When questions, answers, or comments are flagged, that goes to the relevant site's mods and other high rep users.
When things in chat are flagged, that goes out to the vast sea of chat and inevitably someone else grabs it before the site's mods even are aware of it.
This makes it difficult for a given site's mods and users to cultivate their site the way they want to as a community.
Some background. We've been having a recent discussion about rudeness on our site. Much of that happens in chat. In addition, we've seen some harmful effects from chat on the site - without the democratic process and checks-and-balances of meta, you have newer less sophisticated users bullied into certain activities by a chat user that wouldn't pass muster as a meta, for example.
Different sites have different "limits" regarding offensive behavior, cursing, etc. We, however, want to cultivate our community in a specific way. So when I get a user that tells me "flagging in chat doesn't work. The chat moderators see such awful stuff on other chats that what we find offensive is laughable to them. I was once called a 'wussy' by a mod from another site because I flagged a comment about beating up prostitutes," I am concerned because
- That is not appropriate behavior on our site, and other mods have no idea about the rules on our site, the usual "bad actors" on the site, what's going on right now on our site, etc. and so are unequipped to make decisions that are correct for our site
- Such activity happens and there is no way for the site mods to know it ever happened (short of fanatically reading all chat room transcripts). Other ubermods happen by our site and take mod activities from time to time, but that is all nicely recorded in the mod tab and it catches our attention when it happens.
Obviously chat moderation and management could benefit from bunches of additional features, but I think the simplest one that would help us out is to segment chat like the sites are segmented and notify the related site's mods/users, and not the whole chat-o-sphere, of flags so that they can be handled by people with knowledge of the site and so that those who guide the site are aware of what's going on in their site's chat.