It would be helpful if tchrist had added a comment as to why it was deleted.

According to https://english.stackexchange.com/help/deleted-answers

Answers that do not fundamentally answer the question may be removed. This includes answers that are:

  1. commentary on the question or other answers
  2. asking another, different question
  3. “thanks!” or “me too!” responses
  4. exact duplicates of other answers
  5. barely more than a link to an external site
  6. not even a partial answer to the actual question

My answer:

  1. Isn't.
  2. Doesn't.
  3. Isn't.
  4. Isn't.
  5. Not.
  6. Is a full answer.

As far as using abusive language...


Always be polite and have fun

Who was I rude to?

It’s fine to disagree and express concern, but please be civil.

I wasn't disagreeing or arguing with anyone.


This might trigger it, but still, I didn't aim it at any person or group of people.

  • 6
    Because you used abusive language to no useful end. That this is not obvious enough to you that you need to ask for explicit rationale is perhaps part of the problem. Maybe it would help if you would edit your Meta-question here to show us how you believe your answer meets 9 qualifications in the help center. Clearly there’s a big disconnect somewhere.
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Jan 1, 2018 at 18:53
  • 1
    I've downvoted this meta question because I think OP is being (deliberately or unwittingly) obtuse in failing to recognise that just because his example containing "potentially offensive" language wasn't directed at anyone in particular, doesn't mean no-one should be offended by it. The state of being offended is a personal matter, and it's misguided to imply that just because someone didn't mean to offend you, you have no right to feel offended. If I arbitrarily included a string of taboo 4-letter words here I'm sure my comment would raise eyebrows (and very likely, moderator flags). Commented Jan 2, 2018 at 15:23
  • @FumbleFingers the purpose of this meta question was to "unobtusify" me.
    – RonJohn
    Commented Jan 2, 2018 at 15:54
  • RonJohn: Fair enough. I hope you weren't offended by my comment though - I didn't explicitly make the point above, but I certainly don't object to the fact of you asking the question here on meta. Personally, I'm not normally one take offence at "gratuitous use of colourful language" (either on my own account, or on behalf of others with more delicate sensibilities), but I think it behoves us all to at least be aware of situations where someone might be offended, and seek to avoid creating such situations (not that I always practice what I'm preaching, to be honest! :) Commented Jan 2, 2018 at 17:36
  • @FumbleFingers Since you down-voted, and claimed "I think OP is being ... obtuse", I don't understand how you can then say, "I certainly don't object to the fact of you asking the question here on meta." It seems very contradictory.
    – RonJohn
    Commented Jan 2, 2018 at 18:00
  • I don't know exactly how to explain myself (that's why I didn't even try on the first comment). What I'm getting at is I think it's a good idea that such points regarding site etiquette should be clarified in meta questions, but I disagree with your implied position that people "shouldn't" take offence at the use of coarse language unless it is directed at them ("in anger", so to speak). Commented Jan 2, 2018 at 18:10
  • @FumbleFingers as a white Gentile, I can take offense at someone else being called "The N-Word" or "kike", even though they aren't aimed at me. And this goes back to my original point: will any reasonable person be offended because I just used "The N-Word" and "kike", even though they are offensive and derogatory?
    – RonJohn
    Commented Jan 2, 2018 at 18:19
  • Well, I'm probably not a "reasonable" person, in that by and large I don't personally give a rat's a#@% if someone sprinkles their speech/writing with coarse turns of phrase. I'm more likely to be irritated (not exactly offended) by poor grammar / orthography than by profanity. But to repeat my point - if someone does feel offended, that's just a fact. It's pretty irrelevant whether other people think their reaction is "reasonable" or not. Commented Jan 2, 2018 at 18:53
  • @RonJohn You clearly are insensitive to the fact that your words (on this site) are being read by up to thousands of people, and a certain number of those people would prefer to concentrate on lingustics and language in its purest and most intelligent form, rather than what is offered at the other end of the spectrum.
    – Nigel J
    Commented Jan 8, 2018 at 13:51

2 Answers 2


I deleted your post because our community here had flagged it, including as being rude or offensive. It read like this:

I use it as both "Original Post" and "Original Poster", depending on what I need at the time.

