I have been banned from the software engineering community for no real reason. My contributions were quite positive and in areas no one bothered to contribute.

And even if they were not so positive, which they were, since when the policy is to PUNISH MEDIOCRITY and junior engineers? ? Was not effort and positive attitude towards learning and supporting the community the whole point ?

The truth is "software engineering" in here is quite a hostile community. I constantly see downvotes to topics people cannot even understand. It is not uncommon to see 5 to 7 questions downvoted in a row. Maybe this does not fit obsolete perceptions of what engineering is ? This is definitely a matter some wise moderation should handle.


If anyone has little experience of this site, they know that questions get upvoted months or years later . This mean that this ban is actually forcing me out of this community .

  • 6
    Downvoting is not hostile. Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 15:48
  • No, it is not . I am afraid, that was not the point I tried to make . Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 15:56
  • Related: What goes on Software Engineering
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 19:44
  • Since I saw you already asked a new question on SE.SE, I actually wonder what about you were complaining here about.
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 23, 2020 at 21:04
  • You liked my new question ? Commented Jan 23, 2020 at 21:45
  • 1
    @CapBaracudas: honestly, I am not really a fan of theoreticians building huge castles in the air by inventing a lot of new terms and fizz-fuzz, which reduces itself to hot air when looking a bit more thoroughly at it. But I am always happy to debunk such things, that's why I answered your question.
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 24, 2020 at 13:07
  • Moreover, here on meta you were complaining loudly and harshly that you were "forced out of this community", and a day later it seems your block was lifted. You could have taken the time, edit this question and mention this.
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 24, 2020 at 13:12
  • 1
    It is easy to talk from a place of security (150K reputation) for problems people with 200 face. Thanks for your comment but I will not participate in this dialog. Commented Jan 24, 2020 at 14:01
  • Your answer was very good. Some can argue however that all engineering was hot air at its inception. An indicator remains an indicator and anyone can use it as they see fit. There is no forced method there might be cases where they add a lot of value or not. You can write a book about it maybe. Commented Jan 24, 2020 at 14:06

3 Answers 3


I am sorry to hear that you are upset about the way you are being received on the site. Just to clarify, you are not actually banned. What you are experiencing is that you are temporarily blocked from asking questions based on a number of downvoted questions that were asked over the last several months. I see that you have attempted to delete this questions however that will not change the question block outcome. It is an algorithm triggered question block that can only be reversed by editing your questions to improve quality and then receiving upvotes on those questions.

  • "It is not a ban, it is a block!"
    – user313675
    Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 14:18
  • 1
    so despite the fact that we have to face the bullying community, we also have to face the bully's friend(the algorithm), who rewards bullying not secure sensitive groups (newcomers) making it only about what it seems (votes) and not the circumstances of each case? So there is a judge who judges on a single axis .. hahahhahahahahahahahahhahahahahahahhahahahahahaha...I can make a more thorough review of why this algorithm is not fit for purpose. Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 15:22
  • do you even understand how easily this algorithm can be used by competitors ? Do you consider how bad is making the users experience and attacks sensitive groups ? Has this been a/b tested adequately? Is this algorithm about how things seem or how things are ? What happens with the false positives ? what about vulnerabilities to social engineering ? what about Goodhart's law ? This is low man . Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 15:29
  • what about of the proportionality of the block for a balance like mine (zero in average including the deleted post)? Why I had my reputation increased by 130 in 2 months and then I was blocked ? What about the confusion to the user ? Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 15:32
  • I wont go on.. You should pay me to give you advice.. not block me :D Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 15:33
  • 1
    but I should not be rude.. Thank you for your answer . It is definitely not insensitive. Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 16:03
  • 3
    I understand your frustration. It is best not to take it personally. There are a few different goals of the Stackexchange sites. One of which is to help people with their questions, the other is to create a useful repository of questions and answers that benefit the entire community when others are searching for similar questions. These two goals can sometimes be at odds if the community finds questions that are confusing or not helpful...
    – maple_shaft Mod
    Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 16:15
  • 2
    Please read through the following article on our Help Center. It will help you understand why you were question blocked and what you can do to reverse it. softwareengineering.stackexchange.com/help/question-bans
    – maple_shaft Mod
    Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 16:16
  • My contributions did not conflict with the aforementioned goals. It is rather sad to see a community powerless over bad leadership and no appeal process over robot judges. If this is not distopic, then what is it ? :/ Thanks anyway. Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 16:31

First of all, the people taking these actions don't perceive them as hostile, because they are not intended as hostile. I have no idea how to change that perception.

