2023 Moderator Election

nomination began
Oct 17, 2023 at 20:00
election began
Oct 31, 2023 at 20:00
election ended
Nov 8, 2023 at 20:00
candidates
6
positions
1

On Stack Exchange, we believe the core moderators should come from the community, and be elected by the community itself through popular vote. We hold regular elections to determine who these community moderators will be.

Community moderators are accorded the highest level of privilege on our community, and should themselves be exemplars of positive behavior and leaders within the community.

Our general criteria for moderators is as follows:

  • patient and fair
  • leads by example
  • shows respect for their fellow community members in their actions and words
  • open to some light but firm moderation to keep the community on track and resolve (hopefully) uncommon disputes and exceptions

Every election has three phases:

  1. Nomination
  2. Primary
  3. Election

Please participate in the moderator elections by voting, and perhaps even by nominating yourself to be a community moderator!

Additional Links

Questionnaire
The community team has compiled questions from meta for the candidates to answer.
  1. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

[Answer 1 here]

  1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc. a question that you feel shouldn’t have been?

[Answer 2 here]

  1. There is a new user that posts a few answers with the same link that may or may not be their own site or blog. Sometimes it seems like an appropriate resource, on other questions it 'snot very relevant. One of the user's posts has been flagged as spam due to this. How do you approach handling this flag and the new user in general?

[Answer 3 here]

  1. Situation: A user that recently acquired the create tags privilege (300+ rep), creates a new tag for a question of theirs. They then suggest several edits that add this tag to various other existing questions on the same topic. These suggested edits all get approved in the review queue. But, all of this has happened without any discussion on the meta site. As a moderator, what actions (if any) would you take?

[Answer 4 here]

  1. Situation: An especially active user, alongside a collection of great contributions to the site, also consistently posts low-quality answers, asks low-quality questions, and occasionally offers snide and/or rude remarks in the comments. This user is one of the highest-reputation and longest-active users on the site. How do you work with this individual in a way that retains their positive contributions, limits their negative contributions, and is beneficial both to the user and to the community as a whole?

[Answer 5 here]

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

[Answer 6 here]

  1. A diamond will be attached to everything you say and have said in the past, including questions, answers and comments. Everything you will do will be seen under a different light. How do you feel about that?

[Answer 7 here]

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching enough reputation to access moderator tools or become a trusted user?

[Answer 8 here]

Michal Paszkiewicz

I play a variety of keyboard and string instruments.

Recently I have got into making my own custom stringed instruments to fit my growing need for complex arrangements.

If I am voted in, I will be a moderate moderator, moderating everything in moderation.

Questionnaire
  1. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

Why are there so many arguments? This question is too generic to be answered with a sweeping statement.

  1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc. a question that you feel shouldn’t have been?

I would ask the moderator why it was closed. If I disagreed with the moderator, we would have to have a dance-off to see who wins.

  1. There is a new user that posts a few answers with the same link that may or may not be their own site or blog. Sometimes it seems like an appropriate resource, on other questions it 's not very relevant. One of the user's posts has been flagged as spam due to this. How do you approach handling this flag and the new user in general?

Where it is indeed spam, it should be removed. But it should be investigated first as to its value.

  1. Situation: A user that recently acquired the create tags privilege (300+ rep), creates a new tag for a question of theirs. They then suggest several edits that add this tag to various other existing questions on the same topic. These suggested edits all get approved in the review queue. But, all of this has happened without any discussion on the meta site. As a moderator, what actions (if any) would you take?

I would raise it as a topic in meta and see what the people think. I am a man of the people.

  1. Situation: An especially active user, alongside a collection of great contributions to the site, also consistently posts low-quality answers, asks low-quality questions, and occasionally offers snide and/or rude remarks in the comments. This user is one of the highest-reputation and longest-active users on the site. How do you work with this individual in a way that retains their positive contributions, limits their negative contributions, and is beneficial both to the user and to the community as a whole?

We would make friends, have a beer together, and we would see if we can find our inner peace.

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

Organise the data to increase the value of a product.

