2017 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 May 23 '17 at 20:00.

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

2,485 voters were eligible, 978 visited the site during the election, 745 visited the election page, and 397 voted


I've been in Puzzling for a little over a year. Right now I'm the fourth-highest-rep user here, for what little that's worth.

Why I should (maybe) be a moderator

I'm an active community member and have a good idea of how things work (and are meant to) around here. I'm a room owner in the Sphinx's Lair and don't think anyone has regretted voting for that.

I'm intelligent, sensible, well-spoken, and nice. Also, exceptionally modest.

Timezone diversity: I'm in the UK.

Why I shouldn't (maybe) be a moderator

I have, so far, never posted a puzzle here. So beware of equating value with reputation :-).

I am only moderately active in patrolling review queues and the like. (In fairness, I think that may be partly a matter of timezones.)

I don't know how much time I can commit to moderating. I am around, though not necessarily very active, on Puzzling for many hours of most days, but being around isn't the same as being active. I have a job and a family, and frequently they have to take priority.

  • $\begingroup$ Having never posted a question on either the Main Site or Meta, how would you respond to critics claims that you are unaware of fully half of the workings of the site? $\endgroup$ – Sconibulus May 11 '17 at 17:34
  • $\begingroup$ I would respond (1) that as regards the mechanics of the thing, I have posted questions on other SE sites; (2) that as regards the local culture here in Puzzling, I have a pretty good idea of it by observation; and (3) beyond that, that it's a fair cop and that anyone who prefers not to vote for me on those grounds is well within their rights. $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan May 11 '17 at 17:40
  • $\begingroup$ Gareth is very levelheaded and an experienced puzzler. From my many conversations with him, I am confident that he would moderate Puzzling with dedication and care. $\endgroup$ – Deusovi May 14 '17 at 22:17
  • $\begingroup$ Why does being "well-spoken" suggest you would perform well as a mod? I've only heard the word used to mean speaks with a middle-class or posh accent, not to mean articulate. I realise you are probably joking, but it's not really that funny because being "well-spoken" is often wrongly thought of by those who are "well-spoken" as an indicator of intelligence, education, and decency. But about the only function for which it helps to qualify someone is a role in persuading others who speak with a similar accent, given that many find it hard to accept advice offered in a lower-class accent. $\endgroup$ – user33579 May 15 '17 at 9:35
  • $\begingroup$ @TheEarth I meant something like "polite and articulate". There is a very tight character limit on nomination text, so I couldn't go into more detail. I'm sorry if what I wrote brought back bad memories of class discrimination or anything of the sort. (As it happens, I do speak with an upper-middle-class British accent. Not by choice; there are others I'd prefer. But I dare say it's brought me undeserved advantages from time to time. Fortunately, on the internet no one can hear accents.) $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan May 15 '17 at 10:32

Version 2 of my intro (original here) ...
only 7½ months ago I stumbled across Puzzling and felt right at home;
the great riddles, the fun wordplay exercises, the intricate puzzles —
everything appealed to me, and I've been active here ever since!

Relatively new though I am, I think I've amply demonstrated my
unwavering interest and commitment to PSE: the time I spend here, the
badges and reputation I've earned, the contributions I've made here
in adding helpful comments, doing edits and reviews, raising flags, and
of course answering and posing questions, hopefully speak well of me.

Friendly, fair-minded, and funny — I try to be all three. I believe I am
objective and patient, and a good communicator, all qualities I think are
really important for a Moderator to have.

My desire is to give back to this community; I'd be honored to be elected
one of your Moderators. I feel I have shown the commitment to the site and
demonstrated the qualities and character needed to excel in that position.

 2017 Moderator Election Q&A - Questionnaire answers here

  • $\begingroup$ Is this supposed to be a riddle or something? $\endgroup$ – EKons May 11 '17 at 13:51
  • $\begingroup$ The first letters of every line spell a sentence. $\endgroup$ – Gamow May 11 '17 at 15:49
  • $\begingroup$ Huh. You're right. I hadn't even noticed that! $\endgroup$ – Rubio May 11 '17 at 15:53
  • $\begingroup$ I knew it was a puzzle! $\endgroup$ – EKons May 12 '17 at 11:33
  • $\begingroup$ In The Sphinx's Lair, we frequently joke about banning Rubio from various games. However, despite our jokes, he is an experienced puzzler, and a genuinely friendly and dedicated person. I would have no qualms about moderating alongside him. $\endgroup$ – Deusovi May 14 '17 at 22:22


I would like to nominate myself. Why? A few users have encouraged me too and more importantly, I think I could do the job well, and commit a lot to it. There may be more qualified users to take on this role, but I am more than ready to step in.

I don't have experience moderating or a lot of experience with the 10k rep tools, but I do have experience with edits, reviews and the likes, especially over on Arqade where I also hangout.

I am very active in TSL chat, and the Contact room where I participate as a room owner.

With the help of Deusovi (for my sake initially), the Cryptic Workshop room was created and I think rooms similar to that could be made to encourage more collaboration and teaching opportunities among the community.

I would love for the opportunity to support this community and help it grow even more, to give back even more than it has given me in the few months I have been here.

  • $\begingroup$ I'd suggest adding links to the various chat rooms you mention, for those who might not be familiar with them. $\endgroup$ – GentlePurpleRain May 10 '17 at 20:19
  • $\begingroup$ @GentlePurpleRain Done but have to remove content too. $\endgroup$ – n_plum May 10 '17 at 21:09

I have been on Puzzling for over two years, and I participate in a lot of the (usually logic-based) puzzles.

Top answer of over 200, over 2000 reviews (second in every review list at time of writing), and I initiated the Puzzling Tools meta-post.

I own the Research Assistant badge (edit 50 tag wiki's) and Electorate badge (600 votes) amongst others.

I have answered the meta-site questionnaire here.

  • $\begingroup$ @Mithrandir; no, i just hadn't posted it yet. $\endgroup$ – JonMark Perry May 10 '17 at 10:05
  • $\begingroup$ On some other sites, you have cast exactly 600 votes on questions and none on answers. This suggests mindless badge hunting. How do you reconcile such a behaviour with moderatorship? $\endgroup$ – Wrzlprmft May 12 '17 at 11:45
  • $\begingroup$ I now have a very broad mind, and lots of gold badges $\endgroup$ – JonMark Perry May 12 '17 at 13:29
  • $\begingroup$ I am unconvinced that someone who votes purely for the badges and refuses to stop is well-suited to moderatorship. $\endgroup$ – ArtOfCode May 12 '17 at 15:18
  • $\begingroup$ How would you respond to the criticism that your behaviour (both here and on other sites) suggests that you prioritize badge-seeking over actually contributing? $\endgroup$ – Deusovi May 12 '17 at 15:56

I'm Marius.
I've been here for a little over 1 year now.
Since I started, I raised 51 helpful flags, edited 42 posts, I've reviewed over 200 items in most of the review queues (Except late answers and reopen votes. Those are hard to get.)

I've been a moderator on an other SE website for 2.5 years, so I got some experience to help me.
During that time I handled 9k+ flags.
Also, this may look like bragging (and it is a bit) I killed the election on that other SE website.

Here are my answers for the "moderator wannabe questionnaire".

Anything else you want to know about me, just ask.

  • $\begingroup$ You are a moderator at Magento. Do you think that it might affect the time you can devote to this site? $\endgroup$ – Sid May 9 '17 at 19:22
  • $\begingroup$ @Sid. Short answer: No. Long answer: Not significantly. $\endgroup$ – Marius May 9 '17 at 19:23

I don't like introductions; knowing each time, our beloved, excellent community overanalyses moderator elections, and might outright disqualify enthousiasts reiterating all too obvious remarks.

I'm Glorfindel and I'd like to run for moderator. I've been interested in puzzles my entire life, and while not very good at solving or creating them (proof: see above) I enjoy them as much as you do.

I'm already quite active in moderating the site; I'm one of the top First Posts and Late Answers reviewers, even though I have this privilege for less than a year now. My passion for moderation extends to all sites in the Stack Exchange network; I have over 13000 helpful flags and over 33000 reviews across the network. I'm active in Charcoal HQ where we're trying to keep SE free of spam, and it's always a puzzle to come up with new defenses against the spammers.

Puzzling is a small but healthy site, and I'd like it to stay healthy. Hopefully, I can contribute with my network-wide experience and a little touch of humor.

