Sometimes I feel I should no flag newbies or new users. Should I comment instead and ask them to explain better? ...or should I leave this to the moderators?

2 Answers 2


Everyone is encouraged to help newbies get their sea-legs on the SE sites. I would comment and/or as needed to improve posts. This is especially important when it is apparent that English isn't the posters first language.

  • but should I flag them? or give them the chance to redo the question or answer before flag them?
    – cayerdis
    Nov 13, 2012 at 19:28
  • 2
    In general, flags should be reserved for something that only a moderator can handle, which is typically converting an answer to a comment (not an answer flag), immediate closing (eg, off-topic flags), or immediate deletion (eg, spam). If I see another user trying to help out a newbie, and it looks like the post can be salvaged, I will delay acting on it.
    – mpdonadio Mod
    Nov 14, 2012 at 13:32

If you find a post that needs to be flagged, flag it independently from who posted it. Whatever the post was created from a new user, or from a 10K user, a post that should be flagged still needs to be flagged.

As for leaving that to moderators, moderators don't go hunting for bad posts; they just act on posts that caught their attention in some way (such as when a post is flagged), or on posts that are blatantly wrongs, such as blatantly off-topic questions.

There are cases where a flag should not be used, such as for:

  • Asking a moderator to judge the correctness of an answer
  • Asking a moderator to edit a post, if not in the case sensible information is revealed
  • Asking a moderator to down-vote a post
  • Asking a moderator to change a comment into an answer

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