# 2018 Moderator Election Q&A - Questionnaire

In connection with the moderator elections, we are holding a Q&A thread for the candidates. Questions collected from an earlier thread have been compiled into this one, which shall now serve as the space for the candidates to provide their answers.

Not every question was compiled - as noted, we drew from the top voted submissions. However, with 9 questions submitted that seems very favored, I opted to grab all 9 such, plus our two fixed questions for a total of 11 questions.

Once all the answers have been compiled, this will serve as a transcript for voters to view the thoughts of their candidates, and will be appropriately linked in the Election page.

Good luck to all of the candidates!

Oh, and when you've completed your answer, please provide a link to it after this blurb here, before that set of three dashes. Please leave the list of links in the order of submission.

To save scrolling here are links to the submissions from each candidate (in order of submission):

Simply Beautiful Art

Asaf Karagila

1. Many moderator duties concern the removal of low quality content. Aside from this, what will you do to facilitate the creation of high quality content?

2. Have you ever been suspended from this site or another StackExchange site? If so, please provide a description of the situation that led to the suspension, and how you have reacted to it. Would you have suspended a user for a similar behavior today?

3. Imagine a time in which the site has become divided between two groups, each of whom desire a future which is anathema to the other. The status quo is unstable; it is all but guaranteed that one group will be seen as ascendant and the other will leave in frustration. And... You've been elected to serve both groups. How might you approach such a situation? If you would seek compromise, how could you hope to garner agreement from enough people to make it work?

4. Why do you want to be a moderator? What is your motivation for running in this election?

5. How will you deal with enforcing policies that you disagree with, if you are elected as a moderator?

6. There are two basic schools of thought regarding PSQs (problem statement questions) - they should be quickly closed and deleted, or they should not be closed or deleted. With which of these two camps do you more closely align? Why? As a moderator, how would you act to enable "your" camp in dealing with or accommodating PSQs?

7. Do you think that your meta participation is enough to know about the current problems the community is dealing with, and the complicated views that people hold about them? How do you justify not participating enough on meta?

8. You're not a moderator in isolation, you're part of a team. What do you know about the other moderators and where do you see yourself supporting or supplementing the work the moderating team do? It seems to me that moderators are as entitled to disagreements between themselves as anyone else, but overall moderation is most effective where there's either a consensus, or a majority-minority split with agreement on how to proceed.

9. It is an unfortunate yet incontrovertible fact that some users see Math.SE as a way to cheat on homework and tests. What ethical obligation, if any, do you believe the moderation team has to investigate and combat academic dishonesty? What actions, if any, would you take if an instructor flagged potential dishonesty in a Math.SE question? Is it ever appropriate to sanction a question-answerer for abetting academic dishonesty?

10. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

11. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc a question that you feel shouldn't have been?

• Sad to see candidates retreating or retreating in anger. Thanks for your effort trying. – mvw Aug 5 '18 at 16:53

Asaf Karagila

1. Many moderator duties concern the removal of low quality content. Aside from this, what will you do to facilitate the creation of high quality content?

I think that high quality content should come from a nurturing environment. If newcomers are better aware of the norms, and are more willing to try and adhere to them, we have a better baseline. That, I think, is a key point in facilitating better content.

Other than this, I am also in favor of the idea of Jyrki and Alexander to have some sort of sponsored content (read: more bounties for excellent answers). I think that if we actively promote this sort of approach—celebrating high quality content—everyone will be happier.

1. Have you ever been suspended from this site or another StackExchange site? If so, please provide a description of the situation that led to the suspension, and how you have reacted to it. Would you have suspended a user for a similar behavior today?

Well, yes and no. Back in 2012 I was in an argument with another user which got way too heated and way too badly. We were both suspended. In my defense, I was writing an email to the moderators asking for their help as it was happening, and upon closer inspection it was decided that my suspension is not justified. All in all, I was suspended for about an hour or so, I believe.

If I would see something like this, the first thing would be to stop the comments before it is too late. I feel that had a moderator stepped in to deescalate the situation before we got to those intense comments, things might have been different. Nowadays with more moderators and somewhat better presence of moderators on chat, I think that would be easier to achieve.

However, I can also imagine this sort of situation happening when there's nobody around. In that case, I feel looking closely at the details is probably a good idea. In the worst case, I am not beyond admitting mistake and reversing a suspension.

1. Imagine a time in which the site has become divided between two groups, each of whom desire a future which is anathema to the other. The status quo is unstable; it is all but guaranteed that one group will be seen as ascendant and the other will leave in frustration. And... You've been elected to serve both groups. How might you approach such a situation? If you would seek compromise, how could you hope to garner agreement from enough people to make it work?

Louis CK once pointed out that anti-abortion comes from the point of view that a fetus is a baby, and if you were thinking that somewhere they are murdering babies, you'd be picketing there too (probably).

The point of the argument is that you need to understand why people feel so strongly about one option or another. After this, we can start and try to encourage talks, and see what's the best compromise for both sides.

1. Why do you want to be a moderator? What is your motivation for running in this election?

The last year or so, I've spent mostly feeling that I'm sitting on the sidelines and watching. My interest started to fade. I want to change that, and I want to put back the effort I've missed in that year "off".

1. How will you deal with enforcing policies that you disagree with, if you are elected as a moderator?

The same as I would enforcing policies that I agree with. If they really bother me, I would raise the issue with other moderators or on meta, poll for public opinion, and see what sort of changes can be made, or be convinced that the policy makes sense.

1. There are two basic schools of thought regarding PSQs (problem statement questions) - they should be quickly closed and deleted, or they should not be closed or deleted. With which of these two camps do you more closely align? Why? As a moderator, how would you act to enable "your" camp in dealing with or accommodating PSQs?

I feel that moderators shouldn't align with either camp. They should, to some extent, uphold the norms of the community. I don't think that PSQs are going anywhere without a substantial change to the underlying norms of the site. To achieve that, some deeper changes are necessary, and I'd be happy to raise these topics for discussion.

Some PSQs are okay, others are awful. It's the greater context that actually matters. I think we paint this problem too much with black and white, and the reality is that there's a lot of gray (and other shades of color, I've been told). We need to focus on that, instead of the extremes.

1. Do you think that your meta participation is enough to know about the current problems the community is dealing with, and the complicated views that people hold about them? How do you justify not participating enough on meta?

Yes. I do.

1. You're not a moderator in isolation, you're part of a team. What do you know about the other moderators and where do you see yourself supporting or supplementing the work the moderating team do? It seems to me that moderators are as entitled to disagreements between themselves as anyone else, but overall moderation is most effective where there's either a consensus, or a majority-minority split with agreement on how to proceed.

