We've had the argument whereby comments on down votes are not such a good idea, but how about making the DV'er's user name publicly available. anonymous down voting belongs to the dark ages.

  • 6
    That is not going to happen. Mar 28, 2015 at 8:34
  • 7
    Also, anonymous voting belongs to the dark ages? Where do you live where you don't have secret elections?!? Mar 28, 2015 at 8:37
  • 2
    mount olympus..
    – JMP
    Mar 28, 2015 at 8:38

2 Answers 2


I can't disagree with this more strongly.

I have never seen anyone complain about anonymous up votes. That is most likely because the user feels validated/rewarded/(insert positive here.) However, there are very many complaints about anonymous down votes.

Users often state that explanations of down votes will help them learn to post better questions/answers, and this may very well be true. However, much more often the user feels unjustly attacked. After a few down votes, some believe they are being serially down voted. Few people honestly want to hear that their post is simply not helpful, useful, poorly researched, incorrect, or any other legitimate reason for a down vote. They want to argue with the down voter. This results in tedious comment wars.

A better way to deal with unwanted down votes is to improve the content of your posts. You will contribute more to the site, and the up votes will be a pleasant side-effect of posting instead of a bummer.

Finally, your answer to @curiousdannii's question (that you live on Mount Olympus), while amusing, indicates that you might enjoy hurling your thunderbolts at the down voter more than doing anything useful about the content they are down voting.

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    Since @Jon Mark Perry is a new/recent user, I would add that at times down-votes, as well as up-votes , have actually no real/apparent relation to the content of the answers or of the questions involved and anonymity probably favours this behaviour. I'd call it just background noise of a system that actually works. Your reputation is not really be affected by 'irrational' voting!! – Josh61 24 mins ago add a comment
    – user66974
    Mar 30, 2015 at 10:40
  • 1
    @Josh61 - an excellent observation, but that might give the OP more reason to want to do away with anonymity . Mar 30, 2015 at 20:36
  • Voting in a democracy is anonymous, while "down-voting" happens either in a government (motion of no confidence, e.g.), or in the form of public protests. Neither of these are anonymous unless there is fear of reprisal. Personally, I'm not bothered by the anonymous down-voting here. I'd gladly go along with the requirement to explain a down-vote, though. I downvoted medica's reply above because [redacted by mod following flag].
    – bobro
    Apr 4, 2015 at 14:40
  • @bobro - not pop psychology. This has been discussed here before, many times. Please don't make things personal. If you want to downvote, fine. It's a reasonable thing to do, particularly in meta, where it means you disagree. But to downvote someone because you... well, you get the rest. Apr 4, 2015 at 18:13
  • @medica There is nothing personal- I downvoted your poor answer, not you. I have also upvoted at least one (excellent) answer of yours.
    – bobro
    Apr 11, 2015 at 8:04
  • @bobro - I don't mind, and never take it personally, when someone downvotes my answers. I do tale it personally when you state you downvoted mine because (then go on to call me names,) Can't have it both ways; Why are we still discussing this? It's over, AFAICT. Apr 11, 2015 at 14:11

Answer, because I cannot yet comment. I'll work on that.

Why not limit down votes to -10 or so, and any beyond that don't affect the total. The OP gets the point that their post has been negatively received, but does not feel overwhelmed by "serial downvoting."

I agree with @medica in her second paragraph. Removing anonymity more often than not leads to arguments, not resolutions.

  • There have been more than 60,000 questions asked on ELU. As of this writing, only 4 have received a net total of 10 or more downvotes.
    – J.R.
    Nov 3, 2015 at 22:02

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