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

TeX - LaTeX Stack Exchange is scheduled for an election next week, 2021-10-18. 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 2021-10-18 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.

6 Answers 6


How will you handle a disagreement with another moderator over an action one of you has taken (or will be taking) on a post that requires moderator attention?


How would you handle a situation where

  • An earlier question is a duplicate or near-duplicate of a new one
  • The top answer to the older question appears out of date
  • A new answer to the old question would be buried at the bottom and would never realistically be seen by people who would benefit from it
  • Do moderators (as opposed to the general community members) singlehandedly take care of duplicate closures so often that this question needs to go into the moderator questionnaire? Commented Oct 12, 2021 at 7:14
  • @TheAmplitwist tex.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/8733/… provides some useful insights
    – Joseph Wright Mod
    Commented Oct 12, 2021 at 13:41
  • @JosephWright Thank you, those are some interesting stats! Taking a look, it seems that moderators rarely need to step in to close/reopen questions. Commented Oct 12, 2021 at 15:02
  • @TheAmplitwist That is probably a separate meta-question, but it feels fair, yes.
    – Joseph Wright Mod
    Commented Oct 12, 2021 at 15:41
  • @TheAmplitwist Mods have ways of dealing with out-of-date canonical answers that other users don’t. Right now, they typically don’t use them, which I’m not sure is the best approach. “I don’t see any need to step in; the community can handle it,” is a valid and informative answer.
    – Davislor
    Commented Oct 12, 2021 at 17:32
  • @Davislor I think I understand better now, thank you :) Commented Oct 12, 2021 at 19:07

How would you handle this situation:

  • A newbie has posted an answer that should more properly have been a comment, but the newbie doesn't have enough rep.

  • Enough votes have been posted to delete it.

  • A flag has been posted requesting conversion to a comment.

Would you leave the deletion and ignore the flag, or convert the "answer" to a comment as requested by the flagger? Or would this depend on the content of the answer?


In which time zone do you live?

  • Ideally if there are n moderators then their time zones should form an arithmetic sequence with a difference of 24/n hours. Commented Nov 4, 2021 at 7:36
  • 1
    @IEatPorkEverySingleDay Yes, since the site is worldwide, one of the mods should be (almost) always available.
    – CarLaTeX
    Commented Nov 4, 2021 at 7:43

How much time do you spend on TeX.SE a day?

  • 1
    Maybe "a week"? cause "a day" would be too strict. Commented Oct 13, 2021 at 15:56
  • 5
    @muzimuzhiZ I think a mod should visit the site every day...
    – CarLaTeX
    Commented Oct 13, 2021 at 18:33

What would you like to change of the current style of moderation? (If you would like to change anything.)

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