Given that not all employees have a diamond:

All Stack Overflow employees aren't given a moderator diamond; the Community team has tightened up internal policies regarding who gets one and who doesn't. [...] — Anita Taylor


can we have some visual indication that they are an employee?

This was previous requested back in 2011, but declined. However, the situation appears to have changed now with fewer employees being given a diamond.

That way when they post on a meta site we know that it's somewhat "official".

Failing that please ensure that everyone includes the fact they're an employee in their profile given that this request to add employee to their profile pages was also declined.

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    It's worth noting that, while many of the SO staff have their employee info in their profiles, not all of them do, so it can sometimes lead to confusion when a very official-sounding answer comes from an account with no indication of affiliation to the Network. This doesn't apply in Anita's case, but I've definitely seen it in the past.
    – Catija
    Commented May 23, 2018 at 23:07
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    This will also make it clearer to less-knowing users that a migration that was done after 60 days by a "moderator" was actually done by an employee. Commented May 23, 2018 at 23:18
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    Very related: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/299167/…
    – Shog9
    Commented May 23, 2018 at 23:48
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    @Shog9 I don't know if you saw my FR for Teams. I thought that, if it were added to Teams, it could be made more broadly applicable on the network to fill this need, particularly the Admin-created/awarded version... possibly even used for mods, too.
    – Catija
    Commented May 23, 2018 at 23:53
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    I did; I think it's a good idea.
    – Shog9
    Commented May 24, 2018 at 0:03
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    @MEE I linked to that question in my question (last sentence).
    – ChrisF Mod
    Commented May 24, 2018 at 16:09
  • @ChrisF oh, I didn't read this. But I think the answer would be the same. Commented May 24, 2018 at 16:10
  • In what scenario would an employee who isn't a moderator make changes to someone's question? I'm afraid that the door will swing the other way and there will be too much implicit trust in a user simply because they are an employee. If an employee does something "official" this official-ness should be clear from the context (like the post itself has some marker that it is official) not by the user's name/icon. I don't want to feel stifled by someone just because they have a badge. A high reputation is plenty enough to intimidate me, and is earned.
    – Anthony
    Commented May 24, 2018 at 18:07
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    @Anthony I'm not talking about them making changes to questions. I'm talking about knowing at a glance that a question or answer is posted by an employee. Their privileges would still come from their reputation, not from the special symbol.
    – ChrisF Mod
    Commented May 24, 2018 at 18:58
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    Right, but why is their employee status relevant in a question/answer context? People will assume they have more authority (re: the question/answer is above reproach) if they have some kind of "official employee badge". The only authority in a normal context should be reputation. If the employee is doing something with elevated authority (removing something or making an official announcement, or whatever) then that action should reflect the official-ness, not their username icon. If they are acting as a normal user, then they should not get some special treatment as an employee.
    – Anthony
    Commented May 24, 2018 at 19:17
  • This is the whole "honest cop accepting a friendly free apple" scenario. Everyone says it's harmless and won't lead to corruption, but it is impossible to avoid people behaving differently when someone is wearing a badge. And I ask again: what value is there in all users being able to quickly identify an SO employee, even in situations where that status shouldn't matter?
    – Anthony
    Commented May 24, 2018 at 19:24
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    'That way when they post on a meta site we know that it's somewhat "official".' does this mean employee's speaking on meta sites will always be speaking on behalf of SO? That it will always carry some "somewhat official" status? Why not limit this feature request to employee usernames as they appear on meta sites? Or give employees access to a "this is official" check box that would appear differently? Or have employees, when speaking from a somewhat official stance, say "as an SO employee…"? All you seem to be requesting is a way to always stand out, which does more harm than good.
    – Anthony
    Commented May 24, 2018 at 23:56
  • Related (completed) feature request: Add an immediately visible indication that a user is a staff member or an employee of SE - The diamond now has a "Mod" text explanation next to it, and there's a visible orange "Staff" badge next to the staff member's username everywhere as well. (EDIT: Correction: Apparently the above display changes are only applied on Meta sites, at the moment, not the main sites - New Staff and Mod Labels on site metas and Meta Stack Exchange)
    – V2Blast
    Commented Jul 29, 2021 at 6:58

3 Answers 3


This request is (at least partially) addressed by the new employee indicator in user profiles.

