I have seen discussions where some users explicitly mentioned that they tend to go back to questions and answers they downvoted (or voted to close) and if they were sufficiently improved, they retract their downvote and perhaps upvote (in the case of closed/on-hold questions they vote to reopen). Some discussion about this was also in comments to this recent posts: Why doesn't voting to close or downvoting encourage follow-up? - it is a feature request which suggest some changes which (maybe) might make this easier or motivate more users to check on their past downvotes/close votes.

Perhaps various ways to do this would be more visible in separate post than in comments on a different (albeit related) discussion. And if they are posted here as answers, we can also discuss their advantages and disadvantages.

Here I would like to ask about methods which are already available, without adding new features to the site?

  • If you try to follow up on your past down- or close-votes, what methods do you use to check on them?
  • Even if you don't do this, have you some suggestions on what can be used for this purpose using the tools already available?

DISCLAIMER: When composing this question, the system suggested this among similar questions: Checking your old downvotes. Basically the difference is only that the older post only asks about downvotes. OTOH the question is more than 5 years old, probably there were changes on this site since then which might guarantee a new discussion.

I will leave for others to decide whether the posts should be considered duplicates. (And maybe there are more candidates for duplicates which I did not notice.) Depending on whether this question remains open, we can than continue the discussion here or in some of the duplicate questions.


2 Answers 2


Two methods to follow votes are:

  1. The standard method to follow a question in general terms is to bookmark it. This also can be used to this more specific end. When one anticipates that one wants to come back to a question-thread (for whatever reason) one can bookmark it. In doing so, one has not only a link to the post in the bookmarks tab one will even be alerted to edits and comments on the question (as well as new answers, but this seems less relevant for the present context). It is possible to search in bookmarks using 'inbookmarks:mine'. So one can filter out on-hold/closed questions and sort them by activity if one wants to see whether some of them were edited. Maybe also noteworthy "bookmarks" is one of the rare places where deleted posts remain visible (for users that can see deleted posts).

  2. Similar to the above there is a more recent option, which is to "follow" posts. It is mostly useful to be updated for comments but it can also be used to keep track of posts.

  3. To track ones votes one has the votes tab. It records all ones votes (up, down, reopen, close, deleted, undelete), and it is also possible to filter out one type of votes but selecting the relevant sub-tab. While there is notification of individual changes there, one can know the status of the post (open/closed) via the title and (deleted/or not) from the color. What's more clicking the small triangle one will see the post in the tab, which would allow to check quickly if, say, a overly terse questions one voted to close got edited into something better.

A more active method:

  1. If one is willing to give up anonymity, one can leave a comment that explains ones vote and suggests improvements, and it even might contain explicit encouragement to signal via a comment-reply that the problems are fixed so that the vote can be altered. This can also be used to find the questions later, by looking in the history of ones comments.

Related, for finding questions that might need and deserve reopen votes in general (mostly for 10k+):

  1. If one is worried that questions may undeservedly stay closed though they got improved, one can look through the (general) history of the reopen-queue. (For users below 10k there are just their own reviews there, but 10k+ see all of them.) Questions that got edited after being closed would usually have an entry there. The number of questions concerned is sufficiently low to make this actually feasible for a somewhat active and motivated user.

  2. The close tab of the 10k+-moderation tools also contains a list of questions with (several) pending reopen votes or recent pending reopen votes, together with some sort-options. (Clicking the triangle allows to expand the list a bit yet not indefinitely.) Similar to 4. this allows to find out about questions that might need and deserve a reopen vote.

  • 4
    $\begingroup$ Since favorites were mentioned, I will add that it is possible to search in favorites using 'infavorites:mine'. So you can filter out on-hold/closed questions and sort them by activity if you want to see whether some of them were edited. And here is a feature request on meta.SE which might help make the favorites more suitable for this purpose: Favorites improvements - search, categorize, personal tags, add note, favorite answer. $\endgroup$ Jul 28, 2017 at 10:09
  • $\begingroup$ I edited in the first part of your comment and added three more options, the last two are not strictly what you asked about here. I included them as it felt apt given the original context. But I could remove it if you think it's too tangential. $\endgroup$
    – quid Mod
    Jul 28, 2017 at 12:14
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    $\begingroup$ Marking as favorite is not silent -- the number of people who have done so is displayed next to the vote totals. Maybe I'm old fashioned, but IMO that conveys a connotation exactly the opposite of what I would like you convey in regard to a thread I have down voted or voted to close. $\endgroup$
    – user14972
    Jul 28, 2017 at 14:16
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @Hurkyl that's true it's not invisible and could be taken as a positive (also due to the name and symbol); and one might also want to be aware of the fact that the favorites of each user are visible to the general public. That said, I do not think that in practice it will convey all that much. While one can even favorite ones own questions, I would not be aware of users trying to game the system by inflating their favorite count by doing this systematically, which in a way might coroberate the claim that hardly anyone cares. Also one does not need to keep up the favorite permanently. $\endgroup$
    – quid Mod
    Jul 28, 2017 at 14:56
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Hurkyl Not too long ago there was a question about this on meta.MO: What's the purpose of the favorite button? In my answer there I link to two older posts from this meta I was able to find: Why favorite but not upvote? and Would you ever favourite a question you down vote? $\endgroup$ Jul 28, 2017 at 15:34
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @quid Lol, I certainly do not think favorites attract upvotes. However, favoriting one's own question would be helpful if you want to keep track of certain questions of your own (which may not be popular, but nonetheless interesting to yourself) and have a lot of questions. $\endgroup$ Jul 28, 2017 at 17:51
  • $\begingroup$ @SimplyBeautifulArt I agree there can be legitimate reasons to self-favorite. I alluded to what I think is a main one in the post: there questions remain listed even after deletion. $\endgroup$
    – quid Mod
    Jul 28, 2017 at 19:11

Here's a quick'n'dirty do it yourself:

  • Click on the clock icon at the top left of the answer.
  • Right click on the "Timeline for …" line near the top and grab the link URL.
  • Paste it into a Answers_That_I_Want_To_Revisit file, possibly with a comment.

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