I gave an answer to a python question and got a downvote pretty quickly. No comment, so I asked (somewhat humorously) what caused the downvote. Then I got another downvote, and my comment was deleted.

What's wrong with you folks?

Is it bad manners to ask for an explanation? The question was arguably a bit weak, but is that a reason to downvote a to-the-point and tested answer?

  • 2
    TYVM, found that meta discussion just now, helps to understand but I (like everyone who asks this) still feel a little more informational feedback might help. We all know that QA feedback of the form "it doesn't work" is not helpful when software is being tested, and it doesn't feel helpful when questions and answers are judged that way. Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 12:25
  • 1
    well I saw your answer voted down and considered commenting it with the reference to this guidance but decided that it would look better if I do this after the question is closed. In the hindsight, it probably would be better to post it immediately, sorry
    – gnat
    Commented Aug 20, 2019 at 13:14
  • @Hans-MartinMosner thank you for this discussion. I have also made several disappointing experiences on Software Engineering and Stackoverflow on this issue. Sometimes, because several users use "on-topic" rules of Stackoverflow on Software Engeering, which is dealing about "how-to" implement something, rather than "fixing issues". I hope, that the community itself regulates those "downsters" with uping questions, that belong to this site. E.g. softwareengineering.stackexchange.com/questions/401202/…
    – Erdinc Ay
    Commented Nov 17, 2019 at 13:03

2 Answers 2


You likely picked up downvotes because you were providing coding assistance to an off-topic "gimme teh codez" question. The other answer to that question had 3 downvotes as well.

Answering questions here that would get blocked on SO merely encourages more of them, so community members will downvote the answers to discourage the answers. 9 times out of 10, those askers have already been blocked on SO. Answering their low quality questions doesn't help them understand how to use the StackExchange environment properly. There is a reason why they were blocked, and there are site mechanics in place to help them learn how to ask higher quality questions.

I have closed and deleted the question as it's off-topic for Software Engineering.


Please keep answering questions.

Down and Up votes are pretty random and you shouldn't take them personally. Its just the system rolling on.

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