Perhaps this is a meta meta question, but I wonder whether experience and reputation on other SE sites should not be taken into consideration when granting certain privileges, such as those to review close votes, for example.

Consider, for the sake of argument, a relatively new member of Academia SE who is a long serving academic and also a high-rep member of another SE site, where they possess, say, review privileges and know the general gist of SE very well.

One way to implement this would be to use a formula based on a combination of SE sites, say Academia SE rep + 10% of rep elsewhere on SE.

  • Could the downvoter please suggest how the question could be improved?
    – Walter
    Jun 23, 2017 at 9:44
  • 3
    Voting on meta is different with down votes often meaning No and up votes meaning Yes. This of course makes things confusing when someone asks a good question for which the answer is no.
    – StrongBad
    Jun 23, 2017 at 11:56
  • @StrongBad Then why does the meta upvote icon say "This question shows research effort; it is useful and clear" and the meta downvote icon "This question does not show any research effort; it is unclear or not useful"?
    – DavePhD
    Jun 23, 2017 at 18:48
  • 2
    @DavePhDd must likely poor design. See academia.stackexchange.com/help/whats-meta
    – StrongBad
    Jun 23, 2017 at 19:06

2 Answers 2


I like to think of the privileges granted by reputation falling into two categories: participation and moderation. The system provides a 100 rep association bonus to users of other sites. This seems to allow existing SE users to fully participate in a new site immediately, but only provides limited moderation privileges (a new user can flag things). As sites should ideally be able to handle the moderation load with existing high rep users, it doesn't seem like there is a need to provide other privileges. Is there one that is obviously missing?

  • Hmm. Perhaps I got used to participate in moderation that I find this distinction somewhat artificial.
    – Walter
    Jun 22, 2017 at 17:23
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    @Walter There are moderation privileges because SE sites need them, not because it's fun for the users to have them. So there is no problem for SE sites if you can't have fun with modding privileges, as long as enough people have them. It would only be a problem if that made using the sites unfun for enough people to result in a dearth of moderating users.
    – sgf
    Jun 23, 2017 at 12:17

There's already a mechanism that gives privileges to "high" rep users of other sites. It's called the association bonus:

If you are an experienced Stack Exchange network user with 200 or more reputation on at least one site, you will receive a starting +100 reputation bonus to get you past basic new user restrictions. This will happen automatically on all current Stack Exchange sites where you have an account, and on any other Stack Exchange sites at the time you log in.

This bonus unlocks nearly half of all the privileges (notably upvoting, commenting, and flagging).

I think it unlocks only so much for a reason. Close voting in particular makes sense as a privilege. If a question needs closure, a user with 101 reputation can flag it, pushing the question into the queue where other users can decide if it should be closed. If the question shouldn't be closed, the flag gets declined, and enough of that gets you flag banned.

Consider this: I got the ability to close vote on one site through nothing but a single answer (because the site is in beta and the question I answered was in the HNQ). As a new user, I'm unfamiliar with the meta discussions where the site decided what's on and off topic. There's nothing to stop me from voting to close the wrong questions, with little to no feedback that I'm doing it wrong. My experience on other sites doesn't change any of this. That's why I don't vote to close on that site at all.

Also, people have discussed making it so that the bonus doesn't count towards upvoting, although nothing has been decided or done yet.

  • 1
    I'd also note that, in my experience, moderation style doesn't transfer between sites nearly as well as the basic Q&A format, so it's possibly useful that you can't moderate until there's a little bit of "time served" so to speak.
    – Fomite
    Jun 28, 2017 at 22:44
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    @Fomite I actually think that's the most salient point. A high-rep user from, say, Stack Exchange proper may, without any prior exposure, find almost every question and answer here too subjective.
    – xLeitix
    Jun 30, 2017 at 14:20

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