Do moderators have a term limit after which they must retire?

Do we re-elect every moderator after a certain period of time?

When are people eligible to become moderators?

1 Answer 1


Moderators elected on Stack Exchange have the same term as the Pope: for life. They also have the option of resigning.

New moderators are elected as needed, which usually means when there are too many flags for existing moderators to comfortably handle. There's no fixed schedule, but we usually check with them around the time of a site's graduation anniversary. See also: Can we have more moderators?

You can read about past elections and see the eligibility requirements on a nomination tab.

  • 1
    Pope Mason. Wow... :) So, if we have contemporaneous mods, is Pope Starman, Pope Caleb, Pope Eagle, or Pope Stratton the anti-pope? Sep 11, 2014 at 13:30
  • Term limits are different than term-length. All moderators are up for re-election on an annual basis, no?
    – Flimzy
    Sep 11, 2014 at 23:43
  • 1
    @Flimzy: Yes and no. ;-) I was sloppy in my phrasing (fixed now) and sitting mods never face re-election. The reasoning behind it is that mods make unpopular decisions, so we don't want them to spend all their time canvassing for votes. Sep 11, 2014 at 23:49
  • Is that a recent change?
    – Flimzy
    Sep 11, 2014 at 23:51
  • @Affable Geek: Maybe "Cardinal" would have been a better choice. But I have no idea if their terms are for life or even how they get put in office. ;-) Sep 11, 2014 at 23:59
  • @Flimzy: It's been this way as long as I've been around. Otherwise we'd have the hardest time holding an election on Stack Overflow. Sep 12, 2014 at 0:01

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