February 2013 Newsletter

2013-03-11 by . 0 comments

Always Leave a Paper Trail

It is sometimes necessary for a moderator to take unilateral action without community process or review. Whenever possible, it is extremely helpful to leave artifacts about what happened. Comments can be left, even on deleted posts, to be a public-facing notice of the action. Flags can be used when deleting troublesome comments to separate from simple cleanup. A strange run-in with a user or concerns about a user’s recent activity, can be annotated on their profiles.

These artifacts will help your fellow moderators, the Community Team, or even regular users of the site to understand why actions were taken. It can help not only for their own information seeking benefit, but also as an easy way for yourself to remember why you may have taken an action.

User Merge Clarifications and Process

In last month’s issue, we announced a major policy change regarding how user merges are handled – namely that they are to be sent to the Community Team. The removal of moderator access to the tool has been completed.

To speed up the process, moderators may use the same form that a user uses in order to submit a merge request on their behalf. It remains a part of our quick help center available at the bottom of every page.

    From any page footer → ‘contact us’ » ‘Merge user profiles’

In order to prevent confusion, please enter your own email address and not the email address of the user that requires merging when submitting the form.

Audits in Review Tasks

Audits have been inserted into the review tasks as a means for catching users who try to skim past the review tasks unscrupulously. At the moment, this is only enabled for Stack Overflow, Super User, Server Fault, and Programmers. On those sites you may observe progress on how users are faring on the audits in your mod tools as follows:

    From the page top ‘mod’ link → ‘links’ » ‘Review Audits’

    Follow updates on the development on Meta Stack Exchange → review-audits tag

We’re constantly working out the kinks as new reports come in about the process. As we smooth things out, this will eventually be able to be deployed across more sites in the network.

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