Currently, when user cannot review questions because of insufficient reputation, the review queues icon is not displayed. This is fine. But when a user cannot review questions because they are banned, the icon is still displayed. I find such behaviour inconsistent and thus, a bug. When user cannot review questions, no matter what is the reason, the icon for review queues should not be displayed.

If you consider this as not a bug, but rather as a feature request, feel free to change the tag.

Alternatively, the appearance of this icon should changed, so that user can clearly understand that review queues are not available to him. And there should be nor red colour. The icon should draw less attention, not more. The explanation about the ban reason can be sent to the inbox, so that user can easily find it at any time later on.

There are other questions regarding review queues, but this is not a duplicate of them:

  • @Spevacus: I don't know what was the intention. If it was not an intention to display the icon, then this is a bug to display it. If it was an intention to display it, then my suggestion to remove it is a feature request :)
    – mentallurg
    Apr 6, 2020 at 23:25

3 Answers 3


Marking this as as we ended up doing this differently in the new functionality just released changing the way that notifications work for review suspensions - we are still showing the review icon in the top-bar, but when you click on it, you will get a notification about the suspension (linking to /review which will give even more info). We are showing the red dot exactly once, and once you click on it, you should not see it again for the duration of the review suspension (we are considering changing the way this operates - something different instead of the red dot, perhaps, for those with a review suspension).


I think this will make it more confusing for users who are review banned. Users are not notified of review bans from moderators, so if they're banned by a moderator, the only way they'll get to know that they were banned is if they suddenly found the absence of the button.

At this point, it's likely that users won't understand what is going on and why the button isn't showing for them. Cue questions from users, "where did the review button go?".

Also, on the actual review page, it will show the reason why they are banned. Your proposal would involve completely removing this link, which would mean users won't ever be able to see the reason unless they know what URL to go to.

I agree that the current UI is confusing. I don't like the fact that, as you mentioned, users are still notified of review tasks to complete, and I also don't like that clicking the dropdown doesn't indicate the existence of a ban. But I disagree with your proposed way of fixing this problem. I think a better way would be to keep the button, but indicate in the dropdown if you are banned and a clear link to see the reason. (And fix that notification issue.)

  • Users are not notified of review bans from moderators - easy. Send a message automatically, like when you flag a question as duplicate. But displaying an icon permanently provides the wrong impression that one can review, where as actually he cannot.
    – mentallurg
    Apr 6, 2020 at 23:38
  • This your answer contradicts to your answer to the same proposal in another thread: meta.stackexchange.com/a/351161/324858. Can you explain that?
    – mentallurg
    Jul 24, 2020 at 22:43
  • The thing I'm proposing to remove in that answer is the red dot, not the overall icon itself. Jul 24, 2020 at 23:02

At the moment it's pretty hard to determine why you're banned as clicking on the review icon simply results in a message that says there's nothing to review. So yes the existing implementation is less than ideal.

Removing the icon however will mean that discovering you are banned is even harder. We'll just get meta questions asking why the icon has disappeared. Instead banned users clicking on the icon should be told explicitly that they are banned and more importantly why they are banned.

We could change the icon to have an additional red circle with an oblique line through it when you're banned like this perhaps, as long as that is combined with an improved message when you click on it.

Many additional ban feedback mechanisms are possible and desirable. Some have been suggested here e.g. send a message to the user's global inbox.

  • I am not sure you know how it really works. When you click on it, it does not display the ban reason. Also it does not have a link top the review queues page. Actually, the only way to know the reason is to manually enter URL of the .../reviews page. Only there the ban reason is displayed. So, the icon does not do what you think.
    – mentallurg
    Apr 6, 2020 at 23:42
  • correct, that's why I'm suggesting that is what should happen when you click on the icon rather than your suggestion of hiding the review icon altogether. Apr 6, 2020 at 23:43
  • OK, displaying a reason would be OK. Nevertheless, if icon is not hidden, it should at least look differently, so that user from the 1st glance can determine that he cannot review questions.
    – mentallurg
    Apr 6, 2020 at 23:44
  • Sure, I've edited my answer to suggest one way of doing that. Apr 6, 2020 at 23:49
  • I'd suggest there should be no red color. Red draws attention. Where as in this case the icon should be actually less visible than the aothers.
    – mentallurg
    Apr 6, 2020 at 23:49
  • No, we want people to click on it and find out why they are banned. That way when the ban expires they will know they did wrong and what to do differently so as not to get banned again. Apr 6, 2020 at 23:51
  • When user wants to find out why he is banned, he will find the icon even if it is less visible. But if the red color is displayed 30 days or longer, this would be just irritating. May be red color is OK for the first couple of days after banning. But not the whole time.
    – mentallurg
    Apr 6, 2020 at 23:53
  • Why not sending a message to the inbox explaining the ban reason? Then 1) Icon will be not necessary. 2) The message remains in the inbox and user can read if later on again if he forgotten the reason.
    – mentallurg
    Apr 6, 2020 at 23:55
  • Don't get banned for 30 days then. Normally bans double in duration so to get to 30 you would have been banned for 15 days and ignored it and prior to that 7 days and ignored it etc. As you can read in my answer I think sending a message to the inbox as well is a good idea too. Apr 6, 2020 at 23:56
  • Hmm... I have now more than 30 days. I can create a rule in the ad-blocker or user other extensions like Stylus to remove the icon. But better would be if SE provides better UX.
    – mentallurg
    Apr 6, 2020 at 23:58

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