I've been very active in moderation related issues for the better part of my time here. I've worked with most of the moderators on some level, and that includes the CMs. The worst thing that could happen is broken moderator team. That happened before, and a lot of terrible things happened. Whatever happens, I will try to make sure that the moderators don't get to that point again.

1. It is an unfortunate yet incontrovertible fact that some users see Math.SE as a way to cheat on homework and tests. What ethical obligation, if any, do you believe the moderation team has to investigate and combat academic dishonesty? What actions, if any, would you take if an instructor flagged potential dishonesty in a Math.SE question? Is it ever appropriate to sanction a question-answerer for abetting academic dishonesty?

This is a slippery slope. I think that the current system works. When something is clearly cheating, it gets deleted. When contest content is flagged, it gets locked and deleted (at least temporarily, if nothing else).

Answerers that are honestly trying to just help someone shouldn't be penalized when they are being misled by the asker. When something is explicitly being asked as "help me cheat", I feel that the rest of the community can penalize that user with a slew of downvotes to that answer.

1. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

Carefully. I don't think there is a "general guideline", and buzzwords like "just like any other user" are not conducive to the reality of the situation.

1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc a question that you feel shouldn't have been?

As I wrote in my answer to question 8, I feel that the worst thing that can happen is that the moderator team gets broken. Overriding without prior discussion is a bad thing. I expect the other moderators to pay with the same kindness just as well. If everyone behaves, there shouldn't be any problem.

• Is that really you? – user170039 Aug 3 '18 at 18:03
• Must be, I don't remember switching bodies with anyone lately. – Asaf Karagila Aug 3 '18 at 18:21
• I thought you said you would never run. So doubts are natural. – user170039 Aug 3 '18 at 18:26
• Yes. I know. I'm still not sure what to make of this. People tell me that change can be good sometimes. – Asaf Karagila Aug 3 '18 at 18:27
• @user243301: Any particular reason? – Asaf Karagila Aug 3 '18 at 21:01
• @George: That's an odd question. – Asaf Karagila Aug 4 '18 at 21:41
• Yes. In other news, it was a pleasant surprise to see you run. I think I know roughly how you feel about it. Listening to the call of duty isn't the easiest thing. – Daniel Fischer Aug 5 '18 at 19:03
• @Daniel: "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." – Asaf Karagila Aug 5 '18 at 19:06
• @George: Again, "free speech" is a broad term. Some people would claim that it is violated because we deleted their spam messages about porn or car sales in some far away country. Others would claim that their free speech was violated because their antisemitic posts was deleted (both of these examples are actual examples of deleted posts, not hypothetical scenarios). Would you say that those deletions were wrong? If so, I'm afraid that we disagree on a fundamental point here. – Asaf Karagila Aug 5 '18 at 20:01
• @George: If I make the judgement that "all atheists must die by fire, their ashes mixed with urine should be dumped on Russell's grave and spat upon" is a generally okay post. Would you think it has something to do with the site? Should it be posted here? I think that you're just digging into your position now,using "free speech" as some sort of a white flag banner. That's just not how free speech works. Sorry. – Asaf Karagila Aug 5 '18 at 20:22
• In case others are unaware, George Chen posted on his profile asking people to Google "george chen Bertrand Russell" to track him on the internet. Doing so leads to his blog with posts such as this (cached here). Note the last three paragraphs in that blog post. – user21820 Aug 6 '18 at 13:26
• @35093731895230467514051: I have used "foul language" in my talks too (by the way, the user refers to me writing the word "damn" in an answer). Do you want me to quit academia too? Let me point out that your behavior have been becoming more and more aggressive and alienating on MathOverflow for a long time before that incident. (And you have been very disingenuous leaving out the details of the foul language, making me seem as if I cursed at you specifically somewhere.) – Asaf Karagila Aug 7 '18 at 5:40
• I deleted a bunch of comments. As the back and forth does not seem to go anywhere and it does not seem overly relevant here either. – quid Aug 7 '18 at 14:09
• @Rene: Unfortunate. It is also unfortunate, however, that people who come to use this site don't spend a little bit longer on the sidelines trying to see what are the community norms (which creates even more of a problem, since those who do wait, often get the wrong idea by seeing badly phrased questions or terrible reactions to them). – Asaf Karagila Aug 7 '18 at 15:49
• @MichaelRozenberg Presumably I am among the 7-8 users whose views you disprove of. I don't recall you ever discussing these themes in meta. Only complaining. I think we need to sit down and discuss this. Such as: what kind of a compromise are you willing to abide by? I have suggested several different compromises over the years (search my posts). But we have users who insist that anything mathematical is fair game, basically saying "screw site hygiene". I have admittedly become more militant lately. That is in reaction to the unwillingness of the other party to compromise. – Jyrki Lahtonen Aug 13 '18 at 9:48

Aloizio Macedo

1. Many moderator duties concern the removal of low quality content. Aside from this, what will you do to facilitate the creation of high quality content?

To be honest, I do not see many tools available to a moderator that would allow to directly facilitate the creation of high quality content. This seems to be a community endeavor. If I am wrong, I would love to hear suggestions.

However, there are ideas that, when supported by moderators, could create conducts that might be able to improve the situation.

One such conduct is to vote up more often in content that you think is desirable. I am under the impression that users (and I include myself in this) tend to, over time, diminish their upvoting pattern. Less upvoting not only means less "incentive" (for better or for worse, we are under a gamified system), but it also makes things seem dead and this can have deceptively deep consequences. Since low-quality content is usually correlated with people wanting to storm in for the acquisition of points, those end up being more active and alive.

Voting up desirable content also makes it more explicit via exemplification what we want the website to be about and can serve as a guide to bypassers and users alike.

This is only one idea (and I think it is the most straightforward one), but I am definitely open to conversation, and I think this is a very important question.

1. Have you ever been suspended from this site or another StackExchange site? If so, please provide a description of the situation that led to the suspension, and how you have reacted to it. Would you have suspended a user for a similar behavior today?

No.

1. Imagine a time in which the site has become divided between two groups, each of whom desire a future which is anathema to the other. The status quo is unstable; it is all but guaranteed that one group will be seen as ascendant and the other will leave in frustration. And... You've been elected to serve both groups. How might you approach such a situation? If you would seek compromise, how could you hope to garner agreement from enough people to make it work?

Well, this question is tough. In part because the hypothesis is so apocalyptic that it almost seems like asking "the end is here, what do you do?".

