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I just noticed Will's profile on Stack Overflow (and Wont's on MSO.)

I could have sworn Will used to have a Diamond. Now he does not.

I've searched Meta for an explanation. Nothing found.

What happened to everyone's favorite moderator?

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22  
Facebook.SO is no more, he lived through it...I guess that was a sign to him... –  Bart Jul 3 '13 at 17:36
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That, and the [books] tag is gone now. There's only so much one guy can accomplish. –  LittleBobbyTables Jul 3 '13 at 17:39
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@LBT True - It must be tiring to click all those shiny buttons all day. I wonder if we'll have another election? –  Undo Jul 3 '13 at 17:40
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@Undo - Probably not. The changes to the flagging system have significantly reduced the burden on SO moderators, and the newly elected moderators are quite active on the site. There should be an announcement forthcoming about this. –  Brad Larson Jul 3 '13 at 17:43
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@Manishearth We did just have Kev resign a few weeks ago. We brought up minitech, but would we really want to bring up the fifth place finisher? –  Undo Jul 3 '13 at 17:45
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I'm [on hold]... but I'm still oscillating. –  Won't Jul 3 '13 at 17:47
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I've reopened this so Will can respond when he has a chance to do so - the official response here would be from him. Please, though - save the floor for him and remember that some folks do have jobs :) –  Tim Post Jul 3 '13 at 17:57
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:( ------------- –  Pëkka Jul 3 '13 at 17:58
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Everyone's favorite? (;_;) –  Bill the Lizard Jul 3 '13 at 18:22
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@BilltheLizard It's true, nobody likes you most. Well, maybe that one guy...nope. Nobody –  Michael Mrozek Jul 3 '13 at 18:28
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@Won't - I'm going to miss your .... monologues/conversations with yourself in the chat rooms. They're plenty entertaining. :D –  jmort253 Jul 4 '13 at 1:29
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@Won't we Will always remember you! :) –  Shadow Wizard Jul 4 '13 at 23:01
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Related... wonder if we should create new goodbye-party tag? –  Shadow Wizard Jul 4 '13 at 23:02
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@TimPost Okay, carved out some time. Now I'm going to have to work late on a friday :/ –  Won't Jul 5 '13 at 17:32

1 Answer 1

up vote 94 down vote accepted

Sorry, with the holiday and other things, I'm a bit late in writing this. But, yes, it is true, I've submitted my resignation as moderator to the team. Of course, I'm still around and will continue to contribute and help-vampire on SO and other SE network sites.

There are a few reasons, good and bad, why I have resigned.

The good... I've been moved onto a project that's just starting and already has a deadline for September. It's a linchpin between a number of our other products, and our customer base has been yelling for it for quite some time. I'm already elbow deep in prototypes right now, and as I have the attention span of a SQUIRREL! I owe it to my work to knock down the number of distractions, this being the biggest. And, hopefully after things slow down with this project, I'll be able to dedicate some of my extra time towards personal projects which might actually bring in some cash rather than insults and accusations of fascistic tendencies. I've sunk all my free time I'd normally be using for this into moderation. Well, moderation and drinking, but a man has to know his priorities. I've got a few things buzzing around in my head I'd like to do. Kinda like this, but more useful.

The bad... the time I've been able to dedicate to moderating has been steadily declining over the past year. I've had to cut out Meta participation almost completely (something that's bad for a mod, imho), and have only been able to keep up my flag handling rates by relying on some task-streamlining userscripts. I've also been relying on the team more and more lately to handle more complex moderator tasks for me, such as sussing out socks or dealing with plagiarists. In other words, I've kept the easy part of the job and offloaded the hard parts. It's not exactly fair to my fellow mods, or to the team. I don't think they've really noticed yet, but I've noticed. If I can't give the job the attention it requires, then I shouldn't have it. Because, if you don't pay attention, you tend to screw things up.

Another issue was that I screwed things up. Specifically, I violated the moderator agreement. Not on purpose, but by a simple stupid accident. I'm glad to say that due to fixes that were immediately placed into production it will be impossible for any other mod to make the same mistake (as Tim has relayed to me), and that I didn't really screw things up that bad (which is always a possibility when you have access to sensitive information). Nonetheless, I'm depressed by this and by the trouble it has caused the StackExchange team. They take the agreement very seriously (as they should), and so I placed them in a bad position. This isn't the first time I've screwed up something like this as a mod. I've got quite a few nastygrams that Jeff sent me back in the day. I told him that if I ever became more of a liability than a benefit I'd be happy to resign; I know there are many other great, deserving users here that would love an opportunity to become a StackOverflow mod. I think that time is now.

I leave you all in very capable hands. To the team, particularly those who I have worked with closely, Shog9, Tim Post, Anna Lear, Grace Note (and Aarthi, if she reads this), my sincerest apologies and my greatest thanks. Your tireless work helps the moderator team here and at every other StackExchange site do their job to the best of their ability. I will definitely miss working with you, and wish you all the best in the future. I love you guys.