  1. A diamond will be attached to everything you say and have said in the past, including questions, answers and comments. Everything you will do will be seen under a different light. How do you feel about that?

I would prefer if it was a little harp symbol.

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching enough reputation to access moderator tools or become a trusted user?

The real benefit hear is that you wouldn't have to wait for me to gain the reputation I'd need. You'd get my moderate moderation with little to no effort.

Neil Meyer

Hi, my name is Neil. I have been a part of this SE for ten years. In this time I have contributed 565 answers and 98 question. I have also reached 1,6 million people according to my Impact tab.

Although, I have transitioned away from trying to make music my career (I work in IT now) I still possess a lot of useful information. I would still like to engage the music community in a meaningful way, and I believe that nominating myself would be a way to do so.

Questionnaire
  1. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

I would link to the relevant "be nice" thread. I would remind everyone why comments exist and that extended debates and needlessly argumentative post are not the reason why they exist.

I would also admit that certain post may be controversial in nature and may elicit some strong opinions, but there are limits and rules regarding the posting of them.

Comments may need cleaning up and certain comment threads may require a move to chat and/or deleted.

  1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc. a question that you feel shouldn’t have been?

As with all questions about unjust closing it should be discussed on meta. Maybe I would send the mod a DM before taking the issue there.

SE is a community driven website. All standards should be driven by the community. If there is a difference of opinion about a question, then a community consensus should be obtained. This is no difference if the matter is between two mods, two users, or a mod and a user.

  1. There is a new user that posts a few answers with the same link that may or may not be their own site or blog. Sometimes it seems like an appropriate resource, on other questions it 'snot very relevant. One of the user's posts has been flagged as spam due to this. How do you approach handling this flag and the new user in general?

I would quote the new user the "welcome" post. Especially highlight the spam warning part of the "welcome" post.

Depending on how egregious the spam is there may need to edit out the spam part of the post or delete it completely. This would depend on how useful the meat is of the post and how major the spam is. This should be done on a case by case basis and be governed by the particulars of the post

  1. Situation: A user that recently acquired the create tags privilege (300+ rep), creates a new tag for a question of theirs. They then suggest several edits that add this tag to various other existing questions on the same topic. These suggested edits all get approved in the review queue. But, all of this has happened without any discussion on the meta site. As a moderator, what actions (if any) would you take?

I would make my own post on meta to discuss the matter. If there should be the requirement of a meta post in regards to tag creation then that should be made an official requirement.

If we as a community realise that 300 rep is insufficient seniority for tag creation then the 300 rep threshold should be adjusted.

What you cannot do is give users a privilege and then resent them for using it.

  1. Situation: An especially active user, alongside a collection of great contributions to the site, also consistently posts low-quality answers, asks low-quality questions, and occasionally offers snide and/or rude remarks in the comments. This user is one of the highest-reputation and longest-active users on the site. How do you work with this individual in a way that retains their positive contributions, limits their negative contributions, and is beneficial both to the user and to the community as a whole?

This would be hard. Snarky remarks should be mentioned. The tone of your answers matters.

Then the particulars of the low quality posts should be discussed. Long-term users should have a handle on what makes good posts.

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

They lead the community by moderating content to keep content up to community driven standards.

  1. A diamond will be attached to everything you say and have said in the past, including questions, answers and comments. Everything you will do will be seen under a different light. How do you feel about that?

As with most things in life if you want to lead a community your actions will be under higher scrutiny. I would expect nothing less.

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching enough reputation to access moderator tools or become a trusted user?

I cannot really offer any opinions on how effective my moderation may be. It will be a completely new experience for me.

I can only hope to help out the community.

empty

I'm only here because of the request for more choices. I've been a member for over 9 years and am in the top 2% of reputation. I am a professional musician, although all that means is I cover my expenses with paid performances. My main interests are live performance and improvisation, although my top tag is guitar. My main concerns with the site involve kindness, mutual respect, and hospitality towards new users, and I would concentrate on those issues if I was elected.

