From an admittedly cursory reading of Updated comment flagging - Supporting the new Code of Conduct I see that much has been said and, apparently, done about "rude" comments.

Personally, though, I can cope easily with "rudeness" because I just ignore it. But what I find extremely unpleasant to cope with is irrelevance because I feel compelled to answer. Out of politeness but of course also just in case the person making the comment might eventually give a useful answer.

In some cases the author clearly just wants to show off. However, it is most often a matter of the author of the comment not having read the question.

For an example, see my question at Can an air-intake fan stop smoke wafting through a brick common wall?

Question: Is there a way to flag a comment as irrelevant? Perhaps something like: "Please re-read the question"?

Note. This is quite different from How to remove irrelevant answers to posts?

  • As mentioned, "no longer needed" is the best. However, I find it terribly phrased—because it implies that it was once needed, which is not at all true in every case. It should simply be "not needed." – Jason Bassford Aug 12 '18 at 18:42
  • Maybe takes a bit more time but you can always raise a custom flag, explaining that you were unsure which stock reason to apply to get the comment removed. – rene Aug 12 '18 at 18:50
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    @Jason Bassford I totally agree and vote for "not needed" – schremmer Aug 12 '18 at 19:02

Is there a way to flag a comment as irrelevant?

In general, as @Anne Daunted suggests, use the "no longer needed" option. As Shog9 explains here:

The middle flag - "no longer needed" - is new, and is intended to cover all of "too chatty", "obsolete", and the non-abusive uses of "not constructive".

The subtext used to be "this comment is obsolete, chatty or otherwise unnecessary" (emphasis mine); even though the wording slightly changed since Updated comment flagging - Supporting the new Code of Conduct, it's still the same flag. This comment seems to suggest you shouldn't worry about "not needed" vs. "no longer needed".

However, it seems like you want to have multiple comments removed here. In such a case, it might be better to use a custom moderator flag (on the post or on one of the comments you want to have removed), explain the situation and why you think these comments do not help in improving the post.

Also, if you see a single user repeatedly leave borderline unfriendly/rude comments, you can use a custom flag to bring this unwanted behaviour to ♦ moderators' attention.

  • If I use a custom flag for cherry-picking which comments to delete (or keep) I prefer a custom post flag instead of a custom comment flag as the former allows for 500 characters, the latter only 200 and if you include links you run out of space in no time. – rene Aug 12 '18 at 19:21
  • I do not think "hav[ing] multiple comments removed" is necessary because, once the first comment that is beside the point is removed, I think potential commentators will be more likely to read---and, if they can, address---the question. But I agree with Jason Bassford that "no longer needed" is heavily misleading or, at the very least, very obscure and completely ... beside the point. By contrast, "Not needed" is perfectly neutral and would likely be quite effective in that it would intrigue the commentator whose attention it would thus direct back to the question. – schremmer Aug 12 '18 at 20:02
  • "not needed" may be interpreted by somebody as "never needed", which doesn't include "no longer needed". – user202729 Aug 13 '18 at 9:03

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