I like to feel like I'm a fairly helpful member of MSE, even if I don't have a lot of time to spend on it. But I'm befuddled by the difficulty of obtaining the "Custodian" badge!

Complete at least one review task.

That would seem easy, and maybe I should just hit reload a million times on the review queue instead of doing my day job. But it seems like there are so many people on MSE that this is actually quite difficult? Even on SO this isn't a problem.

A decent answer to either of the following questions will be up voted:

Should some (currently bronze) review badges be silver or gold instead, on MSE only?

Should there be a mechanism to "save" review tasks for people?

I assume most people will say no to both, but I hope this is an appropriate topic for meta.MSE.

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    $\begingroup$ I will just mention that at 3000 reputation points you will be able to review close and reopen votes. As you can see, hundreds posts are still waiting to be reviewed in the close votes review queue. $\endgroup$ Apr 6, 2019 at 11:04
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    $\begingroup$ According to the Help Center, you need at least 500 reputation to "access first posts and late answers review queues". Since you currently have more than this, you should be able to get the Custodian badge if you complete a first post or late answer review task. Why do you find it difficult? Is it because when you look at the review queue, someone else has finished all the reviews? $\endgroup$
    – JRN
    Apr 6, 2019 at 11:05
  • $\begingroup$ @JoelReyesNoche Bingo! Every. Single. Time.' $\endgroup$
    – kcrisman
    Apr 6, 2019 at 11:15
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    $\begingroup$ @MartinSleziak true, I did notice that. But my point is not so much about my own badges, but that in general the Custodian (and possibly other) badges are much, much more difficult to obtain on MSE than on other SE sites. $\endgroup$
    – kcrisman
    Apr 6, 2019 at 11:16
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    $\begingroup$ Ha! Try getting review badges in meta! ;-) $\endgroup$ Apr 7, 2019 at 12:08
  • $\begingroup$ Haha, nice! But of course that isn't a fair comparison ;-) $\endgroup$
    – kcrisman
    Apr 8, 2019 at 14:08

2 Answers 2


I will point out that badges should be secondary, primary concern should be doing things that are useful for the site. So from this viewpoint, if you find the review queue empty, that's a good thing.

Still - with this in mind - I will leave a few comments:

  • At 3000 reputation points you will get access to the close votes review queue and reopen votes review queue. The close votes review queue usually has quite a lot of posts waiting to be reviewed - as you can see is is about 300 at the moment.

  • If there is a suggested edit on your post, you as the post owner have the final say and you can change the decision - even if the suggested edit has been reviewed by other users before you saw it. (Still, I don't think doing so just to get a badge is great idea. Revert the decision only if you really disagree with it.) Full access to the suggested edits review queue comes at 2000 reputation points, together with full editing privileges.

  • There are also review audits, which are shown to users to check whether they are not reviewing too carelessly. In case of review audit, other users cannot finish it before you, since it is not a real review. So if you just wish to get a badge, simply visit the review queue from time to time - although the exact algorithm how it is decided when a review audit is shown to a user is not publicized, I think it is quite likely that eventually you'll get some review audit. (Here I mean not just looking at number of available review jobs, but actually going to the first posts/late answers/low quality review queue. Even if the number of available reviews is shown as zero. In fact, if you see that there are zeroes reviews and still you are offered a post to review, this is an indication that this is very probably a review audit.)

Here is also a link to a discussion on Meta Stack Exchange: Reopen vote review badges are difficult to achieve. It is not about custodian, more about Reviewer (250 review tasks) and Steward (1000 review tasks). But still, the topic of the discussion is (to some extent) related.

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    $\begingroup$ I think it is worth elaborating on Martin's first sentence. Please don't rush reviews in the pursuit of badges. It appears that a nontrivial number of review votes are cast without enough careful consideration (e.g. if a user wrongly assesses a dupe claim then this error is rarely corrected by subsequent voters once it enters the review queue). $\endgroup$ Apr 6, 2019 at 17:30
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    $\begingroup$ "I will point out that badges should be secondary" - oh, I agree 100%. If you look at any of my profiles you'll find I don't exactly go for badges on purpose - apparently I don't even have "Critic" on MSE, which would be easy enough to chase down! My reason for posting is that it seems bizarre to me that there is such a radical disconnect here, and it would seem to subvert the point of the badge system - which, regardless of how it "should be", clearly is designed to encourage people to go for them :-) $\endgroup$
    – kcrisman
    Apr 7, 2019 at 2:57
  • $\begingroup$ @BillDubuque - Absolutely; on the sites where I do perform reviews regularly, I probably have the opposite problem of agonizing over how to do the best review. $\endgroup$
    – kcrisman
    Apr 7, 2019 at 2:59
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you for the link to the Meta on the main site; that is worth an up vote for sure. $\endgroup$
    – kcrisman
    Apr 7, 2019 at 3:00
  • $\begingroup$ Ha, though now you got me curious so I will go fetch the "Informed" badge. $\endgroup$
    – kcrisman
    Apr 7, 2019 at 3:03

In my opinion, the badges are awarded in exactly the right way based on the user's contribution to the site as it is. Bronze badges are awarded for completing one review, which I do not believe is too difficult (even before reaching, say, 2k rep). If memory serves me right, I had already completed around 100 review tasks when I reach 2k reputation, so I'm not sure what your problem is.

On the other hand, the silver badge is given at 250 reviews, the gold one at 1000. I think this is perfectly fair. Each user is only allowed a maximum of 20 reviews per day, per review queue, so to get either of these badges signals that the user is really dedicated enough to improve the quality of the site that they are willing to complete their reviews for 20+ or 50 days (for the silver and golden badges respectively). I don't think, therefore, the threshold should be either increased or decreased.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Oh, I'm not worried about the silver etc. badges at all, and very little about the bronze ones. But still have yet to see a SINGLE review activity available for me when I look. Granted, I do not look very often. But still that is very different from my experience on the other SE sites. So I guess you are answering some other question than mine; I'm specifically asking whether some bronze-on-other-sites should be silver/gold-on-MSE. I'll slightly edit my question to make that clear. $\endgroup$
    – kcrisman
    Apr 9, 2019 at 2:28

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