On my reputation tab in Math SE, I found out that I have lost 28 reputation in total from deleted questions, which is more than 20% of my total reputation. I think that this is an important issue, since when I look at other users none of them have had anywhere near the same percentage of reputation lost compared to me.

Is this normal? I feel that these reputation changes are damaging to me, since I feel my efforts are not rewarded, which makes me sometimes want to quit writing answers altogether.

Moderators — Can you please give me all the reputation back lost from deleted questions and investigate the source of the reputation changes?

To clarify, I am not asking for revenge against these users, I just want a clear and open investigation as to why this has happened and also some advice on how I can improve my answers.

EDIT: The question has been resolved; I appreciate everyone's feedback and will try to avoid poorly worded questions next time I answer.

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    $\begingroup$ I have trouble ascertaining what deletions you talk about. Unless I made a mistake, of your deleted answers only one had a positive score, and you deleted that yourself. Your deleted question had no upvotes nor downvotes. Are you sure you have lost points due to deletions? Your reputation tab shows a few recent downvotes though. Are you worried about downvotes rather than deletions? $\endgroup$ May 26 '17 at 7:27
  • $\begingroup$ Re: since when I look at other users none of them have had anywhere near the same percentage of reputation lost compared to me. If I remember correctly, deleted post are shown on the reputation tab only to the owner (if they checked "show removed post" box.) Just check your reputation tab when not logged in, or look here. So if you checked reputation tabs of some other users, it is possible that they also lost some reputation due to deleted post, it is simply not displayed there. $\endgroup$ May 26 '17 at 7:29
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    $\begingroup$ Ok. I did find this deleted question (the link will show it to any user with more than 10k rep). That question was deleted by the Community user, because it had no answers with a positive score, and the asker had abandoned it. The question was heavily downvoted, and judged to be a poor fit for our site. Your answer there had one upvote and one downvote, giving you +10-2=+8 rep points. You lost those when the question was deleted. The advice: when you answer a bad question, there is a higher than normal risk of losing the points afterwards. $\endgroup$ May 26 '17 at 7:29
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    $\begingroup$ So, the impression I get is that you are not really targeted. The percentage-wise large loss can be explained by your low total number of posts. Of $<30$ posts random deletions may affect a higher fraction than of $\approx 3000$ posts. Yet, this is just an impression. I will dig a bit deeper when I have more time. The Community user is a bot, so there is no malice behind its actions :-) $\endgroup$ May 26 '17 at 7:36
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks @JyrkiLahonen, your advice makes sense on why others might downvote and delete. One question — is this behaviour normal? Do you know of any other people that had a similar experience like me? $\endgroup$
    – Toby Mak
    May 26 '17 at 8:17
  • $\begingroup$ I will also mention that another possibility how a user can lose reputation is if a question, where you made a suggest edit, was deleted. This happened to this suggested edit of yours, which lead to losing 2 reputation points. (The edit was suggested and approved on May 2, the question was deleted by community user on May 12.) $\endgroup$ May 26 '17 at 8:37
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    $\begingroup$ @Martin Sleziak Thanks for the information $\endgroup$
    – Toby Mak
    May 26 '17 at 10:39
  • $\begingroup$ Please explain the downvotes, my comments on @hardmath's repsonses were a misunderstanding. I have edited my answer, which means downvotes can be changed now. $\endgroup$
    – Toby Mak
    May 27 '17 at 2:49
  • $\begingroup$ @TobyMak, I believe that downvotes on metaMSE indicate disagreement, rather than disapproval as on the main site. $\endgroup$
    – LSpice
    Jan 18 '18 at 23:14

Note that the FAQ on How do I write a good answer? has a section called Answer well-asked questions:

Not all questions can or should be answered here. Save yourself some frustration and avoid trying to answer questions which...
* ...are unclear or lacking specific details that can uniquely identify the problem.
* ...solicit opinions rather than facts.
* ...have already been asked and answered many times before.
* ...require too much guidance for you to answer in full, or request answers to multiple questions.
* ...are not about math as defined in the help center.

Even as a new user, I'd advise you to be selective in choosing which Questions to tackle. In the big scheme of things a gain of reputation points will not be as satisfying as learning some new math or helping someone more motivated by a desire to learn than to cajole Readers into doing their thinking for them.

When there are open clarification requests in Comments on a question, it might be a sign that the OP hasn't yet gotten the question into a final form. Your efforts to answer according to your own interpretation may have the best intentions, but if the Question never reaches a satisfactory formulation, your work may be deleted if the Question is disposed of.

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    $\begingroup$ @TobyMak I think you should read hardmath's answer again. It addresses point (2) in your second comment rather than the intrinsic quality or the relevance of your answers. $\endgroup$
    – epimorphic
    May 27 '17 at 0:10
  • $\begingroup$ Just to confirm, my advice assumes you are writing correct and thoughtful answers, but raises the point "not all questions can or should be answered here". With experience you will develop your own heuristics for selecting which posts are worth your effort. Occasionally one can steer a poorly worded Question into the realm of good content, through a combination of Edits and articulate Answer. Cf. the bronze Explainer badge and its silver counterpart. $\endgroup$
    – hardmath
    May 27 '17 at 0:24
  • $\begingroup$ Sorry for the misunderstanding @hardmath $\endgroup$
    – Toby Mak
    May 27 '17 at 2:47

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