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Who are the diamond moderators, and what is their role?

I'm wondering how one becomes a moderator, say, on Super User. Is there a process? A certain number of reputation points? I noticed that when one hits 10k, he has "access to moderator dashboard". What does this mean? Can one choose whether or not to become a moderator?

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    Getting betrayed by fellow users that you are way too active and should be punished with moderatorship – Ivo Flipse Apr 10 '10 at 10:24
  • why the downvote? this is a legitimate question? – studiohack Apr 25 '10 at 19:32

Moderators are proposed by either members of the community, or by Jeff. There's an election on meta to see if the choices are OK with the community; then they become moderators on one of the sites and meta.

There have been cases where users have either chosen not to be moderator (the latest Stack Overflow election had one case, Jason Cohen; the moderator position went to Jonathan Sampson) or have given up that privilege/curse (Diago and splattne on Super User).

The 10k tools are different from the moderation tools; a moderator has both more power and more responsibility (just like Spider-Man). The most important one that we, as users, can see is the fact that their votes are binding. If they vote to close, delete flag, the vote is automatically enforced, there's no need for anyone else to cast a vote.

You can find more information about moderator powers and roles in the FAQ, and more information about the nominations and elections on the Stack Overflow blog (check the moderators and community categories).

  • after elections, do the previous moderators step down to make room for the new ones? how does that work? – studiohack Apr 10 '10 at 6:59
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    @studiohack no, moderators have kept their roles. Remember, they've invested a great deal of their time in keeping the sites clean and they also have plenty of experience. Given that most of the moderator actions are transparent, there's no real way to abuse these powers without the community knowing, so there's very little chance of a moderator turning into a quasi-dictator. Also, considering all the Trilogy sites grow from one election to the other, it's always better to have more moderators. – alex Apr 10 '10 at 7:08
  • "so there's very little chance of a moderator turning into a quasi-dictator", well, we have random as moderator, now, so I guess the chances increased slightly :P – Gnoupi Apr 10 '10 at 10:42
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    You spelled "iron fist" wrong. @gno – random Apr 10 '10 at 11:05
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    TheTXI is another ex-SU mod. That site sure burns people up. :( – Ether Apr 10 '10 at 15:42
  • @Ether - It's hard moderator super users. They're so... so... well, super! – Pollyanna Apr 10 '10 at 16:18
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    @Pollyanna they're special, alright... – alex Apr 10 '10 at 17:02
  • @alex: I feel sad for having a high rep on SU. – Hello71 Aug 26 '10 at 17:56

As alex and Sam152 have said, moderators are elected.

The moderation tools available to 10k+ rep users are listed in detail in the accepted answer to this question:
What facilities are there in the moderation tools?

Moderators have more super powers than 10k+ rep users do.

  • I was looking for that question all over the place. Needs an FAQ tag added to it. – alex Apr 10 '10 at 7:12
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    @alex: that's not a bad idea... i've given it [faq-proposed] for now. – quack quixote Apr 10 '10 at 7:41

Once you reach 10k rep you get a few extra goodies (delete closed questions, access to moderation tools), but moderators will full privileges have to be nominated and elected by the community. See here for previous elections and results.

  • that was my question: what does it mean by "access to moderation tools"? – studiohack Apr 10 '10 at 6:59
  • @studiohack: You get a list of highest voted, lowest voted, most commented etc. questions; newly created tags, new posts by new users, etc.; you can see which posts have been flagged as "offensive" or "spam" (but not who flagged them); and you can see which questions have the most close/delete votes or have recently been closed/deleted (by someone else then the owner). – balpha Apr 10 '10 at 7:14

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