My answers

  • $\begingroup$ (Like fellow Charcoal member Mithrandir, 728 of those helpful flags were automatically cast by SmokeDetector - this compensates for the time I spend helping to configure the system) $\endgroup$ – Glorfindel May 9 '17 at 19:18
  • $\begingroup$ While you're certainly very active in the review queues, I haven't seen you around much on the site other than that. You have quite a low rep score and only 40-odd posts here. Of course rep doesn't bestow mod skills, but it does tend to indicate experience, both with the site as a whole and especially with high-rep tools such as deletion powers. Do you feel you're experienced enough with the main part of this site (actual Q&A) to represent the community well? $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor May 9 '17 at 20:14
  • $\begingroup$ @randal'thor good question. I'm often beaten by other answerers who are better puzzle solvers than me. That's why I read a good deal more posts than I write, and I think I have enough experience for the job. $\endgroup$ – Glorfindel May 10 '17 at 6:58

I'd like to nominate myself. Why? @GentlePurpleRain said to :). Seriously though, I believe that I can do the job well.

I have experience in moderation - I've got over 3300 helpful flags on the network, and I was appointed as a moderator on Literature, (where @Emrakul is also a mod), so I have experience on both sides of the moderation process.

I'm fairly active on meta (currently 3rd by participation), and I'm fairly confident that I know the policies pretty well. (I'm also active on main Meta, and I know the network-wide policies well too.)

I'm also a member of Charcoal - you can read more about that here.

I'd be honored to be elected as a moderator for this site that I enjoy. :)

Here are my questionnaire answers.

  • $\begingroup$ Aw Heck. Why'd you wait until I'd wrote out my answers to the election questions? You'll get my vote dood. $\endgroup$ – Brent Hackers May 9 '17 at 10:02
  • $\begingroup$ I've got to say, even though we haven't been working together long, I'm downright impressed with Mith's modding on Literature. Their mind is in the right place, and they clearly have an intuition for it. $\endgroup$ – Aza May 9 '17 at 11:36
  • $\begingroup$ Note that a large number of those flags were automatically cast by Smokey, around 800, so feel free to not count those if it matters to you. $\endgroup$ – Mithrandir May 9 '17 at 15:58
  • $\begingroup$ If elected, how would you divide your modding time between here and Literature? Do you feel able to give both sites the full amount of attention they deserve? $\endgroup$ – Rand al'Thor May 9 '17 at 19:48
  • $\begingroup$ @randal'thor - see the chat transcript, starting here: chat.stackexchange.com/transcript/message/37278408#37278408 $\endgroup$ – Mithrandir May 9 '17 at 19:50
  • $\begingroup$ Hmmm, looks good :) $\endgroup$ – ABcDexter May 10 '17 at 11:06

I will be honest, I can think of a few people better suited than me to be moderator, but unless they show interest to become a moderator, I am more than up to the challenge and willing to better myself so I can be worthy of the job.

I have been around for a little while and learned a lot. I am not as good as I wish I were at solving puzzles, but I certainly enjoy making some once in a while. I like our small but close community. I would be proud to help our community stay clean and friendly.

I am quite active, fair and hate injustice. I take time to analyze the situation and never take rash decisions. I will be objective and make decisions regardless reputation etc.

It is important to note that I am currently living in Japan and therefore am active while most are asleep. So unless another moderator is already in this time zone, it might be good to have someone for night watch or with the Asian/Australian crowd.

@Emrakul left some big shoes to fill behind, but I am willing to try them on and see if they fit.

Election questionnaire answers

  • $\begingroup$ While there is the positive aspect of being around when other mods may not be able to be active, how do you foresee that impacting your ability to work closely with them to resolve issues that may require more discussion amongst yourselves? $\endgroup$ – n_plum May 9 '17 at 12:30
  • $\begingroup$ @n_palum well, I am awake for over 18 hours so our active time will overlap a bit for sure. Also, messages can always be left in the mod chatroom. $\endgroup$ – stack reader May 9 '17 at 12:39
  • $\begingroup$ @stackreader IMO, you need to start sleeping a little more than that. :) Better for health. $\endgroup$ – Techidiot May 10 '17 at 13:13

This election is complete.