As you can see in my reputation graph, my reputation points on this site tend to stay pretty much the same for some days, then shoot up for a short while and then calm down again.

This is not because of my behavior: I was recently gone for a week, but other than that I've looked at reviews (since I can, mainly Mo-Fr) and I'm subscribed to two tags and answer most questions there.

But still my reputation has a wave-like pattern, first the interval was about 2 weeks, then there was a longer pause and then a boost about 10 days long. I neither see this pattern at other users, nor on other sites.

What could cause it? Just random chance?

  • 7
    The graph seems to correspond fairly well to your new posts. I'm not sure what explanation you want other than "people gave your posts upvotes in the spots where the line is going up, and did not when the line was flat"
    – Unionhawk Mod
    Aug 29, 2017 at 15:46
  • Well, in that case the question is: Why do questions get asked in a pattern like that? I'm following the tags "minecraft" and "minecraft-commands" and look at the "new user" and "late answer" reviews. Aug 29, 2017 at 17:08
  • stackexchange.com/users/9054344/jmac?tab=reputation AFAIK that's always the way it goes. All it takes is one really popular question to boost your stats quite a bit (like that huge upwards spike for me on physics was because I answered a "Hot Network Question" in a really accessible way). Less popular answers barely effect the graph, especially as your rep goes up.
    – JMac
    Aug 29, 2017 at 18:12
  • My most popular answer has only 5 upvotes. You're right, your graphs look similar. But I've seen a lot of graphs of which most don't look like this. Aug 29, 2017 at 18:28
  • Update almost a year later: The stair pattern in the beginning is still clearly visible on my reputation graph. There was definitely something going on there. But not it has smoothed out a bit after that. Jul 20, 2018 at 12:29

2 Answers 2


It's a mix of random chance and when you post your answers. Take a look at your list of answered questions sorted by date and take note that on days where you answered several questions and got several upvotes in a row, your reputation goes up. For example, your first big bump was around July 10th of this year. Around that time, you answered 4 questions, all of which were accepted (+60 rep) and some which had a good number of upvotes. Then there's a lull where you answer some questions but don't get upvotes... that happens too, and it's perfectly normal.

Whether your answer gets any upvotes is semi-random. Obviously you have a much better chance if your answer is well-written and researched, but your chance is decreased if it's for an unpopular or poor question. There's other "meta" factors as well - time of day, current popularity of the game in question, number of views, etc... So in a way it's "random" when you get your votes. But the in the end...

Just focus on writing quality answers and the rep will come eventually. :)

  • The frequency of questions also varies a lot. But thanks, I can see now that there are a lot of different factors that can influence it. I'll watch my graph in the future and see if the pattern continues. Aug 29, 2017 at 20:15

Almost all of your answers are related to Minecraft. I suspect that you will have to correlate articles from popular games publications on Minecraft programming, and cross reference when those came out with the periods of frequent rep increase you're seeing.

i.e. if gamespot.com or PC Gamer etc. runs an article on Minecraft, and people search for additional info or get interested and have related questions on it -> they search online, run across your posts and sometimes upvote the helpful ones. During times when there is no news in the media, interest dies down and you don't get much upvotes.

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