The first thing I saw when logging into chat was that this message had 14 flags.


I thought after 8 flags, a message was deleted and the owner suspended.

What gives?

Edit: Maybe my assumptions about the chat system are wrong.

Here is what seems to be the case in my experience.

  • When a user flags a message, it appears as a notification for all 10K users.
  • When another user flags, or a 10K user validates, the flag count is incremented.
  • When a 10K user invalidates, the flag count is decremented.
  • If the flag count reaches 0, the flags are removed and the notification disappears.
  • If the flag count reaches 8, the message is removed, and the owner suspended.

I can't recall anything that ever showed these to be false. Do I have some of them wrong? Is this the source of the confusion?

  • I think if someone marks the flag invalid it'll require yet another user to mark it valid until the net score is 0 or 6 – Ben Brocka Jan 17 '13 at 13:34
  • @BenBrocka Right, but how did it get to 14? – Kendall Frey Jan 17 '13 at 13:34
  • 1
    @KendallFrey: by having at least 7 of the flags being marked as invalid. – Martijn Pieters Jan 17 '13 at 13:41
  • @MartijnPieters But then it would appear as 7, not 14. – Kendall Frey Jan 17 '13 at 13:43
  • @KendallFrey: Why would that be? It has been flagged by 14 people. It just hasn't reached a threshold; think of those as the number of downvotes on a post. 'invalid' flags are upvotes, and the threshold is a score of -6. – Martijn Pieters Jan 17 '13 at 13:47

This was a controversial one (I didn't think it was that bad). It was flagged and counterflagged (a.k.a. "invalid") fairly evenly, so it never reached the threshold for deletion (six more flags than counter flags; see here), nor the threshold for being considered invalid (at least as many counter flags as flags, with a minimum of 2).

  • I'm quite sure that counter flags decrease the number displayed. – Kendall Frey Jan 17 '13 at 13:48
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    @KendallFrey I'm fairly sure balpha knows how the flag system on chat works, as he's one of the developers that wrote it ;-). – Mad Scientist Jan 17 '13 at 13:55
  • @KendallFrey: Perhaps you feel it should, but since Balpha is the author of the code, I think you should trust him a little when he tells you how it actually works. :-) – Martijn Pieters Jan 17 '13 at 13:57
  • See my edit. There appears to be some misconceptions somewhere. – Kendall Frey Jan 17 '13 at 14:01

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