I've looked through a number of the "Vote too old to be changed" questions, but I think this one's different.

I gave a downvote to an answer I thought had a critical defect, and I left a comment describing the defect. The answer was edited to satisfy my criticism, but it was done within the short grace period where edits aren't recorded as such. When I try to cancel my downvote I get the error - "Your vote is now locked in unless this answer is edited" - but it was edited!

In reference to this answer: How to generate different random numbers in a loop in C++?

  • 2
    Hmm, what a delightful edge case
    – Earlz
    Commented Feb 7, 2011 at 23:44
  • Grace period edit is not a "real" edit, as it does not create a new revision and can't be tracked. By all means, such edit is still part of the original revision edited during grace period. So, not a bug. Commented Aug 12, 2014 at 6:31
  • 1
    @ShadowWizard Whether its a bug or not is really semantics. Its certainly undesired behaviour. Buggy-by-design at best Commented Aug 12, 2014 at 8:00
  • @Richard fear we'll have to disagree about it, you can start new feature request asking to change the current design. With Jeff gone, it got a chance to at least be considered. Commented Aug 12, 2014 at 8:53
  • @ShadowWizard not if it gets closed as a duplicate instantly Commented Aug 12, 2014 at 18:30
  • @JanDvorak I'll vote to reopen since this one here is a bug report. Commented Aug 12, 2014 at 18:59
  • @ShadowWizard thanks :-) Hope it finally gets fixed Commented Aug 12, 2014 at 19:00
  • @Jan well, I got a different opinion but won't stand in its way. :) Commented Aug 12, 2014 at 19:01
  • @ShadowWizard actually, I'd prefer to get rid of vote locking entirely, but the dev team is afraid of strategic voting. Commented Aug 12, 2014 at 19:04
  • What does it take to get this fixed?
    – shmosel
    Commented Oct 31, 2016 at 21:01
  • @shmosel a tag of status-bydesign means that they've looked at it and decided they don't consider it a bug, so it will never be fixed. Now this question is old enough that it could be reconsidered, but they don't have a mechanism for that. I don't have any answers. Commented Nov 1, 2016 at 0:46
  • FYI, since 2015, commenting on someone else's post will now break the grace period, making the specific problem here a non-issue. There's still the edge case of votes changing if there's no comment posted, though. Commented Mar 7 at 20:25

3 Answers 3


This is indeed a very annoying bug which I experienced myself a few times.

The proposed solution by Richard doesn't really look like an answer to me, it's just a workaround (no offense to Richard, this is the only possible solution right now). Secondly, it will reveal the one reverting his vote since his name is on the edit.

The solution seems to me to register internally whether the question / answer was edited during the grace period and allow voting afterwards.


Just edit the answer yourself, then roll it back...

  • 2
    That doesn't eliminate the bug, it's just a work-around. Very sneaky though, if it works. Commented Feb 8, 2011 at 2:47
  • @Mark It works. I've done it several times for this same problem. Commented Feb 8, 2011 at 2:54
  • For now I'm going to leave it just in case the SO crew wants to have a look at the current status. Commented Feb 8, 2011 at 3:13
  • @Mark no argument with that. Just presenting the current workaround Commented Feb 8, 2011 at 3:16

This is by design -- edits in the 5 minute grace period are treated as if the post always existed that way.

  • 11
    I know the 5 minute grace period is by design, and I've taken advantage of it many times; thank you. But can I assume the bug is not by design? If you were to classify it as not worth fixing I'd understand. Commented Feb 8, 2011 at 14:37
  • @mark it's not a bug, it's by design. I recommend not voting on anything only a few minutes old as it might change underneath you. Commented Feb 8, 2011 at 15:55
  • 2
    I know you're not around any more to see this, but I had a thought I wanted to record. Your advice is impractical because I want to vote as early as possible, so it will influence others considering the answer in its current form. Commented Sep 18, 2013 at 18:18
  • 16
    If this is by design than the design is buggy.
    – user219993
    Commented Jun 13, 2014 at 13:58
  • 7
    Luckily this post is older than 5 mins, so I can downvote without the risk that Jeff edits it to something sensible underneath me. Commented Aug 12, 2014 at 15:16

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