Usually, flagging as spam will generate automatic downvotes.

This morning on Super User I noticed this wasn't happening.

This is one that was deleted quite quickly, but still only shows -2, one of which was mine (added manually), as you can see from the blue arrow.

spam question with score of +0/-2

This doesn't seem to be a duplicate of Post not getting automatic downvote on abuse flag which appeard to have been sock-puppetry or similar.

I managed to grab its original URL from the front page, which I'd not yet refreshed - https://superuser.com/questions/1531904/ if that might be helpful.

  • 1
    I just tested on this post (and retracted), and it seems to work. I think what may have happened is that you cast your flag at the exact same time that the moderator who bindingly flagged did, causing yours or theirs to not register. Mar 11, 2020 at 7:51
  • 6
    It happened on 2 spam posts in a row, otherwise I'd have not considered reporting it. I probably only see 2 or 3 of these a day, so I'll have to keep an eye out on the next one...
    – Tetsujin
    Mar 11, 2020 at 7:53
  • 2
    I have noticed that the downvote can be delayed by several seconds, this just starting happening recently.
    – greg-449
    Mar 11, 2020 at 8:21
  • 3
    More observations today suggest that sometimes the downvote is delayed and sometimes it doesn't happen at all.
    – greg-449
    Mar 11, 2020 at 9:24
  • 1
    I experienced this too earlier today. Thought it was just a one-time glitch, but it looks like a real bug. Mar 11, 2020 at 11:06
  • No repro here on the "carpet cleaner" post -- downvote was instantaneous. Mar 11, 2020 at 11:12
  • 6
    It’s hit and miss but I noticed this yesterday.
    – Catija StaffMod
    Mar 11, 2020 at 12:02
  • I noticed the same thing on a Rude flag. Mar 11, 2020 at 12:57
  • Out of curiosity why bother with a down vote, why not just auto delete anything spam or rude?
    – Dan K
    Mar 11, 2020 at 15:38
  • 3
    @DanK It's to reduce visibility of spam posts by removing them from the homepage (questions scoring -4 or less don't show on the front page). Mar 11, 2020 at 15:46
  • @sonic the Anonymous Hedgehog but auto delete on set tags would do the same thing, surely it's better to delete spam and rude posts so it's not seen anywhere. The logic of hiding it from the homepage only makes no sense. Unless SE sites are partly relying on spam or rude posts to boost traffic I see no reason to keep such posts. Still out of curiosity I now understand why they down vote, just not the reasoning behind it.
    – Dan K
    Mar 11, 2020 at 15:51
  • @DanK - no-one wants to keep them. They get binned rapidly once the number of flags has been raised [some even automatically, but that's a story for another day]. It's accepted that a flag auto-generates a down vote too, to demonstrate the immediate unpopularity of the post, meaning it can take just 2 users to have it removed from the front page, even though it can take another 3 to wipe it off the face of the earth [it can take up to 5 independent users to finally remove it, this prevents one-man crusades]. You can't auto-delete certain tags - because spammers don't use the correct tags.
    – Tetsujin
    Mar 11, 2020 at 15:54
  • @DanK (cc: Tetsujin) It takes 6 red-flags (spam and/or rude/abusive, in any combination) for a post to be deleted automatically by the community user. A moderator can, of course, delete the post unilaterally. The intent is that 6 red-flags shows consensus that the post is a problem and should be deleted without the need for an actual moderator to review it. It wouldn't be appropriate for a post to be removed immediately just on the basis of a single person raising a single flag, because that's something that not only could be abused, but definitely would be abused.
    – Makyen
    Mar 11, 2020 at 16:13
  • @Makyen - sorry, thanks. 6 flags, thought it was 5. meta.stackexchange.com/questions/58032/… confirms.
    – Tetsujin
    Mar 11, 2020 at 16:16
  • 5
    I couldn't reproduce this, but I added some tests for auto-downvoting for spam and offensive flags just in case the issue pops up again Aug 11, 2020 at 14:59


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