Server Fault's 4th moderator election has come to a close, the votes have been tallied, and the 2 new moderators are:

HopelessN00b Sven

They'll be joining the existing crew shortly — please thank them for volunteering, and share your assistance and advice with them as they learn the ropes!

For details on how the voting played out, you can download the election results here, or view a summary report online.

Please also join me in well-wishing splattne and mrdenny, who are stepping down after 5 years of service to this community.

  • 3
    So does that mean this site will be "nicer"? I have 20 years of experience, but turned off by the site.
    – TLDR
    Dec 3, 2014 at 17:48
  • 9
    Moderators don't dictate the tone of a site, @TLDR; at best, they can lead by example and rein in abuse. The level of "nice" / helpfulness / usefulness is determined by the folks participating here - where y'all go is up to you.
    – Shog9
    Dec 3, 2014 at 17:51

3 Answers 3


I know AndrewB already referred to Iain's theory, but I thought it was worth spelling it out:

Iain said a couple times that all the discussion about moderation style and intent didn't matter because when it came to the election, people would come in and just vote for the candidates with the highest reputation.

And sure enough...

To be clear: I think N00b will be a great moderator and I don't consider his election to be a problem.

But it's very interesting that for all the sturm und drang about this community's attitude, the result shows that most voters completely ignored all that discussion.

Anyway... MOAR! Close votes!!!!

  • 10
    And credit to you, according to the election results you outlasted two users with more rep than yourself, which certainly shows how much the active/literate community around here respects you. You were my first choice, for how little that seems to have mattered. :( Dec 3, 2014 at 0:17
  • 1
    Even mods only get one vote :P
    – Basil
    Dec 3, 2014 at 3:34
  • 4
    @Basil actually everyone gets three votes ;) (just to be pedantic) Dec 3, 2014 at 3:46
  • 5
    That's the best kind of correct: technically correct.
    – Basil
    Dec 3, 2014 at 12:35
  • 2
    I'm a little disappointed we couldn't elect a mod who knows where the up vote button is located. :(
    – Doug Luxem
    Dec 4, 2014 at 18:38
  • 1
    The top 3 sorted by reputation was the most popular combination, but it still only got 33 votes. I mostly ignored reputation when voting, and considered more what I noticed the candidates doing on this site outside of the election area. For what it's worth: My top two votes had less than 20k reputation.
    – kasperd
    Dec 5, 2014 at 0:43

Haha, wow. HopelessN00b making the cut and Ward not is a double upset compared to the meta voting. Did not see that coming at all.

Thanks to everyone who participated. We'll get you in one of these days, Ward. :)

Interesting observations...

  • Voting participation has continued the two year trend in increased activity, despite SF's overall activity continuing to be on the decline.
  • Maybe there is some merit to Iain's theory after all. :(
  • 3
    That is unfortunate...
    – ewwhite
    Dec 2, 2014 at 21:13
  • Around the same percentage of eligible voters voted this year compared to last year (they're both around 6%).
    – hichris123
    Dec 2, 2014 at 21:16
  • @hichris123 That doesn't quite go against my overall point: s/participation/eligibility/ and it remains the same.
    – Andrew B
    Dec 2, 2014 at 21:17
  • Yeah, looks like more people participated (as in, looked at the election page), but around the same percentage voted. Not sure what to think about that. Also less eligible voters visited the site during this election vs the last... also something interesting.
    – hichris123
    Dec 2, 2014 at 21:20
  • 3
    No offense to teh N00b, whom I like very much, but I suspect that what many perceived/perceive as an outsider coming in and taking potshots at him and his nomination spiel helped his campaign. Opposition tends to cement strongly held opinions and positions, rather than changing them. See Backfire Effect, etc. Dec 2, 2014 at 22:05
  • 6
    @KatherineVillyard Iain's theory, which I am sadly now convinced is correct, is that the overwhelming majority of voters just look at rep, and Sven and I were the candidates with the top rep scores. Lines up with >800 voters against ServerFault's much, much, much smaller number of active users. Dec 2, 2014 at 22:10
  • 3
    @HopelessN00b The clear solution is to hide rep on the voting page. Our moderators can be chosen by the number of badges they've collected instead.
    – Andrew B
    Dec 2, 2014 at 22:38
  • 1
    @AndrewB: Not the badges, please. They are a lousy representation, IMHO. It should be just the nomination with a link to the Questionnaire. But this would likely end up in a) even worse participation and b) a more even distribution of votes because more people would just vote for the three topmost candidates, which are random for every page display.
    – Sven
    Dec 2, 2014 at 23:01
  • @Sven It was sarcasm, no worries.
    – Andrew B
    Dec 2, 2014 at 23:17
  • 12
    To be blunt, HopelessN00bs history of comments towards users that are rude and/or offensive makes me concerned about the results of this election... But I'm hoping I'm wrong. Dec 3, 2014 at 1:28
  • 5
    @Kyle The way I look at it, either he does a good job or serves as the incarnation of why the system is broken. A useful role regardless of which side the coin lands on.
    – Andrew B
    Dec 3, 2014 at 1:35
  • 21
    @KyleBrandt With respect, I think it's time for the parents to stop arguing in front of the children. Stop undercutting the new mod. Dec 3, 2014 at 4:06
  • 4
    @KatherineVillyard Kyle hasn't said anything I wouldn't tell anyone myself if asked... or for that matter, anything I didn't already say in my nomination and/or candidate question and answer. Frankly, I value directness and bluntness... which has a lot to do with those many comment flags I've racked up over the years. :) (So I appreciate Kyle shooting straight and not dancing around his concerns). Anyway, point being, that I don't see it as arguing or getting undercut. Seriously, my response to my election was the Kent Brockman quote "democracy simply doesn't work." Dec 3, 2014 at 6:35
  • 1
    @HopelessN00b Fair enough, but I think that the time to raise concerns was during the election itself. Democracy may or may not work, but you still won. Some folks have made it plain that they don't like you and/or disliked your spiel; that's fine. IMHO, it's time for Kyle to take his concerns to you directly, mod to mod, seeing as how you're both the adult supervision now. And frankly, it's different coming from you than it is from another mod. From you, it's charming and humble. :) From another mod, not so much. Dec 3, 2014 at 13:38
  • 5
    @KatherineVillyard I think it's important to note that Kyle's diamond (like Shog's) is because he is an employee. He has mod powers, but I can't recall the last time he used them here. I'm not saying that makes anything better or worse - just that it's worth noting.
    – MDMarra
    Dec 3, 2014 at 15:12

Congrats Sven, sorry Ward, and... well, I'll let Kent Brockman say the rest.

I will try not to screw it up too badly, too quickly.

  • 6
    Your first order of business is to fix the search results for duplicates so that canonical answers appear first. That's part of a moderators duties, they just didn't tell you before the election.
    – TheCleaner
    Dec 2, 2014 at 21:24
  • 4
    @TheCleaner I'll ban as many n00bs as it takes to fix that search order. Better get started. Dec 2, 2014 at 21:32
  • Congratulations! Dec 2, 2014 at 22:06
  • 2
    @HopelessN00b: Same to you, and thanks to (nearly) every other candidate and the leaving mods.
    – Sven
    Dec 2, 2014 at 22:32
  • @TheCleaner I believe shog9 is already looking at dupes meta.serverfault.com/questions/6693/…
    – user9517
    Dec 3, 2014 at 20:45
  • @Iain - yeah I know...that's what actually came to mind when I said it...figured since Shog9 needed help Hopeless could branch out into programming.
    – TheCleaner
    Dec 3, 2014 at 22:27

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