On this question:

Will people automatically look at the person they feel closest to when laughing?

My comment was purged:

enter image description here

In my comment, I have linked the question that I asked cogsci.se with more information on the post (e.g: the book which made the claim).

I don't see how that link is not useful: an answer to this question here might also be an answer to the question there (and vice-versa).

It is not that I oppose the deletion, but I'd like to know what was the reason of deletion so that I would learn how to comment in future posts.

  • 2
    Deleted comments because... they weren't constructive.
    – Oddthinking Mod
    Apr 29, 2015 at 15:48
  • Flagged the comment on my question as non-constructive; because it isn't constructive. Apr 30, 2015 at 7:02
  • 1
    We are much more lenient in meta
    – Sklivvz
    May 1, 2015 at 1:43

2 Answers 2


Comments are third-class citizens on Skeptics Stack Exchange. This is a "question and answer site for scientific skepticism", not a "question and answer and comment site for scientific skepticism".

Comments are a necessary evil, to make the questions and answers better. They are brutally casually deleted when they are not constructive at improving the question and brutally quickly deleted if they fail the 'be nice' test.

If we err in any direction, IMHO, we don't delete enough comments, but it is time-consuming to stay on top of them.

The deleted comment suggested the question was 'hopeless'. This is not constructive criticism, as it fails to show how to improve the question. (Just add more hope?) It is not factual, as this is just an opinion.

Tone is hard to convey in text, but at least three mods think its tone failed the 'Be Nice' test.

So, it was deleted.

If you have a way to fix the question, without fundamentally changing it, edit it. If you think the question cannot be saved, downvote, vote to close and/or post a nice comment with clear reasons.

  • 1
    +1 for the <strike>brutality</strike> honesty.
    – ChrisW
    Apr 29, 2015 at 20:56
  • How many of the three mods are non-native speakers of English?
    – Golden Cuy
    Oct 28, 2015 at 12:12

Apart from not-quite-politely calling the question 'hopeless', it would be a more interesting comment if the cogsci question had an answer. So if the cogsci question is eventually answered you could post a new comment to say, "By the way, a copy of this question was answered here on cogsci.SE".

  • Why is calling a question 'hopeless' impolite? Does the question have feelings :p? May 5, 2015 at 7:35
  • If you Google for define:hopeless you may find that the second, 'British' meaning of hopeless is, "very bad or incompetent. "I'm hopeless at names" synonyms: very bad, very poor, awful, terrible, dreadful, appalling, frightful, atrocious, inferior, incompetent, inadequate, ineffective; More antonyms: accomplished ". If I tell you, "that was a hopeless attempt" that means, stop attempting, don't bother even trying anymore. EVen if you'd rephrased the beginning as, "In case this question won't be answered here, I asked..." etc.
    – ChrisW
    May 5, 2015 at 7:43
  • If you Google define:hopeless, you will find the true definition of the word: feeling or causing despair about something. After days on the question being asked, I felt despair about the question, it is good a question; if you look at the edit history also you would see that I made it a good question. What I meant for hopeless is that the question is lonely and won't likely be attracting answers, it is impossible to answer; not that it is bad, poor, awful, dreadful. May 5, 2015 at 8:00
  • And besides if you still think that I meant that the question is 'synonyms: very bad, very poor, awful, terrible, dreadful, appalling, frightful, atrocious, inferior, incompetent, inadequate, ineffective' why would I repeat it and ask it on another site? May 5, 2015 at 8:01
  • You asked why your comment was deleted. IIRC a now-deleted comment in reply to this topic said it was deleted because some people found it rude and pointless. I am not one of those people! I said (accepting what other people said about it) that "hopeless" was "not-quite-polite" rather than (as you claim) "impolite": and, apart from that (i.e. more to the point), that it would be more useful if there were (or when there will be) a reply to your question on cogsci. hth.
    – ChrisW
    May 5, 2015 at 8:24

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