I recently down-voted an answer to this question that has abusive and inappropriate content and I got -1 reputation point for that.

I don't care that much for the reputation points but I feel it is strange to get negative reputation for down-voting something that deserves downvoting.

  • Note that flagging is more appropriate than down voting in this case, and there is no rep cost for flagging. (Maybe you also flagged - but just flagging would have been enough).
    – Tony Meyer
    Nov 8, 2013 at 18:49
  • @TonyMeyer If the downvotes are significant enough, the Community bot can delete questions without the need for a mod/high-rep user. I don't know about answers, though.
    – Izkata
    Nov 9, 2013 at 2:15
  • @Izkata I'd be surprised if the bot would be able to get to it faster than the mods here. They move pretty quickly. Flagging is still 'free' for those worried about rep, anyway.
    – Tony Meyer
    Nov 9, 2013 at 6:37
  • @TonyMeyer True, though I saw it happen once, less than 12 minutes after the question was posted ('tis the only reason I know it can do that)
    – Izkata
    Nov 9, 2013 at 6:53

1 Answer 1


StackOverflow Meta - Why do you lose reputation for down-voting?

Main points of top answer copied here:

The motivation behind it is to put emphasis on up-voting or not voting at all. This way, down votes will carry more weight and it will also prevent users from abusing the system by down-voting excessively.

According to what Jeff/Joel discussed on the SO podcast, they wanted to find a way to discourage users from down-voting for less legitimate reasons (say a pro-Java developer down-voting everything remotely related to .NET or the like).

Additionally, if the post is deleted, you should get that rep back.

  • 3
    FYI: It's deleted now, so you should have the rep back. Nov 8, 2013 at 17:53

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