Background: Guaranteed flag-ban after a series of helpful flags

I've hit the "guaranteed" ban above more times than I should, the last time being just a few days ago.

Shog9 ♦ mentioned above, in the context of adjusting the actual ban logic, that "Realistically, I'm not sure this is worth optimizing for". Instead of programming away this case, could we provide some sort of warning to users that are about to trip it? Right now, the existing warnings don't cover this case - that is, the user goes straight from "everything looks ok, no warnings" to banned, with nothing in between.

Let's add a warning on the flag dialog that lets a user know that the are about to hit the "guaranteed" ban. The warning would most likely trigger based on the following criteria:

  • The user has had at least three non-comment flags declined in the past seven days.
  • The total number of non-comment flags handled in the past seven days (regardless of disposition) plus the number of non-comment flags still outstanding is eight or above (when the number reaches 10, they are in danger of the automated ban regardless of whether their most recent flags were helpful).

The actual warning text could look something like this:

Warning: Several of your flags have been declined in the previous week. Continuing to raise flags places you in danger of a flag ban, even if the flags are deemed helpful. Please see this post for more information.

This is not a duplicate of Flawed question-ban system because this question is about flag bans and the other is about question bans.

  • 1
    Possible duplicate of Flawed question-ban system
    – Rob
    Nov 4, 2019 at 23:43
  • 2
    @Rob totally different ban system. The OP is talking about flagging here, not asking questions or posting answers. Nov 5, 2019 at 2:44

1 Answer 1


You're quoting Shog:

Realistically, I'm not sure this is worth optimizing for.

But they also said something quite interesting before that:

For starters, there's no requirement that moderators process your flags in order - if your lousy flags were processed last, you'd still end up flag-banned.

Your flags are processed asynchronously in unspecified order, so you cannot reliably expect a helpful flag to compensate for a declined one.

And even if Shog's proposed solution was implemented in addition to yours, you would still not see the warning if you raised, say, three flags in a short while and all of them were later declined.

  • 1
    I agree that what the OP proposes is not a total solution, but at least it would improve the users' situation, that is, banned from raising flags. IMO, SO, Inc. should pay more efforts to solve/improve their system issues other than worrying about the so-called inclusiveness issue.
    – Nobody
    Nov 5, 2019 at 4:12

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