It’s not that I am upset, or angry. I am just curious to know that where my answer went wrong. I answered someone’s question, he asked for further clarification, I clarified his doubt in the comments section, and he marked my answer as the accepted one. A few hours laters, my answer had a downvote and was no longer the accepted one (no problem with that though).

Link to the answer: https://ell.stackexchange.com/a/272954/122691

  • 3
    I am not the person that down-voted, but I think it is the mention of a "wheelchair" that might have done it. The question says A man sits in a chair at a Club. which is barely any context, but enough to maybe rule out that he was in a wheelchair. Even though you did say "or a chair with wheels", some people may react negatively to one thing being "off".
    – ColleenV
    Jan 22, 2021 at 16:27
  • Also, there is an FAQ on Meta: I've just been downvoted. How should I react? that has a lot of good advice.
    – ColleenV
    Jan 22, 2021 at 16:46
  • 1
    In this instance, it is pointless trying to figure out why this answer got downvoted. It's correct. It's well explained, and you did say it could be any chair with wheels. But Michael's answer is more complete, as a side issue, Italians do not put castors (small wheels) on home furniture, tables or on beds. It must be an anglo thing.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jan 22, 2021 at 19:45
  • @Mari-LouA Thank you for appreciating :-), and yes, Michael’s answer was indeed more complete. Jan 22, 2021 at 20:52
  • 2
    Downvotes are anonymous. If you think your answer was correct then you shouldn't be worried about downvotes. See this answer of mine; it's my only answer that has an overall negative score, but it is correct and I share its link to every other answer about 'syncope'. I recently shared its link to another answer. (Honestly, I'm quite happy about the downvote because it makes it easier to search. :P)
    – Void
    Jan 22, 2021 at 20:58
  • @Void Should I take the opportunity to remove that negative score off your account forever? ;-D (I liked the answer though) Jan 22, 2021 at 21:38
  • Everything after the semicolon is supposition, and everything before it is the only thing on the entire page that I can agree with: "It means he moved his chair" (it does not mean it has wheels on it. Imaginary DVs for everyone ;)
    – Mazura
    Jan 23, 2021 at 4:19
  • @Mari-LouA - "ALFER & C SRL Legal office: Via Castagnini, 25 40012 Calderara di Reno (Bo) Italy" "We are an Italian company that has been producing wheels and castors for institutional use for more than 40 years." Mar 29, 2022 at 8:24
  • @MichaelHarvey It is very uncommon for home furnitue in italian homes to have castors. "Institutional use" mentioned by the Italian company's intro suggests nursing homes, hospitals, and the like.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Mar 29, 2022 at 9:38
  • @Mari-LouA - yes, and the OP's question is about a 'club', which is a kind of instititution. Mar 29, 2022 at 9:46
  • I don't know of any men-only membership clubs, as the one described in the piece of literature, in the part of Italy where I live. The clubs that I know of do not have leather bound armchairs, heavy chesterfields and the like, which were often found in British men clubs in the past. Instead, Italian clubs will have plain desks, and chairs which are easy to stack and extremely light to move around. But if you don't want to believe me it is your problem not mine.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Mar 29, 2022 at 10:21

1 Answer 1


As you know when people downvote they are not obliged to offer a comment to explain why. This topic has been extensively discuss over on Meta Encouraging people to explain downvotes and there is no chance that will change. This means that we can only guess as to why someone downvoted your answer. I cannot personally see any thing that stands out as demanding a downvote. I guess we will never know.

It might have been better if the OP had waited a while before accepting an answer in case something better came along. It is rather awkward if they change their mind and have to unaccept but it happens. There is no guarantee that the accepted answer is any better than any of the others, I have certainly seen cases where it was not. In this case though I think that on the balance of probabilities the current accepted answer is the correct one given the context of a club in the first decades of the last century.

  • 4
    RE: It might have been better if the OP had waited a while before accepting an answer in case something better came along. Absolutely agree that's case here. Moreover, some folks may be more inclined to downvote a hastily-accepted answer that isn't necessarily a great answer, especially on a learner's forum) – in part to signal the OP, "Hey, this isn't necessarily the stellar answer that you seemed to think it is."
    – J.R. Mod
    Jan 23, 2021 at 13:44
  • Also, once you've voted, you can't 'undo' your vote - only change it. So, if you commit to downvoting something and want to undo that, you must instead upvote. Perhaps the OP upvoted when they accepted your answer, and in undoing the acceptance they also reversed their vote? There is no returning to a neutral position, which is a shame because it's quite clear when you compare the disparity between the number of views and the number of votes a post gets that people are only inclined to vote if something is of special interest to them, and a 'neutral' position is the most popular.
    – Astralbee
    May 25, 2021 at 13:58

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