Yes or no? I would argue that most of the time, one should vote up the question if you're answering it. I'd like to see more people taking the half-a-second to upvote a question, after they've clearly spent tens or hundreds or times as long answering the question. Once you've answered a question, you've presumably also spent the time understanding and measuring the validity of the question, so I would have thought this would tend to encourage an upvote.

There is also an element of self-interest, if you're interested in scoring reputation points. Voting up questions apparently adds to "hotness", and if questions are listed by votes, and there are more of them, your answer is likely to be seen and up-voted as well.

Here's a relevant discussion (I'm sure there are others), from meta.stackoverflow: Why Aren't People Voting for Questions?

2 Answers 2


I typically upvote if:

  • it's a good question
  • the person has added detail that someone else can answer it, even if I can't, because a good question is a contribution to the site.
  • I pretty much assume whatever Jorge Castro does is the correct way to do things, so I'm glad you put in your view. [This is actually what I tend to do as well (though I up-vote things I answer >90% of the time, I think).]
    – belacqua
    Commented Oct 28, 2011 at 0:23

I'm a bit more stingy with my votes on questions. I'll vote for something if:

  • It's a genuinely good and interesting question.
  • I think it deserves more attention.
  • I think people have unfairly voted against it.

But I wouldn't vote for something just because I understood it well enough to answer it. Mediocre questions can often be answered too.

  • Mediocre questions usually get mediocre answers, but yes, if you're someone who gives good answers to mediocre questions (through telepathy, stubbornness, Ubuntu-love, point-whoring, boundless altruism, etc.), I take your point. That's definitely reasonable.
    – belacqua
    Commented Oct 28, 2011 at 0:21
  • I don't just mean the physical quality, answerability, etc, I mean subject matter too. I vote for questions that interest me. I don't think it would be right that everybody just vote for questions that are technically adept (though that's their choice).
    – Oli Mod
    Commented Oct 28, 2011 at 3:18

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