Down voting a question gives -2 rep to the asker, but up voting gives +5.

Since the up votes are halved on questions, why the down votes are not halved as well? Specially since they gives no penalty to the down voter.

  • 1
    Why should it be proportional? Jul 7 '11 at 19:49
  • 2
    @Bill I can see some logic there. If questions aren't important enough to award +10 per upvote, are they important enough to have the same penalty per downvote as answers?
    – Adam Lear StaffMod
    Jul 7 '11 at 19:55
  • @Anna: See my answer for my interpretation of the (somewhat arbitrary) numbers. Jul 7 '11 at 19:58
  • possible duplicate of Should a down vote on an answer be worth -4?
    – Cody Gray
    Jul 8 '11 at 7:07
  • @Code not really. He is asking -4 for answers Jul 8 '11 at 17:52

You're talking about two different things. The +5 for a question upvote is a reward for asking a good question, but the -2 for a downvote is a penalty for asking a bad one. We want to encourage good answers more than good questions, so answer upvotes are worth more. But we want to discourage bad questions just as much, so the penalty for downvotes are the same.

  • 4
    Technically speaking, aren't bad questions discouraged more than bad answers, since there is no penalty on the person casting the downvote? Jul 7 '11 at 20:06
  • 1
    Small problem with that is answers can be deleted, while questions can't (under certain circumstances), therefore the penalty for bad question can be severe. Jul 7 '11 at 20:08
  • @Chris: It depends on how you look at it. People are more likely to use downvotes on questions, so they may be discouraged more often, but for each downvote they're discouraged by the same amount. Yet another way to look at it is proportionally (10/2 vs. 5/2), which gives you a stiffer penalty on question downvotes. On the whole, I'd say yes, technically bad questions are discouraged more than bad answers. I think that's okay though, since downvoted answers sink to the bottom of the page, while bad questions do not. Jul 7 '11 at 20:12
  • @VJo: I don't see that as a problem. You can either edit a bad question to make it better (if it has a good answer, for example) or flag it for a moderator to delete. Jul 7 '11 at 20:14

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