Some sites 'gamify' moderation, by showing leader boards of posts deleted, users destroyed etc. Some even highlight users who haven't deleted as many posts as the others.

Is this a good idea or does it encourage 'moderation-by-stats', moderators competing for high scores over quality moderation?


2 Answers 2


Moderators should not receive any "points" or "badgers" or whatever for destructive actions but for constructive ones.

Destructive actions are: deleted post, banned an user and so on.

Constructive actions are: reviewed a post, pinned a topic, handled a flag etc.

If you honor destructive actions, your moderators may enforce them but more than necessary. This will result in unintended moderation behaviour.

A fine example is the moderators badges list of any StackOverflow site. As you can see, no destructive action will gain any badge, but the constructive ones.

Compare it with your expection of a police man. Do you want any badge for a police man for "brought 25 people to prison?" I don't think so. You wouldn't, because you may fear that the bring people to prison who are innocent.

  • 1
    So is it good to gamify quality reviews, like passing audits?
    – bjb568
    Jul 29, 2014 at 22:47
  • No badgers? Awww. They're so furry.
    – Kevin
    Jul 29, 2014 at 22:48
  • At some times and places, policemen have gotten incentives, and it has an impact, generally not to the benefit of society. This isn't about “constructive” or “destructive” actions — incentives tend to be socially detrimental regardless of what is incentivized. Incentivize arrests, and people get arrested at the slightest suspicion of a misdemeanor. Incentivize the number of pending cases, and people are incited to report every slightest offense. Incentivize the proportion of solved cases, and people get stonewalled when they attempt to report a stolen bicycle. Jul 30, 2014 at 1:06

I would say no, gamifying moderation is not a good idea. Someone who is filling the duty of a moderator should not care about how many posts are deleted or how many users they ban or delete. That is not the purpose of moderation. Their only care should be that they are fulfilling the commitment to the site and the community they moderate.

Deleting posts and banning users is the job of the moderator and it needs to be done for the good of the site. If a moderator came to worry too much about the "stats" of moderation they may try to seek to increase their leaderboard rankings. They may then start making questionable decisions, to inflate their stats.

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