Parent question: Erasing comments for questionable reasons

I am trying to get a general policy. My initial concern was about comments to answers that asked for details and/or corrections, and were erased as soon as the answer was updated accordingly.

There are numerous comments all over SE that were asking for answers updates and were kept online even though the answer was updated. Personnally I think this is good for the question OP because this way they can keep track of answers evolution.

However, technically those comments are rendered useless by the updates. So they do fall under the flag category "no longer needed".

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Note that if you are concerned about keeping track of post evolution, the edit history is a great tool for that. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 17, 2019 at 14:47

1 Answer 1


Should we flag all comments that are no longer needed?


Comments are intended to ask for clarification and provide feedback to questions and answers; they are not intended to help anyone keep track of anything. Once those clarifications and feedback have been incorporated into the post, the comments should be deleted.

SE is a Q&A site, not a threaded forum: the flow when reading this site should be Question, Answer, done. We do not want to have threads that expect the reader to parse pages of back-and-forth to understand what's being asked, or read through reams of ancient debate to find out what the conclusion was. If the content of the comments has been incorporated into the post, the comments' purpose is fulfilled and they become pure noise, which dilutes the importance of other comments on that thread, or which keeps the reader around for longer than they need to.

As a first approach, comments on SE are second-class citizens and may be removed by moderators at any point. Some comments stick around because they provide lasting value, but that's not the case when they have been incorporated into the post.

If you find such comments, flag them as No Longer Needed.

  • 7
    $\begingroup$ Indeed, these kinds of flags are greatly appreciated by the moderators. (We might start to think differently if there are ever too many of them for us to handle, but right now we're nowhere close to that threshold.) $\endgroup$
    – David Z
    Commented Oct 17, 2019 at 11:05

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