I just got this by email:

We noticed that you haven’t been active in moderating Mathematics Educators Stack Exchange over the last 4 months. That’s nothing for you to be overly concerned about - this is just an automated message letting you know that the Community Team is available to help you with any concerns you might have.

Sometimes life happens, and other interests take priority over site moderator duties. That’s no problem at all. We just wanted to make sure you were aware that we have an Absentee Moderator policy in which we remove a moderator's privileges when they have been inactive for 6 months.

I didn't think it had been 4 months, but maybe... So I went to the review button and approved someone's first post, and commented on a post that might get closed. (I did not want to vote to either close or leave open.) Checking the moderator dashboard, it still says I haven't done anything. Do I have to do extreme things like closing questions to show up as active?

  • $\begingroup$ I'd assume, but do not really know, that it is about actions that show up under matheducators.stackexchange.com/admin?filter=all (the link should be dead for non-mods); the "last activity" is clickable. That being said, it is not really meaningful, since there are hardly any such actions to be taken on the site. $\endgroup$
    – quid
    May 8, 2015 at 23:02
  • $\begingroup$ @jon-ericson, I see you on the staff list. Can you help? I like being a moderator here. I don't do much that's specifically moderator duty, but I'm here, commenting, thinking about it all. $\endgroup$
    – Sue VanHattum Mod
    May 10, 2015 at 0:06
  • $\begingroup$ The at-ping will not notify. I am sure some staff-member will comment eventually, likely Jon. Only, it is weekend, so it might take a while. You could send Jon an email or ask in moderator chat, too. $\endgroup$
    – quid
    May 10, 2015 at 0:18

1 Answer 1


The moderator tracking statistics are geared toward sites like Stack Overflow where lots of moderation is required. As a result, the automated email doesn't take into account actual moderating activity on a smaller site, such as this one. The primary thing our statistics look at is whether you've handled any flags since these are the exceptions moderators are tasked with handling. When a site doesn't have a lot of flags (Mathematics Educators has had 9 in the last month) we don't often have a way to tell if you are acting as a moderator or a regular user. We have no real way to measure other roles moderators take on such as site leadership and new user guidance.

We've been putting more thought into how we can monitor the health of low activity sites. One of the signals we are considering is moderator activity. If flags are being handled quickly, the site is probably not being overrun with spam and other nonsense. Over the lifetime of Mathematics Educators, flags are usually handled within a day and often within hours, so that's not a problem here. Looking at the recent self-evaluation, I don't have any concerns about quality either. As a team1, you and quid are doing a great job here. So you can safely ignore the email for now.

For future reference, the following actions update the Last Activity date:

  1. Handling comment flags
  2. Handling moderator attention flags
  3. Deleting posts
  4. Closing posts
  5. Deleting comments

Unfortunately reviews don't count unless you do one of those things along the way.

  1. Typically we prefer three moderators, but since one of the original team stepped down we've only had two. I'd like to add another person, but there's no real urgency.
  • $\begingroup$ As long as there is no automatic action on this, I'm fine. Thanks. $\endgroup$
    – Sue VanHattum Mod
    May 11, 2015 at 21:37

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