What about malicious edits?
At first this appears to be potentially a bad mechanic. An offensive edit would cause the OP to get punished with automatic rep loss. If the community isn't paying attention they could flag spam and cause unwarranted damage to the first revision owner.
There are ways to counter this. Before it reaches 6 flags, an editor could revert the edit and the flags would be revoked. However, if the 6 flags occur fast, or a mod flags, there's no chance to intervene.
The reasoning is in how edits can occur.
- If an edit is by the first revision owner, the content is their responsibility.
- If an edit is by a low rep member, the edit must be approved.
- If an edit is by a high rep member, they have some trust with the community and likely shouldn't behave in this way.
Any outliers to the above can be corrected and revoked by moderation.
Why not assign flags to the current revision owner?
Going with the above understanding, an editor is trusted. Likely they are trying to improve the post. So if they fail to completely improve the post and leave behind overlooked offensive material, they would incur the penalty in the suggested alternative system.
Possible real scenarios
It is still likely for offensive material to get placed in an edit.
Considering the poor performance of reviewers quickly approving edits. It is possible that a malicious edit carefully hidden from first glance can be unintentionally approved. Resulting in the above problem.
- Be careful when you assign flags. If you see an edit, check the revision history and rollback if the previous revision is not offensive.
- Be careful when you approve edits. Ensure there's no offensive material, new or not. If there is, take the opportunity to improve the edit and remove the offensive material entirely.
- Be careful when you edit. Ensure that you've removed the offensive material.
If these suggestions are followed, we can avoid misdirected punishment and save correction efforts by moderation.