Questionnaire
  1. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

Arguments are not a problem; arguments are about facts; if a comment chain gets too long, I would say, "take it to chat."

Flags are another issue: I would first communicate directly with the user to understand their viewpoint and try to understand if the user is a troll or if they just need some coaching in social skills or content production. If communication fails, I would rigorously apply the rules we already have in place.

  1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc. a question that you feel shouldn’t have been?

I would first communicate with the mod to understand their viewpoint. If I still disagreed, I'd poll the other mods and go with the rough consensus.

  1. There is a new user that posts a few answers with the same link that may or may not be their own site or blog. Sometimes it seems like an appropriate resource, on other questions it's not very relevant. One of the user's posts has been flagged as spam due to this. How do you approach handling this flag and the new user in general?

I would communicate with the user explaining the rules and the problematic content. My go-to is always to assume ignorance rather than evil intent. If communication fails, I would rigorously apply the rules already in place.

  1. Situation: A user that recently acquired the create tags privilege (300+ rep), creates a new tag for a question of theirs. They then suggest several edits that add this tag to various other existing questions on the same topic. These suggested edits all get approved in the review queue. But, all of this has happened without any discussion on the meta site. As a moderator, what actions (if any) would you take?

I'm more concerned with results than process. I would only intervene if the results were problematic.

  1. Situation: An especially active user, alongside a collection of great contributions to the site, also consistently posts low-quality answers, asks low-quality questions, and occasionally offers snide and/or rude remarks in the comments. This user is one of the highest-reputation and longest-active users on the site. How do you work with this individual in a way that retains their positive contributions, limits their negative contributions, and is beneficial both to the user and to the community as a whole?

I would rigorously apply the rules already in place, explaining my reasons in the comments. Nobody is above the rules and a long-time user should know better.

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

Moderators do what leaders in high-functioning teams do: they eliminate the barriers that prevent people from being the best versions of themselves. I believe the mission of this site is to help people to engage with their musical interests to the best of their abilities.

  1. A diamond will be attached to everything you say and have said in the past, including questions, answers and comments. Everything you will do will be seen under a different light. How do you feel about that?

I'm indifferent; status doesn't interest me, only facts, kindness and mutual respect do.

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching enough reputation to access moderator tools or become a trusted user?

There is a trend in this site among some users to be unkind and to be unwelcoming to new visitors. I feel that I might help to mitigate that by being able to enforce the rules.

NReilingh

Hello. I'm Nick; I was active on the site from its birthing from Area 51 and served as a moderator "Pro Tempore" in its infancy. I've been away for a long time, but upon receiving a "bat signal" in my SE notifications today about more candidates needed, I've decided I would be capable of serving once again if the community voted me in. That said, my main objective with nominating myself here is to legitimize the election with a rich candidate pool and effectively function as a "backup" candidate, so if you would like to vote for me, please rank me at the bottom of your ballot, after any other candidates that you find to be qualified.

In the event that I were elected, I would re-engage with visiting the site regularly. I believe I can be counted on to handle moderator notifications in a timely manner.

Questionnaire
  1. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

I believe a moderator's duty is to consistently apply the community guidelines. A valuable user should not receive special treatment.

  1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc. a question that you feel shouldn’t have been?

If I believe the moderator has a knowledge gap that caused them to misinterpret the question, I would correct the decision and proactively reach out to the mod via chat to discuss further. In the event that I think the question was low quality but worth rescuing, I would reach out to the mod via chat and plan an edit to the question that would bring its quality level up to a point that we could reach consensus on before taking action.

  1. There is a new user that posts a few answers with the same link that may or may not be their own site or blog. Sometimes it seems like an appropriate resource, on other questions it's not very relevant. One of the user's posts has been flagged as spam due to this. How do you approach handling this flag and the new user in general?

I would do my best to educate the user on the purpose of Music.SE and encourage them to submit high-quality answers.

  1. Situation: A user that recently acquired the create tags privilege (300+ rep), creates a new tag for a question of theirs. They then suggest several edits that add this tag to various other existing questions on the same topic. These suggested edits all get approved in the review queue. But, all of this has happened without any discussion on the meta site. As a moderator, what actions (if any) would you take?

