After I up- or down-vote something/someone, I notice that I can't later change my mind. Why is this? I've certainly had reason to have a change of heart!

  • 1
    Maybe this is considered an abuse of the voting system, but one can change votes after the relevant post has been edited (or, in case of a question, retagged). And you have the reputation to edit other people's posts.
    – lockstep
    Sep 10, 2010 at 10:50
  • 2
    @lockstep: I'd count editing a post to change one's vote an abuse: it can cause the post to be CWified. Better to ask the poster if they wouldn't mind editing their own post. Sep 10, 2010 at 13:06
  • I regret that in one very maladroit moment I gave my first and only downvote by accidently clicking in the wrong (very tiny) pixel on my laptop screen. Furious reclicking did nothing to improve the situation. I rather like the way, for example, reddit.com provides the means for extricating yourself from this situation if you like. Clicking the reverse direction nullifies the first vote rather than recording a vote in the opposite direction. Sadly, I can only apologise to the person I very accidently demeaned. Sep 11, 2010 at 11:18
  • 5
    @Geoffrey: You can reverse a mistaken vote for a short time after you cast it, by clicking again on the now lit arrow. After doing this, you can't vote at all until the post is edited. Sep 11, 2010 at 19:47
  • Thanks Charles, it seemed to work that way after my reclicking following my mistake. I wasn't left feeling too sure about that tho, since I was still awarded a -1 penalty (I think, although I could really be confused). I put the -1 down to a special SE maladroitness tax. Sep 12, 2010 at 23:07
  • 1
    I can certainly see why one can't retract an upvote (except in the first few minutes), but it does seem like it would be best if one could retract a downvote or a "neutral" vote (which I seem to recall having accidentally locked in a few times on SO by retracting an up- or down- vote)...
    – SamB
    Nov 30, 2010 at 16:45
  • 1
    @Geoffrey: you can audit your rep at the URL tex.stackexchange.com/reputation
    – SamB
    Nov 30, 2010 at 16:47

1 Answer 1


According to https://meta.stackexchange.com/a/61431/163868 this is to prevent vote gaming. You can however change a vote after the post in question has been edited.


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