2014 Moderator Election

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!

This election ended Aug 19 '14 at 20:00.

The results of this election can be viewed online via OpaVote. Anyone may download the election data. Voters have access to pre-built OpenSTV software to audit the results; all others may use this source distribution.

1,534 voters were eligible, 700 visited the site during the election, 467 visited the election page, and 285 voted

I would like to nominate myself, maple_shaft , many of you may know me as a moderator on Programmers.



  • Meta participation
  • My Programmers duties

Please tell us about the job

Current moderators: please tell us about the job

What have been your biggest challenges as a moderator?

When I disagree with a high reputation user. I try to discussion in Meta, refer to MSE for precedents. I usually find my disagreement with the high rep user was an education issue on my part.

What advice do you have for somebody considering this job?

You shouldn't want to be moderator to affect change or alter the direction of the site. Your opinion is no more important than anybody elses. If the majority disagrees with you then put your personal feelings on the matter aside and serve the majority consensus on the issue.

  • Consensus means everyone agrees. A majority means that most agree. Majority consensus is an oxymoron, unless the consensus is exclusively within a unified majority. – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 6 '14 at 15:01
  • You're one of my favorite mods on Programmers because of your level head, willingness to consider that you may be wrong in a disagreement, and the way you listen to the community. That said, I don't like the way you say here that you go to meta when you disagree with a high rep user - it makes you sound like you only care about high-rep users, which I know is not the case. I've seen you come to meta when a complete newbie disagrees with you and makes you think further discussion is warranted too. :) – Rachel Aug 6 '14 at 15:44
  • maple_shaft has been a solid moderator on Progse for quite some time, however you may wish to question his sanity for wanting to moderate two sites dedicated to more subjective topics. – Shog9 Aug 6 '14 at 15:50
  • Wish I could upvote Shog's comment.... – user1209 Aug 6 '14 at 15:59
  • @Shog9 I question my sanity everyday. Honestly I felt the candidate pool was a bit disappointing. I care about this site and felt I had to nominate myself so that everybody had better choices. – maple_shaft Aug 6 '14 at 16:04
  • @Rachel I wish I could write a longer nomination summary because the limited characters didn't allow me to completely convey what I was trying to say. I mention high rep users specifically because they have more moderation abilities and because they tend to be very active in review queues and flags. Moderators end up working very closely with the users that review and flag more often than users who contribute in other equally important ways. – maple_shaft Aug 6 '14 at 16:07
  • I for one support maple_shaft's candidature... as a Programmers regular. Per my observations, Workplace "moderation style" involves a bunch of specific traits that I would want to be picked and "ported" to Programmers in the course of cross-moderating both sites (did I mention that I believe that candidate is a good learner:) – gnat Aug 7 '14 at 13:55
  • Good summary! If question popularity is an important indicator of moderator capabilities, should we invite the author of the most popular question to run? – Joe Strazzere Aug 9 '14 at 21:30
  • Are you planning on significantly increasing your commitment here? Before the election you only had 4 answers, 1 edit, no reviews, and 1 question in 2014. It doesn't look like this will be top 8 but I think this is important. – enderland Aug 10 '14 at 13:02
  • @enderland I can only promise that I will try. I have experience in moderating subjective sites so I can hit the ground running quickly, but I do question my ability to be as committed as yourself. – maple_shaft Aug 10 '14 at 13:35

I enjoy the workplace and do what I can to support it with the privileges that my rep allows. Making me a mod would expand my ability to support the site.

I am relatively new, having been here only two months. But it has been a very busy two months.

  • I've voted on 1400 posts. (and gotten the shiny gold electorate badge for my efforts)
  • I've helped save questions by suggesting edits.
  • I've contributed high quality answers. I'm a firm believer in quality over quantity, even if that means less rep.
  • I've been a welcome wagon for new users, helping them understand the rules so that they can contribute good content in the future.
  • I've been active in meta and in chat, as well as with flagging.

With that said, there are some excellent candidates running, and I will continue to be an active participant in the workplace regardless of the outcome.

