The current reputation requirement for editing posts or approving suggested edits are

  • 500 reputation during private beta
  • 1000 reputation during public beta

Those are very steep hurdles during the very early stages of beta for a new site. On the new Biology site we had something like 2-3 users being able to approve edits for a day, but now that it went into public beta there is not a single user left that can edit or approve edits. Now we're entirely dependent on the SE community team to approve all edits.

I don't think this is a good solution, the community team has a lot of reponsibilities, I just don't think we should shovel all those edits onto them. They certainly know the SE system inside-out, but they usually have no specific domain knowledge, which makes it hard to judge the validity of the more subtle aspects of editing a post.

The goal should be to always have a certain number of users able to edit and approve edits. Those users should be active on the site (measured by reputation), and lacking any other useful metrics, activity on other SE sites should also count in their favor. Ideally, you'd like an expert in the field that is familiar with the SE system to approve the edits on a brand new site.

What I propose is to lower the reputation requirements for editing as long as not enough users have achieved the reputation necessary to edit during that particular stage of the beta. It might make sense to take the activities of the user on other SE sites into account, a user familiar with other SE sites is more likely to have experience with approving edits.

The goal should be to have new SE sites pretty much self-sufficient with regards to editing posts during the early beta period.

  • I concur! There are other apparent anomalies too. On Christianity.SE I can vote to close (500) but can't edit to improve a question (1000). May 1, 2012 at 19:14
  • This is still a problem. Law.SE just went public beta and only one user has enough rep to review edits!
    – feetwet
    Jun 10, 2015 at 1:02

2 Answers 2


Perhaps specifically for editing, which requires less domain knowledge than say determining whether something is a duplicate or not, we could qualify using shadow-rep - some fraction of our [total, highest, average] rep on [all other, our top ten, our top] sister site. I have over 10k on programmers, on meta and on SO. I can probably approve edits correctly on any site at all, as long as it is in English. I can certainly correctly decide whether to approve/reject or skip a proposed edit.

I'll propose that any user with over 100 earned on the beta site and over 10k on any other site have full editing and edit-approving privileges, as well as flagging, but no extra vote-to-close privileges.

Disclaimer: on sci fi, essentially all my rep has come from edits. Implementing this would have slowed my gain of rep on that site. So this proposal would have hurt me, and could possibly hurt other new users of your beta site.

  • 3
    An alternative that might work better (if the engine supports it) and get people in the habit of behaving as a community: the threshold you propose gets you edit approvals, but your own edits still have to be approved by someone else (so they're suggested edits). Approving edits becomes a shared activity, and oh by the way you'd still get the editing rep for the approved ones. Jan 28, 2013 at 17:45

I also agree. In the chemistry site our top user has a rep of 425. This means no one is able to edit posts or approved post edits.

Maybe this could be handled by using the top x%.

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