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


English Language Learners Stack Exchange is scheduled for an election next week, 2022-08-01. In connection with that, 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.

Here’s how it’ll work:

  • Until the nomination phase, (so, until 2022-08-01 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.

  • If your question contains a link, please use the syntax of [text](link), as that will make it easier for transcribing for the finished questionnaire.

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

  • We, the Community Team, will be providing a small selection of generic questions. The following two questions are guaranteed to be included:

    • 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?
  • The community team may also include the following three questions if the community doesn’t supply enough questions.

    • 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?
  • At the start of the nomination 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. We exclude any suggested questions that are negatively scored.

    • We will post the final questionnaire on the Election page. Candidates will have the option to fill out the questionnaire, and their answers will appear beneath their intro statements.
    • 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 process, feel free to post as a comment here.

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  • Can't wait to see the new moderator!!! :3 Also is the usual mod count 3?
    – DialFrost
    Jul 27 at 0:40
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    @DialFrost The smallest sites have 3 mods, larger sites have more (with Stack Overflow having the most, 25), and in rare cases mods leave so there's fewer than 3 (Writing SE circa 2019–2020 had 0 mods). By the way, this is an election for two new mods, so I think you meant to use the plural in your first sentence :)
    – Laurel Mod
    Jul 27 at 0:52

18 Answers 18

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On ELL, many regular users continue to post questions that show little to no research and quote expressions and sentence fragments from unattributed sources.

As a moderator what could you do to encourage users (old and new) to provide context and greater details in their questions (and answers)?

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  • I can understand that may be the case, but I would also like the moderators or actually anyone to make an exception for case as such. @Mari-LouA what is your opinion? Jul 29 at 18:28
  • @InanimateBeing What is the problem, exactly? You quoted and attributed the source correctly, you also explained your confusion. But you didn't share your research. If you googled the phrase, did you realise that "save" could not be a typo of "same"? There's more effort in your post than the majority of questions posted on ELL.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jul 30 at 6:39
  • I wanted to specifically direct the focus on "research" as it is subjective and sometimes (like the linked post in above comment) not even known whether, out of the given context, if that's the problem or not. But, please note, this is (I assume) very very rare but happens still. Jul 30 at 6:44
7

ELL gets a lot of questions that seem to be ones we have answered many times before or which have been asked and answered on ELU or other places on the Internet. Do you have any ideas or thoughts you would like to share about the number of "duplicate" questions ELL gets and how much searching someone should be expected to do before asking a question?

0
6

Under which circumstances would you, as a moderator, delete an on-topic answer that has attracted one or more upvotes?

6

What is your view on editing a question to correct grammar and style issues? Do you think we should edit answers differently from the way we edit questions?

6

Have you ever broken a rule on Stack Exchange and did you get caught? If you did break a rule (whether or not you were caught), how does that experience affect how you would go about enforcing Stack Exchange rules and policies?

If you haven't broken any rules, do you think someone who got away with breaking a rule in the past (but is currently a member in good standing) should be excluded from being a moderator? Why or why not?

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  • I'm adding this one, even though a lot of people didn't like it when I added it on EL&U. I'm also going to copy part of a comment I left there to explain why I would like candidates to answer it...
    – ColleenV
    Jul 26 at 17:08
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    Some things are obviously rules (anything in the TOS or CoC), some things are obviously guidelines (write to the best of your ability), and some things are rules to some of us and guidelines to others (don't answer in comments). Some people like rules that have little room for misinterpretation and prefer punitive enforcement; others prefer a more judgement-based, empathetic approach. Everyone falls in a slightly different place on that spectrum and should have enough info to be able to choose the candidate that matches their view.
    – ColleenV
    Jul 26 at 17:09
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    @Mari-LouA "I would hope the current moderators make sure that no such user be allowed to self-nominate themself." Do the current mods have a veto over nominations for the upcoming elections? Can they prevent a person whose past actions they disapprove of from being on the ballot? I would think not.
    – David Siegel Mod
    Jul 28 at 15:29
  • @DavidSiegel the moderators have no veto, and they cannot prevent anyone from self-nominating themself but I would hope, this time, if they do raise concerns about a candidate their voices will be heard and their misgivings handled by SE staff before the election ends. Is that an unreasonable request?
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jul 28 at 19:35
  • @Mari-LouA I did see your comment about removing your name from the title of the meta post I write, but it was closed before I could do anything (saw it during an observed lesson. We're having an inspection right now). However, I did not see the comment that ColleenV linked to underneath her answer, wherever that's now gone. It never pinged me - otherwise I'd have deleted it! Aug 2 at 21:20
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    @Araucaria-Nothereanymore. The question got deleted, in the end it was for the best. I don't think users really care that much about moderators until a post of theirs gets downvoted and/or closed. As we know, participation on meta is minimal, very few hi-rep users seem to bother, which is a shame and a missed opportunity for getting to know one another a bit better. I just hope that Jesse Steele doesn't get elected. Anyone would be better fit than him.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Aug 2 at 22:17
  • @Araucaria-Nothereanymore. I figured you were busy and missed it, so I flagged for a mod to handle it. Then Mari-LouA & I cleaned up our comments not realizing you hadn’t seen them…
    – ColleenV
    Aug 3 at 2:14
4

