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The new top bar was rolled out yesterday, and I noticed that the (very cool, very new) moderator inbox is only available on the relevant site(s) which us moderators mod.

I'm not sure about users who moderate more than one site (i.e. same inbox for all sites? one inbox per site?), but I think that it should be as global as everything else.

The moderator message inbox should appear next to the inbox and achievements, and be displayed on all sites, showing mod messages from all sites.

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    "I think that it should be as global as everything else" Why? The world isn't going to end if we miss a notification or two. – yannis Dec 5 '13 at 20:28
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    @Yannis: Why would the inboxes be global then? Why should the achievements? Why not make it site-specific (in fact, reputation changes were site specific). Since Stack Exchange decided that they wanted to make things more network-wide, I think it should be uniform across of levels of notifications. That's all. – Madara's Ghost Dec 5 '13 at 20:29
  • Hey, I never said I liked any of the other global notifications ;P – yannis Dec 5 '13 at 20:30
  • @Yannis: That's a different story. Perhaps you'd like to take that one to another meta post :P – Madara's Ghost Dec 5 '13 at 20:30
  • I'm working 14-16 hours per day these days, absolutely no time for meta posts. – yannis Dec 5 '13 at 20:31
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As I wrote in response to a related post:

Most moderators only moderate one or two sites. Any other site they participate on, they're a normal member of the site and should feel free to participate without distraction. We've never done cross-site flags for the express reason that doing so would interfere with the ability of our moderators to ever take a holiday: moderators should be moderating when they're active on their sites, not dragged away from doing something else.

I'm not dead-set against some sort of cross-site notification system if there's a good reason for it - but the previous behavior was entirely a side-effect of how it was implemented, and I see no reason to preserve that just for the heck of it.

Note that for moderators who are moderating multiple sites, it's extremely likely that messages from more active sites would completely overwhelm the slower ones... Where arguably mod-messages deserve a bit more oversight. We avoided this in the past by redirecting all mod-messages on smaller sites into the inbox, but this wasn't a great solution either.

If you can come up with a good reason to do this, post it up - otherwise, the "work-around" is to just visit the sites where you're a moderator regularly.

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  • Sure, the only "reason" I have is to keep things uniform. You guys seem to have some pretty solid arguments against, so I'll accept. – Madara's Ghost Dec 6 '13 at 18:03
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    Being a moderator on three sites, I need to check 10 notifications: inbox, mod box on site 1, mod box on site 2, mod box on site 3, flags on site 1, flags on meta site 1, flags on site 2, flags on meta site 2, flags on site 3, flags on meta site 3. This sucks. – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Mar 11 '14 at 21:10
  • Sounds like what you need is something that'll let you know if there are pending notifications on any of your sites, @Gilles. – Shog9 Mar 11 '14 at 22:02
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    @Shog9 Yes, that would be great. I might even code it up if there was a decent API, but web scraping with highly complex Javascript doesn't interest me. – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Mar 11 '14 at 22:05
  • I can give you a reason... in the App, you can't see them at all, so getting a notification in your inbox would actually be really, really helpful. If I know there's something that needs attention, I can open up the full version of the site in the browser app rather than the SE App. – Catija ModStaff Feb 24 '17 at 0:04
  • AFAIK, the mobile apps don't display inbox notifications about mod messages anyway, @Catija (that is to say, if you send a mod-message and someone replies, you won't see it until you visit the site). That's because mod messages aren't exposed via the API... So, this wouldn't help with that. – Shog9 Feb 24 '17 at 0:07
  • Maybe I'm misunderstanding the request... or want something slightly different. You can't access moderator stuff from the app but if the notifications went into your general inbox (say if they haven't been viewed in an hour) then they would show up in the app. It could even interact with the new "vacation" function and toggle to an off position when you're away. – Catija ModStaff Feb 24 '17 at 0:10
  • No, I mean the actual message itself isn't available via the API, @Catija. So notifications of them aren't displayed either. You can test this - send me a mod-message, and I'll respond. Lots of mod stuff would be nice to have in a mobile app, but that'd mean writing a whole new API for 'em - so no sense in trying to piggyback on existing features when it's gonna take a bunch of new work anyway. – Shog9 Feb 24 '17 at 0:14
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Since there are only a few of you guys, I'm happy to talk this through and go with whatever makes the most sense. The thinking here was that sometimes you just want to be users, so we figured we could assume that if you are browsing other sites you are probably taking a break from mod duties.

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    I would say, +1 for your positive approach (despite not being a mod myself). I just don't understand that while both the question and the answer are IMHO very good, the answer gains upvotes much quicker that the question... – yo' Dec 5 '13 at 20:27
  • I haven't thought of it that way. Even given that, I would still want some sort of indication that something happened. In the previous design it was via the inbox, if we moved it away, I still want some way of knowing it happened even if I'm not directly browsing the site. – Madara's Ghost Dec 5 '13 at 20:27
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    @tohecz: That's because more people agree with the answer than the question. And probably has nothing at all to do with the diamond next to Jeremy's name. – Madara's Ghost Dec 5 '13 at 20:28
  • @MadaraUchiha Well, or people just don't vote to questions even if they're good. I just hope I'm not the only one who voted more questions than answers. :) – yo' Dec 5 '13 at 20:38
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    This assumption is completely wrong for me. I mod two beta sites and participate on a bunch more. Mod activity is only a small part of my SE activity, but I'm happy to treat it as more urgent than answer writing (which is what I spend most of my SE time on). In particular, I'd really like to have flag notifications whenever I'm browsing SE, not just my particular SE. Obviously that's not desirable for, say, any SO mod. – Gilles 'SO- stop being evil' Dec 5 '13 at 21:26
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I'd like to know that something significant is happening on sites I moderate even if I'm currently happily surfing some other site as a "just plain user". We get some of this; replies to (my) mod messages to to my inbox in addition to the diamond menu.

Two things I don't want: pushy notifications for new meta posts (I'll see them within a few hours and that's good enough), and for everything to be jumbled up in one diamond inbox that all gets marked as read as soon as I touch it. (I moderate more than one site.)

I'd like the diamond menu on a site to act the same way that the "responses" and "reputation" tabs on my user profile act -- lit up until I dismiss, and viewing events in my inbox (or achievements, for the rep case) doesn't dismiss those alerts. This plus sending important mod events (CM contacts, mod messages, and replies to same) to the inbox would let moderators be quickly informed of big events without messing up our current on-site workflows.

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