Is it possible that, when you flag a moderator's actions, they can action the flag themselves? Or does it get escalated even higher to staff? I suppose the question then is, who would deal with the staff's flags?

  • 2
    How do you flag a moderator's actions in the first place?
    – Pekka
    May 1, 2013 at 8:47
  • @Buscar Would love to hear the answers, "nobody is perfect"
    – Ruskes
    May 1, 2013 at 8:48
  • @Pekka웃 Hit the flag button either next to the comment or the answer :) May 1, 2013 at 8:48
  • I have flagged once and old answer, and the same person deleted his own link only answer. May 1, 2013 at 8:50
  • 7
    @AnoopVaidya ...and then went on to complain about unfair deletion and moderator abuse on Meta?
    – Bart
    May 1, 2013 at 8:51
  • 1
    If you're flagging diamonded staff, expect them to clog your kitchen garbage disposal. May 1, 2013 at 8:54
  • 3
    It will escalate to "even higher to staff" until you reach The Dude
    – Andomar
    May 1, 2013 at 8:54
  • @Bart: No Never. I never abused moderator and deletion for answer/questions. May 1, 2013 at 8:58
  • 4
    @AnoopVaidya I meant the moderator deleting his own answer and then continuing to complain about the deletion on Meta. Bad joke. That's all.
    – Bart
    May 1, 2013 at 8:59
  • 4
    First flag I ever handled was on one of my questions. Nuked that not constructive piece of crap without thinking about it twice.
    – yannis
    May 1, 2013 at 10:21

4 Answers 4


As BoltClock says in his answer, any moderator can handle any flag.

Obviously the classy thing for a mod to do is not handle any flags that concern their own actions.

If you really have reason to suspect that a moderator is abusing their position, you should contact [email protected] for SO, or [email protected] for the rest of the sites.

If you really have reason to suspect that staff are systematically treating you unfairly (which seems very very unlikely), I guess you could try to contact one of the bosses directly, say Joel on Twitter. But if it comes to that, make super sure your viewpoint in the matter doesn't contradict that of everyone else with a bit of common sense.

  • And of course SO/SE takes moderator abuse pretty seriously, going even so far as to outline the process to remove a moderator, should it ever go that far.
    – Bart
    May 1, 2013 at 8:58
  • 17
    What if Joel... oh forget it. May 1, 2013 at 9:00
  • 4
    @BoltClock'saUnicorn everyone knows it's Taco that's really in charge
    – AakashM
    May 1, 2013 at 10:22

If you mean flagging a moderator's post, any moderator including the one whose post you flagged will be able to see and handle the flag. There is little difference, if any at all, between an employee and a community moderator when it comes to flag visibility and handling.

It's the responsibility of the moderator in question to avoid handling the flag themself, of course, but there are no technical rules preventing them from doing so. (I wouldn't want to be prevented from editing or deleting my own answer just because it was flagged.)

  • I have flagged a post that a moderator deleted once and that I disagreed with the deletion.. two flags on that question. One flag resulted in another moderator overturning the other moderator and my other flag was declined. So I would say the system works. May 2, 2013 at 14:57

If you want to complain about a moderator, sending a mail to [email protected] is the best way to do that. Those mails will be handled by the community team, their job is to moderate the moderators.

While a moderator will usually avoid handling a flag about themselves, the other moderators on the site are also not the right people to handle problematic moderator behaviour, so mailing SE is still the best way.


Stack Overflow works with community moderators who are elected every year. You can see them on this page: https://stackoverflow.com/users?tab=moderators

However, SO also has privileges. As soon as someone has at least 10000 reputation, he can also handle some of the flags.

That said, this goes for every flag. There is no difference between flagging something from a mod and flagging something from a normal user. Of course, the chance that you'll ever have to flag a mod is extremely low, since they can only get to those positions by behaving very well.

Eventually there is no technical impairment for a mod to handle his own flag, they're just trusted not to go that far.

  • 3
    A 10k can see only some flags. They also don't have access to the tool required for handling many types of flags, such as turning answers into comments or migrating posts. May 1, 2013 at 9:12
  • @CodesInChaos I did not know that, I don't have 10k rep.
    – MarioDS
    May 1, 2013 at 9:35
  • @CodesInChaos: Well, you really don't see the flags per se, just an action needed on a particular question or answer. You can't see who flagged it and you are right, the privileges are limited. May 2, 2013 at 15:28

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