Note, I do not have close-vote privileges, so instead I have to use flags. The flag menu has an explicit "this question should be closed" submenu.

I flagged this question for closure with the custom reason:

Close for future works? The answer is "no" right now, could be completely different (and obvious) next week.

This was declined with the message

flags should only be used to make moderators aware of content that requires their intervention

Surely that's wrong? If flags are not supposed to be used for closure, why is there a whole UI supporting it?

Why was this flag declined?

  • As this case seems to be about a specific question after clarification in the comments I've edited it to more reflect that.
    – TheLethalCarrot Mod
    Jul 1, 2019 at 10:38

2 Answers 2


I'm reasonably sure one cannot write an actual custom close reason before having close privileges.

When you get to 3k the dialog shows a new option in the "close as off-topic" submenu, saying "I'm voting to close this as off-topic because... (Enter text)". This leaves a comment with the text you wrote.

As shown in this screenshot (thanks Mith!), such an option is missing for <3kers:

close reasons on SFF

What I think happened is that you used a custom mod flag, which is technically not a close flag. Thus, the mod handling it may have rejected it as the valid flag would have been a close one, sending it to close queue, leaving it to be handled by the community - something that does not, especially, requires mod-only intervention.

But I'm not the mod who handled it, so that's just my best guess...

Note: this answer was written to respond to the first version of this meta question. As it was edited to tackle a specific main question, see TLC's answer for the future works thing.

  • But when selecting "flag" -> "should be closed..." -> "..." I thought that also went to the mod queue? Most of them end up with the "helpful" feedback - or is that automatic if the question is eventually closed?
    – OrangeDog
    Jul 1, 2019 at 10:43
  • 2
    @OrangeDog "flag" -> "should be closed..." -> "..." will send the question to the Close Vote queue and also a mod queue somewhere I believe after a period time potentially. Flagging as just "in need of moderator intervention" will only send it to the mod queue.
    – TheLethalCarrot Mod
    Jul 1, 2019 at 10:45
  • 2
    @OrangeDog I'm also not the mod who handled your flag, but this answer essentially nails it. If you flag using the designed process ("should be closed" -> "..."), then the post will enter the Close Votes review queue to be handled in the normal way; mods never see such flags. Using a custom mod flag is not only a waste of mod time (which doesn't matter too much, as we're not overwhelmed with flags like Stack Overflow), but also invites modhammering on posts which may not need it - most closures are handled by the community, and we only intervene in obvious cases or if the community's mishandled.
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Jul 1, 2019 at 15:38
  • If the close flag does exactly the same as a close vote, then why do <3k users not get the actual "close" link (but without the custom reason, whyever that is)? Is there an SE Meta about this?
    – OrangeDog
    Jul 1, 2019 at 16:05
  • @OrangeDog they don't do the exact same thing; one sends it to queue (flag), the other sends it to queue and casts a vote (vote). I suppose not showing the custom reason for <3kers might have to do something along the lines of "you'll get that when you're entirely trusted to vote" thing
    – Jenayah
    Jul 1, 2019 at 16:08
  • @Jenayah I guess so few people do what I did that it hasn't become an issue
    – OrangeDog
    Jul 1, 2019 at 16:12
  • Correction to my previous comment: in fact I was the mod who handled it, but I'd forgotten. (Since I've been off SE for several days and assumed this was about a very recent thing, I didn't click through to check. Sorry.)
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Jul 1, 2019 at 17:48
  • @OrangeDog When a 3k+ user votes to close, that puts the question 20% of the way to being closed. When a <3k user flags to close, the question may still never receive a close vote. (The rationale is that less active/high-rep users are less likely to know the site's scope and as such less likely to know which questions should or shouldn't be closed.)
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Jul 1, 2019 at 17:53

The flag was declined correctly because the post itself does not fall foul of the Future Works Policy as it is clearly asking about events that have already happened. It is not asking what will happen or the like.

Has the connection between these characters and this event been confirmed in Agents of SHIELD (so far)?

Not that I'm doubting it - it's just enough of a plot convenience to be true - but has any of the exposition we've seen so far explicitly confirmed this?

In this case it looks like the moderator chose the best canned decline reason to explain why they were declining the flag. Though I suppose "found no evidence to support this" or "please use standard flags" may have been better.

However, on reflection and looking at Jenayah's answer it looks like you accidentally used a custom mod flag as custom close reasons aren't supported for <3k users. Therefore, it was declined with the correct reason as it didn't require mod intervention and should have been flagged for closure through the normal process.

FWIW in this case you should have really flagged for closure with "Primarily opinion based" as that is the close reason that is used for the Future Works Policy.

  • 2
    The "please use standard flags" canned decline reason would've been my choice...
    – Mithical
    Jul 1, 2019 at 10:45

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