In the spirit of:

Obscure the title and text when question is deleted by Community from spam/offensive flags

The same should be done for comments by the offending author for that post as well. If the post was considered spam or offensive, what possible redeeming quality could the comments of that post by that same user have?

If such a comment was useful enough, then the post could have been edited into shape and possibly saved. But if the community went through with it and got the post deleted, then it's unlikely the comments would be considered constructive or have any use. Maybe take into account that the user account was deleted too?

... yeah... no thanks... (SO 10k, comments have been purged now)

Yeah it's not visible to most of the public... but it's just a minefield for 10k users.

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    The real problem here is that destroying a user does not destroy the comments with it. – Doorknob Feb 17 '15 at 3:19
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    @Doorknob that would go beyond disrupting people, read my answer. – Travis Feb 17 '15 at 3:36

I'd say the real problem is not that the comments aren't deleted, but simply that they are shown (to 10k+ users) by default.

The SE user interface already knows how to hide excess comments, and to reveal them when the user clicks a "show more comments" link. We should simply apply that same feature to author-written comments on spam / offensive posts.

(Ideally, the "show more comments" link text on such posts should also be changed to indicate that some of the hidden comments may be offensive. But even without that finishing touch, just hiding the comments at all would still be an improvement over status quo.)

Update: I wrote a simple client-side implementation of this feature for SOUP. (It's in the v1.29 devel branch, if you want to try it.) For those interested, here's the code:

$('.deleted-answer').has('.hidden-deleted-answer').each( function () {
    var $this = $(this), comments = $(this).find('.comment').hide();
    if ( comments.length == 0 ) return;

    var ui = StackExchange.comments.uiForPost($this);
    var count = ui.jtBody.data('remaining-comments-count') + comments.length;
    ui.jtBody.data('remaining-comments-count', count);
} );

It works by locating any deleted answers with hidden content, hiding any comments they may have, and then calling the SE comments UI to tell it that there are new comments to be loaded, thus enabling the link to do so. I was originally going to hide only those comments posted by the answer author, but locating those reliably turned out to be surprisingly tricky.

To avoid the comments being briefly visible while the page loads, the fix also includes a CSS rule to hide comments on all deleted posts, which is disabled once the code above has successfully completed. This may cause comments on deleted posts to show up with a slight delay, but that's probably acceptable.

Ps. Here's an offensive-flagged answer with (not particularly offensive) comments for testing. Took me a few minutes to find one, so I thought I'd save everyone else (and myself, later) the trouble. And here's a non-offensive deleted answer with lots of comments for comparison.

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  • Collapsing would be just as good. Just as long as it isn't just displayed for all to see. – Jeff Mercado Feb 17 '15 at 6:04
  • Update: The linked answer doesn't seem to be marked as offensive any more; does the offensive status "wear away" after a while? Anyway, here's a few more offensive-flagged answers with comments for testing. – Ilmari Karonen Jul 12 '15 at 21:01

I think that if the community can go through the trouble to close a question as spam, they can at least look at the comments. Not only your example, but I have seen spam comments on non-deleted posts by other users. It seems a lot of people will read a question, and the answers, and nothing more, instead of flagging/deleting them as spam as they should be.

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    There's a huge difference between deleting an account and destroying an account. Destroying is reserved for accounts whose sole purpose on the site was to spam questions or just be malicious in general, and it's unlikely any of their comments will have been useful contributions. The feature itself already deletes all questions and answers with the account, regardless of score. – animuson Feb 17 '15 at 3:37
  • @animuson I wasn't aware that they were even different things, just a misunderstanding. Thanks. – Travis Feb 17 '15 at 3:40
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    Nobody closes questions as spam. Spam gets deleted by flags, in questions and answers alike. If you see non-deleted spammy comments, flag them for moderator's attention. – user259867 Feb 17 '15 at 3:56
  • @FamousBlueRaincoat I'm aware of that and I do flag them,I I'm just saying that a lot of the community seems to skip a lot of comments. – Travis Feb 17 '15 at 3:58

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