Staff: So you want to be a moderator?


Dec 27, 2004
Jinx submitted a new Article:

Staff: So you want to be a moderator?

So you want to be a moderator?

I have been a moderator for a few years now for a community of a few hundred people. It really doesn’t matter the subject of the forum, because people are the same no matter where you are, or what the subject is. I had been part of this community before it became moderated, which was a bonus and meant that I could educate those that needed help, rather than just being there to see that nobody stepped over the line.

Over the years of me doing this, I have learned a great deal about myself, and online message boards. I want to help others that want to become moderators, so maybe they won’t have to go through such rough experiences as I have had to. So the following advice is just that. Advice. You can take it or leave it; agree with it or disagree; but it is my effort to educate those that might be getting into this for the first time, and are going in with blinders on.

First of all, check your ego at the door. Don’t think of yourself as policing the boards. Think of yourself as part of the administration staff, there to do a job. And moderating is a job, even if it doesn’t pay. It takes time, effort, and can sometimes be mentally draining.

Have clear communication between you and the board administrator. This is a vital part to you becoming an effective moderator. If the administrator is wishy-washy about the rules you are to enforce, and what exactly you are to moderate, then how can you do your job? You can’t. You will come off looking like a fool, and the administration looks terribly flimsy as well for lack of structure. So it is very vital that you discuss the rules you are to enforce as a moderator, as well as consequences, and also any policies on editing, deleting, and banning, if you are given access to it. You will be making your own judgment call when left to moderate, and if nobody else is around, you need to have a clear guide and structure to maintain the integrity of the boards. Your number one job as a moderator is to represent the site administrator and follow his guides, goals, and ideals as far as their message boards/forums are concerned.

Whether you want to or not, you’ll likely become intertwined with members of the community. You’ll find people you like, dislike, can’t stand, or just despise. As far as being a moderator goes, you have to treat everyone the same. This means someone you like gets the same treatment as someone you dislike. If you edit,...

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Junior mints are tasty
Jun 18, 2005
I throughly enjoyed this article. I intend to use it with proper credit for my own mods. Thanks and kudos to the author.


Apr 29, 2005
plubius said:
I throughly enjoyed this article. I intend to use it with proper credit for my own mods. Thanks and kudos to the author.




Feb 14, 2005
well said, i'm going to add it into my admin room with full credit. Thankyou


Mar 21, 2005
Excellent How-to! I plan to show it to my mods, with credit of course. :)