Traditionally sites have 2-3 moderators and start with pro-tems, etc. However, the sites often don't have much need for extra policing for subjective arguments.

I'm going to propose that this site have potentially a different moderation model, in that we probably need people who are experienced in dealing with problematic users to assist in one area, but for the regular site moderation to be open to new moderators. Possibly a 2+2 instead of 2-3 "green" moderators (eh, nowadays it seems most sites get one veteran and two green, but I don't keep stats or anything).

This post is about discussion of what are the risks of not having experienced mods versus the potential to run this site right into the ground. It's very apparent that some questions can have good objective answers, but we as a community need to foster all questions to trend towards objective answers.

This is going to require experienced posters from all sites participating especially for the first few months to ensure all questions are of a high quality, rewriting them as often as possible to show people how to ask. We need to all strive to keep the site of a higher quality.

I'm not abdicating the need for a strong core community, I'm quite passionate about that in fact. What I'm asking is does this community need experienced moderators in addition to green moderators from the first day, or am I overthinking things?

  • We should also have moderators that have at least a bit of computer experience. There's no point in having someone with power on here who doesn't know what he/she is talking about.
    – Rajiv
    Feb 5, 2014 at 0:17
  • 2
    I would agree here. Also, such a site might need more mods: A lot of mod time goes away in reading/writing meta posts, and this site may have an extra dosage of them. It similarly goes into reading long Q&As and discussions; which again might be more prominent on the site. Then again, this site has a good dose of meta-active users/moderators who might be able to help reduce the load from that. Feb 5, 2014 at 3:00
  • You mean you don't trust us? :O
    – Seth
    Feb 5, 2014 at 6:27
  • @jcolebrand, Please explain what's "green" moderator and what's the difference between green and vet.
    – Pacerier
    May 21, 2015 at 9:33
  • @Pacerier the comment was a point in time comment, so it's unlikely to be valid today. However, in this case, a green moderator is one who has had no experience in moderating a StackExchange site. I feel like this is a normal English phrase, do we need to ask the question on English Language & Usage?
    – jcolebrand
    May 21, 2015 at 15:03
  • @jcolebrand, I'd thought you were referring to different types of moderators.
    – Pacerier
    May 24, 2015 at 13:28
  • I pose my question again: Is this convention so unusual that we should ask on English Language & Usage?
    – jcolebrand
    May 26, 2015 at 16:24

2 Answers 2


You're over thinking things to a degree, but I see where you're going with it. I think for the moderation team to be as effective as they could be, some should be well versed on historically, why we didn't permit these types of questions on our sites. But, this only leads to them knowing the most important thing ...

What problem were we trying to solve by disallowing them?

That, I think, is an education that we're all going to get during the course of the private beta. Some of the old timers, myself included, are going to find themselves transported back to the very early days of Stack Overflow and re-examining decisions that we made. Others are going to get a first hand view of that time, as shown by examples that are bound to come up here.

I will say that quite a bit of thought is going to go into our moderator selection, we're going to need people that have no problem with, and preferably some experience with, making unpopular decisions for the good of the site. We're going to want people that understand how and why we arrived at some of our philosophical approaches to building sites.

For now, you've got us - the community team. We're comprised of some of the most seasoned mods on the network, and the community itself is full of moderators from other sites. As I noted in the introductory ground rules, if any community is going to pull this off, it will be this community - which makes one kind of expect that we shouldn't need too much moderation to begin with.

We'll see :)

  • 1
    Now, pick me? :D
    – jcolebrand
    Feb 5, 2014 at 16:23
  • As I'd see, that they were 'shopping' questions, and that they would go obsolete. Software req questions were sort of gradually shunned by the userbase, rather than being something we had banned from the getgo. Feb 7, 2014 at 5:09

These are a lot of assumptions.

This is day one on this site and we have no idea how well it is going to work. In the next days/weeks we will see if we need aditional moderation or not.

I like to think positive - it could work just fine. Let's see how it goes first.

  • 1
    You're right. But if we don't immediately set the right tone, from day one, we're going to end up floundering.
    – jcolebrand
    Feb 4, 2014 at 23:17

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