Second, the algorithm that blocked you was based on a time when downvotes were mostly reserved for serious issues, not the current environment where it's mostly a result of being unable to navigate this site's ever-narrowing scope. I have no idea why Stack Exchange hasn't made adjustments accordingly.

Third, people have unilaterally changed this site's de facto goals and scope, via voting patterns. 48.42% of people like you who ask questions disagree, but the site isn't structured in a way that your votes matter. I have no idea why Stack Exchange doesn't try to address that.

Finally, this site is also increasingly unwelcoming to people like me who try to be helpful and who view people like you not as spoiling the pristine quality of our curated repository of programming wisdom, but as honest seekers of help who are the site's most important visitors. My answers get deleted along with your questions. My votes are easily overruled. My posts are also often construed in the worst possible light. When people like me don't want to engage as often, that further imbalances the site's community moderation. I have no idea why Stack Exchange seems to be okay with that.

There have been efforts to try to address this problem, like this blog post and the subsequent cosmetic changes like the "Cap Baracudas is a new contributor. Be nice" notice at the top of this text box, but it has been mostly unsuccessful. Part of the problem is people feel demonized for using the tools provided as asked to improve the site's quality. I'll probably get a few defensive responses to this post because people tend to take my criticisms personally.

What concrete action would I propose? The moderation tools are imbalanced in favor of the downvoters, and there is not even a mild consequence for being unwelcoming. There should be more ways to trigger a temporary block on downvoting and closing, perhaps by enforcing a minimum ratio of positive moderation actions to negative ones. Maybe closing should get more difficult when the closed percentage surpasses a threshold. Maybe people should be able to get notifications when questions they've engaged positively with end up closed. Cosmetic changes won't change the perception of this site as hostile and unwelcoming.

  • I guess the blocking algorithm still works better on high volume sites like SO, but for this site I agree, it is probably way too sensitive. However, I don't think SE (inc) will be willing to adjust the algorithm's parameters individually.
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 24, 2020 at 15:40
  • ... there is already a temporary block for downvoting - the limit for the number of of downvotes per day. I can remember someone here on this site (you know who) once was talking what he was doing whenever he runs out of votes. I found this really strange, since over the years, I have never even come close to this limit.
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 24, 2020 at 15:44
  • We get 24 close votes and 40 downvotes per day. The site averaged 24 questions per day last year. That is effectively no limit. Commented Jan 24, 2020 at 19:27
  • Of course not. But thats my point: some people here seem to be proud of running out of votes either. I think part of the problem is, we have not enough people here counterbalancing the downvoters - heck, if I think a question is worth an answer, I almost always upvote it, but see how many questions get less upvotes than answers. That could be a start to change the rules: for each answer a question gets, an upvote should be applied automatically.
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 25, 2020 at 8:37
  • ... and of course, I know all the counter-arguments against such an automatism. But I think the very least thing could be to make each answer automatically apply an upvote to the answered question, and let answerers decide afterwards if they want to retract the upvote (and not the other way round).
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 25, 2020 at 8:48
  • ... another idea would be to limit the number of available downvote flags for a specific site per day/per person to a number calculated by incorparating the average number of daily questions & answers posted on that site.
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 25, 2020 at 9:48
  • ... it seems the idea of auto-upvoting answered questions was already suggested 10 years ago, and the majority of the community did not like it.
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 25, 2020 at 18:09

I am not sure about the specifics of your ban but I also do believe the community here has at least some issues. Just a cursory glance at the meta posts shows trigger happy moderators and a downvote happy user base I can at least anecdotally confirm.

I also believe the aggressive moderation is the bigger issue here - just look at the garbage fire at

Moderators: stop deleting benign comments!

  • 2
    I have no idea which "garbage fire" you are talking of, this question got 56 upvotes and an excellent and very constructive top answer. Note also up- and downvotes on Meta work differently than on the main site, here they are explicitly used for expressing agreement or non-agreement.
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 19:49
  • I was talking about the last answer on that question, not the question itself. Regardless I have seen enough on this SE
    – user313675
    Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 19:53
  • 1
    Well, where I agree is we have too many downvote-trigger happy community members, and too few members balancing this by upvotes. But feel free to participate in upvoting more questions you want to keep here.
    – Doc Brown
    Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 19:56
  • I don't believe I will. I keep seeing some questions and answers mass upvoted or downvoted with very odd patterns. This site does not deliver anything much different than SO to justify sacrificing my sanity 'balancing' against that
    – user313675
    Commented Jan 22, 2020 at 20:12

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