The last time we lifted the level cap was in 2015. In 2014, we added a unilateral close-as-duplicate power for gold tag badge holders, but no new reputation level. So we've been thinking about giving users more reasons to keep playing. (I've answered this question with some circumstantial evidence that people do begin losing enthusiasm after they hit 10k.)

Please answer with a description of the privilege you think would be worthy of 30k and include your arguments after a horizontal line (\n---\n). These should be on-site unlockables and not physical items. Proposals don't necessarily have to give users extra powers on the site, but they should feel significant to those who have achieved this impressive level of reputation.

I left an answer to be an example. I've had a significant head start over most everyone else thinking about this feature, so please don't worry that your idea is underbaked. That said, the most useful answers will include justifications more than "wouldn't it be cool if . . ."

Finally, let me be the first to point out how odd it is that I am proposing a new extrinsic motivation. It turns out that one of the great pleasures of this job is that I can do a small part in helping many other people enjoy writing great posts. I believe that a well-considered additional privilege level will benefit many users across the network. This is doubly true if that privilege empowers more people to solve problems and fix annoyances they come across.

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    None. 30k users are no better at moderating than 20k users. In fact I've seen way to many who don't even know the basics of SE principals. New moderator privileges should be rewarded based on moderation experience rather than reputation as reputation does not correlate much with ability to moderate, especially at higher rep levels. – bjb568 Apr 3 '15 at 18:23
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    I agree with @bjb568 - look at flag history above 20k. If a user has thousands of accepted flags and less than 1% denied, then they are a candidate for significantly expanded moderation powers. Reputation is only good for telling us the user has contrbuted good content to the community - it isn't as helpful past a certain point at telling us whether that user should be given more access to sensitive moderation duties. It's clear, though, that more moderation must be performed by the community. – Adam Davis Apr 3 '15 at 18:39
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    @bjb568: As I mention in the question, these need not be extra powers as long as they feel significant. Some of the more interesting ideas last time around are purely informational or cosmetic. Please feel free to suggest less disruptive suggestions than my comment moderation answer. – Jon Ericson Apr 3 '15 at 18:47
  • 1
    @AdamDavis: I didn't even check for dupes. Sorry about that. We started talking about this internally last month and it slowly dawned on me that we aren't in the best position to come up with good ideas. I should have known that the idea to ask on meta wasn't even original. – Jon Ericson Apr 3 '15 at 19:03
  • 1
    @JonEricson No need to apologize! It's old and at the time there was no need for it. – Adam Davis Apr 3 '15 at 19:07
  • 2
    When will the decision be finalized? And, when will we get to see the feature? – user178465 Apr 5 '15 at 8:43
  • Custom question filters based on all sorts of things. – user147520 Apr 5 '15 at 20:45
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    @Jon While this got many answers, I think if you want more this better become featured, this way it will also attract users from different sites around the network. (not just MSE dwellers :-)) – Shadow the Welcoming Wizard Apr 6 '15 at 7:57
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    A year later: anything happening with these ideas? – Josh Caswell Mar 30 '16 at 22:49
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    @JoshCaswell: Not at the moment. :-( Unfortunately, Documentation and a few other features have soaked up a lot of developer time since the fall. Even shortly after posted this, I switched to asking about lightweight features. I'm looking forward to the summer when some of the projects will be getting wrapped up. – Jon Ericson Mar 30 '16 at 23:13
  • 1
    So... Now that documentation's dead, can we get a status update on that thingi, please? – David Arenburg Sep 14 '17 at 13:52
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    @DavidArenburg: I'm going to be bringing this up internally, but it might be a while before we can update the status. It's not on the roadmap yet. – Jon Ericson Sep 14 '17 at 15:29

43 Answers 43

Your own personal blog attached to your profile

  • Write articles on topics that interest you
  • Others can discuss your articles in attached chatrooms, over which you retain full ownership + the ability to promote insightful chat messages to a featured position below your articles.
  • The nature of the content is up to the author, but must still abide by the usual content policies (on topic, no rudeness, no plagiarism).
  • Readers can vote on articles (up/down) and highly-voted articles will be featured on a separate section of the site.
  • High-tech XML-based "feed" allows folks with special software to "follow" individual users' posts and pretend it's 1999 all over again.

Everyone's kinda fixated on moderation privileges here. That's understandable, but... I'm not sure it really makes a lot of sense: community-moderation works by distributing the load of moderation across a sizeable population, and 30K is a pretty high bar - even on Stack Overflow, there just aren't a lot of them to carry any significant weight.

But at 30K, there's a pretty good chance you can write. I mean, that's usually how you get 30K. So, why not offer folks who've gotten that far another outlet for their talents?

  • 13
    Of course, this would be a wonderful link in with Careers. – user213963 Apr 4 '15 at 3:36
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    Part of me is kinda afraid people will use this for all kinds of soapboxing, especially if blog content does not have to be tied to site content (and even then, I can see cases where this could go horribly wrong, even with the assumption that users with 30k should be "above" such things.) – Ash Apr 4 '15 at 3:48
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    Thanks for diverting focus away from moderation privileges - you're highly on point there - but I don't think I can get behind the blog idea as a 30K privilege. If nothing else, it's gonna be a heck of a time investment to build something like that and do it right. Now, that isn't a reason not to do it, but assuming we do build that, 30K then seems like a really steep requirement for entry. – Adam Lear Apr 4 '15 at 3:59
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    What a fantastic idea for the site.. but not for 30k users. I think that would be a real shame not allowing such a thing for the many great users who are not even close to that rep. You'd also possibly entice spammy SEO nutters doing all kinds to get to 30k to spam their sites, so would need to be only to users with really good activity. e.g. X% good to bad review ratio, good up to down vote ratio on their answers/questions, etc. – James Apr 4 '15 at 10:17
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    That'd be easier to sell if "moar wordpress" wasn't part of the deal, @Christian. Regardless, that's a separate discussion. – Shog9 Apr 4 '15 at 15:45
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    If we built this and folks actually used it and it wasn't a complete trainwreck, I'd tend to agree @Anna... But, it's always possible to lower the rep level for a privilege, and we've had good success with this in the past. 30K is a pretty high bar for something that more than anything else just needs a lot of warm bodies, but it's pretty low for "can write, has stuff to write about". – Shog9 Apr 4 '15 at 17:26
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    @Shog9 Granted, but if the end game is "try to get this right and then lower the access barrier", then what you're really suggesting is a limited roll-out pilot-type feature rather than a privilege. Precedent or no, we'd be right back where we are now, looking for a replacement for a 30k-level privilege and making folks feel like something that's theirs is being taken away otherwise. – Adam Lear Apr 5 '15 at 2:57
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    When you say the "usual content policies", does that include the CC-by-SA license? Posts on the Q&A site that can be edited by anybody feel different to me than blog posts, and I wonder if a different flavor of CC, one that takes a firmer hand with derivative works, would be more appealing to prospective bloggers. – Monica Cellio Apr 5 '15 at 4:02
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    I think CC-BY-SA strikes a good balance, @Monica. Note that it doesn't necessarily imply in-place editing, but allows the author to retain ownership while giving others some confidence that they can reference, reuse and extend useful posts without the fear of having the rug pulled out from under them. – Shog9 Apr 5 '15 at 4:51
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    I was playing with the thought of starting something blog-like on stuff that was too opinion-based or otherwise unsuitable for SE anyway, so I like this idea. However: How will this feature be adapted to public betas? If the reputation threshold is also 30 k, it will be quite difficult to reach. If the threshold is different and lower (say, 10 k), this may have disallow people continuing their blog, if a site graduates. – Wrzlprmft Apr 5 '15 at 10:15
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    I'm almost at 30k on two different sites… and I've participated in a few blogoverflow blogs. I'm not sure this would be any more successful than blogoverflow; why wouldn't I just link to my own blog (if I had one) in my profile? – derobert Apr 9 '15 at 21:21
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    @Shog9 Are you SURE you want this feature implemented? I now have 10k on a beta (which, according to most of the other answers here, would correspond to 30k on a graduated site). You can imagine what my SE blog would be like, right? You'd probably get a mention, you know. – Rand al'Thor Apr 10 '15 at 20:44
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    Already popping popcorn, @rand – Shog9 Apr 11 '15 at 2:51
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    As a 30K+ user who doesn't blog - this is probably a feature I'd use, it doesn't sound like a lot of work - great idea. – Benjamin Gruenbaum Jun 17 '15 at 16:20
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    +1, I'd sooo love a StackOverflow blogging platform!! – Konamiman Sep 30 '15 at 7:09
up vote 93 down vote
+100

Please consider this an example proposal. There are a lot of potential pitfalls with comment moderation, so I don't want people to get too excited about this particular idea. It occurs to me that since we really want to hear your ideas, seeding the question was a mistake.

