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Some users (usually new ones) will see an answer to a question similar to one that they have recently asked, then leave a comment along the lines of

'Please look at my question . . .'

Are such comments acceptable? I can imagine that in some instances, this may be an effective way to get a difficult question answered by one of a small number of users with the necessary knowledge to do so. However, most of the instances that I have encountered do not fall into this category. If such comments aren't welcome, what is the best way to deal with them?

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  • $\begingroup$ If you think the question's a good one, leave a comment encouraging the person to post it as a new question. $\endgroup$ – Gerry Myerson Jun 19 '14 at 13:07
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    $\begingroup$ @GerryMyerson: Maybe I wasn't clear. I am referring to the following situation: I ask a question about number theory, then I continue to enjoy the many questions and answers of this site. In doing so, I come across one of your many answers to a number theory question. As your answer is accepted, has lots of votes, and you have lots of reputation, I'm pretty sure you will be able to help me with my number theory question. So I leave a comment on the answer inviting you to take a look at the question I just asked. $\endgroup$ – Michael Albanese Jun 19 '14 at 13:30
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    $\begingroup$ I think these can be OK as long as the person asking uses them very sparingly. Of course, the person who is asked has no obligation to respond - maybe they are busy, or tired, or just don't feel like answering. $\endgroup$ – Carl Mummert Jun 19 '14 at 14:31
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks for the clarification --- I had thought the question in question was being posed in the comment, which is something I have seen happen on occasion. Now I understand you are asking about a situation in which the commenter is trying to draw attention to a question the commenter has already posted as a question. $\endgroup$ – Gerry Myerson Jun 19 '14 at 23:25
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    $\begingroup$ I've received a few of these comments and I don't really mind them. In fact I kind of like the effect of being introduced to other questions on the site that I may enjoy answering. I probably wouldn't enjoy being flooded with them, though. $\endgroup$ – Antonio Vargas Jun 20 '14 at 0:11
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It's almost certainly best to flag such comments. The ♦-moderators can remove them if they're deemed to be noise (which in the vast majority of cases they probably are). And for particularly insistent users, we may feel it necessary to explain to them proper site etiquette.

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  • $\begingroup$ What is the appropriate flagging option? $\endgroup$ – Michael Albanese Jun 19 '14 at 22:50
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    $\begingroup$ @MichaelAlbanese: I would go with either "not constructive" or a custom flag to the effect of "user is asking for help on a different question". $\endgroup$ – user642796 Jun 20 '14 at 3:17

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