I've recently noticed a question came into the featured section with -8 votes (or around here) now with the bounty with absolutely nothing changed from the original question except some grammar here and there it has gone up to +8 votes.

The question hasn't changed but it received such a negative response first time around then with a bounty is has received a rather positive response.

Is this due to everyone else voting what the majority is voting to up their counts or is the bounty influencing peoples votes?

  • 6
    "Bounty effect" maybe? Aug 18, 2018 at 1:59
  • 4
    @JoeStrazzere in this case, a few of us who down-voted were involved in the edit, after the edit we reversed our down-votes. That would account for at least half the points in the reversal. Aug 20, 2018 at 16:28
  • 1
    @RichardU - yup, that might account for a few. Aug 20, 2018 at 17:00
  • 1
    One useful piece of intel for future reference: anyone above 1000 rep can click the votes to see the breakdown of upvotes and downvotes. In a case like this you'd see that a lot of the original downvotes were reversed, which would cause a big swing in the net score.
    – Lilienthal Mod
    Aug 21, 2018 at 19:46
  • I've just learned something new - had no idea that feature existed, thanks!
    – dvniel
    Aug 22, 2018 at 12:33

3 Answers 3


If it's the one I'm thinking about, the question hasn't changed, but the tone of it has, in order to make it more constructive in nature.

Previously, it was

"How do I punish people for not doing what I tell them?"

And now it's more about

"How do I help people transition to this new way of working?"

Most of the question is the same, but the tone is different.

The downvotes weren't about it being a bad question, it was more about the bad premise (people downvoted because they didn't want to reward a punishment-oriented question).

The question was identified as being potentially a good question, was discussed in the main chatroom here and subsequently edited in a way that made it positive sounding without trashing the existing answers.

Although the questioner isn't likely to return (he/she dropped the question and didn't respond or return from that day to this, probably due to backlash about the "punishment" angle of the original edit).

The bounty has made it attractive to people now, who will hopefully provide answers that are helpful to people searching for the same issue.

The upvotes are as a result of the change of tone.

It's great that older questions are being revived like this, and the editing of them to make them more answerable (without changing the original premise) is also great.

  • Ah okay, this makes sense thanks
    – Twyxz
    Aug 17, 2018 at 7:19

To expound a bit on what Snow said...

We try to save questions if we can.

This particular question came up in the watercooler, and was discussed. Several users (myself included) made edits to make the question presentable. A number of us (myself included) then reversed our down-votes.

Remember, reversing a down-vote has a net +2 effect, so if just 8 people reversed their vote, that would account for the jump from -8 to +8.

I decided to add a bounty because I felt that the edited question deserved a second look after that.

We try to avoid bandwagoning of any kind. We don't encourage up, or down voting, only voting your conscience.


This may be due to the HNQ effect. Once the question makes it to the Hot Network Questions list, it instantly becomes visible to a much broader audience, of which the majority is only able to vote up. So no matter how bad the question is, once it's in the HNQ it just keeps getting upvoted until it ages away or is taken down by close votes.

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