I have been thinking about the general model on which the stack exchange sites work and I feel like academia.stackexchange is rather flawed. The model is essentially that lay practitioners are able to prove their experience in a socially recognized way (upvotes) and are therefore granted corresponding privileges. In this scenario, academia, however, the qualifications of the people answering ought to be more important. After all, the social consensus will only point to the answers which ought to be how things are, and might not really reflect reality. Without going into the details, if someone who has never been on say, a faculty hiring committee, rushes to answer how one's research might be judged and gains upvotes (or simply has no downvotes which are visible), then the person asking the question is not getting a good answer.
The gist of it is, that for this particular stack exchange, proving credentials ought to be linked to reputation stakes, atleast in terms of downvotes. Given that the number of faculty active here is at any point in time going to be fewer than the number of students and academic staff (research assistants, like myself), I feel that verified faculty ought to be awarded downvote rights.
tl;dr: Is it meaningful to allow answers from people who may not have experience in the area in which the answer is being sought?