The moderation results for 2019 has just been published on 2019: a year in moderation.

Comparing the data for this year with the data for last year, the difference is the following.

  • Users suspended²: +11
  • Users destroyed: +624
  • Users deleted: +54
  • Users contacted: -3
  • Tasks reviewed⁴
    • Suggested Edit queue: -1534
    • Reopen Vote queue: -172
    • Low Quality Posts queue: -237
    • Late Answer queue: -366
    • First Post queue: -794
    • Close Votes queue: +1236
  • Tags merged: -84
  • Revisions redacted: -13
  • Questions reopened: -45
  • Questions protected: -5
  • Questions merged: -4
  • Questions flagged⁵: -7559
  • Questions closed: -112
  • Question flags handled⁵: -7559
  • Posts unlocked: +3
  • Posts undeleted: -47
  • Posts locked: -1322
  • Posts deleted⁶: -1762
  • Posts bumped: -114
  • Escalations to the Community Manager team: +14
  • Comments undeleted: +2
  • Comments flagged: +1574
  • Comments deleted⁷: +599
  • Comment flags handled: +1574
  • Bounties canceled: +4
  • Answers flagged: -522
  • Answer flags handled: -522
  • Comments on a post moved to chat: -18


¹ "Community" here refers both to the membership of Drupal Answers without diamonds next to their names, and to the automated systems otherwise known as user #-1.

² The system will suspend users under three circumstances: when a user is recreated after being previously suspended, when a user is recreated after being destroyed for spam or abuse, and when a network-wide suspension is in effect on an account.

³ A "destroyed" user is deleted along with all that they had posted: questions, answers, comments. It's generally used as an expedient way of getting rid of spam.

⁴ This counts every review that was submitted (not skipped). The 2 suggested edits reviews needed to approve an edit would count as 2; the goal is to indicate the frequency of moderation actions. This also applies to flags, etc.

⁵ Includes close flags (but not close or reopen votes).

⁶ This ignores numerous deletions that happen automatically in response to some other action.

⁷ This includes comments deleted by their own authors (which also account for some number of handled comment flags).

What can we conclude from these data?

  1. There has been less activity than last year (in general).
  2. A lot more users have been (suspended/destroyed/deleted).
  3. There has been a lot more closed posts and comments.

Is this fine, or should we be concerned about it?

The data have been calculated based on the sum of the Moderator and Community results.


1 Answer 1


Some thoughts. And also keep in mind, that because of geolocation, I think I see fewer flags which may bias my thoughts (others are a few timezones ahead of me, so see the flags when I am sleeping). Also keep in mind, that I am more of a hands off moderator; nearly everything I do is flag-driven. I want the rest of the community to help curate the site (that said, I am 100% in favor of lowering the close/reopen thresholds for smaller sites, but that idea has been rejected several times).

Don't read too much into the destroyed users metric. They are nearly all spammers. But, since Charcoal / SmokeDetector came into being with a good user base, diamond moderators hardly see spam flags anymore, so fewer users get destroyed. As part of my behind-the-scenes duties, I would destroy spammers after the fact, but this doesn't help much anymore, and I got out of the habit.

We have a few users who actively curate comments, and will flag for either general or individual cleanups. I suspect that is the reason for the uptick in comment flags. I handle very, very few rude/offensive comments.

I think that questions and answers are down in general (as well as quality), but I don't know when this started. Someone would have to do a SEDE query to count questions, answers, and comments for a fair comparison against 2018. I don't know what to think about this. I think it may be from IRC dying off and the Drupal Slack (and other realtime channels) taking off, so people aren't turning here first.

Overall, moderating this site is easy. We don't get a lot of hard flags, and we have a good user base and hardly have to deal with the "problem users" that others sites are plagued with.


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