173

I don't totally agree on your statement that a single sentence with a link to another resource is an answer in most cases. When the questions are lacking any effort I agree this could be a decent answer, but probably it is better to close the question anyway. In my opinion an answer must qualify to the same rule as questions do: Answers need to have ...


104

I'm assuming that's not what "abusive" in this reason is referring to Abusive means what it says. Don't overthink this. Look... The problem folks have with these is that they see the pile of nonsense and try to extract meaning from it. "Surely if I can determine what the author's intent was," you might imagine them saying to themselves, "...I can then pick ...


68

Strip the markup We could experiment with disabling link markup and hiding clickable URLs in new answers during the 5-minute grace period, then enabling them again after the grace period (to prevent ninja edits and whatnot from circumventing that). If in the first 5 minutes you cannot tell the gist of an answer because there are no functioning links or ...


42

I think Mike's answer misses the mark because people don't read instructions. The issue with adding a little phrase to the end of the existing text is that the people doing this regularly already have this behavior ingrained, and probably won't re-read the instructions. This means it will prevent the growth of these flags, but not solve the existing issue. ...


35

What is the not an answer flag? The not an answer flag (NAA) is a flag to indicate that someone used the "answer the question" box to post something that isn't really an answer. It usually pushes an answer to the low-quality queue, where its fate is decided by reviewers. If it stays there for too long, the answer is also shown to diamond moderators ...


35

The flagging queue is pretty empty today. I suspect the hats. There's at least 2 hats you can get by flagging. And this post stayed in the queue pretty long for some reason (maybe because it was disputed). And the post almost looked like not-an-answer. Perfect feast for our robo-flaggers hungry for more hats.


26

They still aren't answers, since they don't make any attempt at answering the original question. They should be flagged as such.


21

I wrote that post - and threw together that collage - to try to establish a shared baseline understanding for answer flagging, a set of things that hopefully we could all agree on. Because... Of course there are a great many things that we won't all agree on. Some sites have extremely strict standards for answers; others allow questions that are almost ...


19

If that's all your answer contained...yes. There's a close vote reason to the tune of, "Needs more focus" which covers this exact case. If you want to commentate on a question's topicality, flagging/voting for closure is the best way to do it.


18

Humor and silliness are more welcome on meta than main, but posts that don't even attempt to answer the question aren't answers. This one is blatant; it ignores the question and responds to the unrelated text of a now-ended bounty. That answer is not making the site even a little better. Because it is upvoted, users with the "trusted user" privilege cannot ...


17

First of all... This isn't a "Stack Overflow vs. The Network" issue. Yes, Stack Overflow gets a tremendous number of non-answers, and associated flags, and has to handle them efficiently somehow... ...But so does Super User. So does Ask Ubuntu. So do Web Apps, Electrical Engineering, Arqade... Any site that has (or appears to have) popular appeal and ...


16

That looks like a probable mis-click by the mod who declined the flag. That's definitely a request for feedback, so your flags were correct. I converted that answer to a comment. Sorry about the mix-up.


14

This was completely my mistake. I was trying to clear flags while my code was compiling, and I was probably going faster than I should. You are correct, that is not an answer, and careful me would have deleted the answer. Quick explanation of my thought process: I read - I've found another way for this And assumed the following text was explaining ...


14

When you see a request for clarification posted as an answer, flag it as "Not an answer", because it's not an answer. It is likely to be deleted by a mod rather quickly. If you feel that an answer is not helpful, say because it is abusing the answer feature to post non-answers, you are free to downvote said answer and/or comment on the answer (politely, ...


14

It is an attempt to answer the question. The author of that answer thought that he was answering the question. If that's the case, then NAA generally doesn't apply. It may be a poor answer, perhaps even Very Low Quality, to the point that it should be deleted, but it's not Not an Answer. (That said, what to do with link only answers is generally a ...


14

Note that these flags do not enter the moderator flag queue immediately: This delay gives the community a chance to handle these flags first. If that doesn't happen, or if it can't happen, then it is made available to moderators for resolution. Keep in mind, not all posts can be processed via review, and when a post is processed through review but ...


14

Don't do that is perfectly fine as an answer (on the majority of sites) to questions that ask How do I. specially if it is a valid answer. It might help a bit if the advice comes with some explanation or citation so future visitors understand why somethings shouldn't be done. So yeah, totally fine and acceptable on any site. If it is the most ...


14

If you were "saying so" in the answer box rather than by using a close vote or close flag, yes it should.


13

If I had handled that flag, I would have certainly converted it to a comment. Restarting an application is the first thing to do whenever something goes wrong. It's troubleshooting 101 and as an answer it is way too generic. It's the type of "answer" you can put below every problem with an application and it will never be "wrong", because it's the ...


13

Strictly speaking, this auto-comment from the LQP review queue is inappropriate. This is an answer, it just doesn't have a lot of detail to it. It's so sparse, in fact, that it fits the sloppy pattern a lot of users have of answering trivially in comments … and a comment isn't an answer, so they assume it should be flagged accordingly. There's no ...


13

There's nothing stopping you from asking a question and referencing the original question in it while describing how your question differs from that. That's not only a valid question but it shows research. One of the reasons to downvote is asking a question that shows no research and so you're already on track to avoid that fate. In fact better than that, ...


12

An answer is meant to provide a solution to a problem. The trick is identifying the actual problem which doesn't necessarily mean that the problem is the code; it might very well be the approach. By providing a better approach to the same underlying problem you will have cleared up the problem and it will probably be very useful for future readers, which ...


12

This string has been updated with details about the Follow feature. Thanks for the suggestion! The fix will be merged in today or tomorrow.


11

Let us see what the rude or abusive flag means. A reasonable person would find this content inappropriate for respectful discourse. I think that agpyeghrujdsg is inappropriate discourse in general (at least I would not start a conversation about it), so it is also inappropriate for respectful discourse. Hence this flag can be used for such answer. ...


11

I think self-handling of posts you have flagged defeats the entire purpose of the review queue, no matter how short-supplied the site is. Maybe there is another way around, and that is that flags should contribute to the end result of the review. If, lets say, 10 people flagged an answer as NAA, why is it still going through the queue? Isn't the general ...


10

Moderators don't act on a single flag, they act on all flags raised for that post at the same time. My guess is someone else flagged it as spam/offensive/etc. and it was more important to decline their flag than to accept yours. That, or the occasional fat finger. It happens. Move on, there are more important things than flag weight. You know the post ...


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