Routinely, posts with certain criteria are marked as low quality and they show up in my queue. Sometimes I'm unsure how to moderate these, when it comes to the content of the posts (rather than the length, lack of sources, etc.)

All I see is this: "This answer was flagged as low-quality because of its length and content."

How does the system determine what is low quality content, with regard to answers? If I better knew that, I'd probably have a better idea of what to say.

Did a user flag it rather than the system? In that case, maybe I should just comment and say why it might not be a great idea or something (if I concur). I notice you can't downvote in the queue without going to the question/answer page (so, maybe that isn't intended to be part of this particular moderation process (but it seems like maybe it should be).


There are two ways (that I know of):

  1. The Stack Exchange software analyzes each post as it's made and calculates a "score" for it. If the score is below a certain value, the system automatically generates a "low quality (auto)" flag and pushes it into the VLQ review queue. The exact details of the analysis algorithm aren't public knowledge, but it's safe to say that a shorter post is more likely to be flagged than a longer one.

  2. Another user flags the post as "not an answer" or "very low quality". It has to be another user: you won't see posts in the review queue that you have flagged.

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