In this answer the author says: "I don't have enough rep to comment on your question so I had to post as an answer."

The description text for the flag "not an answer" says: "This was posted as an answer, but it does not attempt to answer the question. It should possibly be an edit, a comment, another question, or deleted altogether."

I understand the authors intention was to post a comment and I know that moderators can turn answers into comments. I think the description for the "not an answer flag" is applicable ("it should possibly be a comment") and so I've flagged it as "not an answer". Surprisingly my flag was "declined - a moderator reviewed your flag, but found no evidence to support it".

Isn't the intention of the author (he just wanted to comment but has not enough reputation) sufficient "evidence" to make this answer a comment?

2 Answers 2


Although the author says that it should be a comment, what they wrote isn't actually something that would need to be posted as a comment.

Comments here are primarily for requesting clarification or suggesting improvements to a post. They aren't really intended for discussion, half-answers, related anecdotes, or just as a space for anything that's not an answer.

The answer you linked to isn't requesting clarification, so it something that needs to be converted to a comment (it is also too long, at 891 characters, so would have to be broken into multiple comments which is particularly awkward with the mod tools).

The way I read the answer, it says:

I had a similar problem, in which I concluded the Pi was broken. The solution was to buy another.

That clearly is an attempt to provide an answer. It might be wrong, or even irrelevant, but that doesn't make it "not an answer", because it doesn't fit:

This was posted as an answer, but it does not attempt to answer the question. It should possibly be an edit, a comment, another question, or deleted altogether.

Essentially, anything that is an attempt to answer the question should be posted as an answer—not as a comment. Even incorrect answers are generally not deleted or converted to a comment by moderators.

If a post is converted to a comment, there's no way for everyone else to vote on it (up or down), so instead the information gets pinned above the "proper" answers. The system is really designed so that comments just request clarification and other minor critiques, and answers act as the primary vehicle of helping people.

  • 2
    Though I did not handle that flag I tend to agree with your statement that it in fact is not a comment.
    – Ghanima Mod
    Jun 12, 2018 at 14:37

I'm the mod that rejected your flag.

I believe that the author made the comment remark because they couldn't provide what they felt was a definitive answer. Regardless of that possible opinion, the reply is in fact a valid answer. I'm not going to rehash all of @Aurora0001's points, but his answer summarizes my feelings on the matter fairly well.

Don't worry though. There's absolutely nothing wrong with having a few declined flags on your account. It doesn't impact you in any negative way, and we'll contact you privately if there is ever the possibility of it becoming a problem. :)

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