Comment moderation

At 30k on graduated sites (and 10k on beta sites) grant users the following powers:

  1. Access to the comment flag queue
  2. Delete comments
  3. Purge comments (i.e., one click to remove all comments on a post)
  4. Move comments to chat
  5. Access to deleted comments on the post page via a menu option
  6. Undelete comments
  7. Access to comment edit history
  8. Edit comments
  9. Convert to comment

I'm suggesting these privileges because comments are one of the few things that elected and appointed diamond moderators can do something about that the rest of the community cannot. Other than flagging, there's no way for regular users to fix problems with the comments on a post. Having a powerful privilege to aspire to provides a better incentive than providing somewhat less-powerful privileges. Anecdotally, people most look forward to the 10k privileges which introduces the final piece of community moderation: post deletion.

I estimated enthusiasm following a privilege level by doing a longitudinal study of median time-to-next-action. Looking at the 868 Stack Overflow users with more than 20k whose accounts were created after 2010-10-05 (the date privilege notifications were first issued), we can see how quickly they posted and edited after gaining each new privilege:

rep_level level                        median_next_post median_next_edit
--------- ---------------------------- ---------------- ---------------- 
    5     participate in meta          13 hours         70 hours
   10     remove new user restrictions 11               63
   15     vote up                       8               53
   20     talk in chat                  8               48
   50     comment everywhere            6               33
   75     set bounties                  6               26
  100     edit community wiki           5               25
  125     vote down                     5               23
  250     view close votes              4               19
  500     access review queues*         2                3
 1000     established user              3               13
 1500     create tags                   5               13
 2000     edit questions and answers    4                8
 2500     create tag synonyms           3                8
 3000     cast close and reopen votes   4                6
 5000     approve tag wiki edits        4                6
10000     access to moderator tools     6                5
15000     protect questions             9               12
20000     trusted user                 10               15

* The access to First Post and Late Answer review queues is an outlier because it was introduced around August, 2013. It’s a good guess that most of these users got notified of their new privilege when they had far more than 500 reputation.

These are exceptional users, so they participate (as a group) far more than others. If we look at users with more than 5 reputation, the median first post after getting participate on meta is 215 hours. Compared to their later behavior, trusted users start slow. Notice that they also slow down again after hitting 10k or so. Critically, the slow down after 10k also occurs for 30k users (N=429), so it’s not just an artifact of the cutoff.

There’s circumstantial evidence that increasing the top privilege level increased participation at higher levels. More to the point, the relatively underpowered 15k and 20k levels appear to be less effective at motivating users than 10k powers. So introducing something really helpful, such as comment moderation, seems in order.


However, I think comment moderation is mostly a waste of time. I'd much rather let the system handle comments. Unfortunately, there are already so many comments that should have been edits (or even answers) instead that we can't blindly hide/delete old comments. Creating this privilege will mean committing to manual comment moderation for the foreseeable future. Comment moderation is tedious and unrewarding so I'd rather have our top users do something more productive with their time.

Therefore, while this is my best idea for a new privilege level, I'd really rather find something else. Please consider answering with your own idea and/or upvoting better answers.

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    I like the idea of adding comment moderation but some of the items listed, I'd be worried about including: access to deleted comments, undeleting comments, editing comments. I'd think that we'd want these privileges restricted to a small # of users and on SO 30k user base is pretty large. Would users have access to all comments in the flag queue? There are things that moderators need to be aware of and if we no longer see these flags, then we lose the ability to step in. There might be repeated not-constructive/rude comments that needs messaging - that'd be lost if handled elsewhere. – Taryn Apr 3 '15 at 18:06
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    If editing comments past 5 min is allowed, it definitely should be disabled on metas. And even so, there are enough bitter 30K users around willing to use this feature to make others look stupid. I imagine these new powers being used for harm more often than for good. – user259867 Apr 3 '15 at 18:28
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    @JonEricson Creating even a comment flag queue would be a step in the right direction IMO. It's really easy to throw too chatty flags at a flag queue for users to review - we get tons of those and they are a waste of time for moderators, even obsolete comment flags. But I'd hesitate to send in rude/offensive or not-constructive flags. – Taryn Apr 3 '15 at 18:37
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    @AdamDavis There are comments that are posted that no-one should see...ever! I personally wouldn't want to have a large # of users have the ability to see those. – Taryn Apr 3 '15 at 18:38
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    @bluefeet I see how it is; you're currently constructing a new horror movie/website/game/something based on deleted SO comments and you don't want anyone to scoop you. – Servy Apr 3 '15 at 18:53
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    @ bluefeet: Separating out chatty and obsolete comment flags and letting the community (whether 30k or some other level) clear them is a great idea. If you have a moment, would you mind writing that suggestion up? – Jon Ericson Apr 3 '15 at 18:59
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    I could get behind 30k+ users having the ability to moderate comments, but I'd limit the comments they can review to those flagged as "not constructive" or "obsolete". I would prefer to have only moderators handle the "rude or offensive" or "other" comment flags, because these tend to show more severe patterns of behavior and may require moderator intervention. The latter two categories are also far less common than the former. – Brad Larson Apr 3 '15 at 19:03
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    @Servy perhaps, but the current system just ensures abuse the opposite direction. By keeping comments a protected form of communication which requires moderator intervention we find that it's easy for everyone to heap abuse on people. It doesn't even have to be big forms of abuse, but the type of minor sniping that drives new users away. Comments should not be held in such high regard, nor be closed to normal user moderation systems. They should be ephemeral, easily deleted minor bits of clarification. If a user has something important to say, they should be encouraged to add an answer. – Adam Davis Apr 3 '15 at 20:19
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    While I like the idea of more people helping get rid of unnecessary comments I don't think 30k rep privs is the right thing for it for reasons you stated including "we want these users to be answering not doing easy, unfulfilling comment moderation". A comment review queue should be created, and anyone should be able to flag comments that will end up going into this new queue, and people with > 500 rep (or maybe even 5000 rep) will be able to review the comments and take actions from there. This will take the majority of comment moderation away from mods, except the "requires mod attention". – CRABOLO Apr 3 '15 at 20:19
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    @BradLarson the rude and offensive flags are already more likely to be handled by the community than the other comment flags. They tend to get a stronger reaction and are more likely to contain any of the single-vote delete trigger words. What we need is a tool that makes mods aware of users that get unusually many comments removed because they're offensive. The community should be able to remove those, it just shouldn't leave mods in the dark. – Mad Scientist Apr 3 '15 at 20:54
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    The ability to delete comments unilaterally feels a little creepy. It seems like certain users would be able to silently censor others. If deletion and undeletion were removed from this, I think it would greatly reduce the ability for it to be abused. – Travis J Apr 4 '15 at 7:22
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    @TravisJ So maybe instead of a unilateral delete, there should be a voting system for comment deletes like there is for trusted users deleting questions and answers. – pacoverflow Apr 5 '15 at 6:15
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    I apologize if I'm repeating stuff here but I don't really have time to read all these comments. I would love a better comment moderation system and I really like what shog outlined here but I think a lot of the ideas outlined in this post are really bad. I can only imagine the chaos that would ensue if users could unilaterally delete or undelete comments. I certainly don't want to be here when that happens. It's been said many many times that comments are supposed to be ephemeral and require little moderation. – ɥʇǝS Apr 5 '15 at 23:33
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    Editing comments is one of the sneakiest things you can do on the site, because there's no accountability and no notification. It's good that only moderators can do that -- and I've seen even that cause problems, so I sure don't want to increase the number of people who can do that. I also don't think we want non-mods to be able to undelete comments. You once argued that comments are kipple and people shouldn't get attached to them; bringing them back from the dead by anything other than mod action seems inconsistent with that. – Monica Cellio Apr 6 '15 at 1:57
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    I'll take "see deleted comments"; anything more is gravy. It's kinda handy to have when you participate in Metas, you might also see something that should be brought to mods attentions, and ... well, damnit, there's often so much juicy drama in deleted comments. Its so hard to find good stuff to read while eating popcorn... – Won't Apr 6 '15 at 17:55

Comment on (recently) (self) deleted posts

I've occasionally had the situation where I'm trying to explain something to a new user about the site - new post review or just habitual refresh of the front page newest, or watching the chat room feed.

My comment is about how the question doesn't fit, or how it can be improved, or something of that sort. And I click 'Add Comment' and a red error box pops up that I can't comment on deleted or locked posts. I refresh the page... two down votes, a close vote, and yep, its got a pink background.

deleted by user54321 15 seconds ago

Well. Thats not useful at all. I am shut down on my attempt to try to help out the user. They don't have any other posts on the site and at this point the most I could do would be bother a mod to leave a comment there.

So, there's my proposal. For posts deleted less than ${some time} ago, let 30k users still make a comment on the post. This might be as little as an hour or as much as a day. Its meant to allow 30k users to provide guidance about the site to posts that have been recently deleted so that the user would have a better chance of having the next post be one that fits within the scope.

  • 4
    With a ping, same as for moderator comments posted within an hour of deletion. (I would make the limit an hour, same as that case.) – Monica Cellio Apr 5 '15 at 4:09
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    I think this can be added for 10k or 20k privilege, with Monica's restriction. I think there is no reason this should be 30k. – nhahtdh Apr 5 '15 at 7:04
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    I'd want this for any deleted post, but it's a good start. – Won't Apr 6 '15 at 17:52
  • @Won't it could be read as "Comment on deleted posts" or "Comment on self deleted posts" or "Comment on recently deleted posts" or "Comment on recently self deleted posts" - any of those variations. Just a question of how restrictive to make it. – user213963 Apr 6 '15 at 18:09
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    Alternatively, make it easy to open a chat with that user. – Bergi Jun 16 '15 at 20:01
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    I've had a few (admittedly rare, but significant enough to stick in my memory) instances where user A posts a question, and user B, who doesn't see the merit of the question, posts a comment that leads A to frustratedly delete the question while I'm still writing my answer. It's always bugged me that in this situation, SO's policy of not being able to contact users out of the blue prevents me from communicating with A or B about the matter. – hobbs Jul 9 '15 at 6:22

Allow 30k (beta 10k) users to see deleted posts directly from a user's profile, and/or to optionally include it in search results.

Viewing deleted posts from the profile was proposed in the past for 10k or 20k users, but people said that that would be too many people looking at stuff someone deleted. 30k is a smaller amount of people, so it might make more sense to give it to them.

Including it in the search results would be in the same vein, i think. Perhaps a user remembers a certain deleted post and wants to find it using search.
To avoid flooding search results with all the deleted stuff, it would only be included by a deleted:yes flag in the search.


In fact, the link might be redundant if we add search. You could just do user:12345 deleted:yes to get their deleted posts.


mattdm gave a great example use-case in a comment that i'll copy here:

An example I can think of: a post looks suspiciously spammy, but it's kind of on the edge. I look to see if the user has a pattern of such questions, and maybe see one half-decent post with a few upvotes -- it'd be nice to be able to see if they've got previously-deleted low-quality posts or not.

  • Would you like to extend your answer to describe what the value or benefit of this is? Does it benefit the site, and if so, how? – D.W. Apr 5 '15 at 21:08
  • Better moderation tools? – Scimonster Apr 5 '15 at 21:09
  • I don't follow you yet. Can you elaborate on how seeing deleted posts in someone's profile (or being able to search for deleted posts) enables me to do a better job of moderation? For instance, maybe you can outline a couple of example scenarios? – D.W. Apr 5 '15 at 21:30
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    That would be great. There're lots of useful and fun deleted posts on SO, so being able to search for them would be awesome. Couldn't care less about viewing deleted posts of specific users though. – Athari Apr 5 '15 at 22:08
  • Yep yep yep yep yep. – Won't Apr 6 '15 at 17:51
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    An example I can think of: a post looks suspiciously spammy, but it's kind of on the edge. I look to see if the user has a pattern of such questions, and maybe see one half-decent post with a few upvotes -- it'd be nice to be able to see if they've got previously-deleted low-quality posts or not. – mattdm Apr 19 '15 at 1:47
  • @mattdm Great example, i've added to the post. – Scimonster Apr 19 '15 at 5:27
up vote 75 down vote
+100

Expedited on-hold & reopen actions

At 30k (10k beta), grant the following privileges:

  • Instantly put a question on hold for any reason other than duplicate, provided that:

    • The question has not been previously closed and reopened.
    • The question, if in the review queue, does not have pending "leave open" votes.
    • (Maybe - open for discussion): the question is on the front page or, failing the ability to implement that, "new" (definition TBD).
  • Instantly reopen a question that was put on hold by a 30k user, provided that:

    • The question has been edited since it was put on hold.

We have the dupe-hammer specifically for duplicates, and tying it to reputation on specific tags makes sense. We need the expertise (and site experience) of specific users, not any old user with a certain rep total, to handle those.

The other close reasons -- off-topic, too broad, opinion-based, and unclear -- do not usually require such expertise. If you have 30k rep on a site you should have a pretty good idea of what's answerable and in-scope and what's not. When the decision is not likely to be controversial, we should empower high-rep users to act quickly, before too many answers start showing up.

Just as we want to put problem questions on hold quickly so they can be fixed, we also want to help them get reopened once the problem has been addressed. So I'm proposing that the insta-hold be reversible; a question that was insta-held and then fixed should be insta-openable. This insta-reopen does not apply to questions that were put on hold (or closed) through other means (community vote or moderator action).

One might argue that the reopen part is unnecessary; the community can take care of that, after all. But on some sites we've seen new users (who don't necessarily understand Stack Exchange) get upset when their (salvagable) questions are put on hold and then it takes a while to get them reopened. Let's trust that our 30k users can tell when a question is no longer too broad (etc); enable them to get the question back on its feet so the asker can get answers, and if there are still problems with the question, the usual community actions are still available.

  • 3
    I don't think we want insta-migration, though, except maybe to your own meta. I'm not sure what to do about that. – Monica Cellio Apr 3 '15 at 19:58
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    At the very least, I'd want to add a few more qualifications to this. For example, I don't think upvoted questions should be one-click closable. I might make it so that any voting member could override the one-click close vote with a single reopen vote, not just 30k users. Otherwise, I think this could turn into a disaster on a site like Stack Overflow where we have a number of 30k users that are... aggressive with their close votes. – Brad Larson Apr 3 '15 at 20:12
  • 8
    Maybe this needs to be adjusted for some sites? I participate on several smaller and medium-sized sites and our problem is getting questions put on hold before too many answers roll in. With my proposal, at worst somebody can do this once per question, the community can override, and, well, somebody who consistently misuses site privileges after warnings can find he's lost them. – Monica Cellio Apr 3 '15 at 20:49
  • 3
    @BradLarson a "leave open" vote in review blocks this. I've seen a lot of questions that ought to be closed nonetheless be upvoted (including, but not limited to, hot network questions), so I don't think a lone upvote should stop it. – Monica Cellio Apr 3 '15 at 20:51
  • 2
    I really don't notice a problem with people being too eager to put bad questions on hold (although maybe I'm just one of them) so I foresee a trivial amount of abuse at the most. It would however help so very much with keeping the site clean that even that little bit of possible abuse would be entirely offset against it. I do believe though that a gold badge should be required -- certain things like 'unclear', 'lacking information', etc often require some knowledge of the language to properly determine. – Jeroen Vannevel Apr 4 '15 at 0:06
  • 4
    @JeroenVannevel a gold tag badge would make this completely useless on my sites. We have very few people who even have the dupe-hammer. Perhaps there are other badges that people should have first, but if so they should be general site-caretaking badges. This is why I excluded duplicates; those do need the expertise in the particular area. – Monica Cellio Apr 5 '15 at 3:55
  • @MonicaCellio Perhaps you have some ideas on how well my suggestion for double-badger superpowers would work — or fail to work — on smaller sites. Or is it possible that the need for such just does not arise on smaller sites? – tchrist Apr 25 '15 at 12:32
  • Maybe a single "reopen" vote the reopen queue should then undo it, converting the close vote into a normal close vote. – Ian Ringrose Jun 17 '15 at 14:26
  • @IanRingrose that seems reasonable (though a vote from the author probably shouldn't count here). – Monica Cellio Jun 17 '15 at 15:10
  • 1
    It might be good to have a score requirement too, like deleting answers. Negative score? – Kevin Jul 1 '15 at 17:31
  • @Kevin closing is temporary and doesn't affect visibility, unlike deleting, so I don't think we need anything too strict here. On some sites close-worthy questions get upvotes nonetheless, so I wouldn't want to hinder that. But I could see the logic of a restriction like "score no higher than +5" or something in that ballpark, I guess. Any threshold would need to be evaluated and possibly adjusted. – Monica Cellio Jul 1 '15 at 17:50

Expedited capability for migration to your site

At 30k on graduated sites (and 10k on beta sites) grant users the power to suggest migration in a more pro-active way to "their powerhouse".

