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Every so often, an answer like this shows up in the low-quality review queue (that one showed up today for me). When it does, we are presented with the familiar choices: "Looks OK", "Edit", "Recommend Deletion", and "Skip". Now as per a previous meta discussion, questions like this shouldn't be deleted since they don't meet that criteria. The post itself is an attempt at an answer, but in general, it can be unclear, wrong, too short, or horribly written.

Sure, I can downvote it and maybe leave a comment if I'm able, but that doesn't remove it from my review queue. I refuse to hit "Looks OK" because let's face it, there are posts like this that simply do not look OK. If I knew what the poster was trying to say, I'd consider editing it, but sometimes you know they are "answering" the question but you're just not sure what they're trying to say or you know it's completely wrong. So no hitting "Edit". We already vetoed "Recommend Deletion". So all I have left is "Skip". I can always hit the "Skip" button, let someone else worry about it. But there are times when a post is really bad and you want to do something about it, not just pass it off to someone else.

So I'd like to open up the floor to discussion. What does everyone else do when faced with a truly low-quality post that can't be edited or deleted? And feel free to suggest new features for the low-quality review stack too; those are always fun to consider. Just remember that if you do and people start to think it's a good idea, Shog9 will quickly come here to tell us all exactly why the current low-quality review setup is the smartest and most effective design we could have.

As an addendum after having read a couple of answers to this, everyone go to an answer you know of with zero or less up-votes and hit the flag button. Notice it has the "very low quality" flag option that says "This answer has severe formatting or content problems. This answer is unlikely to be salvageable through editing, and might need to be removed."

Now supposedly, one could flag an answer with that and (if I'm not mistaken) that sends it to the LQ review queue. That's one of the reasons why if I see a post that is technically an answer but I can't see a way of saving it through edits, I hesitate to hit the "Looks OK" option. An answer might fulfill the requirements of using that flag option but then also be marked as "OK" by the queue reviewers. 20 goto 10

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    $\begingroup$ Here's an interesting twist to consider: enough "Looks OK" votes remove the question from the queue, whereas selecting "Skip" means even more people will see the post and presumably downvote. So if one interprets the LQ queue's purpose as, at least in part, seeking evaluation of quality from experienced users, "Looks OK" subverts that purpose not just in name but also functionality. $\endgroup$ – user10851 Jul 28 '14 at 18:55
  • $\begingroup$ @ChrisWhite Good point. This is exactly why I wanted to have the discussion. $\endgroup$ – Jim Jul 28 '14 at 19:06
  • $\begingroup$ This issue (or a closely related one), about the meaning of "Looks OK," was also brought up on meta.SE. $\endgroup$ – David Z Jul 29 '14 at 18:13
  • $\begingroup$ I raised a similar issue on English Language Learners meta. It has always seemed strange to me to have this disjunction between options for flagging and reasons for deletion. $\endgroup$ – Tyler James Young Jul 31 '14 at 17:14
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My checklist that I try following:

  1. Do I understand the original question?
    1. No? Select Skip.
    2. Yes? Downvote.
  2. Comments exist already?
    1. No?
      • Can I guide the poster to a more-correct answer?
        1. Yes? Do so, then select Looks OK
        2. No? Select Skip
    2. Yes?
      • Does the comment explain the error?
        1. Yes? Select Looks OK.
        2. No? Explain why it's wrong, select Looks OK.

The Looks OK button is the appropriate response for incorrect answers.

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  • $\begingroup$ oh definitely. If an answer is completely wrong but understandable and answers the question, I always hit looks OK. Quality and accuracy are two different things to me. But what if you understand the question and you think the answer might be on the right track but you really have no idea what to do or say in a comment? $\endgroup$ – Jim Jul 28 '14 at 15:14
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    $\begingroup$ If I can't think of what to say in the comment, I click Skip. $\endgroup$ – Kyle Kanos Jul 28 '14 at 15:16
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I feel your pain.

But, formally, "Looks OK" is the only way to go. It is an attempt to answer the question. Perhaps it's horrible, not useful, confused or whatever else, but it is a valid, if ugly, contribution. The best course of action is: Downvote it into oblivion. (then hit "Looks OK", feeling slightly guilty)

A button expressing something like "Not OK, but not suited for deletion either" would not convey useful information, in my opinion. Either it should be deleted, or it is fit to remain on the site. Attempts to answer are not fit for deletion as per the meta post you linked, so they are OK in the sense of the review queue. Sometimes we have to supress our aesthetical opinions and suffer the cognitive dissonance of hitting "Looks OK" that we personally would never really call OK.

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    $\begingroup$ So a button that does exactly the same thing as "Looks OK" but is labelled as "Meh, it can stay, I guess" $\endgroup$ – Jim Jul 28 '14 at 15:02
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    $\begingroup$ @Jim I interpret the 'Looks OK' button in the sense 'this post uses intelligible words, and attempts to answer the question'. This is very distinct from 'I would upvote this post'. $\endgroup$ – Kyle Oman Jul 28 '14 at 18:14
  • $\begingroup$ Another reasonable button would combine the downvote with the removal from LQ. Perhaps we can name the button just "Wrong Answer". $\endgroup$ – MSalters Jul 31 '14 at 8:54

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