- Many moderator duties concern the removal of low quality content. Aside from this, what will you do to facilitate the creation of high
By helping to create a welcoming atmosphere that helps a teacher/educator feel comfortable engaging. I agree with Chris that as a group we can do a better job editing a question that’s borderline into one that might be a good on topic one. As I cite in an upcoming response, we are at 1.1 questions per day. Anything we can do to turn a borderline question into an on-topic one is a positive. Encouraging members to recruit peers would also be a priority. Content comes from members, and a strong, growing membership will result in both more and better content.
- Have you ever been suspended from this site or another StackExchange site? If so, please provide a description of the
situation that led to the suspension, and how you have reacted to it.
Would you have suspended a user for a similar behavior today?
Fortunately, no. As a mod on Money.SE, I’ve issued suspensions for failing the “be nice” suggestion. Minor snarky answers or comments get deleted or edited out. A frequent “that was stupid” or “what did you expect? serves you right” gets warnings first, then a suspension. Even then, there’s a gray area, where a fellow mod might say he’s ready to suspend, and I don’t object, but might not have done it myself. I am open to the fact that the line is not precise.
- Imagine a time in which the site has become divided between two groups, each of whom desire a future which is anathema to the other.
The status quo is unstable; it is all but guaranteed that one group
will be seen as ascendant and the other will leave in frustration.
And... You've been elected to serve both groups. How might you
approach such a situation? If you would seek compromise, how could you
hope to garner agreement from enough people to make it work?
“All but Guaranteed” does not equal “Guaranteed”. In Avengers: Infinity War, Dr Strange tells Tony (Iron Man) Stark that he’s looked into 14,000,605 possible futures and it’s only in one that the Avengers are successful. Similarly, I’d suggest that there’s always a solution and I’d seek to find it. With some exception, of course, those who love math tend to be logical people. I’d first note the fact that MESE is still in Beta, we haven’t graduated. MESE was split off from the main Math site as there was an important niche that was getting lost in the larger site. Graduation requires 10 questions per day, and we are currently at 1.1. (vs the 500+ of the Math stack). We can’t afford to have a valuable topic/direction be ostracized from this stack. Depending on what the exact issue is, I’d suggest that they visit the site while ignoring or searching on the tags that match up with their own view and area of interest. A (probably bad) analogy would be if there weren’t enough interest in any one religion stack, but religion, all of them, in one stack that had traffic. If you are a (particular religion) with no interest in others, just filter on your tag, and it looks like a focused stack. As mods, we need to keep the ‘ascendant’ focus from bullying or treating the others unkindly. In reality, we’d need to see the details emerge, and keep the situation from getting out of control.
- Why do you want to be a moderator? What is your motivation for running in this election?
I’ve been a frequent visitor since the start. I think the my existing mod experience will be an asset while at the same time I acknowledge that each stack does have its own personality. My real life experience is in my profile, working at the high school level these past 6 years. My own satisfaction comes from the help I am able to give others, and making a real difference in my students lives as I noted in my self-nomination. If sharing my love of math with a freshman (and three subsequents years of weekly interaction) resulting in a "thank-you I am going to college and pursuing a STEM field career” is considered bragging, that’s fine.
I’d also encourage members who maintain the blank “air of mystery” profile to update it, as it’s useful to know member’s backgrounds when engaging. As a current mod, I can commit to making the time to visit and perform necessary mod duties. In theory, the stacks should be mostly self-moderating, in reality, some intervention is needed.
- How will you deal with enforcing policies that you disagree with, if you are elected as a moderator?
Hopefully, members that become regular visitors, and especially those who aspire to be mods, have a general agreement that the style of the stacks and each on topic list is to their liking. No one would tend to stay long if they are visiting for another reason. That said, it’s important to keep an open mind. It’s not up to an individual mod to force their own approach, in fact, I think that would be disruptive. Out of context, from another candidate “but would doubtless shift the moderation in the direction of my preferences,” seems bad. But the referenced policies were appropriate, and the implication was just about enforcement. For MESE, I feel that the Help page doesn’t so much need any changes, per se, just clarification, i.e. more specifics. I recently participated in voting to close for a particular question, but the help page on topic list didn’t really offer anything to cite as support for that decision. As a mod, I’d make use of Meta discussion to help create an on topic help page that better does this. And in hindsight, I’d give more thought to how the question might be edited to become welcome than in justifying its closure.
- 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 am a believer that more (if not most) issues arise from comments than from most Q&A. Comments have a limited use, to request clarification, to offer a bit of help (suggesting detail to edit in), or to cite an error. My experience is that if a member goes on in comments, they should be encouraged to post their own answer. When a disruptive member starts to cite censorship, it might take some time and patience to deliver the message, “This stack is about…. and not a discussion board” It takes a member far more energy to keep ranting that it does a mod to hit ‘delete’. Valid concerns should be addressed via Meta or Chat. My own observation is that the chat room gets very limited use. To this issue, I find it curious that each stack has its own personality. On Money.SE, I try with my fellow mods to strike a balance, the 20+ comments often sent to chat, the helpful ones that are used to prompt an edit can be deleted once addressed. Some other may just remain.
- How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc a question that you feel shouldn't have been?
I’d hope to be able to ask in the mod’s chat room for a reason, and as the new member of the team, defer gracefully. From my own mod experience, I am very aware of gray. There’s enough of that area that some fraction of our actions won’t be unanimous, and that’s ok. In general, my approach is to mod-close questions that are black/white, but if it appears questionable, let the wisdom of the crowd rule, and let members decide (while still referring back to an attempt to edit to help make it welcome.