This is a bit of a follow up to the 'answer' here.

From the time editing was first introduced, it's a system that both has been refined, and occasionally has scaled poorly. In general, the mechanics of the network ought to reward good behaviour on its own merits, either tangibly or intangibly.

Our gold badge dupe close system is an example of reputation being separated from a privilege.

The suggested edit system is meant to be 'training wheels' for editing. You make a major edit, someone reviews it and ensures it's up to scratch and approves it. It's a great system since it lets people learn the ropes while avoiding the risk of major vandalism or over-enthusiasm.

On the other hand, it's possible to get what needs editing, and how to do it before you hit 2000 reputation, or to hit 2k reputation and not really have had much editing experience. The exact numbers are up for tweaking of course but here's what I'm roughly suggesting.

Assuming the user has a clean record - and hasn't been suspended from suggesting edits:

  • Allow a user to do major edits at 250 successful edits even if the 2k editing ability is not unlocked. We'd still keep a 6 char minimum here to prevent minor/trivial edits. Allowing those as under 6 char edits is something to be considered

  • Allow a user full edit rights at 500 successful edits.

I'd tier this based on site size as we already do with 'small' graduated site reputation levels, though I'd say SO might need its own threshold and tweaking.

If a little complication is alright, I'd say a 75% success rate in edits would be a nice thing to have. Alternatively, a high rate of failed edits, or a string of failed ones should also raise an auto-flag for review.

I'd appreciate feedback, and people pointing out any obviously unshielded thermal exhaust ports.

  • 5
    Do you have data on how many users have that many approved edits? On the site where I thought I had tons of suggested edits (over 5 years of work!) I only had 100 or so. I also have no idea what you mean by "major edit".
    – Laurel
    Commented Mar 10, 2023 at 23:59
  • You can't really do a suggested edit that's under... 6 characters? That's a minor edit. The thresholds are pulled out of my undercaffeinated brain and probably could be fleshed out better. And no, I don't really have any data >_> Commented Mar 11, 2023 at 0:08
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    Practically speaking- thinking of it,the thresholds could/should vary by site size Commented Mar 11, 2023 at 0:12
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    I guess I did understand what you meant by "major edit" but not why. If we're talking about training wheels, it feels like you're taking them off the 18-wheeler before the bicycle. What problem does this limit solve? Is it just to prevent the front page from flooding with quickie edits? I would support lowering the limits on suggested edits, but it just feels like the details aren't there yet.
    – Laurel
    Commented Mar 11, 2023 at 0:29
  • @Laurel I contributed 280 approved suggested edits over one year as an anonymous user. I also contributed 200 approved edits after registering, of which most were within a few months since it didn't take me long to earn the reputation required to make binding edits. Commented Mar 11, 2023 at 0:38
  • That said, as I mention there, one of the reasons I edited anonymously was explicitly so that my edits could get reviewed for accuracy by others. In many cases, even if I made tons of approved edits, I'd still want my edits reviewed and wouldn't want them to be all of a sudden binding. Users should be able to opt to have their edits reviewed even if they gain these privileges. (Even today a similar thing applies to my watch/blacklist requests in Charcoal - I've made quite a few approved PRs, enough for me to be granted binding privileges to do so if I request, but I explicitly didn't.) Commented Mar 11, 2023 at 0:40
  • @Laurel It lets people who've demonstrated an ability to edit constructively, well, edit constructively without being shackled by anything else. And yeah, the mininum is meant to prevent people from flooding the page with small/trivial edits. Commented Mar 11, 2023 at 0:43
  • scaled poorly is sort of understatement I think. In 2022 Stack Overflow made 6x less suggested edits reviews than in 2016. "6x" means six times less, it's not a typo
    – gnat
    Commented Mar 11, 2023 at 19:03
  • That there's less reviews is a different problem and unless people get out of suggested edit training wheels mode, this wouldn't help. We'd need to understand the motivations/demotivations for doing edit reviews. Commented Mar 16, 2023 at 1:35

3 Answers 3


I'm OK with this in spirit.

It splits the editor pool into two - those who earn it through their activity, and those who are rewarded it after hitting 2K reputation.

I don't see this as a bad thing, since someone who's consistently good at doing edits should be rewarded with more privilege to do them.


As Laurel mentioned in the comments, 250 is a long "engine warmup time". On Stack Overflow, it can take long periods of time for a suggested edit to finished getting reviewed (even over a week. see John M. Wright's 2022 Community-A-Thon report and Aaron Bertrand's), and you can only have 5 in the queue at a time.

Quoting Makoto: "someone who's consistently good at doing edits should be rewarded with more privilege to do them.". My proposal for how this can be achieved is here: For edit-suggestors with a streak of N approvals, only require one approval for their next suggested edit. The benefit of a streak mechanism is that you can set a low warmup number (streak size) to give an edit suggestor higher trust knowing that if they show a need for further learning of how to do a good job, that trust level can be immediately lowered (to be regained), pointing them to the Help Center and FAQ pages on how to make good edits. You also wouldn't really have to do much adjustment of the numbers with site size.

Allow a user full edit rights at 500 successful edits.

Something felt a bit off to me about this at first, since that's the exact threshold where you stop getting rep from suggested edits (once you earn 1000 rep from it), and currently, you need to make it the rest of the way to unlock full editing privileges by other means (namely writing useful questions and answers). But after some thought, I can't see a reason why this would be a bad thing. If someone can demonstrate doing a job well done 500 times, I don't see why not trust them with full editing privileges. Even if they go rogue and start vandalizing things, we have the regular mechanisms to detect that: custom mod flags, rollbacks, rollback war detection, and post bumping.

  • I thought it was 2000 for some reason. The exact numbers are frankly pulled out of my uh air and part of the goal here would be to reduce the edit queue size on bigger sites without compromising too much on quality Commented Mar 11, 2023 at 4:34

I might have to be the sole dissenter here.

If I recall correctly from not too long ago, I made about 90 or so approved edits before I reached 2k on Stack Overflow. The only thing that I found annoying was that the queue was limited to 500 items at a time, but it wasn't too bad. Before long, I got 2k rep and graduated to full edit privileges. At least on Stack Overflow, 2k isn't an unreasonable barrier.

I don't have any data, but I suspect this happens for most users on Stack Overflow. I don't think that someone would be making a large number of suggested edits but not asking/answering questions. If a user needs 500 approved edits, then they'd already have gotten 1000 reputations from it, so they're not too far off from simply getting the privilege through reputation. Perhaps on a smaller site where 2k is harder to reach, it may happen, but in those cases, I suggest simply lowering the reputation needed for the privilege.

If you really want to give people privileges for good editing, then I suggest bumping the rep rewarded for an approved edit from +2 to +5 and removing the 1000 rep cap for suggested edits. This way users get both the privilege of 400 successful edits and credit towards other moderation-related privileges.

  • 1
    I agree with most of your points. Of note is that as of February this year, the team established an official policy that smaller sites will keep their beta privilege thresholds forever rather than eventually having those increased to full site levels. However, I disagree that lots of edits should count toward high-level privileges - those should require contributing content as well. To that end, the system imposes a 1,000 reputation cap on suggested edits. Commented Apr 29, 2023 at 23:12
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    "I suggest bumping the rep rewarded for an approved edit from +2 to +5" in my mind, fixing two posts' spelling/grammar/punctuation/formatting/denoising is not equal in value to writing a post that is useful to one person (I think it is less valuable), so no- I don't think that's a good idea.
    – starball
    Commented Apr 30, 2023 at 0:30

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