|“||Moderator: n. A wiki editor who has proven themselves, through time and talent, to be worthy of the use of special tools and abilities on a wiki.||”|
If you don't know what a Moderator is, look carefully at the general definition above, especially one key word: editor. That's right, in spite of all the extra tools or so-called "powers", Moderators are still, first and foremost, a wiki editor.
Moderators, which is a custom user rights group, are wiki editors who have access to technical features that help with maintaining wikis. Different users have access to different site functions. While anyone can do most things on the site, including reading and editing, Moderators can access a few additional functions. For a complete list of users who currently have Moderator access, see Special:Listusers/moderator.
Note that moderators are not "required" to use their administrative rights, but when they do it is appreciated.
Custom User Group
Moderators have a custom set of tools that provide a functional role which fits between the rights of a user with no extra tools and those of an Administrator. This tool set includes Delete, Block, and Move as well as access to edit fully-protected pages.
The primary reason for this custom user group is to create a functional role between normal users and administrators, as a basis for learning the ropes with a limited but useful tool set. These tools, used appropriately, allow a Moderator to delete article page, blog posts, and comments, block problematic users (vandals/sockpuppets), and move pages and files.
Moderators: What They Are NOT
Moderators are not full Administrators. While they do have the Block too, they should not be consulted to block other users. They can mediate disputes, but should not try to decide the issue. They are encouraged to suggest following of guidelines and policies (mostly by setting a good example), but are not expected to enforce them or threaten any kind of enforcement action.
- Judges: Moderators should always encourage quality edits, as the idea of a wiki is to have a decent resource that anyone can edit. They should not put down other editors, however, because their edits do not meet some sort of unreasonable or unreachable standard. Asking a user to improve grammar is one thing; putting them down or threatening to ban them because of they disagree with the edit is not.
- Owners: Moderators do not own a wiki. They cannot exclusively control everything that goes into it. They cannot pick and choose who and what works for them. Everyone should have free access to the wiki, including those who operate differently from a Moderator's ideals.
- Punishers: Moderators should not use their tools to punish users for the slightest transgression by banning, blocking, or reverting. That's a blatant abuse of the tools they've been granted, and is just asking to get them revoked.
Some Moderators, unsure of their roles, may make mistakes, usually along the lines of those above. No one's perfect; as long is the damage is fixed and apologies are made, then it shouldn't be a big deal. However, if an Moderator flagrantly does one or all of the above, it may require a reassessment of their role.
The following comprise Gizmonauts Wiki Moderators:
Like Bureaucrats and Administrators, members with Moderator rights are available to assist members should they have any questions.
Note: The rights of a Moderator, Administrator, and Bureaucrat does not signify a position of leadership or authority. If any user with Administrative rights is believed to be abusing their rights, please contact another active Bureaucrat or Administrator to file a complaint.
Moderators have “tools” to do certain things that help with maintenance. Moderators are not permitted to engage or participate in edit wars for any reason (i.e., continuously and repeatedly revert edits). Doing so may result in loss of rights.
- See also: Gizmonauts Wiki/Admin Tools
Moderators can delete and undelete pages and uploaded files. On most wikis, deletion is normally done to remove vandalism or not needed pages. Moderators must make well informed decisions when handling the deletion of pages. Should an Moderator delete any page by accident, s/he must undelete it immediately.
- See also: Gizmonauts Wiki/Admin Tools#Delete
Moderators have the ability to block and unblock users from editing for a period of time, which is determined by the blocking Moderator. On most wikis, blocks are usually done to prevent users from vandalizing or disruptive editing. Should any Moderator perform an accidental block, s/he must unblock that user immediately.
- See also: Gizmonauts Wiki/Admin Tools#Block
- Under certain circumstances, members with Administrative rights can edit the interface by changing system messages and skins.
- All Moderators have access to certain special pages that normal users do not. These pages include:
For more information on when and when not to use Administrative tools, please refer to our admin tools page.
Becoming a Moderator
Every so often, users are asked if they wish to become a moderator or users may ask to be considered for the role. However, moderators need to show that they can cope with a fair bit of responsibility. To request the position of moderator, please see Request Rights for moderator rights. Before doing so, it should be noted that prospective (and incumbent) moderators should be able to:
- Stay calm, mature, and rational at all times.
- Be able to negotiate and cope with not always getting their way.
- Have a high standard of reasoning and communication skills.
- Demonstrate reasonable wiki skills.
Users who Requests for Rights are represented publicly to the Wiki Community who may view and comment (Approve, Oppose, and Neutral) on all requests.
All votes given will be counted equally, meaning that an administrator vote is not worth more than a non-administrator vote, however, it is less likely a request will be approved if the majority of administrator votes are opposed. An active Bureaucrat will make the final determination whether or not to grant the requester moderator rights.
Note: Final determination will be based upon all input provided, not simply by which vote has the highest number.
Removal of Rights
Bureaucrats are able to strip Moderators of their rights. This can occur through multiple processes:
- Community decision resulting from a bad conduct discussion;
- Unilaterally, a Bureaucrat decision resulting from especially egregious behavior on the part of the individual, where delay could result in greater damage to the wiki.
- Any extended period of inactivity, with or without prior notice, is grounds for removal of rights.
In most cases, it is not unusual for a user stripped of Moderator rights to also receive a block of some duration.