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There's been a couple of spam-like or at least extremely low quality 'answers' today - firstly one on What does it mean to have a quick wit? (which has now been deleted) and now one on Finding a word to describe that which is fundamentally real.

Granted,

hi i am piper kimbrel i have a best friend named ella

Isn't actually existing "only to promote a product or service", but it is at best trash and at worst clogging up the user experience for the rest of us and clogging up the servers.

Does this merit a 'spam' flag, or is 'not an answer' good enough? Or is there no difference between them and how they are sorted? It appears to me to be gibberish, and though not actually “fsdguejgkfdlk" would merit spam, but is a 'spam' flag a little too hardcore in this case?

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    Definitely NOT SPAM. – NVZ Apr 11 '17 at 10:23
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According to Stack Exchange Employee animuson ♦,

We've established in past discussions that abuse of the system qualifies under the offensive flag. Posting gibberish that doesn't mean anything is definitely abusing the system.

..

We do have to be careful in situations where it's not as clear what the intent of the user is. Someone mashing their keyboard to get a bunch of random letters into a box is clearly abusing our system and they should be flagged and blocked. Someone who looks like they may have just ended up in the wrong place and have no idea what they're doing... well, flagging them as an abusive user and blocking them outright might be a bit much. If you're absolutely sure they're intentionally trying to be abusive, by all means. Otherwise, you may want to just stick with not an answer. 1

My educated guess is that the following example is definitely abusing the system:

hi i am piper kimbrel i have a best friend named ella

It's also okay to flag them as Not An Answer, or Very Low Quality. But doing so will send the post to the review queues, and will require at least 6 other reviewers to recommend it for deletion. Why waste their time? Flagging it as "rude or abusive" by at least a few users will remove the post automatically (and penalize the poster).

Please note that the example given above is not spam, and it should not be flagged as "spam".

If the post was actually useful, but then if it had some additional irrelevant text or gibberish, instead of flags, please just edit out the useless parts from the post.

Also, do provide guidance to newcomers, as that will greatly reduce any further low quality posts from them.

Your second example is simply Not An Answer. It is not gibberish in my view.

Before we can eat prime rib it has to go through a process.

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    We do have to be careful in situations where it's not as clear what the intent of the user is. Someone mashing their keyboard to get a bunch of random letters into a box is clearly abusing our system and they should be flagged and blocked. Someone who looks like they may have just ended up in the wrong place and have no idea what they're doing... well, flagging them as an abusive user and blocking them outright might be a bit much. If you're absolutely sure they're intentionally trying to be abusive, by all means. Otherwise, you may want to just stick with not an answer. – animuson Apr 11 '17 at 16:35
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The flag that best matches the "hi i am" answer is Not An Answer (NAA). It's not gibberish (LQP), and it's not spam, but it's completely out of place on the site.

  • are NAA flags treated differently to spam flags by the mods (for example lower priority)? – marcellothearcane Apr 10 '17 at 15:33
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    @marcellothearcane Spam flags will give the OP -100 rep if validated. They are in the same mod queue as every other flag. – DavidPostill Apr 10 '17 at 15:38
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    Behind the scenes, as Shog9 points out in a linked comment, LQP and NAA boil down to "recommend delete" but Spam and Abusive boil down to "recommend delete with penalty". – MetaEd Apr 10 '17 at 15:38
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    @DavidPostill trouble is, these are new users with only 1 rep and clearly no incentive to get rep – marcellothearcane Apr 10 '17 at 15:48
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    I usually flag gibberish "fsfwfafga" posts as "rude or abusive", and so far most of them were marked helpful. – NVZ Apr 11 '17 at 6:39
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    Gibberrish posts are abusive just like @NVZ said. According to the FAQ, these posts need to be flagged as rude/abusive and be nuked immediately. You may wanna correct this in your answer. – Ashish Ahuja Apr 11 '17 at 9:59
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    The difference between gibberish which isn't English words and gibberish which consists of English words which have no bearing on the subject at hand is being exaggerated here. – tripleee Apr 11 '17 at 10:02
  • A first timer introducing themselves is not being rude or abusive. They need guidance about where to do that appropriately but they do not need to be penalized. – MetaEd Apr 11 '17 at 14:28
  • @MetaEd Newbies need guidance, and that I agree. But does the -100 penalty really affect 1-rep users? – NVZ Apr 11 '17 at 15:06
  • @NVZ That's not the full extent of the penalty. – MetaEd Apr 11 '17 at 16:54

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