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The last few days I've been playing along flagging old crappy answers. I'm up to 50+ flags a day and it takes only about 10 minutes to use them all up (thanks to some great queries in What are the best ways to find answers that should be flagged or edited?). Now I have my flag weight over 689. Cool! And thankyou for the Deputy badge.

But ... we all know how this works ... I find myself wanting to know how that ranks. Can we have flag weight leagues please? Presumably there is value in running through all the nasty "plz send me teh codes I have a problem that contains the same word as this question" answers. Leagues would be the continued carrot for those of us who are playing.

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Will that encourage "don't mess with me, my weight is far higher than yours" attitudes? – Dr. belisarius Mar 21 '11 at 13:04
Not in my opinion. More a "woo hoo I am enjoying cleaning up this mess" attitude. – Kate Gregory Mar 21 '11 at 13:06
@Wether We don't see much "I have more reputation than you, so your opinion doesn't count" based arguments, so I'd guess that we wouldn't be doing that for weight. But I do love the idea of throwing one's weight around. – Adam Davis Mar 21 '11 at 13:12
@Adam Regrettably, I've seen a few of those lately :( – Dr. belisarius Mar 21 '11 at 13:21
@Wether: "don't mess with me, my weight is far higher than yours" attitudes can easily be adjusted by moderators. ;) – Bill the Lizard Mar 21 '11 at 13:26
@Wether Well I haven't, and since I've got far more reputation than you, I totally think you should give up trying to convince me and instead become a monk. An awesome monk who wanders the earth, fighting injustice, like Caine, from Kung Fu. Woo-pah! sounds of monitor glass breaking Uh... maybe I'll come back later, when my fist is less glass-splintery... yeah... – Adam Davis Mar 21 '11 at 13:27
@Adam You didn't see those just because I flagged them with my awesome flag-fu – Dr. belisarius Mar 21 '11 at 14:37
-1 As much as I'd like to see where I am compared to other users, flagging should not be encouraged just by the flag-weight. Otherwise we risk that people just flag to get a high flag-weight without understanding or knowing what they're doing (and what work is involved for other people). So far the main motivation is to keep the side clean, which is already shifting as we can see our flag weight now. – Time Traveling Bobby Mar 21 '11 at 15:32

We really don't want flags to be this much of a distraction/obsession. Flagging is great: we applaud it; but honestly, we really don't want it being the main aim. Go answer something instead ;p

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And: flagging is not your zero-cost downvote. – Arjan Apr 26 '11 at 13:48

Interesting idea. Competing for flag weight is likely to cause more flagging than otherwise, but since the moderators are limited, I'd rather have them spending time on real things you actually run into rather than encouraging people to go out and find things that could use moderator attention.

I think I'd rather see the moderators stepping in for exceptional cases, and if there are things that are easy to find/detect and fix, then we should probably assign those to the community in some way.

I'm not sure that making flag weight would be a good thing in the long run. On the other hand, it is self-moderating, in that if you flag poorly you'll simply be ignored, and if you flag well, then the things you are flagging should be attended to at some point.

But should we be using the moderators to vacuum up every little piece of debris on the street? Seems we shouldn't have so much work for them to do if the community tools were more capable. Maybe start assigning some of these flagging issues to 30k users...?

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Valid point. I know the moderators have noticed an increase in flagging, because of comments on the "Easy Way" question. Can some of them chime in to say whether they see the recent increased flagging as a good thing or as too much? I know for myself I don't normally come across the kind of scrunge that these queries turn up - and that if I did I would think less of the site. They are quite different than what I usually come across. – Kate Gregory Mar 21 '11 at 13:14
"I'd rather have them spending time on real things you actually run into rather than encouraging people to go out and find things". This is rather the opposite of the review page; it exists to get people to go out and find things that need mod attention – Michael Mrozek Mar 21 '11 at 13:19
Competition in flagging and flagging just for flag weight happens to largely be the reason I was never fond of publicizing the value. It's more useful to the moderators that you're motivated to flag stuff because you want to clean stuff up, not because you want to increase a number. Flagging a lot of junk that you can't handle yourself, even if you're going out of your way to do it, that's fine. Just do it because you want a clean site. – Grace Note Mar 21 '11 at 13:21
@Michael Within a very limited scope, but yes - we do encourage users who are interested in reviewing such items to do so. I think that page is not merely for flagging, though - it can (and probably should be) used to encourage people to guide new users, rather than report them. – Adam Davis Mar 21 '11 at 13:22

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