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Since begin of May only three non-mod users reviewed any tasks in the Close Votes Review Queue. Add two or three users that cast close votes outside the queues and another very small number of users that use flags to indicate the need to close a question. While I would like to express my gratitude to those users I would kindly like to request (read: urge) the rest of the community (specifically 3k+ users) to consider visiting the review queues and cast close votes or vote to leave open. Your action helps to keep the site on track and defines the boundaries of the kind of question we (the community) deem fit for our particular corner of StackExchange.

Right now there are just 63 items in the queue waiting to be reviewed. So the task is far from being insurmountable for the thirtyeight 3k+ rep users, even though that number includes the four elected moderators and unfortunately quite a number of inactive users.

Please note that it takes 5 close votes to reach the closing threshold and that close votes age away. Since moderator votes are binding, i.e. a vote will reach the threshold and take effect immediately if a single moderator casts a vote, we moderators would rather not cast close votes unless absolutely necessary:

The system is not intended, I think, so that sites are effectively maintained by one or two all powerful figures -- that is not what the role of moderator is supposed to be [..]

Right now two of us moderators keep visiting the queue and vote to close if an item has collected at least two or three community votes. We also skip quite a large number of reviews to leave those up you, the users, because, again, that is how the system is supposed to work. It will, however, work only with your sustained support. Please help us.

Some more insight on community votes and moderator action with respect to close votes:

Please cast your close / leave-open / re-open votes and visit the review queues... and while you're at it, please consider using all the other tools of community moderation, including up-/downvotes, flags, comments, etc.

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    I might add that casting upvotes for the lowly user under 3k would help increase the number of potential reviewers. Everyone has 40 votes per day to sprinkle among the worthy. :) – Brick Jun 6 at 14:10
  • @brick that is true. We have discussed it on Meta before... but you're right to point it out. It’s only through voting that a class of editors, closers, and moderators can emerge to help run and govern the site. – Ghanima Jun 6 at 14:24
  • Why do downvotes on Answers penalise the user who downvotes? Surely this discourages people from exercising the option to note "This Answer is not helpful" which is what the downvote means. I am reluctant to downvote Answers, because I know some of my views do not seem to be shared by the community, and downvoting seems to viewed by some as a personal criticism, but I wonder why others do not flag poor Answers. – Milliways Jun 7 at 5:02
  • @Milliways I think that question has been discussed on meta.stackexchange before. If you want a change that would be the place to go... but you're right that both up und down voting got its merrits and should be used to indicate either good or less helpful Q's and A's. – Ghanima Jun 7 at 6:33
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    @Milliways You big point users need to lead the way! But you do get your points back if the answer is subsequently deleted. Many, but not all, users will delete there downvoted Q/A if they get enough negative attention. – Brick Jun 10 at 15:17
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While I appreciate the mods' discretion, my personal feeling is that this is becoming a real problem for quality on the site and, until there's more participation, I'd endorse the idea of the mods being more, uhm, aggressive on casting their close vote.

I do a lot of the "First Post" and "Late Answer" reviews because I can access them. There are a lot of really poor or blatantly off-topic questions coming in that stay open too long and then attract correspondingly bad or off-topic answers before they are closed.

Case in point from right now: I have no clue what to do with my RPi 3B+ That's not unique or maybe even the best example. It just happens to have been in the queue recently and then got several questionable answers.

  • Rest assured that we will not hesistate to cast binding votes on stuff that is blatantly off-topic or of very low quality... if we notice it or are made aware of it. That being said please continue to use flags to indicate the need to close or other moderator attention. I notice your spotless flag history. There is of course a catch, flagging as "off-topic" sends the question to the review queue not directly to a moderator's attention. Feel free to use "in need of moderator intervention" where appropriate if you think something deserves a more immediate action. – Ghanima Jun 6 at 15:25
  • The thing with until there's more participation is: in Dec '15 there have been 14 users, 20 in June '16. Now there are 38. The percieved amount of participation did not change that much. – Ghanima Jun 6 at 15:31

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