  • I've been impressed by your contributions here. You're relatively new to SE; do you have relevant outside experience? If so, sharing that would help us get a fuller picture of your skills. – Monica Cellio Aug 7 '14 at 14:58
  • @MonicaCellio Thanks for the feedback! While I don't have experience in any venue as a moderator per se, I have experience with smaller pieces of what I see a moderator as doing. I've been an alumni mentor, providing gentle guidance to undergraduates. I'm used to dealing with NPPI and PII data at work. I was involved in student government in college and was a Resident Advisor, where I both nurtured the floor community as well as enforced policies in the dorm, including breaking up loud parties and mediating disputes. I've also done janitorial work as a volunteer. Nothing with fleets though:) – Matt Giltaji Aug 7 '14 at 16:13
  • Hi all, feel free to take a look at this question about burnout and my lack of a track record and my response in the election chat. – Matt Giltaji Aug 11 '14 at 1:56

Every moderator should ensure they RESPECT their fellow SO contributors. In my case, if you choose to honor me with your vote I will show respect in the following ways:

  • Reasonable and fair,
  • Essential,
  • Satirical,
  • Professional,
  • Energetic,
  • Candorous,
  • Timely.

While others talk about thier SO resume, one thing remains clear to me. Anyone, given enough time can amass a good SO resume. However, that list of numbers doesn't mean that they are moderator material. Instead, look at the quality of thier character, and think "Would I trust this person to choose the fate of my question or response?" If the answer is no, then they dont' get your vote. I will ensure you get the full RESPECT your questions and answers deserve. Please vote for Me.

  • Hey Mike, you have 0 flags, 0 reviews, 0 edits, and 0 meta participation. While I'm sure you may very well be reasonable and fair, other than taking your word for it, how can we tell? You talk about character, but I just don't know how we can judge that in the context of how you'd do as a moderator especially. If we need to judge your character, could you let us know what we should use to make that judgment? Thanks in advance. – jmac Aug 6 '14 at 0:52
  • To be cynical, some questions and some answers don't deserve much of any respect at all. I remember one character in particular, who asked a weirdly phrased question. It turned out that he was trying to get us to do his B-school homework :) – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 6 '14 at 4:34
  • jmac: Certainly! In my real-life I've held a number of positions requiring the ability to moderate very difficult situations. Most recently, as the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors of Elections of a small city on the east-coast, I regularly moderated between very campaigns and their surrogates. This position, to which I was re-elected by the other supervisors, required a high degree of patience and the ability to treat very difficult folks with fairness. – Mike Van Aug 6 '14 at 18:24
  • vietnhi: Trolls will be trolls. A moderator must be able to distinguish between a troll, satire, and a well-intentioned but poorly written question. I can do that. Respect refers to how you treat the individual, not their message. A Troll may write a number of poor questions intended to irritate, but that doesn't mean they are some hepitude deserving of no respect. – Mike Van Aug 6 '14 at 18:27

I would like to nominate myself for moderator.

I curse like a sailor on roid rage and I am experienced in using negative emotions to influence others.

I'd be pretty lazy about moderating, but occasionally I would log on, lay down the law, and leave lesser moderators to clean up the bloody mess.

To be honest, I don't think I'll get any votes (times aren't that rough yet), but I thought I would take one for the team, in order to make the other nominees look better.

  • I think your account is too new and inexperienced in the ways of this community to be a good candidate for moderator this year. You've only had an account for 3 months. Some of your peers in this election have been here much longer (1-2 years). You only have 2 helpful flags. You also haven't voted very much (relatively speaking). I see that your Stack Overflow and Mathematics accounts are older, but even on those, you haven't voted very much on content. I'm not sure if you would be a good judge of content, which is a requirement of good moderators. – TheWarriorNamedFoo Aug 5 '14 at 15:36
  • @TheWarriorNamedFoo I know I'm not a good candidate, as I mentioned I just volunteered to get 0 votes so that nobody else would be upset for being last place ;) – CaptainCodeman Aug 5 '14 at 16:10
  • I am sorry but I think that @enderland can layeth the smackdown more knowledgeably than you can, as he's gone around the block. – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 6 '14 at 4:37


I would like to nominate myself as a moderator.

  • 3 Years of SO experience
  • Ten years of workplace experience
  • Have experience as both the boss and employee
  • I can read and speak English good
  • I don't like voting to close posts for no reason
  • I want to keep our community clean
  • Hey itcouldevenbeaboat, you have 0 flags, 0 reviews, 1 edit, and 1 meta answer. When you say you 'don't like voting to close posts for no reason' and 'want to keep our community clean' it isn't clear what a good reason to close posts is to you, or what keeping the community clean means to you. Could you please expand on what you mean by these so that people can make an informed decision based on your nomination since there is a lack of activity that tells us what your stance is? Thanks in advance. – jmac Aug 6 '14 at 0:58
  • My official position on the following is: rock and roll. – Code Whisperer Aug 6 '14 at 13:56
  • "I can read and speak English well" FTFY – Ampt Aug 6 '14 at 15:53
  • I feel like using "good" there makes it easier for the commoners to relate – Code Whisperer Aug 6 '14 at 17:34
  • commoners? Did you really just refer to english as a second language users as commoners? – Ampt Aug 8 '14 at 14:50
  • Could you elaborate on what "keep our community clean" means to you? – Joe Strazzere Aug 9 '14 at 21:22

Hello Workplace.

