In a question I posted I mentioned an example of how things work on SO and how I didn't understand how things work on this site, I was hoping someone would tell me the differences, or tell me maybe that I was wrong and things are not like that on SO. Or something along those lines. In any case it was merely informative, giving background about myself.

The first two comments I got were this: enter image description here

My questions was about comments so the question asking whether I had read other posts regarding that topic was helpful.

However the next comment simply stating "This is not Stack Overflow" seems rather chatty and not relevant. I just mentioned how I am used to SO to provide people information to help them understand me and where my confusion may come from. So, how stating that "this is not SO" in a loose comment like that helps in any way? I flagged the comment as no longer needed because from the definition I don't see how that comment adds anything to my post. Is not giving me advice on how to improve my question or anything: enter image description here

However the flag got declined, so when I thought I was getting the hang on how comments operate here (I have been reading many posts about comments), I think I lost it again.

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    Sorry about that, it looked like you were asking us to rehash a lot of conversations that had already been had and settled. Seemed more appropriate to direct you to read the aforementioned discussions than to have them all over again.
    – apaul
    Apr 10, 2018 at 0:29
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    @apaul O no, your comment was useful, I mean I had read already some posts about comments, but If I hadn't It would have been useful, because apparently comments here are a big deal, unlike SO, where I haven't seen so much discussion about them.
    – Mykazuki
    Apr 10, 2018 at 0:31

1 Answer 1


I handled (and declined) the flag, so I should explain a bit why I did it.

One point I'd like to make is that things are . . . a bit more lax on meta sites. After all, questions and answers here are often proper discussions, a bit different from the totally rigid restrictions used on the main site. Yes, they still have to be questions and answers - the same basic philosophy applies - and yes, comments still have to be productive and constructive, but we do allow people to push the envelope a bit. I know that's understandably a bit confusing; the question-and-answer model isn't fantastic for meta discussions, and so we have to adjust how we use it.

In this particular case, I declined the comment flag because I think the comment raises a good point (although it doesn't necessarily flesh it out). Interpersonal Skills Stack Exchange isn't Stack Overflow, and it never will be. Much of the Stack Exchange network's traffic comes through Stack Overflow, and so a lot of visitors to our site come from SO. A lot of them expect that things will be kind of like Stack Overflow, with fast-paced activity on threads and a lot of user activity.

The truth is, things are comparatively quiet here (well, we're still busy compared to some sites, both in terms of content, user base and overall moderation activity). Additionally, we have our own complex dynamics regarding how to make the site tick. We have more explicit policies about comments; we have rules on how to make a question subjective in the right way; we're very strict when it comes to what constitutes an answer and what constitutes a comment.

I hope people understand this. It's a problem I see on a lot of smaller sites (people having different expectations about how the site works), and it's maybe not something that's easily fixable. But at the end of the day, the important message from that comment rings true: This is not Stack Overflow.

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    Hi Thanks for answering me, It makes sense when you explain it, although is a bit confusing, I mean I am expecting that at some point all my comments with Catija will get deleted, but the chat with Catija was helpful, even if chatty. However simply stating like that person did "This is not SO" is antagonizing, If you read my question I mentioned SO, just to explain to what I am used to. It is clear already that I know this site is not SO, and in no place in my question I ask for this site to be like SO, how restating it helps?
    – Mykazuki
    Apr 10, 2018 at 0:05
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    @Mykazuki I'm assuming it was inspired by your phrase "In this context, I am more used to Stack Overflow, where whether for sheer volume or for some "cultural" reason they are not so aggressive with comments like in this site." - just to emphasize that, yeah, things are a bit different here. I don't think it was supposed to be antagonizing; I didn't read it that way.
    – HDE 226868
    Apr 10, 2018 at 0:15
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    So, maybe this is an English thing, but I read it similar to you telling me about something and you give as an example how things are done in your country and I answer you "This is not your country". Anyways I won't be flagging any more comments on meta to save moderation time. Thank you.
    – Mykazuki
    Apr 10, 2018 at 0:19

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