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Forum Moderation and Escalation Guidelines

Moderation Guidelines

Congratulations and thank you for becoming a Moderator! To make it a fun and rewarding experience for you and other community members, please read these time-tested guidelines for moderating that we have collected.


(For general guidelines on how to use the Mozilla Support Forums please check our Forum Rules and Guidelines.)


We have two types of Moderator roles in our community:


Site Moderators

The role of a Site Moderator is to make sure that all forums across the whole site are used in accordance with our Community Guidelines.

Support Forum Moderators

The role of a Forum Moderator is to make sure that a Support Forum is used in accordance with our Forum Rules and Guidelines.


Both roles are very important and all active Moderators ensure that the community members, be they contributors or users looking for help, communicate and interact with each other through the site in a civilised and cultured manner.

Editing inappropriate content

The following content is considered inappropriate:

  • foul language
  • personal attacks
  • spam links
  • sensitive information (personal info, email addresses, phone numbers, account passwords, etc.)
  • links to executable files


Posts with inappropriate content should be moved to the Abuse Reports board in the Moderator Forum. Post a new comment to explain that inappropriate content has been removed as per Forum Rules and Guidelines. When you post that new comment, the original poster will receive a notification email.

Moving threads

If a thread has landed in the wrong product or language forum, Moderators should move it to the appropriate forum (i.e. a Portuguese question in the English forum or a Firefox OS question in the Firefox Desktop forum). Moderators can move threads by following these steps:


Moving topics, messages and replies is possible, so you do not need to lock and create a new thread. Now, you can move all three to start a new thread, locking the previous one is optional.

  • Move a topic only if it belongs in a different board; it will become more visible somewhere else. This includes subtopics that are no longer relevant to the current discussion or the board where they were posted
  • Move a message to the Abuse Reports board in the Moderator Forum if it does not follow the Forum Rules and Guidelines.
  • Remember to send a private message to the original author of the message or topic to explain why it was (re)moved.


Floating topics

This feature brings the topic to the top of the board. There are two options:

  • ‘float a topic’ - floating a topic is something an individual user can use to “stick” a topic at the top of a board for themselves only.
  • ‘float a topic for all users’ - this is for Admins/Moderators only, and is similar to making a thread “sticky” - it will be displayed at the top and in chronological order (so, it will be visible twice) Use this option when:
  • There is an announcement
  • There is a bug fix
  • There is a need for user feedback

Banning a user account

  • Moderators can deactivate accounts that are clearly used for spam purposes.
  • Moderators should report in the Moderator Forum when deactivating any account for reasons other than spam.
  • Banning a user is always a last resort! Please do not ban users unless there are very good reasons for it:
    • [Priority 1]: The user is posting illegal, extremely inappropriate content and/or spamming the forum (this usually means it’s a bot account)
    • [Priority 2]: The user needs to be banned temporarily for abusing kudos, they need to calm down, etc. - use your best judgement in such cases and always inform other Moderators through the Moderator Forum about this. Such users should be set to be able t o“read only” for all the forums.
  • Steps to moderating a user if they go against any of the Guidelines:
    • 1st: Notify the user to change (fix) the problematic content and create a report in the Abuse report Forum.
    • 2nd: Edit the content if they do not.
    • 3rd: Lock all of their content if the misbehaviour continues.
    • 4th: Move the offending content to the private Moderator Forum, and start a discussion about banning them.
  • How to Ban: Go to the user's profile and click "Ban User". You can also do this from the "Options" section of the offending message. Be sure to include the explanation in the "Ban Criteria" section (Admin) or in the Abuse Report (Moderators)

Marking threads as "Solved" or “Best Answer”

Moderators can mark threads as solved when the original poster (OP) clearly indicates his problem is solved (through phrases such as "thank you, problem fixed now" or "ok, it looks like it worked", etc.).