What is your favourite ELL question and/or answer? Why?

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What is your view on moderating comments? Do you consider comments ephemeral or do you feel certain comments should be retained? Under what circumstances do you think comments should be deleted or moved to a chat room?

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Sometimes people post comments on ELL that attempt to answer a question, in whole or in part. How would you handle these comments?

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Which of your contributions to ELL Meta do you feel best exemplifies your style as a moderator?

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  • Yes! Do you think mods should take a backseat or use a hands-on approach?
    – Mari-Lou A
    Jul 27 at 9:05
  • @Mari-LouA interesting question. As far as the review queues I think it is best to leave it to the community hoping for the wisdom of crowds. Rapid intervention in cases of abuse may necessitate a more proactive stance.
    – mdewey
    Jul 27 at 12:21
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How well do you tend to get along with people on the site? In particular, what do you do when you feel a comment thread you're involved in is going south?

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Do you have any thoughts you would like to share about the relationship between ELL and ELU or the migration path from ELU to ELL? In the past there have been discussions about the difference between the two sites, what sorts of questions belong on each site and complaints about low quality migrations.

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Link to the post on ELL you’re most proud of contributing (yours), and tell us why.

The question is copied from a deleted post (only visible to 10k users) by Dan Bron

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Do you visit MSE, the Stack Exchange Meta site, and are you aware of its goings on?

As an elected moderator with added responsibilities; do you plan to focus your attention solely on ELL? Why or why not?

2

What are your criteria for what makes a good question? What qualities cause you to upvote questions? What qualities might cause you to downvote a question?

1

What is your view of a moderator's relationship to the company? The moderator agreement states:

I will accept additional guidance given by members of the Stack Exchange, Inc. Community Team and Senior Leadership Team, whether in response to questions, concerns or discussions regarding existing network-wide policies.

If there is a conflict between the guidance you receive from the company and what the community has expressed it wants, how will you handle it?

1

ELL's main chat room doesn't have much activity. What is your view of Stack Exchange chat? Do you think we should try to increase activity in our chat room? If so, what do you think we should try?

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Do you think owning multiple accounts on one platform is justifiable–why? If you were elected, would you consider deleting or permanently suspending any multiple accounts you may have on ELL?

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  • 2
    There are legitimate uses of multiple accounts, bur they do not inclufe upyoting one's posts, nor trying to gain an advantage in discussion by seeming to be multiple people, As it happens I have never used ,multiple accounts on SE
    – David Siegel Mod
    Jul 29 at 2:48
-2

What ELL cliques do you consider yourself a part of? In what ways do ELL cliques hurt and/or help the site?

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  • 4
    Does ELL have cliques? The Q&A format doesn't lend itself well to socializing and nobody uses ELL's chat. There are also a lot of facets of (offline) cliques that don't translate well to online public spaces.
    – Laurel Mod
    Jul 28 at 16:17
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    Can you give me an example of the sort of answer you expect? Is it "I'm in the Followers of Fumblefingers clique"? Or are you expecting something more like "I'm a member of the "downvotes are bad" party? (And I'm not picking on Fumblefingers, I just know they're a good sport and probably wouldn't mind being used in my example ;))
    – ColleenV
    Jul 28 at 17:05
  • @ColleenV - I can probably best support with with examples. I will try to clarify in a bit. Jul 28 at 17:12

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