When another users submitted a very low-quality answer, I flagged it as useless. The user retaliated against me with a down vote, and I said something to the effect of: 'If you don't like my question, can you tell me why?'

I think down-voting isn't useful unless a question is truly low-quality, and you have a good reason to say: "Other users should not see this", but there's a strain of chronic down-voting in the community. I do a lot of research and try to submit easy-to-answer questions after I've given my best efforts to complete all of the work, myself. I work hard on the formatting. I edit my writing. So, I think most of my questions are not low-quality and should have attention, with very few exceptions.

Anyway, I got a 90-point ding/ban.

There has certainly been an intermittent pattern of abuse by users (some people have multiple accounts, I'm sure, for example); however, this abuse is also moderated with growing efficiency.

My question is:

If a ban is temporary, wouldn't it be better to not give them the additional stress of worrying about a permanent ban? Shouldn't it be very clear: "This is a permanent ban." Or, "This is a 2-week ban."

Something important for users who find this post to keep in mind: most bans are not permanent; rather, they are temporary, and your privileges come back after the suspension ends. Sometimes, the bans are put in place because of concerns (like your account may have been logged into by an unwanted 3rd party), etc.

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    Moderators cannot arbitrarily remove points from your reputation score. About the only way that can happen is if you had a post flagged as spam and deleted. But without any context, it's impossible to help you here. If you mean that the other person with whom you had a disagreement downvoted a bunch of your posts (say, 9 of them), that could cause you to lose 90 points. But they'll be given back when the automated script runs and detects this vindictive voting practice. Commented Jun 27, 2011 at 5:07
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    Please provide a link to the question. Otherwise it's really hard to tell what's going on.
    – jscs
    Commented Jun 27, 2011 at 5:13
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    Your account is suspended for seven days. Click the link in your profile to learn about suspensions. Your reputation will be recalculated when your suspension is over. Commented Jun 27, 2011 at 5:23
  • Because you mentioned something about an outline of asking questions: How to Ask.
    – Felix
    Commented Jun 27, 2011 at 15:13
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    I like how this question is rated as -15. Who let the 15 trolls out (of their mother's basement) to downvote this question? FIFTEEN TIMES! Sheesh. "This is why we can't have nice things."
    – kevinarpe
    Commented Feb 26, 2013 at 9:48
  • @kevinarpe Yeah, they're total jerks. And the day I come back to this question, a year later, a d-bag op puts me down 950-points for writing 'don't look at my package' in an edit on my own question--one he closed without asking for an edit. I wish there were someone in place that would actually take an iron fist to crappy ops. Sometimes Stack's like a crappy IRC channel: 500 people but nobody talks because the ops curse at people who aren't completely fluent in the topic. It really trashes the community. Don't liter, or the police will shoot you, right? Talk about abuse of authority. Commented Apr 16, 2014 at 9:15

4 Answers 4


You didn't permanently lose the points, you were suspended for a week.

When a user is suspended, they go to 1 reputation point.
Your reputation will come back when you come out of suspension.

  • OH! Well that's fine! That doesn't bother me in the slightest. :) Thanks, Lance. Commented Jun 29, 2011 at 5:34
  • @Wolfpack'08 If you thought this was a good answer, why didn't you accept it? stackoverflow.com/help/someone-answers
    – L_7337
    Commented Apr 5, 2014 at 17:54
  • @L_7337 bump on a 3-year-old question. -15 points: meta account suspended. I think Kevinarpe's comment is what really matters. Commented Apr 9, 2014 at 4:34

It looks like it's from THIS QUESTION.

It even looks like you necro'd it after 9 months to respond to Pekka's comment with such constructive comments as

I think you're annoying.

And it wasn't closed by just a "moderator", it was Jeff who is the founder of the site. I wouldn't make too much fuss about it. Learn from it.

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    So I basically got suspended for something that is tantamount to having been picked up by ajax, right? I mean..., that comment was on the site for all of 2 seconds. Commented Jun 29, 2011 at 5:55
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    Whatever. I guess I need anger management. Commented Jun 29, 2011 at 5:56

I haven't either seen your question nor the answer or the tread you are talking about.

To my opinion the tone in asking and answering has to be all the time objective.

Especially for the asker, he wants something from the community, So even if the answer is "in a very poor way", I would presume that the poster wants to help me and spent some of his valuable time for me.

So the correct way here (IMO) is not to flag the answer as "not an answer", its to ask in comments for clarification, an example and explain why this does not help you(, yet).

And if the answer was really that poor, just ignore it and let the community do their work ...
and flagging is only the last resort.

  • stema, the community does a very poor job of flagging low-quality questions. I can show you the logic behind this statement, if you would like to talk about it. There's no function to ignore users, but I think it would be a great feature. It's the most common way to resolve interpersonal problems on the WWW, but it isn't used by SO for some reason. Flagging shouldn't be a "last resort". It should be something that people are rewarded for doing. Going around and cleaning up other peoples messes is hard and deserving work. What's so ignoble about it? People's sensitivity? Commented Jun 29, 2011 at 5:47
  • Teachers are always satisfied to give a poor explanation that students will accept, and it crystalizes a problem that has made learning difficult. I don't think that I can see eye-to-eye with you on this, but perhaps there will be some inflection point. On the other hand, I think the reason I got suspended is more because I try to interact than because I was rude. I type fast, and I type a lot. Communication is important to me, and I think that's frowned upon by teachers, as well as by computer nerds. I think they want you to stfu, rtfm, etc. It's a monotonous montra that de-inspires, imo Commented Jun 29, 2011 at 5:49

Comment Up Votes don't garner points for anyone. The ten clicks on "this is a great comment" for that comment were simply from other people who agreed with its sentiment.

  • No, sarnold... that's not true. If it were, it would be a very extreme outlier. If you were a moderator, it would be likely that you would have some experience trending, and you would be able to recognize that. Commented Jun 29, 2011 at 6:15
  • Just an example, there's only one response here that had 10 ups, and it's more information than criticism. People don't appreciate criticism that much. It's smurfs or an organized effort. Commented Jun 29, 2011 at 6:17
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    @Fohsap, cody's comment above has had seven people click "this is a great comment". Cody did not earn a single point from that comment. Comments don't influence reputation.
    – sarnold
    Commented Jun 29, 2011 at 8:33

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