Currently, when users are putting a custom flag on a post, there is a chance that this flag will be dismissed before a moderator could see it.

For example, if it was a close flag, and the question got closed, all flags about the question are getting removed. Including custom ones. This was reported already earlier, from what I see in similar questions.

The same happens when someone wants to report a spam user, and writes a comment in the flag, about it. If enough people are flagging the post as the basic "it is spam", the answer will get auto-deleted, as well as the flag. This means that it's possible that the moderator will not even see such report of a spammer account, and it makes it harder to actually find them, after, and prevent them from posting new advertisements.

So the request is: is it possible to make it so that custom flags can only be dismissed by moderators?

This would prevent the loss of information that would be given by a user.

  • 3
    Huh, I just kind of assumed these never got auto-dismissed
    – Zelda
    Commented Aug 9, 2012 at 13:10
  • 4
    For those who don't know, Gnoupi has been a former SU mod and above issue was discussed and verified by other mods in the Root Access chat room. Commented Aug 9, 2012 at 13:13
  • See also this question which was closed as duplicate of the other one.
    – avpaderno
    Commented Aug 9, 2012 at 13:26
  • 2
    Thanks for the duplicate, haven't found it earlier. Though seriously, how many times does it need to be reported, for someone from the SE team to actually answer something? @JeffAtwood, come back!
    – Gnoupi
    Commented Aug 9, 2012 at 13:27
  • The most annoying case of this I've ever seen was a user with only one question in a delete/undelete war. In some cases it is the right action though (e.g. you comment on an NAA saying "you should make this an edit to your question, not a answer" and flag saying "should be converted to edit")
    – Flexo
    Commented Aug 9, 2012 at 13:37
  • 2
    stackoverflow.com/posts/10930859/revisions is an example of this auto-dismissal behaviour being harmful. (Even without seeing the timing of flags there it's fairly easy to see what happened)
    – Flexo
    Commented Aug 9, 2012 at 14:14
  • @Flexo - now that's a nice trainwreck
    – Gnoupi
    Commented Aug 9, 2012 at 14:19
  • @Gnoupi Are you sure you want Jeff to come back? Remember, his standard response was [status-declined]...
    – yannis
    Commented Aug 9, 2012 at 19:17
  • 2
    @YannisRizos - Actually, it was status-bydesign. But still, at least it was an answer. Let's try another way: JeffAtwood, JeffAtwood, JeffAtwood!
    – Gnoupi
    Commented Aug 9, 2012 at 21:09
  • current design obscures an information needed for moderators to evaluate issues with flagged posts, as discussed here - "According to the record, I declined that flag, but I never even saw it..."
    – gnat
    Commented Nov 2, 2012 at 7:47
  • @animuson: Did this just get fixed?? Agh. Commented Oct 8, 2015 at 22:38
  • 2
    @NathanTuggy This has been fixed for years, the question just never got updated. Custom flags can never be dismissed by non-moderator action.
    – animuson StaffMod
    Commented Oct 8, 2015 at 22:39
  • @animuson: Good to hear. Commented Oct 8, 2015 at 22:39

1 Answer 1


I support this.

Since the reason for the flag is customized by a human, it doesn't make sense for the flag to be dismissed by a machine, since only a human can determine the purpose of the flag and whether or not corrective action is needed.

  • 8
    While we are at it, I'd like for questions with multiple flags for me to decline specific flags and accept specific flags, since there are times that posts have contradictory flags. Commented Aug 10, 2012 at 3:34

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