Nevertheless, an answer is needed. The first thing I would want to guarantee is that people provide reasonable arguments for both sides. As long as both sides are arguing reasonably, I strongly believe that both can coexist. Condescendence, dismissiveness, fatalism etc are symptoms of people unwilling to supply constructive feedback.

If there is no other way, and I was forced to push a button choosing a "group" out of "two" otherwise everything would collapse (for the sake of being explicit, this phrasing is in part intended to illustrate that I think this is an absurd situation), I would choose the group which was more willing to discussion and considering the opinion of others. The rationale is more than just an ethical option: we would have to fix a huge wound, and this can only be done under cohesion.

1. Why do you want to be a moderator? What is your motivation for running in this election?

This website had and still has a very important role on my education as a mathematician. To be more specific and give an example as to how, it was here that I improved the most in my mathematical communication/writing skills. This is very important to me, and I believe that this is hardly achieved by textbooks or other media (apart from face to face conversation), at least compared to MSE.

The way the website is structured propels that even further. But for that potential to materialize, we need a balanced environment in several different meanings. I think I can help achieving that goal, and this is why I want to be a moderator.

1. How will you deal with enforcing policies that you disagree with, if you are elected as a moderator?

I think I will not have any problem with that. As long as there is a rationale behind a policy (and I've never seen one in SE which does not have some thought on it, regardless whether I agree or not), I believe I will have close to zero problem with it. If there is not a rationale, I will probably be a little uncomfortable and try to look up for some justification (if I reached one, then we would be back to the first case), but I will enforce it if necessary.

To give a more thorough description as to why, I believe one positive aspect of my personality is that I am able to consider and evaluate multiple (even conflicting) opinions. This comes together with a blurring of what is agreeing/disagreeing, with me usually just filling a mental tab with aspects of each opinion.

1. There are two basic schools of thought regarding PSQs (problem statement questions) - they should be quickly closed and deleted, or they should not be closed or deleted. With which of these two camps do you more closely align? Why? As a moderator, how would you act to enable "your" camp in dealing with or accommodating PSQs?

This question is tricky in many different ways. First, let me answer the literal question, with "PSQ" meaning "problem statement question".

I don't think PSQ's in this sense need to be quickly closed and deleted, a priori. They live in a grey area, with some good questions lurking underneath (although the majority is almost certainly bad ones). To give an example, take this and this (Disclaimer: I am one of the answers of the first one). I think they are a good addition to the site, and I personally would like more questions like these. Sometimes, the question can be contextualization by itself. In the end, this is a judgement call of the community and is more nuanced than usually is admitted.

That said, there is the nonliteral question, which is "PSQ" meaning "please-solve question" and the like (usually accompanied by a demanding tone). These should be quickly closed and deleted, in my opinion, as I believe they do not resonate any good aspect we expect to cultivate here.

I understand and agree that there is a positive correlation between those two interpretations, but I believe that they are conceptually different, and this can pop up in practice more often than expected.

All in all, I believe that we strive to have questions which make the website something that we would willingly recommend to colleagues/students/etc as a high-quality resource for mathematicians, math-users, math-entusiasts and math-learners. The struggle for "context" by part of the community is a very good attempt at this. I picture "context" as anything that would make the question interesting, meaning people willing to answer or acknowledging that an answer would be interesting if this was asked apart from gamification aspects. This justifies why it is so difficult (and even impossible) to pinpoint more precise descriptions of what that means, and that it may also be irreparably subjective.

I hope people understand that it is impossible to dive into the many intricacies of this subject in an answer of a questionnaire, but also that I clarified my opinion in the matter sufficiently enough.

Just to close the issue, with respect to 'enable your "camp"(...)', I wouldn't actively want to do anything with respect to this issue. The community is too polarized regarding this. Furthermore, I think I am not fit as a member of any of those camps, as my answer above implicitly illustrates.

1. Do you think that your meta participation is enough to know about the current problems the community is dealing with, and the complicated views that people hold about them? How do you justify not participating enough on meta?

Yes. However, it is important to notice that I only started (actively) participating in meta in the last year or so. This means that I do not have the emotional baggage of some discussions which have existed for "ages". I know them, sure, and I've read them thoroughly, but I may not empathise with the feelings of people who have been actively discussing some topic over and over again. I don't think this is inherently good or bad, but is something worth noticing.

1. You're not a moderator in isolation, you're part of a team. What do you know about the other moderators and where do you see yourself supporting or supplementing the work the moderating team do? It seems to me that moderators are as entitled to disagreements between themselves as anyone else, but overall moderation is most effective where there's either a consensus, or a majority-minority split with agreement on how to proceed.

I've engaged in direct conversation with a large part of the moderators, and I've seen all of them express their thoughts somewhere. They all seem intelligent, and I believe that working with them (if I were to become a moderator) would be a pleasant experience.

The question "what do you know" is complicated, since what there is to know are facts like names, nationalities etc. The rest is opinion, and I don't believe this is the right platform and place to praise or criticize the actions and thoughts of moderators (also due to the fact that they are potential "coworkers"). I've agreed with them in the past, I've disagreed with them in the past, and I've always appreciated the fact that there is thought in the discussions, regardless of the difference or not of opinions. I think this is enough to be said, although it isn't much.

I would add to the team by being another working hand in the daily tasks and chores, and a listening ear to the wide plethora of different opinions.

1. It is an unfortunate yet incontrovertible fact that some users see Math.SE as a way to cheat on homework and tests. What ethical obligation, if any, do you believe the moderation team has to investigate and combat academic dishonesty? What actions, if any, would you take if an instructor flagged potential dishonesty in a Math.SE question? Is it ever appropriate to sanction a question-answerer for abetting academic dishonesty?

Obligation to investigate? None. This has a high potential for going out of bounds. Imagine a moderator having to scavenge some professor's website in another language to see if some exercise is a direct translation, or something similar to that.

Luckily enough, dishonest people are usually not very bright, and their action is frequently very easy to spot. Also luckily enough, the community is quite engaged in solving those situations, so I think moderator intervention is frequently not needed in those cases (which is probably a good thing).

If some situation is not clear-cut and escalates, then moderator intervention may be welcome, but mainly to handle the situation as a whole (meaning addressing the discussion that often ensues after these types of issues).

Regarding the question "Is it ever appropriate to sanction a question-answerer for abetting academic dishonesty?", this is very nuanced. Sometimes people disagree over what is/seems to be academic dishonesty and even what is/seems to be abetting academic dishonesty. But due to the phrasing "is it ever", my answer is: Yes, there are cases which make that an appropriate course of action.

1. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

I would proceed as I would with a regular user.

1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc a question that you feel shouldn't have been?

Cohesion is an important aspect in any team responsible for moderating a community. If the situation was relevant enough, I would discuss it privately with the other mod and attempt to understand the thought that went behind the decision. Even if I ended up not agreeing, this would probably be as far as my actions go.

If the situation has some deep repercussion and discussion and I end up thinking that presenting another point of view to the community could be a positive thing, I may attempt to do that. But being respectful, acknowledging the validity of the multiple opinions and never deviating from the cohesion of the team (I've never seen a situation here in meta where there was a point so absurd that it couldn't have been reasonably defended, so I am pretty confident that this last phrase is always a possibility). I would also communicate this with the team beforehand, of course.

• "dishonest people are not very bright", while this might be the rule, there are plenty of exceptions to that rule. – Asaf Karagila Aug 1 '18 at 12:13
• "I would proceed as I would with a regular user.", while it is good to have the approach of "no one is above the law", in reality there is certain leeway given to certain users (regardless to whether or not I am one of these users and what kind of leeway). This is the sort of bias that comes from "familiar" vs. "unfamiliar". Some users are prone to make more jokes, or write in a tone that can be easily interpreted as offensive (regardless to the intention). With a new and unfamiliar user it is easy to assume the worse, with familiar users it is easy to assume the best [...] – Asaf Karagila Aug 1 '18 at 12:16
• [...] I think that you are deceiving yourself when you say that you'd do the same for all users. At the end of the day, reality shows time after time after time: people are less likely to turn on their closer friends and family members when they exhibit "usual behavioral patterns". People are less likely to turn on "powerful people" (see the MeToo movement), when they are going out of line, and if only because it could end up being more of a hassle. Sometimes these are justified, and sometimes these are not. I think you are interpreting this question in a fairly naive way. – Asaf Karagila Aug 1 '18 at 12:18
• Let me add that it might be easy to think that I am in favor of abandoning these personal biases, but that is certainly not the case. At least to a certain degree, letting some people have "more freedom" can be useful. This is why certain people are entrusted by governments to act in what might seem as unlawful ways. Yes, there should be oversight and "high value" users should be accountable to their actions. But it is certainly useful when "familiar people" are allowed to operate "within their familiar ways", as long as it is within reason and people are not excessively offended by them. – Asaf Karagila Aug 1 '18 at 13:42
• [...] find my style somewhat offensive at times. I can even understand them sometimes, but these are just cultural differences. Just like how I hate being called "sir", and I feel that this can be borderline annoying mockery because of cultural discrepancies. I don't usually flag these behaviors, but some people would. And while I'm not worried about myself, the point is that cultural clash bring with it flags about high profile users. Sometimes because of the high profile they tend to get involved more often with users and thus generate more flags. These are sometimes justified [...] – Asaf Karagila Aug 1 '18 at 22:45
• [...] and sometimes they are not. The important thing is that moderators know the high profile users, and can assess whether or not the behavior was really out of line, or just a cultural clash, or a new user who is in the wrong feeling persecuted. Now, in addition to that, at least one user claimed that my attitude was the reason for them to quit set theory. So I wouldn't say that behavior of this site has no effect, I think that you might underestimating things here. In any case, the point about family and friends is not about being "part of somethings", it was just an example. – Asaf Karagila Aug 1 '18 at 22:48
• @user170039: I'm not sure as to what exactly you mean. But there are some people who are a bit more aggressive towards newbies who repeatedly post PSQs or misbehave; I myself can be a bit cynical and sarcastic with people who ask what I feel are stupid questions (which I sometimes feel are somehow deliberately "I don't want to think" sort of questions). These can have hit-miss results. Sometimes the goal is to "slap someone back into reality" and it works, and they realize they are being silly, or that they are out of line, or whatever. Sometimes they get mighty offended. – Asaf Karagila Aug 1 '18 at 22:50
• @AsafKaragila You can hike a trail, and have a trail of followers. And watch movie trailers. But I think you mean "trial" here? (your first in the sequence of comments.) – amWhy Aug 2 '18 at 14:01
• @Takahiro: Why do you think that high reputation correlates to being a good moderator? – Asaf Karagila Aug 4 '18 at 12:12
• @Takahiro: But being a moderator requires a whole other kind of skill set. – Asaf Karagila Aug 4 '18 at 13:52
• @Takahiro: That's the point. Writing a lot of answers and getting a lot of votes just requires dedication to internet points. Moderating this site is completely different, it requires much more than just being able to solve integrals and differentiate functions. – Asaf Karagila Aug 4 '18 at 15:29
• AloizioMacedo - I am not targeting you alone. I find the best moderators are those with a sense of humility; sometimes this may be expressed through self-deprecating humor, and/or when they are able to own up to mistakes, and apologize, if needed. (We all make mistakes, even moderators.) Could you share a situation on this site when you knew you were mistaken, and acknowledged it? – amWhy Aug 5 '18 at 22:22
• @ReneSchipperus I think there are very non-trivial relationships between level, context etc, not one implying any other, but with possible correlations (which may be needed to be analysed more thoroughly) of varying degrees. For example, if someone posts the question "Prove that $f_{\Delta}$ is a chain map", although this lives in the environment of "high-level" (at least in the sense of being in an advanced subject, although the question is trivial when stated clearly), this is not a good question for MSE imho. – Aloizio Macedo Aug 7 '18 at 18:42
• If someone posted the version "I am trying to prove that the map $f_{\Delta}$ induced in singular homology by a continuous map $f$ is a chain map. I think I managed to prove the result for simplexes, but not general chains, and I am slightly confused on this general case", this is a question which I would find suitable (probably even good) for MSE. For one, I would know that the issue that the user is facing is probably a discomfort with formal sums, which is part of the objective of providing context. – Aloizio Macedo Aug 7 '18 at 18:42
• On the other hand, the question about the subspace of $\mathbb{R}^2$ is clearly not an exercise (well, I would find it very unusual to see this as an exercise in some algebraic topology book/list of exercises). It seems a genuine curiosity, and is a deceptively non-trivial question. It is also self-motivated: in fact, writing out a motivation for this question can probably be artificial. Furthermore, asking for an "attempt" seems unwarranted in this case. – Aloizio Macedo Aug 7 '18 at 18:42

Simply Beautiful Art

1. Many moderator duties concern the removal of low quality content. Aside from this, what will you do to facilitate the creation of high quality content?

Upvote good content, use bounties, critiquing through comments, and being an example.

