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In software development, Flag means to mark an object to indicate that a particular event has occurred or that the object marked is unusual in some way. Steemit interface warns that flagging a post can remove rewards and make the material less visible. It recommends some common reasons to flag:

  • Disagreement on rewards
  • Fraud or Plagiarism
  • Hate Speech or Internet Trolling
  • Intentional miscategorized content or Spam

Steemian Thomas Te Aroha Kohi (@senseiteekay) defended that the flag was created for fair scoring of content and to report abuse. For him, the term "flag" is negative and that it should only be used to police malevolent activity on the platform, such as physical abuse or other illegal activities that the general public finds absolutely intolerable. If someone posts plagiarism, material that is copyrighted by law, it is too considered abusive behavior, because it is illegal.[1]

Tim Cliff (@timcliff) thinks the "Disagreement on rewards", included in the "common reasons to flag" list, is very subjective. He alerts that the list is not exclusive though, people are allowed to flag for any reason they want. He has a suggestion: If you get flagged - don't take it personally.[2]


To many other steemians Flags are simply a negative vote. The difference between an upvote and a flag vote is that you will not earn any curation awards for flagging. While upvoting adds reputation to the author, a flag will remove reputation from an author. In both up and down voting, the effect of your vote is determined by your own voting power.

Flagging is NOT used as a method of disagreeing with what the author wrote or to show that you don't like the topic chosen by the author. Flagging should normally not be done except for situations where the author has deliberately and repeatedly broken the rules of conduct on the Steemit platform.

Plagiarism would be a reason to flag someone, but generally only after politely explaining that you think the author has used unauthorized content. The author should be given sufficient time to respond and correct their mistake or prove ownership of the content.

Inappropriate use of tags would be another reason to flag, but again, the same courtesy should be shown to the author due to the fact everyone can make a mistake. In this situation you can follow @senseiteekay way of thinking: "If I disagree with something, I either try to voice my opinion with reasoning, and if myself or the other person can not reach an understanding, I simply choose to walk away.[1]

Flag Wars

By flagging someone, you're attacking both their reputation and their potential rewards on the platform. Since the Steemit's official launch in July 4th, 2016 there are some discussion over the use of flags. In January 2017, it seems that large stakeholders (whales) have taken it upon themselves to dictate the value of certain posts, citing that they're policing content for the good of the platform. Some steemians called this situation a Flag Wars, both concerned and in humorous ways. The steemian @inertia also created a script that helped define, search and analyze these situations.[3]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Steemit - Value is Subjective Written by Thomas Te Aroha Kohi (@senseiteekay) in Steemit in January 2017
  2. Flagging Written by Tim Cliff (@timcliff) in Steemit in January 2017
  3. How to Find Flag Wars with Ruby Written by @inertia in Steemit in January 2017


Related articles

External links

  • Webopedia : Flag Retrieved in 6/17/2017

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