I will continue to work passionately to make this a better place. Whether this better place is one you want it to go -- you get to decide.

This will help you:


  • I passionately desire The Workplace to have high quality content and enjoy helping people meet their career goals
  • I have been active on this site for nearly two years
  • I consistently leave helpful and friendly comments
  • I regularly post on meta and participate in chat
  • I have posted 24 questions and 191 answers during the two years I have been here, generating nearly 26,000 reputation


  • I will be hands on and willing to close/edit questions which are off topic and add notices to answers equally falling short
  • I am an active 20k+ user, casting many close/delete votes, which will naturally be used somewhat more sparingly
  • My work/personal life is fairly variable in terms of time commitment
  • I downvote a lot, though still have a positive voting ratio
  • About time you nominated yourself. For those unfamiliar with enderland's participation here, he's been a passionate and enthusiastic supporter of TWP for quite some time now. – Shog9 Aug 5 '14 at 0:36
  • As one who took plenty of negative ratings from this individual, I can do without his enthusiasm and his passion. I don't think I learned much of anything and got much of anything but frustration from his downvotes. – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 5 '14 at 1:57
  • I'll echo Shog9's comments - good to see that you have nominated yourself! It's only natural that someone who has cared so deeply about this site should run to be elected as moderator. – user1209 Aug 5 '14 at 1:58
  • The candidate pool is better off with you in it as you are such an active user who has already given so much to the community. If nothing else, I hope this gets people to look over your meta contributions as you've had a lot of good ones over the years. Particularly this one. – jmac Aug 5 '14 at 3:18
  • Enderland's passion for keeping TWP on target has always run deep. I have seen him pluck duplicates from the very bowels of the archives. I have seen him rally to knock down the close vote queue. And with 2400+ votes cast (as well as pretty much all of the "noteworthy" badges), he has actively participated in pretty much every aspect of TWP. It may not make him popular, but it definitely makes TWP a stronger, higher quality site. – Matt Giltaji Aug 5 '14 at 3:28
  • For those of you worried about losing a 20k rep user, don't. Think about where we'll be three to six months from now, not today. We'll gain more 20kers in the blink of an eye but good mod candidates are rare. What's most important is a user's passion, willingness to make tough calls, and still have respect for fellow users. @enderland is one of the leaders of this community, and has heavily influenced its direction. He proves it with high meta participation which addresses community issues, helpful flags that bring moderator attention to trouble spots, and he does it all with a smile. :) – jmort253 Aug 5 '14 at 5:29
  • Great to see you in the running! – yoozer8 Aug 5 '14 at 12:12
  • I am glad to see you in the running. You have a long history of strong contributions. – Monica Cellio Aug 5 '14 at 19:23
  • I'm horrified to admit it, but with seven candidates running as of now, you are by far the best qualified candidate. You walk the walk and you talk the talk. – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 6 '14 at 0:12
  • @Shog9 What is TWP ? – Radu Murzea Aug 6 '14 at 7:44
  • Is there a like button? – watercooler Aug 6 '14 at 7:46
  • @RaduMurzea TWP="The Workplace" Sounds familiar? :) – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 6 '14 at 12:23
  • @karthikbharadwaj, after the nomination phase ends, you will be able to vote on up to three candidates. Until then, there are just comments and the election chat, as well as various posts on meta. Hope this helps! – jmac Aug 6 '14 at 12:59

I would like to stand for election as a moderator.

I have had disagreements with the incumbents' actions, of late, and I honestly believe that you shouldn't complain about things if you aren't willing to help fix them. Well, here I stand to offer to help fix them.

I will stand for those who feel that "The Workplace" encompasses all aspects of the work environment, and not just employer/employee interactions. I will also stand for members' ability to express their views on correct responses and courses of action to workplace events without being derided in comments for holding those views.

I humbly ask for your support.

