Yes, I have seen this question (and all of its derivatives):
I'm having a hard time reconciling consistency. Earlier today, a colleague had a a link-only answer (10K) flag declined:
This morning, I flagged the same answer with the same - albeit slightly more verbose - reason:
It was marked as helpful, and the answer was deleted by Andrew Barber.
So, my question, naturally, is: what gives?
Did my flag get processed by a different moderator who feels differently about link-only answers?
Was my more elaborate comment simply more persuasive?
Was her flag declined by one of the moderators (like George) who feel that we should leave a comment on these answers first, hoping that the author will fix it before it has to be flagged?
You'll note that, in this case, the question is from last summer, and has many extensive answers already. Regurgitating content from the official documentation into a new answer is unlikely to be helpful to many people.
You should also be well aware that the likelihood of someone commenting on a crap answer goes down and down over time, because of things like retribution. I know I am much less likely to comment on a crap answer if there are down-votes already (or I suspect there will be soon), because of too many incidents I've had where people have "paid me back" - even when I wasn't a down-voter.
I understand we really haven't come to any consensus about exactly where to draw the line on link-only answers, but for those of us interested in cleaning up the site and dissuading people from posting this junk, it would be great to get some consistency. If we need to post a comment and give the author of the post 24 hours to respond, then maybe that should be stated somewhere, and all moderators should be responding to them the same way.
Okay, so Shog9 has made it clear that we should be flagging link-only answers that meet the right criteria as very low quality instead of other > requires moderators' attention. No problem. However, if someone has up-voted the answer (hey, the whole community can't agree that a link-only answer is not helpful), this flag category is no longer available. So what then?