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It's custom for SE sites to hold regular moderator elections. However, it seems there has been no election on EE for 4 years. List of elections.

Why is this so? The site appears to have a steady growth of users and we need moderator numbers to grow in proportion to this, in order to preserve quality and prevent moderator burn-outs.

Also, since moderators are volunteers and can go inactive like everyone else, keeping a steady flow of new moderators is important. Particularly if the veteran moderators can teach and mentor new ones.

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    \$\begingroup\$ In a recent conversation between the EE.SE moderators and the SE staff, it was determined that an election is not needed at this time. \$\endgroup\$ – Dave Tweed Sep 21 '18 at 14:19
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    \$\begingroup\$ That analysis seems to overlook the fundamental reason why elections (vs appointment, dice role, or blessing by a deity) were invented by societies in the first place. If re-election is not necessary to stay in office, then there's a design defect based in a fundamental misunderstanding of what elections are for. \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Sep 23 '18 at 15:54
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    \$\begingroup\$ @ChrisStratton That's a good point. However, moderators are volunteers, doing tons of work for no payment. They also have very little say in how the site is managed by SE the company and they don't act or have the mandate to act as a voice of the community. So it can't really be compared with democratic elections. Rather, we should be grateful that anyone at all wants to sign up to do all that work. \$\endgroup\$ – Lundin Sep 24 '18 at 6:46
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Lundin every time a moderator makes a judgement call they are acting as the voice of the community. We should have the opportunity to renew the mandate of those who have spoken well, and replace those who have exercised poor judgement. \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Sep 24 '18 at 15:01
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    \$\begingroup\$ @ChrisStratton No, moderators should act on established rules and policies. Special cases that aren't obvious but need some manner of judgement call should be discussed on meta. \$\endgroup\$ – Lundin Sep 24 '18 at 15:07
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    \$\begingroup\$ @ChrisStratton Meta.SE thread about re-elections or lack thereof: Should Community Moderators be “elected for life”, or have terms? \$\endgroup\$ – Nick Alexeev Sep 28 '18 at 2:54
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Currently we don't really need more mods, as flags' handling is not a big issue. We have an average of about 2 hours before a flag is handled, and the queue is more often empty than full.

I have to add that Dave, W5VO and Nick are handling the great majority of the flags, and if one of them were to go inactive we would soon need to replace him.

What could be helpful, in my opinion, is to increase the reviewing activity, by established users more than mods.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ How many active mods are there, not counting SE employees? \$\endgroup\$ – Lundin Sep 21 '18 at 14:05
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Lundin Four, all of them currently active \$\endgroup\$ – clabacchio Sep 21 '18 at 14:06
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    \$\begingroup\$ That's not a lot at all! Given that there's hundreds of questions hitting the site every day. \$\endgroup\$ – Lundin Sep 21 '18 at 14:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Lundin yes but mods are less for reviewing and more for handling flags, which are not so many. Perhaps having more active reviewers would also increase the number of flags \$\endgroup\$ – clabacchio Sep 21 '18 at 14:16
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Lundin For reference, StackOverflow has over 100x the questions we do, and they have 24 moderators. \$\endgroup\$ – W5VO Sep 21 '18 at 14:55
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Lundin The number of questions hitting EE.SE each day is around 80 on weekdays, around 60 on weekends. \$\endgroup\$ – Nick Alexeev Sep 21 '18 at 22:11

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