I don't see much point in the comment rate limit in general, and the rate limit should at least be smoothed out to allow reading several comments on one post, then upvoting more than one. Still, I understand the rationale behind declining this feature request: it would make comments easier to use.

But there's a case when the comment rate limit is not only annoying, but also counter-productive. Consider:

  1. I write a comment and post it.
  2. When I post, I discover a new comment, posted seconds before mine.
  3. I read this comment and realize it's similar to mine.
  4. I decide to delete my comment (ok) and upvote the earlier one.
  5. I need to wait 5 seconds before upvoting the earlier comment.

What I learn from the system's reaction is that I shouldn't remove my duplicate comment. Which I'm pretty sure is not intended. So, at least, don't count a comment deletion and a comment upvote against the same rate limit.


1 Answer 1


Comment votes are meant to be used sparingly for those comments which really should be seen by everyone visiting the question or answer to which they are attached. The rate limit is meant to encourage users to avoid the practice of merely upvoting every comment they find interesting, and only upvote those very few comments that are outstanding.

5 seconds is not very long at all, but if the comment is that exceptional, waiting an additional 5 seconds to be able to upvote it is probably worth it.

  • 4
    I can't tell whether you're arguing for my feature request (because you're emphasizing the justification behind it), against my feature request (because you seem to be trying to write a counterpoint), or just saying something general about the rate limit that's not related to my feature request. Commented Apr 17, 2011 at 20:22
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    @Gilles I'm saying that if waiting 5 seconds between deleting your comment and upvoting the other comment is too long for you, and your time is too precious to waste, then chances are good that the comment isn't worth upvoting. Don't waste time upvoting interesting comments. Upvote only those comments that are truly noteworthy.
    – Pollyanna
    Commented Apr 17, 2011 at 20:31
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    If I essentially took the time to write that first comment, except that someone did it first, it's pretty obvious I consider it worth upvoting. At the moment, the choice is between leaving my duplicate comment and having to wait. Having to wait is the system's way of discouraging me, so I conclude that I should leave the duplicate. Commented Apr 17, 2011 at 20:48
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    @Gilles Interesting! I make a ton of comments that I don't think are worth upvoting, knowing that anyone who is really interested in the post will read all the comments. Anywho, I shouldn't be telling you how to vote - the system has votes, use them as you will. The delays across all comment actions (votes, deletes, flags, and posting new comments) are to suggest that comments are not a primary function, and should be used judiciously. If you don't have time to wait, and it's important to upvote the other comment, then it seems reasonable to upvote the other comment and leave your duplicate.
    – Pollyanna
    Commented Apr 17, 2011 at 21:40
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    The rate limit discourages a useful form of voting - reading through all the comments and then going back to click the (more than one) comment that deserved attention. Regardless, the UI doesn't make any connection between comment deletion and upvotes and it is jarring to find that one affects the other. Commented Mar 14, 2012 at 21:52

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