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One of the recurring things on the main site is comments about the content of a question or an answer.

Once the question/answer is edited to reflect these comments, they are often rendered obsolete. When this happens, I've understood that one should feel free to flag the comments as such.

Now my question pertains to the procedure to follow in flagging such comments:

Suppose there is a string of comments (usually between the first commenter and OP) that is rendered obsolete by an edit.

Should one flag all comments for obsolescence, or will it suffice to flag only the top one, trusting that the reviewers of this queue (not sure if these are only moderators) will read the relevant thread and take care of the other obsolete comments in one sweep?

Until now, I have usually flagged only the top comments of such strings, thinking that it may be better to have only one flag for what is essentially one issue.

I would like to receive some input on this by the comment flag reviewers.

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Let me answer the question, since

the reviewers of this queue

who can do anything about the obsolete comments include only the moderators. (10 or 20K do not get the privilege to delete other people's comments.)

I would prefer you either flag one or flag them all. Don't just flag three out of five or something like that.

  • If I see one obsolete flag, I will generally open the thread and scan through it (unless it is one of those monster threads with tens of comments) to

    1. Check that the comment is indeed obsolete
    2. Look for any comments that are dependent on that obsolete comment

    and delete them all.

  • If I see multiple obsolete flags, I will assume the flagger did step 2 from the above for me. Yes, that is lazy of me, but I developed this habit based on our flagging history. That is to say, most people who flag obsolete comments flag either just one or all the ones in the entire thread.

If the comment thread is short, I don't see any reason for me to prefer you do one or the other. But if the comment thread is very long, I would appreciate it greatly if you flag all the comments to save us some time.


Note: other mods may act differently.

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    $\begingroup$ I can confirm that this is also what I've started doing. $\endgroup$ – Alex Becker May 27 '13 at 14:44

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