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Recently I had a basic question that so many others before me have also had, so I searched SO and found the question.

There was an answer that indicated their previous great answer to a "similar" question.

This older similar question with 10x more views and hundreds of more votes was exactly what I was looking for, and it seemed to me beyond similar, to the point of duplicate. The only reason I found it was by wading through the answers and comments on the first page, which could have been avoided if only it had been marked as duplicate with a bold link at the top pointing me to the well established question with a great many more robust answers.

My first instinct was to flag as duplicate. But I hesitated because the question is over 4 years old with several upvotes, so I thought surely there's something distinct I'm overlooking here. Likewise, I assumed someone else surely had the same inkling and must have flagged it by now, so by that assumption I concluded the flag must have been declined. But why?

My question is: Is there a way to review a question's history for declined flags?

They should be anonymized so it's not visible who raised a flag, but at least a count of which type of flag and any reviewer comment why it was declined. This would be beneficial so that if I have a doubt about raising a flag, then I can at least vet the flag through it's history to see if there's a pertinent reviewer's comment on declination. This would prevent double jeopardy and unnecessary wasted time on behalf of flag reviewers.

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    Flag history is a no-go unless you're a mod, but would reviews completed on the post be what you're looking for? (I assume so given your wording, but want to clarify.) If so, the timeline of the post shows completed reviews. – Kendra May 17 '16 at 16:53
  • +1 @Kendra that's helpful, but not exactly for what I was looking. I accept that the current situation is a privilege issue and may show the flag reviews in the timeline for a mod. But I think I may need to edit my question to clarify the anonymized feature request, and the timeline would be a great location for it. – Jeff Puckett May 17 '16 at 18:30
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Direct answer to your question: such thing is not possible for ordinary users, even high rep.

However, when someone flags a question as duplicate (or cast a direct duplicate vote) auto comment is generated, as happened with my own vote.

So just look for such comments, and if you see such a comment and the question is not closed, it means either the closure failed (i.e. not enough users voted) or it was closed then reopened, something you can see in the question's revisions page.

That said, never hesitate to cast flags or votes for off topic or duplicate questions if you believe the question is indeed off topic or duplicate. Age of question does not matter - highest priority is keeping the site clean and organized.

  • This is a solution for the duplicate flag. Has that auto comment always been posted for duplicate flags? – Jeff Puckett May 17 '16 at 18:36
  • @Jeff yes indeed, from the very, beginning as far as I know. – Shadow May 17 '16 at 19:45

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