Islam is the religion of truth (which makes the topic easy to discuss), but persecution punishing people for asking in the form of anonymous down voting is rampart. I think people are sensitive about what they consider to be the truth, so when you push for a reason you get punished.

I didnt expect that on this site.

Is there no reason why because I am wrong?

This is asking comparatively if and/or why downvoting without comments happen more on this site. Not for methods to deal with downvoting. Is this opinion based content off topic for Meta?

  • 2
    There's a saying that might apply: "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all." Personally, I think downvotes are often nicer than critical comments. But it sounds like you might have a specific post in mind? Aug 18, 2015 at 0:24
  • Unfortunately all my posts are in mind :) but I think the discussion is more important than rep. Although I get the point, I dont think it applies here so thats why Im asking.
    – user13203
    Aug 18, 2015 at 0:40
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    Anonymous downvoting is persecution? Hyperbole.
    – TRiG
    Aug 19, 2015 at 16:33
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    @JonEricson Actually, i dug some squishy numbers out of SEDE (data.stackexchange.com/islam/query/353499/…), and the "uncommented downvotes" ratio looks way higher on I.SE than on any other site I've checked (although I hardly checked them all). I'm reopening this as it probably does warrant meta discussion here.
    – goldPseudo Mod
    Aug 19, 2015 at 20:27
  • @TRiG Intentional hyperbole, but perhaps too much. I edited it, Thanks.
    – user13203
    Aug 19, 2015 at 22:44

3 Answers 3


I think the main cause are the dependent on the moderators being too strict.

I have used several other SE websites, and at many times when I downvote something I don't like I would leave a comment on why, regardless on how stupid or silly such comments on I never had an issues with moderators.

However, this doesn't seem to align with moderators on the Islamic SE. After doing that a few times I got a moderator notice, stating that downvote shouldn't reflect my personal feelings but on how the answer/question are constructed, written and backed. I have tried to do so, but sometimes there are answers or questions that you just can't control yourself to downvote (we are all humans).

So personally, I always avoid adding a comment unless it asks a question or request more info. However, I do disagree with something I tend to downvote it.

  • On the whole, I agree with you. Especially the first sentence of you ... which can make the site uninteresting in compare to other sites ... (as my personal opinion). Jazak Allah Khaira Jan 20, 2016 at 11:31

Uncommented downvotes are common (and despised) throughout the Stack Exchange network, so I was curious if the claim that we are significantly worse at this is actually valid. SEDE gave me some interesting numbers (actual query here).

As it turns out, 36.3% of the downvotes received are on posts with no comments whatsoever. For comparison, Christianity.SE is at 16.9% and Judaism.SE 13.5%. Compared to all other sites on the Stack Exchange network, we're the sixth worst in this regard.

So, yeah, the claim seems valid. And now onto the meat of the question: Why?

I obviously cannot speak for everyone on the site — my personal commenting habits are mostly still the same as last year — but I can speculate: Good constructive criticism is hard, probably more-so here where many of our users don't even speak English as a first language.

And for whatever reason, people on this site just aren't open to criticism; as a moderator, I can't even tell you how many times I've received "rude/offensive" flags on comments that were doing nothing more than criticising a post, often with an explanation of exactly what flaws were present and how they could be corrected.

We definitely had a lot more constructive criticism going on in the first year of the site, but, frankly, nobody cared. Comments were often just ignored completely, and that was the in the best of cases; more often than not they were just taken as an excuse to argue, which just drove away most of our core experts.

Either way, they rarely if ever resulted in things showing any actual improvement. And I'm sure this fact is obvious to many if not most of our active users.

Between the difficulty of writing good constructive criticism in the first place, the risk of being targetted personally just for leaving it, and the lack of it ever actually improving anything, I'm really not surprised that many users just don't consider it worth the effort.

If the community wants users to leave more constructive criticism, it is incumbent on the community to welcome constructive criticism. Commenters — like everyone else on this site — are volunteering their time to help others, and nobody really likes feeling as if their efforts are going to waste.

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    6th place isn't as bad as I thought. More participation is a good answer and solution for here and the real world, so I'm going to keep trying to do so. Thanks.
    – user13203
    Aug 22, 2015 at 13:25

I haven't participated on this site very much; I've generally hung out on Phil.SE so it maybe my thoughts on this aren't quite appropriate as you're asking about commenting practise on this site.

It is annoying to have a well thought out answer or question down-voted - it's happened to me a few times; but it ought not to be taken personally - it's definitely not persecution or punishment.

Being offered constructive criticism in a comment in useful; I've altered my answers in the light of them usually.

For example, on one answer for a comment suggested that I hadn't got my history right; whereas it turned out we both agreed on the historical point, but I hadn't deemed it sufficiently important to include it; mainly because I want to keep answers short - but I altered the answer anyway.

Sometimes I get the odd snarky comment because it goes against their preconceptions; and sometimes people do use it to engage in debate or argumentation - but this is what chat is for.

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