Depending on the specifics of the tag, I would either take no action or create a meta post myself to source a resolution from the community.

  1. Situation: An especially active user, alongside a collection of great contributions to the site, also consistently posts low-quality answers, asks low-quality questions, and occasionally offers snide and/or rude remarks in the comments. This user is one of the highest-reputation and longest-active users on the site. How do you work with this individual in a way that retains their positive contributions, limits their negative contributions, and is beneficial both to the user and to the community as a whole?

I think this question is equivalent to question #1. In both situations, clear communication, consistent actions, and encouragement of good behavior are the best course of action.

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

Moderators leverage platform tools to handle exception cases, not make broad changes.

  1. A diamond will be attached to everything you say and have said in the past, including questions, answers and comments. Everything you will do will be seen under a different light. How do you feel about that?

I believe I have always conducted myself well and with a sense of humor in my past activities on Music.SE.

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching enough reputation to access moderator tools or become a trusted user?

Answered in my candidate statement; I already possess these privileges.

Nabla

I just want to increase competition.

I play electric guitar and piano. I know very less than people who are already nominated.

I wish good luck to all people competing.

Please vote for me. I am a nice guy.

Questionnaire
  1. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

[Answer 1 here]

  1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc. a question that you feel shouldn’t have been?

[Answer 2 here]

  1. There is a new user that posts a few answers with the same link that may or may not be their own site or blog. Sometimes it seems like an appropriate resource, on other questions it 'snot very relevant. One of the user's posts has been flagged as spam due to this. How do you approach handling this flag and the new user in general?

[Answer 3 here]

  1. Situation: A user that recently acquired the create tags privilege (300+ rep), creates a new tag for a question of theirs. They then suggest several edits that add this tag to various other existing questions on the same topic. These suggested edits all get approved in the review queue. But, all of this has happened without any discussion on the meta site. As a moderator, what actions (if any) would you take?

[Answer 4 here]

  1. Situation: An especially active user, alongside a collection of great contributions to the site, also consistently posts low-quality answers, asks low-quality questions, and occasionally offers snide and/or rude remarks in the comments. This user is one of the highest-reputation and longest-active users on the site. How do you work with this individual in a way that retains their positive contributions, limits their negative contributions, and is beneficial both to the user and to the community as a whole?

[Answer 5 here]

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

[Answer 6 here]

  1. A diamond will be attached to everything you say and have said in the past, including questions, answers and comments. Everything you will do will be seen under a different light. How do you feel about that?

[Answer 7 here]

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching enough reputation to access moderator tools or become a trusted user?

[Answer 8 here]

Elements in Space

G'day, I'm Elements in Space.

I've been using the Stack Exchange network for over 10 years, and the Music: Practice & Theory site for 5 (including 1000 days consecutively). Most of my network-wide reputation comes from M:P&T.

I enjoy spending a lot of time here: mostly reading and editing questions & answers, and retagging posts — I've learnt so much about many aspects of music in the process. I frequently make use of the meta sites, (both the local Music: Practice & Theory Meta and the general MSE). I also visit the chat to see what people are talking about (even if I don't have much to say).

Questionnaire
  1. How would you deal with a user who produce[s] a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

The first thing I would do is to try to talk to them. Most people are somewhat reasonable (especially when a moderator with a diamond is involved).

I would suggest that this is not what is expected of them, and point out that this place is not for starting arguments; that their behaviour is becoming a problem and that something needs to change.

Comments that were purely argumentative would be deleted, and if disruptive behaviour continues, I would have to consider warnings and suspensions.

  1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc. a question that you feel shouldn’t have been?

I would discuss the issue with them privately. I'd try to understand their reasoning before putting forth my point of view, and I'd treat it as a learning experience for me.

If we were still in firm disagreement, I'd be prepared to make compromises, or seek the opinion of a third moderator if necessary. As a new moderator, I would also accept if I were overruled by another moderator, but I would expect a proper explanation.

