Now that I've hit 10k rep, I can see the "new posts by new users" page and I've noticed that a lot of answers are derivatives of:
I tried [other user]'s answer but it didn't work, what else can I try?
Thanks for all the help!
Has anybody fixed this yet?
IE, comments which were posted as answers mostly due to inexperience, by new users visiting the site for the first time. In most cases the user should have commented on either the original question or one of the answers, but can't due to lack of rep.
Are these good candidates for "flag for moderator attention"?
I mod-flag all answers that aren't actually answers, with a message like "question as answer", "comment as answer", etc. Unless they give 20k users the ability to delete answers, mods are the only people that can deal with it; I asked once if I was flagging too often and they didn't seem to have a problem with it. Some people flag those answers as spam instead (since six spam flags will delete an answer) -- don't do that. Leaving a comment is probably a good idea, but it happens so often I generally don't, I just figure people will work out on their own why their non-answer got deleted (assuming they even notice in the first place)
So, please use the new type of flag to alert moderators about answers such as these.
Note also that as these flags are tracked separately from "moderator attention" flags, this gives the team more information about what doesn't qualify as an answer. By using the new type of flag, you help to both (a) clean up questions, and (b) reduce the volume of these types of answers across the entire network!
Any situation that needs to be "corrected," but the community does not have the ability to fix, is good cause for flagging a moderator. Moderators are the "human exception handlers" of the system.
Certainly a users not knowing how to use the system (i.e. a post that should be a comment, inappropriate responses, etc) are good candidates. That is in contrast to your routine, traditional "bad posts" that I feel should be handled by the community.
Moderators are human exception handlers, there to deal with those (hopefully rare) exceptional conditions that should not normally happen, but when they do … — A Theory of Moderation
I often leave them a comment explaining why they shouldn't post such an answer, then guide them to the FAQ or other resource so they can better understand how SO works. I also flag it for the moderators with the message "Not a real answer". They seem to get taken care of (i.e. deleted) by a mod in a timely fashion, and I haven't had any mods complain to me about flag abuse.