Trust Level 4 Promotion by a Community Election Poll?

So, the Gimkit Forum has been discussing something about Trust Level 4 via elections, and also about if trust level 4 could be needed in the forum:
The topic above is archived and unlisted, please note.

I had put:

Maybe a few active people can be elected, and there could be applications.

The problem with that forum was that nobody is currently TL4. The moderators in that forum are inactive. This could lead to unneeded problems and drama that nobody would want there. So this brings me a feature idea:

This would be to elect trust level 4 (leaders) through an election poll. In the official trust levels page, it says TL4 could be granted this way:

  • (Possibly via a to-be-developed election system in the future)

The problem is that it has been many years and there has yet to be no election system.

So, what do you think? Would TL4 elections be a good idea?

This has been discussed a few times but nobody has really gotten an idea yet. I feel as though relying on the community to choose our leader(s) would be a good idea.

Also, I feel as though some forums would not want this feature, so there could be a setting to turn this off as well. Do note I have shared this with the forum I am sharing this to. I am making these additional notes as these are crucial to this feature.


If that instance staff is up for it, I would love to see it happening and the outcomes for it in a few months.

Discourse should have all the tools you need to run this as an experiment.

  • Groups that allow anyone to join, used as a list of runners for the TL4 promotion

  • Polls to vote on who gets promoted.


I ran an election on a forum I manage to fill out the moderator team. It was a fairly simple process that worked great! I don’t see why it couldn’t be used for TL4 instead. (Probably a good idea to test with the Leader status before jumping to moderators, but we don’t really use TL4 formally.) Here’s how it worked:

  1. I called for nominations via private message. I wanted to screen nominees without embarrassing anyone publicly. But I think a public process would be workable too. A bit later I clarified the process based on feedback.
  2. After I gathered nominees and vetted them, I announced the election with a poll that
    • limited voting to TL2 and above (groups=trust_level_2,trust_level_3,trust_level_4),
    • showed results only to staff (results=staff_only),
    • allowed people to vote up to the number of moderator slots available (type=multiple min=1 max=2 for two slots) and
    • set the poll close date to the end of the election (close=2022-09-23T23:59:00.000Z).
  3. After the election closed, I appointed the top vote-getters to the open slots. (I had two slots, so the top two candidates became moderators.)

I’d have preferred some sort of ranked-choice voting system, but the simple poll worked well enough in this case. In the future I’d like to run elections that are a little more open (public nominations and results, for instance), but everyone felt more comfortable for the first election when I kept a few safety valves in reach.

Other than ranked-choice votes, I don’t think Discourse needs to add a whole lot to make an excellent democratic system. It was a manual process for us, but not particularly hard.

Oooh! That’s an interesting idea. It could also work to have a group that the requires staff to approve, if that sort of gatekeeping seems like a good idea.


This old broken plugin could likely be retooled.


Two thoughts at the moment.

  1. Consider excluding users who have not posted to the site in the last 90 days or such.
  2. If there are users that only use the site via email, can they vote? I have not tried to use voting from email and am not even sure if it is possible.

When will this be added? As our forum needs it bad, we have low moderation and the moderators won’t promote people to TL4, so this would be wonderful


Hi @idontexist, :wave: welcome to Discourse Meta :slight_smile:
I moved your post over to a topic that already exists about this feature.


Oh, my bad :man_facepalming:
Thanks for fixing :wrench: it!
So, what’s the answer? I couldn’t find it.


I think the general idea is “not yet”, though I suspect if it gets a lot of interest it’ll be looked at more closely.


This plugin is broken. But maybe if your community/site is able to maybe find it. Someone may look into getting it working again with your needs in mind

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Implementing elections in the software is blocked on a lack of a coherent design, and that’s mostly due to a lack of good experience reports from forums doing it by hand, especially in an iterated fashion.

The best thing to do is for your forum to run an election by hand and write a report about the process here on Meta.