In this question: Why did they build the Wall in the first place?

OP says

Given that dragonglass kills the Others wouldn't it be easier to equip armies with dragonglass weapons than build a Wall this massive?

and there was this answer:

The wall was built by the first men. The white walkers drove them south to settle the land of westros. The wall was built to keep those dangers from engulfing the whole continent.

But OP clearly said that those dangers can be defeated, thus there is no point in the Wall.

This answer doesn't answer the question at all.

It answers a question like

What is the point of the Wall?

But not a question like OP's which was

What is the point of the Wall since there is an alternative ?

I flagged this as 'not an answer' but my flag was

declined - flags should not be used to indicate technical inaccuracies, or an altogether wrong answer

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  • 2
    As someone who knows nothing about that universe, why isn't "built by the first men" an answer? Sounds like they didn't have access to those weapons. – Izkata Jul 1 '14 at 23:32
  • @Izkata That's compounded by the OP having a roughly equivalent answer which says it's to block threats from The North. – user1027 Jul 2 '14 at 0:11
  • @Izkata OP mentions that there is an alternative. If the answerer thought/knew that this wasn't one, he could mention it. Now he doesn't even try to answer about the alternative. – Shevliaskovic Jul 2 '14 at 7:23

First, some context:

The purpose of the "not an answer" flag is not to flag inaccurate answers (that's what downvotes are for), but to prevent comments disguised as answers.

This is obviously subjective, but you should downvote (or request clarification) if:

  1. The answer is inaccurate or wrong.
  2. It doesn't answer the question but something else, usually because the person answering misread or misunderstood the question.

You should flag as "not an answer" if:

  1. The "answer" should be a comment on the main question. Note this is independent of it being right or wrong.
  2. The "answer" is actually a comment on another poster's answer. Example: "the answer by XYZ is wrong because White Walkers are not undead, and furthermore (yadda, yadda)".

Given the above, the answer you flagged was actually an answer, even if an unhelpful one. You were right to downvote and comment "how is this an answer", because the author seems to have misunderstood the original question. But it's not a comment in disguise, and so it shouldn't be flagged.

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It looks like an answer to me, which is why I declined the flag. That the answer has no downvotes indicating that anyone thinks the answer is wrong, and that there are no comments indicating how it is wrong, make it seem pretty valid as an answer. If you don't think something is an answer, then downvote, add comments, and add more detail in your flags (flag-> select 'other'->type in a reason) so it's clear to anyone how it's not an answer.

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  • Should I re-flag it and explain the reason there? I explained here why this doesn't seem like an answer to me – Shevliaskovic Jul 2 '14 at 7:22
  • The answerer doesn't even mention the alternative OP asks about – Shevliaskovic Jul 2 '14 at 7:24
  • @Shevliaskovic This answer also doesn't mention the alternative...? – user1027 Jul 2 '14 at 16:22
  • it proves that there isn't an alternative – Shevliaskovic Jul 2 '14 at 16:23
  • Here it is: The Wall is ~300 miles long. So, to guard all that space without a 'barrier', you would need hundreds and thousands of warriors. Isn't this what OP mentioned? – Shevliaskovic Jul 2 '14 at 16:23
  • @Shevliaskovic That's not the alternative in the OP, it's dragonglass. – user1027 Jul 2 '14 at 17:07
  • Actually, it says to equip armies with dragonglass and I mention why armies aren't sufficient – Shevliaskovic Jul 2 '14 at 23:37

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