  • "OP is an idiot who can't find his arse with both hands, a flashlight and a map!"
  • "What you wrote is true, but does has nothing to do with the OP."

I judged community’s point was a valid one. The language used there was hardly the language of respectful civil discourse in keeping with our Be Nice policy.

Nevertheless I didn’t find the language so bad as to merit the various kinds of automatic penalties which the system would have imposed on you if a sufficient number of similar flags had eventually shown up.

So rather than let those flags build up to the point of locked deletion, which has quite a few unpleasant but completely automatic side-effects, I intervened to manually delete it to spare you those.

That cleared all pending flags without those triggering a massive hit on your reputation, locking the post and hiding its contents, or blocking you from answering.

  • Were there lots of flags?
    – RonJohn
    Commented Jan 1, 2018 at 19:07
  • @RonJohn No, not really “a lot” exactly, but it was enough to pull your post up towards the top not the bottom of the flag dashboard moderators use to look at the flag queue. That weighting is based on several factors, including the number and types of flags and the respective flagging histories of the flaggers. This lets us order flags so that the ones likely to stir up unrest on the site rank higher than those of lesser concern.
    – tchrist Mod
    Commented Jan 1, 2018 at 19:10
  • A massive hit on reputation? The maximum number of spam/abuse flags per post is six, isn't it? Then the system kicks in and automatically deletes the post. I'm not defending the OP's answer, just wondering how this lock/deletion system works. I always believed the only mods could lock posts.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Jan 1, 2018 at 21:21
  • 3
    @Mari-LouA If there are three total flags that are either spam or offensive, then Community locks and deletes. If a mod approves such a flag (or files their own, which self-approve), –100 is applied to the rep. There may also be other measures applied by the system making it harder to post, and the strength of these may vary according to other metrics.
    – tchrist Mod
    Commented Jan 1, 2018 at 21:33

Maybe your answer didn't meet the "be nice", the "be polite", and the "be grammatically correct" criteria.

For users with less than 10K who cannot see deleted posts

I use it as both "Original Post" and "Original Poster", depending on what I need at the time.

  • "OP is an idiot who can't find his arse with both hands, a flashlight and a map!"
  • "What you wrote is true, but does has nothing to do with the OP."

OR more likely, some (many?) users objected to the gratuitous use of colorful language in the answer and flagged it to the mods' attention.

Looking at the answer more attentively, I see it also attracted 4 downvotes and some upvoted comments that felt uncomfortable with the OP's example of usage

  • 3 Why the rude example? I realize it's in jest and not directed towards any real person, but still @________

  • 2 @________ because it's a real-life example of using OP as "Original Poster". – RonJohn yesterday

  • 2 @RonJohn Fair enough, although I'm sure it's also possible to find a non-rude example @_______

  • 1
    I was nice and polite (didn't insult or be mean to anyone), and don't see any grammatical mistakes (ok, I left a word in from rearranging before posting the answer; that could be edited out by someone helpful). Is there a rule against "colorful" language in context of an answer? If that were the case, a warning of impending deletion would have been really helpful.
    – RonJohn
    Commented Jan 1, 2018 at 18:49
  • 3
    @RonJohn I don't think calling an OP an idiot is very polite, I don't think the word arse is either polite or nice or necessary.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Jan 1, 2018 at 18:50
  • I didn't call anyone an idiot. This was a generalize example of using OP as "Original Poster".
    – RonJohn
    Commented Jan 1, 2018 at 18:52
  • 7
    @RonJohn Is calling anyone, real or hypothetical, an idiot, an example of polite language?
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Jan 1, 2018 at 18:53
  • 3
    I am trying to figure out how a flashlight would be helpful without a mirror. Don't answer that.
    – ab2
    Commented Jan 1, 2018 at 23:46
  • DVed ha! For an answer that was posted before tchrist's. Takes all sorts.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Jan 2, 2018 at 17:29
  • 1
    @Mari-LouA Somebody lost their keys again. Today I learned a new expression, thanks to you - "It takes all sorts". :)
    – NVZ Mod
    Commented Jan 4, 2018 at 7:08
  • 1
    @ab2 it's so you can see the map better.
    – Hellion
    Commented Jan 4, 2018 at 18:44

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