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I noticed that for new users they cannot upvote answers until they reach a minimum of 15 reputation points.

I certainly see the idea that non-trusted upvotes could degrade the quality of the site....

...but on the other hand it prevents new users from recognizing good answers to their first (or first few) questions. Is this really how we want to first present ourselves to new users?

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    They can still accept an answer – Double AA Jan 20 '16 at 14:42
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    If their question is decent it'll get 3 votes. – Double AA Jan 20 '16 at 14:42
  • We care about being welcoming to new users, to help build community, to continue generating and maintaining high-quality Q&A. We care even more about the generation and maintenance of high-quality Q&A itself, and editorial feedback is an important component of that job. – Isaac Moses Jan 20 '16 at 14:50
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In my opinion, the main benefit of having the 15 reputation threshold is to prevent sockpuppetry. With no threshold, any user could easily create multiple new accounts and upvote all of his own (or someone else's) posts. 15 reputation points isn't much of a burden; it simply forces any new user to make at least one quality contribution to the site before gaining voting privileges. If the person's question is good, he should receive a few upvotes on his own post which will unlock his voting privilege.

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  • What about voting on answers to their own questions? Wouldn't that evade these issues? – Y     e     z Jan 21 '16 at 2:20
  • @yEz Perhaps. But as DoubleAA said in the comments on the question, the OP can accept an answer regardless of reputation. Like I said in the answer, 15 rep points isn't a huge barrier. It just requires that the person put in a small bit of effort before gaining this moderation privilege. – Daniel Jan 21 '16 at 2:29
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    Yes, but that limits him to only thank one answerer, even if he gets three or four helpful responses. – Y     e     z Jan 21 '16 at 2:31

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