Quick Story: I've flagged some questions for closure and I've flagged some comments for deletion. Those questions were closed and those comments were deleted. But my flags were declined. Something doesn't add up.

Should I ask Meta.StackExchange?

  • 1
    Sometimes the mods accidentally decline flags. Maybe they can tell us if that happened.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Commented Jan 19, 2015 at 1:00
  • 2
    Have to wait for a mod to look and answer, but I believe when there are multiple, different flags, if the mod says helpful to one of them, the others will show as declined if they were flags for a different reason. e.g. if you flag as offensive and someone else flags for moderator attention then you might get yours declined because the other reason was chosen. Commented Jan 19, 2015 at 1:17
  • @Ward Oh interesting, I didn't know that.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Commented Jan 19, 2015 at 2:13

1 Answer 1


My comment on the question seems to be not quite right

Instead there is this Meta.SE post about why a flag can be marked as declined but the comment or post is still deleted/edited/closed:

Why does flag marking as helpful/declined not always correlate with moderator action?

A number of things can happen:

  • A mod might not agree with a close flag but 5 others might come along and vote to close
  • A mod might disagree with your flag reason, but still agree that the post or comment has issues and deal with it - it's important to flag correctly
  • 3 regular reviewers choosing do not close will also decline your flag, but again, others might come along later (or a mod) and close the question
  • A mod might click the wrong button when handling your flag - I've seen multiple questions on meta.SE about this. One or two accidentally declined flags aren't a big deal.
  • A mod can only accept or reject all the flags on a post at once, and if the mod doesn't want some of the flags to apply (e.g. posts marked and accepted as spam carry a penalty), they have to decline them all.

(I still think I've seen something like my comment on Meta.SE, but can't find it now.)

  • 1
    The last point is no longer true (recent software update fixed this) but the rest is about on point. I have been traveling and not handling flags for a couple weeks so don't know about specifics in this case but in general these things happen as you say.
    – Caleb
    Commented Jan 19, 2015 at 6:59

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