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2022 Moderator Election

nomination began
Aug 8, 2022 at 20:00
election began
Aug 15, 2022 at 20:00
election ended
Aug 23, 2022 at 20:00
candidates
5
positions
3

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

Full elections have three phases and an optional fourth phase (Primary):

  1. Question Collection
  2. Nomination
  3. Primary
  4. 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. How would you deal with answers that do contain correct and relevant information but don't meet your personal quality standard (maybe because the answer is very short or the grammar is very bad)?

[Answer 3 here]

  1. We sometimes get questions or answers that contain well-intentioned but poor (and possibly harmful) medical advice for pets. How should these be handled?

[Answer 4 here]

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

[Answer 5 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 6 here]

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?

[Answer 7 here]

Journeyman Geek

Hi - I'm a long time user (My account's 8 years 8 months old), former (and future) dog owner and I moderate elsewhere on the network. While I'm not exactly a subject matter expert I've a good footing in moderation and have worked with previous and current moderators here as well as across the network.

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?

Depends on why - especially in a small community, there's often a danger of someone who contributes content, but 'breaks' the community. Other times someone may have the best intentions.

I'd say taking an even handed approach - a high reputation user should be kept to the same standards as anyone would be important. If the user's basically being the source of the problem, using the tools at hand to try to improve the user's behavior is essential

I don't believe that being a good poster in on itself means you're a good member of the community, and vise versa so - if someone's creating problems there might be a need to let them know what's ok and what's not, and try to get them on a better footing for the community.

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

Ping em on mod chat and have a word, and try to work out what context either of us have missed. Quite often one finds other moderators may have a different perspective on things and that its probably better to work out why a post should and shouldn't stay

  1. How would you deal with answers that do contain correct and relevant information but don't meet your personal quality standard (maybe because the answer is very short or the grammar is very bad)?

Well poor grammar is fixable, we have edits after all. If its correct, relevant but needs more polish or a bit more content, I'd comment appropriately and ask.

  1. We sometimes get questions or answers that contain well-intentioned but poor (and possibly harmful) medical advice for pets. How should these be handled?

That's generally a tricky thing. For something that seems misinformed but 'harmless' - I'd say comments would be a useful way to point out, especially if one is familiar with the field. In some ways the comments can be as educational as an answer.

For something that could clearly cause *potential* harm - I'd be inclined to delete, discuss it with fellow mods and leave it deleted if it can cause harm

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

Well - I've moderated 2 larger sites (Super User and Meta.Stackexchange) and previously was a moderator pro-tem at software recommendations. We tend to the community, we listen and try to work things out. In my specific case, quite often I've tried to voice out the issues my communties have to the company, with various levels of success.

While Pets has little cross-pollination with other sites we often end up working with other mods, where applicable and the CMs for problems across sites.

I've always had a personal philosophy that people ought to be able to find and talk to their mods, so hanging out on my site chatrooms and meta has always been an essential part of what I believe a moderator workflow should include

  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've been a moderator on the network since 2014. I can't say my record has been spotless but at the end of the day - we own our actions and choices. Heavy lies the crown, so to speak, but its the same head under it. I think the fundamentals of what we should do as a user and a moderator aren't that different and to be honest, as a fairly high profile network user - my reputation and my diamonds are going to be attached to everything I say. I'm used to it.

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?

Well I'm not a 5K user - as an ex-dog owner, I don't have much to ask, and I do try to answer stuff as the opportunities arise. I have been a mod for years and know what it entails. In a sense - Its a short cut to getting to 5K for me, and getting a moderator with fair bit of network experience for the site.

While I don't drop in every day - I'm mostly hanging around pets chat, I do check in periodically and would if elected drop in regularly.

Aethalides

I think I am patient and fair and have enough life experience to realise that it is ok for other people to have different views. Even if those are radically different from my own.

Focus on the message and less on the messenger whenever possible.

I do not condone violence of any kind and you can expect me to be civil in all dealings.

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?

Flags and arguments are just that. A warning to investigate, and there isn't anything wrong with that on paper. Investigate and if necessary take action

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

Like in any marriage, the best solution is to keep talking. But if I feel personally affronted by this, perhaps I should go for a walk before talking to my colleague. It is very easy to step on someone's toes unintentionally, so bearing that in mind, friendly and professional communication is the way forward.

  1. How would you deal with answers that do contain correct and relevant information but don't meet your personal quality standard (maybe because the answer is very short or the grammar is very bad)?

If it is readable, then it's fine. However, not everyone has the same skill level in reading English, so to accommodate everyone it makes more sense for it to be correct. Without wanting to be overbearing one can suggest certain edits. But I would not condone personal attacks because the spelling or grammar is a bit off

  1. We sometimes get questions or answers that contain well-intentioned but poor (and possibly harmful) medical advice for pets. How should these be handled?

