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

Data Science Stack Exchange is scheduled for an election next week, 2022-06-13. 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 2022-06-13 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.

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Apologies for the delay in getting this question collection post out - if you would like a few extra days during nominations to propose questions, please let me know. $\endgroup$
    – Catija
    Commented Jun 10, 2022 at 14:14
  • $\begingroup$ The last question on the questionnaire references 10k and 20k thresholds, but here we have custom lower rep boundaries for privileges. $\endgroup$
    – Ben Reiniger Mod
    Commented Jun 13, 2022 at 20:49
  • $\begingroup$ Did my question go unselected due to editorial control (can I know why it was found tangential/irrelevant?), or just because nobody but me voted for any of the questions (and I can't vote for my own)? $\endgroup$
    – Ben Reiniger Mod
    Commented Jun 13, 2022 at 20:56
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @BenReiniger The system automatically only selects the answers with a score of at least 1 but I don't see any particular harm in your question, so I can add it. :) $\endgroup$
    – Catija
    Commented Jun 13, 2022 at 20:57

4 Answers 4


For a small site like ours, often it is difficult for 5 members to visit the close vote review queues in a reasonable period of time. As a moderator your close vote is binding. So, voting to close will close the question regardless of how the community at large has received the question.

Many people think that closing questions is harsh and should only be used in the most extreme cases. Others think that closing questions that meet the closing guidelines is one of the main methods to keep question quality high.

So this question centers on discussing how you will use your moderator close vote powers and how you have recently used the powers you currently have. Please discuss your views on this. Points that should be addressed include:

  1. How do you expect you will use the moderator close vote power?
  2. Will you visit the close vote queue regularly and vote to close those questions that need closing?
  3. How many close votes have you done in the last year?
  4. How many close vote reviews have you done in the last year?
  5. Do you consider closing a question unwelcoming?

There are many moderating activities that the someone who is not a Diamond Moderator can do. Among others these include:

  • Voting on posts
  • Editing posts
  • Flagging posts
  • Visiting the reviews queues

Visiting the reviews queues is the activity farthest removing from visiting the site simply to ask or answer questions. In the last year or two, how active have you been in the review queues?


One of the most important responsibilities of a moderator is being on the site regularly. Moderators are expected to visit the site regularly and go to the moderator queues and then maybe also the review queues. How often do you visit DataScience or other StackExchange sites during a day or week?

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ I feel like this should be a question for current moderators... how much do you have to be on the site ? how much time does it take a day on average ? $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 18, 2022 at 17:23

What is your view on the overlap of this site with others in the stackexchange network? How do/will you determine whether a question in an overlapping area should be retained, migrated, or closed?

  • $\begingroup$ Best to motivate this by giving specific examples. Are we talking about a) non-programming homework questions from Coursera's DL course? (which already has forums for homework, anyway) b) algorithmic questions from CrossValidated? c) Questions seeking recommendations of algorithm, package etc? d) other stuff? Which broad categories of questions belong(/don't belong) where? $\endgroup$
    – smci
    Commented Jul 3, 2022 at 1:34

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