Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair Stack Exchange is scheduled for an election starting next week, October 10th. In connection with that election, we will be hosting a Q&A here for candidates. This will be an opportunity for members of the community to pose questions to the candidates on the topic of moderation. Participation is completely voluntary.

The purpose of this thread was to collect questions for the questionnaire. The questionnaire is now live, and you may find it here.

Here's how it'll work:

  • Until the nomination phase, (so, until Monday, October 10th at 20:00:00Z UTC, or 4:00 pm EDT on the same day, give or take time to arrive for closure), this question will be open to collect potential questions from the users of the site. Post answers to this question containing any questions you would like to ask the candidates. Please only post one question per answer.

  • We, the Community Team, will be providing a small selection of generic questions. The first two will be guaranteed to be included, the latter ones are if the community doesn't supply enough questions. This will be done in a single post, unlike the prior instruction.

  • This is a perfect opportunity to voice questions that are specific to your community and issues that you are running into at current.

  • Please use link syntax using the [](URL) syntax instead of the syntax which puts the URLs at the bottom of the post - it will make creating the resulting questionnaire significantly easier if you do so. Placing raw URLs is fine as well.

  • At the end of the collection phase, the Community Team will select up to 8 of the top voted questions submitted by the community provided in this thread, to use in addition to the aforementioned 2 guaranteed questions. We reserve some editorial control in the selection of the questions and may opt not to select a question that is tangential or irrelevant to moderation or the election. That said, if I have concerns about any questions in this fashion, I will be sure to point this out in comments before the decision making time.

  • Once questions have been selected, a new question will be opened to host the actual questionnaire for the candidates, containing (up to) 10 questions in total.

  • This is not the only option that users have for gathering information on candidates. As a community, you are still free to, for example, hold a live chat session with your candidates to ask further questions, or perhaps clarifications from what is provided in the Q&A.

If you have any questions or feedback about this process, feel free to post as a comment here.

  • This may sound stupid, but I'm unsure what you are getting at about using link syntax ... links for what? (Maybe I'm just dense ... been accused of it before. :o) Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 21:23
  • Unfortunately, there's a high chance that I will be nearly unavailable for most of this period due to work. I'll try my best to make contact with what access I have to Internet.
    – Bob Cross Mod
    Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 21:35
  • @Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2: Just random links to stuff on the internet. If you don't need or want links in your question, don't worry about that bullet point. Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 21:40
  • @JonEricson - Thanks. That seemed to have been the consensus over on chat, but wanted to make sure. Commented Oct 3, 2016 at 21:45

9 Answers 9


I have occasionally seen a user with a high network-wide rep (ie has a lot of positive interaction on other SE sites) cause a lot of friction on a site they have recently joined by insisting that "the site is doing it wrong."

If this occurs here, and causes trouble with the easy going Mechanics community, how would you handle the situation?

  • 2
    Brilliant and thank you. Commented Oct 4, 2016 at 18:06

What, if any, previous moderator (or similar) experience do you have from a different Stack Exchange site, a different website, and/or the real world (e.g. arbitration)?


Here is a set of general questions, gathered as very common questions asked every election. As mentioned in the instructions, the first two questions are guaranteed to show up in the Q&A, while the others are if there aren't enough questions (or, if you like one enough, you may split it off as a separate answer for review within the community's 8).

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

  • In your opinion, what do moderators do?
  • 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?
  • In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?

During Beta (and even today), we pride ourselves as being a very welcoming SE site to newcomers. One might argue that this has a lot to do with the manageable level of questions and new users coming in to the site on a per-day basis.

Question: Now that we've graduated, increased site traffic is a realistic possibility. What policies would you adopt to ensure that the site's association with the "Be Nice" moniker remains?


We have a high percentage of unanswerable questions that lie in wait for further information/clarification from the asker. This is not always due to laziness or neglect on the OP's part; it can take weeks for them to find the opportunity to collect further details about the problem.

Question: As a moderator, what would your policy be towards such questions, and how would you mitigate the issue of accumulation of unanswerable queries on the site?


Moderators, like all humans, are susceptible to fluctuations in the space-time continuum. There will be easy-going periods and times when they are overwhelmed with things in life. More often than not, site moderation will take the backseat.

Evidence: of the five moderators on this site throughout Beta, (to my knowledge) only two remain active.

Question: How much time do you realistically think you can devote to the site? What would you do if you believe it is difficult to continue with moderation responsibilities in the long run?


It is a distinct possibility that you would not be able to answer as many questions while moderating.

Question: Why do you believe that you could contribute more to the site's overall benefit as a moderator rather than a regular user?


As a moderator, how will you keep your fellow moderators in check?

  • 1
    What does, "in check" mean? Commented Oct 4, 2016 at 18:07
  • 2
    @DucatiKiller stopping them running amok with the ban-hammer and doing crazy things they might regret later...
    – Nick C Mod
    Commented Oct 5, 2016 at 8:52
  • @DucatiKiller ... see Nick's comment. Commented Oct 5, 2016 at 13:14

What mechanical experience do you have, and where did you do the bulk of your learning on the subject?

  • Not sure if this is the appropriate place for 'get to know you' type questions, but I'm definitely curious so I figured I'd post it. Commented Oct 4, 2016 at 23:25

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