I have just had a flag rejected. The 'answer' I flagged as 'not an answer' was 'Yes, it has to be rote. Thank you' I deduced that this was the OP under a different name. How do I go about discussing this with the moderator involved?

  • 1
    Link to answer english.stackexchange.com/questions/424657/…
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jan 2, 2018 at 17:32
  • @Mari-Lou A Thank you. I was trying to preserve OP's anonymity (though their [balance of probabilities] two names may well be false anyway). Jan 2, 2018 at 17:39
  • I'm not sure what you're getting at here. Apparently, you and two other users collectively deleted the "comment as answer" post, whereas I settled for just voting to close the question itself. But isn't that just what higher-rep users are supposed to do? I thought the general idea was that whenever it's possible for us to "police" the site without mod intervention, that should always be the preferred approach. I'm assuming you were in no doubt that the "comment as answer" should be deleted, and that you were seeking mod intervention to do just that, not to "discuss" the issue itself. Jan 2, 2018 at 18:24
  • @FF My interpretation was that it was not intended as an answer but as a comeback by OP. I'm reading 'posted as an answer' to mean 'posted and intended as an answer' rather than 'posted in ELU "answer" format', and this leaves me without a correct close-vote reason. Possibly clarification is needed, or a separate CV reason. Jan 3, 2018 at 0:40
  • In my view, your impulse to remove the non-answer was blameless and public spirited. I would have flagged the moderators, too—although I might have chosen the customized reason option and noted that the post was probably intended as a thank-you comment by the poster under a second user name. Then it would be up to the mods to delete the non-answer or to convert it into a comment. But I sympathize with your reaction to having a flag rejected: it always feels peremptory and dismissive, no matter how rarely it happens—a fault, I think, of SE's flagging system and not of the mods themselves.
    – Sven Yargs
    Jan 3, 2018 at 1:50
  • @EdwinAshworth I have a Very Low Quality flag declined for the same answer. Beats me. I have grown used to the fact that moderators are people too, and that they may not always agree with my reasoning. I'm kind of used to getting some declined every now and then. It's not consistent. The results of my flags depend on the particular moderator's own views on the matter.
    – NVZ Mod
    Jan 3, 2018 at 6:21
  • @Sven Yargs 'I might have chosen the customized reason option and noted that the post was probably intended as a thank-you comment by the poster under a second user name.' ... Thanks for the prompt; on second thoughts, that was exactly what I did do. My above comment was an erroneous deduction. One needs histories of these things to be available. // There seem to be moderators and moderators. Jan 3, 2018 at 11:05
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    @EdwinAshworth There is a history available. According to it, your flag was an NAA.
    – MetaEd
    Jan 3, 2018 at 16:07
  • @MetaEd Assuming you handled the flags, I wonder why my flag as VLQ was declined for that one-liner. Your thoughts?
    – NVZ Mod
    Jan 4, 2018 at 6:32
  • @NVZ I've posted a new answer so it can be peer reviewed. See below.
    – MetaEd
    Jan 4, 2018 at 18:29

2 Answers 2


We often see new users who get confused and end up with multiple profiles. If that's the case here, and if there's no sign of foul play (such as cross voting), we'll help with merging them together.

  • Thank you for responding. 'Yes, it has to be rote' is at best an answer needing deletion. But the 'Thank you' surely indicates that this is an acknowledgement by the OP. I'm not happy about the flag rejection. On a political rather than personal level. Jan 3, 2018 at 0:29

So my answer to NVZ’s clarifying question in the comment trail can be voted on separately, I'm posting it separately:

@MetaEd Assuming you handled the flags, I wonder why my flag as VLQ was declined for that one-liner. Your thoughts?

VLQ flags are for posts which are an “indecipherable mess”. VLQ flags may be declined when the post is comprehensible and arguably contains at least a partial answer. For a good discussion of the limits of VLQ, see the following answer, and other answers about VLQ on SE Meta:

The limits to a Very Low Quality answer – SE Meta

The rationale is that good VLQ flags should result in deletion. But we don't want to delete answers which are answers, just less than useful (or even harmful). We want them to be peer reviewed. Downvoted answers are way more helpful to future users than deleted answers. As the old saw goes,

Nobody is completely useless; s/he can always serve as a bad example.

In the case of the one-liner answer to the linked question, it was a comprehensible answer (and even, arguably, correct, so far as it went). That would be plenty of reason to invalidate a VLQ flag.

  • 1
    I see. Nice answer. In my defence, I didn't at the time think of it as an answer at all. It was a response to the actual answer provided by FF, albeit in the comments under the question. So, it should either be posted as a response comment to the answer-in-comment (but OP made a new account, unfortunately), or written like a proper answer, which they didn't. So, naturally, I and two other senior ELUers voted to delete it. But I get the point you mention. The linked MSE has my upvote from months ago, apparently. But I welcome the reminder. :)
    – NVZ Mod
    Jan 4, 2018 at 18:45

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