I'm still below the reputation to edit posts without them needed to be peer reviewed.

Suppose that I have 1000 approved edits.

Then comes along a user with enough reputation to edit posts without them needed to be peer reviewed, that has 0 approved edits.

So, I have more experience in editing posts than this user.

Which leads me to the question:

Wouldn't make more sense that the editing without peer review privilege is gained by the amount of approved edits instead of an arbitrary reputation score?

EDIT: This is not a personal question, I don't think I should earn the privilege because of my current number of edits. The numbers are just an over exaggeration to make my point clear, shouldn't be taken literally.

  • 3
    Editing is a part of moderation. If the user has 0 edits in first place, I don't think they'd be interested in editing even if 2k reputation is earned.
    – Kulfy
    Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 17:29
  • This seems very personal but as you only have 23 edits I don't get what you are complaining about here, you think because you have 23 edits total you should get the privilege? I do get your frustration, we have all been there but you post is such a massive over exaggeration of your current situation and the case you present as an example would be such a massive outlier, it just comes off as silly. -1
    – Mark Kirby
    Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 17:37
  • @MarkKirby Sorry, but I'm not complaining and it's not personal. I don't think I should earn the privilege because my actual amount of editings. I'm not frustrated, and I don't think my question shows that attitude. Thanks for your (failed) feedback. Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 17:42
  • Your post does read like that and the passive aggressive comment you just left backs that up. Sorry if you don't like my feedback, I am just trying to understand your point here but if you don't want to elaborate, so be it..
    – Mark Kirby
    Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 17:46
  • @MarkKirby You didn't ask me to elaborate, you just assumed (wrongly) what my question is about and went straight to downvoting. Anyways, this won't become an extended discussion. Unless you have a useful comment, I'm not answering anymore. Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 17:51
  • @Kulfy I was trying to make kind a "reductio ad absurdum" to make my point more clear, It shouldn't be taken literally. Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 17:59
  • I clearly was asking for clarification and any, wrong or not, assumptions were made from a reading of your post. My downvote is explained in detail and was in no way something I went "straight to". If you don't want to discuss it, why even bother posting this? You even just said it was an attempt at "reductio ad absurdum" so the fact I find it absurd should be of no surprise to you.
    – Mark Kirby
    Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 18:01
  • 6
    @MarkKirby This post had started by saying "Suppose that I have 1000 approved edits." So "you think because you have 23 edits total you should get the privilege?" does not seem like an accurate guess about the thought process that went into this post. Nothing here remotely supports that interpretation. Downvotes on meta are often used to express disagreement, especially in the feature-request tag, and I am absolutely not suggesting that you should change your vote, nor do you have any obligation to explain votes. But the explanation you did give really does not make sense. Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 18:07
  • @EliahKagan The first line "I'm still below the reputation to edit posts without them needed to be peer reviewed." is what makes me think this is a personal request based on frustration the OP has faced, combined with the over the top example, and no matter how many times I read it, it sounds like that to me. I mentioned the 23 edits out of surprise as I was expecting to see, at least hundreds of them. I don't out right dissargee with the proposal but my downvote represents my confusion at the post.
    – Mark Kirby
    Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 18:15
  • @MarkKirby "I'm still below the reputation to edit posts without them needed to be peer reviewed." is to be interpreted as "this is an example of (user without enough rep)". Sorry if you didn't understood it like this. Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 18:18
  • 1
    OK, fair enough, so let's move away from my confusion and discuss the actual proposal. I think someone who is a prolific editor could find their self in a situation where they could never earn the right to edit freely (rep cap for edits is 1000) and that could be seen as counter productive to the site as that user could get frustrated and potentially just give up. This would be the perfect thing to lock behind some kind of badge (I never understood why badges don't get more love on SE) so when a user with <2k rep has say 250 approved edits they could unlock the privilege.
    – Mark Kirby
    Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 18:28
  • Doing something like that would be a first on SE AFAIK but it would make sense.
    – Mark Kirby
    Commented Aug 30, 2019 at 18:29

1 Answer 1


I don't think the specific change proposed here would be an improvement, but this is a good question.

