I've started thinking that our site's users need to be a little bit more generous long before, but after this Question about the best loser from a new user gathered 5 answers and only 1 upvote (by the time of publishing) I got really upset.

This issue was already discussed in other communities and the general idea is that:

  • If you feel the question is worth answering, you should give it an upvote too.
  • Upvote good questions and answers, and consider downvoting bad questions and answers too (although maybe not for brand new users - we don't want to scare them off).
  • The number of up votes on a question should always be greater than or equal to the number of answers provided by the community.

The last one is called Gayot's Postulate (Gayot is the name of the user who proposed it). So, if you see a question where the Postulate has failed, please consider upvoting it to maintain balance in the force.

Again, I encourage everyone to read the original post on Travel SE.

  • 3
    Vote Early, Vote Often!!
    – fedorqui
    Commented Aug 30, 2017 at 14:28
  • 1
    We have the same problem everywhere around the network. too much low level user that don´t know how the site work.
    – gbianchi
    Commented Sep 8, 2017 at 18:59
  • 2
    @gbianchi, I wouldn't open this thread if it were only new users.
    – gdrt
    Commented Sep 10, 2017 at 11:20
  • 4
    Totally agree! My biggest pet peeve is when I see users (especially high rep users) answering a question and then the question sits there with no upvotes. If you are putting in the effort to answer a question, then you obviously thought that the question was interesting and worthy of your time. So upvote it! :) Commented Sep 17, 2017 at 21:08

1 Answer 1


If you put effort into answering a question, it's probably worth an upvote

I'm going to disagree.

If you put effort into answering a question, it's probably because you have an answer. Nothing more, nothing less.

I looked at the vote up privilege:

What is voting up?

Voting up is how the community indicates which questions and answers are most useful and appropriate.

When should I vote up?

Whenever you encounter a question, answer or comment that you feel is especially useful, vote it up!

Full disclosure: I haven't voted on any posts (yet). Not voting seems against the status quo, but I do understand why voting is essential (as indirectly addressed later in this post). I'll gladly accept being chewed out for my lack of participation.

For the questions I have answered, it is simply because I could provide an answer. I didn't consider voting up while providing answers because my ability to provide an answer doesn't correlate to thinking the question is useful. Voting a question up because an answer can be provided seems to circumvent the purpose of the voting system, which is:

Putting voting front and center is very much intentional; it is how …

  • good content is voted to the top

  • wrong or incorrect content is voted to the bottom

  • users who consistently provide useful content accrue reputation and are granted more privileges on the site

My answering a question shouldn't be a reflection on the question itself (whether the question is good, bad, easy, hard, inhumane, whatever). Multiple answers on a question that is considered off-topic doesn't necessarily mean the question is on-topic. The fact the question can have answers is essential on a Q&A-focused site, as highlighted in this comment:

The more objectively [a question] can be answered, the BETTER it fits the model.

Ultimately, I understand voting, being generous to new users and the ilk, but being upset and "maintaining balance in the force" are overreactions. If the question is "most useful and appropriate," it will earn the respect it deserves. This question with 5 answers and 1 point deserves this spotlight, but disagree with why this question got this spotlight (upvote the question because you have an answer).

My point: Questions and answers should be treated as standalone entities and voted upon individually toward its being "most useful and appropriate."

  • 3
    Well said. It doesn't feel right to upvote a bad question only because you answered it. And not answering a bad question is kinda bad too (if you know the answer and it's not just a LMGTFY question), only because you don't want to upvote it.
    – dly
    Commented Mar 5, 2018 at 11:12
  • @dly I feel the same way. However, I saw that answering bad questions is encouraging low quality. Would you say that is or should be the case? I don't see what's wrong with answering a "bad" question (if you have an answer for it) AND voting down on the question (if it is, in fact, that bad).
    – user14817
    Commented Mar 5, 2018 at 13:03
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    That's a difficult one and pretty much depends on each question itself. I'd always try to answer a "valid" question, if possible. However, I can understand the point in not answering too basic questions (which can as well be googled in 5 seconds). Depending on my mood and how stupid that question really is (like "why are there two goals on a football pitch") I'd just downvote or answer and downvote them.
    – dly
    Commented Mar 5, 2018 at 14:03
  • @dly just an FYI, your answer to a question further reinforces my point. Where (and how) to buy tickets appear to be off topic here, but since you provided an adequate answer, the question is being received well.
    – user14817
    Commented Mar 19, 2018 at 17:37
  • The older question seeks recommendation while the newer one explicitly asks about ticket availability at the stadium. I don't agree that this question meets the requirement to be off-topic for "shopping recommendation".
    – dly
    Commented Mar 19, 2018 at 17:43
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    @dly I see your point. The reason I note this because I recall seeing a close reason for a similar question along the lines of "we are not customer support" and I saw the question from a similar perspective.
    – user14817
    Commented Mar 19, 2018 at 17:47
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    Found the question with the "customer service" close reason: sports.stackexchange.com/questions/13885/…
    – user14817
    Commented Mar 20, 2018 at 17:11

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