I was going to ask a question and I got the following warning:

Wait! Some of your past questions have not been well-received, and you're in danger of being blocked from asking any more.

For help formulating a clear, useful question, see: How do I ask a good question?

Also, edit your previous questions to improve formatting and clarity.

As you can see in my account page, I only have five questions on this site, I don't think they have had such a bad reception. Is this a bug? Or is there a reason I am receiving this message?

  • For non-mods: I see seven questions, two deleted with scores of zero. The details provided by the network suggest that these count toward a ban, although we don't actually know the rules (or indeed control what that page says). I'm not really sure what we 'locally' can say about this!
    – Joseph Wright Mod
    Jan 7, 2015 at 17:07
  • Further to that, I guess out of a total of seven questions you currently have only three with a positive score: that might be it.
    – Joseph Wright Mod
    Jan 7, 2015 at 17:08
  • @JosephWright -- one of the zero-score questions has one up- and one down-vote. (there is no comment explaining the down-vote.) do down-votes enter into the calculation? Jan 7, 2015 at 17:23
  • @JosephWright Is there a time interval after which the score is reset? In other words, do very old questions matter?
    – a06e
    Jan 7, 2015 at 17:44
  • @barbarabeeton I'd seen that but as it's not mod-only left it to others to look at :-) The rules as far as we know do count downvotes, but I could only find one in total over all seven questions so hope that in itself is not the issue.
    – Joseph Wright Mod
    Jan 7, 2015 at 17:49
  • @becko As I've already mentioned, we don't actually know what the rules are! However, I believe that there is no 'reset' on the ban system: if you don't 'improve' the questions it still counts. In particular, it is documented that deleted questions do count.
    – Joseph Wright Mod
    Jan 7, 2015 at 17:51
  • The warning comes long time before you actually get Q-banned. It is just a friendly reminder to behave well, and it itself doesn't mean you have to change anything that happened in the past.
    – yo'
    Jan 10, 2015 at 10:02

2 Answers 2


OK, I've checked with with other mods on the network. Broadly, the warning comes about here as you've got a relative small number of questions (currently 7). Of those, two are deleted and there is one downvote on one other: that makes three 'negative events' in seven questions so raises a warning. I note that both the deleted questions were about JabRef and were clearly off-topic for us, so there's not really a chance to edit and improve them for re-opening. As such, the best you can do is make sure new questions are carefully written: with a few more with a positive score you will probably be safe from a ban. Upvoted answers may also help (I'm not 100% about this: as I say in comments, we don't actually know how the ban system algorithm in detail.)

  • 6
    This is good advice. At a quick glance, @becko, I think you'll be okay if you're careful about on-topic questions going forward. If you do run into more issues, feel free to e-mail [email protected] (and include a link to this meta question, please).
    – Pops
    Jan 7, 2015 at 21:10

On the question, how 'well-received' might be defined this excerpt on the 'Curious'-Badge will give some clue or information:

enter image description here

Perhaps there is another definition behind the 'question-rejection' but otherwise, it could be some explanation, especially the fact, that specific deleted/closed/downvoted questions count thrice.

The excerpt can be found in full extent here: List of all badges with full descriptions

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