Is revenge voting against the rules or just unhelpful? I suspect I am e.g. here.

It's fine, I'm not pushing for a ban, at all. It's just that I've put a lot of time into the site, and have put up with IMVHO a lot of erratic voting patterns. But nothing this overtly against the site remit.

I apologize in advance: for I did revenge vote someone a few weeks ago. That is only because they seemed to be oft down-voting my questions without, I think, good reason. I was -- briefly -- angry. I have never down-voted without good reason, even if my reasons are, unfortunately, wrong on occasion.

I would never want to damage this site etc. due to my use or overuse of it. So, apologies if anyone takes offense.

EDITED forget it it's just yet another website; act however you like.

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    Is this really so different from your last two questions? We all get down votes that seem completely unwarranted to us. Unfortunate perhaps, but that's how the Stack Exchange system is designed. Sep 9, 2019 at 8:07
  • yes it is different, isn't it @curiousdannii
    – user38026
    Sep 9, 2019 at 9:11
  • You annoy me with this question philosophy.stackexchange.com/q/65990/37256 . I've not downvoted because I dislike downvoting, especially without explanation. And the best explanation I could give is this: "This q annoys!" This q OTOH I find interesting philosophy.stackexchange.com/q/65984/37256 so not personal
    – Rushi
    Sep 9, 2019 at 13:57
  • maybe take a step back from your less prosocial emotions @Rusi
    – user38026
    Sep 9, 2019 at 17:07
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    I doubt that individual revenge-votes are against StackExchange's rules. I mean, serial-voting is against the rules, but the rules about individual votes are notoriously lax. That said.. against the rules or not, it seems like reasonably mature adults should have some sense of self-respect such that they'd feel offended by their own behavior if they were to engage in such practice. And when it does happen, meh.. I'd shrug it off. I mean, if someone's so childish as to do something like that, what does their vote matter?
    – Nat
    Sep 10, 2019 at 6:35
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    You would think that posters to philosophy would generally be a bit more... philosophical... about things like downvotes. Maybe we just need more stoicism :) Sep 10, 2019 at 16:51
  • I remember some months ago that a very opinionated newer member (not the OP) listed what questions he thought were proper to this forum. From what I can tell, this newer person knows almost nothing about philosophy.
    – Gordon
    Sep 19, 2019 at 17:24

2 Answers 2


Yes "revenge" voting is against the rules. Each vote should be made on the merits of the individual post in question. Unfortunately isolated cases cannot be distinguished from more legitimate voting. So action will generally only be taken when more than one post from a user is voted on at the one time. Stack exchange staff don't want to explain the exact heuristics used (because that would make it easier to serial vote unnoticed) but if you get four or five votes from one person in one day they'll usually be reversed.

But adjacent to the idea of revenge voting is that of a person's community reputation (not just their reputation points). As much as we might try to treat each post independently, reality is that most of us will ignore some of the weaknesses of people who we respect and have tougher standards on people we've seen make lots of poor questions in the past. Again nothing can be done to detect or prevent this. It reflects the fact that users with a history of many off-topic or too broad or opinionated questions might be seen as wasting the community's time, so some from the community may in turn spend less time evaluating the merits of their future posts and vote more from first impressions.

Finally, you cannot know how people vote, and it is better for everyone, including yourself, to not try to guess. Even if you're right it will only make you bitter, and accusing someone who you're wrong about will unnecessarily antagonise them. Focus on the comments you do receive.

  • questions and answers, maybe? not sure what you mean about "tougher standards" given that each question should really be assessed on merit alone
    – user38026
    Sep 10, 2019 at 1:47
  • i'll be sure to remember that it's permissible to have "tougher standards" due to previous reputation etc.. good luck!
    – user38026
    Sep 10, 2019 at 1:50
  • For example, on the Linguistics site most etymology questions are not well received. Most end up closed. Some users post a lot of etymology questions. If they post a borderline acceptable question it's more likely to be closed than if someone more respected posted it. Perhaps this is nonideal. But it also reflects the fact that when you waste the community's time by asking questions that are clearly off-topic/too broad/too opinion based they'll spend less time considering the merits of your future questions. Sep 10, 2019 at 1:53
  • there's a huge difference between willfully doing so and the sorts of questions i'm asking
    – user38026
    Sep 10, 2019 at 1:54
  • I was just writing generally, not about your questions. Sep 10, 2019 at 1:56
  • ok, fair enough.
    – user38026
    Sep 10, 2019 at 1:57
  • In order to make a judgment on a question it helps to have some knowledge of philosophy. I’m writing just generally, not about your answer curiousdannii.
    – Gordon
    Sep 19, 2019 at 19:38
  • " unnecessary antagonise them" should be " unnecessarily antagonise them". Tried to edit the post myself was not allowed to. Aug 1 at 23:35
  • @MatthewChristopherBartsh Thanks! Aug 1 at 23:57

Some reasons why I do not down-vote is to avoid being tempted to vote against someone out of revenge or to down-vote something merely because I do not agree with it. This should also make it clear to others that if they were down-voted I was not the one doing it.

However, that practice doesn't extend to flagging or voting to close or delete posts. I flag a lot and I recommend it to others for posts that one thinks should be removed.

If one suspects someone of down-voting one's post, check that user's profile to see if they were active during the time of the down-vote. if they were active, then check the bottom-right of the activity tab under "Votes cast" to see if they voted recently or if they tend to down vote. It is sometimes good to know that the person whom one suspected of down-voting could not have done so.

  • yeah, this place is going rapidly downhill imvho. why was this downvoted? too many philosophy cadets
    – user38026
    Sep 9, 2019 at 17:05
  • i think that whoever is casting these votes is just engaged in divide and conquer bullying tactics tbh. is revenge voting against the rules, or not? simple question
    – user38026
    Sep 9, 2019 at 17:11
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    I must agree @another_name. Downvoting meta q/a-s is ludicrous.
    – Rushi
    Sep 9, 2019 at 17:23
  • I agree with Frank’s take. Philosophy is a broad subject matter and it takes something pretty bad to get a downvote out of me.
    – Gordon
    Sep 19, 2019 at 17:26

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