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I had ten upvotes on an answer I posted to a good question, and then the question got migrated to a site that I am not a user on. I find this rather disheartening. Why can't I keep my rep here if I am not a user on the other site? (Prompted by Nick Alexeev in response to a comment I made on another question)

I am expecting to get ripped apart for asking, so rip away.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Rep is intended to show not just your level of engagement in the network, but also act as a proxy for your skill level in a particular subject area. The language specific sites would be a clear example of where expertise is not necessaily comparable. \$\endgroup\$ – Sean Houlihane Jan 26 '17 at 16:45
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That's how the system works. The question and any answers effectively no longer exist on this site.

Your answer migrated with the question, and if you go ahead and create a linked account, you'll get credit for the reputation there.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Okey Dokey. I guess the solution is basically to create an account on every site. I always wondered why we didn't just have one BIG site of everything, but I guess that is another question. \$\endgroup\$ – user56384 Jan 25 '17 at 17:17
  • \$\begingroup\$ FYI, upon creating that linked account, you also earn a +100 "association bonus" since you already have more than 200 rep points on at least one of the sites. stackoverflow.blog/2009/07/cross-site-account-associations You've already proven yourself trustworthy on at least one site, so you instantly get enough rep points on the next site to be able to comment everywhere and use chat. \$\endgroup\$ – MarkU Jan 26 '17 at 5:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you @MarkU, I found that I was basically ONLY "commenting everywhere and (sometimes) using chat", so I killed off most of my profiles on sites I was not truly interested in. This spares everyone from my pointless comments and keeps me from wandering off my path. Really, I am just looking for a place that intelligent people hang out to discuss things, but I have not found it yet. Even on SE, people are awfully 'concrete' in their thinking sometimes. \$\endgroup\$ – user56384 Jan 26 '17 at 17:11
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    \$\begingroup\$ I noticed that. SE is not a discussion/hangout/make friends site, it's a Q&A site, and extended discussion tends to be contrary to the purpose. There are lots of forums for discussion. People can be "concrete" because that's the voice you use when writing answers. If your answer is "gee, I wonder I think maybe", that's not very believable. \$\endgroup\$ – Harper Feb 2 '17 at 8:06
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Presumably, the question you answered was off-topic at this site, otherwise it wouldn't (or shouldn't) have been migrated away. At least, that's what the FAQ on migration says:

Don't migrate for the sake of migration. We only migrate questions because they are off-topic on the original site. It is perfectly possible for a question to be on-topic on multiple sites, but that is not a reason to migrate it elsewhere. As a general rule, if someone asks a question here, and it's on-topic here, it should stay here.

Normally, off-topic questions are closed and eventually deleted, along with their answers. However, since the question you answered was on-topic at another SE site, it was migrated there instead. Your rep for the answer that you managed to post before the migration went along with it — if you wish to reclaim it, you can sign up for an account at the other site.

As Dave Tweed notes, this is how it's meant to work: you rep on any given site is meant to reflect your on-topic contributions to that site.

To illustrate why that's how it should be, let me give a hypothetical example. I know quite a bit about programming, and currently have 32k rep on Stack Overflow. On the other hand, I know essentially nothing about Buddhism, and I don't even have an account on Buddhism Stack Exchange (even though I do have quite a few accounts on various SE sites that I've never used for anything other than flagging spam).

Now, suppose some confused user happened to ask a programming question on Buddhism.SE, and I just happened to notice it, and registered an account and answered it there before it was (closed or) migrated to SO where it belongs to. (We all know that some SO users are clueless, and will ask programming questions on any site that even vaguely looks like SO.) Let's also assume that, if nothing else, the OP managed to accept and maybe even upvote my answer on Buddhism.SE before their question was migrated, so that I gained some rep from it. In that hypothetical scenario, should I really get to keep any rep points on Buddhism.SE that I might have earned from that answer, even though it had nothing to do with Buddhism?

Of course, your actual case was (presumably) not quite so clear-cut, since you say that your answer had 10 upvotes when it was migrated, suggesting that at least some other users thought that it was both good and on-topic here. (It's also possible, of course, that the upvoters were visitors from other SE sites via Hot Network Questions, and therefore not so familiar with what's on-topic here, or that they simply upvoted your answer because it was good even though it was also off-topic, with the expectation that it would eventually be migrated to a more appropriate site.) But in any case, the basic principle holds: if the question does not belong on this site, then neither do the answers, or the rep earned from them.

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