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In connection with the moderator elections, we will be holding a Q&A 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.

The purpose of this thread was to collect questions for the questionnaire. The questionnaire is now live, and you may find it here.

Here's how it'll work:

  • During the nomination phase, (so, until Monday, April 13th at 20:00:00Z UTC, or 4:00 pm EDT on the same day, give or take time to arrive for closure), this question will be open to collect potential questions from the users of the site. Post answers to this question containing any questions you would like to ask the candidates. Please only post one question per answer.

  • We, the Community Team, will be providing a small selection of generic questions. The first two will be guaranteed to be included, the latter ones are if the community doesn't supply enough questions. This will be done in a single post, unlike the prior instruction.

  • This is a perfect opportunity to voice questions that are specific to your community and issues that you are running into at current.

  • At the end of the phase, the Community Team will select up to 8 of the top voted questions submitted by the community provided in this thread, to use in addition to the aforementioned 2 guaranteed questions. We reserve some editorial control in the selection of the questions and may opt not to select a question that is tangential or irrelevant to moderation or the election. That said, if I have concerns about any questions in this fashion, I will be sure to point this out in comments before the decision making time.

  • Once questions have been selected, a new question will be opened to host the actual questionnaire for the candidates, containing 10 questions in total.

  • This is not the only option that users have for gathering information on candidates. As a community, you are still free to, for example, hold a live chat session with your candidates to ask further questions, or perhaps clarifications from what is provided in the Q&A.

If you have any questions or feedback about this new process, feel free to post as a comment here.

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15 Answers 15

16
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What is your view on current moderation policy on this site? Is there anything in particular you disagree with? If so, why? How would you reconcile this with needing to work with existing moderators?

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15
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As a moderator, how would you respond to learning that a user, or group of users, feels unfairly treated by another moderator? What steps would you take to learn their complaints, validate them, and what would you do with them if you felt they were valid or invalid, respectively?

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14
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We have a problem here, occasionally, when a new user will ask a question that doesn't quite fit our format, and thus gets put on hold very quickly. This often leads to the new user feeling unfairly targeted and leaving the stack soon after. As a mod, what would you do to help improve these new user's questions while still encouraging them to stay on the site?

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14
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What presence, if any, do you have, or would plan to have if you became a moderator, on the main Meta? Would you be willing and able to help RPG push for things there?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I assume by "main Meta" you mean Meta Stack Exchange? Just to be clear. \$\endgroup\$ – Grace Note Apr 13 '15 at 19:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ @GraceNote Correct, yes. There’d been some call in the election chat that we’d like some more presence there, to be more aware of what’s going on and possibly more able to push for things we’d like to see. \$\endgroup\$ – KRyan Apr 13 '15 at 19:29
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Here is a set of general questions, gathered as very common questions asked every election. As mentioned in the instructions, the first two questions are guaranteed to show up in the Q&A, while the others are if there aren't enough questions (or, if you like one enough, you may split it off as a separate answer for review within the community's 8).

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

  • In your opinion, what do moderators do?
  • 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?
  • In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?
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9
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Sometimes, we end up with multiple mid-to-high rep users arguing over a question, or a meta policy, or something else that happened on the site. These arguments can often range all over the site: from meta posts, to chat, to the main site. As a mod, what would you do to defuse arguments among users in good standing?

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8
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How would you handle a situation where another mod reopened a question that you feel shouldn't have been?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ How is this substantially different from "How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc a question that you feel shouldn't have been?" in GraceNote's form? \$\endgroup\$ – BESW Apr 8 '15 at 2:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ @BESW I'd suggest that there's a substantial difference between reopening a question and closing or deleting one. It might come under 'etc', but reopens are an issue we see a lot of, so it seemed like it might be a good idea to have. Obviously, if you don't think it's a good question, downvote it. \$\endgroup\$ – Miniman Apr 8 '15 at 2:57
8
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What do you want the community at large to do to help you when you're a moderator? What in particular would you encourage us to keep doing, and what would you like us to do differently?

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7
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What, in your view, is the role of a moderator as opposed to the role of an active, high-rep user? Why would you being a moderator make this site better than you being an active, high-rep user who can lead by example?

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7
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How will you, as a moderator, react to community consensus that you disagree with? How will you, as a moderator, handle issues on which the community has failed to reach consensus, particularly when you personally favor one particular side in the debate?

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5
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One of the hardest aspects of being a community leader is dealing with interpersonal conflicts. How do you propose to handle a) disputes between two reputable users that turn ugly in comments and b) a similar dispute wherein one party is directing their frustration at you directly? How would you use these disputes to help shape policy on the site?

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4
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Are there any new policy topics that you would like to see addressed during your term?

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-3
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Our site sometimes has a problem where users can be a little too dedicated to providing what they see as the most possible help – which often leads to them seeing XY Problems where there aren’t any, and demanding question-askers explain why they want to know the answer to a given question. They think will help get to the root of the problem, but often comes across as making them justify having the question. Behavior which might be appropriate if the question itself was on hold (or going that way), but is sometimes applied to perfectly-valid questions. Some users even seem to think that, particularly with new users, they know what the new user wants better than the new user does!

How would you, as a moderator, take steps to politely tone down the fervor on these kinds of issues? Since the first step of healing others is healing yourself, do you feel that you have done this kind of thing, and if so does that change being a moderator, with the extra gravitas the blue diamond adds to such questions?

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-6
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How does your system expertise complement that of the existing moderation team? In particular, what systems are you expert in in which the existing moderation team lacks expertise?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I believe the reason this may be receiving downvotes is because system expertise and moderation skills are very different. \$\endgroup\$ – Aza Apr 13 '15 at 3:56
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Emrakul I believe it is very relevant. I want a moderation team that can speak intelligently on as much of the spectrum as possible. Moderator close votes, for example, instantly close and open questions, and there are questions that look bad but are good for our site due to system specific nuances. Games like Polaris and Dawn of Worlds are very different from regular RPGs and if the moderation doesn't have representation from that segment of the community that's a problem. Ideally, maybe, information about what they're moderating might not matter. But it really, really does in practice \$\endgroup\$ – Please stop being evil Apr 13 '15 at 4:38
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Emrakul I understand the community disagrees, but I believe that the community is wrong about this and I will not delete this question unless a better version addressing the same core issue is posted and more favorably received. History consistently indicates that ruling groups out of touch with the thing they are ruling do not rule effectively. Without knowing anything about a segment of the RPG-verse I believe the moderation team will be unable to moderate as effectively as if they had a member who was an expert within that subgroup. \$\endgroup\$ – Please stop being evil Apr 13 '15 at 4:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ If there is an edit that would not fundamentally change the core issue that you think would be helpful for garnering upvotes, however, that would be most helpful. \$\endgroup\$ – Please stop being evil Apr 13 '15 at 4:43
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    \$\begingroup\$ Mm, I'm not sure I agree. Ideally (in my opinion), if a moderator is unsure about a question, they either won't close, or will ask the community. And, supposing they act incorrectly, well, they're human too, and the community can correct it easily. Do you have concrete examples where this has been a significant issue in the past? \$\endgroup\$ – Aza Apr 13 '15 at 4:51
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A common problem on stack exchange sites are discussions in comments.

Understanding that these are often legitimate discussions that are simply taking place in the wrong location, how would you deal with these situations while still being respectful to those involved?

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