Proposal: Make the abuse flag descriptions include system abuse (ex. gibberish), and link to the spam/abuse flag FAQ post.

This would be for both the post flags (rude/abusive), and comment flags (harassment/bigotry/abuse).

In the FAQ post on spam/abuse flagging, it says:

Abuse of the system or community is everything that is created with the intention to harm them. This includes posts by new users that contain no useful content at all – i.e. gibberish posts along the lines of:


Currently, on Stack Overflow (just for the sake of an example with actual links), the comment flag description says:

It contains harassment, bigotry, or abuse.
This comment attacks a person or group. Learn more in our Code of Conduct.

and the post flag description says:

rude or abusive
A reasonable person would find this content inappropriate for respectful discourse.

I think this is important, since I personally find the FAQ posts to not be very discoverable. When I started actively contributing, I didn't know they existed until I really went looking for them. It would be a shame if many people didn't flag things that should be flagged just because they didn't know certain things qualified to be flagged for existing flag reasons.

  • 2
    Related (in that the updated messaging for the R/A flag in this request includes what you would want): Flag window redux: proposed syntax
    – Spevacus
    Nov 23, 2022 at 3:31
  • @Spevacus I didn't know about that one! I wouldn't be very opposed to my post here getting marked as a duplicate. But I also think there's value in my request's very small scope (less work -> more likely to happen?) oh wait- that one is already status-review... Nov 23, 2022 at 3:41
  • @starball [status-review] doesn't mean that the request will get implemented. It's often not even added by staff, but by moderators. When mods add a [status-review] tag to a question, it creates an internal ticket for the staff. That's about it. I would say this question is not a duplicate of the linked one (which is likely why Spevacus indicated that it just "related").
    – 41686d6564
    Nov 23, 2022 at 4:15
  • 1
    Indeed. The tag wiki for it's a bit out of date, but here's the post describing the relevant process: What posts should be escalated to staff using [status-review], and how do I escalate them?
    – V2Blast
    Nov 23, 2022 at 5:26
  • 2
    FWIW, the help center for "flag posts" privilege already links there (but who reads the help center anyway...). Nov 23, 2022 at 15:56
  • 2
    @V2Blast I tried to update the wiki and excerpt a while ago, but was rejected.
    – pppery
    Nov 24, 2022 at 16:54
  • 2
    I am concerned about what text would be used in the flagging dialogs for this proposed change. When it's appropriate to use R/A flags for things that are "abuse of the system" is notably more complex than just "flag everything" that looks like the user is abusing the system. It's specifically only to be used for new users who don't have other contributions, and only for things which are complete gibberish, without other redeeming content. While that could be communicated in the flagging dialog, it's quite a bit more nuanced than what's generally described there.
    – Makyen
    Nov 25, 2022 at 19:33


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