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44

I've found the script quite useful in making sense of long comment threads that may include partially deleted conversations, like the one shown above. Yeah, that is useful - and that's why it was implemented, so that moderators could sort through these messes when necessary. There's a good argument to be made that 10k users should be able to get this ...


42

A sufficient number of flags (in proportion to the number of upvotes on the comment) will automatically delete a comment. The person listed in the "show deleted comments" tool as the deleter is simply the last person who flagged. Any other flaggers are not listed, which honestly I find to be a bit odd - honestly it should either be listed as "Community" so ...


41

The primary reason I delete comments is due to rude and abusive behavior. I'm not sure that I want everyone above a certain privilege level to see comments like that. Not only do those comments clutter up the post, they could also stir up trouble in the future. I've known good users who lost their temper and said things they've regretted in comments (I know ...


36

Moderators need to be able to see deleted comments so that they can respond to complaints and reconstruct arguments / detect trolling/harassment/rage-quitting. Sadly, all of this is common enough that it required additional tooling to support. Moderators don't actually need to be able to undelete comments... However, it makes comment moderation much, much ...


30

So this is a tough one. There are two issues here at play, highlighted by a comment made by Adam Rackis: Any hints of personality are being removed from Stack Overflow. This is sad. First, these "My eyes are bleeding" and "My head hurts reading your code" and "I want to poke my eyes out" type comments are all old and tired. Part of personality is coming ...


29

OK, looks like the hole has been plugged, so let me reveal how it worked. It really was pretty simple: just take the normal AJAX URL used to load "N more comments", e.g. https://stackoverflow.com/posts/11227809/comments and append the magic parameter ?includeDeleted=true, like this: https://stackoverflow.com/posts/11227809/comments?includeDeleted=true ...


26

My comments on my own question, when responding to a downvoter, were repeatedly deleted without anyone flagging them. How could this be, and who has the power to do so? Moderators do. Moderators, unlike yourself, can also see when someone has flagged a comment. So for instance, I can determine that you've had 10 offensive comment flags on that question so ...


26

I think so. Leaving around obsolete comments clutters the page, and these comments are no longer useful. What might be a good practice, in case you're worried about the fact that "author's thanks is now dangling," you should flag that comment as "obsolete," because that comment no longer serves a purpose, either. If you want to maintain a record of why ...


25

We fully support our elected moderators, but realize that all moderators (including and especially myself) are only human and sometimes we make the wrong call -- or we may not even agree amongst ourselves what the "correct" course of action even is. Moderation often requires making tough calls that won't make everyone happy no matter what you choose to do. ...


25

Diamond moderators (elected or appointed by SE) can see deleted comments. They are still hidden by default, a moderator has to explicitly go looking for them. Normal users, even with high reputation, cannot see deleted comments.


24

We need to see comments in case there are issues that arise, like rude or abusive behavior. Even though we can see them, we have to go through a little bit of a process to see them; it's not like when a question or answer is deleted. Comments are never shown 'inline' when they're deleted, they're only available through a separate menu. Comments are ...


23

The answer is that he had just enough socks to get it deleted w/o moderator involvement. We just tested this case on one of my comments on your question and it took exactly 3 flags for it to be autodeleted, and seeing as Sean seems to have 2 socks of Joe and John, it's fairly reasonable to assume that he could remove a comment that you made w/o any other ...


22

What are comments? Comments are temporary "Post-It" notes left on a question or answer. They can be up-voted (but not down-voted) and flagged, but do not generate reputation. There's no revision history, and when they are deleted they're gone for good. -- Source Comments are a light-weight way to attach information to a post. They can be and often are ...


22

Yes, this is normal and correct. As the Stack Exchange employee involved, I deleted the comments, as they were no longer relevant. I pointed out that a link to a post was incorrect. It was. I ended up searching the site the issue was appearing on and fixing the link to the post myself. Comments are not expected to be there for all eternity - we have ...