In my opinion, the first lines of many answers regarding with pets should be that every pet is different and you should always consult with a vet before following any of the advice. However, if the information in the answer is patently dangerous (e.g. recommending chocolate for dogs), In my opinion swift action is needed and the answer should be unpublished. For less egregious situations it feels more like personal opinion, and my feeling is a disclaimer should be put on those (see first part of this answer)

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

As little as possible and just as much as needed.

  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?

We're all here to learn, in spite of everything being viewed under a magnifying glass, I am certain I have never done anything on this platform that goes against my own or your policies and rules

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?

I'm not interested in reaching this or that arbitrary milestone. When I feel I can contribute to something that's all the reward I need.

C.Koca

Hi, I am C.Koca. I have been around here for almost three years now. I set up my first SE account six years ago. I am usually around and very responsive. My knowledge on pets is mostly about stray animals and behaviour of cats.

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?

As a general answer, nobody really changes anyone's opinion through online discussions, so the argumentation is usually for the sake of audience. Thus, I would remove the extensive comments to a chat, away from public eyes. I believe most online arguments would fizzle when no one follows it.

Furthermore, high reputation users are not only above the rules of conduct, but also they have been around longer to understand how SE works. Therefore, I wouldn't look away, especially if they are hostile to a new user.

The exact response depends on the person, argument, number of flags from the community and the frequency of the events. I would consult with other mods to handle people who frequently disrupt the community.

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

I am an open-happy user, but everyone has their own understanding of how SE should work. In this SE, I believe the only time mod hammering questions is useful is regarding the questions asking about a situation where urgent veterinary attention is required. They need to be closed fast, to prevent dissemination of misleading or harmful information. For other questions, I would prefer the community to moderate itself.

If I am frequently at odds with another mod, I would consult other mods about whether his/her perception of Pets.SE is more fitting than my own perception and adjust my actions accordingly. But I would never mod hammer a question open, closed by another mod.

To help you extrapolate what I would do in such a situation, I want to describe my use of this SE, as a regular user. During my time here, I never undeleted a question or an answer that another user deleted. Only once, I disagreed with deletion of an answer and contacted the person. After hearing his/her point, I decided that it is not that important to take an action. I believe communication solves such issues most of the time.

  1. How would you deal with answers that do contain correct and relevant information but don't meet your personal quality standard (maybe because the answer is very short or the grammar is very bad)?

Pets.SE is not short of dedicated editors, even after Lila is incommunicado. I would fix the grammar myself or assume that some other user would do so. For short answers, I would attach a comment stating that some more information might be useful. We have a lot of good answers on this site, so sending a few links as examples might also help.

  1. We sometimes get questions or answers that contain well-intentioned but poor (and possibly harmful) medical advice for pets. How should these be handled?

As I explained above, questions asking about situations where urgent veterinary care is required should be closed. Even in situations where the askers don't have access to a vet, they should have access to calling a vet. So, I wouldn't object to closing these questions via mod hammering and I might close them myself.

For comments/answers, I would let "Cunningham's Law" to run its process. Obviously wrong answers would attract plenty of downvotes and comments. The community would therefore moderate itself.

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

I believe mods are around as a last resort, where community cannot moderate itself. Ideally, there should be no mods. In this SE, I don't recall any splits in the community, which would require a mod intervention, so I believe the less visible mods are, the better it is.

Still, on internet, hiding behind the anonymity curtain, some toxic people might disrupt communities. Sexist/racist/xenophobic comments by vandals need to be removed fast to maintain our community. For our SE, answers/comments wishing harm on the posters which treated their animals not well according to the vandals need to be removed fast. I observed that mods mostly make sure that as few people as possible are subjected to such actions.

  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 am generally proud of my answers. I don't answer questions which I am not sure of and I take the necessary time to compose a good answer. I also never engaged in unconstructive arguments. So, I wouldn't feel any different with the diamond.

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?

I like to be involved in causes that I believe in. Pets.SE has helped a lot of people. It allowed me both to receive help and to help others. As a mod, I would be continuing doing so. I have most of the mod privileges anyway, so it wouldn't really be much different for me.

Harry V.

I'm Harry, I've been a moderator on Pets since 2019 and a moderator on another small SE site since a few years before that. I have a good handle on the moderation needs of this site and would like to continue as a moderator.

I am a veterinarian in small animal general practice. Fortunately most of Pets' content is very positive, but my training helps me spot poor veterinary advice that may need moderator intervention.

