I had noticed a decrease in flag weight of 583 to 560 something.I understand dismissed flags cost a flag weight decrease. And it is my assumption that the post flagged was altered from its previous state.

  • When the flag weight gained after the 500 mark increases asymptotically why does the dismissal not correspond to this ? It seems like for every 20 or so posts you flag correctly a few 2-3 dismissed flags result in the loss of the weight earned from flagging correctly flag weight.
  • When moderators dismiss flags do the look at the revision at which the flag was raised?

A link to A prior Topic Posted thanks to its OP Total +10.00 flag weight for 10 Good flags, but -10 flag weight for 1 Bad flag, That's unfair!

The title in this question is search friendly .

Why Should You care?

Flags just don't die out until dismissed

Hence the old flags to posts which were revised often have a good chance of being dismissed when the mod fails to look at which revision the flag was raised.

IMHO i personally read the question a lot of times /look for dupes and read the FAQ again before flagging. Its like you say unfair.. and demotivating..

This is probably the reason for a lot of questions on show which flags were dismissed or some indication this.

Update :

.Now The dismissed flags can bee seen

  • @Aditya, I don't think it is a dup, mine is a claim, your is a question :-)
    – YOU
    Apr 21, 2011 at 8:58
  • Honest question: who cares? Flag weight isn’t a trophy (since nobody but you can see it) and 500 should be more than enough, right? I have a flag weight of ~ 70 and I never use more than a few flags per day. Apr 21, 2011 at 9:08
  • 4
    @Konrad Rudolph: As of a couple of days ago, people can see your flag weight now: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/88089/…
    – forsvarir
    Apr 21, 2011 at 9:12
  • 2
    Well In the million odd people( nearly or so SO' wishes) in the community Not every one cares for the same thing.**Have you looked at the different types of badges we have?** Ever wonder why we have them? people have different ways of contributing positively towards the community. Some people want to troll/ rep whore/ gain rep through insane number of questions/ gain rep through catchy non -answers / Some want to contribute towards making the site a better place to gain real insight and helpful questions and answers. Why should any one care for any thing? its cos they do they are here.
    – Aditya P
    Apr 21, 2011 at 9:14
  • Where are you getting the "until bountied" thing? Bounties have no effect on flag dismissal.
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    Apr 21, 2011 at 11:13
  • @Grace i am unable to find the exact post/topic but it was mentioned along with and in relation to close votes cast on a bountied question.
    – Aditya P
    Apr 21, 2011 at 11:28
  • As a moderator having recently dealt with bounties, flags, and close votes, I can tell you with 100% certainty that bounties do not have any effect on your flag weight or our ability to dismiss flags. Bounty questions can't be closed, but that has no impact on flags for moderator attention.
    – Grace Note StaffMod
    Apr 21, 2011 at 12:27
  • @Grace thanks for clarifying that up
    – Aditya P
    Apr 21, 2011 at 12:33

4 Answers 4


Unfortunately, Yes!

For users with flag weight greater than 500, flag weight increases in a sub-linear fashion. This means that the increase per positively reviewed flag will be less than the above stated values and depends how far above 500 your flag weight is. The penalty for flagging incorrectly remains the same.

  • flags just don't die out until dismissed or until bountied . Hence the old flags to posts which were revised often have a good chance of being dismissed when the mod fails to look at which revision the flag was raised. IMHO i personally read the question a lot of times /look for dupes and read the faq again before flagging. Its like you say unfair.. and demotivating..
    – Aditya P
    Apr 21, 2011 at 9:04
  • 1
    It seems quite reasonable... If your flag weight is > 500, you're clearly flagging above average, the smaller increment for flagging correctly encourages you to think before you flag since the penalty is greater. If the penalty for flagging incorrectly was the same, there would be no reason for the increase not to always continue in 10s to an uncapped amount.
    – forsvarir
    Apr 21, 2011 at 9:07
  • @Aditya, True. You know, my flag was rejected on this linked post, and its finally got deleted, but my flag does not come back. Previously, I double think to flag or not to flag, but now I said myself, not to flag if I see something is wrong. I know I can't be correct 100% of times, but also moderators same.
    – YOU
    Apr 21, 2011 at 9:12

As mentioned in the other answers, you always receive a 10 point penalty when you flag incorrectly, no matter what your flag weight. The reason for this is related to the reason that flag weight exists to begin with, which is to provide a mechanism for ordering flags by "trustworthiness" in the moderator tools.

How is that the case? Well, by maintaining a constant penalty while decreasing the reward, it's possible to separate out the people who consistently produce reliable flags from those who simply produce reliable flags more than 50% of the time. This results in a stronger likelihood that the flags at the front of the list (those from the members with the highest flag weight) will be actionable, which is important for effective moderation.

At the user level, the difference in penalty and reward may come across as unfair, but that's because people tend to view it as an increased punishment mechanism for being wrong post 500 flag weight. To my knowledge though, it's not really intended that way. This feeling could probably be lessened to some degree by not showing the numeric flag weight value at all, but that's a separate discussion, and not something that I'd necessarily be in support of anyway.


Yes, dismissed flags are always -10 FW.

EDIT: You can see :

https://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/87732/total-10-00-flag-weight-for-10-good-flags-but-10-flag-weight-for-1-bad-flag-t that complains about this thing. (Duplicate for a part of your questions)

  • 1
    That cant be right ...
    – Aditya P
    Apr 21, 2011 at 8:48

When you are up over the 500 region, yes: a flag dismissed as invalid continues to give the same hit. Thoughts:

  • this is pretty much the only way you can distinguish between users with high flag-weight
  • a change in flag weight up at that end has virtually no impact on... anything! you still have a very high "bump" in terms of the queue, and you still have a ton of available flags

while I genuinely applaud people taking the time to help site quality with flagging, we don't really need to get overly obsessed with the flag-weight. Which is why we didn't display it for a while after it existed ;p Taking pride in the good flagging is great, but the problem is that a lot of these things tend to be a bit subjective.

  • "virtually no impact on ... anything" is not so true. "inform moderator flag count" decrease sometimes.
    – YOU
    Apr 29, 2011 at 8:35
  • @You - yes; from "lots" to "lots-1" Apr 29, 2011 at 9:35

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