-6

Recently, a user 'called to arms' on chat to cast flags on potentially incorrect advise on Stack Overflow. As this incorrectness was seemingly correct, I flagged en mass, without giving it much thought (main reason was that I trusted the user. That trust has now evaporated. Trust comes on foot, but leaves by horse...).

However, after looking more carefully, most answers only needed a simple caveat to be fixed! (this has since been added).

After looking even more carefully, I noticed the factual inaccuracy was due to a generalization of the question by the same users calling to arms!

Clearly, I have been misled! Personally, I will be more critical of these 'calls to flag' in the future, but I hope I can shield others from making the same mistake!

All that ends well is well, and the answers now have the caveat and that makes them correct.

However, all the flaggin was completely unnecessary! Hence, a call of

Hey, I think these answers are incorrect, can someone fix them?

Would have been a lot better than

Hey, these answers are wrong. Go flag them!

This is an advice to be very cautious when 'subverting the system' in this manner!

Perhaps this needs implementation as policy or a mod tool, but I think being aware of the issue is a good start.

So, my main point is this:

Wouldn't it be better if people simply called for attention, instead of for flags? And if such requests of the 2nd nature are made, assume the first.


Should I flag obviously wrong answers as NAA? is related but not a dupe. That one talks about when to flag. This one talks about when to listen to people who ask you to flag.

3
  • 1
    "That one talks about when to flag. This one talks about when to listen to people who ask you to flag." Sure, but the answer is clearly given in the dupe. No matter if someone asks you to put a wrong flag, or that was your own idea. – πάντα ῥεῖ Mar 26 '18 at 11:09
  • I downvoted! Because of! An abundance! Of exclamations! – user1228 Mar 26 '18 at 19:43
  • @Won't Weird reason, but ok – Discrete lizard Mar 26 '18 at 21:02
10

I flagged en mass, without giving it much thought

Always think before you flag. Chat's pretty free flow and flags can have a element of opinion. Context is always important.

However, after looking more carefully, most answers on needed a simple caveat to be fixed! (this has happened).

Great idea, and you can fix it then

Hey, these answers are wrong. Go flag them!

Erm, you do not flag wrong answers. Its literally one of the stock flag rejection reasons.

That said in many cases - awareness is handy. That said, the right place to handle it in the chat - take a look, let folks know it seems off, and just carry on.

If you yourself need to do a call to arms, why not do it on meta?

1
  • +1 for the last line, likely it was simply in the wrong place! – Discrete lizard Mar 26 '18 at 10:29

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .