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From Why is there no reputation change in meta:

I wasn't around when the meta on the main trilogy was formed, but meta we down vote things we don't want to see. It's like a caucus or straw vote. If I raise a controversial issue and everyone disagrees - the downvotes shouldn't take away from my reputation on the main site and you don't really earn reputation here to participate - you earn reputation on the main site to qualify to ask and answer here.

Why are these badges here:

  • Mortarboard - Earn 200 reputation in a single day

  • Epic - Earn 200 reputation 50 times

  • Legendary - Earn 200 reputation 150 times

Badges are separate on Meta so why are these here?

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Because - believe it or not - you still earn reputation on Meta; it is just not shown and the main site's reputation is shown instead. Each upvote on an answer counts as +10 towards these badges, and each upvote on a question as +5, just like they would do on the main site.

If you track the Epic or Legendary badge in your (Meta) profile and click on the progress bar, you'll see that you earned some 'virtual' reputation on Meta today. Since this Meta is not so active, these badges are very rare. They're more common on larger Metas like Stack Overflow's.

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For more information, see “Mortarboard” continues to be awarded on Meta Stack Overflow.

  • Wow, you learn something new every day! :) I knew our participation was measured in some way, but never realised it worked exactly the same way as the main site, but just invisibly! – Monomeeth Jan 10 at 20:51

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