  1. There is a new user that posts a few answers with the same link that may or may not be their own site or blog. Sometimes it seems like an appropriate resource, on other questions [it's not] very relevant. One of the user's posts has been flagged as spam due to this. How do you approach handling this flag and the new user in general?

I would warn the users that this is not a place for spam, and direct them to the help page explaining How to not be a spammer.

I would perform some investigation as to possible affiliation between the users and the linked content. In the first instance, for places where the link is actually relevant and potentially useful, I'd edit their post to demonstrate proper disclosure of their connection.

When the link is not relevant, I'd delete it (and the entire post if necessary). If the user continued to post links whose relevance is questionable, I'd issue a suspension.
Blatant spam would be removed immediately and accounts would be banned.

  1. Situation: A user that recently acquired the create tags privilege (300+ rep), creates a new tag for a question of theirs. They then suggest several edits that add this tag to various other existing questions on the same topic. These suggested edits all get approved in the review queue. But, all of this has happened without any discussion on the meta site. As a moderator, what actions (if any) would you take?

The first thing I'd do is to leave a comment asking the user to pause retagging, and I'd direct them to the local meta site to pose a discussion about the merits of the potential tag. Then, I'd wait until several others had their say on the matter and voted accordingly. If the tag was accepted by the community, I'd let the user continue retagging. But if there was significant disagreement, only then would I go back and remove the tag from the affected posts.

  1. Situation: An especially active user, alongside a collection of great contributions to the site, also consistently posts low-quality answers, asks low-quality questions, and occasionally offers snide and/or rude remarks in the comments. This user is one of the highest-reputation and longest-active users on the site. How do you work with this individual in a way that retains their positive contributions, limits their negative contributions, and is beneficial both to the user and to the community as a whole?

Encouragement would be my initial approach. I'd acknowledge that their posts come from a place of experience, but also point out that their worst posts are just not up to an acceptable standard.

I would prompt them to seriously improve their low-quality posts. Content that cannot be (or is not within a reasonable time) fixed would be removed.

If they flagrantly ignore gentle encouragement, I would be prepared to be more stern with my prompts, and more free to delete their posts.

This in not a place for rude comments, so these would be deleted. Too many rude comments would result in suspension regardless of who the user is.

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

As I understand it, moderators keep sites running smoothly, and have access to various tools that make this easier.

Moderators handle tricky cases such as users exhibiting problematic behaviours. They resolve disputes, and sometimes need to lock posts to deescalate situations. They also handle flags by removing rude or obsolete comments, blocking spammers, or issuing suspensions to users that are ignoring the rules.

Moderators should check the local meta site regularly, and promote posts such as 's or 's to when necessary.
I think it's also good practice for moderators to be available in the chat when they can be, if anyone needs to discuss something.

  1. A diamond will be attached to everything you say and have said in the past, including questions, answers and comments. Everything you will do will be seen under a different light. How do you feel about that?

Honestly, I don't think it's a great design that moderator diamonds and the like, are applied retroactively to previous activities. For example, there are a number of posts that I have made on the local meta site that wouldn't make sense to anyone that didn't realise I wasn't a moderator when I made them.

Having said that, I'm confident that there aren't any questions, answers, or comments I have made or any other actions I have taken in this space that I regret or would want to change.

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching enough reputation to access moderator tools or become a trusted user?

It will probably take several more years for me to otherwise gain the reputation required for the top-tier privileges.

To delete and undelete content is one such privilege that I do not yet have. At the moment, I am able to vote-to-close posts for a variety of reasons. I've done this over 300 times and most have been successful. With moderator privileges, I would be able to close obviously problematic posts without requiring up to 4 other user's votes. I've raised over 600 flags on this site so far. Less than 1% have been declined. Almost all of them have been handled within a day or so.

Having greater privileges would save the time and focus of other users for other posts, thus improving the overall site more efficiently. Becoming a moderator would give me the ability to deal with flaggable content myself. I'd also be able to handle flags raised by other users and issue warnings and suspensions when necessary to help keep the site clean.

This election is over.