Complex answers, no matter how useful, generally seem to attract few votes. Simpler replies take less effort and less skill to understand and will likely get more votes.
In general, the relation seems to be:
- Negative rep:
- You did something wrong.
- Rep around 0:
- Usually a "nothing special" note. Occasionally, Warnock's dilemma applies.
- Low to medium positive rep:
- You didn't do anything wrong. No other useful information here.
- High rep:
- Good work.
Where "low to medium positive" tends to be the range from 5 to about 25. Negative rep is -3 or less. But these are no absolutes either.
Makeshifts last the longest.