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[meta] Karma/reputation calculation error on question downvotes

on 2/18/13, 9:37 AM 1,807 views

As usual, this is not a question, but a bug notification and/or recommendation for the correct functioning of the site.

I just downvoted the following question 500 internal error and (surprisingly as on SO it only happens on answers, not questions) got -2 karma points. No problems, I'm working for the community (and for my karma too).

Then I "unvoted" my downvote and got a +1...Hmmm, I thought I was going to get back my +2 karma points. So what occurs if I downvote again, does it will take away one or two karma points? Gotcha! It took away 2 karma points. Attached a screen capture of the process. I think if I downvote and undo it, it should at least add back the 2 karma points that where removed.

image description


More information on the reputation calculation process from SE sites. Extracted from the blog:

First, if you’ve contributed something worthwhile to the site, you should keep the reputation for that even if it eventually gets deleted. “Worthwhile” here is defined as,

  • A score of 3 or greater
  • Visible on the site for at least 60 days


Reported the bug as a question on the AskBot site.

AskBot is definitely undermined by bugs :( And lacks of features (compared to SE, at least)

Antonin Bourguignon (abo)
on 2/18/13, 9:42 AM

So you are able to commit a karma-suicide. ;-)

Camptocamp SA, Guewen Baconnier - Software Developer, Camptocamp
on 2/18/13, 9:43 AM

jajaja! yes indeed @Guewen Baconnier...so upvotes will be welcomed to regain the loosen points XD And @Anto, yes, seems that AskBot yet has many bugs to correct.

on 2/18/13, 9:45 AM

The problem is that there is only one guy who maintains and dev it... Plus the bug tracker is a pure mess: http://askbot.org/en/questions/

Antonin Bourguignon (abo)
on 2/18/13, 9:49 AM

@Anto, one guy? Didn't knew that, never visited AskBot page until now. So maybe many of these bugs can be reported there.

on 2/18/13, 9:53 AM

Gave you 10 karma point back by upvoting. So you can play with your karma. This should give you some more living-karma time. :)

Camptocamp SA
on 2/18/13, 9:53 AM

BTW, another existential question, what will happen if you downvote a question and the question is deleted? Do you get back your karma?

Camptocamp SA
on 2/18/13, 9:54 AM

Yep, I think it's the only "good" way to report that kind of issue ;) We've already reported some issues and the guy seems pretty reactive.

Antonin Bourguignon (abo)
on 2/18/13, 9:57 AM

Here in AskBot no idea. But at least on SE yes, you get back all your rep points. You also loose rep points if a question is closed and you had some upvotes on an answer to that question...happened to me already a couple of times.

on 2/18/13, 9:57 AM

@Anto, I see the developer asnwers the questions, is good. And that there is an user (I guess is you) reporting these kind of bugs then better to keep it that way. Take my question and post it there if you think is worth it.

on 2/18/13, 10:10 AM

Nop, it's not me, it's the employee who had to perform the Askbot installation and configuration. But now that it's "up and running", we've been told not to spend time anymore on Askbot.

Antonin Bourguignon (abo)
on 2/18/13, 10:13 AM

Antonin Bourguignon (abo)

--Antonin Bourguignon (abo)--

| 0 0 0
--Antonin Bourguignon (abo)--
Murder simulators enthusiast. http://gaming.stackexchange.com/users/15726/anto
Antonin Bourguignon (abo)
On 2/18/13, 10:29 AM

There are two parts to this question.

The fact that downvoting a question makes you losing karma (unlike SE networks) looks more like a (lack of) feature of Askbot than a real bug. I couldn't find any way to change this behavior in the config panel: there's only an option for "downvoting", not for "downvoting a question".

Loss for giving a downvote | Default value: -2

On the other hand, the regain of 1 point only doesn't seem logical at all and is more likely a bug. Askbot's bugs can be reported upstream: http://askbot.org/en/questions/ I'll add that any user who feels like can make a "report".

Update: There is a setting for the karma restore after canceling a downvote, but interestingly enough it's not the opposite of the karma loss by default:

Gain for voter on canceling downvote | Default value: 1

We've just changed the settings to mimic SE as much as possible, though there's no separate setting for downvoting an answer vs a question:

Loss for giving a downvote: -1
Gain for voter on canceling downvote: 1
Loss for owner of post that was downvoted: -2
Gain for post owner on canceled downvote: 2

I'm ok with loosing some rep points if it helps pointing out a bad or incorrect question. The regain of the rep points is what has the bug indeed as it should give back the 2 points and not just 1.

on 2/18/13, 10:35 AM

Good to see that questions are followed up...will test right away ;) Yes, worked like charm, perfect. Self answered on AskBot forum to reflect your findings.

on 2/19/13, 10:42 AM

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Asked: 2/18/13, 9:37 AM
Seen: 1807 times
Last updated: 3/16/15, 8:10 AM