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So I was flagging various answers and noticed that a lot of moderators (10k+ users) have answers which should be comments; I flagged some but quite a few became disputed and rejected. Just now I faced a very funny scenario, I came across this question -

In a C# public method, what does the `int` indicate apart from the type integer?

some of the answers had just a few words without any explanation and should be comments (as per me) so I flagged them; but from my previous experience I had a feeling that there is some problem with flagging answers of Moderators or 10k+ users, so I thought to verify that. I flagged these two answers -

enter image description here

and this was result -

enter image description here

So is it because of number of votes or the person's reputation and how this can be taken care of?

share|improve this question
Short answers can be useful. See Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams. – thirtydot Jun 14 '12 at 13:42
@thirtydot Yes I don't have any problem with short answers, but depends on case to case basis. – akjoshi Jun 14 '12 at 13:50
Why downvotes, Have I done anything wrong in pointing out wrong moderation? – akjoshi Jun 14 '12 at 13:50
A downvote on Meta means that the caster disagrees with you. – Dennis Jun 14 '12 at 13:53
@akjoshi Downvotes on meta mean "I disagree", in this case the downvoters likely think that your flags are invalid and those answers should not be deleted. – Mad Scientist Jun 14 '12 at 13:54
@MadScientist I never said my flags were right, my questions were - is it because of number of votes or the person's reputation and how this can be taken care of?; I could have understood down votes if my question was about my flags! – akjoshi Jun 14 '12 at 13:58
For what it's worth, 10k+ users are not moderators. – Frédéric Hamidi Jun 14 '12 at 14:08
If you don't have any problem with short answers why the heck are you flagging them? – BoltClock's a Unicorn Jun 14 '12 at 14:35
@BoltClock'saUnicorn because they were not very helpful(as some other answers) and moreover they were exact duplicates of other answers - – akjoshi Jun 14 '12 at 14:39
Exact duplicate answers that were posted at around the same time don't need to be flagged either. – BoltClock's a Unicorn Jun 14 '12 at 14:41
@BoltClock'saUnicorn yes I learnt that from this thread and I hope it will be helpful for others too, even Moderators. – akjoshi Jun 14 '12 at 14:43
"is it because of number of votes or the person's reputation and how this can be taken care of?" implies "you are all a bunch of biased, rep-whore loving jerkfaces!" Also, the fact that the question can be so simply answered hints that the question itself is the problem, not the answers. – Won't Jun 14 '12 at 16:26
FWIW - the deleted answer by Blackbear is incomplete and verging on being wrong, all because he/she tried to pull a FGITW, I'd probably have pulled the delete trigger on it. David Hefferman's answer is absolutely a correct answer and if you understand what a type is then it doesn't need to say any more. – Kev Jun 14 '12 at 16:54
up vote 8 down vote accepted

Ignoring the validity of the flags and just looking at your question

So is it because of number of votes or the person's reputation and how this can be taken care of?

Most likely it had nothing to do with the reputation or votes on the post and everything to do with who moderated the individual flags. I'm almost positive the flags were decided upon two different moderators.

I know its annoying and sometimes frustrating that all mods don't act the same. Unfortunately they are people and not robots. Since pretty much every thing they do is a judgement call, they must use their own opinions and rule interpretations when making their decisions. So some results are going to be different and you just have to live with that.

share|improve this answer
+1 for "Unfortunately" :) – AakashM Jun 14 '12 at 16:01
@Some Helpful Commenter : Thanks for focusing on my question rather then taking an easy path; your answer is the most positive one and I appreciate it. – akjoshi Jun 14 '12 at 17:37
fortunately or not, recently mods became more like robots when handling flags - just because their evaluation is now intended to be used by "robot" in review-audits – gnat Jan 17 '13 at 14:35


In a C# public method, what does the int indicate apart from the type integer?


It is the type of the return value.

That does answer the question. Unless you know what a return value is, you might not consider it very helpful, but that's what downvotes are for, not flags.

After all, the not an answer flag text reads:

This was posted as an answer, but it does not answer the question. It should possibly be an edit, a comment, another question, or deleted altogether.

