I came across a question yesterday that consisted of a single sentence (with poor grammar to boot), followed by a load of poorly formatted code. I flagged it as low quality and it has since received two down votes. Was I wrong to flag this as a low quality question?

It seemed to fit the description of low quality ("This question has severe formatting or content problems. This question is unlikely to be salvageable through editing, and might need to be removed.") perfectly. I could spend a few minutes reformatting the messy code, but the tags are wrong and the actual question shows no effort at all. Simply cleaning up the code wouldn't have made the question any more understandable.

I'm just curious if I was wrong to flag it as such and what fits the description more appropriately?

  • If the post was edited since you flagged it the flag is declined automatically. Mar 8, 2013 at 15:37
  • The message says "declined - a moderator reviewed your flag, but found no evidence to support it"
    – j08691
    Mar 8, 2013 at 15:39

1 Answer 1


I declined your flag. Since you've brought this up, I'll answer here as to why:

The question is not very low quality. Yes, it has issues, but it's not so far gone that a moderator should intervene.

It needs a little cleanup, to be sure, but looking at it, there's no action I would take other than cleaning it up through editing.

Remember, Moderators are human exception handlers, and flags to us should be treated as something only we can fix. In this case, you could certainly edit the question, or clean it up if it's your subject area.

We've been given a directive to be more stringent in flags we accept. Your flag could have been helpful otherwise, but not as a 'very low quality' flag.

  • Thanks for the reply. Normally I would attempt to clean up a question like this, but after looking at it I realized that even if I cleaned up the code, the question still pretty musch sucked.
    – j08691
    Mar 8, 2013 at 15:46
  • 1
    @j08691 if you had flagged it as 'not a real question', I could have possibly seen that as being helpful (though I still wouldn't have closed it; in this case I would have marked the flag as helpful). Don't worry about one flag being declined; but do start worrying if lots of your flags are declined. Mar 8, 2013 at 15:54

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