I love answering questions on here, but I'm tired of not being able to do anything because of my stinking reputation! It's outrageous. A highly experienced grammarian could answer questions on here but could easily be criticized by high-reputation people who don't know what they are talking about. One of my answers to be removed because "it didn't answer the question." If it were still up, you'd see how good it was.

We're supposed to be providing research, but sometimes the points within a post are so obvious that research is unnecessary. I hate seeing extremely long posts done by people who are afraid of being criticized for lack of research when the question is so simple! We should be encouraging to-the-point answers with some optional research while being able to upvote other answers in the forum even if one has low reputation.

Just because one has low reputation does not mean that one's answers will instantly be crappy!

  • We all started from a low reputation here, but good answers are generally appreciated and upvoted. Research is always helpful to the wide variety of users that have access to this site.
    – user66974
    May 31, 2017 at 21:12
  • 3
    I can't see that any of your answers has been removed (and moderators can see a lot).
    – Andrew Leach Mod
    May 31, 2017 at 21:13
  • I had to make a new account.
    – user231780
    Jun 1, 2017 at 0:25
  • Wow! I just gained 40 rep from doing... nothing?
    – user231780
    Jun 1, 2017 at 0:27
  • 2
    How can you believe any of this reputation nonsense means anything at all?
    – Robusto
    Jun 1, 2017 at 18:50
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    RE: If it were still up, you'd see how good it was. If you hadn't deleted your account and created a new one, we'd also be able to see how good it was. You really didn't help your cause by posting this rant under a new name. Moreover, you should give your answers more time before deciding how "outrageous" this system is. Not everyone logs on every day and reviews every answer.
    – J.R.
    Jun 1, 2017 at 21:31
  • 1
    @J.R. HAHAHA. Some moderator changed the text so that it said, "You'd see how good it was." That's not was I was trying to say. At all.
    – user231780
    Jun 1, 2017 at 22:59
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    @J.R. "Not everyone logs on every day and reviews every answer." Do not be rude. You seem rather mad after I complained about an answering system on an English support website. I don't see how that makes sense.
    – user231780
    Jun 1, 2017 at 23:10
  • 7
    @SebastianP - I don’t see what’s rude about my comment. I was answering your point in bold: Just because one has low reputation does not mean that one's answers will instantly be crappy! All I meant to say was, give the community time to see your answers. By the way, I’ve been a regular on this site for four years, and I’ve never sensed that the community thought an answer would be crappy just because the person who left it was new.
    – J.R.
    Jun 2, 2017 at 2:09
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    It would be interesting if one could start with a high reputation and Benjamin Button their way down. I doubt they would have an easier time. As someone who's been pretty active in a short span of time, my impression has been that the more reputation I get, the tougher people are on me. Jun 2, 2017 at 2:30
  • @RaceYouAnytime True, that. The more reputation you have, the more quality content people expect from you, which could also be part of the reason one of our senior members felt the pressure too much to bear and decided to leave the site (hopefully temporarily). But that's just my theory.
    – NVZ Mod
    Jun 2, 2017 at 5:22
  • "Not everyone logs on every day and reviews every answer." What is disrespectful about the comment is extremely clear, yet you pretend as though it were totally all right to say that. @J.R.
    – user231780
    Jun 28, 2017 at 20:23
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    Also, I don't think -8 votes is very fair toward this complaint. I still get unreasonable downvotes from people for no reason.
    – user231780
    Jun 28, 2017 at 20:26
  • 2
    @SebastianPojman - There must be some kind of cultural disconnect going on here. I was stating a simple fact and nothing more. The bolded part of your question seems to assume that a number of users will treat an answer as inferior if it's written by a new user. I was trying to point out that a good answer may not attract the upvotes if deserves for days after it gets posted, because some users might not see it until then. By the way, if you think my comment is rude, flag it. If the moderation team agrees, it will be deleted.
    – J.R.
    Jun 28, 2017 at 20:51
  • You're so right. At this point, I've embarrassed myself too much at this point. Can some moderator just close my accounts? They're under the same name: Sebastian Pojman.
    – user231780
    Jun 29, 2017 at 16:59

2 Answers 2


I understand your frustration with the low reputation, and I hope you understand that all of us here started from the bottom.

