The diamond in the name of the Community ♦ user is confusing new (and some not-so-new) users, making them think that it's a real ♦ mod or some kind of shared mod account:

"thanks, I have been starting to think that whoever drives Community diamond is nuts. Thinking back, it has always been preceded by an edit by someone. Makes sense now."

The suggestion, though seemingly made in jest, to strip the Community user of its diamond has received 17 upvotes as of this writing:

"I say SNATCH away the Diamond symbol from this Community bot. It is spoiling the name of our dear (Diamond) moderators :P"

I think it's time to do this. Let's strip Community ♦ of its diamond!

OK, so how should we designate the special status of the Community user instead? My preferred suggestion would be to color the Community username gray (and maybe italicize it) whenever it appears in the interface, to make it clear that it's not a real user. This could be done as easily as by adding a single CSS rule:

a[href="/users/-1/community"] { color: gray; font-style: italic; }

which would make it look something like this:

UI mockup of Community user name in gray and italics

(It might be a good idea to keep this from applying to links inside post or comment content, which could be done with a couple more rules.)

That said, just as a fallback in case the CSS fails to work in some cases (or just because Unicode symbols are fun!), another non-mutually-exclusive option would be to replace Community's diamond with some other symbol more indicative of its non-human nature. Some possible choices might include:

  • U+2699: ⚙ — the gear symbolizes Community's robot nature (note: Unicode 4.1 character, browser/font support unfortunately limited)
  • U+2662: ♢ — like the mod diamond, but obviously different
  • U+2665: ♥ — another riff on the mod diamond, with 100% more love and kindness :)
  • U+2205: ∅ — because Community is not really a user, the mathematical symbol for "nothing" would seem fitting
  • U+262D: ☭ — because "community" and "communism" are pretty close, don't you think? :P

Feel free to suggest more possibilities. :)

See also:

  • 12
    It's pretty easy for anyone to figure out who the Community user is just by visiting its profile and reading the bio... Oh wait... No one ever reads... – animuson Dec 30 '13 at 19:09
  • 1
    @animuson: And how often do you click on random users' profile links to see if they're actually real people or not? – Ilmari Karonen Dec 30 '13 at 19:23
  • 4
    Well, I'm a moderator, so I look at user profiles a lot... – animuson Dec 30 '13 at 19:24
  • 5
    I'm not a mod and I look at user profiles all the time. – ɥʇǝS Dec 30 '13 at 19:24
  • 3
    Me too. I find it natural to ask "who is this?" when someone does something odd or unexpected. Isn't it logical to look at the profile by clacking the name? – JMCF125 Dec 30 '13 at 19:58
  • 1
    Would it be.inappropriate to try to mark this as a duplicate of a question asking about removing a moderator from their position? ;) – Andrew Barber Dec 31 '13 at 5:52
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    I like this proposal. Maybe also drop the reputation listing from Community's user card, since it doesn't gain reputation. – Jeremy Jan 8 '14 at 2:24
  • The suggestion about communism is funny, but I wouldn't go for it seriously. I think that the white diamond would be very good though - it shows that Community does some things that moderators do, but isn't actually a real moderator. – Donald Duck Mar 14 '17 at 12:15

If the diamond was taken away, then people could impersonate it to a degree. Of course, if it's replaced by something else it isn't a problem.

The user needs a diamond because it does carry out diamond actions.

It's already clear that the user is a bot from the profile. Most of the confused MSO questions are about why the bot behaves as it does, with no confusion between it being a bot or a user.

It seems fine the way it is, to me.

  • 1
    The gray text would also be as hard to impersonate as the diamond (in fact, probably harder). And many of the comments to those questions do evidence confusion; note that e.g. this question did not include "bot" in its title before it was edited after comments. Also, we're only seeing the tip of the iceberg; most users who mistake Community for a mod aren't going to post to meta about it. – Ilmari Karonen Dec 30 '13 at 19:15
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    @IlmariKaronen In most situations I don't see considerable harm in someone thinking that "Community" is a person though. – Servy Dec 30 '13 at 19:17
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    @Servy: The potential harm is in the fact that, rightly or not, people interpret the diamond as a badge of authority, and may feel reluctant to e.g. revert actions made "Community ♦". To quote one example: "Yoiks. And I've not been going back and editing the posts thinking they must be sacrosanct because Community diamond OK'd them. This should change, surely.." – Ilmari Karonen Dec 30 '13 at 19:21
  • @IlmariKaronen I don't see that as a common viewpoint. Also, having people not realize that community is a mod is likely to result in more confusion elsewhere. – Servy Dec 30 '13 at 19:23
  • @Servy: An alternative symbol (or the gray-out I suggested) would make it pretty clear that it's not a normal user, either. – Ilmari Karonen Dec 30 '13 at 19:24
  • 2
    @IlmariKaronen I disagree. That's a pretty subtle distinction that can easily be overlooked, especially for someone with unusual monitor settings, poorer eyesight, colorblindness, etc. – Servy Dec 30 '13 at 19:26
  • @Servy: I added a UI mockup with the username grayed out and italicized to the question above. Do you really think it would be "easily overlooked"? – Ilmari Karonen Dec 30 '13 at 19:42
  • @IlmariKaronen yes, I most certainly do. – Servy Dec 30 '13 at 19:44
  • 1
    "The user needs a diamond because it does carry out diamond actions." Perfectly, exactly correct. – Andrew Barber Dec 30 '13 at 20:56
  • I vote for transparent diamond ♢U+2662 for Community bot so that it's different from real person mods. – iBug says Reinstate Monica Jun 5 '17 at 5:45

As animuson said, those who are confused can simply click on the Community user's profile link, and they'll see the helpful description:

enter image description here

And Community does moderator-y things, so I don't see why the diamond should be taken away.

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