2022 Moderator Election

nomination began
Sep 19 at 20:00
election begins
in 23 hours
election ends
in 9 days
candidates
2
positions
3

On Stack Exchange, we believe the core moderators should come from the community, and be elected by the community itself through popular vote. We hold regular elections to determine who these community moderators will be.

Community moderators are accorded the highest level of privilege on our community, and should themselves be exemplars of positive behavior and leaders within the community.

Our general criteria for moderators is as follows:

  • patient and fair
  • leads by example
  • shows respect for their fellow community members in their actions and words
  • open to some light but firm moderation to keep the community on track and resolve (hopefully) uncommon disputes and exceptions

Full elections have three phases and an optional fourth phase (Primary):

  1. Question Collection
  2. Nomination
  3. Primary
  4. Election

Please participate in the moderator elections by voting, and perhaps even by nominating yourself to be a community moderator!

Additional Links

Questionnaire
The community team has compiled questions from meta for the candidates to 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?

[Answer 1 here]

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

[Answer 2 here]

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

[Answer 3 here]

  1. A diamond will be attached to everything you say and have said in the past, including questions, answers and comments. Everything you will do will be seen under a different light. How do you feel about that?

[Answer 4 here]

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?

[Answer 5 here]

gringer

I am a bioinformatics researcher currently working at a medical research institute in Te Whanganui-a-Tara, Aotearoa (New Zealand). I have a formal education in computer science, maths, and biology, and enjoy translating technical language and data into things that other people can understand. I am an existing Bioinformatics Stack Exchange moderator, and have been involved in this community since its proposal and beta phase five years ago.

I have a daily email list set up to see recent questions, and typically encounter new questions about half a day after they're asked. My priority is in cleaning up questions (mostly incorporating comments and changes into the asked question), with occasional removal of unanswered posts that seem stale or obsolete.

I try to value and support new community members, and encourage all answers, regardless of how short or insignificant they may seem.

Questionnaire
  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 am a prolific comment deleter, because the StackExchange guidelines indicate that comments should be transient and only used to improve questions or answers. If people want to have arguments or lengthy discussions, the chat rooms are a better place for that.

Having said that, I would welcome anyone who wants to provide answers, as they can then be upvoted or downvoted by the community. A "convert comment to answer" feature would be very helpful for me, but unfortunately only the reverse is available at the moment.

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

In almost all cases I will respect the decisions of another moderator. Sometimes there are disputes around deletion, etc., in which case one of the moderators or users would create a meta post to help get guidance from the community. When this happens, I attempt to make decisions based on the community preferences, as long as they are consistent with the StackExchange guidelines about conduct and behaviour.

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

In an ideal world, the moderators help long-term users make appropriate decisions around maintaining their own community. Due to the smaller size of our current community, moderators spend a lot of time doing that maintenance work themselves, which has been draining for some of the other moderators. This is work that I enjoy doing, so I'm comfortable keeping the fires burning while better people help to build and develop our community.

  1. A diamond will be attached to everything you say and have said in the past, including questions, answers and comments. Everything you will do will be seen under a different light. How do you feel about that?

I feel less comfortable answering questions as a moderator, because I don't think that increased importance should be placed on my own answers for that reason (but I still answer anyway, if I think I have something different to add to the discussion). Otherwise, I'm okay with the diamond. For the majority of users, it doesn't seem to affect how they interact with me (relative to other users).

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?

Instant comment and question deletion work wonders in stopping destructive or wasteful discussion. I appreciate the time people spend in asking and answering questions on this site, and feel that being part of the moderation team helps me to make sure that users have a good experience when using Bioinformatics Stack Exchange.

M__

History on Stack-exchange

Community member for 3.5+ years, with the highest voting record in Bioinformatics SE (3000+), so I've definitely upvoted you, and I'm the only member to have 2 silver badges for the review queues 😇. More generally, 400+ answers, an equal number of question edits and 'closer' to a 'phylogenetics' silver badge (subject to interpretation).

I spend more time on Bioinformatics SE than as a senior journal editor.

Tech stuff

My specialism is small genomes, notably haplotypes. I am tightly focused on most things Python, with solid experience in stats, pop gen, machine learning and particularly as mentioned phylogenetics. I hold experience in niche areas of eukaryotes, like immunology. Right now I'm into 'high performance' Python. My trick is I can quickly spot biological interpretation through numbers.

Why mod?

Firstly, I like the community a lot and think my stats show that. Secondly, I enjoy biological code-based problem solving and how others solve those problems. Finally, I'd like it to be busier still and want to do my part.

Ultimately, I enjoying spending time here and its the next logical step.

Questionnaire
  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?

Summary. The buzzword is encouragement. Why do you think I've given so many upvotes? However, its scenario specific.

Scenario 1, the most likely situation is simply strong technical bias, for example Perl vs Python, data pipeline languages (which are an industrial standard) versus sub-processing or shell. There's also machine learning versus deep learning, but riots haven't broken out here on that ... Its a simple equation,

proponent of method 1 + proponent of method 2 = dispute

My answer: code is code and we all have to see that from different angles. I'm originally from a Perl background - enough said 😉. On this site its happened and dealt with in comments by past Mods. Their example is the model to follow.

Scenario 2, protecting the user from abuse. Whilst I've been here I've been called 'a nerd' (maybe 'a total nerd') and an 'Oh deary, deary me'. I don't know what a 'deary' is - but doubt its a complement 🙂. However, abuse is cyclic, unhealthy and positively unwanted. I hold the (outside) experience when to delete, quell, or else escalate so here an abuser is accountable to the SE rules. The key is vigilance and speed.

Scenario 3, lingering historic offence but its rare. As a hypothetical example, OP receives a good answer, posts their own answer and marks theirs as accepted. Being a nerd helps, because you know where its all started. One amongst the sensitive scenarios and needs patience, neutrality, thought and encouragement.

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

First of all, I'd examine my own perspective. I get things wrong. Secondly, I'd ping them in confidence and come to an agreement. In exam marking its run-of-the-mill.

  1. In your opinion, what do moderators do?

A mods role here is to provide the healthiest possible environment for furthering biological understanding via informatics both to the OP and to those kind enough to dedicate their time answering.

  1. A diamond will be attached to everything you say and have said in the past, including questions, answers and comments. Everything you will do will be seen under a different light. How do you feel about that?

I am cautious about what I say and write. I rarely pick sides and keep cool. My posts reflect those principles.

  1. In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?

Summarising my intro: I really like the community (see stats), enjoy biological code-based problem solving and I'd like the site to be busier still. The site is now established, no longer beta, has more potential and I want to do my bit having been a part of it for so long.

This election is currently in the nomination phase. Nominations close in 23 hours.

You must have more than 300 reputation to nominate yourself as a candidate in this election.