It's New Year's Day in [Stack Exchange land](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zulu_Time)...

A distinguishing characteristic of these sites is how they are moderated:

We designed the Stack Exchange network engine to be mostly self-regulating, in that we amortize the overall moderation cost of the system across thousands of teeny-tiny slices of effort contributed by regular, everyday users.
-- A Theory of Moderation

While there certainly are Moderators here, a significant amount of the moderation is done by ordinary people, using the privileges they've earned by virtue of their contributions to the site. Each of you contributes a little bit of time and effort, and together you accomplish much.

As we enter a new year, let's pause and reflect, taking a moment to appreciate the work that we do here together. And what could be more festive than a big pile of numbers? So here is a breakdown of moderation actions performed on Meta Stack Exchange over the past 12 months:

                  Action                  Moderators Community¹
----------------------------------------- ---------- ----------
Users suspended²                                 145        177
Users destroyed³                               1,043          0
Users deleted                                      9          0
Users contacted                                  217          0
User suspensions lifted early                      5          0
Tasks reviewed⁴: Suggested Edit queue            115      3,619
Tasks reviewed⁴: Reopen Vote queue                17      2,921
Tasks reviewed⁴: Low Quality Posts queue          46      2,441
Tasks reviewed⁴: Close Votes queue                52      9,708
Tags merged                                       13          0
Tag synonyms proposed                              9          2
Tag synonyms created                               9          5
Tag highlight language set                         1          0
Revisions redacted                                21          0
Questions unprotected                             59         80
Questions reopened                                76        262
Questions protected                                2        227
Questions migrated                                83          0
Questions flagged⁵                               238     18,722
Questions closed                               2,236      4,327
Question flags handled⁵                        3,452     15,495
Posts unlocked                                    13         37
Posts undeleted                                   71        270
Posts locked                                      46      1,766
Posts deleted⁶                                 3,302      6,761
Posts bumped                                       0        117
Escalations to the Community Manager team          4          0
Comments undeleted                               254          0
Comments flagged                                 209     10,026
Comments deleted⁷                             17,479     10,353
Comment flags handled                          7,207      3,022
Bounties canceled                                  7          0
Answers flagged                                  179      4,846
Answer flags handled                           2,616      2,397
All comments on a post moved to chat              29          0


¹ "Community" here refers both to the membership of Meta Stack Exchange without diamonds next to their names, and to the automated systems otherwise known as user #-1.

² The system will suspend users under three circumstances: when a user is recreated after being previously suspended, when a user is recreated after being destroyed for spam or abuse, and when a network-wide suspension is in effect on an account.

³ A "destroyed" user is deleted along with all that they had posted: questions, answers, comments. Generally used as an expedient way of getting rid of spam.

⁴ This counts every review that was submitted (not skipped) - so the 2 suggested edits reviews needed to approve an edit would count as 2, the goal being to indicate the frequency of moderation actions. This also applies to flags, etc.

⁵ Includes close flags (but not close or reopen votes).

⁶ This ignores numerous deletions that happen automatically in response to some other action.

⁷ This includes comments deleted by their own authors (which also account for some number of handled comment flags).

Further reading:

Wishing you all a happy new year...

  • Since there was a change in functionality in the comment lock, can counts for that be listed separately please? Jan 1, 2020 at 2:07
  • 1
    @SonictheAnonymousHedgehog Well, I've used it twice
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Jan 1, 2020 at 2:08
  • 7
    Many of these actions could be broken out into much, much more detail, @Sonic. That would make reading these reports rather tedious however. Given we've had... a few weeks? Of availability for the new lock reason... I suspect it's not very interesting right now. If you want to request usage stats in a month or two, that's fine.
    – Shog9
    Jan 1, 2020 at 2:46
  • 3
    Perhaps make it clearer it is only about this site? It is approx. in the fifth paragraph. Until then it can be read as if it is about all of Stack Exchange. Jan 1, 2020 at 2:57
  • 1
    @PeterMortensen The meta tag should make it clear. Jan 1, 2020 at 2:58
  • 11
    Can you please also break this down into quarters? I feel that would be of particular interest this year. Jan 1, 2020 at 3:09
  • 4
    Data are most interesting when they are compared with other data. Would you mind giving us the same sort of table, but for 2018, to allow a comparison? And I second the request for a breakdown by quarters -- or months, if you prefer. I appreciate that you want to give us the big picture -- but if you give us two big lists, or 8 lists, then we can have some fun putting them into a spreadsheet. Jan 1, 2020 at 3:09
  • 4
    There weren't really "moderators" here separate from employees in most of 2018, so I didn't bother running this here last year, @aparente
    – Shog9
    Jan 1, 2020 at 4:36
  • 5
    Thank you very much for this input. Do you think it would be possible to split this down to quarters, so that it answers my question meta.stackexchange.com/questions/341268/…?
    – GhostCat
    Jan 1, 2020 at 7:29
  • 21
    Further data request: before/after The Firing of Monica Jan 1, 2020 at 8:11
  • 2
    @JourneymanGeek If they are automatically generated, it would not make sense that the OP receives reputation for the upvotes.
    – user569408
    Jan 1, 2020 at 10:09
  • 2
    Well, it wouldn't matter on any other meta - and I don't think this side had stats last year since the mods were just minted.
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Jan 1, 2020 at 10:41
  • 1
    @Shog9 - Could you tell us more about the seasonal flux? I'm especially interested in suspensions. Also, could you tell us how the suspension patterns look to you? And while am at it, may I ask why I should not be bitter about not being able to get a response when I send a message to the Community Management team with "Contact Us"? Is it really just a problem with CMs being overworked? If so -- is there anything we mere mortals can do to help you guys help us? Jan 2, 2020 at 5:23
  • 1
    That's a lot to answer in a comment, @aparente ... Suspension patterns are similar but not identical to 2013; they are indicative of an increase in activity coupled with frustration; I should not venture to tell you how to be; it is that and many other things; be good to each other.
    – Shog9
    Jan 2, 2020 at 6:01
  • 5
    Interesting stats, but it would be more interesting to get stats of the moderation of the past 2 months in comparison to moderation before that. Please make sure you normalize for seasonal variation, user reputation etc. My goal is to see to what degree has moderation changed. E.g. how many non-low-rep users banned for 7 days without a warning?
    – user
    Jan 2, 2020 at 11:17


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