Previous discussions:
Put restrictions in place for users who abuse/misuse custom close reasons
At what point are comments classified as rude or offensive for off-topic questions

I flagged a comment on a question, stating that the custom close reason was abused.

This site is for programming questions. It is NOT general Dramabook tech support.

Ideally I figured it would be changed to

This site is for programming questions. It is not for general Facebook end user support.

But it wasn't, in fact the reason was kept the same after closure.

Based on previous discussions (linked above), I was told that these types of comments are not constructive. How should I proceed in resolving the proper way to flag abuse in custom close reasons. I always thought custom closure reasons gave a chance to communicate to the original poster the details of the closure, not poke fun using words like Dramabook. How exactly does this contribute?

  • I didn't think mods were able to edit comments; the best they could do is delete them. – Servy Oct 4 '13 at 16:41
  • Two things could have been done 1) Delete the comment 2) Close the question using his own custom close reason. Not that hard. – phwd Oct 4 '13 at 16:43
  • 3
    @Servy They can edit comments – Michael Mrozek Oct 4 '13 at 16:44
  • Do you have a link to the question? – Bill the Lizard Oct 4 '13 at 16:52
  • 1
    Thanks, I edited the comment. – Bill the Lizard Oct 4 '13 at 17:04

The comment was attached to a custom close reason, and the mod handling it wasn't quite sure what to do with that. As you have the option to 'delete' or 'dismiss', and your original flag was a little difficult to understand, they opted for dismiss. The fact that it was a custom close reason threw them a bit.

So all mods know - if you see snark in a custom close reason comment, feel absolutely free to delete it and write something more helpful. Deleting it doesn't affect the closure, treat it as you would any other comment.

This was just an artifact of folks being unsure of how something new effects what they're used to doing, I'm surprised it took this long for the ambiguity to turn up, but at least we know it might cause confusion and have addressed it.

And, the comment has been fixed.

  • Good info. I'd noted a bit of hesitation on my part with that kind of thing. – Andrew Barber Oct 4 '13 at 19:10

The flag that was provided on the comment stated:

WTF is up with this flag reason. This abuse of custom reasons is off putting.

That doesn't make it particularly clear that what we needed to do was to change the word "Dramabook" in the comment to "Facebook". The comment itself, beyond the name for Facebook, was a viable explanation of a close reason (they believed this was an issue for Facebook end user support).

Personally, I'm always hesitant to edit comments, because without a visible edit history we're effectively putting words in someone else's mouth. The alternative would be to delete the comment, but given that this was an explanation of a close reason, that doesn't seem appropriate either.

  • So... you are basically stating that the close reason as it stands was perfectly okay and welcoming to providing further explanation for a new user. cool – phwd Oct 4 '13 at 16:59
  • In addition the comment flagged is the same type of comment from the same user re previous discussions as well. meta.stackexchange.com/questions/184783/… Cool as well I like how this works... – phwd Oct 4 '13 at 17:00
  • At this point, it doesn't matter about the declined flag, it's about presentation. This is defeating the purpose of the custom flag. Even if the flag was declined and the comment edited that would be perfectly fine. But apparently we see differently about that. – phwd Oct 4 '13 at 17:02
  • And please don't play smart with context. There were two flags on that question from me, the second one did go into further detail. Using partial information to skew opinion is off putting as well. Try again. – phwd Oct 4 '13 at 17:11
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    @phwd Brad is trying to help here, and he's not the one that declined the flag - easy man. Yes, there is a second flag, and the comment has since been edited. – Tim Post Oct 4 '13 at 17:18
  • @TimPost again at this point it's not even about the flag and if we are talking about the flag why was my flag reason exposed to public? I wasn't the one to disclose it. Brad knows what the flag says, I know what the flag says, you know what the flag says. Isn't there something that says no to this. In addition each mod can inspect users/flag-summary I don't see why I shouldn't be a little bit rattled when someone discloses a flag (private information between a mod and a user) in public when it's only a partial account. – phwd Oct 4 '13 at 17:38
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    @phwd The flag Brad quoted was a comment flag, so it's listed anonymously in the flag history. I don't think it was clear when Brad posted it that it was also your flag. The presentation in the history confused me a little when I first looked at it. Your "other" flag on the post itself is a lot more descriptive though, so I'm not sure why that one was declined. – Bill the Lizard Oct 4 '13 at 17:49
  • @BilltheLizard fair point. – phwd Oct 4 '13 at 17:53

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