  • I applaud the "don't whine if you're not willing to fix" attitude you express here, but would love to see a bit more detail on what you intend to fix and how you'd like to go about that. – Shog9 Aug 5 '14 at 0:37
  • I am not sure what you mean by "all aspects for the work environment" because we are answering questions about employee/employee, team member/manager, employee/vendor, etc. interactions. We are doing all kinds of interactions wrt employees already. What is it that we are not doing that you think we should be doing? – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 5 '14 at 1:47
  • "I will also stand for members' ability to express their views on correct responses and courses of action to workplace events without being derided in comments for holding those views."How does that translate in terms of the realities on the ground? If someone holds outrageous views or abhorrent views or nonsensical views or views based on their making up facts as they go along, those views SHOULD be ripped apart !!! If you don't like this self-correcting and self-policing mechanism, what correcting and policing mechanism do YOU propose as an alternative? – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 5 '14 at 2:00
  • @VietnhiPhuvan - I nominate VietnhiPhuvan. – Vector Aug 5 '14 at 4:36
  • @Vector I claim to be under age and thus ineligible to run, on the grounds that I am entering my second childhood :) – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 5 '14 at 4:46
  • How should a moderator balance "the rules" and personal feelings about what makes a good site? – Joe Strazzere Aug 9 '14 at 22:09
  • I have tried to edit my post to include responses. The length is too limited, so pardon me for using comments to do so. – Wesley Long Aug 9 '14 at 22:14
  • @VietnhiPhuvan - Specifically: Freelancing. Freelancing is absolutely part of the workplace, but the current "regime" (for lack of a better word) seems to disagree with that. There was a young man who asked a very good question about how to manage a freelance project that ran over deadline. I, and others, gave a very good set of answers to him. It was removed. I don't miss my rep points, but there was really good advice in there, and not just mine. This site is for that purpose, and ideological "purity tests" shouldn't get that content struck down. – Wesley Long Aug 9 '14 at 22:17
  • @VietnhiPhuvan - Commenting on the merits or shortcomings of an answer is not only to be encouraged, but required in a site such as this. However, many comments degrade into ad-hominem attacks quite quickly. I would like to see a more timely and stern response to those. – Wesley Long Aug 9 '14 at 22:18
  • @JoeStrazzere - "The rules" are the agreed-upon conditions of the site, and should be followed. What has been happening of late, in my opinion, is that there are many who are trying to use "The rules" to implement their own particular communications styles on this site. I don't want to run a negative campaign, so I'm not going to name names. However, "back it up" has been used as a club when someone disagrees with an answer, even when the poster has "backed it up." It's happened to me, lately, but I've seen it done to other posters as well. I intend to curb the "Pedantic Police." – Wesley Long Aug 9 '14 at 22:23
  • @WesleyLong I agree that freelancing belongs in the Workplace. Self-employed is still employed, except that people pay additional taxes for being self-employed. – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 9 '14 at 22:29
  • @WesleyLong I had several run-ins with the Pedantic Police in the first month I participated in the Workplace but I have to say that I have had no harassment on the subject since. I have been asked occasionally to "back it up" and I have always complied, apparently to everyone's satisfaction. I've gotten much better at giving thorough answers so these demands are few and far between, as far as I am concerned. But definitely, spending 45 minutes on an answer for which I had originally budgeted 15 minutes - that's no fun when it happens. I call it an occasional cost of doing business :) – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 9 '14 at 22:39
  • @WesleyLong I don't think you answered my questions on how you'd handle those whose views are abhorrent or who are just plain lying in my face in the face of all evidence. Recently, I got flak for excessive commenting because the OP, a perfectionist with a penchant for panic attacks, took exception to the fact that I had blamed his perfectionism for his panic attacks and launched a series of comments denying the link, which I subsequently documented. In other words, he was lying. At other times, it was some commenters who were getting an orgasm out of being argumentative. – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 9 '14 at 22:48
  • @WesleyLong I have the right to defend my answers EACH time they are challenged. And if I get 50 comments challenging them, I have the right to respond 50 times to these comments. – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 9 '14 at 22:50
  • @WesleyLong You hang around this site long enough and you'll realize that there are no saints - not among the OP's, not among the answer providers, not among the commenters, not among the moderators and the moderator wannabees. I've gotten flak from moderation for saying that OP's were part of the problem and sometimes, that they WERE the problem. While I understand that ad hominem attacks are to be avoided, I'll point out that we are not in church. – Vietnhi Phuvan Aug 9 '14 at 22:58

This election is complete.