The blurb at the top of the nomination tab on each election page (example) now says:

In the nomination phase, any community member in good standing with more than 300 reputation (and 18 or up) may nominate themselves to be a community moderator.

The text "and 18 or up" does link to the official policy that moderators must be at least 18 years of old, so the meaning is clear after clicking through. But in context, without clicking the link, it's a bit confusingly worded. The last number mentioned was a reputation score, and now another number is mentioned without saying explicitly what it's a number of.

Might I suggest a rewording? Perhaps "and at least 18 years of age" or "and 18 years or above" or "and 18 years old or more". At least something to make it explicitly clear that this is about age, and years, rather than anything else (reputation, badges, ...) Even if it seems obvious to you, remember that not all moderator candidates are native English speakers.

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    (Yes, I know the example I linked has a different reputation figure. I decided to link an election from the best-known site but quote the figure that's most commonly used on the network.) Aug 9, 2022 at 8:00
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    Or "and 18 or older" - or is that too literally translated from Dutch?
    – Glorfindel Mod
    Aug 9, 2022 at 8:00
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    @Glorfindel "Must be [x] or older" is typical phrasing here in the US. Aug 9, 2022 at 8:02
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    “… any community member in good standing with more than 300 reputation who is 18 years old or over may nominate…” Or better yet, make it a bullet list of requirements so that EFL folks don’t have to try to parse a long sentence. I don’t think this one is particularly difficult though.
    – ColleenV
    Aug 9, 2022 at 11:04
  • There is also in large font another age requirement indicator at the bottom of the page right next to the link where you would nominate yourself: i.stack.imgur.com/QTH7j.png
    – Timothy G.
    Aug 9, 2022 at 13:27
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    @TimothyG. I know; this question is just about the sentence near the top of the page. Aug 9, 2022 at 13:34

2 Answers 2


Rather than just rewording the problematic phrase, it would be better to reword the whole sentence. Normally, text in brackets should be a minor or obvious addition to the preceding text, or at least something closely related to the preceding text. (Or it could be something completely unimportant to the main point, like this sentence.) But an age requirement has nothing to do with reputation or being in good standing (though the latter two things are closely related to each other). Nor is it obvious: to give an example off the top of my head, the Wikimedia Foundation’s Volunteer Response Team has a minimum age of 16.

We could say something like:

In the nomination phase, any community member who is in good standing, has a reputation of more than 300, and is at least 18 years of age, may nominate themselves to be a community moderator.

We could even emphasise the importance of the minimum age by saying:

In the nomination phase, any community member aged 18 or over, who is in good standing with more than 300 reputation, may nominate themselves to be a community moderator.

Note that age is the only thing that neither side can do anything about (users can change their standing and reputation through their behaviour, and Stack Exchange can change the way they assess these issues, but no one can change a person’s age or the contract law that underlies this age requirement).

Also note that I linked to the answer instead of the question, as it is the answer that actually states the age requirement.

(As an aside, the reputation condition says “more than” instead of “at least”. Is this accurate?)

  • I think the first suggestion flows a lot better. Aug 9, 2022 at 8:54
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    For the second suggestion, "any community member aged 18 or above" would be better.
    – Justin
    Aug 9, 2022 at 8:56
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    @Justin “Aged 18 or over” sounds better to me. Aug 9, 2022 at 8:58
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    @Justin A few alternate suggestions are that, rather than "above", to instead use the current "up", "more", or "older" as suggested in Glorfindel's comment and Sonic's comment, with my preference being Glorfindel's and Sonic's "older" suggestion. Aug 9, 2022 at 8:58
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    @JohnOmielan, Brian: Looking at the results on Google, “aged 18 or over” seems to be the most popular phrasing, followed by "aged 18 or older", then "aged 18 or above", then "aged 18 or more", then "aged 18 or up" (just FYI).
    – Justin
    Aug 9, 2022 at 9:06

One way to increase comprehension is to use simpler sentences. Instead of one long, convoluted sentence with multiple points, we can separate the criteria into at least two sentences.

In the nomination phase, any qualifying community member may nominate themselves to be a community moderator. To qualify, a community member must have more than 300 reputation, be 18 years of age or above, and be in good standing as defined by our policies [link].

This structure also gives us plenty of room to clarify or extend the qualification criteria with additional sentences without needing to extend the main idea sentence. For example, we could add,

Residents of Ruritania who have had their civil rights suspended under the Ruritanian Responsible Use of the Internet Act must complete an accredited 10-hour Responsible Netuser Behavior Course and submit a copy of their transcript to the following address [link] before submitting their nomination. An official list of accredited course providers can be found here: [link].

To comply with the Guilder Beat Spammers With Their Own Crap Act 2023, users who are citizens or permanent residents of Guilder who have been convicted of a felony are ineligible to nominate, serve, or continue to serve as a moderator until two years have passed since the completion of any imposed sentence for such felony, including periods of parole, conditional release, or other formal supervision. Any user who has evidence that a current moderator or moderator candidate meets this disqualification criteria may submit appropriate evidence to [email protected] for investigation.

By submitting a nomination, citizens of Florin declare under penalty of perjury that they are current on all child support payments or have entered into a formal child support arrears payment plan with the court that does not include a disqualification from Internet use.

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