With the new capability to vote to delete answers, 20k users now have another kind of content to vote to delete. However, we still are rate-limited to only 5 total delete votes we can cast per day (which seem to apply to both votes on questions and answers).

I understand the reasons for wanting to rate-limit deletion, but with a new class of content to vote on, shouldn't we at least give a few more daily votes to the 20k users? Maybe up this to 10 delete votes a day at the 20k level?

3 Answers 3


Taking out the trash is indeed wholesome; this is being implemented such that you get an extra delete-vote (up to a maximum of 30 per day) for every 1000 rep after getting access to the moderation tools (typically 10k - I can't remember if that varies on beta/SE sites, etc) - so someone with 22k on stackoverflow would get:

  • 5 votes by default
  • 12 extra votes due to rep
  • for an effective 17 delete votes per day

There exists the alternative of rate limiting answer deletion votes separately of question deletion votes.

This appeals to me, but I'm having a hard time articulating why (aside from the part where I don't have to implement it, of course). I'll come back to this later if I can muster a coherent argument.

  • 1
    This is perhaps due to the fact that closed questions become more hidden to users, where "me-too" and "thanks" answers appear to anyone who views a question. There could be more of a reason to delete non-answers than bad questions. They're certainly different content types that are otherwise subject to slightly different rules. Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 21:28
  • 1
    I don't think it's a bad idea; however, it would be inconsistent with all other rate limits (flags, upvotes/downvotes, etc.) That could get confusing. Then again, since we're talking about 20k users, they should probably be able to handle a little nuance like that.
    – Aarobot
    Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 23:19

I don't see why the two numbers should correlate. If anything, because there are more people who can delete answers the number of votes you get should go down. Deletion should be a last resort option, and making it harder to delete a post ought to be the goal.

If you're out of votes and notice a question/answer that absolutely needs deleting, you can still flag it.

  • 6
    Um... That goal is ridiculously easy to achieve - just remove all votes and flags, and deleting a post becomes exceedingly hard. I rather suspect the goal is to make it easy to get rid of noise while minimizing the deletion of useful content.
    – Shog9
    Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 20:39
  • -1. Agree with @Shog9. Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 20:42
  • 3
    I agree that deletion is the last option for content, but it is necessary sometimes to keep the site clean. It looks like the thinking is that giving high-reputation users the ability to vote to delete answers would offload some moderator tasks onto the community. Now that they're entrusting us with this additional responsibility, why reduce the effectiveness of it? Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 21:29
  • +1 - The more users there are that can delete, the fewer delete votes are needed per user (and there are certainly enough users capable of deleting questions on StackOverflow). How many people actually use up all of their 5 delete votes per day?
    – Justin
    Commented Mar 14, 2011 at 2:58

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