Example: Say you have >30k rep on site X, but also associate with site Y where you have [not a lot of rep], provide some capability to migrate content from site Y to site X since you're well-equipped with the know-how of what goes/doesn't on site X.


I am a high-rep user on TeX.SE, and often find questions on Stack Overflow (SO) that is (La)TeX-specific. As such, I flag these questions, suggesting migration to TeX.SE since the fit is mostly perfect. It just makes sense to move the post to a more suited site.

However, since I'm a lower-rep user on SO, I can only flag a question and suggest TeX.SE as a better location (I assume it's treated similarly on the back-end to a vote-to-close). This flagged is effective < 5% of the time. I think the reason here is that the post ends up in the Close Review queue, which is a particular problem on SO. From a TeX.SE point-of-view, SO almost seems like the garbage-collector of posts since it has so much coming its way, from all walks of life.

I don't see much benefit in leaving formerly on-topic posts on SO rather than migrating it to a site that is tailored to address those issues. This will naturally be the case as more proposals on Area 51 launch.

In short, if you have interest in a specific field of expertise (read: high-rep on a specific site), you should have a pretty good idea of what is on-topic on that particular site (read: you've hung around long enough to know what's going on) and therefore should know what fits on that site if it lands elsewhere on the network that you might troll on-and-off.

While my suggestion is based on an SO-TeX.SE relationship, it may hold in general. However, I wouldn't know how to address this speculation with some circumstantial evidence from SEDE, say, mainly because there's no easy way to perform cross-network queries/analysis.

This proposal might be consideration for something like an "In-migration review queue" rather than granting "high-rep privileges on a low-rep associated site". This proposal might need some baking...

  • 10
    Interesting idea. Have you read Respect the community – your own, and others’? It might help you refine your idea. – Jon Ericson Apr 3 '15 at 21:41
  • @JonEricson: Haven't, but will look into it, thanks. If this idea is beyond the 30K question scope, yet still interesting, I could migrate it to a full feature-request. – Werner Apr 3 '15 at 22:03
  • 6
    Meh, I'm not sure I want users associated with a specific site to have actual power in migrating stuff there. That comes at the risk of migrating away perfectly on-topic stuff on the source site just because users would "rather like it" on "their powerhouse". Migration is just too heavy an action to leave it to the lower folks, especially ones who don't have much reputation on the source site. – Christian Rau Apr 4 '15 at 0:13
  • 2
    @ChristianRau: Originally, almost everything computer-related seemed to be on-topic on Stack Overflow. Now though, there are over 100 child-sites on the SE network with far better specialization than what Stack Overflow can provide, since questions may end up being washed out in the diluted stream of posts. Over time and in general, many on-topic questions on a source site will become far-better suited for some target/child site, despite the fact that there's still some form of on-topic-ness on the source. Dilution is most likely inevitable, but this suggestion might help mitigate that. To each their own though. – Werner Apr 4 '15 at 0:48
  • 4
    I participated in a private beta that had some overlap with a graduated site. So when anyone posted a question that fit the scope of the graduated site, a very senior member of that graduated site went and posted comments that say "This belongs on X.SE". We don't want that at all. The user chose the post the question on that site, so we should respect that unless it is off-topic on the original site. – psubsee2003 Apr 4 '15 at 8:32
  • 4
    @psubsee2003: The migration suggestions I've made have been between two graduated sites and mostly for users who don't know about the target site. And saying "The user chose [to] post the question on [some] site" doesn't mean they know what they're doing. While you may have been around a while, some posters are desperate, and things end up in the Stack Overflow post-mill. Specifically, (La)TeX-related questions not only is a better fit on TeX - LaTeX, more comprehensive and often superior answers are given on that site than on Stack Overflow. – Werner Apr 4 '15 at 13:53
  • 2
    @Werner you didn't mention graduated sites in your suggestion, hence my comment. But I still don't agree on overriding the wishes of the original poster when the topic is on-topic in both locations. When there could be a better site, you should suggest it via comment, not just arbitrarily decide to move it for them because you think it would be better, – psubsee2003 Apr 4 '15 at 14:04
  • 1
    @Werner and ultimately topic "turfing" isn't limited to beta sites. What's to stop a 30K user from running through a site and moving everything related to their preferred site. This needs a lot more restrictions. (1) More than just a minimum rep on the current site (maybe 10K on site 1, 30K on site 2 . (2) Only migrate when there are no upvoted answers and the questions is a week old (or more). – psubsee2003 Apr 4 '15 at 14:09
  • 3
    There's nothing wrong in enlightening a new user about other sites where he can post his questions. But a high-rep user from that other site just voting to move things over to the site he thinks it belongs is an entirely different thing. @psubsee2003 Ardesses the exact problem here. At least there should be loads of additional restrictions to such an ability, probably up to so much that you can just leave it to a mdoerator once it's closed anyway. – Christian Rau Apr 4 '15 at 15:06
  • 9
    Being an expert in a prospective migration target doesn't make you an expert in the other site. I'm very uncomfortable with sites being able to poach questions from other sites. Maybe you should only be able to do this for questions closed (not on hold, but closed) as off-topic on the other site -- in other words, you can't poach questions that are ok there (or are new enough that they might be being fixed), but if another site has said "no", that'd be different. – Monica Cellio Apr 5 '15 at 4:07
  • @MonicaCellio: This is a good suggestion. I'll incorporate some of the said comments (others included) to refine my proposal. – Werner Apr 5 '15 at 5:17
  • 12
    Seems to me like before you get any sort of expedited migration power, you should have a large amount of rep on BOTH sites. A question shouldn't be migrated away unless it is off-topic on the original site. A question shouldn't be migrated to unless it is on-topic on the target site. And a question shouldn't be migrated at all unless it's actually a good question. Users with 200 rep on Site A and 30k rep on Site B wouldn't be a good judge of what should be migrated to or from Site A. You need to be familiar with both sites! – nhgrif Apr 5 '15 at 16:51
  • 3
    Maybe add migration targets to sites you have >30k on, which (when picked) let other closevoters vote to migrate there? You couldn't cast your own closevote unless you already had 3k on the source site; if you don't, it'd flag. – cpast Apr 9 '15 at 22:19

Realtime and smarter feeds


Many processes in Stack Exchange are cached, or have delays, that enable the higher performance of the site.

I propose that these caches are selectively removed for 30K users, and that feeds become personalized and more "real time". For example:

  • Review Queue "icon" on the top bar does not count items you have skipped
  • 'live' feeds of 'favourite' tags - tags you subscribe to.
  • 'subscribe' to posts - get comment, answer, and edit notifications on 'favourite' questions.
  • other... (feel free to edit with suggestions)

Many of these suggestions are items that, I presume, are hard to implement for performance reasons (caching normally is), but people with 30K have earned the "privilege" of a more personalized experience.

  • I loved this. A 30k user would have a priority access to the site. But, implementation can be tough. – user178465 Apr 5 '15 at 8:35
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    I would love, love love love the ability to subscribe to a post. Good grief, I can't even begin to imagine how that would change some of the tedious stuff I have to do every day. Don't know about the rest of this, but that one'd be a winner in my book. – Shog9 Apr 5 '15 at 16:28
  • @Shog9 You could script it by periodically polling API methods posts/revisions and posts/comments. Up to 100 posts being monitored at a given time, checked once every 30 minutes (2 API calls), still fits into 10000 requests quota. And posts from the same site (meta, meta.so) could be pooled into one request. (Also, /questions/{ids}/answers for answers). – user259867 Apr 5 '15 at 18:52
  • @Shog9 - I proposed a feature similar to subscribing to a post (provided that the tab was open) meta.stackexchange.com/q/246404/178816 – Travis J Apr 6 '15 at 4:41

Increase the weight of moderation action.

  • One spam or offensive flag counts for three
  • One vote to close counts for three
  • One vote to delete counts for two
  • One upvote on a tag synonym counts for two (downvotes excluded because this immediately deletes the suggestion)

Remove restrictions on moderation rate-limiting.

  • Remove a quantity-based flag limit, and introduce an hourly flag limit of, say, 20.
  • Same as above for close votes, but instead set the limit higher on Stack Overflow.

For spam/offensive, these things aren't hard to tell, and this just saves time. For close votes, one 30k user and two <30k users, or two 30k users seems balanced. For deletion - deletion of content that should be deleted can take a while, and this expedites it. Same thing with tag synonyms.

w.r.t. restriction removal: 30k users who may be hitting the close limit on some sites could do better if they just came back to it in an hour and looked at some more questions. A rolling rate-limit seems effective.

