Hi, I'm caird.
You can find out more about me in my profile, including my favourite accomplishments relating to the site. However, to be brief: I currently interact primarily with the site in an already moderation-forward manner; being a moderator would just improve this.
I am the top editor* on the site, one of the top tag wiki editors and one of the top reviewers (you can find me high up in all the review stats pages). In short, I already spend a lot of time keeping the site clean.
*Martin is listed as having more edits than me here, but for some reason, my profile shows 877 edits, while Martin has 772. Who knows?
- 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?
As I said 2 years ago, I believe in treating all users fairly and equally, regardless of the quality of content they produce. A disruptive user, despite their answers, is still a disruptive user. With such a user, I'd attempt to resolve their disruptive behaviour with them through discussion, but, if this failed to work, I'd employ a suspension.
- How would you handle a situation where another mod closed/deleted/etc. a question that you feel shouldn’t have been?
I've worked well with all the current moderators as a non-moderator in the past, including in situations where we've disagreed. As a moderator, nothing would change: I'd discuss my opinion with them, hear their view, and come to a conclusion between us as to the appropriate course of action.
- An answer is flagged for being non-competitive. It clearly took a lot of effort to make but it makes no attempt to meet the scoring criterion. What steps would you take as a moderator? (For additional context, see the question collection post.)
I've discussed this multiple times before in the past in chat. But, fundamentally, I believe that answers must show, at the very least, a basic attempt to optimise their score. That requirement is, in my opinion, the distinction between us being a competitive coding site and a code sharing site.
In such a situation, I would warn the user that their answer does not make an effort to meet the scoring criteria, and, if not rectified within a reasonable amount of time, I'd remove the post, until the user edited it to improve their score and flagged for undeletion.
- How active are you in chat, and how would you describe your approach to moderating a more informal setting than the site? (For additional context, see the question collection post.)
I doubt anyone's surprised to hear that I'm fairly active in chat. Having been a room owner of TNB for the past 18 months, I'm familiar with moderating one of the most active chat rooms outside of SO, and I'd describe my approach to moderating such an environment as more relaxed than on main/meta, allowing people to enjoy themselves in chat, but more than happy to shut down and move noise and spam. My policy to moderating chat as a moderator is the same as when I ran for RO election.
- Moderators must sign an agreement whose terms include:
i. I will abide by the current Code of Conduct (which is a part of this agreement), and enforce it to the best of my ability. ...
iv. I will abide by all other officially announced moderator and user policies made available to me.
v. I will accept additional guidance given by members of the Stack Exchange, Inc. Community Team and Senior Leadership Team, whether in response to questions, concerns or discussions regarding existing network-wide policies.
How would you respond if a policy or company directive (current or future) seems to conflict with your beliefs and ideals?
I was active during the time/events that caused both this question in the last election, and the change to the Moderator Agreement. My opinion has not changed much since last election, aside from the fact that SE has shown positive changes since then, and so I'm more hopeful about the company now than I was then.
In short: I value my own personal beliefs and ideals over a moderator diamond, and I would not hesitate to step down if I believed SE was violating or opposing those beliefs.
- You've taken what you feel is a reasonable moderation action, but another user brings up an analogous situation in the past where an opposite action was taken, which was also reasonable at the time. How would you react to this user's complaint?
I'd re-evaluate both actions, including discussion with both the user and the moderation team, and then resolve the actions, after the re-evaluation, in what I believe is the most appropriate way.
Ultimately, I think that such a situation would be rare enough to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. I'm generally pretty consistent in my moderation now, I can't see that changing significantly with a diamond.
- A new user posts a question that is an exact duplicate of a much older question. However, it's much less strict than the original and allows classes of answers/languages that wouldn't be possible otherwise. What would you do in this situation?
While we have precedent in reposting older, lower quality challenges, the procedure to do so involves asking on meta. Assuming this hasn't been done, I'd temporarily close the new question as a duplicate, open (or prompt users to open) a discussion on meta, and then, once a consensus is reached, help resolve the posts to best reach that consensus.
- In your opinion, what do moderators do?
Not to be cliché, but moderators are the human exception handlers. I believe they are granted powers to help resolve and fix situations that the regular users of the site cannot.
However, while this is their primary role, I also believe that, on a smaller site such as ours, moderators have additional roles. Primarily: keeping the site clean from spam and low quality posts; acting as ambassadors and pseudo-community-leaders of the site to both the network and new users, and; engaging with the community in events and other community-driven stuff.
- 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've made it clear before that, in the past, I've been in poor standing with the site rules. I've been suspended twice for voter fraud when I first joined, and it look me a long time to get the Curious family of badges due to a series of very low quality challenges early in my site career.
I disclose this as neither a pro nor a con; rather, I believe that moderator candidates should make such information public, and, while I'm ashamed at my behaviour 5 years ago, I think I've grown far beyond the juvenile person I was back then.
Other than that, I'm more than comfortable with a diamond being attached to everything I have or will say or do.
- In what way do you feel that being a moderator will make you more effective as opposed to simply reaching 10k or 20k rep?
I've had all the non-moderator privileges for the past 2 years, and have done a significant amount of moderation work with those powers. However, this effort has given me plenty of perspective as to the difference between rep-based privileges and the moderator abilities, and so, I believe that I'd be much more effective in my aim to keep the site clean and tidy with moderator tools than with my current abilities.
One key example of this is the status tag clean-up, where, last year, I went through all feature requests and bugs on meta, categorised them according to the relevant status tag and then began retagging them. However, as status tag edits are moderator-only, I had to work with hyper-neutrino, flagging each post with the appropriate tag and dumping a massive workload on him. As a moderator, I could have simply co-ordinated with the community that I'd be doing this mass retagging and done it quickly by myself.