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EDIT [4/21/14]: I'm bumping this to the top for our new moderators.

Possible duplicate of this question, but I see the problem persists, so let this be a friendly reminder.

Although the comment box clearly states avoid comments like "thanks", "+1", "me too", I see these comments are much more common in this site than on others.

Surely many of us have been guilty of this in the past, myself included, but come is it really necessary to state your agreement every time you see a good answer? That's what upvotes are for.

I'd like to appeal to the community, please restrain yourselves. These comments do not add value, and may even obscure others that do.

Finally, as this answer suggests, can we be more aggressive flagging non-constructive comments while at the same time avoid making them? What else could be done in order to get the point across? For example on SO the comment What have you tried? is being explicitly blocked, would it be wise to do the same? (yes that measure does sound more authoritarian than it should be, just to give an example)

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    A related answer I posted a few months ago: meta.workplace.stackexchange.com/a/1852/17 – Nicole Aug 8 '13 at 22:56
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    ...i'm going to point out that Abbie made that comment more than a YEAR ago, and almost exactly a year before your first linked question was posted. – acolyte Aug 12 '13 at 14:22
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    Good catch. Should start paying attention to detail. Damn! @acolyte – rath Aug 12 '13 at 15:11
  • :tips hat: no problem @rath – acolyte Aug 12 '13 at 19:09
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I don't see anything wrong with comments that highlight important points in a long answer. That comment makes me want to read the answer to see what the fuss is about. On the other hand, comments that do nothing more than say "+1 good answer" should just be flagged and removed.

I also edit out -1's from comments as the goal is to guide users not punish them, and rubbing their noses in the fact that we downvoted their post can drown out any helpful information the user receives that may help him or her improve the post.

Hope this helps!

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  • Then I guess +/-1 comments, for the sake of highlighting the up/downvote should be treated the same. I hadn't thought of the -1s. I started a mini-crusade after writing this question and found many comments that fell into the category you describe so yes, the line is a bit blurred but not that blurred. Cheers – rath Aug 8 '13 at 21:29
  • @rath keep in mind some of the comments might be from earlier, I try to flag spamlike comments when I see them (admittedly this feels like trying to empty the ocean with a bucket and I've been lax recently) – enderland Aug 8 '13 at 22:26
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    I agree. In addition, while I haven't seen this come up much on The Workplace, on some sites I've seen this type of comment from a known expert used to "endorse" an answer from a new/unknown user. It's still important to say why (not just "+1"), but consider that use case. – Monica Cellio Aug 9 '13 at 14:42
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    +1, good answer. – enderland Aug 9 '13 at 16:41
  • +1: Yep. Good answer. Let's put this baby to bed. – Jim G. Aug 10 '13 at 0:14
  • All right then. +1 – rath Aug 12 '13 at 15:14
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I agree that leaving comments that consist entirely of "+1 (padding to get to 15 characters)" on lots of posts is noise.

If a comment starts out "+1" and then elaborates or refines some particular point, I see that comment as valuable even though it started out with "+1". Ditto "-1".

There is one other category of "+1" comments that I tend to be more lenient with on other sites, and would like to know how this community feels about it (by votes or comments here): a comment that welcomes a new user. We do this on Mi Yodeya and I've seen that make a real difference in how people perceive the site. Note that this should be one comment per recipient, ideally on his first positive contribution; if someone else has already welcomed the new user you can just upvote that comment, and if this is the third good post from the same new user you don't need to keep it up.

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  • I agree its one thing to encourage a new user. It is another to add comment to an answer simply because you want credit for up-voting. Sometimes adding a +1 in front of a comment that suggests an improvement also tends to grease the wheels of change for the better. – IDrinkandIKnowThings Apr 22 '14 at 14:38
  • +1: Thanks for weighing in. Much appreciated. – Jim G. Apr 22 '14 at 17:48

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