Certain close votes are publicly available, such as in the "closed by" box on the question itself, and in the history tab of the new review tool. However, I have been unable to find a way to view that information in aggregate for a specific person, like the votes tab people can see on their own profile.

Is there an easy way to view that information in aggregate, perhaps with a data query, even if it's only the votes that are already publicly viewable?

The reason I ask is that I repeatedly see the same few names pop up making decisions to close that I disagree with. While I respect the difference of opinion, and have successfully worked within the edit and reopen system when I feel strongly about a question, I would be uncomfortable giving those people the power to close questions with one vote, should they choose to run for moderator.

In summary, I intend to base my vote for moderator largely on his or her voting record. I hope to encourage others to do the same, and would like an easier way to retrieve that information.

If there isn't an easy way to get it, maybe some candidates would like to voluntarily post a couple months' worth of their close votes here, perhaps with some commentary to put the votes in context?

  • Hm, this query doesn't work anymore, I suspect a schema change.
    – yannis
    Feb 20, 2013 at 12:06
  • @YannisRizos That query never worked.... the UserId is not shown on any vote type except Favorites and Bounties.
    – Rachel
    Feb 20, 2013 at 13:04
  • But I haven't even put my name in the hat yet! Should I consider this a warning shot across the bow of my ship? ;-)
    – user53019
    Feb 20, 2013 at 15:05
  • 1
    +1. This site is infamous for being over-moderated. It's gotten a bit better recently, but I certainly would not want to vote to make it worse again by giving someone with an itchy trigger finger the power to unilaterally close questions. Feb 24, 2013 at 1:42

2 Answers 2


Although a user's Close/Reopen votes aren't displayed in Data.SE, the Post History record is public, and you can parse the line saying who closed the post to get a list of a user's closed posts.

You can use this Data.SE query that Tim Stone shared to look at posts that a user has successfully closed. It should be noted that this does not include votes on deleted posts, nor does it include close votes that have expired or did not result in the question getting closed.

I've also played around with that query a bit and found you can fairly easily get a list of the Top Close Voters and Top Reopen Voters, although those queries take a bit longer to run and I would not recommend running them on a larger site like SO.

Both these queries are currently set to only show votes since 2012, but you can change the date at the top if you want to look at a larger date range. Also, the same restrictions apply as the first query: it only includes non-deleted posts, and only contains close/reopen votes that resulted in the question successfully getting closed or reopened.

On a related note, since it's fairly trivial to view a user's successful close/reopen vote history, I have a MSO proposal to show successful Close/Reopen votes in Data.SE that would make queries like this easier to run and more efficient.

  • 2
    I made the top ten for close voters, 42 more and I'll tie with Mark Trapp!! More seriously, very good queries that you put together there. Thanks for doing that!
    – user53019
    Feb 20, 2013 at 15:08
  • Interesting queries. I did't think I voted to reopen that much stuff!
    – ChrisF Mod
    Feb 21, 2013 at 9:42
  • @ChrisF It's not hard to get into the list of the top Reopen Voters since there are easily 10-20 questions that get closed for every 1 that gets reopened. The top Close Voter since 2012 has closed 1584 questions, while the top Reopen Voter since 2012 is at 85 (and is no longer a member of the site). I think it's unfortunate that so many users are willing to close, but very few are willing to help edit and reopen.
    – Rachel
    Feb 21, 2013 at 18:03

Close votes are not public, at least not until they've actually resulted in a post being closed.

However, reviews are public - and if a candidate participates in reviewing questions, the results can give you a much broader picture of how he'll likely behave as a moderator.

Remember, the posts being reviewed aren't necessarily those that the candidates have any specific interest in; rather, they've been identified by someone else on the site (or by the system itself) as potentially problematic, and presented to the reviewer for a decision. This is pretty close to what moderators find themselves doing much of the time, and thus a very good way to gauge their aptitude for the job.

Each candidate's review history will be linked to from their nomination following the next build.

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