A few hours back, I flagged a comment on this post as "not constructive".

The comment, if I remember rightly, was:

"Elementary, my dear Watson"

As amusing and not (entirely) out of context as it was, I still believed it shouldn't have been there. So I flagged it.

I just logged back on right now, to discover that my flag had been declined.enter image description here

I tried going back to the post to re-read the comment, but it was no longer there. Deleted, apparently, by a Moderator.

What I'd like to know,

1)Why was my flag was declined, even though action was clearly taken against the comment?

2) Is this some new policy? Should I stop flagging amusing comments as 'non-constructive'?


1 Answer 1


In this case, it's my fault, as I misclicked. The comment flag dialog is slightly confusing to me, as "dismiss" and "delete" both have the same negative connotation to me (respectively, they mean "dismiss flag" and "delete comment"). It's actually not the first time it happened (MAR spotted one other instance), but I'll try to watch out and double-check what I'm clicking. Sorry.

For comment flags, I am not particularly fond of the not constructive option, as it is not clear-cut when to use it. NC can be construed as a lot of things. Generally for jokes I lean towards too chatty, and I save NC for stuff that actively misleads people/detracts from the topic. However, everyone has their own take on the matter, and I think your flag was OK, especially if we take a broader interpretation of NC.

Related: When should comments be flagged as "not constructive"? on meta.SE

A newer proposal to streamline the options for flagging comments: Drop "not constructive", combine "noisy", reword "rude" and "other" comment flags

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    $\begingroup$ So it was you who erased my comment. I don't mind. It was meant to be disposable. $\endgroup$ Jun 2, 2017 at 20:15
  • $\begingroup$ Usually we don't mind leaving harmless comments up for a while (like a day or so), but it got flagged, so I kind of had to do something. Link to the last time this was discussed Thanks for understanding, though. $\endgroup$ Jun 2, 2017 at 20:28

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