I had a flag declined as: "flags should only be used to make moderators aware of content that requires their intervention".

The flag that was used was "Low Quality". If these are going to be declined, I suggest we remove "Low Quality" as a flag reason.

  • It might help if you would post the question or answer that you have flagged. Commented Feb 9, 2012 at 16:09
  • @OctavianDamiean there's several flags in the past-30-days flags queue I have which match "Low Quality" and "Declined - [see above reason]" as the response. Since that seems to be the general response to these flags, I am not seeking additional info about why it was declined as such, but rather the removal fo that type of flag outright.
    – Thomas Ward Mod
    Commented Feb 9, 2012 at 16:17
  • 1
    This question might be related. Is the “very low quality” flag necessary? Commented Feb 9, 2012 at 16:28
  • Also related: meta.askubuntu.com/q/1948/18612 Commented Feb 10, 2012 at 1:52

3 Answers 3


I tend to disagree with these flags when I see them in the queue. I think people use them as a way to downvote without spending rep. (Which on questions makes no sense to me since those are free downvotes).

But whatever. :)

  • 3
    Hence why I suggest the removal of it as a reason.
    – Thomas Ward Mod
    Commented Feb 9, 2012 at 16:09
  • From my experience, I frequently decline those flags as well. Nearly all of the posts flagged "low quality" can be rescued reasonably well by editing - and often with just a little bit of it. That said, they don't come in as often as you'd think - compared to "not an answer" for instance. Commented Feb 9, 2012 at 18:14

(Very low quality)

This answer has severe formatting or content problems. This answer is unlikely to be salvageable through editing, and might need to be removed.

There is a big miss understanding about this flag and about down voting here.

The "low quality flag" is useful and should not be removed from the options available. What users do not understand is where to apply it most of the times.

The low quality flag should be applied when ever a post has reasonable amounts of confusion, spelling and grammar or simply the simple contents of it cannot be rescued without having to spend huge amounts of time investigating any information is supplies, (ie for the last case: url answers and one line solutions that don't really explain how would that be a solution).

Normally what we see in the queue are answers flagged as low quality that are not the solution for the issue and people that do not agree with what is being said. But the post is an answer, it has information up to a certain point.

Those most of the times are not bad quality answers and the only reason they where flagged in the first place is that someone doesn't agree with them. That is not what flag is for, that is what down votes are for.

If an answer is a comment, a request for further help, added information that should be somewhere else or just something that cannot answer the question flag it as not an answer.

If you disagree with an answer, think it is not the correct one, would rather not see it there because of the path taken to help the user (dangerous instructions, etc) down vote it! Do not mark it as low quality!

If an answer is confusing, has severe formatting issues, you think no one would figure out what was being said there or its just an URL that does not specify the information linked you can flag the post as low quality and down vote it if you wish.

Down voting should always come first before a low quality flag, posts that are down voted enough will eventually be deleted and unless they cannot be rescued of fit the reasons above the flags do not need to be approved / declined.

  • I totally agree with most of what you said, the only exception is flagging answers that are just a link as low quality. On Stack Overflow they get flagged as not an answer. Commented Feb 20, 2012 at 12:32

I think the most common problematic questions are from well intended but inexpert users who are either hitting a bug, or who have given only a vague description of their problem. Pace Jorge, I think it is better to flag these questions rather than downvoting them.

  • Downvoting (especially to a negative number) seems harsh; it's better that the question either be edited or closed
  • Ideally these questions would disappear or at least be clearly closed, rather than just low scored.

I guess to me moderation is for "wrong" vs scoring being "not interesting".

  • We are talking about the very low quality flag which is just for answers, not for questions. ;) Commented Feb 20, 2012 at 12:39
  • The question doesn't say that... but, I see that flag isn't offered when you flag a question.
    – poolie
    Commented Feb 20, 2012 at 21:16

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