Regard the following scenario. One asks a question and there are some comments, some of them followed up by others. In the end, all the constructive ones have been incorporated as improvements to the OP and the rest has been addressed but rejected or deemed irrelevant. The same process is carried out for the replies, one of which becomes the accepted answer.

What I usually do at this point is to remove all my comments and flag the rest as obsolete. Note that we can assume other kinds of comments not exist in the scenario.

Am I too nit-picky and needlessly sugar-coating or does that contribute with gain for the community? In order to matter, there's a need for a lot of others doing that as well, of course.

  • How can I improve this question? I see a down-vote and close-vote. Dec 27, 2015 at 19:49
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    It's kind of strange to ask "this is what I do. It's wrong, isn't it?" If you truly feel it's wrong, stop doing it. If you feel it's right, ask the question honestly. Dec 27, 2015 at 20:01
  • "Am I too anal": No, you are never too anal. O:-) Dec 27, 2015 at 20:03
  • @KateGregory I'm afraid I didn't get your point. I can't see any part that corresponds to "it's wrong, isn't it" not did I intend it to be that way. Please point out where you see it and I'll be happy to rephrase immediately. Also, I'm not clear if you refer to my question or my comment. Dec 27, 2015 at 20:08
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    @SimonKlaver Perhaps nit-picky would be a better choice of word, hehe. I'll change it right now. The question remains, though. Dec 27, 2015 at 20:10
  • So you want to know if you should clean up obsolete, irrelevant and incorporated comments?
    – random
    Dec 27, 2015 at 20:14
  • @random Not quite. I want to know if it's wise (if there's any point) to do that. I imagine it is and I do that. But perhaps it doesn't really matter and I should use my time on more urgent tasks here on SE. It's not a question if it's needed more or less then e.g. editing and such. Dec 27, 2015 at 20:16

1 Answer 1


According to the comment moderation guide, comments are for transient information; they're like Post-It notes. Since one of the flag reasons is obsolete, it logically follows that obsoleteness is an acceptable reason for removing comments. Besides, comments are second-class citizens; they shouldn't be missed if they were to suddenly vanish.

There's certainly nothing wrong with flagging comments that have outlived their usefulness. There's little point in flagging every comment in a conversation as obsolete, since moderators frequently toast all such comments on a post in response to one flag. Don't worry about obsoleteness, however, if the comments are hidden behind a "show num more comments" link.

  • Very useful. Didn't know there was such a guide. Apparently I'm doing it right, hehe. Thanks! Dec 27, 2015 at 20:23

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