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This question already has an answer here:

I'm wondering if there could be some changes to the pro-forma comments from the "Recommend Deletion" button in the Low Quality Posts review queue. This question is asking for suggestions for what would sound better.

Currently they seem really blunt, especially to a new user.

  • This is commentary on another post, not an answer

    “This does not provide an answer to the question. To critique or request clarification from an author, leave a comment below their post.”

    "Critique"? "Request clarification"? - A significant number of users are likely not native English speakers:

  • This is a “thank you” comment

    “Please don't add "thank you" as an answer. Instead, vote up the answers that you find helpful.”

    Hmm this is okay - maybe a why we don't like them - lots of forums are fine with it?

  • This is an “I’m having this problem, too” comment

    “This does not really answer the question. If you have a different question, you can ask it by clicking Ask Question. You can also add a bounty to draw more attention to this question.”

    But the chances are that that question will get closed as a duplicate if someone asks "I have the same issue as this question. Please help me".

  • This is a different question posted as an answer

    “If you have a new question, please ask it by clicking the Ask Question button. Include a link to this question if it helps provide context.”

    This is better but they are likely to do a similar thing - a low quality question.

  • This is a link-only answer (and not spam)

    “While this link may answer the question, it is better to include the essential parts of the answer here and provide the link for reference. Link-only answers can become invalid if the linked page changes.”

    What are the essential parts? Make the criteria the we judge it on clear - the link could be removed and the answer is still an answer.


I could quite easily be wrong here - and these comments could be pretty good to the alternative, but I feels like we are being overly blunt to users when we could explain more of what we expect to them.

These comments are not very... welcoming, or explanatory. They're saying "Your question is being deleted because it doesn't fit our rules" not "This question will be deleted soon because we don't like comments in answers because this is a Q&A site not a forum". There is no point driving away potential users - maybe SO doesn't need any more, but there are sites where every new user is wanted, and these comments simply push them away from the site.

So, is there anything these could be changed for, to sound a bit better?

marked as duplicate by Tim, Community Nov 19 '15 at 0:17

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

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    Where did you get that diagram from? A decent number of ethnic Asians grew up in the US, and are very good at English. – Undo Oct 30 '15 at 15:00
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    I agree wholeheartedly! – Fabby Oct 30 '15 at 15:10
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    The word blunt is used incorrectly - if you want comments to use Simple English and fewer long words please say so. This is no big deal for me, though. YMMV – Deer Hunter Oct 30 '15 at 18:55
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    @DeerHunter my argument is they're not very... welcoming or explanatory. They're saying "we've done this because we don't like this" not "this is a bad thing - we rather you do that because of X" – Tim Oct 30 '15 at 19:33
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    Then you should say exactly this. Bluntness has specific meaning, and we cannot read your mind to guess what you mean by your title. – Deer Hunter Oct 30 '15 at 20:07
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    Thank you for bringing this up! I have review privileges on two sites, both of which fall into the category of wanting, and needing, new users. I'd really appreciate something more welcoming and explanatory. Sometimes if I see a post in the queue, I link to it and leave a comment explaining why it might end up being deleted. Of course that's not practical for people who are responsible for large review queues, so different wording would be great. I'll try to think of something helpful to contribute. – Sue Oct 30 '15 at 20:37
  • @Sue thanks! It's sites like those - beta especially - that need better "adoption" of new users. I also hoping my Mentor Privilege (shameless plug) will (maybe) help with this! – Tim Oct 30 '15 at 20:49
  • @DeerHunter I've added that comment to it - but I'm not sure how to change the title to express that. – Tim Oct 30 '15 at 20:50
  • That Mentor Privilege is a great idea!! Thanks for the link. Mentors, one especially, have made all the difference for me. They're why I'm still here, and, if I've made any positive contribution to SE, they're largely responsible! So as not to be off-topic here, I'll go comment over there! – Sue Oct 30 '15 at 21:26
  • I dunno mate. I get that you're trying to improve things, but by the time one of these comments needs to be posted, the author of the original post has already demonstrated a failure to bother reading any of the Help Centre and discover how this site works. I don't see a reason to molly-coddle them at this stage. They broke the rules through ignorance and laziness — be blunt. And, to be honest, I don't think these messages are all that blunt. Recreating the Help Centre in them (by e.g. explaining how SO is not a forum and thus needs no "thanks") is definitely not appropriate. – Lightness Races in Orbit Nov 4 '15 at 3:08
  • @Tim: When users sign up they are presented with a Tour, which explains all that. If they didn't bother to read that, that's their own fault. Even if there wasn't a Tour, reading the site rules is a basic tenet of community etiquette wherever you go. When you travel abroad, it is your responsibility to research the laws and any half-intelligent individual will do so as a matter of course. (cont.) – Lightness Races in Orbit Nov 4 '15 at 10:47
  • (cont.) "Did you read the help centre before posting" is no excuse whatsoever, nor is it even an argument. Again I have zero interest in reproducing it all in comments on every question posted by the lazy, causing noise. If nothing else, where is your aversion to DRY?! – Lightness Races in Orbit Nov 4 '15 at 10:49
  • @Tim: What's wrong with suggesting someone perform some research, and scan for duplicates? You seem to want us to just do everything for them, because "help". – Lightness Races in Orbit Nov 4 '15 at 13:25
  • Oh brother. This is not about "not driving new users away" or about "being nice". This is about drawing a line. The moment you start doing everything for new users, removing any need for them to read or really do anything at all, is the moment the quality of the site plummets. Plummets. Neither "but I want to help people" nor "I want every new user to stay here forever as my new best friend - if just one person doesn't come back, regardless of their value or post quality, we've failed as a people!" are valid arguments against that. You can "be nice" ... but don't be a pushover. – Lightness Races in Orbit Nov 4 '15 at 16:59
  • Honestly, if some "user123456" leaves after one question because they couldn't be bothered to read the Help Centre, ask on-topic questions, and write quality posts that will be useful to the community, that is not a problem. Sacrificing all our principles and quality metrics just to keep new users from going away is silly. These people are grown adults, for the most part. Putting in some effort is their responsibility, new or not. – Lightness Races in Orbit Nov 4 '15 at 17:01