Earlier today I flagged this question using the following flag option:
Questions asking us to recommend or find a tool, library or favorite off-site resource are off-topic for Stack Overflow as they tend to attract opinionated answers and spam. Instead, describe the problem and what has been done so far to solve it.
If you look at the edit history, shown below, I interpreted the original post's title and body to mean that they were asking for another utility, like SlowCheetah, which is why I flagged it with the rule I stated above. In addition, I try to do my best to also inform the user that their post does not meet the standards of the site by leaving a comment as you can see on the post. The poster acknowledged the feedback and updated their question, rendering my flag now invalid.
Ultimately, my flag was declined, which harms me because as we all know declined flags work against a SO user's total flag count:
Reference: Flag posts
How many flags do I have?
When you start out, you are allotted 10 flags per day. This number may increase to up to 100 flags per day:
You get one bonus flag per 2000 reputation. You are awarded additional bonus flags when you flag correctly - one bonus flag for every ten net helpful flags (helpful flags minus declined flags).
I only have 8 declined flags, and IIRC, 4 of those are because of situations just like this. So is it fair to negatively affect a member's total flag count, when the flag at the time of submission was accurate? As such, I propose a new flag status like "Inapplicable', which when used does not affect total flag count, or something similar to this, so that situations like this do not negatively affect a user's flag count. I understand I still have to have faith that a reviewer or moderator will see the post for what it was at the time the flag was submitted, but at least by adding this option, you provide reviewers and moderator's a means to take action in a fair manner.
I want to continue flagging questions and helping posters as much as I can, I just don't think it's fair to members that spend a lot of time flagging and helping members, to risk reducing their flag count just because of a shortfall of the system and because, let's be honest here, not all moderator's can act at the same level of objectivity, we all have differing viewpoints and interpretations. I suppose this bothers me more than other issues I've come across on the site because I flag posts to help keep the site focused and free of poor posts and yet receive no reputation for these types of efforts. The only positive thing you can reap are a few badges,
<sarcasm>yay!</sarcasm> or a negatively impacted flag count. Just doesn't seem fair IMHO when my affects contribute to increasing the quality of posts which is just as important as contributing a quality answer IMO.
And to add, this isn't the first time this has happened to me and many other members of the site. And yet, nothing has been done about it. Perhaps as a community we start spending a little bit more time little details like this to help keep people feeling positive about their efforts, especially those that aren't measured by reputation.
Thank you for your time,