Deleting other users comments on flags that I have created

I’m not sure if this is an intended feature or not, so this is in the general category.

Why is it possible for me to delete other users comments on flags that I have created? If this is an intended feature, what is to stop people from abusing that?

If this isn’t intended, why is [delete] showing as an option?
image

5 Likes

Not sure - that does seem like it could be prone to abuse, and I can’t think of a good reason for the ability to exist.

I can verify that the options appear for me as well, though I hadn’t noticed them before.

Does the function actually work? I haven’t tried (since I don’t want to delete any legit comments). Here’s an old flag of mine though: https://www.inaturalist.org/flags/321647
if @plantman4 or anyone else wants to make a test comment, I’ll see if I can actually delete it.

2 Likes

I made a comment.

2 Likes

Off topic and not, is flagging a recommended way of addressing duplicate observations?

3 Likes

@richyfourtytwo and @rupertclayton I was able to delete both your comments. I just got the usual “are you sure you want to do this” pop up.

@andrewtree Good question. Flagging was a way to address duplicates in the past, but definitely is no longer supported.
“If you come across a duplicate observation, please do not flag it or identify it differently. If you want to identify it, add an identification to the most accurate level you can and include a polite comment explaining to the observer that they should make one observation per encounter with an organism and, if possible, remove extraneous observations.”
See https://www.inaturalist.org/pages/help#duplicates

That said, older flags from back when this was ok are still left unresolved intentionally:
“We typically leave the following types of flags left unresolved: true spam flags, photos flagged for copyright infringement, and duplicate observations.”
https://www.inaturalist.org/pages/curator+guide

So since this flag wouldn’t really matter much now, it seemed like a good target to play with!

2 Likes

Hmm, curators should only be able to hide the comments, I believe. Seems like a bug.

4 Likes

Should I change this to a bug report then?

2 Likes

I don’t think this is good, rule breaking comments can be hidden, which leaves a record and the ability to reverse the hiding, but deletions other than hiding serve no purpose and are prone to abuse, so I hope this gets fixed. As a curator myself I do not need or want this power

4 Likes

Made a Github issue here: https://github.com/inaturalist/inaturalist/issues/4121

4 Likes