A moderator on a Stack Exchange site can record themselves as absent or inactive. Currently the status changes independently for each main site and the corresponding Meta.

I, myself, had taken a vacation twice on the main site, but never noticed that my status on Meta didn't change. In my opinion it's not quite possible that a moderator takes a vacation from moderating the main site but stays active on Meta. So the status should change for both main site and its Meta at once.

  • 2
    Context from the May 2016 Moderator Newsletter: "It’s now possible for moderators to signal their intention to go on vacation via the moderator history page. There will be a simple text field with a button labelled “Record myself as absent / inactive”." – Guest Jun 2 '16 at 8:41

I agree: moderator vacation status on meta should inherit from the status on main. So I'm adding that to my moderator vacation feature request list.

The moderator vacation feature is still in the minimum viable product stage. Currently it serves three purposes:

  1. Clearly remove a vacationing moderators flag-handling statistics from the rest of the team,

  2. Provide details about an absence to other site moderators and the community team, and

  3. Gather statistics so that we have some idea about how the feature is being used and what sort of patterns there might be when it comes to moderator time off.

I started thinking about the feature when I proposed a moderator emeritus status. This isn't exactly the same idea, but I think it addresses some of the root problems. Currently, there are 17 moderators across the network who have marked themselves inactive. That's a good sign that the feature is useful even in a minimal form. (It's also a sign of summer in the Northern Hemisphere.) Steps we can take to prevent moderator burnout will be positive for communities as a whole.

  • I don't think notifications are working. In a recent event a moderator attempted to communicate a message as part of his vacation notice, and it was not notice by anyone, both sites he moderates and the SE staff should have become aware, but the message was missed. – James Jenkins Apr 15 '17 at 8:51

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