I have only tried answering questions here for a few days. But I am troubled by the mechanics of the site. So far I've answered 36 questions. Of those 2 were accepted as the correct answer, 7 have received up-votes but were not accepted as the correct answer, 23 have received no votes and 4 have received down votes.
First of all, why have the vast majority received no votes? In most cases they are the only answer to a question. The person posting the original question never returned to mark it as the correct answer, and no one else returned to the question to up-vote my answer.
Second, why would any of my answers receive a down-vote? I am a DBA with 17 years of experience, and I only answer questions where I know the exact correct answer. And yet four of my answers have been down-voted with either no comments, or no comments that imply it is a bad answer. I read over the down-voted answers and in every case it was the correct answer, just like all the rest.
Third, why is no one able to satisfactorily answer the questions I've asked? I've asked 3 so far. Two received no responses. The one that received answers didn't receive any until I put a bounty on it. Further, neither of the answers is correct, yet each received 2 up-votes.
The reputation scoring system seems like a great way to get people to answer questions, yet it seems fundamentally broken in practice. There is no-incentive for people on the site to up-vote and accept correct answers. And apparently a 50 bounty is not enough to get decent answers to complex questions, and I can't figure out how to raise the bounty to 100.
Is there any way to fix this?
Update. Aha, I've found a perfect example for this http://dba.stackexchange.com/questions/5222/why-shouldnt-we-allow-nullsWhy shouldn't we allow NULLs?
My answer is factually accurate, complete, concise, objective, born out by real world data, and includes sample code to show people how to find columns in their current data model that allow NULLs but do not have any actual NULLs. And yet it sits at -7.