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Sometimes new users do not get the difference between an answer and a comment. Also there is a reputation gap they have to reach, so it is possible that someone wants to post a comment and post instead an answer...

So there is e.g. this really ugly "question" and kmangold was posting an answer, I think because of the comment limitation he did not reach yet.

In my understanding of this site it should be a comment and not an answer. Now I want to "flag" this or "move" it to be a comment, but I do not know if this is possible, or how much reputation I need for this feature.

Because of this question long time ago and the tag I think there is such a functionality, but:

  • when am I able to use it?
  • till I can use it, is there a way to flag it in a kind so that someone who has the right, can convert it?
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Is there any reason why moderators should have to convert them? If 5 users with sufficient rep deem it an answer that should be a comment, can't we just convert it? I mean, users can already vote to delete, which has the same effect, so why do we even need moderator intervention? –  Ivo Flipse Apr 2 '12 at 17:15
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@IvoFlipse That might make a reasonable feature request, if comment answers left by users with less than 50 reputation were excluded from conversion. –  Robert Harvey Apr 2 '12 at 19:21
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3 Answers

up vote 10 down vote accepted

Just flag it as "Not an Answer". Mods will convert it to a comment if it warrants.

Note, we don't often do this, as we don't want low-rep users to add answers in hope that mods convert them to comments.

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i do not understand your note: isn't it better to keep the answers clear of "comments" which are posted as answers? For my understanding having answers which are not answers are worse than comments of low-rep users? I do not care if it is converted or deleted, but removed out of the answer queue... –  Neysor Apr 2 '12 at 15:41
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@Neysor If they're not converted into comments, they're simply deleted. –  Daniel Fischer Apr 2 '12 at 15:49
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@Neysor: What usually happens is that we go through the "not an answer" part of the flag queue, scan each one, then (if the answer has worth but isn't an answer) convert it to a comment or (if it sucks) delete it. –  Won't Apr 2 '12 at 16:13
    
Mods will convert it to a comment. Yeah sure. I would add to if it warrants another "if" - if mods will be able to correctly pick it from wildly rich set of suggestions given to not-an-answer flag: "should possibly be an edit, a comment, another question, or deleted altogether" (should... what?). –  gnat Apr 2 '12 at 16:48
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@gnat: Not that hard. You just scan each one and act accordingly. If you make a mistake, they'll let you know. Oh, they'll let you know. –  Won't Apr 2 '12 at 17:45
    
@Won't well to me it was kind of the other way around - the only mistake I made was just using not-an-answer flag instead of one that was easier for moderator to comprehend. Not a big deal for a single flag for sure - but believe me it was not too much fun to re-visit / re-flag all the problematic answers when there were a lot of these. Oh did I forgot to mention that "Other" flag with appropriate explanation works like a charm? –  gnat Apr 2 '12 at 19:29
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You can always flag the answer "should be a comment."

However, if the user doesn't already have enough reputation to post a comment, I generally don't convert the answer to a comment. Otherwise, these folks would just continue posting answers that really should be comments for which they haven't yet earned the privilege.

Invariably, such comments, even if they do have potentially useful information, are posted to questions that are two years old.

Worth noting: why do we allow users to post crappy answers, but not comments? Because the site is about answers, not conversation; all of the tools we have to effectively deal with spammy posts (including answer bans) are available on answers, but not comments. By the time a user has earned 50 rep, hopefully they understand where comments are appropriate.

Users can always make comments on their own posts, regardless of reputation.

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thanks for this additional information! –  Neysor Apr 2 '12 at 16:38
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. Now i want to "flag" this or "move" it to be a comment, but i do not know if this is possible

Moderators can move an answer to a comment. If the answer's a blatant comment, just click on Flag -> Not an answer. You can also click on Flag -> Other -> and mention why it's not an answer.

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It is better to flag the answer as not an answer, rather than using a custom reason when there is a specific reason to flag. Giving an explanation of why you think an answer is not an answer is not an information moderators normally need to know. –  kiamlaluno Apr 2 '12 at 17:02
    
uh, yeah, not sure what I was thinking lol. @kiamlaluno –  Sathya Apr 2 '12 at 17:04
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