I endured a 6 month ban, then posted my first question in a long time in September. I was about to post a new question today just to discover I had been banned again.

It puzzles me because that question had a score of +2 and an answer that has +5. To me, this indicates that the question was found to be interesting or helpful to a good handful of people (~400 views as well).

For convenience, it can be found here:Why were male oracles replaced by female oracles?

Moreover, not to boast, but my questions are always formatted quite methodically, with quotes, markdown and so forth.

I can accept being banned, but it does seem the site is banning me despite the value I'm bringing to the community (as measured by the net balance of upvotes on the vast majority of my questions). So in a sense, it's the community that loses out.


Is there a way to determine what led to my ban being reapplied? It just seems unrealistic to expect me to improve further: these are already specialist questions that require weeks or months of reading, posing the question as normatively as possible, showing my previous research effort in a concise way, ect.

  • 3
    Not a moderator, but unless I'm mistaken, these bans are usually dealt out by the system, not local votes or moderators. Look at This answer for some relevant info.
    – justCal
    Oct 30, 2023 at 19:13
  • @justCal I did read that before, upon my first ban. I suppose what it had not cleared up for me is how the account can be banned again when I have only posted one question, crucially, a well-received question. If anything, this question should have strengthened my standing with the SE algo, but alas my understanding appears to be flawed. Oct 31, 2023 at 4:23

1 Answer 1


I did a little more research, and This question on the main Meta site would seem to address your situation. Here is what might possibly be the relevant portion (emphasis mine) from the answer there:

Automatic bans never expire or "time out". This means that you cannot simply wait for a certain amount of time. If you do not take action, you will never be allowed to freely post again. The only way for the ban to be lifted is by contributing positively to the site in other ways.

Moderators cannot lift the ban.

Before you do anything else, fix your existing posts! As noted above, downvotes cast by the rest of the community factor into the ban - so the single best thing you can do to get it lifted is to address any objections raised by others. Were your past questions unclear? Did they fail to show any effort on your part? Poorly worded, titled, formatted, and overly long or short? Then fix them!

Note the emphasis on fixing. Do not delete your posts. As explained above, negative marks on deleted posts do still count towards the question ban, and the fact that they are deleted can also count against you (with the exception of questions that are 30 days or older when deleted). Deleting your posts does not help to lift the ban. Only fixing does! You can see a list of your own deleted questions and answers.

Do note that rewriting an existing question into a substantially different question is frowned upon. Your edits should not negate or invalidate existing answers. The fixed post should fundamentally be about the same issue and topic, and the existing answers should still apply to it.

If you're blocked from asking questions and are unable to improve your existing questions (or your existing questions are all deleted), you'll get the chance to post one new question 6 months after your last question. Your block will still remain once that question is posted, but a single positively-received question could be enough to lift you out of the block. (This does not apply to answer bans.)

If you are banned from asking questions, then writing a few quality answers that get upvoted might enable you to ask questions again. But as the internals of the filter are secret, there is no way to know for sure.

If you really, really think the ban is an error, then email the team directly using the "contact us" link provided at the bottom of every page. But note that reactivation of banned accounts is not a high priority.

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