I have started reviewing posts recently and I notice a pattern with people who can't comment because their reputation is 1.

They will click answer and ask a question there something like here:
Strings in multidimensional array in C

Is there a button that I can click that will educate them on why they shouldn't do this and what to do instead?

4 Answers 4


Patrick's answer provides the systematic way to deal with these, which is using the review queue. You have 646 rep on SO as of this writing, so you can access First Post and Late Answers review queues, but not Low Quality Posts, which seems to be the main source of your exasperation in the comments.

There's no real way to automate this, unless you write a bot. However, reviewing is something that shouldn't be done by a bot, and actions you should've done that a bot does instead, like flagging, reviewing etc., unless explicitly approved by a Community Manager, can result in your getting banned.

I have an alternative route, which involves AutoReviewComments. It's a well-known userscript, also available as a Chrome and Firefox extension for those who don't have Tamper/Greasemonkey.

You can use the aforementioned userscript, plus the review comments available in SOBotics.org.

This, for instance, is the comment for NAA (<50 rep), written by Shog9 himself:

This does not provide an answer to the question. You can [search for similar questions](//$SITEURL$/search), or refer to the related and linked questions on the right-hand side of the page to find an answer. If you have a related but different question, [ask a new question](//$SITEURL$/questions/ask), and include a link to this one to help provide context. See: [Ask questions, get answers, no distractions](//$SITEURL$/tour)

That's the closest you can get to automation.


You can flag the answer or if you are already in review, choose the appropriate canned text when recommending deletion. See for an example this comment which comes from review:

This does not provide an answer to the question. Once you have sufficient reputation you will be able to comment on any post; instead, provide answers that don't require clarification from the asker. - From Review

If you want to, you can add a comment your own, but usually it is best to keep it with the canned comments.

  • I feel your blockquote is horrible user experience for new users. It's too hard for them anyway and they have almost no right (privilleges) at all. Now you come down and thell them to wait for reputation without explaining what's best way to get one for new users. And don't even answer their concerns because they really wanted to ask a question, quickly in comments, but they couldn't so they clicked answer, and you are explaining how to answer questions. Apr 27, 2017 at 5:50
  • That is what the canned message says. Not what I have made up my own. Updated the canned comment with all links which are in there. Apr 27, 2017 at 5:54
  • your blockquote part of my comment is misleading. I was judging the content of the message, not the author :) Apr 27, 2017 at 5:56
  • 1
    And you were asking for an automated way. This is it. You can argue the message contents but the mechanism you asked for. Apr 27, 2017 at 5:56
  • Fair enough. I'll ask new question. Apr 27, 2017 at 5:57
  • About what? To change the canned comments? Not exactly clear what is wrong. Apr 27, 2017 at 5:59
  • 2
    @MarkoAvlijaš - Pointing them to the help center, explaining that commentary submitted as an answer is not acceptable, is how we can help those users learn. Even if we allowed everyone to comment people would still submit commentary as an answer, so I don't have much hope, in any attempt to explain what we expect out of an answer anyways.
    – Ramhound
    Apr 27, 2017 at 12:42

If your device/OS supports it, you can use "keyboard shortcuts" to create your own "template comments" (eg if you're using iOS). Here are some of my own shortcuts:

  • -tour = Welcome to this site! From your profile I can see you never visited the guided tour (link within 'help', upper right). Please have a look at it to learn some of the basics of this site.
  • -sa = "Merci" for the "Thank you", but if my answer did help you, you may want to consider what's suggested also in this help page also.
  • -ic = Please consider integrating your comments in your actual question, since at any time your comments may be deleted via moderation.
  • -loa = This looks pretty much like a Link Only Answer. To reduce the risk it gets deleted via moderation, I suggest you try to improve your answer somehow (e.g. by including a relevant quote from the link you mentioned).

Actually I have many more of such shortcuts, eg to also use them when writing answers and/or suggesting edits, such as:

  • -rules = the Rules module
  • -d7 = PS: I'm assuming this question is about D7.
  • -dis = (disclosure: I'm a (co-)maintainer of this module)
  • -iop = Integrate comments from OPer.

Tip: The above is what works fine on iOS, for something similar that could work on Linux, you may want to have a look at AutoKey. Some more details about this:

  • "Assign hotkeys to paste predefined text" (for Ubuntu).

  • "An alternative to xdotool type" (if your desktop environment is Gnome or KDE). Here is a quote from this link:

    You define a phrase with an abbreviation and, optionally, a hotkey. When you type the abbreviation followed by a trigger character such as enter or tab (or press the hotkey), the abbreviation is replaced by the text of your phrase. There are a number of additional options controlling exactly how this works.

    If you need to get more sophisticated, you can write an AutoKey script. AutoKey scripts are written in Python which means that they are only limited by you coding ability.

Note to myself: what about Windows?

Easy, no? (btw: that's what my -en? shortcut translates to ...)

  • I am using linux, years ago I was using windows and I've never heard of this. Is this available for linux? Apr 27, 2017 at 7:51
  • @Marko I'm on Windows, but pretty sure you need to turn keyboard shortcuts on in your profile settings.
    – M.A.R.
    Apr 27, 2017 at 9:01
  • @MarkoAvlijaš : Solution to the problem, changes the problem ... Check the "tip" I added to my answer ... Good enough? Apr 27, 2017 at 11:23
  • Aha I thought you were doing it inside stackoverflow. I don't want to assign global keys just for a website, that's going way overboard IMO. Apr 27, 2017 at 11:25

There's no real 'automated' way to do this. I like my semibespoke comments so... I've done so.

Welcome to Stack Overflow - this isn't a traditional forum, it's a Q&A site. You shouldn't be asking a question here. You should probably have a look at the help center and tour to get a better idea of how things work here.

Is the comment I use in these cases. I also threw it a NAA flag. She can read that, even if it's deleted (and will get a notification anyway) and clearly hasn't gotten an informed badge so she has not read the help at all. It's the best we can do in these situations.

  • Much better message. Consider adding this link to it: meta.stackoverflow.com/questions/252149/… Apr 27, 2017 at 6:42
  • Actually - the message is what I usually use on Super User, and I'd rather rely on the basic/standard help pages over meta posts. Meta's nice for complicated things but this is a simple, fundamental misunderstanding of our model more than anything.
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Apr 27, 2017 at 6:44

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