The canonical question on how a flag can be declined even though the action it suggests is still taken has this to say on what happens to off-topic flags that go through a review queue:
- If your flag was a recommend closure flag, if it receives three "do not close" responses in the Close Votes queue without a single close vote, it will be declined. When you flagged, this is what happened, but later others decided that the question was worthy of closure and therefore closed it.
I suspect this is not quite correct, and that at least one reviewer needs to agree on the flag on the closure reason as well. I would like confirmation of this interpretation before editing the faq answer.
More specifically, consider this example, where
- User A flagged a post as a duplicate.
- The first two reviewers voted to close.
- Three reviewers then voted to leave open.
- Three additional users saw the question and voted to close, presumably not through the review queue.
- The last close-voter reports that there were four close votes as off-topic (i.e. not as a duplicate) before they voted to close.
- User A reports a declined flag.
By the standards in the faq question, the flag should have been marked as helpful, unless I'm missing something. On the other hand, the declined flag is explained well if the review close votes also need to match the closing reason. (Alternatively, the review close votes might instead only need to match on whether the question is "off topic" in general, vs marking as a duplicate.)
Can a team member, or someone with detailed evidence, confirm this interpretation?