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Often I’m asked the question: “who are the moderators of the community and what is their role?” Community members interact with moderators on multiple occasions including:

  • when a member posts content that is pending moderation review
  • After the content is already published and the moderator is asking for more details or provides guidance
  • In just a casual conversation in the community.

In those cases, I’m often asked who are the moderators, what do they do, how are they chosen. Some also ask how they can become a moderator. In this blog post, I will try to answer all of these questions. At also show appreciation and gratitude to those who are taking this leadership role in the community.

Moderator’s Role

Moderators are assigned to tags/topics that reflect their area of expertise. They monitor the activity and content published under these tags. Moderators are expected to help foster good content and community spirit while following the Rules of Engagement (ROE). These duties are ongoing and include the following:

  • Content quality- Moderators are required to be topic and subject matter experts and leaders in their area. This enables them to ensure accuracy of content either posted in their tags or submitted for review prior to becoming public.

 

  • Community spirit- What builds a community is not just the content that is being created in it but the people behind it. The moderator ensures and fosters the sense of community by making sure everyone feels comfortable and welcome to collaborate and participate in the community.

 

  • Rules of engagement (ROE)- The ROE are members’ and moderators’ compass around the community and clarify what is allowed and not allowed when it comes to community behavior and conduct. The ROE’s primary goal is not to enable “policing” of community members but to enable the virtual environment we believe provides the best user experience for everyone.

 

Prerequisites for assigning new moderators include the following:

 

  • Knowledgeable/topic experts- A moderator is expected to ensure that content that is published with their tags is accurate and adds value for other community members. He or she is required to be an expert in his or her assigned field.

 

  • Community enthusiasm- A real moderator needs to be visible to the community to fulfill their role. That means that a moderator is expected to be active (prior to becoming a moderator) in the community either by posting blogs, attending to and answering questions.

 

  • Need for new moderators- Before we recruit new moderators we want to make sure there is a real need for a moderator in a specific tag. We always appreciate help, however, sometimes having too many people active in one tag can lead to confusion and misalignment.

 

A more detailed explanation of what is required of moderators’ candidates will be communicated to moderation applicants.

So now you probably ask yourself, the moderators support the users but who supports the moderators? That is the role of the global moderators who consist of the SAP Community Experience team. The global moderators make sure that the moderators have all the tools that they need to moderate, overlook the entire moderation operation, and take action when needed and also mediate between moderators and users when needed.

Our global moderators are: Gali Kling Schneider Ingolf Bayer Audrey Stevenson Mynyna Chau David Metser Jamie Cantrell Jerry Janda Sajid Amir Brian Bernard Catherine LaCroix Moshe Naveh

 

I will wrap up this post by answering some related FAQs:

  1. How can you apply to become a moderator?

 

Please contact scnmoderators@sap.com  and mention which tag you would like to moderate along with a link to your community profile.

 

  1. How do I know who are the moderators for my tag?

 

Please visit the topic page that is associated with your tag.

 

  1. How do I contact a moderator?

 

In Q&A you would usually reply to a moderator posting you an editorial comment. You can recognize these commments when you see the lock sign:

All replies to editorial comments are restricted to moderators and the original author of the question.

In any other cases where you need moderation assistance please approach scnmoderators@sap.com and we will connect you with the relevant moderator.

In Blogs please use the editorial comments, which are accessible in the edit mode of the blog at the bottom of the screen.

You can learn more about our moderators by reading our Moderator spotlights interviews.

I want to use this opportunity to thank our dear moderators for their diligent support and for the resources they invest in the community.

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2 Comments

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  1. Veselina Peykova

    A minor clarification on point 3 How do I contact a moderator:

    As far as I know, non-moderator users do not have the option to set the viewability setting of a question, answer or comment. The only way that I know of to create a comment, visible to moderators, is to reply directly to a comment which was already with such restricted viewability setting. I think it could be distinguished by a lock icon, but I could not find examples. Maybe it will be a good idea to add such screenshot in the blog and avoid confusion?

    Anyway, originally I intended to post an excerpt from another forum’s rules, which sums up in a few words what moderation means or what it should be:

    Moderators have special authority; they are responsible for this forum. But so are you. With your help, moderators can be community facilitators, not just janitors or police.

    (3) 

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