012 at 22:15
  • The easiest way to minimize gaming is to make the badge non-repeatable. Will it still happen? Sure. But only once per user, at the most. Commented Jun 19, 2012 at 23:50
  • @LessPop_MoreFizz Agreed, but that also makes the badge less compelling. We want users to fix all their bad answers, not just do it once.
    – blahdiblah
    Commented Jun 20, 2012 at 2:36
  • @blahdiblah The point is to teach users the habit. Hopefully the up votes will be sufficient to keep them doing it. Commented Jun 20, 2012 at 2:37

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