# Notable Stack Exchange news

I plan from time to time to post here a few newsworthy items from meta.SO that aren't tagged [stackexchange] and so don't turn up on the meta-so-for-texnicians tag set. Feel free to join in.

• For the long list see Recent feature changes to Stack Exchange. – Martin Scharrer May 13 '11 at 14:48
• I suggest we change the reporting style of this question to the one of Recent feature changes to Stack Exchange: One answer with the news in reverse chronological order, start another answer when the character limit is reached; limiting the upvoting to only the votes necessary to keep the posts in order seems sensible. This way the most recent news will always be displayed first and not the month-old news that somehow gathered the highest number of votes. – doncherry Sep 3 '11 at 17:51
• Second (minor) suggestion: When a new badge is introduced, let's make sure the name of the badge is spelled out in (machine-readable) text so the news can be found via text search. (I'm not sure if using appropriate "alt"-text suffices here) – doncherry Sep 3 '11 at 17:53

You can vote 40 times now, provided at least 10 of your votes are on questions.

There is also a new badge you can get, for using these extra votes: the Vox Populi badge. You can be the first to earn it, if you are fast enough.

As Martin Tapankov just pointed out in the chat, downvotes on questions do no longer cost 1 rep for the downvoter. The penalty of -2 for the question asker remains. (Downvotes on answers are not affected and so still cost -1 for the downvoter.) I think this change is not that important for tex.sx, but people might wonder what's happening. I hope the change won't have the effect of more downvotes on questions (although this is the intention for SO)!

The "flag weight" statistic has been dropped from user profiles. Instead it now displays "helpful flags" as an integer value (as opposed to the previous decimal value based on some functional form).

Changes include:

• Deputy badge requires 80 helpful flags (an increase from the former 40 minimum flawless helpful flag criterium); and
• Marshal badge requires 500 helpful flags (a reduction from the former 566 minimum flawless helpful flag criterium)

This brings the flagging badges in line with the editing badges (80 edits for Strunk & White and 500 edits for Copy Editor).

References:

• The requirements for the Deputy Badge seems to have gone up. I had some 600+ flag weight and now have only 53 helpful flags (difficult to get as a moderator ;-)), so I'm under the 80 for the Deputy Badge, but I got it months ago. – Martin Scharrer Jan 20 '12 at 10:29
• I don't understand why "Offensive" and "Spam" flags aren't counted as helpful. (I have 41 helpful flags + 1 spam and 1 offensive). – Alan Munn Jan 20 '12 at 16:12
• @AlanMunn I think they may have been actioned automatically as the posts in question got a lot of flags. My guess is that this does not count as 'moderator attention', unfortunately. – Joseph Wright Jan 20 '12 at 16:40
• @MartinScharrer: Note that about 600 flag weight is equivalent to only 68 flags. 80 flags ≙ 616,63259887. 500 flags ≙ 741,90790571. – doncherry Jan 20 '12 at 19:30
• Flag weights still exist, but they are not displayed. See the cryptic mention on meta.stackexchange.com/questions/59445/… – Charles Stewart Jan 31 '13 at 19:59

There is new "magic linking" markup to special pages in our Markdown-like syntax for comments. I think the most important are to link:

1. into the FAQ, using [FAQ], or to the specific sections, e.g., [FAQ#questions], [FAQ#dontask], [FAQ#close], etc.;
2. to the How To Ask page, using [ask], or the How To Answer page, using [answer];
3. to our main site using [tex.se] (feeble sigh) from other sites.

Note that this is for comments only, and the main Tex site and meta will each link to their FAQ, etc. There's more markup supported: see balpha's announcement for the details.

• Oh how I long for a [FAQ#MWE] – Seamus Aug 22 '11 at 17:18

There are further new badges in August - bronze, silver and gold:

28 users got it when it has been established.

No user got it yet.

No user got it yet. See also: Why is the Marshall badge awarded at a flag weight of 749 (and not at 750)

To date, 3 users have earned this coveted bronze badge.

The Powers That Be now incorporated TeX.sx as a migration path from StackOverflow:

Credits go to mmyers for announcing it in the chatroom. :)

• Huh? How come I never see this when I flag a question for migration? Do I have to enable it? – Peter Grill Sep 29 '12 at 1:00
• @PeterGrill: I suspect this migration path only appears in the main StackOverflow site. – Paulo Cereda Sep 29 '12 at 10:44
• I don't see it when I try to flag TeX related questions from Stack Overflow. – Peter Grill Sep 29 '12 at 17:41
• @PeterGrill: I have no idea then. – Paulo Cereda Sep 29 '12 at 18:45
• @PeterGrill: I found it! On StackOverflow, go to flag > it doesn't belong here, or it is a duplicate > off topic > belongs on tex.stackexchange.com. :) – Paulo Cereda Sep 29 '12 at 22:31
• Ok.... I guess I have not been flagging question correctly... Thanks, as this will save me some typing in the future. Perhaps that is why a question I had flagged last week for migration got closed, and then I think it eventually got deleted. – Peter Grill Sep 29 '12 at 22:46

Updated (and more subtle) notifications. Usually, @-style references shows up in your inbox with the following notification style:

However, notifications (like badges and migrations) were usually associated with a thick banner across the top of the page. Now they are more in line your inbox:

There is an official blog release on this Revamped notifications.

The flag weight history can now (since a few weeks) be seen by clicking on the flag weight display below the user icon on the user page. Flags older than the introduction of this feature are not displayed. If you want to find out if a flag was marked as correct or incorrect by a moderator than this is the place you can find it out.

There's a new badge in July:

for the first approved tag synonym.

• So you need to suggest a tag synonym and when it gets accepted you get the badge, right? – Martin Scharrer Jul 8 '11 at 13:07
• Apparently 12 of us already have! – Alan Munn Jul 8 '11 at 13:13
• @Martin: right! Btw. it works also on meta. – Stefan Kottwitz Jul 8 '11 at 14:43
• @Alan: Yes, new badges are applied in retrospect. – Martin Scharrer Jul 8 '11 at 14:49
• @Stefan: First I was not sure if you got one for suggesting or approving a tag synonym. The SX people could really rewrite all badge descriptions so that they are clear. The Meta.SX is full of questions about how specific badges are now given out. – Martin Scharrer Jul 8 '11 at 14:51

The mobile design has been launched this week - and this is the look for TeX.SX:

You can switch to mobile or full design by clicking a link at the bottom of a page, called mobile or full site.

Currently, only the retag and administrative powerhouse lockstep has this badge. Badge progress is displayed in right-hand column when viewing any tag info page:

For example, see the {tikz-pgf} tag info page. Scroll down; it's displayed on the right.

Two new badges are up for grabs: Caucus (bronze) and Constituent (silver)

Awarded to those who took part in a moderator election.

• Right now, those badges aren't exactly "up for grabs". ;-) – lockstep Jun 9 '12 at 11:32

Reviews have been updated again, to eliminate review abuse (a.k.a. "people clicking “Looks good” all the way through just so they can get a badge"):

1. Reviewers get test items, called review audits, both to provide a tutorial for new reviewers and catch lazy/cynical reviewers. These act like regular review items, except they give special feedback when the review vote is cast.
2. Reviewers who fail too many review audit items are suspended.

From the January 2013 Recent feature changes. This has gone live on SO, but I think it has not happened here yet.