  • 2
    Only 20 flags/hour? – bjb568 Apr 5 '15 at 18:16
  • 1
    @bjb It was sort of an arbitrary choice. – Zyerah Apr 5 '15 at 18:39
  • 2
    That seems lower than now since people usually only flag for 1 or 2 hours/day. 100 flags/hour seems more suitable. – bjb568 Apr 5 '15 at 19:34
  • @bjb568 [shrug], if SE considers this, it'll be debated enough internally to come to a reasonable value. The value I put here isn't too important. – Zyerah Apr 5 '15 at 19:36
  • 1
    Does anyone with 20k, or 10k, or even 3k, even have the slightest chance of capping their 100 flags/day? I have trouble spending more than 30 a day even going through all my reviews and bumming around for a few hours in new posts. – Nathan Tuggy Apr 24 '15 at 20:55
  • 2
    @Nathan Flags, not so much. Close votes, yes. The point is to allow effectively unlimited flags and votes, while still keeping a rate limit so it isn't abused terribly. – Zyerah Apr 24 '15 at 21:14
  • @Emrakul: Fair enough; perhaps you could reword to clarify the more important bit and mention specific cv rate limits. – Nathan Tuggy Apr 24 '15 at 21:18
  • @bjb how are you going to raise 100 flags per hour (i.e. one flag per 36 seconds)? This is absolutely impossible, unless you are explicitly searching for the posts to flag, which is discouraged (and even in this case it'd be pretty difficult). – nicael Dec 24 '15 at 16:05
  • @nicael Explicitly search for bad posts? Peh, just see the front page. If I didn't have 3k I could get thru 100 flags in 3 minutes just combing thru a tag page. – bjb568 Dec 24 '15 at 16:57
  • @bjb in this case, it's applicable only to Stack Overflow. – nicael Dec 24 '15 at 17:17
  • @nicael Yeah, I suppose, but SO also has a huge number of 30k users. – bjb568 Dec 24 '15 at 17:40
  • 1
    @NathanTuggy I don't know bout others, But I've spent 100 flags in 4 hrs. You get a lot of bad posts on Stack Overflow. – Bhargav Rao Oct 29 '16 at 11:05
  • @BhargavRao: Yes, I was speaking from an SO perspective at the time, and, if memory serves, spending 3-4 hours a day on moderation. I still have trouble imagining how anyone could hold up under the load of flagging so much, unless perhaps they were doing a dedicated tag cleanup. (That wouldn't likely be sustainable anyway for long.) – Nathan Tuggy Oct 29 '16 at 11:08
  • @Nathan, The new answers to old questions tool for 10k, is a gold mine of flags. There are 25 pages. If we go through the 25 pages at once, it'll be easily 40-50 flags. (Get to 10k on ELL asap, You'll get to know that ;) ...). There are many other users who cap 100 flags almost everyday. It just needs patience imo. EDIT: Flagged 2 new NAAs even as I was writing this comment – Bhargav Rao Oct 29 '16 at 11:12
  • @BhargavRao: Even when I had 2k privileges when ELL was in beta, and was spending more time in 2k tools than any two other users (OK, hyperbole), I didn't raise many flags at all. Nowhere near 100. (ELL gets much less traffic, obviously.) – Nathan Tuggy Oct 29 '16 at 11:13

Unlimited close votes

At 30k on graduated sites (and 10k on beta sites) grant users the following powers:

  1. Unlimited close votes (like moderators currently have).
  2. Unlimited reviews in the Close review queue.

The main way to keep the high quality of Stack Exchange is to fight the waves of low quality questions with close votes. Many users join this epic battle on daily basis, but they are limited to a meager 20/40 reviews and/or votes per day. At 30k we can assume they know what they're doing, and lift this limit.

Disclaimer: personally, I don't take part in the epic battle described above for reasons beyond the scope of this question. However, having such power would be a great incentive, if not to me, surely for others.

  • 54
    "At 30K we can safely assume they know what they're doing" I completely disagree. Rep does not now nor will it ever = "knowledge of moderating/the site", "good decision making", "careful attitude considering all parameters to make a good judgement" etc. That said, that's another issue, so +1 from me for your actual idea. – James Apr 3 '15 at 21:29
  • @James fair enough, still stick to my belief but removed the "safely". :-) – Shadow the Welcoming Wizard Apr 3 '15 at 21:31
  • 2
    You know you are up for a tough battle to get this passed Shog9? – rene Apr 4 '15 at 8:28
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    Very, very few people hit the current limits on a regular basis; not sure this is much of a privilege. Also, unlimited non-binding votes potentially just creates more work for other users. I'm pretty sympathetic to the desire to make close votes more effective for trusted users, but more weak opinions isn't likely to accomplish much. – Shog9 Apr 4 '15 at 16:05
  • 1
    @rene whoops, looks like you just Summoned him, lol... anyway missed that whole discussion there otherwise wouldn't have suggested it. – Shadow the Welcoming Wizard Apr 4 '15 at 17:37
  • @Shog9 fair enough, wasn't aware of that. If it matters, I'm really for what Jon offered himself, comments moderation is cool. :-) – Shadow the Welcoming Wizard Apr 4 '15 at 17:38
  • I would see this coupled with either/both % of times I used all my votes and/or % of votes cast that effectively lead a question to be closed. – Braiam Apr 4 '15 at 18:10
  • Unlimited might be bad, but double-badger superpowers just might work. – tchrist Apr 25 '15 at 12:33

Ability to migrate a comment conversation to chat

Comment moderation has been touched on in multiple answers so far, but I'm going to add one more.

I suggest that we give 30k users the ability to move comments to chat and purge the extended conversation in a single click. We all know that extended discussions happen all the time - these could be to clarify the post, help another user understand an answer, debugging, or general off-topic/non-constructive comments.

While the standard notice appears asking users to move to chat when the discussion gets lengthy, it requires that all users must have the required 20 rep to participate. If a new user doesn't have that the rep, then a migration to chat is impossible and it continues to takes place in the comments.

Currently, moderators have the ability to bypass the rep requirement and move comments to chat when we get a system generated "excessive comments flag".

I propose that 30k users have the same ability to migrate the comments to chat when needed. Users would have access to a link to move the comments and purge them from the post in a single action. This would give users the ability to help curb possible off-topic conversations that take away from the post and move it into the proper channel...chat.

  • It looks like this doesn't address the potential for abuse (such as pointed out in this comment). Allowing a single user to wipe all the comments under a question, without requiring any confirmation from anyone else, even under their own answer, sounds like something that could be abused. Do you have any thoughts on whether that will be a problem and/or any ways to mitigate the risk? – D.W. Apr 7 '15 at 0:16
  • 2
    @D.W. the comments will be moved into chat and purged from the post. Since they are in chat, it is slightly different then deleting the comments because a user is irritated. Once the comments are moved, there is a link left pointing to the chat conversation. – Taryn Apr 7 '15 at 1:52
  • Ahh, I didn't realize it left a public link pointing to the chat conversation. That makes sense -- thank you for the explanation. – D.W. Apr 7 '15 at 4:15
  • 8
    This would require some sort of community generated comment otherwise this gives 30k users the ability to silently delete all comments (by deleting the notification comment). – Elysian Fields Jul 5 '15 at 18:06

Nothing.

What differentiates a 20k and 30k user? Not much.

In comparison to 1-500, 1k-3k, 3k-10k, and 10k-20k, the difference from 20k-30k is pretty minimal. It is, frankly, not unexpected that 20k users will eventually reach 30k, and at that point, they either know how to use the site or they don't.

Adding a new reward tier for its own sake is a bad idea, particularly when we're already aware that it's not as though we'll trust 30k users significantly more.

Therefore, I'd like to suggest taking a couple of your favorite proposals from this list, and lumping them into the 20k privileges.

