Questions and answers can be edited. Why votes should stay fixed after some time?

I find that the main importance for votes is to give information to the future reader about the question and the answers. By voting questions can be organized (roughly) by popularity and this popularity reflects (roughly): How well written it is. How important it is. How many others have had that question.

Likewise, votes help organize several answers to a question according (roughly) to popularity, and this popularity reflecting (roughly): How useful it is. How well written it is.

Addendum: Of course, an edit is not the only reason for a vote change. As well as editing an answer can have the purpose of fixing a mistake. So can be a change of vote.

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    $\begingroup$ There is a lot of documentation on this at Meta.StackOverflow. $\endgroup$ – Lord_Farin Jun 29 '13 at 21:30
  • $\begingroup$ Is that a feature that comes from a parent site, out the hands of this one? $\endgroup$ – OR. Jun 29 '13 at 21:35
  • $\begingroup$ Does this (particularly the first paragraph) answer the question in your comment? $\endgroup$ – Lord_Farin Jun 29 '13 at 21:37
  • $\begingroup$ The link took me to a bunch of questions on the topic. I am going over some of the answers to them. Is that what you wanted to link? I ask because you mention some first paragraph? $\endgroup$ – OR. Jun 29 '13 at 21:40
  • $\begingroup$ I believe we had some miscommunication and have edited my second comment accordingly. To be clear, I indeed intended to link to the host of questions and answers on MSO on the topic. $\endgroup$ – Lord_Farin Jun 29 '13 at 21:41
  • $\begingroup$ I read some of it. Now I think I know the main reasons they do it. A very crude patch. Although I didn't explicitly read if the issue belongs only to stackexchange and cannot be decided for each children site individually, I will assume it is so. Then this question doesn't belong here. $\endgroup$ – OR. Jun 29 '13 at 22:20

Votes can be changed if the question has been edited since the vote was cast.

  • $\begingroup$ Makes sense. Of course, an edit is not the only reason for a vote change. As editing an answer can have the purpose of fixing a mistake. So can be a change of vote. I think I should add this to the question. $\endgroup$ – OR. Jun 29 '13 at 20:39
  • $\begingroup$ Notice that still this doesn't answer the original question. Why the votes get fixed after some time? $\endgroup$ – OR. Jun 29 '13 at 21:24
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    $\begingroup$ @Franklin.vp It addresses what appeared to me to be your primary concern. The votes get fixed after some time so that people have some security in their reputations, and so that one cannot simply decide one day "oh, I'm mad at this user (or this whole site), time to remove all my upvotes!". $\endgroup$ – Alex Becker Jun 29 '13 at 21:26
  • $\begingroup$ I suspected that it was related to reputation. But was waiting to be told for sure. I will add to the question what I think about that. I think it is just laziness in the programming of the site, after all, the hold can be put in the reputation: If a vote is changed after some time, the reputation earned doesn't change while the vote still can be changed. $\endgroup$ – OR. Jun 29 '13 at 21:31
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    $\begingroup$ After all. the biggest importance of this site is not the game of reputations but to be informative and educative. It is more important to have proper ranking of the answers and comments than of the credits of the users. $\endgroup$ – OR. Jun 29 '13 at 21:33
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    $\begingroup$ @Franklin.vp: And even more important is not to confuse the users, or make them somewhat annoyed by severe fluctuations in their reputation. Or else users won't join the site and it would die. $\endgroup$ – Asaf Karagila Jun 30 '13 at 6:32
  • $\begingroup$ What a nonsense. On one hand, reputation can be locked independently of vote changes. On the other, Wikipedia, Urban dictionary, Topology Atlas, ... all work well without visible users reputations. The reason people come here is to learn and to teach. For no one should there be a doubt that people will have the need to ask, but don't underestimate for a second the need to be heard. That, above all is what keeps all these sites going, not some reputation game that means next to nothing. $\endgroup$ – OR. Jun 30 '13 at 8:02
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    $\begingroup$ @Franklin.vp: By this logic all the modern economy is What a nonsense. People come into this world to live and to breed offsprings. They have been doing that for far longer without the concepts of money, ownership, and for that matter - bread. There's absolutely no way that people anywhere will be interested in accumulating money, possessions or bread! $\endgroup$ – Asaf Karagila Jun 30 '13 at 8:52

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