20

I wonder what the comments section is actually for. If it is not to have a meta-discussion of the question and/or response, what purpose does it have? The answer can be found here: https://stackoverflow.com/privileges/comment Comments are temporary "Post-It" notes left on a question or answer. They can be up-voted (but not down-voted) and flagged, but do ...


19

Well, these were the comments: Ctrl+c, ctrl+v. @Jaseem Maybe you should direct that question to the man with 20 Classes and 10 Activities... Quite clearly unconstructive. Can you really be so shocked that your comments were removed? Comments are third-class citizens in our system by design; they are little more than post-it notes on the units of real ...


19

It is still telling the truth. Chances of a comment being undeleted are pretty much nil. "Gone for good" drives home the point that you shouldn't cling onto them. That if it was golden material, it would be in an answer. Moderators aren't the only users with the ability to delete comments either. You can delete your own comment or gang up with other like ...


19

The ability to remove your own comments at any time is an important feature, and shouldn't be taken away. Many people use it to remove obsolete discussions without involving a moderator to do the cleanup. Also, hiding bad content is an explicit part of Stack Exchange's community philosophy anyway. We don't let it rot on the street to show everybody what a ...


17

I wasn't going to post anything, but Xeo's comment: @Robert: Well... if mods are already allowed to simply nuke the comments, why not preserve them and just remove the noise? made me change my mind. There's already a link for the users to move the comments into chat. So may I propose that, instead of deleting the comments in toto, the mods first move ...


17

This will be fixed in the next build, it'll no longer overwrite deletion dates/users if they already exist.


17

Looks like your comments were removed because they were flagged as 'rude/offensive' and a moderator agreed with the flag. Looking at them, I would have deleted them too. Comments are removed for a myriad of reasons: Obsolete Rude/Offensive Not Constructive Chatty It's Tuesday Spam The point is, Comments are meant to clarify posts, not to hold extended ...


17

I initially read the OP as asking for what comments a moderator will delete right away when the first flag on it appears. However, I misread the question, for he is actually asking about the specific magic words that are sometimes alluded to and which make one comment more easily flag-deleted than the next one. I provided a list, but did not probe them for ...


17

If you want to have a discussion about something, it belongs in chat, not in the comments section of a post. Comments are designed to be temporary and need to be reserved for very specific reasons including requesting clarification of the post or asking for greater detail. From the comment privilege page: When should I comment? You should submit a ...


16

I personally think that long comment threads should be moved to and continue in chat, which is designed to handle more informal discussions like these. Moderators do not currently have a way to migrate comments to chat easily, but that feature has been requested.


16

You can already do that, but it is a separate moderator tool at user profile -> mod -> info -> comments. You can see either all comments of that user there or only deleted ones.


16

From the small snippet of the comment, I surmise Clive is talking about someone's accept rate there. Comments can be flagged for moderator attention, but if enough flags accumulate, the last flag to tip the balance causes the comment to be deleted. For certain types of comment, the threshold is lowered; accept rate comments have a really low threshold: only ...


16

I delete possibly more comments on a daily basis than most moderators, so I'm going to talk a bit about my experience. Interpersonal Skills has a very strict comment policy - though, we're merely codifying and enforcing Stack Exchange policy regarding comments. As such, comments are flagged and removed at a rate of about 1000 per month. There's (at least) ...


15

No, there isn't. Moderators can see deleted comments, but regular users cannot. Since the comment was deleted, I don't think there's any need to respond to it either. I would just let it go. No good can come from responding to someone who's just being rude, no matter how polite and professional you are in response. Look on the bright side - the system ...


15

Some comments should stick around long-term. Others shouldn't. But one thing that's clear to me, from participating and moderating on a variety of sites, is that comment voting is a terrible basis for deciding. Humor gets votes. Snark gets votes. That doesn't mean it should live for years. On the other hand, links to related questions are generally of ...


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