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A couple of days I flagged a question because it was an almost exact duplicate of another - and my "vote to close" was not accepted because the "other" so-called duplicate had not received an up-vote. Since I couldn't vote to close it, I flagged it. I mean, this was a clear cross-post.

The post was clearly a copy-and-paste by the same guy, who had made two accounts with similar names. (He claimed he couldn't log into one of them).

The response to my flag was "declined - flags should only be used to make moderators aware of content that requires their intervention". Well, I don't know how else to deal with a cross-post if the system doesn't let me "vote to close it".

Then the thread was in fact closed by a moderator:

This question is an exact duplicate of:

Consulting and inserting a string into an array if it doesn't exist (Arduino IDE)

So why do I get the flag declined: "flags should only be used to make moderators aware of content that requires their intervention" - when in fact the moderator did intervene?

Now when I go to flag other things I get this message about how my other flags were declined, and maybe I should rethink things before I do any more flagging.

  • I've forgotten about that stipulation but I think there is a way to do it without a moderator. Let me do some digging. – Anonymous Penguin Sep 15 '15 at 1:54
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because the "other" so-called duplicate had not received an up-vote

It's not the question that needs an upvote, it needs an upvoted or accepted answer.

This isn't meant to need random upvotes to close a question, but rather to make sure they both have a real answer before closing (I presume it is to prevent similar questions being closed that may appear duplicates on first glance that are slightly different).

The post was clearly a copy-and-paste by the same guy, who had made two accounts with similar names. (He claimed he couldn't log into one of them).

To be honest, I forgot about this (newer) rule when I declined your post. From some digging on SE meta, it seems as it would've allowed you to close it if it was the same account.

If it wasn't by the same author, the best route would've been to let it wait until one of them got an answer.

Then the thread was in fact closed by a moderator:

So why do I get the flag declined: "flags should only be used to make moderators aware of content that requires their intervention" - when in fact the moderator did intervene?

This decline reason is for cases when a user who is not a moderator can do the action. That does not mean that, since the moderator already saw the instance, that they can't act upon it. It's designed as a nudge to say, "Hey! You don't need me to do that. Let someone else with rep who isn't a mod handle that instead."

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    Thanks for the clarification, but it seems odd that no-one can vote to close a duplicated question. I mean, answering one of them just rewards the cross-poster (whichever one you answer). This decline reason is for cases when a user who is not a moderator can do the action. - maybe I didn't read it properly, but as far as I could see I was powerless to do anything except flag for moderator intervention. And thus, neither could anyone else. – Nick Gammon Sep 15 '15 at 2:25
  • This is not a resolution to the problem. If the original question has no answers worthy of an upvote, then a user cannot close the question without moderator assistance. People should not upvote undeserving answers just to be able to close a duplicate question. – Chris Stratton Nov 26 '15 at 1:01
  • @ChrisStratton I agree—I never said otherwise. I updated my answer – Anonymous Penguin Nov 26 '15 at 1:32

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