Normally, reputation increases by 10 if an answer gets 1 upvote, 15 if an answer is accepted, and 5 if a question gets 1 upvote.

But on this website, reputation increases by 1 for some of my questions. I'd like to know how reputation increases by 1. Thanks.

  • 6
    You should ask questions about the mechanics of the site on [meta]. This site, “Main”, is exclusively for questions about English. For a question, you can +1 net point if you get 1 upvote and 2 downvotes (1x5 - 2x2). For answers, can earn +1 pts if an answer you’ve downvoted later gets deleted. You can also earn it in some edge cases with respect to the daily reputation cap.
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 1:38
  • 3
    One other possible scenario: when a downvoter reverses their downvote.
    – J.R.
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 20:51

3 Answers 3


Although it's not particularly clear when looking at this page (because the events didn't happen in this order), the complete summary of your reputation on this site can be summarized as follows:

More specifically, I think you're getting confused seeing the net +21 from upvotes and downvotes on the one question. Under normal circumstances it's unusual to see a post with such a large yet equal number of upvotes and downvotes, but I believe it's due to the fact the question was mentioned on meta elsewhere.

As others have pointed out, you need to have 1000 reputation on this site to see the vote breakdown directly, although there are some other solutions, such as a SEDE query or a userscript (see here for more info). However, unless you reach the daily 200 rep cap (or it's a meta question) it is usually easiest to calculate it via equations, where u is # of upvotes, d is number of downvotes, t is total net rep gain from votes (in this case +21), and s is net score (in this case 0):

  • If question: 5u - 2d = t
  • If answer: 10u - 2d = t
  • u + d = s

(You have to make sure that you account for reputation from accepted answers, which is +2 if you're doing the accept or +15 if you get the accept. This isn't too hard of a calculation IMHO, since I do it all the time in my head for users who have only one post.)

Note: the question and this answer were written before the November 2019 retroactive change to make question upvotes worth +10.

  • Also currently on English language and usage (not meta) where this question is migrated, it is still displayed with -2 reputations. How to remove it on original English site?
    – E Zhang
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 15:58
  • @MathWizard It will be automatically removed (and the downvotes nullified) on its own. It may take a day or two, but it'll happen. Don't worry about it.
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 16:17
  • @ Dan Bron, thanks. Is there a way to see number of upvotes and downvotes on English site?
    – E Zhang
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 16:24
  • @ Laurel, it is not due to the fact that question was in another question, which was posted later than one of mine. Normally on other sites like mathematics, I can see number of upvotes/downvotes by simply clicking on the number between up and down arrows. But I can not see that on English site. It is weird since all sites should be same I think
    – E Zhang
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 16:33
  • 2
    All sites in SE are the same (modulo beta sites which have different rep thresholds for certain things). On Mathematics.se, you have >13K rep. On English.se, you have ~100 rep. On either site, you need 1,000 rep to be able to click to see voting breakdowns.
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 16:50
  • It is really nonsense to require 1000 in order to click to see voting detail. The information should be available to anyone. I forgot what happened in Mathematics when it was below 1000.
    – E Zhang
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 21:19
  • 1
    @MathWizard It's been requested before, but declined. It's apparently an expensive operation to perform, which is why it's a privilege in the first place. (BTW, you also need 1000 rep on Mathematics for this privilege, but you may have been too new in the beginning to realize you were missing something.)
    – Laurel Mod
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 21:44
  • Yeah I heard it is for speed reason, in other words, if anyone can see it, database would become very slow. However, we can add JavaScript to the browser to see it
    – E Zhang
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 23:02
  • @ Dan Bron, "It will be automatically removed (and the downvotes nullified) on its own. It may take a day or two, but it'll happen". It is already 5 days, but downvote is still there.
    – E Zhang
    Commented Oct 15, 2018 at 15:33
  • @MathWizard Actually, the question needs to be 30 days old before it is deleted as a migration stub automatically (see edit). You can tell that the question hasn't been deleted by looking at it here. It's only 2 rep points, so it's hardly worth taking any action, but you could flag it and ask for a moderator to delete it (which is the only way to get it deleted early. Because it is locked, regular high rep users can't even vote to delete it).
    – Laurel Mod
    Commented Oct 15, 2018 at 18:47

Your reputation may increase by 1 if an answer you downvoted is deleted.

You can see all the individual events that affected your reputation by going to your Profile->Activity->Reputation.


It's also possible that you've reached the reputation maximum for the day.

In general you can only gain 200 reputation per day (although some things bypass this: bounty awards, accepted answers, and association bonuses). For instance, if you were already at 199 (somehow), then getting an upvote would only give you one more point (+1), not ten (+10), even though it would have given you the additional nine points if you hadn't reached the daily maximum.

  • This is very easy to verify by viewing the OP's activity/reputation statistics, so there's nothing to speculate here i.e. It's also possible that you've reached….
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 7:00
  • 2
    "I would like to know how reputation increases by 1" (and "Why does reputation increase by 1") is a general question. (Unlike "Tell me why my reputation only increased by 1 in this particular case.") There are many possible reasons for it to occur. We may not need to speculate on existing increases, but the reputation maximum is a valid reason for a single-digit increase. Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 7:04
  • And before that the OP says … “But on this website, reputation increases by 1 for some of my questions”… So, is it possible that the OP reached the max reputation on any one day? This answer is fine if you remove the speculation.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 7:08
  • @Mari-LouA My answer is a true statement for any of the SE sites, as they all behave the same way. But they may not have realized that and thought that this website behaved differently than the others—maybe because this was the first site on which they encountered it. The question, as it stands, is unclear, so any answer will be speculative. The comment under the question itself is spot on, and the individual answers here expand on it. Commented Oct 10, 2018 at 13:51

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