And now we're here, with thousands of reputation and hundreds of badges earned, not because we're all experts in the language, but because we welcome feedback from the community, in the form of votes, comments and reviews, and make the necessary improvements to our posts, and always strive towards doing our best.

There is no such thing as a perfectly obvious answer on a site where a majority of the page views are from people googling for help. What may be obvious to some, may not be for others, and those that don't find things to be obvious, will be unable to understand an answer if there is not enough explanation given.

We have no way to verify a user's claim that they are an expert, but we can vote up or accept their answers, when we see them post detailed and well-written ones, or with external references to support their assertions.

If you are a highly experienced grammarian, as I think is what you are implying, do check out the top ranked users on our site, and see how they answer questions, and what kind of questions they find worthy of their time, and see how some of their answers may not even need an external reference, if that is what you want to achieve, that is to be able to write answers without references.

Reputation in real life is not handed to you on a silver platter, and that expression is applicable to the online life as well. So, ignore the comments that target you personally, but welcome and adapt to the constructive criticism about your posts, and in time, your knowledge of various subjects will earn you a reputation as an (online) expert.

See also: What is reputation? How do I earn (and lose) it?

  • 1
    I'd love to be a highly experienced grammarian, but eh, I'm not (not at all). I like your point of view on this rather rude question of mine. -5 is what this question deserves. Maybe ELU and I didn't get off to a great start. Big whoop. Let's see if I can reach this site's standards in the future with some work. Happy "grammaring"!
    – user231780
    Jun 1, 2017 at 20:29
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    @SebastianPojman I'm impressed with that attitude and sincerely look forward to seeing your future contributions to the site. Jun 3, 2017 at 2:06
  • Yay! ...Althogh, to be honest, some people and I are already not getting along. It's crazy!
    – user231780
    Jun 3, 2017 at 2:50
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    @SebastianPojman Give it time. Some people are routine critics, there's no question about it. But speaking as a relatively new user, I've found that the best approach is to try to learn a little from even the people I disagree with. NVZ put it all better than I could. Jun 3, 2017 at 2:59

Perhaps a different perspective might help here.

Stack Exchange aims to be a curated library of questions and authoritative answers within well-defined areas of interest. More to the point, the intention is that the community itself does the curating.

Many of the tools and privileges gained by rep relate to moderator tools. Asking and answering questions is open to just about everyone, but closing and deleting questions requires more rep and a voting process. I suppose they had to strike some kind of balance between community involvement and the cultivation and propagation of group norms. It doesn't take much to get involved, but if one is to be entrusted with moderation tools, it makes sense for one to first understand and be accepted by the community. Rep might make a poor proxy for an interview process, but it's reasonable as a first approximation.

On research, I see this as primarily giving visitors some objective basis for accepting or rejecting answers. When someone doesn't know enough to evaluate (multiple, conflicting) answers to their question, an "I believe so" answer isn't as helpful as an "and here's why" answer.

Regarding dissatisfaction with up/down/close/delete votes, Meta (here) is a good place to seek clarification or support. Looking through the various Meta posts should reveal that rep doesn't really count for much in this process; it's the rationale for or against a post being on-topic (for EL&U) that tends to be more persuasive, not the rep of the person making the case.

I think the more established users here tend to be more lenient on newcomers, especially those who take the effort to try to understand the process. Admittedly, the site isn't particularly well documented - or rather, there's plenty of documentation, but finding the relevant piece tends to be tricky! Feel free to jump onto the chat site if you find it hard to find what you're looking for. The formal moderators (and a number of established users) are often around and are usually happy to help.

Welcome to English Language & Usage! :)

  • Very sorry!! My brother thought it would be funny to comment random things while I was away.
    – user231780
    Aug 13, 2017 at 20:39
  • @BlackandWhite Glad that was all. :)
    – Lawrence
    Aug 13, 2017 at 23:13

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