I've noticed a number of unnecessarily rude responses to questions that I've made. Although there appears to be 'flagging' options for some elements, I am unable to do so.

Is this due to having a low reputation point score? and if so, is there a way to report rude comments and/or have them discussed in the meta section?

  • 8
    I have been following your less than successful ventures with some interest, and noticed that you have accused 4 separate long-time users of either "trolling" (which they were not doing) or "rudeness" ( which they were not). Either you are new to the internet, or you have an extremely thin skin. Might I suggest that you grow a thicker one? The only rudeness I have seen seems to be coming from you. If you devoted half as much time to asking and answering questions on the main site as you do on meta, you might have a more successful career here. Oct 3, 2019 at 10:52
  • When your suggestion for improvement is to "grow a thicker one" there's not much more to say. In terms of my posts on Meta, I'm trying to better understand how the page operates. Isn't meta the appropriate place for such inquiries? Oct 3, 2019 at 11:01
  • 8
    You have posted 7 questions so far on meta, and 2 on the main. You seem to be "bikeshedding". Try participating more on the main to understand the culture here. Oct 3, 2019 at 11:05
  • Also, if you could please point to those instances where you believe I've been rude and why you think that, I will certainly review. Oct 3, 2019 at 11:06
  • In terms of bikeshedfing - I dusagee. I consider it of great importance to understand the dynamics of communities I'm involved with. Oct 3, 2019 at 11:12
  • 2
    @DavidGalea the best way to learn how to use the main site is to use the main site. Ignore comments that incense you, and you will get on better. Remember it's not how often you fall, but how often you get up. Oct 3, 2019 at 19:38

1 Answer 1


You can flag posts at 15 reputation. Flagging comments is not mentioned in the privileges list, so it's either the same or possibly even as low as 1. Or it may come with the "comment everywhere" privilege you get at 50 rep.

If you can flag comments, then it will be via the little grey flag on the left of each comment. The up-arrow is to vote agreement with the comment, rather than add an explicit "Me too". [These used to be "mystery meat", appearing only on mouseover; it looks like that's changed.]

Comment flag

Do note that comments are brief and can be brusque. That's not rudeness. There are some guidelines on flags, which — although they probably need updating after five years — still hold true. Insults are rude and flagworthy, and moderators will deal with those; a criticism which is simply "directly expressed" is a judgement call. Moderators try to be consistent, but we're only human; and some have thicker skins than others.

If you can't flag, then I would suggest comments really aren't worth complaining about. You may find that others flag them (and comments can disappear with a fairly low number of flags) and too many flags raised for any particular user also gets brought to moderators' attention by the system. But the easy answer is just to ignore any you don't like.

  • Thanks for the detail in your response. Rudeness shouldn't be ignored, that's essentially toleration in disguise. As I said to you in another post, SE does seem to be more like 'Question Time' in Politics than an Academic domain. As such, I'm not surprised it does seem like the standard moderator ruling to just put up with it. Oct 3, 2019 at 8:16
  • Are there ever 'elections' over the credibility / merit of moderators? can a moderator have their position removed? and if so, what is the formal process for that to occur? Oct 3, 2019 at 8:19
  • 4
    Yes. The mechanism will be described on Meta.stackexchange.com as it's the same on all sites: you may be able to find material faster than me (it's work time in my timezone). Briefly, elections are held when necessary, and complaints about moderators should be made to SE staff via the "Contact" link in the footer of every page. Moderators can also retire and some of the moderators listed in the elections page no longer have a diamond.
    – Andrew Leach Mod
    Oct 3, 2019 at 8:27

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