To my old comrades in flags, casperOne, Brad, George, Bill, NullUserException, Robert, BoltClock, Michael, ThiefMaster, jjnguy and ChrisF (yeah, you're new, but an old hand in the teacher's lounge), you guys are the best. People don't really know how much effort and dedication you put into your moderation, and how much you really do care about the community. Yeah, they know, but they don't know how much. It has been a pleasure serving with you for these years. Your help and comradeship has made a tough, thankless job more than worth it. To the noobs, Andrew, animuson, Flexo, Gordon, and minitech, I wish I had more time to serve with you guys. You all have shown up for your position with admirable enthusiasm and have shown yourselves worthy of your position. I'd leave you with words of wisdom, but you're all smarter than me, so let me just leave you my thanks.

To the moderator(s) who will replace me... You're in for a hell of a ride. Remember the community here is your best tool. Listen to them. When you can, defer to them. And above all protect them from the vampires, slackers, trolls and spammers. They won't realize how much you do to beat back the barbarian horde, but you'll know.

To the community at large and on StackOverflow... I'm now on your side. These nazi monkeys with guns in there hands need to understand that we LIKE asking for framework recommendations! We want to talk about whether our IDEs should have a white background or a black background! What programmer doesn't like that kind of chit chat? This overzealous closing bullshit... Oh, I'm sorry, this overzealous "On Holding" bullshit has got to stop. Its RUINING StackOverflow! I've been here since the beta, but these close nazis are driving me out of here. I mean, why would you want to close a question with 11 upvotes? Obviously people find it has worth, and like it! I'm going to ask for a so that any question with more than five upvotes cannot be closed by ANYBODY. Not even those scumbag moderators who I just recently complemented but who are all a bunch of assholes now. Here's what I think of you guys

MONKEYS WITH GUNS THERE HANDS YARGH

FIGHT THE POWER!

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We'd be more than happy to insult you every once in a while, while you focus on what is to come. No need to quit cold turkey. Thanks for all your effort and good luck. ;) –  Bart Jul 5 '13 at 17:44
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Downvote because insincerity. Jerk :( (nah I upvoted I'm happy to see you go) –  BoltClock's a Unicorn Jul 5 '13 at 17:45
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Glad to hear the reasons why you're retiring as a moderator are, well, at least nothing heartbreakingly bad! Thanks for years of tireless service, and for being... well, Will ♦. What more can I say really that isn't already implied by that? Our special coolest mod. Fixture at this place. Fellow connoisseur of the occasional cussword. See you on Meta when we start that feature request! –  Pëkka Jul 5 '13 at 17:49
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@Pekka: I ain't gone, I just can't internet stalk you all anymore :( –  Won't Jul 5 '13 at 17:50
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@Won't is there a new privacy scandal looming? "What Stack Overflow moderators know about your surfing habits." –  Pëkka Jul 5 '13 at 17:51
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I'm sorry to see you go you no-good dried-up overzealous deletionist nazi monster. If your new project involves unilaterally nuking entire comment threads from orbit then I'm sure you'll do great work. Congrats and good luck! :) –  Bill the Lizard Jul 5 '13 at 17:59
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@Pekka웃 We know what you posted last summer. –  Anna Lear Jul 5 '13 at 18:00
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@BoltClock'saUnicorn: UNICORNS DON'T CRY! Hey, I remember what it was like to be young. Glad what I said helped. You're a great mod, and person. Always remember that. –  Won't Jul 5 '13 at 18:35
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Gonna miss seeing you in the blue room, Will. Wrote a shitty script to change the buttons to "decline" and "delete" in the flag queue as a tribute. –  Shog9 Jul 5 '13 at 18:49
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Bro, you skip out on NYC again, I'll have your head. That said, you wouldn't have had a chance to skip out on NYC if we weren't mods. Thanks for all of your tireless efforts, and best of luck in all of your future endeavours. SQUIRREL!!! –  casperOne Jul 5 '13 at 19:13
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Shine on, you crazy diamond. –  Brad Larson Jul 5 '13 at 23:59
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@ChrisF Thanks. Coming from the most prolific mod evar, that warms my small single valved crustaceans in my heart. Cheers. –  Won't Jul 6 '13 at 1:16
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@Won't: Well, that sloth means sloth to me. –  BoltClock's a Unicorn Jul 6 '13 at 4:09
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That's it, I'm never taking a holiday again if this is what happens. When the orphans ask why I'm working on Christmas, I'll stare wistfully into the distance as a single tear glistens in my eye. And I'll think of... what's his name, that guy that used to be a mod. –  mmyers Jul 6 '13 at 5:45
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"above all protect them from the vampires, slackers, trolls and spammers" well, except for the community members who have a soft spot for said vampires, slackers, trolls, and spammers, of course. They want the truth? They can't handle the truth! –  Jeff Atwood Jul 6 '13 at 6:11

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