I'm designing a site that is driven by user-generated content and will not be heavily moderated. So users need to be able to flag/report inappropriate content and users. I've read that if the asset is reported by 5 distinct IP addresses or users, it should be taken down automatically. I've also seen examples where the site administrators "look into" a reported asset before removing it. But what happens to the user who's being reported? Are they emailed? Notified the next time they sign in? Are those assets still visible to them, but no one else? Is their account frozen if they're reported too many times? Any and all best practice recommendations are greatly appreciated.

  • Related: How can I prevent spam on sites which I control? Commented Jan 23, 2014 at 2:20
  • 1
    It'd probably be helpful if the question pinned down the kind of inappropriate content: spam is pretty easy to spot and would be dealt with in one way; inappropriate content from real users needs dealing with in a more sensitive way as you really want to keep your users but just pursuade them not to post certain stuff.
    – PhillipW
    Commented Aug 21, 2014 at 15:20

3 Answers 3


Slightly off topic - The nicest feature I've seen on this kind of site (if it allows online 'discussion') is an 'Ignore' Button so that users can choose to ignore the postings of a particular user (their posts then show afterwards as 'Ignored User').

This adds a "pre-reporting" stage so that users who post content which could end up producing more heated arguments is diffused at an earlier stage, as argument is prevented from occuring.

This has the knock on effect that there is less content which gets reported and therefore needs dealing with.


unless the user did a really really bad spam i will take that user down,

But if they did something bad (like a bad comment), then i won't take down user even they did that > 5 times cos it's internet & we need freedom. However, I have a solution. That is you can have many level of reputation.

-Level 1: very good

-Level 2: good

-Level 3: bad

-Level 4: really bad

If a comment is in Level 3 or 4, & if someone click on it, you make a popup saying

"that this comment is not polite, do you still want to view?" Yes No
"are you > 18 years old" Yes No
... more question depending on the "BAD" level

If the user clicks all the Yes, then show the comment. If user click No for 1 question, then won't show the comment.

The more "BAD"s then you put more questions.

By doing this you save a lot of time to managing the bad comment since all bad comments was managed automatically.

1 more, how we know a bad comment? if a comment was voted down many time then it is bad, if more votes down, then more "BAD" level applied

  • 2
    Asking for age is kinda silly. My experience with websites like Reddit, Youtube and others with comment karma is that the comments that are inappropriate for young readers usually get more upvotes than downvotes. It might have to do with the age and gender of those audiences, but I find that comments involving blood, gore, sex, violence and drugs are usually somewhat higher, especially if they're just wrong. Also, it's really easy to lie about your age if there's no way to verify it.
    – Nzall
    Commented May 23, 2014 at 9:30
  • @Nate true I believe there is a thread on here about how age verification does not work/help. The only time I find it useful is at work to stop me from accidentally entering an inappropriate thread. Tam, by more questions for the more "Bad" it is do you mean different questions for each level of bad or actually more (so if really bad you have to click yes on 4 different verification, it sounds like the latter which to me sounds like really annoying UX.
    – DasBeasto
    Commented Aug 16, 2015 at 21:43

In my opinion, the simpler and more discrete way to manage these kinds of alert is to include it in the notation.


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  • I find tying reporting for abuse and dislike together is a bad choice. Then it will become a common language that immediately what I disliked should be reported (especially because those two are tied in with one another).
    – UXerUIer
    Commented Feb 17, 2015 at 19:06
  • I gotta say I agree with @Majo0od here; ignoring the debate on whether or not the downvote is actually a useful feature to include in the first place, disliking and flagging shouldn't be conflated like this.
    – moberemk
    Commented Jun 7, 2015 at 2:17

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