Even though the flag menu is extensive and promotes better flagging, we still have only three types of flags from a moderation standpoint:
- Stuff the community can and is dealing with
- Stuff the community can't deal with
- Stuff the community isn't dealing with, but can. This usually happens on low view questions.
While making my moderator 'rounds' today, I found over 300 flags. Granted, that is a bit unusual for many, but I'm the only one in my particular time zone (GMT +8).
I'd like to attend to stuff that the community can't handle first. This may be:
- Someone needing an account merge
- Someone identified and reported a sock puppet
- Someone reporting a rare sighting of a serial down voter in action, or other hostile behavior over time
- All of the other things people put in 'other'
This is what I propose:
- Inflate flag weight for 'other' flags until the user gives us a reason not to. Three bad 'others' sends them back to their normal spot in the pile.
- Reward valid 'other' flags a bit higher if valid. These are how users directly communicate with us. It's more than just clicking a radio button and going on with your day. If someone takes the time to type something, they obviously have more of a vested interest in seeing it resolved.
- Add a note under "other" that wrong answers / etc aren't serious problems and don't require moderator attention.
My hope is, we can service flags according to urgency as well as accuracy, which might help cut down on flags in general.
The alternate to that (more simply implemented perhaps?) is to give us a way to see the 'other' flags first. Give us the home grown stuff first, or the ability to see it first, before moving on to the canned goods :)
Final edit: I do realize that this system is undergoing changes, in fact many and is coupled with the moderator tools. Please treat this as a 'wish' for when things settle down, if needed :)
Perhaps add a 'requires more immediate attention' option, which degrades into the same weight as 'other' if several false positives are sent.
In short, the most trusted users don't always find the most urgent issues. We need to fix that.
This has been implemented. Flags can now be filtered by type.