1. Have you ever been suspended from this site or another StackExchange site? If so, please provide a description of the situation that led to the suspension, and how you have reacted to it. Would you have suspended a user for a similar behavior today?

Never have been, never will (I hope).

1. Imagine a time in which the site has become divided between two groups, each of whom desire a future which is anathema to the other. The status quo is unstable; it is all but guaranteed that one group will be seen as ascendant and the other will leave in frustration. And... You've been elected to serve both groups. How might you approach such a situation? If you would seek compromise, how could you hope to garner agreement from enough people to make it work?

I would seek compromise and listen to what both sides have to say and try to work it out. I would favor the side I find to be more reasonable, but I would also try to keep all parties in mind. I think the first step is to try to reach a more stable status quo, with a short-term compromise, after which a long-term compromise may be discussed, and hopefully by then the fiery passions will have cooled more.

If no such long-term compromise exists, then it may become my duty to simply let things be, and try avoid the complete destruction of the community.

1. Why do you want to be a moderator? What is your motivation for running in this election?

Why? I'm not entirely sure if I'm being honest. But I had a calling (something in the form of multiple pings) and a desire to run the day I received that email notification when the election was announced. I have not much to gain from this and no reason other than a sincere sense of belonging here (most of the time).

1. How will you deal with enforcing policies that you disagree with, if you are elected as a moderator?

I would try to do my best to enforce the policies. If it becomes difficult to perform, I would discuss the issue with the mod team and suggest possible changes. If worst came to worst, I would resign.

1. There are two basic schools of thought regarding PSQs (problem statement questions) - they should be quickly closed and deleted, or they should not be closed or deleted. With which of these two camps do you more closely align? Why? As a moderator, how would you act to enable "your" camp in dealing with or accommodating PSQs?

I most definitely fall under the "quickly closed and deleted" category. This is simply a matter of where my morals lie. I find PSQs disrespectful, as I believe they undermine the value of our community, wishing to put little in to get more out of.

I understand that there are opposing arguments to this matter as well. Some feel there is too much hostility to newcomers, which often don't know any better (who reads the boring stuff you have to accept before posting your first question anyways?). However, those of you who've used this site long enough and have participated in the nitty gritty politics that goes around here know that there is hostility at every corner. Taking from Log Horizon (an anime), we are forced at birth into a world with dark things, but what matters is what good you make out of it. Aside from the amazing things this site gives and keeps on giving, participation is optional. You can always leave at your whim.

There are also those who care not either way, and simply wish to share their knowledge. I too, agree with such an ideal, but believe it should be used with restraint. Many PSQers ask similar questions, over and over, learning nothing from their previous questions and their responses, which kind of defeats the purpose.

And there are plenty of other arguments to be heard. But no solution is perfect, and being too ideal can bring people down.

As a moderator, close, reopen, delete, and undelete votes would be binding, so I would use them sparingly. I may, however, share some questions/answers with the CRUDE chatroom and let them deal with them as they pleased. Finally, I would use my upvotes, downvotes, and comments as I normally would.

1. Do you think that your meta participation is enough to know about the current problems the community is dealing with, and the complicated views that people hold about them? How do you justify not participating enough on meta?

I've been a participant of meta since the past two years, and much more so since the past year. I've seen most of the major discussions on metas, both sides of each argument included. And I am fairly active as far as new things arising on meta.

1. You're not a moderator in isolation, you're part of a team. What do you know about the other moderators and where do you see yourself supporting or supplementing the work the moderating team do? It seems to me that moderators are as entitled to disagreements between themselves as anyone else, but overall moderation is most effective where there's either a consensus, or a majority-minority split with agreement on how to proceed.

I think that by voicing my opinions and concerns whenever something comes up already adds a lot to the team. Likewise, I will listen to what others have to say (you included) and will do my best to keep different parties in mind.

1. It is an unfortunate yet incontrovertible fact that some users see Math.SE as a way to cheat on homework and tests. What ethical obligation, if any, do you believe the moderation team has to investigate and combat academic dishonesty? What actions, if any, would you take if an instructor flagged potential dishonesty in a Math.SE question? Is it ever appropriate to sanction a question-answerer for abetting academic dishonesty?

Though my morals are strongly against cheating and academic dishonesty, I believe investigating people without evidence or strong reasons is an abuse of power. In the event that there is a reason to investigate, I would try to discuss with the other party as well as the mod team, and penalize them as appropriate.

If I were the instructor, I would probably fail them. If they have a good case, like if they only asked a few times for a little help on some problems, I might make them do an alternative assignment instead. And, of course, they'd have to listen to a good ole "professor rant." :-)

Supporting such behavior is a big NO in my book. I think I've made this clear.

1. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

I would treat them like any other user to the best of my ability. Certainly, producing a lot of content is nice, but no excuse for misconduct. Penalties, if necessary, will be used, and the fact that suspensions get lengthier each time should speak for itself.

1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc a question that you feel shouldn't have been?

I would try to discuss it with them. If we cannot agree and neither of us cedes the argument, believing the issue is too large to let go, we will discuss it with the the entire mod team.