And I mustn't forget to mention my pets — I am proud dad of three lovely cats, who have me well trained to do their bidding.

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?

Usually I will start by just alerting them of the problem with a comment. If the user turns confrontational then I try to give a bit of time to cool off before taking further action. Real problem comments are deleted, which most often solves the problem. Only rarely on Pets does it escalate to a point requiring private messages or 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 alert the other mod in our private mod chatroom to understand their reasoning. I've never had any conflict with another mod that couldn't be resolved with a simple chat.

  1. How would you deal with answers that do contain correct and relevant information but don't meet your personal quality standard (maybe because the answer is very short or the grammar is very bad)?

Edit if possible. Downvote if poor quality - this is important. We get a lot of flags for poor quality answers but very few have any downvotes, and I am not sure why. These posts can be converted to comments if too short and really just comment material. I do not think this is generally a place that moderators otherwise need to intervene — regular users can moderate these types of concerns through the review queues, etc.

  1. We sometimes get questions or answers that contain well-intentioned but poor (and possibly harmful) medical advice for pets. How should these be handled?

Downvote to start. I will usually leave a comment initially to alert the user and any readers of the post that I think this is poor advice. Consult with the other mods in private chat. Only rarely will I feel the the to delete an answer if the poster does not come back to edit or discuss further, and if I think it is really going to harm pets if others follow that advice.

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

Most of the work of mods is in the background. Mods are there to take care of the spam, rude or abusive users, or harmful content. The community should and can take care of most of the rest.

As a moderator, I check in on the site at least twice most days. There are usually one or two flags to take care of each time I log in. I will admit that the veterinary profession as a whole has been overwhelmed lately — far more pets need to be seen than can be. This has limited the time I have spent answering questions on Pets lately, but I still regularly check to make sure there is nothing on Pets that needs immediate attention.

  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've had a diamond by my name for 3 years, and I have never contributed any content that I feel would not be appropriate for a moderator to say.

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?

I value this community and the good it does for animals, and want to do as much as I can to help that.

Elmy

I've been a member of Pets for 4 years and a mod for 2. This site and its community are very dear to me because we not only help people here, but animals as well.

My experience with a problematic dog and a very sensitive cat forced me to learn a lot about the body language, behavior and needs of my pets. I like sharing this knowledge with others in similar situations and hope to improve their lives and that of their pets.

In general I deem the people using this site as more important than sticking strictly to the rules. I try helping new users by explaining how to improve their posts. However, I do not tolerate bigotry, discrimination or intolerance of any kind. Everyone coming to Pets.SE should feel safe, respected and heard, but only to the extend that your words don't infringe on the safety and respect of other users.

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 first try discussing this with the user in a private chat, so they don't feel exposed or defensive. I would try making them see the cause of the problem or at least describe it from my point of view. If the issue doesn't improve after a while, I give them a fair warning about the consequences of their actions. However, if the user insults or threatens people or otherwise grossly violates the Code of Conduct, they get banned first before getting a chance to prove that they changed.

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

There's the mod chat for that. I would like to discuss the issue with the other mods and come to a consensus before taking any other action.

  1. How would you deal with answers that do contain correct and relevant information but don't meet your personal quality standard (maybe because the answer is very short or the grammar is very bad)?

I don't like deleting relevant information, even if the quality isn't optimal. If it's something easily fixable like bad grammar or formatting, I would fix it myself, if my time allows. Usually I also leave a comment for the author explaining the problem and how they could improve their post. Many are encouraged by the prospect of earning more reputation points and a friendly word often achieves more than simply deleting a post.

  1. We sometimes get questions or answers that contain well-intentioned but poor (and possibly harmful) medical advice for pets. How should these be handled?

This is a matter where a simple comment may not be enough. Any information posted on Pets.SE will potentially stay visible until this site ceases to exist. Therefore harmful information mustn't be the first thing visitors see on our site. If I know about a correct answer to the same question, I would close the post as duplicate. If it isn't duplicated, I would first downvote the harmful answer and upvote the correct answer instead (if it exists) or write one myself if I can find the relevant information. I would also consider deleting grossly negligent answers.

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

As the name implies, we moderate. Whenever a discussion (in posts, comments or chat) gets out of hand, we should intervene and make sure that things stay civilized. I don't think that moderators should define the site, instead they should represent and serve the community. That means that if my personal opinion differs from the consensus of the community, I have to subordinate my personal feelings and opinions and act as the official voice of the community.

  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?

That doesn't make a difference to me. I've already been a moderator for several years and even before that time I was always mindful of my posts.

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?

This is another point that makes no difference to me. As an active member of Pets I had earned moderator privileges due to my reputation long before I was elected as a mod.

This election is over.