I'm relatively new on Math Stack Exchange, so if this question is already answered, please direct me to it.

During the few days that I have been on Stack Exchange, I saw some perfectly good questions and posts being down-voted for no particular reason. Is it possible to see the reason for these down-votes?

As maddening as it is to lose reputation, it's worse when someone down-votes and you cannot see the reason.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ no it's not.... $\endgroup$
    – Surb
    Jul 2, 2017 at 23:07
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Close voting involves a "reason" category, but down voting (and up voting) do not. If you hover your mouse pointer over the up/down arrows, you'll see text tips about whether the Question "shows research effort" and "is useful and clear". Of course there is a subjective element to these judgements, and no "enforcement" of such criteria is generally possible. However voting aimed at a particular user, rather than at the content of Questions, is not approved and may be identified as "serial down-voting" through an automated process. $\endgroup$
    – hardmath
    Jul 3, 2017 at 2:05
  • 8
    $\begingroup$ When you have some sort of question or complaint about downvotes, you should try and think about the same issue with upvotes. Would you like every upvote to be explained? $\endgroup$
    – Asaf Karagila Mod
    Jul 3, 2017 at 8:51
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ You can find many posts here in Meta on the theme: "why was my question downvoted?" Perhaps read all of those to get some idea. But my advice is: ignore those downvotes. $\endgroup$
    – GEdgar
    Jul 3, 2017 at 13:02
  • $\begingroup$ Explaining every downvote would take way too much time. $\endgroup$
    – Qudit
    Jul 9, 2017 at 19:13
  • $\begingroup$ welcome to the ground math.meta.stackexchange.com/posts/27243/revisions $\endgroup$
    – Guy Fsone
    Oct 22, 2017 at 13:57

1 Answer 1


Anonymous voting is one of the fundamentals on which the Stack Exchange network is built upon. So whilst it is possible for someone to voluntarily disclose their reason for down voting - there is and likely never will be an obligation to do so.


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