A moderator seems to be shadowing me, down voting me within minutes of my posting an answer, and making inappropriate comments, and actions that are totally harassing me. Yeah, I'm pissed off.

I voluntarily contribute my time to help out here on AskUbuntu, and all I get from him is ****.

As far as the yearly numbers say, I'm the FOURTH highest contributor here on AskUbuntu. My answer accept rate is high.

Latest example: USB bug which locks the kernel

Within 3 minutes of posting my answer, the moderator down voted it, without leaving a comment as to who/why.

Then says "You know why I've downvoted you (and we've discussed the core problem with these types of posts MANY times before)". I have no idea what he's referring to.

This may be a poor example, but this treatment by the moderator is really frustrating me.

  • @Pilot6 As you can see by the quote in the answer, he said so himself.
    – heynnema
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 17:49
  • 3
    I think he means these "incomplete answers" and suggestions to upgrade BIOS to everyone.
    – Pilot6
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 17:49
  • 1
    Anyway it wasn't offensive. There is noting wrong in downvoting. And the vote looks to be removed.
    – Pilot6
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 17:50
  • @Pilot6 I added the "incomplete answer" line AFTER the down vote and AFTER his comment. And if BIOS updates didn't help fix many user's problems, I wouldn't continue to check/recommend them.
    – heynnema
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 17:50
  • @Pilot6 The down vote was removed by some other user up voting my answer.
    – heynnema
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 17:51
  • @Pilot6 As I mention, I may cite a poor example... but his harassment is a continuing story.
    – heynnema
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 17:53
  • No, as you can see by clicking the number, there is no downvote now. It has been removed.
    – Pilot6
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 17:53
  • @Pilot6 Ah yes, I see it's been removed now. It wasn't earlier.
    – heynnema
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 17:55
  • 6
    It is true there was a downvote when you first posted this, I did see it, it is strange it was removed because I do see what he is saying about partial answers that may or may not one day be full answers. I don't see any evidence of harassment on your answers, you get very few downvotes. This might be better served to discuss the validity of work in progress style answers, rather than pick a fight.
    – Mark Kirby
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 18:10
  • @MarkKirby Thanks for your comment. I really don't want to pick any fights. However, this has been going on for quite some time, and his behaviour has got to change. He's a moderator, and not supposed to be a bully. I only cite the most recent occurrence. I added the "incomplete answer" line after the down vote, and after his comment, thinking that might satisfy him. It's since been removed.
    – heynnema
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 18:16
  • 3
    OK bully is a strong word. As a normal user I can't see votes or deleted comments on posts so really can't say if anything has gone on between you two. Perhaps you just want to defame him here but if you want to take it further all I can do is refer you here meta.stackexchange.com/questions/336173/… if it is that bad staff will see and take action.
    – Mark Kirby
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 18:26
  • @MarkKirby I normally don't cite names, or call people bullies, as I usually have more tact... but as I mention... this has been going on for quite some time... and my feelings are that I'm being harassed/bullied. I'll check your link. Thanks.
    – heynnema
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 18:30

1 Answer 1


This sort of post calling out a moderator is inappropriate here on Meta. It's bordering on outright rude. If you believe that a moderator is abusing their abilities, you have a few options - What recourse do I have if I believe a moderator has abused their privileges?

Yes, one of the options here is to go to meta to discuss the issue but the focus in any complaint should be on the actions, not the person who took them. Calling out anyone on our sites publicly as "harassing" you and calling them a "bully" is not ok, whether the user is a moderator or not. Questions raised on meta should be done politely and openly - remember, moderators are often well-liked and their work is often under-appreciated. Trying to destroy their reputation in this way is more likely to make people defensive than to make them open to listening to your concerns.

Other options are to raise a flag on one of the posts where this has happened. Our moderators know that complaints about their own actions in flags should be left to others on their team, so you should feel safe in knowing that someone other than the moderator you're struggling to work well with will review the situation. If you feel you need to give more information, ask to talk with a mod privately in chat.

If you don't feel you can follow one of these options, I invite you to use the contact form to reach out to the Community Managers (like myself) to review the situation. As with the meta post, focus on the actions of the moderator and give any examples you have. Avoid just calling names with no specific evidence or examples of cases.

As to your complaints, since you've raised them here and I'd like to respond to them at least somewhat, I've looked into your concerns and I see no evidence of targeted downvoting at all. I've also looked at comments on your posts and I similarly see no evidence of targeted commenting. It might be helpful to remember that, as an avid user - particularly one with so much reputation - you're likely creating far more content than other users are. Similarly, moderators are participating and commenting on many more posts than the average user.

Having someone point out that your content needs improvement is rarely an enjoyable experience, particularly if you feel like an expert in a subject and the point being made is one you feel you should have remembered yourself. For some people, they can easily accept the guidance or correction and for myself it takes a bit of work to accept that an error was made... I'm a bit of a perfectionist.

What I do see here is a disagreement between very active users about when an answer should be posted in the first place. There are times that questions are short on info - the user doesn't include important details and those need to be gotten from them before a definite answer can be given. Often, comments should be left to request these details from the asker and, if they're not provided, closing the question may be the best course of action until such time that they are.

Sometimes people will - through their experience with the subject - make jumps that others can't see. Perhaps they've seen the same issue with a specific version of a software so, even though it's not explained in the post, they think it's a safe bet to make an assumption before that information is included. If they're correct, they can cash in... but if they're not, they may be misleading the asker and adding confusion, particularly if the answer is never removed.

In general, my recommendation - unless you're absolutely certain rather than guessing - is to ask clarifying questions in the comments and wait to answer until you have the full picture of the situation. At the very least, it's best to put a caveat on your answer if you do choose to write one, something like:

Based on your question and having run into similar situations, I'm guessing that you're trying to herd kittens into a barn. While you don't say this specifically, I'm going to write this answer under that assumption. If you're instead trying to herd geese into a pond, this answer won't work, so please clarify your question and I'll update or remove my answer.

This shows later readers that your answer may not work in all cases, only the cases involving kittens and barns. Hopefully the asker confirms your hunch and everyone wins! But be prepared for it to be wrong, too.

What the policy is here on AU for this is not mine to define. That's up to the community. Based on Thomas' comment, I'm guessing the mods at least lean towards only answering once the question is complete because of the downsides I've mentioned above (and others I'm failing to remember at the moment). So, if y'all haven't had this discussion yet, have it - and I hope that once it's had, y'all can adjust your expectations as appropriate.

  • 2
    Thank you for your engagement, your edits, and your answer.
    – heynnema
    Commented Nov 9, 2020 at 20:43

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