  • 7
    How will your suggestion to do nothing for 30k and instead lump the good suggestions into 20k do anything to address the perceived issue of enthusiasm drop-off — you know, the very thing which adding bright shiny POWAHS at 30k was hoping to fix by motivating people to keep on playing when they’d previously run out of shinies at 10k or 20k? – tchrist Apr 5 '15 at 23:58
  • 9
    @tchrist Gamification for its own sake is misplaced. – Zyerah Apr 6 '15 at 0:09
  • 1
    @Emrakul It's not for its own sake when it comes with privileges deemed useful and which you would "lump into the 20k privileges" anyway. – Christian Rau Apr 6 '15 at 0:28
  • 1
    @Christian I think my point may be unclear. I'm not saying "don't add privileges," I'm saying "don't make an arbitrary new tier for privileges; just add to the existing and entirely functional one." – Zyerah Apr 6 '15 at 0:30
  • 2
    @Emrakul I know. And I'm saying "add an arbitrary new tier, because it helps motivation while at the same time not being just for gamification alone". – Christian Rau Apr 6 '15 at 0:32
  • 1
    Agreed. It is sort of demeaning to imagine users that would suddenly gain some new enthusiasm due to some minor toy they get at 30K. I recently reached 20K on SO, but I actually don't even know what new privileges I got and don't care about them. For many, I would guess participating in the site is an addictive behavior that is not really related to badges and awards and privileges. – user203905 Jul 12 '15 at 21:13

Grant 30k users (10k on betas) the following privileges on non-meta sites:

  • If two users have flagged a comment as "too chatty", "obsolete", or "not constructive", and at least one of them is a 30k user,and no one has disputed the flag, delete that comment immediately. (Exception: if a 30k user flags a comment under their own answer/question, then they are treated as a regular user for that flag: 30k users don't have the power of accelerated deletion on comments on their own post.)

  • Add a review queue visible to 30k users that lets them view comments others have flagged as "too chatty", "obsolete", or "not constructive". Obviously, the identity of the user who flagged the comment should not be displayed.

These privileges would only apply on non-meta sites.


This allows 30k users ability to help moderate / clean up some comments.

It does not sound especially prone to abuse. We already advise people that comments are second-class citizens and might be deleted at any time. As Adam Davis wrote, comments should be for ephemeral, easily deleted minor bits of clarification. If a user has something important to say, that should normally appear in a new answer or an edit to an existing question or answer. So, if a comment occasionally gets deleted that shouldn't have been, this seems acceptable: the benefit of cleaning up noisy comments seems to outweigh the risks.

The exception for comments on the flagger's post is to prevent abuse (e.g., to prevent a 30k user from deleting a comment that is critical of their question/answer), as suggested by Brad Larson.

Meta sites are different; disagreement and controversy is expected and useful there. As a safeguard, meta sites would be exempted.

(This proposal may need careful thought and possibly further adjustments... Feedback welcome.)

Fancy hats

I propose that 30K users should have access to a range of fancy hats, similar to those we saw during "hat week"

  • 2
    As much as I'd love a nice Montecristi, Jon did say "not physical items". – Shog9 Apr 4 '15 at 17:02
  • 33
    @Shog9 - Digital hats are not physical items. They're digital. – Richard Apr 4 '15 at 17:23
  • 2
    Also, can I have a nice SE hat? I missed out on all the "site bling" they posted out when Scifi:SE was setting up... – Richard Apr 4 '15 at 17:23
  • 17
    Digital hats? – Shog9 Apr 4 '15 at 18:49
  • 1
    @Shog9 - With new hats, obviously... – Richard Apr 4 '15 at 18:59
  • A good hat. – Rob Jul 29 at 0:06

It might be time to add more cross-site privileges. For example, if I have 30k on one site, I might be given the right to see deleted posts on all sites. Alternatively, I might get a higher flag weight on all sites.

Another option would be to let 30k users edit questions on any site. Answers are different since you need to know a bit about the subject to be able to edit an answer safely. Questions, on the other hand, tend to be easier to grok and most edits will be to improve clarity and/or grammar. So, if I have 30k on one site, I should be able to directly edit questions on any other site. Perhaps with some extra requirements: I must also have a copy-editor or at least Strunk & White badge on the 30k site and, for example, at least 500 rep on the target site.

Having 30k on any site suggests that a user is at least relatively well aware of the SE model. I think that 30k is a good threshold at which certain privileges can be transferred to accounts on other sites.

  • 17
    I often see 30k (and even 100k) rep users on Stack Overflow suggest poor migrations to other sites. While they may be familiar with their site, I really don't think they necessarily have a good handle on all sites, or even the norms of what is acceptable to have in a question or answer on another site (pardon me while I go and edit out all the 'Hint's on Math.SE). – user213963 Apr 4 '15 at 16:12
  • @MichaelT agreed. That's why I added a requirement to have at least 500 rep on the target site and did not mention migrations (though I did think of it). I've seen too much crap being migrated by well meaning but uninformed users. – terdon Apr 4 '15 at 16:25
  • 1
    Perhaps 1 site × 100k, or 2 sites × 50k, or 3 sites × 33k, or 4 sites × 25k, or 5 sites × 20k, or 10 sites × 10k? :) More seriously, the new gold Illuminator badge might be worthy of cross-site editing privs. – tchrist Apr 4 '15 at 17:47
  • 2
    Alternative: allow edits on meta sites after you get 30k anywhere. Metas don't have suggested edits, and it becomes annoying to see grammatical or typographical errors that could be trivially fixed ... if you were on your meta. – muru Dec 29 '15 at 11:37
  • @muru that's a great idea! Please post it as an answer so it can be upvoted. – terdon Dec 29 '15 at 14:00
  • @terdon posted: meta.stackexchange.com/a/272089/270345 – muru Dec 29 '15 at 17:07

Trusted on meta.stackexchange.com

+1000 rep on meta.stackexhange.com

Users who have 30k+ reputation on a particular site surely know enough about the stackoverflow system to fully participate on meta.stackexhange.com, why not carry over some of their rep, say, 1k over to meta.stackexchange.com?

This would be a reward similar to how after 200 rep on any site, you start at 100 rep on all sites, but it would only be applied to meta.stackexchange.com.

Maybe it'll even get more established users participating in this meta.

Increased tag synonym privilege

Users with this privilege can suggest and vote on tag synonyms with lessened requirements; instead of a score of 5, they only need to have either a score of 1 (demonstrating involvement), or for the tag to be below a certain threshold of usage (demonstrating not-going-to-hurt-anything).


I often notice tags that ought to be synonyms of other tags, but I cannot make the suggestion because I do not have the requisite 5 score in the target tag, and very few other people would be around to vote on it at all, because the tag simply does not have that many questions (or does not have enough rate of questions to deliberately work towards the 5 score). This privilege would allow people to perform more cleanup of the long tail.

(That said, I'm not sure I want this to actually be the shiny new 30k privilege, because I think it ought to be available much sooner than that.)

  • 2
    +1 for both the mention of this privilege, and the final sentence. – sumelic Dec 24 '15 at 17:49

Immediately protect questions having 3 or more answers.

10K users can vote delete questions two days after these are closed. Users with twice as much rep, at 20K, gain privilege to vote immediately if closed question has score -3 or less.

15K users can protect questions a day after these are posted. Similar to elevated delete vote privileges, system could grant users with twice as much rep, at 30K, a privilege to protect immediately if question has 3 or more answers (possibly including deleted ones).

Expedited Reopen for questions on hold as unclear

At 30k on graduated sites (and 10k on beta sites) grant users the ability to immediately reopen questions which:

  1. are on hold as unclear (but not yet closed)
  2. have been edited by the original question asker

This is a limited form of the suggestion from @MonicaCellio. On Photo-SE, we get a lot of vague questions where more information really is needed to provide good answers, and recently we've been putting them on hold very quickly (which is good, because it prevents the question from accumulating a bunch of guesses at what the possible question might be as answers). But, we're a little slower at reopening these when the clarification is provided, leading to a period of frustration. This would allow high-rep users to end that frustration quickly.

(I wouldn't suggest this as the sole 30k privilege, but maybe one of several.)

  • I'm afraid that this sounds to me like requiring every homeowner in town to carry a shotgun because you saw a coyote on your block. I'm not sure that reopening is a problem on other sites, and more importantly, since you've been able to fix the closure problem socially, you should be able to do the same with this. – Josh Caswell Apr 9 '15 at 23:52
  • @Josh I'm not sure I'm seeing the analogy. What does the coyote represent, and where are the required shotguns? – mattdm Apr 10 '15 at 0:21
  • The coyote on your block is the problem of slow reopenings you have on Photography; the shotgun is the extreme power that every 30k user anywhere on the network gets. – Josh Caswell Apr 10 '15 at 2:28
  • Well, yes, that's obviously the parallel you draw, but I'm still not seeing how these things are like a coyote on the block or like a shotgun in any meaningful way. – mattdm Apr 10 '15 at 2:41
  • I think this is an excessive power given to too many people based on a minor, localized, problem (that has a better solution anyways). – Josh Caswell Apr 10 '15 at 2:48
  • 3
    Maybe this should be immediately reopen AND answer, with the answer being required. – Ian Ringrose Jun 17 '15 at 14:41

More Close Votes

Increased Review Queue Limits


This is similar to, but different than Shadow Wizard's proposal for unlimited close votes

Some of my logic for this request is echoed in this post on Meta.Programmers.