In the hypothetical situation you described--which is a perfectly plausible situation, considering that many low-rep users do eventually make numerous good suggested edits--I will assume for the sake of simplicity that no corner cases apply, such as edits being approved on posts that are subsequently deleted.

In that case, the first 500 of those approved edits would have conferred +2 reputation each, for a total of 1000 reputation. Since this is the maximum amount of reputation that can be gained from edit approvals, the next 500 approved edits would not have given any reputation, though the user would of course still be credited for having made the edits, in the edited posts' revision histories and elsewhere.

So those 500 rep-conferring edits get the editor halfway to the 2000 rep mark required to edit questions and answers directly without going through review.

Having had edits approved in the past is part of what predicts good edits in the future. But having general experience using the site, and being considered to have made valuable contributions in the form of questions and answers that show useful knowledge or effective research, is relevant to edits, too. As the system stands, edits can bring a user halfway to gaining the rep necessary to edit directly.

Yet it's hard to say how relevant those other rep-generating activities are, compared to a history of making good edits. As you suggest, it does seem like a user who hasn't gained much rep from questions or answers (or has but lost it, perhaps by giving out bounties) but who has made hundreds or thousands of good edits would be more likely to make good edits in the future than someone who has other site experience but very little editing experience.

But what if, in addition to having 1000 edits approved, the user also had 500 other edits rejected?

Under the feature change you've proposed, this user would get the ability to apply edits without review, based on their history of editing in a way that reviewers have judged to be about 67% good. That does not seem right at all.

Having an edit suggestion rejected doesn't take away reputation, and I don't think it should.1 But this means that to make a reasonable prediction of future editing quality based on a user's edit suggestions, the system would have to consider how many were accepted and how many were rejected. This would be quite different from the specific change proposed here. I also think it would have at least three disadvantages, regardless of how it were done:

  1. The Stack Exchange system, which is already immensely complicated, would be even more complicated.

  2. Reviewers would feel the need to consider the impact of their reviews on editors' ability to gain editing privileges, even though they really should not make decisions based on that.

    The specific bad effect I'm most worried about here is reviewers deciding whether or not to reject an edit based on their recollections--or general impressions--of the editor's prior edits and site activity.

  3. Editors--or, in any case, a significant portion of editors--would feel the urge to consider the impact of their edit suggestions on how long it would take them to be able to edit without approval.

    This might seem good at first, but I think it would really lead to defensive editing. That is, I think many low-rep users would both select posts to edit and decide on the content of their edits based more on the desire to make it clear to reviewers that the edits should be approved than on what would actually be most effective at making the site, and those posts, better.

    Often, editors don't make this clear enough. Certainly many edit summaries that I encounter in the Suggested Edits review queue could be better, and I see a number of edits that make questionable changes or that fail to make clearly reasonable changes (for example, edits that fix the capitalization in one half of a post but not the other). However, the opposite extreme is always possible. Editors should improve posts as well as possible and justify their changes as clearly as possible, but it is often good to edit a post even if it cannot be made perfect, and the edit rather than its accompanying summary is what makes the biggest difference.

However, although I think none of those disadvantages could be avoided, each could be made more or less severe by the specifics of what change were made to the system. It might well be justified to make the system a little more complicated, in a way that can be clearly documented and easily understood, and to make editors slightly more preoccupied with how long it may take them to gain the ability to edit directly, in order to make it more efficient for people who enjoy and are good at editing to make the site better.

But that would be a somewhat different proposal than simply conferring editing privileges based on some number of accepted edits, without looking at the number of rejected edits.

1The reasons I think edit suggestions should never cause a loss of rep is are: (a) The rep wouldn't be recouped by good edits made after the editing privilege was attained. This would feel unfair, and low-rep users wouldn't get enough practice making the kinds of edits they would then go on to make, so once they gained editing privileges, their edits would often be bad. (b) For answers, a downvote is -2 and an upvote is +10, so the system still encourages answers from users who aren't sure how their contributions will be judged. Even so, people on Ask Ubuntu tend not to downvote very often. If suggesting an edit could cause rep loss, new users would be overly reluctant to edit, and reviewers would be overly reluctant to reject edits, which would result in a smaller number of edits actually getting made, many of which would be bad.

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