While some gold badges are cumulable without huge effort, like Famous Question (10,000 views) or Great Answer (score of 100), it seems that the time spent in reviewing cannot be rewarded anymore past 1,000 review tasks, as the Steward badge can only be awarded once (per queue).

I propose that reviewing way above the current Steward threshold should still award something. This could maybe or maybe not help to pop the Close queue, but at least it would be nice to recognize the work of super active reviewers.

Possible rewards ideas (open to discussion):

  • a silver Steward every 1,000 review tasks above 1,000. Maybe a different name?
  • a gold Steward every 1,000 * 2^n review tasks for n in 0 … ∞.

3 Answers 3


As your question is actually a byproduct of my question on SO.meta, and I am the one who proposed that idea there, my thoughts:

  • Basically, the issue at hand was: there are regularly many thousands of entries on the "close" queue on SO. Simply so many, that most of them don't see "proper" voting.
  • Now: if one considers this a problem, then it is fair to ask for changes to the system to improve that situation. We can't reduce the number of questions entering that queue (and for sure: SE.com would utterly reject the idea of being more conservative/restrictive and preventing people from hitting the submit button for new questions). So, we have to increase the number of people willing to vote.
  • My very own perspective: yes, I did all 8 review queues, mainly for the badges. But: my motivation is to A) get to that gold badge and B) contribute at the same time. So for me, there is no difference where I vote; I apply the same amount of diligence each time.
  • Sure, "unlimited" gold badges will also attract "robo voters". Well, if robo voters are such a big problem, then drop the badges for voting altogether. It is plain simple: a true robo voter will always be that, so his first 1000 votes would be as bad as any subsequent 1000 votes. Beyond that, you can also fine tune the sanction system: when somebody is caught voting wrong repeatedly, multiply the penalty time with the number of gold badges for example. So, when you have 5000 reviews, and you still mess up all the time, then just ban that person for 5 months from voting. That will motivate even robo voters to pay a bit of attention.

Further thinking about it, there are other variations that would create motivation for me:

  • some new badge, call it the iron badge for example. Obviously something different than gold, but still, telling the initiated about the hard work behind it
  • allow for more votes to be done (also not a new idea)

It's not a bad idea per sé, but wouldn't that just encourage more robo-reviewing?

For very active reviewers, we already have a leaderboard on the stats page.

Also, note that review queues already encourage obtaining three other badges: Civic Duty, Copy Editor and Electorate:

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  • These badges can only be earned once. So proposal is to always have a possibility for an extra reward, especially if you spend hundred of hours on it.
    – Cœur
    Nov 9, 2018 at 9:46
  • I know, since this is a discussion I'm proposing some alternatives to consider :)
    – Glorfindel Mod
    Nov 9, 2018 at 9:48
  • Wouldn't we catch the robo-reviewers somewhere in the first 2,000 review tasks? Isn't there a possibility that, if the change can attract robo-reviewers, it can just as well attract as many good-reviewers post-1,000 reviews?
    – Cœur
    Nov 9, 2018 at 9:52
  • @Cœur The difference is: robo-reviewers are in it for the badges, where-as good reviewers are also / more / exclusively in it to help. You may attract some good reviewers, but it should be primarily robo-reviewers. Nov 9, 2018 at 10:49
  • @Cœur I'd be curious whether robo-reviewers get past audits. Audits aren't that great overall, but they might be good enough for people who are literally just trying to get through as fast as possible. Nov 9, 2018 at 10:51
  • It is pretty simple: the really click click click robo reviewers go from one suspension to the next, with increasing penalties. And I am sure you can find tons and tons of questions here and so meta discussing all aspects of this topic.
    – GhostCat
    Nov 10, 2018 at 11:52
  • This argument boils down to: "We can't have nice things because it will attract thieves." While sometimes tactically true, it's not a successful strategy overall. And it's never rewarding. Nov 10, 2018 at 20:54

My guess would be that people who roam those review queues aren't in it for the badges, but that they get a nice feeling of helping out.

And vice versa, you aren't going to entice me to grind those queues for a shiny badge.

I vote and flag from the frontpage, where the chance of encountering an answerable question is like 1 in 10, while in those queues it's 1 in 100. You're not very likely to encounter something positive in review.

  • 2
    You're not very likely to encounter something positive in review. on Stack Overflow, maybe. On other sites, it's much better in my experience.
    – Glorfindel Mod
    Nov 9, 2018 at 9:45
  • Good point, this is meta.SE after all, I don't visit (m)any queues outside SO.
    – CodeCaster
    Nov 9, 2018 at 9:47
  • 2
    Same thing for the other badges: most people don't post Q&A on Stack Exchange for the sole purpose of the Silver/Gold badges. I mean the proposal as a virtual reward.
    – Cœur
    Nov 9, 2018 at 9:54
  • 2
    For me, it is both. I want to help, but I would be less motivated without the steward badges in the end.
    – GhostCat
    Nov 9, 2018 at 10:06

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