The TL;DR version is that community members who are active in community moderation will frequently run out of close votes on a daily basis. Likewise, they'll be prevented from using the review queues after they hit 20 reviews.

Having more close votes means low quality questions can be closed in a more timely basis which provides important feedback about the question to the person asking the question. Poor questions that linger can attract less than helpful answers, and they give a negative impression of the site to other visitors.

If you search the The Whiteboard's chat history for phrases like "out of close votes" or "need more close votes" you'll see that it is a frequent issue for the review queue regulars.

Shadow's proposal calls for unlimited close votes whereas my proposal only calls for an increase in close votes. Please note that I'd take unlimited close votes over have no increase at all, but I'm not certain that unlimited votes is necessarily the next logical step.

Guaranteed evaluation to status-* tag for open s at respective per site meta in one or two months.


Users having substantial experience of access to (almost) full privileges after 20K are likely to be interested in features worth considering.

Attention to their requests would show that Stack Exchange listens to their community.


Requirement for request to stay open to be eligible is primarily in order to prevent temptation of reposting prior popular requests to "force" their evaluation. (Reopening of incorrectly closed or clarified question should probably reset the "evaluation timer".)

Also, to keep system stable:

  • there should be some kind of rate limiting, something like one (or two, or four) eligible requests a year
  • eligible questions should have feature-request tag from the very beginning, to avoid complications related to retagging, in a way similar to how it is done for .
  • 1
    attentive readers may notice sort of escape hatch here, in the form of migration from per-site meta to MSE. This... "feature" is expected to be used judiciously, assuming an appropriate scrutiny of such migrations by source and target meta communitites – gnat Apr 7 '15 at 7:43

Kick questions off the Hot Network Questions list

(or at least vote to do that.)

Many Hot Network Questions are great, and they are great ways to funnel traffic to the better parts of a site and increase engagement.

Other Hot Network Questions, however, are not great. The mechanism is strongly biased towards junk-food, lowest-common-denominator questions, and it has a terrible feedback loop that makes those issues self-reinforcing. For many 30k+ users, seeing those HNQs triggers an immediate reaction along the lines of

this question does not represent the best of my site,

possibly accompanied by expletives that share an acronym with the French Federation of Speleology.

Allow us to make that explicit in ways that count: allow us to (vote to) remove questions from that list. If, say, five 30k+ users from a smallish site vote that way, then that's a strong indicator that the question's presence of that list is probably grating to a significant fraction of the committed userbase.

This might require too much special casing to be realistic, but I think something like it is worth proposing. It falls somewhere in between moderation and the content maintenance that Uphill Luge was talking about in his deleted answer.

Let 30k users administer wiki-locked questions and curate their pages.

This might include:

  • Applying a wiki answer lock to a question closed as "not constructive", "too broad", or (on SO) "recommendation" (possibly and older than D and with at least N score) (This could require voting, like deletion, rather than being unilateral.)
  • Converting a historical lock to a wiki answer lock (not a likely feature)
  • Editing a question that has a wiki answer lock, not just the answers.
  • Commenting despite the lock; deleting and editing others' comments
  • Deleting/undeleting answers regardless of score

The simplified version of this would be let 30k users ignore wiki answer locks: they can act on the question and answers as they normally would.


The idea here is to let users who are clearly great at creating good stuff work on some of the most potentially useful, but also controversial and usually messy, stuff on their site, to help bring it up to snuff. Generally someone with this rep level has a certain sense of ownership of a tag or set of tags, and wiki-locked questions can be important assets for a tag.

This isn't something that moderators are able to do -- limitations of time and subject proficiency mean that it's most sensible for them to apply the lock, prune the answers, and then just stand back for other users to do the editing. Allowing high-rep users to handle the whole affair takes moderators out of a loop they maybe don't need to be in, and the abuse potential is low since the power is so narrow.

Problems with this include the fact that I may be looking at this through a Stack Overflow lens. Wiki-answer locks are fairly rare, and I'm not sure this is even relevant for sites outside the Trilogy; they may just not have posts that warrant the lock.

For SO at least, though, this might help alleviate the rarity -- with more people able to meaningfully interact with those locked posts, it makes more sense to apply the locks widely.

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    What do you mean by a "wiki answer lock"? I know about Community Wiki (everybody can edit), and I know about locks (nobody can do anything, including vote), but what is a wiki answer lock? – Monica Cellio Apr 6 '15 at 15:05
  • This thing: meta.stackexchange.com/a/182572 @MonicaCellio. It may indeed be too SO-specific, as I feared. – Josh Caswell Apr 6 '15 at 16:23
  • Oh, interesting idea. Looks to be SO-specific at the moment, which explains why I've never seen it (even as a moderator who can see all the annotation types). – Monica Cellio Apr 6 '15 at 16:25
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    It's not actually SO-specific anymore. I suppose I should write that up. – Shog9 Apr 6 '15 at 17:16
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    I'm +1-ing this because I want 30ks to have the ability to edit locked questions. – Won't Apr 6 '15 at 17:50

Ability to ping two or more users in a single comment

If the reason it's limited to one ping per comment is to prevent abuse, then surely such trusted users should not be subject to that rule.

It would be a small yet sometimes genuinely useful tool imo. Not that I'd get to use it for a while.

  • I like this idea, but maybe it should be linked to the user's comment history (frequently highly-upvoted comments, low flags, high number of accepted comment flags) rather than rep, which isn't even tied to comments. – Zibbobz Jun 22 '15 at 15:02
  • @Zibbobz that sounds a lot more complex. Privileges are only based on rep AFAIK, so you're talking about a whole new system. I'm just suggesting something that could work with the current system, the same way other non-rep-related privileges work. Not to say your suggestion wouldn't be better, but unlikely to be implemented mostly due to the cost vs the opportunity. – Dom Jun 22 '15 at 16:13
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    I like this idea, but it has a major drawback: The mentions causing the pinging will be visible for everyone and lower-rep users will be confused why it doesn't work for their own comments once they've seen them. It's not intuitive that (multi-)pinging ability could be related to rep or comment history. – das-g Mar 3 '17 at 13:34
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    @das-g I see where you're coming from, though bear in mind there are many facets of stack exchange that share the same predicament. This would be as much a part of the discovery process as anything else. Additionally, it would be extremely easy to detect a second @ mention via js and show a tooltip which could lead to the privelege page, thereby adding another channel for induction. – Dom Mar 6 '17 at 21:44

If a 30k user votes to close a question, and another 30k user has already voted to close the question, then the question immediately gets closed.

If a 30k user votes to reopen a question, and another 30k user has already voted to reopen the question, then the question immediately gets reopened.

This will be the policy for all questions that have a score of 0 or less, except those questions that have already had at least 1 close history and at least 1 reopen history.

  • 1
    Maybe also give this to anyone that has a silver tag badge that matches the tags the question was asked with. – Ian Ringrose Jun 17 '15 at 14:39

Edit questions and answers without bumping them to the front page

This one may be more appropriate for Silver Tag Badge holders, but I'm going to throw it on the floor here anyway.


One issue that comes up on some of the SE sites I participate in is that when someone is doing a wave of clean-up edits, all of the questions and answers that they edit count as recent activity and those questions get bumped to the front page, thus drowning out other, more relevant, recent activity.

At 30k it's assumed that you're a well-behaved member of the community. You're not going to go on a destructive rampage. If you're the kind of person who would do that, you would have been caught long before you hit 30k.

This privilege grants you the ability to participate more in site maintenance, by editing questions and answers to recategorize, correct changed terminology, improve formatting, or other cleanup tasks which help improve site content.

This privilege is strictly opt-in - you must explicitly select to not bump an edited question. At 30k you are trusted to make the correct judgement.

In all cases the OP recieves a notification of the edit and may roll back if they feel that the edit materially changes their intent.

