Currently, moderators cannot see quickly exactly which privileges a user who has flagged actually has. As described in this answer by animuson,

when reviewing flags, we don't see your reputation. Without opening your profile, we have absolutely no idea what privileges you actually possess.

In the linked question this has lead a moderator to advice a user to do something he/she doesn't have the privilege to do.

My opinion is that moderators should see the relevant privileges, as it is important when writing out a response. New, low-rep users take what moderators respond to flags for granted, and if the advice is wrong due to grounds that user hasn't got enough privileges, it's a really mixed message that will lead to unneeded frustration.

Here's another recent example where lack of seeing the privileges has lead a moderator to do a wrong decision.

  • @monica-cellio Indeed, it looks similar, addressing the same knowledge gap that's really the problem here as well. It should be shown, one way or the other. – eis Dec 21 '14 at 18:54

The examples which you have cited do not justify the feature request.

Raising custom moderator flags asking them to retag posts will be declined because it is incorrect flagging. On sites which allow you to suggest an edit, you should submit an edit, else leave it to the community members who have the privilege to edit to do it. All your examples are from SO/MSO, which has a very large community and raising custom moderator flags for retagging posts is incorrect.

The quotes from the posts by SO moderators (animusion and Bill the Lizard) don't indicate that if they had seen that the OP didn't have rep, they would have handled those flags and retagged posts. Moderator flags are for actions which require their intervention.

If you don't have rep for actions such as

  • editing posts
  • closing a post

you should not be using custom moderator flags. These are actions that can be and should be handled by the community, not by custom mod flags.

Quoting Robert Harvey's answer from the same post:

Moderators are reluctant to act as proxies for users who want to perform actions for which they haven't yet earned sufficient reputation.

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  • My point isn't really about if user should use moderator flags or not. My main point is that there seems to be several cases where the communication of the moderator has been wrong due to lack of context, instructing new users to do things they just cannot do. If a moderator would see the privileges of a flagger, they could communicate in a way that would be more helpful, avoiding confusion. – eis Dec 21 '14 at 17:13
  • Not really, they would still use canned comments. The root cause is incorrect flagging, not the moderator interface. We focus on the cause of the problems. It is similar to the case where we address problematic questions instead of focusing on the problematic answers it attracts. The moderator custom response is an after-effect of incorrect flagging, but the real problem is the flag, not the response message. – Infinite Recursion Dec 21 '14 at 17:23
  • I don't understand what you mean by canned comments? In my example the comments were clearly wrong, and I don't see why moderator would have made them, given correct information. Also, in one of my examples (this one) the flagging was actually a correct thing to do, according to the moderator - but moderator couldn't know that since he didn't see the privileges user had. The privileges user have affect these decisions. – eis Dec 21 '14 at 17:44
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    Canned comments are pre-worded comments which moderators use in such situations - "declined - flags should only be used to make moderators aware of content that requires their intervention". The example by Bill the Lizard is a confusion between the rollback and edit privileges. It isn't related to a confusion about user's rep and privilege, but related to a confusion in understanding that rolling back and editing are not the same thing. A lot of users have this confusion. – Infinite Recursion Dec 21 '14 at 18:13
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    Bill thought everybody can rollback, so even if he could see user has X rep or Y rep, he would have thought user can rollback (confusing it with edit which any user can do). Showing him X and Y will not change the outcome or the message. – Infinite Recursion Dec 21 '14 at 18:14
  • these really do not seem canned comments to me ("Why can't you do it yourself?", "So...edit it? What do you need a moderator for?") – eis Dec 21 '14 at 18:51

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