this is my first visit here and my attempts to comment on a certain Siri post were halted by a prompt for registration. Upon meeting that requirement, my efforts were subsequently derailed by yet another prompt saying that said I needed 50 "reputation". It kind of reminds me of bronchitis... Ain't nobody got time for that.

Now, is my opinion that the requirements for new users to participate in this forum are inane and exorbitant. I'm sure once I ask a few questions it will be smooth sailing, however, I can't muster up a single Apple questions so this question is my attempt to gain some reputation as well as share my opinion.

I understand that one need 15 reputation points to rate a comment up and 50 to even post a comment. This is most likely set in place to protect the integrity of the content, however, I don't think it's working... One of your users asked if Siri was available for Mac and they rated his question DOWN. Who does that? Where I come from, the only stupid question is the one not asked (and maybe this one).

As for myself, I am an engineer, Apple certified technician, computer store franchise owner, IOS dev and 3-time world karate champion. I didn't join to ask questions, but rather to help. Alas, if asking questions is how one gains "reputation", then you can expect questions like this from me. I'm just saying, I'm a seasoned pro. The multiple certifications on my wall is my "reputation".

  • As for your last point – doesn't it work like that in the Apple Forums? You need to help out in order to "get reputation" and level up. I feel like this is similar to what occurs on Stack Exchange. Much of what you described is characteristic of the whole SE network, as opposed to just of this site. That's just how Ask Different, StackOverflow, and sites on the SE network in general work
    – Oion Akif
    Commented Mar 15, 2018 at 18:24

3 Answers 3


Start here: https://apple.stackexchange.com/help/whats-reputation.

You earn Rep by people voting on your contribution. Initially that's Questions and Answers. Doesn't matter which. As you warn more Rep, you gain greater privileges that allow you to comment and so on.

This is in order to gradually break users into how the site works, and to prevent people from providing answers in comments and all sorts of other behaviour that is well intended but not a good fit for how the site works. Once you have gained sufficient rep on any Stack Exchange Site, you automatically get 101 starter rep on other sites to prevent you having to go through this hoop more than once.

As for voting, people are free to vote up or down as they see fit. We rely on consensus to ensure the good stuff is up voted, and the bad stuff voted down. Usually it works great. Sometimes is throws out odd results, especially on posts with little voting. We cannot see, even as moderators, who voted for who or what, and we certainly never ask why. If you think it's a good question, go vote it up! However, see @grgarside's comment; the poster of the question appears to have posted a "jeopardy" style questions purely to promote a product. In this case, a flag to the Mod team is appropriate (and was received) in addition to the down vote.

I hope you get into how things work, there is a good logic to most of it, and by and large it's all about getting quality content and avoiding discussions, commentary and disagreements that can make other sites a pain to use.

As a last point to note, I moved this into "Meta", which is where we go to ask questions about the site, rather then on it.


You primarily gain reputation by answering questions.

I did feel a little constrained when I first joined, but by answering a few easy questions I got above 50 rep in my first day of effort. Each up vote of a question or answer is worth 10 points.

Rather than needing people to take exams or have certificates, the community gives reputation to those that put out useful content.

  • 1
    Ultimately the site exists to attract and reward great answers. Dwight's comments ring true and just answer well and the rest works out in the end.
    – bmike Mod
    Commented Apr 8, 2014 at 1:47

For what it's worth, I think you end up losing a lot of potential contributors coming in with potentially valuable input on specific problems they're facing by requiring them to answer other questions just in order to leave a comment.

Potential new contributors are going to come into the site by clicking through google search results describing a problem they're having and finding an SE question along the same lines. They've likely got an immediately pressing issue they're actively trying to solve. So, the idea that they're going to go answer some other un-related questions ... ?

In my case, I was attempting to provide some feedback on a specific issue I was facing, describing some things I'd already tried. This is a normal part of diagnosing an issue and it's valuable, even if you don't have a final answer. I couldn't comment, so I left it as an answer. An initial editor kindly moved it to a comment before deleting it.

However, a follow-up comment that I tried to leave (responding to a suggestion in another comment) was summarily deleted. Again, I couldn't leave it as a comment, so it was left as an answer in the hopes that an editor would again move it to the comment thread.

When one's feedback gets deleted like that, one is not particularly inclined to go try to answer some other questions not related to the issue at hand just to leave one's feedback.

  • 4
    You have the association bonus, so you should be able to post comments. The 50 points threshold may seem hard. But if we did not have it, the comment sections would soon turn into reddit or 9gag. The few valuable comments would be lost in the noise. Requiring that people prove themselves, before allowing them to comment, is the lesser of two evils. Commented Jan 26, 2017 at 14:11

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