When reaching 1k reputation, user gains the create gallery chat rooms privilege, which states:

A gallery chat room allows anyone to enter, but only specific users may talk in the room, as determined by the room owner.

Do moderators bypass that, or do they also need a room owner to give them access?

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    meta.stackexchange.com/help/privileges/gallery-chat-rooms Any user can view gallery chat rooms. Commented Jun 9 at 9:54
  • @RandomPerson sorry I meant contribute (e.g. chat.) Commented Jun 9 at 9:59
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    Actually this is not addressed at all in the FAQ, and not even in the help center in the privilege page. The answer is "Yes, moderators can chat in any room, including gallery, frozen, and deleted room" but I prefer someone else to write it as answer as it feels wrong to outright reopen and add answer. Another option is to update the FAQ then it can be closed again as dupe of it. Commented Jun 9 at 14:59
  • Mods are human too. Before being moderators they are also site users, so yes they can chat just like you or me. If that's the question. Commented Jun 9 at 15:54
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    @AugustoVasques no, there is the create gallery chat rooms privilege, granted at 1k reputation on ordinary sites. That's what the question is about, the help center does say e.g. "only specific users may talk in the room, as determined by the room owner" without mentioning moderators at all so it's really not trivial knowledge. Commented Jun 9 at 17:10
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    Anyway I took the liberty to rewrite this into a more clear support question, where the actual question get the focus. Commented Jun 9 at 17:13
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    @ShadowWizard. Now, after your editing, the question is making sense. Commented Jun 9 at 17:22
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    @ShadowWizard I edited this other FAQ proposal which outlines chat privileges to add this info there. Note that the ability to chat in a room without explicit write access applies to any owner of the room (which I'd tested earlier), and that post also says that moderators have all room owner privileges. Commented Jun 9 at 19:52
  • @ShadowWizard thanks very much for editing and re-opening. Do you happen to know why this question has gotten so many downvotes- as it is a genuine question that didn’t have a duplicate when I asked it? I am not accusing you I am purely wondering if you know. Commented Jun 9 at 20:46
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    I didn't downvote, but I have faced this type of downvoting in the past on my own questions. Generally, there are three cases: 1. a lack of research, such as not going and testing this out for yourself before asking, 2. the belief that this is an "obvious" question that "anyone who's participated for long should know", or 3. the belief that there's some ulterior intent behind the question, such as a complaint that a mod chatted in a room which you own that you made as gallery and didn't grant access to mods. Commented Jun 9 at 22:38
  • @SonictheAnonymousHedgehog thanks- that makes sense. But I am not saying it could have been interpreted as one of your reasons but personally, I have not intended it to be any one of them. But thanks very much anyway. Commented Jun 9 at 23:24
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    @security_paranoid While I, also, didn't downvote, I'd assume that it's mostly the "obviousness" issue. If moderators weren't able to participate in the room, then they wouldn't be able to moderate the room's activity, which would, clearly, be counter to the concept of having moderators. If no moderators could participate in the room, there would be something seriously wrong (which would have been at least discussed, probably multiple times, if it wasn't fixed).
    – Makyen
    Commented Jun 10 at 2:50
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    The initial revision was unclear, see @AugustoVasques first comment. Some users might have seen the question as "moderators should not be able to post in chat" or something along those lines. I know that wasn't the intention, hence my edit. Commented Jun 10 at 6:29
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    @Sonic while the answer is indeed there, I think it's too "far away" so not closing. The answer here is perfect for the question, and anyway looks like it's going to get closed anyway. Commented Jun 10 at 6:30

1 Answer 1


Moderators have full access to gallery chatrooms provided they are a moderator on the chat server they're accessing. They can also access private rooms created by other moderators, provided they are moderators for that chatroom's parent site.

Next to the lock icon on a gallery chatroom, there's a diamond ♦ icon. The tooltip for it indicates that moderators have full access to these rooms:

image of a gallery room with a diamond visible, hovering over the diamond shows the "moderators have full access to this room" text

It should be noted that moderators, at least in my experience, will not chat in or otherwise adjust gallery chatrooms they haven't been invited to chat in unless they have proper reason to (such as for reasons of moderation). I'm not saying this cannot or won't happen, just that it's unlikely a random moderator would use their mod status to hop in without reason.

That ♦ icon can be present on private rooms created by a moderator as well, indicating that moderators also have full access there (again, assuming they are moderators for the chatroom's parent site if it has one, see this answer for more information about SE chat privileges). Private rooms are denoted with a similar lock icon as a gallery chatroom, except with an X on the lock body:

image of a private room with a diamond visible, hovering over the diamond shows the "moderators have full access to this room" text

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    "...and private rooms created by other moderators, provided they are a moderator on the chat server they're accessing". Not quite; you must be a moderator on the site that the room is parented to. For instance, I can't see private rooms on Science Fiction & Fantasy without explicit access. For rooms parented to the Stack Exchange network on the chat.SE server, any moderator can access that room. It gets a bit more complicated when you take into consideration staff-moderated rooms, and there's one other special case, but that's slightly out of scope for this question....
    – Mithical
    Commented Jun 9 at 17:51
  • "Private rooms without these diamonds can exist." - I'm not sure what you're referring to, aside from possibly staff rooms.
    – Mithical
    Commented Jun 9 at 17:53
  • Your first sentence is at least partially inaccurate (see Mithical's statements above) . Actually, there's quite a bit here that's inaccurate, including almost your entire last paragraph.There is an additional type of room that CMs can create. Those are indicated by the same lock icon followed by a ♢. That type of room is what @Mithical is calling a "staff" or "staff-moderated" room. Your first statement about them is correct (unless the moderator has been granted the access to do so), but your next two statements are false.
    – Makyen
    Commented Jun 9 at 19:09
  • Actually, @Makyen, I was referring to staff rooms as in staff-only rooms hosted on the Meta chat server. However, those aren't generally in use anymore, since the company migrated to Slack over Bonfire.
    – Mithical
    Commented Jun 9 at 19:19
  • @Mithical Hmm... OK. I haven't seen one of those, as far as I recall. So, I guess the last paragraph could be talking about those, and might be accurate. Overall, however, this answer is, at best, only partially accurate in that it ignores the chat room parent issues on chat.SE wrt. how moderators are treated in private ♦ rooms and doesn't talk about private ♢ rooms (as opposed to private ♦ rooms), two types of rooms which moderators and some users encounter regularly, while, maybe, talking about staff rooms, which are seen by staff and, maybe, a very small number of users and moderators.
    – Makyen
    Commented Jun 9 at 19:37
  • Thanks very much for you answer- +1 for going to the effort of taking those screenshots! Commented Jun 9 at 20:42
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    I've gone ahead and corrected the record on private room access and removed the mention of private rooms without diamonds next to them since it's super out of scope for the question anyway. But just to be clear, I was speaking about staff-only rooms that have invited mods/users in, @Makyen. Given that you guys had to guess, I had certainly been unclear anyway.
    – Spevacus
    Commented Jun 9 at 21:15

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