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Suppose I find something that needs flagging for two different reasons, and only one is covered by the automated messages.

Common cases of this include:

  • Someone posts an "answer" saying "the person asking this question is attempting to cheat on my exam." Then I want to flag this as not an answer and also bring the cheating accusation to the attention of the moderators.
  • A popular old question picks up a non-answer (or more than one), so I want to suggest that it be protected as well as flagging as not-an-answer.

Is it better to do this via a single custom flag (so I'm only attracting attention to the question once), or by two flags (to offload some work from moderators onto 10k+ users)?

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As a general guideline, I would flag each post only once. But I would flag an answer and a question separately and not in a combined flag. The flag should be attached to the post it applies to, else it can get more confusing.

There are some reasons to prefer the predefined flags, one of them is that if the community handles them e.g. by closing the question or deleting the post, they are automatically dismissed.

I personally would never flag to suggest to protect a question, once three answers from new users are deleted the question is automatically protected. But that is a personal preference, and I know that other users disagree on when to protect.

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