Why does every post here gets downvoted and disregarded, even though many users here are not even professional historians? Much condescension and feeling of self value, for someone as partial, dont you think?

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    Posting historically irrelevant questions here is a kind of spamming. I got downvoted several times too, I always asked in comment what is the problem, sometimes I didn't get answer. I survived. Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 9:11
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    Their approach is abominable
    – Bak1139
    Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 9:12
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    I checked your questions, I upvoted one of your negative rated questions. Well... I am sure you need to learn how to deal with downvotes, I mean for me it is more important to get and give answers than reputation, that is just a number. Take it easy. Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 9:14
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    I appricate your gesture, but I want to sniff for the policy here, since it has long become a pattern
    – Bak1139
    Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 9:17
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    Let us continue this discussion in chat. Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 9:19
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    Obviously "every" post is not downvoted. I checked your rep stats. It seems you got upvoted several times. In the recent past you did get some downvotes. Maybe you can assess best why this happened. I can't comment because your questions deal largely with areas which are outside my area of interest. But I do believe you should calm down and take a critical look at your questions. I don't think people drive personal agendas here, and I certainly never felt condescension. Of course, there were several differences of opinion. Cheers.
    – Rajib
    Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 10:05
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    meta.history.stackexchange.com/questions/889/… is similar, and might provide you with the answer you are looking for.
    – Kobunite
    Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 10:50
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    I think your problem is that you are treating the site like a discussion forum for politics. Obviously, that is going to result in a lot of downvotes. stackexchange is not a rant forum, its for people that have genuine FACTUAL questions. Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 15:02
  • well Durden, that's what I have, and beside the two are related...
    – Bak1139
    Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 15:04
  • Tyler Durden given the fact you sometimes bash Israel in your answers, you cannot say much about being neutral either
    – Bak1139
    Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 15:06
  • Tyler Durden and please lets avoid calling names like ranter each other, since it can also be easily applied to you
    – Bak1139
    Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 15:13

4 Answers 4


I think you've raised several very good questions that I think we as a community need to address fairly. I think the tone of your question seriously undermines the validity of your question. Please participate within the guidelines of the help center; H:SE is not about you, it is about history. You are one of the curators of the site; if you don't like the way the site is curated, then please fulfill your responsibility to use your votes prudently, to use meta to describe problems and to propose solutions. Please stop using the comments to issue edicts and new rules about what we are and are allowed to do, and to cuss at and insult the other members. Examining your question:

. . . downvoted and disregarded, . . . Downvoted because that is the way the site works. Downvotes are a feature of the site, not a bug. SE is built on the presumption that votes determine quality. Participation in any SE site is an implicit grant of permission for everyone else on the site to vote on your content, either up or down. Sometimes the downvotes are unfair, but anyone who told you that life or SE was fair was lying to you. Complaining about downvotes is an implicit assertion that your opinion is more valuable than the opinion of anyone else in the world.

Do posts get disregarded? No - objectively not. To quote a movie, "I don't think that word means what you think it means." Your posts in particular have generated comment trails that are exceed the guidelines of the site. Your posts get tremendous regard. You may wish that they generated more positive regard; many members of SE have offered suggestions that would garner more positive feedback. Drop the attitude, recognize that you are an equal member of the community, and that you will be subjected to the same standards as everyone else.

. . . even though many users here are not even professional historians? I fail to see the relevance. The help center clearly states, "History Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for historians and history buffs." (emphasis added). I don't recall the name of this particular rhetorical fallacy - it seems to combine ad hominem with appeal to authority. It isn't relevant. There is no requirement to be a professional historian, just to be interested in history. You don't define the qualifications to participate, and you don't get to complain because people who follow the rules are participating.

Much condescension and feeling of self value, for someone as partial, don't you think? I think this is full of attitude, but I think the underlying complaint is legitimate and deserves to be addressed. We all need to be more civil and respectful to one another. (I admit my hypocrisy. Despite my continued requests for civility, I have fallen short of the goal. I forget who accused me of "withering sarcasm", but I've taken that to heart. I'm doing my best to be as civil as I can in this post.)

Let's talk about solutions.

  • I've attempted to provide the reasons why I downvote. That post should be community wiki so that anyone can contribute to it and use that to provide additional feedback.

  • The Help Center provides guidelines for good questions, good answers, editing, and general behavior. The help center isn't perfect, but we have a mechanism to revise it and improve it. We've done so recently. Change will come about because of reasoned discussion, not personal attacks.

  • Chat & meta - I would estimate that about half the long comment strings and the majority of the arguments that degenerate into personal attacks could be resolved successfully in meta or chat if the participants were willing to do so. (recent changes to SE code have made it difficult to securely access both chat and meta; I have to note my hypocrisy again because although I can't get to either, I haven't submitted a feature request to meta. shame on me)

Summary: Drop the attitude, and join us as a co-curator. Work with your fellow curators to improve the site. Do so through reason and persuasion; intransigence, abuse, and cussing will not help your cause.