• It will be difficult to vote for a someone (who's expected to moderate our site) who is biased from the beginning. In my opinion a moderator shouldn't be "taking sides" at all (I am not claiming that you are) because either absence of explicit action against those activities which necessitates them or implicit support from a moderator are both harmful for the community in the long run. – user170039 Aug 3 '18 at 4:08
• @user170039 Why do you call this candidate biased? Because they have an opinion on PSQs that's different from yours? That is one issue (may be the issue) where I would say it is impossible not to have an opinion at all. A most likely reason for not having an opinion about PSQs is to have never visited meta. Would you really prefer to have moderators wearing blinders? – Jyrki Lahtonen Aug 3 '18 at 8:26
• @user170039 Moderators are human. It is impossible not to have opinions. I assume you mean my actions in CRUDE. If so, I do not believe those folks will care one way or the other whether I leave questions and answers in there or not. As to whether or not I feel a strong connection to them and how we influence each other, I can only say that I've been in there many times before, but as per my recent break, not very much. – Simply Beautiful Art Aug 3 '18 at 12:34
• @JyrkiLahtonen: It suffices to say that having an opinion about something is not necessarily a bad thing. But what is bad for the community in the long run is when your actions get biased by your opinion. As a moderator, I think, you need to see and understand both sides. But if you already have a psychological bias towards any particular side then, well, you are not fit for moderation. – user170039 Aug 3 '18 at 12:44
• Most of the people believe that they "will be able to understand different sides of different things", but in reality they often just don't put the effort to even try to, dismissing the concern as simply being borderline even when in presence of sufficient evidence. "Just because I hold strong opinions over one topic does not mean I will let them get in the way either" - sure. But that's your opinion (or belief) - what convincing evidence does the community have to believe that? – user170039 Aug 3 '18 at 13:23
• @user170039 this starts to wear off-topic, but your stance seems to be based on the premise that all sides are equally worthy of consideration. Usually this just isn't the case. (It may or may not be the case in the specific situation, but that's a separate concern..) – quid Aug 3 '18 at 16:30
• @user170039 what does "initially" refer to specifically. That's just playing around with words. Maybe "initially" it was not clear if murder and robbery are a good thing for a society, but this does not mean that a working member of the police each time they want to arrest a robber needs to conduct a philosophical seminar beforehand. (Maybe even now some disagree about this; alright, it still should not affect the work of the police, either.) – quid Aug 3 '18 at 16:45
• @user170039 Are you really saying that a police officer biased in favor of upholding a law should not act because they are biased. Or a janitor "biased" in favor of keeping the floor clean should not mop it? – Jyrki Lahtonen Aug 4 '18 at 6:57
• Hello, SimplyBeautifulArt! I am not targeting you alone; I'm asking this of all candidates. I find the best moderators are those with a sense of humility; sometimes this may be expressed through self-deprecating humor, and/or when they are able to own up to mistakes, and apologize, if needed. (We all make mistakes, even moderators.) Could you share a situation on this site when you knew you were mistaken, and acknowledged it? – amWhy Aug 5 '18 at 22:24
• @RobertFrost It really depends on the question. Some are salvageable, some are not, in my opinion. Usually though, I will leave a comment. – Simply Beautiful Art Aug 6 '18 at 21:22
• @DRPR The first scenario is definitely a problem. Writing out what you do know about the problem is beneficial for us. It let's us know how exactly we can help, what you know and don't, etc. In short, it can change the way we respond, and allows us to handle the situation better. Not only that, but it directly helps the asker too, since elaborating the problem may itself help you solve the problem, or for future purposes, understand your own mistakes and/or shortcomings. – Simply Beautiful Art Aug 7 '18 at 12:02
• @DRPR The second situation is a misunderstanding. It is perfectly reasonable to have no clue how to solve a problem when asking it, so an attempt is not the only way you can provide context, which serves a purpose as described above. For more information concerning this type of scenario, see How to prevent “no clue” questions?. [...] – Simply Beautiful Art Aug 7 '18 at 12:09
• @ReneSchipperus "this site needs new people (especially at a lower level, after all, to whom will we show off our knowledge ?)" is fairly egotistical. My opinion is that this site's purpose is to build a repertory of knowledge, not for showing off. "These new users need to be shown that they will benefit from the site." Benefit in what sense? That they will be given answers when they post their homework? That we, as a community, hold an obligation to answer their questions? My opinion is not only that their participation as askers is voluntary, but so is ours, as answerers; we owe them nothing – Simply Beautiful Art Aug 7 '18 at 16:36
• @ReneSchipperus By turning some away? There are two sides to this argument, and I fear letting the site lean too far to one side will turn away the other (in fact some have already left us due to this!) Why not stop those people from leaving? And some people come here to cheat, and some wish to help them, perhaps even knowing what they are doing? Why stop that from happening (or not)? We can't please everyone, nor should we, but even in the current situation, those users you speak of are already giving, freely, to the users that stick it out when joining this site. Are we really stopping them? – Simply Beautiful Art Aug 7 '18 at 17:19
• @SimplyBeautifulArt Apparently this user wants to answer these types of questions because 'people want reputation'. Please feel free to take a look at our discussions. – TheSimpliFire Aug 7 '18 at 18:16

TheSimpliFire

(yes, surprising appearance here :)

1. Many moderator duties concern the removal of low quality content. Aside from this, what will you do to facilitate the creation of high quality content?

Instead of immediate closure of low-quality questions, I have been seeing an increase in comments encouraging the asker to read show their workings/use better formatting. This is good as it gives the asker a chance to mend their post and saves moderators time from reopening.

This is what I have been doing as well, and when I have the time I would edit the question for the asker. Most low-quality content is from new users, so if they ask a good question, then I would definitely vote up as this would give them an incentive to continue writing such posts.

1. Have you ever been suspended from this site or another StackExchange site? If so, please provide a description of the situation that led to the suspension, and how you have reacted to it. Would you have suspended a user for a similar behavior today?

I have not been suspended so far so I cannot provide too detailed a comment.

1. Imagine a time in which the site has become divided between two groups, each of whom desire a future which is anathema to the other. The status quo is unstable; it is all but guaranteed that one group will be seen as ascendant and the other will leave in frustration. And... You've been elected to serve both groups. How might you approach such a situation? If you would seek compromise, how could you hope to garner agreement from enough people to make it work?

Discussion is necessary here. MSE users are human, and humans have reason. Both sides are needed to be heard from, and in the majority of cases, there has to be something that both agree with.

1. Why do you want to be a moderator? What is your motivation for running in this election?

I would not have thought of creating my own blog if it weren't for this site. It has allowed me to think of new ideas, new ways to solve problems, sharing and taking in new knowledge. This, I thank the site. I would like to continue this positive atmosphere amongst all MSE users, and moderation is key to this.

1. How will you deal with enforcing policies that you disagree with, if you are elected as a moderator?

I would try to understand the reasons behind those policies. In the end, if I do disagree, I would open up a discussion in meta.

1. There are two basic schools of thought regarding PSQs (problem statement questions) - they should be quickly closed and deleted, or they should not be closed or deleted. With which of these two camps do you more closely align? Why? As a moderator, how would you act to enable "your" camp in dealing with or accommodating PSQs?

I am on neither side. I think that for PSQs, there should only be closure/deletion if the asker of a low-quality question does not respond/act to comments encouraging them to provide their efforts.

1. Do you think that your meta participation is enough to know about the current problems the community is dealing with, and the complicated views that people hold about them? How do you justify not participating enough on meta?

Yes, my meta participation is increasing as I am more familiar to the workings of the site. I do admit that it is inadequate, which is why I am more active there now.

1. You're not a moderator in isolation, you're part of a team. What do you know about the other moderators and where do you see yourself supporting or supplementing the work the moderating team do? It seems to me that moderators are as entitled to disagreements between themselves as anyone else, but overall moderation is most effective where there's either a consensus, or a majority-minority split with agreement on how to proceed.

I have communicated with them on multiple occasions, mainly via comments. All the moderators I've met are very approachable.

