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When we started this site in 2014, we encouraged everyone to vote early and often, and people did. Now this site is not young anymore. In the past 5 years, we have seen a steady increase in the number of active users, page views, and posts. Unfortunately, this has not been accompanied by an increase in votes.

Please vote for quality content!

The past 3 months saw the lowest ever amount of voting on this site. This quarter, only 16 users have cast at least 10 votes. This is a problem, because voting is important:

  • Voting distinguishes top quality content from mediocre content
  • Voting helps users find good posts
  • Voting motivates both askers and answerers in continuing to provide good quality content.
  • And voting is free¹!

So, please don't forget to vote!


¹Downvoting answers costs a very small (1 rep) amount of reputation.

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    $\begingroup$ The system favours people who fire out random answers en mass and ignores those who take an hour or so to research an answer. If that continues, i'll be on my way again. $\endgroup$
    – user18411
    Dec 29, 2019 at 8:46
  • $\begingroup$ I agree, writing 20 answers (and getting a single upvote each time from the OP as a thank you) is a far better strategy for getting reputation than a single well researched answer - which arguably has a far greater value to the site. We're rewarding the wrong kind of behaviour. $\endgroup$
    – Will
    Jan 30, 2020 at 21:23
  • $\begingroup$ @Will Your posts seem reasonably well voted for here? $\endgroup$
    – gerrit Mod
    Jan 30, 2020 at 22:21
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks @gerrit, you're right, I'm not complaining that I don't get enough upvotes! I'm suggesting that if I wanted to just gain reputation (for bragging rights, to make it look like I know what I'm doing, whatever) or suffered from a crippling case of Dunning Kruger - the current system wouldn't deal with that. Getting a single upvote per shoddy answer is a more efficient method of gaining reputation than a smaller number of high quality answers. $\endgroup$
    – Will
    Jan 31, 2020 at 8:39
  • $\begingroup$ @Will That is true, and that problem exists throughout the Stack Exchange network and has been frequently complained about. See also the Fastest Gun in the West problem. $\endgroup$
    – gerrit Mod
    Jan 31, 2020 at 8:57

3 Answers 3

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I think we are not doing this correctly. The site stats in Area51 shows we have 2.5 questions per day, whereas "10 questions per day on average is a healthy beta, 5 questions or fewer per day needs some work".

If a user is posting a question and receives no upvotes the user thinks he cannot ask a good question on the site and don't ask more. From the home page today I see many questions with 0 or 1 upvote (sometimes mine) wich I find perfectly valid questions for the site, and so valuable ones.

I know only elaborated questions should be strongly upvoted to differenciate them from not so good questions, but I think it is important one, two or three upvote valid questions to welcome the user and encourage him to ask more questions we need to become a better site. The user receives a message "You earned 20 reputation" and thinks "I am well received in this site and I can make some reputation if I ask more questions". If the question has yet 2 or 3 upvotes while it is not a specially good question, then don't upvote more, but to leave many questions with 0 or 1 score is a way not to grow as community; we need more questions and we need to welcome users posting questions we need IMHO.

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I did a SEDE query using GPT-4 for monthly total reputation points earned on the site.

enter image description here

Then I did another for monthly active users.

enter image description here

The drop in votes is not related with a loose in active users in the site, it is a drop in active users voting.


Conclusion: users should vote more frequently.

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If people this a post is extremely good/bad they will vote. People voted to often. This is beginning to be corrected

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