I get your point; a few people have made it in the past and it is fairly raised. In my experience here, questions that are not specifically historical are closed and deleted reasonably quickly.

Equally, questions that show little or no research or are just based on a common assumption or other bit of trivia are usually closed (I fell fowl of this when I first posted here...).

Now, out of the three non-meta questions you've had closed I personally voted to close one and would have voted to close another if it hadn't already been.

Your Patterns for World Wars question is the one I would have voted for. That's simply because of this in the help centre:

Don't ask about...

Asking for reference material
Predicting the future based on historical trends
Conspiracy theories or pseudoscience

I agree with you though, that it would be an interesting discussion and I would enjoy looking into it. That said though, there isn't a definitive answer to it and it's always going to be very subjective; that's why I would have voted to close.

Next, the Founding of Rome question. I think is fine, it's a little thin on the ground and is close to being trivia, but I feel that a good, unique answer could have been written for it. Oldcat provided a reasonably good answer but I think that someone who knows a lot on the subject could provide more information.

One thing that might have contributed to it being closed could have been the attitude taken towards outside input into the question. I think the edits made were valid, and didn't change the scope, meaning or intention of the question - just improved it's format and provided more background to the reader. It might have wound people up, telling them that they cannot do something that the creators and moderators of SE allow, and that could have lead to the question being closed.

Finally, we have "Have Adolf Hitler ever personally witnessed any of his crimes?", the question I did vote to close.

I voted to close it because it was too general - I realistically shouldn't have selected the option I did; I should have selected "Too Broad". The number of crimes that Hitler committed is huge, and varies depending on who you are and from what perspective you look at it legally; i.e. International Law, National Law etc. Reducing the scope of the question to limit it to one area or specific type of crime would see me voting to re-open it.

As it stands though, it has two good answers, and there is an argument that if it has good answers then the question is of some value to the site.

The remainder of your questions have a substantial amount of upvotes, in fact many of the closed questions also gained upvotes.

What I'm saying is that out of the 3 questions you've made that have been closed 2 of them stand a good chance of being re-opened and answered if they were edited to reflect some of the feedback.


In your case trivia, poor quality (no basic research attempt), off topic, discussion bait.

Most of these should have been close votes rather than downvotes.

The standard expected here isn't profession or academia, but adequate amateurism or hobbyism.

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    calling names isn't doing good for you , mate, but people like you are the reason this forum has problems today, you must be very proud of yourself
    – Bak1139
    Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 15:17
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    who are YOU to determine quality anyway?
    – Bak1139
    Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 15:19
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    @Bak1139 You asked why your questions were downvoted, and when an (apparent) downvoter explained, you ask them not to tell you what they think? This isn't name calling, it's explaining the perceived shortcomings in your questions. Why ask if you don't want an answer? Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 17:21
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    And as to your second question, who is he to determine quality? A VOTER. This is what this site is based on. If you have 125 rep, you can downvote, and that makes you eligible to determine quality, just like everyone else with that privilege. This is how this works. Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 17:21
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    I want Russell boy here to answer for his rants
    – Bak1139
    Commented Aug 9, 2014 at 14:23
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    fine if so than my level of quesitons should be fine and not bother anyone at all.....hobbyism at its finest
    – Bak1139
    Commented Aug 10, 2014 at 8:37

I often see downvoting without proper explanation, I think it is pretty much impossible to force people to make an explanation for downvotes.

My personal guidelines on votes:

  • Downvote if I think the question is too obvious to tell, or it is silly at all. I am willing to leave comment there why is the downvote.
  • No vote if I have no personal interest on the subject, but I read the question anyways.
  • Upvote if I am interested in the subject even if the question is not the best quality. In these cases I leave comment there or try to improve it.

On the other hand: human beings are asking and answering here. Therefore no way to exclude subjective points. A question might be downvoted, because it might be touching emotionally somebody. Issues on religion, closer events like holocaust etc... these are living things. If you really want an answer, well, you have to suffer through downvotes, but you can try to improve your question.

  • Well, the answer downvote button tooltip states clearly "This answer is not useful." There have been times I have down-voted answers based on the fact that in my opinion "the answer given was not useful" to me. I don't need to explain any further. The question downvote button says "this question does not show any research effort; it is unclear or is not useful." If, again, in my opinion, the question asked is not useful to the site with the site's specific rules, is not a clearly worded question, and/or the author showed no effort of research, then downvote. No explanation is required.
    – CGCampbell
    Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 21:07
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    If the SE curators were to decide to tie a explanatory requirement to either an up- or down-vote, then I will fully explain every time.
    – CGCampbell
    Commented Aug 8, 2014 at 21:08

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