It looks like this:

Brian Nickel's profile image showing both the orange "staff" and blue "moderator" labels

For reference, it used to look like this:

Brian Nickel's profile image before the update, showing "(moderator) but not "staff".

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    It doesn't fully answer this request (as I was hoping for something that got displayed where ever the name was displayed, like the diamond) but I accept it's the closest I'm going to get.
    – ChrisF Mod
    Commented Aug 1, 2019 at 10:41
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    @ChrisF T problem with doing something like what you're asking is that it kinda draws attention where it's not necessary. We love when our staff use the sites for fun. It seems unnecessary to put an indicator on every post and comment they make... can kinda feel like you're in a fishbowl. It doesn't really make sense to do this everywhere and might actually reduce their participation or push them to socks. This solution is hidden enough that it shouldn't have a similar impact.
    – Catija
    Commented Aug 1, 2019 at 13:06
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    @Catija I understand that, which is why I'm happy with this solution.
    – ChrisF Mod
    Commented Aug 1, 2019 at 13:07

This is a great idea, and my userscript Stack Overflow Extras (SOX) has this feature (you need to enable it in the settings dialog added to the topbar). Instead of squares/triangles/hearts, we add a small Stack Overflow logo after the diamond. For example:

enter image description here

We use Font Awesome to get the logo, so the main disadvantage of this is that it would require an additional logo image to be loaded when it's needed, whereas using a different standard shape could just be a unicode character saving (a tiny bit?) of bandwidth.

Alternatively, it could be an SVG image created on the page itself? (I think this is what is currently used for the topbar inbox/achievements icons.) From the company page, it would be:

<svg xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2000/svg" viewBox="0 0 120 120"><style>.st0{fill:#bcbbbb}.st1{fill:#f48023}</style><path class="st0" d="M84.4 93.8V70.6h7.7v30.9H22.6V70.6h7.7v23.2z"/><path class="st1" d="M38.8 68.4l37.8 7.9 1.6-7.6-37.8-7.9-1.6 7.6zm5-18l35 16.3 3.2-7-35-16.4-3.2 7.1zm9.7-17.2l29.7 24.7 4.9-5.9-29.7-24.7-4.9 5.9zm19.2-18.3l-6.2 4.6 23 31 6.2-4.6-23-31zM38 86h38.6v-7.7H38V86z"/></svg>

However I think the biggest advantage of there being a logo is that it doesn't give the idea of the employees running above us, because it just shows they are related to the company!


To be honest I find it somewhat sinister the way that SE seems intent on obfuscating the employee status of users.

And I have to say I strongly believe that transparency is needed on Meta at the very least - MSE is by it's very nature about the SE "product" and has in it's "Help" section the following text:

Post good, relevant answers, and if some (but not all) happen to be about your product or website, that’s okay. However, you must disclose your affiliation in your answers.

And quite rightly so - there's nothing inherently wrong about putting your 2 cents worth in about something where you have an interest, in fact that "insider knowledge" can be extremely valuable. Hiding it though? That's ethically dubious in my book.

I imagine many people would find it distasteful if a retailer were to have it's employees wandering around their store "incognito" discussing the relative merits of the different products with shoppers. How is this any different?

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    I don't think there is intent to hide or obfuscate. SE employees reveal their affiliation in their about me and if needed in their answer. It only becomes weird when non-moderators are adding status-tags to questions. On top of that, the question asks: can we have an employee indicator? Your answer doesn't address that or it must be to express the distasteful practice. Upvoting the question would serve as support for the FR as well.
    – rene
    Commented Oct 23, 2018 at 17:52
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    @rene: Intentional or otherwise, though, the system leaves employees with no meaningful way to actually achieve disclosing this information, because stating it in your own profile is so unverifiable as to be meaningless (and really best ignored!) There is a very good reason that staff in shops all wear name badges so that you actually know they work there other than just taking their word for it, and it definitely seems strange that SE doesn't do this. I would be happy with it just being on Metas though; on the main sites they don't really have their employee hats on and are just customers! Commented Dec 21, 2018 at 11:41
  • @LightnessRacesinOrbit yeah, don't disagree with that. It sometimes feels like you ended up at Best Buy ...
    – rene
    Commented Dec 21, 2018 at 12:04
  • @rene Haha genius Commented Dec 21, 2018 at 12:22

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