  • 5
    I think I would want to find some way to notify moderators, at least. It'd be pretty easy for a rage-quitter to do a lot of damage this way (by picking on users who aren't around much). You wouldn't want one flag per edit if the idea is to do clean-ups, but some sort of notice would be important. Can you think of a way to address this (without flooding mods)? – Monica Cellio Apr 9 '15 at 23:11
  • @MonicaCellio - something like a once per day (it could be once per week, I'm not religious about this) notification then recent activity in your user profile could be reviewed if it's felt necessary? Sound about right? – Maximus Minimus Apr 9 '15 at 23:22
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    Reviewing recent activity works if there's some reason to look. Mods need to be told "hey you might want to look". Maybe a daily flag per user notifying of ninja editing? – Monica Cellio Apr 9 '15 at 23:28
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    @MonicaCellio - a perhaps more palatable alternative is that this class of edit always goes through the same Review Queue process that lower-rep users get, so at least it gets vetted by the community (and the burden of reviewing the edits - and rejecting or flagging them if objectionable - gets more reasonably spread). – Maximus Minimus Apr 9 '15 at 23:28
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    But if the reason you want this is cleanups, isn't that just going to flood the reviewers? – Monica Cellio Apr 9 '15 at 23:30
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    @MonicaCellio - true, but in general terms there are a lot more reviewers than mods so I'm not sure that it would be too onerous. – Maximus Minimus Apr 9 '15 at 23:30
  • I am not quite sure about this idea when it comes to content edits, but it would be a nice thing to have for tag edits. – Wrzlprmft Apr 10 '15 at 8:24
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    No! You're reasoning as if the only purpose of bumping edited posts was for review. But when it comes to tag edits, there's a much more important reason which has nothing to do with the editor. Tag-changing edits must bump the thread in order to reach readers. Otherwise people who subscribe or more generally are interested in one of the added tags, or who ignore one of the removed tags, will miss the question. – Gilles Apr 18 '15 at 20:30
  • @Gilles - no, that's not what I'm reasoning. Tag edits could perfectly well stay as they are. – Maximus Minimus Apr 19 '15 at 1:45
  • @DarthMelkor If I may ask, why did you leave SFF.SE? We miss you! :-) The undisputed king of LotR, with unfailingly great answers - there's been a spate of LotR questions recently too - and already #5 in terms of rep ... – Rand al'Thor May 18 '15 at 9:32
  • @randal'thor - other people will have to give the answer to that one, I'm done with it and have no desire to rake over it again. – Maximus Minimus May 18 '15 at 21:26
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    I would rather see an unbump - if a 3.5k user is fixing typos from 5 years ago, I would like to be able to agree that the rest of us don't all need to see this question on the front page. – Kate Gregory Jun 22 '15 at 15:22

Add an improved timeline.

I'm not a moderator on any site, but I know that moderators get a lot of extra information from a post's timeline that are not available. In particular, I would love to have direct links to review queues related to a particular post, rather than having to manually search in the history. I'm sure there are other tools there as well that I'm not aware of.


@Shog9 said that this is basically a dead feature for regular users here, but this is exactly the sort of information that would be a nice reward and could also help with moderation without feeling like a duty. It's nice to be able to see "oh, this low quality answer wasn't deleted because it was edited out of the queue, but it's still low quality". Or "I see a reopen vote here, but this question is awful, and I want to Leave Closed review it".

Limited ability to see question bans on related SE sites.


The Problem:
Programmers frequently sees low quality questions that would have been asked on SO except that the asker has been question banned from SO.

The Proposal:
Allow 30k users the ability to see if a new poster is blocked on a related technology site where the question should have been asked. To simplify things, this privilege could be limited to migration target sites.

An example: user31415 asks a low-quality question on Programmers that is clearly an implementation issue but needs work in order to meet SO's quality guidelines. I should be able to click through to the user's profile to see if they are question banned on SO or not.

Why? If I know the user is question banned on SO, I can leave a comment helping explain how to get out of being question banned. If the user isn't question banned, then I can explain what needs to be done to improve the question so it can be migrated.

The whole point is to be able to tailor constructive feedback to the new user's actual situation.

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    I think this is too specific to SO/P.SE. – Scimonster Apr 5 '15 at 16:16
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    @Scimonster - As a mod on Engineering, I see similar cross-posting patterns with low quality questions. Physics, EE, and others are common targets for cross-posts or "I was banned on XYZ.SE, so I'll go ask on ABC.SE instead." – GlenH7 Apr 5 '15 at 16:28
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    @Scimonster Code Review would benefit from this as well. – Simon Forsberg Apr 5 '15 at 21:54
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    This seems like a useful moderator privilege. – Zyerah Apr 5 '15 at 22:01
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    @Emrakul it would be helpful for mods, but remember that its often the high rep active users who are the first ones on to a question. Being able to say "this is wrong, and should have been posted on XYZ.SE instead" vs. "I see that you are rate limited / banned on XYZ.SE, and this question really doesn't fit here because its not in our help center / charter." Giving good correct guidance earlier can help prevent users from being pushed from SE to SE in migrations and work to get users to better understand the site they have posted on. – user213963 Apr 5 '15 at 22:18
  • They "Why?" part isn't convincing. The user's reason for asking a question at your site shouldn't be your concern. If the question is acceptable, fine. If it's not, close it. That's all. – user259867 Apr 6 '15 at 14:35
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    @pizza - I appreciate your thoughts, but it is a very real issue for SO / Programmers and with other SE sites. I would prefer to give accurate, constructive feedback to a user instead of seeing them get question banned on two sites instead. There's anecdotal evidence of askers appreciating feedback on how to ask constructive questions and how to fix what they have already tried. Likewise, there's plenty of evidence of bitter users who leave the community after getting banned at 2 sites. A lot of their vitriol could have been prevented with correct, constructive feedback. – GlenH7 Apr 6 '15 at 14:38
  • Should there be a review queue for question from users that have been baned elsewhere? – Ian Ringrose Jun 17 '15 at 14:43

Give 150 rep (instead of 100) on site association

While +50 rep on top of the current 100 site association bonus doesn't seem like much, it ultimately gives 30k users:

  1. The downvote privilege.
    The choice of 150 allows for 25 downvotes on answers (at -1 rep per answer), which is enough for those that may infrequently visit/lurk another site, who can already vote up, flag and comment.
  2. More leeway for bounties.
    With the minimum bounty being 50 reputation, users can place 1 bounty on an associated site without re-entering new-user privilege restriction territory (< 100).

In terms of how much a 30k user would 'know a site' before accessing more dangerous privileges: a base association of 150 is also still 100 rep away from viewing close votes on their own question, and 350 from accessing review queues - which is still a large amount of reputation to earn on a site to access those privileges, especially with no large 'bank' of questions/answers bringing in regular rep (as would be the case on their 30k site).

Give 30k users the ability to see Not An Answer flags, perhaps in a review queue. They already have the ability to delete answers at 20k, now let's give them the ability to quickly and easily see which answers they can spend these votes on. Ultimately, it could be possible for 30k users to completely handle Not An Answer flags, which should help the mod queue somewhat.

  • What about spam flags? – Patrick Hofman Jul 7 '15 at 22:34
  • @PatrickHofman Spam flags are already handled automatically by the community. No moderator involvement. – durron597 Jul 7 '15 at 22:42
  • How are spam flags handled by community then? – Patrick Hofman Jul 8 '15 at 5:53
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    The vast majority of NAA-flagged answers is sent to the VLQ queue anyway, so this mostly already exists. – Wrzlprmft Jul 8 '15 at 10:41

My proposal is for MSE only, but maybe can be expanded later somehow to other sites.

MSE tends to get lots of programming questions, from people unaware of what this site is about, landing here in mysterious ways and thinking this is Stack Overflow.

I'd say it's at least 20 questions every day. Not much, but enough to make noise.

I would like that users with 30k reputation will have binding close vote under those conditions:

  1. Close reason only off-topic ⇒ "This question does not appear to be about the software that powers the Stack Exchange network".
  2. Question has 0 or negative score.
  3. OP (user who posted the question) does not have any reputation on the site, i.e. 1 reputation or 101 with association bonus. (Yes, this is not rare to see as well.)

If all of those are true, the close vote will be binding, and the question will be insta-closed.

Just for fun, recent example of what I'm talking about:

  • 1
  • Surely this could apply as written to any meta e.g. MSO as well as MSE. – Robert Longson Feb 22 '16 at 12:50
  • @RobertLongson On normal metas (like MSO), the 5 rep requirement to post takes care of most crap questions. – yannis Feb 22 '16 at 13:00
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    We could certainly use this (or something like this) @gnat. – yannis Feb 22 '16 at 13:00
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    @Robert also, in per site meta it's very rare to have such off topic questions as far as I can tell, I guess that not even one in a day. – Shadow the Welcoming Wizard Feb 22 '16 at 13:04
  • How would you limit it to a particular custom close reason, though? That's the sticky part. – Nathan Tuggy Feb 22 '16 at 18:41
  • @Nathan leaving this up to the team... believe they can find a way. (It's not a custom reason, it's pre-defined in the system) – Shadow the Welcoming Wizard Feb 22 '16 at 18:43

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