In connection with the moderator elections, we will be holding a Town Hall Chat session with the candidates. This will be an opportunity for members of the community to pose questions to the candidates on the topic of moderation. Participation is completely voluntary. I will be working with candidates to determine a time for the event.

The Town Hall Chat took place Wednesday the 27th at 03:00:00Z UTC. A digest can be found here.

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Here are the details so far:

  • I would like to schedule this towards the beginning of the primary phase. This means that I am looking at the 25th-27th of February. As soon as I coordinate with the existing moderators and candidates to find a best fit based on availability, I will edit this post with details on the "when".
  • The Town Hall Chat will be a one-hour event using our chat platform. I will update this post with a direct link to the chat room once the event is scheduled.
  • The format will be an open discussion. Users are encouraged to pose questions to the candidates regarding their thoughts on moderation.
  • Priority for scheduling is generally towards the greatest number of candidate openings as well as the earliest. Candidates who cannot show up during the live event will still be able to answer all questions posted, they will just do so at their earliest convenience.
  • If you can't make it but have questions you wish to pose to the candidates, please leave them here as a response, and I will ask it on your behalf.
  • After the chat session, a digest of the event will be permanently linked here.

4 Answers 4


A genie grants you a wish: you may change one site policy (e.g. make a type of question on/off topic, change some tagging habits, …) (SE policies remain). What is your wish?

  • +1 for mentioning a SFF premise - ontopic :) [well, and for a great thing to figure out about potential moderators' views] Feb 27, 2013 at 23:39
  1. What is the threshold at which you consider something as a community imposed general (non-question-specific) policy based on Meta Q&A? E.g. if there is a consensus answer with +3 vote margin, do you consider it a policy? +8 vote margin? No specific threshold aside from your own opinion?

  2. Do you take into account the "Leave open" information from Review queue when applying moderator-binding-close-votes (as opposed to only existing close votes and flags) to obtain a more balanced picture? If such information isn't available, WOULD you have taken it into account if it was?

  3. What is your threshold for binding-voting to close a question? "I would have VTCed it if my vote wasn't binding"? A critical mass of unopposed VTCs and flags? Do you consider NOT voting (and opening a meta discussion) if the comments on the question indicate a clear LACK of consensus on closing and it wasn't discussed on meta yet?

  4. Please provide an example (specific question) of a moderator action that you would have liked to have taken based on your own opinion but would refrain from taking based on meta or comments achieved community consensus.


A high reputation user was accused of harassing a lower ranking user. What do you do?


What's the last SF book you read? How long ago?

  • Why is that relevant to someone's moderator abilities/qualities? Would someone be a good/bad moderator in your view if the answer is an obscure 1940s story (and why)? Azimov's Foundation? Young Adult Jedi book from Star Wars or one of "Harry Potter" books? François Bordes's book? Feb 27, 2013 at 16:58
  • @DVK I don't really mind, that's just a human touch. Mainly I want to tell the “so long ago I don't remember” crowd from the “finished X this morning and leafing through Y as I type this” crowd.
    – user56
    Feb 27, 2013 at 17:18
  • But that still doesn't explain what that has to do with moderation job. I read SF&F virtually non-stop (so my answer would be "today", literally) yet I'm not very well suited to moderator job, both temperamentally and as far as time I can allot. OTOH I know at least one user who would make a great moderator (including prior successful moderation experience) yet very possibly didn't read more than 10 SF books in the last several years AFAIK. Of course if the answer is "I'm just curious" that's fine - I just guessed you - having been a mod - thought it was relevant for some reason. Feb 27, 2013 at 23:37
  • @DVK It's not of primary importance, but I know I can rely on others to ask the more generic questions (when do you decide to cast a binding vote, how do you deal with a troublesome user, etc.). So I only proposed thematic questions.
    – user56
    Feb 27, 2013 at 23:44

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