I often try to flag inappropriate content. For instance I flagged the following answers for moderator attention with a message Link-only answer:

Support for script_file in Nest library for Elasticsearch

Digital signature with iText and beID (using 2048 RSA key) on JDK8

But this flag was rejected with the following motivation:

declined - a moderator reviewed your flag, but found no evidence to support it

The above answer is clearly an answer only containing a link, which as I understand it is discouraged as stated in:


The above page states:

Why and how are some answers deleted?

Answers that do not fundamentally answer the question may be removed. This includes answers that are:

commentary on the question or other answers
asking another, different question
“thanks!” or “me too!” responses
exact duplicates of other
barely more than a link to an external site
not even a partial answer to the actual question

So I don't understand why my flag was rejected?

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    Please post on MSO instead of MSE. It can be handled better there. – Patrick Hofman Jun 17 '15 at 14:00
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    @PatrickHofman - I'm not sure what you mean with MSO? – Cyclonecode Jun 17 '15 at 14:04
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    Meta StackOverflow. You have entered the government building now (Meta StackExchange) – Patrick Hofman Jun 17 '15 at 14:04
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    Here's the answer to your problem: Can we get some consensus on what flag to use for link only answers?. Basically flag the actual problem, not the link, meaning a flag that says "link only answer" is not a good flag. Use a normal flag (Low Quality, Not An Answer), or a custom flag explaining the actual problem – psubsee2003 Jun 17 '15 at 14:07

You are right on this not being an answer (the other one is valid). The user has answered before and this is just an additional link that is useful to the reader. Instead of posting a new answer, OP could have better edited his post.

I have edited the link in his original post now.

I do understand a moderator could miss this when handling the flag, it is not very easy from the answer itself it should have been an edit.

Update: it seems you have used a custom flag reason to flag this answer. That is wrong. You should have flagged it as not-an-answer.

  • IMHO the flag was improperly used. A flag that says only "Link Only Answer" is not a valid flag. That could be as much why the flag was rejected as an oversight by the moderator. Instead the OP here could have written more explanation as to what was wrong. – psubsee2003 Jun 17 '15 at 17:05
  • There is no link-only flag. It is not-an-answer, which is correct here. Oh my. Did he use that as text? – Patrick Hofman Jun 17 '15 at 17:18
  • Read the OP's first sentence: For instance I flagged the following answers for moderator attention with a message Link-only answer:. That was wrong. – psubsee2003 Jun 17 '15 at 17:19
  • Indeed. Corrected. – Patrick Hofman Jun 17 '15 at 17:20

No, it wasn't just a link. The answer itself is:

This has been added recently

And the link is just a bonus, proof that it was really done.

Author of the answer could have added a quote or screenshot of the comment by gmarz, but it's really not needed.

All in all, in the context of the question, this is valid answer.

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