1. It is an unfortunate yet incontrovertible fact that some users see Math.SE as a way to cheat on homework and tests. What ethical obligation, if any, do you believe the moderation team has to investigate and combat academic dishonesty? What actions, if any, would you take if an instructor flagged potential dishonesty in a Math.SE question? Is it ever appropriate to sanction a question-answerer for abetting academic dishonesty?

There is no obligation, as it wastes time searching. If I eventually realise that a question is, for example, an assignment or contest problem, I would vote to close as soon as possible. This minimises the chance of an answer being provided, which can prevent cheating.

In most cases, such sanctioning would be inappropriate, as the answerer, in most cases, does have a positive intention of sharing knowledge.

1. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

I would talk to them, explaining their behaviour, and why their arguments are not positive to the community. Hopefully they will listen, and they will avoid starting controversial arguments. But the purpose of SE is a Q&A site, which they are heavily contributing to, so I would avoid escalating the situation.

1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc a question that you feel shouldn't have been?

Before I vote to reopen, I would talk to the moderator and we would give our own reasons. This is important as it would prevent me from making a wrong decision.

• I would like to pick your mind a little regarding a couple of your answers. Is there any chance that you might drop in on the election chat? – Xander Henderson Aug 2 '18 at 16:05
• Since Math.SE is a site that caters to a broad spectrum of mathematics questions, there may be times where one has to draw on mathematical knowledge/experience to form a judgment about a situation. May I ask what is your background? After a quick scan of your posts, I see material on what I would consider elementary mathematics, but I'm not clear on your background more broadly, e.g. in abstract algebra, topology, functional analysis, etc. etc. Do you feel comfortable judging whether to migrate questions to e.g. MO? – user43208 Aug 4 '18 at 1:37
• @user43208 I have a degree in pure mathematics, hence why quite a few of my answers are on (elementary) number theory. I would migrate a question to MO if it was a research-level question that asks about mathematical papers/articles. – TheSimpliFire Aug 4 '18 at 7:57
• @user43208 tangentially, while your question is a good one in general, the specific reason 'migrating to MO' is hardly ever relevant in practice. Almost always migration is declined on formal grounds (neither answer, nor substantive comments, means no migration); at least that's what I do and think is the correct course of action. There was a single migration math.se to MO in the last three month. – quid Aug 4 '18 at 22:38
• @quid Thanks; I hadn't been tracking that. My unease with the idea of Math.SE moderators who lack broad mathematical experience is not something I've tried to articulate carefully, and admittedly I'm not immersed in Math.SE "culture" (faute de mieux), but instinctively I feel it's an important consideration, based on my experience with MO. – user43208 Aug 4 '18 at 22:59
• @ReneSchipperus Firstly, MSE isn't just a 'do-your-homework-for-me' site. Secondly, having the OP to provide their attempts shows where they got stuck and thus we could provide answers that are suited to OP's level. – TheSimpliFire Aug 7 '18 at 16:19
• @TheSimpliFire Please explain the hostility to homework questions. If someone doesnt want to answer the question, they can just move on and do something else. There may be others who do want to answer the question, why take that away from them ? Also the argument about providing attempts is disingenuous, its just a masked hostility to someone posing their homework. If someone wants to help OP and find their level they can engage in comments. I have thought about this for some time and OP and Answerer can have a number of motivations, you cannot simply legislate the type of interaction. – Rene Schipperus Aug 7 '18 at 16:36
• @ReneSchipperus Please see here. If we neglect these questions, this will lead to an endless pile of unanswered, low-quality questions. This is why 'close' and 'delete' buttons are introduced. – TheSimpliFire Aug 7 '18 at 16:49
• @ReneSchipperus 'People want reputation'. Please do not generalise this to all users of MSE. This is why there is a guide to asking questions; the term 'low-quality' is what the majority of users agree to. – TheSimpliFire Aug 7 '18 at 16:59
• @ReneSchipperus That is entirely your decision. But you clearly haven't fully understood the 'workings' of MSE. I hope that you eventually do, and that you will eventually agree that LQ questions should not be answered 'just for rep'. – TheSimpliFire Aug 7 '18 at 18:10
• @ReneSchipperus How am I being insulting to you? I am simply discussing why low-quality questions should not be given (full) answers to. – TheSimpliFire Aug 7 '18 at 18:20
• The statement that I dont understand the site, and the way you answered my first question saying "first, this is not a homework site.." that was like you are lecturing to me or talking down to me. Its OK, I can take it, but it is not a good attitude for a moderator. We need less authority in a new moderator the current ones (quid) have too much. – Rene Schipperus Aug 7 '18 at 18:28
• At this point in time, @ReneSchipperus, you're making it easy for candidates since most users will read your hostility as misplaced and not based in reason, and will likely dismiss your rants as opinionated, lacking anything in the way of your providing reasoned, respectful, arguments. – amWhy Aug 7 '18 at 18:40
• @ReneSchipperus Asking here is not supposed to be too easy. Proper context, tagging etc. makes the difference between a well organized library of knowledge and a pile of discarded lecture notes on the floor. Read Joel Spolsky's (CEO of StackExchange) blog where he compares asking at SE to participating in Burning Man. There they have, for example, a rule that you need to yourself carry your waste water out of the desert yourself. Because abidance to such rules is necessary for the event to be repeat. – Jyrki Lahtonen Aug 8 '18 at 9:21
• IOW: the same reason why in coffee rooms at workplaces all over the world they have signs Your Mommy doesn't work here! You are to clean up after yourself. Here that means that you are not leave those unorganized notebook sheets lying around. – Jyrki Lahtonen Aug 8 '18 at 9:23

Nick

1. Many moderator duties concern the removal of low quality content. Aside from this, what will you do to facilitate the creation of high quality content?

Edit, upvote, bounty and share on social media. The goal is to help generate more high quality content than delete low quality ones. And ofcourse, a lot of low quality posts do have to be removed. Not only attract those who can do good content but also, assist the community, in all ways possible, in refining their abilities and output to be of good quality.

1. Have you ever been suspended from this site or another StackExchange site? If so, please provide a description of the situation that led to the suspension, and how you have reacted to it. Would you have suspended a user for a similar behavior today?

No suspensions till date.

1. Imagine a time in which the site has become divided between two groups, each of whom desire a future which is anathema to the other. The status quo is unstable; it is all but guaranteed that one group will be seen as ascendant and the other will leave in frustration. And... You've been elected to serve both groups. How might you approach such a situation? If you would seek compromise, how could you hope to garner agreement from enough people to make it work?

Instability is already status quo. I'll just do my job as moderator irrespective of who's who. Content is king.

