In this answer it says that flagged comments can be handled automatically if flagged repeatedly (3 + (score / 3) flags = deletion). Which is great; mods are busy people.

In this answer, the venerable Bill the Lizard says that if all comments on a post are obsolete, you can flag the post (or one of the comments) with a custom flag saying that they're all obsolete, and the mod can remove them with one fell swoop. Problem is, that requires a mod.

What should I do when some of the obsolete comments are mine? I can't flag my own comments, and I don't like raising custom flags if I can avoid it.

You're wondering why I don't just delete them. There are two scenarios where I don't, at least not immediately:

  1. Someone has commented with incorrect information. In that situation, I reply to the comment telling them how they've got it wrong. (Sometimes, of course, they quite correctly reply telling me how I got it wrong, which is neither here nor there — we still end up with obsolete comments. :-) ) Frequently, they reply saying "you're right" but (near universally) leave the comment lying around. I can (and do) then comment again saying "Let's clean these up" and flag their comments as obsolete. But I can't flag mine. Nor do I want to remove mine while the incorrect comment is still there; it leaves a confusing situation for anyone coming to the post later.

  2. Someone has commented with correct information. In that situation, if appropriate (e.g., the post author isn't busily editing at the same time and I know enough to do it properly), I'll edit the comment into the post and reply with "You're right, edited that in." and flag their comment as obsolete. These are rarely removed by the commenter. And again I can't flag mine.

The first scenario is the more problematic, since I can go back 10-20 minutes later and remove my "edited that in" comment and there's no harm if their comment is still there.

I currently bookmark and check back periodically, but that's labor-intensive and I'd like a better way.

Ideally, I'd want to tie my comment to one I've flagged so that it's deleted automatically if the other one is (by flagging, or by the commenter). That's a fair bit of development, though, I'm guessing.

What should I do? Go with a custom flag saying "The conversation between X and me is now obsolete," even though that means dumping it on a mod?


What should I do? Go with a custom flag saying "The conversation between X and me is now obsolete," even though that means dumping it on a mod?

Yes. The whole point of having moderators is that they're there to do things that you can't do. You can't clean up the entire comment discussion on your own.

  • Yeah, I think I tend to be a bit too leery of adding work for the mods. This is what I'll do until/unless there's a better way added, or someone posts an alternative that makes sense. – T.J. Crowder Jun 29 '15 at 17:41

Personally I flag the post on which the comments I'd like to get removed with a custom flag and mods don't seem to protest; same applies for obsolete comments I guess.

One of those flags:

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