Well, most insect people focus on specific taxa, so it is generally more effective to ID insects at least to order when possible. The bug and beetle experts, as a rule, aren’t going to be looking for observations in Pterygota.
There are people who specifically work on sorting observations that have ended up in Pterygota for one reason or another – larvae tend to cause confusion, for example, as do less familiar orders like Trichoptera – however, they’re not necessarily the experts who can narrow the ID further. So if you (generic “you”) do have a basic grasp of insect orders, applying that knowledge will help get the observation seen by experts more quickly.
Being aware of what you don’t know is a good skill to have, though. I’ve found that the times where I reach too far beyond my area of minimum competence are generally the ones I end up regretting. IDing to the lowest level you are confident about is a good rule of thumb to minimize errors, though it of course won’t eliminate all mistakes. I’ll reiterate that it’s also fine to skip observations where you don’t feel like you can help/contribute anything useful.
If this is a response to my comments in the other thread, honest mistakes are not an issue; they are part of the learning process – as long as people read their notifications and withdraw if needed. I put an appropriate ID on the bee mimics and hand them over to the fly people, tagging them when needed, and they do the reverse for the bees that end up in their pile.
I do get somewhat annoyed, if you will, by IDs that seem to have been made without thought – e.g., where it is obvious that the user just accepted one of the CV suggestions without even looking to see whether the suggestion made sense or looked like the organism they observed. This annoyance does not directly correlate with the correctness of the ID or rather lack thereof. I am equally unenthusiastic about rapid agreements where it seems unlikely that the user spent any time considering what they were agreeing to.
There are a few things I find are helpful when evaluating CV suggestions. One is the “similar species” tab on the taxon pages, which will provide an idea of how often the organism is misidentified and what some of those species are (and whether you can see the differences). Another is to go up a level or two – to genus or tribe or family – and look at a couple of things: First, what percentage of the observations are “research grade” in your area; if this is quite low, it suggests that the taxon in question is likely difficult and you should be cautious when adding IDs. Second, on the explore page for your region, click on the “species” tab to see other species in the genus/family and get a sense of whether they look similar and what the distinguishing features might be.
If you’re serious about IDing, it is definitely also important to find and use external resources (keys, field guides) for your taxa of interest. But experience helps, too, and judicious use of the material on iNat can be a good starting point to orient yourself.