I'm building a website where users review courses. I want to set up an interface so that users can report/flag reviews for objectionable content. Administrators will then have an interfacee where they can see all flagged reviews and unflag or act upon the report. Users can also upload syllabi, so it would be good if users can flag those too.

My ideal interface would be a flag that a user clicks, which causes a pop-up window to allow the user to explain why they're flagging the content, then submit. However, this wouldn't work on mobile short of causing the user to have to go a new page.

Is it reasonable to have these two different interfaces? Or is asking the user to explain an unnecessary complication? I feel like adding the explanation form might make it harder for people to spam reports, but it might also make users less likely to report things (less effort).

  • 1
    Why wouldn't a popup work on mobile for your app? Popups (or slide-ins) are used all the time for modal interactions in mobile
    – tohster
    May 6, 2015 at 0:38

2 Answers 2


If you have some common motives to why a user would flag content, you could use the flag button as a popover/drop-down where the user can select one of the common motives or explain it him self.

This dribbble shot is a good illustration of what I mean.

Regarding how the user explains the flagging him self - I don't see why you couldn't use a pop-up both on desktop and mobile devices.

  • 1
    That drop-down seems like a really good compromise -- thanks for sharing it May 6, 2015 at 14:20
  • That dribble shot link is broken
    – Goose
    May 18, 2019 at 22:56

I would make the flag explanation field optional. And the flow would be like this.

Flag click/tap > Want to explain why? [Just flag] [Explain] [Undo flag]

If the users decide to explain why they are flagging a course, then you take them to the new page where they can fill up the flag explanation.

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