Again, it does answer the question, so the flag is invalid.

share|improve this answer
I agree, but still feel that it's better as a comment rather then answer. – akjoshi Jun 14 '12 at 13:48
No. Short answers are still answers, not comments. You can use comments to point to a link the OP should follow, request additional information or to talk about something related to the question. But answers are answers. – Dennis Jun 14 '12 at 13:49
@Dennis Then why was one of the flags accepted, while the other was not? They both answer the question (though one is poorly written), they are both short. I see this a being a little inconsistent... – Gaffi Jun 14 '12 at 15:02
@Gaffi Terse != NAA. Inconsistency happens when twelve (soon 15) people have to make individual judgement calls. – Tim Post Jun 14 '12 at 15:50
@TimPost I understand that, and I won't expect perfection from the mods, but I'm not sure there's much of a judgement call. I follow Dennis' logic just fine and I agree with it. I'm not trying to be petty; this issue will not be the downfall of SO. I guess it's more of a question of how do we address/respond to these inconsistencies? – Gaffi Jun 14 '12 at 16:00
@Gaffi The best way is to flag again and ask specifically for another moderator to review the flag. We will respect your wish if you do that. If two of us disagree with a flag and you still feel strongly that it's valid, then you've probably hit on a much broader discussion that should be raised here on meta. I have seen repeat flags like "Are you guys drunk or something? Can someone else look at this?" ... And they sometimes result in a diamond face palm. We bitched at Jeff to no end, don't think we'd hesitate for a moment to bitch at each other :) – Tim Post Jun 14 '12 at 16:29
@Gaffi: Easy. Write a deterministic algorithm for handling flags. – Won't Jun 14 '12 at 16:32
@TimPost Sounds good. :-) I haven't had a strong need to do this, but it's good to know you guys are approachable this way. – Gaffi Jun 14 '12 at 16:36
@Won't I'll get right on that! ;-) – Gaffi Jun 14 '12 at 16:36
@Gaffi There's 12 (and soon 15) of us for a reason. We're elected because the community thinks we're responsive and responsible. Just ask for another mod to look at it, we won't be offended :) If we were easily offended, man .. we'd be in serious trouble, no? – Tim Post Jun 14 '12 at 16:47
@Gaffi: I still don't think there's any inconsistency, even if both flags were handled by the same moderator (which may or may not have happened). The first answer is short, but coherent. The second – as I already said in another comment – isn't even a full sentence. Q: What does the int indicate apart from the type integer? A: For the method's return value. – Dennis Jun 14 '12 at 17:03
@TimPost Thanks Tim, I would do that from next time, my intention was not to offend any one. – akjoshi Jun 14 '12 at 17:36
@Dennis With a minor edit (rather than deletion):"It is the method's return value." I am not one to know in this instance, but this feels to me like a typo or perhaps lacking a complete grasp of the English language, not a plain-and-simple wrong answer. – Gaffi Jun 14 '12 at 17:54
@Gaffi: Revision 1 of the question asks In a C# method, what does the int stand for in public int?, so it was deliberately posted one as one half of a sentence. The question got edited, the answer lost its context, and it was deleted. – Dennis Jun 14 '12 at 17:59

Well I don't think that either answer should be (or should have been) deleted.

Just because an answer has a few words does not a bad answer make, and they were both answering the question.

share|improve this answer
Though the second answer is so poorly phrased that upon inspection it might seem to be an unfinished blurb. – Bart Jun 14 '12 at 13:42
@Bart possibly, but then someone could edit and fix it, but the amount of words does not make an answer not an answer – amanaP lanaC A nalP A naM A Jun 14 '12 at 13:43
Sure. Just saying that's why the flag might have been approved. – Bart Jun 14 '12 at 13:44
@Dennis yes he did, the answer was deleted by a moderator. – amanaP lanaC A nalP A naM A Jun 14 '12 at 13:45
You are right few words doesn't mean bad answer, my intention was not that it's a bad answer; I thought that it's better as comment rather then answer (my personal view); and I still think it was correct, as one flag got approved. – akjoshi Jun 14 '12 at 13:45
@akjoshi that is why there is a comment section in the flagging area. For you to say just that and not to just flag as not an answer. – amanaP lanaC A nalP A naM A Jun 14 '12 at 13:46
@amanaPlanaCAnalPAnaMA: Actually, it was converted into a comment – Dennis Jun 14 '12 at 13:48
@Dennis odd, it seemed like a real answer. – amanaP lanaC A nalP A naM A Jun 14 '12 at 13:49
@amanaPlanaCAnalPAnaMA: It's not even a full sentence. Q: What does the int indicate apart from the type integer? A: For the method's return value. – Dennis Jun 14 '12 at 13:51
@Dennis hmmm that is true... – amanaP lanaC A nalP A naM A Jun 14 '12 at 13:53
@Dennis You mean when you ask a question, you don't expect to receive just a prepositional phrase in response? =) – jadarnel27 Jun 14 '12 at 13:53
@amanaPlanaCAnalPAnaMA ok, I will take care of that in future; but I ahve seen qite few answers being changed to comments and that's why I asked this question. – akjoshi Jun 14 '12 at 13:55

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