General niceness will help curb any frustration. We can always to try to lay the facts bare for any disputing parties to settle their quarrels objectively and cleanly.

1. Why do you want to be a moderator? What is your motivation for running in this election?

To become an asset to the community. To do meaningful work of benefit to others. Most of all, to fulfill a responsible role with a good amount of diligence.

We have today to do what matters most. I aspire to have a positive influence on other people, I know I’m not going to accomplish that by being the loudest or most charismatic person in a room. What I can do is read, learn, and listen as much as humanly possible and channel my findings into something productive. As a moderator, this would be much simpler.

1. How will you deal with enforcing policies that you disagree with, if you are elected as a moderator?

Meditate on points of the policy I disagree with. Understand why it became policy and enforce it only within bounds of the strictness imagined in its formulation and stringency ideally required and no more, no less.

1. There are two basic schools of thought regarding PSQs (problem statement questions) - they should be quickly closed and deleted, or they should not be closed or deleted. With which of these two camps do you more closely align? Why? As a moderator, how would you act to enable "your" camp in dealing with or accommodating PSQs?

Yes, PSQs should recieve quality answers. So, I belong to the latter school of thought. The actions thus far taken by other moderators to handle PSQs since the beginning of MSE serve as a guiding force to deal with newer ones.

1. Do you think that your meta participation is enough to know about the current problems the community is dealing with, and the complicated views that people hold about them? How do you justify not participating enough on meta?

Although I restrain from direct participation in the meta, I do read up on the important discussions there from time to time.

It is irrefutable I have not been on meta enough but that should not take away my belonging to the community. It is ofcourse necessary to adhere to the community's way rather than the way only a few mods see fit.

1. You're not a moderator in isolation, you're part of a team. What do you know about the other moderators and where do you see yourself supporting or supplementing the work the moderating team do? It seems to me that moderators are as entitled to disagreements between themselves as anyone else, but overall moderation is most effective where there's either a consensus, or a majority-minority split with agreement on how to proceed.

Although it is in my nature to concede to experienced authoritarians, I shall try my very best to be completely objective in matters and disdain from disagreements with little to no long-term function.

What I know about the other nominees is that they are here with the same intention as I, that is to continue on with the traditions of MSE and to tinker with the imaginable ways of improving upon what is here already.

1. It is an unfortunate yet incontrovertible fact that some users see Math.SE as a way to cheat on homework and tests. What ethical obligation, if any, do you believe the moderation team has to investigate and combat academic dishonesty? What actions, if any, would you take if an instructor flagged potential dishonesty in a Math.SE question? Is it ever appropriate to sanction a question-answerer for abetting academic dishonesty?

There is no tag more widely discussed than homework on SE. It is generally accepted that hints are to be provided for such questions.

This area is slightly gray because at the intersection of research and standard curriculi lie treasure troves of easy, interesting, intuitive things. Would it be fair to take that away from the public, I don't know. But moderation will typically be done the way it has always been done, with great caution and educated judgement.

1. How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?

Possibly, introduce and acquint them into a chatroom would be the best option.

1. How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc a question that you feel shouldn't have been?

I would take it up with that mod and vote for reopen/undelete hoping for the best. There's only a few reasons for such an action on a question. More often than not, a question that feels right for MSE is right for MSE.

• "There is no tag more widely discussed than homework on SE. " - Not to nitpick, but hasn't that tag been blacklisted? – Ron Gordon Aug 1 '18 at 21:04
• @RonGordon indeed. The hw model of questions will still always be there regardless of the tag. – Nick Aug 1 '18 at 21:10
• For 11, you cannot vote and then hope for the best if elected. Moderator voting are binding (I don't mind seeing some moderator close/open war though). – user99914 Aug 1 '18 at 21:38
• Your answer to question (3) reads like a platitude. Do you understand that there very much is such a division on MSE right now? Indeed, question (6) was written in order to force candidates to take a stand on that very division. You say that you would take action on PSQs in a manner similar to the way that current moderators take action. Can you please elaborate on that point? Can you provide any examples? – Xander Henderson Aug 1 '18 at 21:39
• Your answer to (1) is vague and borderline meaningless; (3) is just populism, showing little understanding of how meta issues work: if nothing else, general niceness makes everyone feel like they are being played with and much more frustrated; (4) is just speaking in slogans; (5) sounds like "I won't do it properly, I will do it in the way I see fit", which to me sounds unacceptable of a moderator; (6) moderators don't make decisions, the community does, and the community is split, so your answer is meaningless; I gave up remarks after that. – Asaf Karagila Aug 1 '18 at 22:39
• Do you understand the meaning of authoritarianism? – Andrés E. Caicedo Aug 2 '18 at 0:08
• In (7) you write: "It is irrefutable I have not been on meta enough but that should not take away my belonging to the community." Yes there are many community members that have not visited meta much at all, like you. You, and they, are indeed community members. But you fail to address that in running for a moderator position, you should be a member of the community who has shown extensive participation on main, and on meta, and in utilizing any/all user-moderation tools available to you. Being a community member is a necessary, but not sufficient, condition for anyone wanting to be a mod. – amWhy Aug 2 '18 at 0:20
• To whom doing the feeling are you referring when you say "a question that feels right for MSE is usually right for MSE"? So you'd agree that when any user finds a question that "does not feel right for MSE, then the question is not right for MSE. How will you handle situations in which there are many users on each side of whether a question "feels" right for MSE or not? – amWhy Aug 3 '18 at 15:34
• Hi, Nick! I am not targeting you alone. I find the best moderators are those with a sense of humility; sometimes this may be expressed through self-deprecating humor, and/or when they are able to own up to mistakes, and apologize, if needed. (We all make mistakes, even moderators.) Could you share a situation on this site when you knew you were mistaken, and acknowledged it? – amWhy Aug 5 '18 at 22:22
• For some unknown reason upon reading this I found myself thinking that it would take upon an entirely more favourable perspective if read in an Indian accent. Upon seeing your declaration I realise to my surprise that my instinct was right! I fear your writing style may have been misconstrued somewhat, to your disadvantage. – samerivertwice Aug 6 '18 at 20:35
• In your nomination post you mention that this is not your first account. Did you delete your previous account at some point? If so, may I ask you why you did this? – Arnaud D. Aug 7 '18 at 10:03
• I just saw the moderator election. Why did you withdraw ? – Rene Schipperus Aug 7 '18 at 16:59
• @ReneSchipperus Nick has not withdrawn from candidacy. – amWhy Aug 7 '18 at 19:10