# Why are 3 moderator positions available in the December 2014 election?

Recently Willie Wong announced that he is retiring as moderator. A moderator election just started, in which there are 3 available positions. This makes me wonder:

Are other moderator retirements expected soon? Will we have an increase in the number of moderators? How was the number 3 determined?

• I suspect that a die was cast.
– Asaf Karagila Mod
Dec 8, 2014 at 23:49
• If you have been following the moderators user profiles, you might notice that one of them has been mostly inactive for quite some time now. It might be reasonable to speculate this moderator will be replaced as well.
– Asaf Karagila Mod
Dec 9, 2014 at 0:29
• We consulted The Book of Armaments.
– robjohn Mod
Dec 9, 2014 at 0:59
• Thank god! robjohn is not leaving! Dec 9, 2014 at 3:43
• @robjohn: That might be one of the best comments on meta. I demand that a special badge in the shape, color and consistency of Eric Idle will be awarded to you.
– Asaf Karagila Mod
Dec 9, 2014 at 3:57
• How was the number $3$ determined ? $-~3=\lfloor\pi\rfloor=\lceil e\rceil$. Dec 9, 2014 at 6:17
• @AsafKaragila: no, we flipped a coin. And both sides were heads. [There's some truth to that: the mods had a long discussion about the number and of those who voted (I didn't, since I don't think it was my place to in this instance) chose 3 as the number.] Dec 10, 2014 at 15:09
• @Willie: Is this because 3 is between 4 and 2, also known as 42, also known as The Answer?
– Asaf Karagila Mod
Dec 10, 2014 at 15:58
• If I recall correctly, there was an instance where a moderator retired but no new election was held. Perhaps this is why there are 3 positions available. Dec 13, 2014 at 8:31
• @user157227: See the quote of Arthur Fischer in the second comment.
– Asaf Karagila Mod
Dec 14, 2014 at 20:05
• I guessed correctly about Alex.
– Asaf Karagila Mod
Dec 23, 2014 at 20:12
• 3 new mods? Half-Life 3 confirmed. Dec 24, 2014 at 17:11

As indicated in the comments, one other moderator retired, and the number of moderators increased by $1$.