  • We will not mark as solved threads which appear to be solved and probably are but where the OP did not make any comment. <insert link to Evaluating a Solution>

Locking and deleting threads

You can lock threads or remove them completely according to the following guidelines:

  1. Locking threads, Blocking New Replies
  • Questions that are not about subjects covered in the support forum as defined in Forum Rules and Guidelines should be tagged as “off-topic”, responded to, and be set to not accept any new replies.
  • Duplicate threads should be completely locked after posting a link to the original thread.
  • Threads that are spam, duplicates or no longer relevant will be reported to you by other users. It will be up to you to decide whether to lock such a thread or not. If you are in doubt, ask other Moderators in the Moderator Forum.
  • If an unsolved Support Forum thread is getting new replies and the original poster hasn't replied in the thread for some time, post a new comment encouraging users with similar issues should post a new question (refer to Forum Rules and Guidelines).
    • Ask the original poster (OP) if they have resolved the issue or if they still need help.
    • Do NOT lock the thread, since the OP may still need help.

Moderators who lock a thread should always post a new comment to explain that the thread has been closed to further replies, and include the reason why this happened (refer to Forum Rules and Guidelines).

  1. Deleting threads - please do NOT remove threads; instead, move them to the private Moderator Forum (into the Abuse Reports section), and when you are done moderating the content there, move it over to the Archived Content section.
  • In general, only spam posts in discussion forums should be moved to the “Abuse Reports” board.
  • Moderators should move the entire thread if it contains only personal attacks or profanity, and request a ban for any user who posts multiple posts like that (or ask an Admin if in doubt).
    • Moderators will post a new reply explaining that an inappropriate post (as defined in Forum Rules and Guidelines) has been deleted before removing the post/thread, so that it goes out as an email.
    • Moderators should also leave a note in the Moderator Forum that they removed a particular non-spam post.

Marking Support Forum posts as spam

Moderators should use the “Mark as spam” button for support questions or replies in the Support Forum, rather than deleting those posts. Posts marked as spam will no longer be viewable except by Moderators, do not appear in Mozilla Support search results, and are not indexed by search engines. This effectively removes spam posts from the Support Forum.


What should I do if I encounter a problem that is not covered by these guidelines?


Please report anything that is not currently covered in these guidelines in the Moderator Forum. This also applies to situations when you are in doubt whether a certain action should be taken.


Users or fellow contributors that are misbehaving/making bad suggestions should also be reported in the Moderator Forum, depending on how delicate/severe the situation is.


If at any point you feel that anything should be reported to someone from Mozilla only (and

not shared with other Moderators), please contact any of the Admins as soon as you can.


Escalation Guidelines

For Support Forum Moderators


Sometimes a question may need more attention and may take more time to answer. Escalations are put in place in order to help resolve these more difficult questions. Currently, there are two types of escalations in the forum.

Manual Escalations

Escalated by a Moderator, contributor, or a user when:

  • a question needs more attention
  • there are raised concerns
  • the question is getting a lot of attention
  • there are multiple questions within a single thread
  • the question could use the experience and expertise of a Top Level Contributor

If you don’t know whether you should escalate, please contact an Admin or another Support Forum Moderator

If you want to answer escalated support questions


Automatic Escalations

Automatic escalations happen when the system detects the use of a specific phrase within a message. Such message is automatically moved into the escalation pipeline for Moderators to work on.

How to escalate:

Abuse Reports

  • Abuse reports are created if a keyword is detected in a thread, as well as when a user clicks the “Escalate” button, if it is available.


Escalating a Support Question

  • Please add the appropriate escalation label to the topic and make sure that you are subscribed to this topic to receive updates.
  • Please make sure that there is enough information (including troubleshooting information and steps already suggested) - if not, please mention this in the original thread and request the information that is needed from the poster(s).
  • Please add a message or a Common Response that helps the Question Owner to know that it has been escalated and that there is a 72 hour period (at most) for a response.
  • Respond using the following (or similar) template:

“Your issue seems a bit more complicated and requires more investigation. We are currently looking into it and we will get back to you with more details as soon as it is possible. Please understand that we cannot offer you a guaranteed time of resolution for your issue at this moment. Thank you for your understanding.”


This is an example message contributors can use to reply to the thread before escalating it further, so the user asking the question is aware that we are looking into it.

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Version History
Revision #:
4 of 6
Last update:
‎02-02-2017 02:07 PM
Updated by: