What do you believe is the biggest issue currently facing WPA? How do you plan to handle
Visibility. A lot of people looking for answers don't really know where to turn. They'll troll the WP.org support forums, constantly bumping their own questions, drop notes on IRC, ping the hackers list, or just hope that the Google gods will return something in response to their question. This is where we shine - SE sites can outscore anything on Google if the content is of a high enough quality.
We need to make sure questions and answers both are well-written and well supported. I'll handle this by example and by working with the community to hold up a high standard.
Should we be afraid you'll burn out or become even more fanatic?
Nope. I was a fan of this idea when it was still an "idea" floating around the hackers list and I plan to be here for a while. As far as becoming more fanatic, I don't see that as a negative thing :-)
How do you expect becoming a moderator will change or influence the way you use WPA?
I think I'll still use it just as frequently. I usually check in a couple of times a day to see what's going on. More frequently in my off-hours to answer longer issues and lend support where needed.
Will you have the time to spend moderating the site? How much time do you think you'll spend modding?
I try to spend at least 10-15 minutes a day checking mod flags. I doubt that will change unless the flagging frequency goes up.
What is it of being a moderator that appeals to you? You will be, for many users, the overlords of the site, and will have to make decisions on behalf of the community. Is it so you can show people you have a pointy diamond next to your name, to give back to the community, because you really, really like power, or something else?
I don't have as much time to contribute to core as I wish I did, and I've given up on being able to offer any kind of meaningful support in the WP.org forums or on the hackers list. But I still want to give back and contribute to the community at large. That's why I came here in the first place.
And you've got to admit, the little diamond thing is pretty nifty :-)
What are your opinions on the various WordPress versioning tags? Do you feel they benefit the site and make it easier to use?
I think they have some marginal significance. People are still using 3.0.5 on their sites and have issue specific to that version. Most have upgraded to 3.1 and have issues that don't apply to legacy sites. Others break the rules and run 3.2-bleeding on their production sites and will have questions or concerns that make no sense to the rest of us. In those three cases - current version, previous version, and development - versioning tags make sense. But if people start tagging things as 2.8 and asking questions I think I'd lose it.
What's your stance on duplicates and how should they be handled?
Duplicate questions should be merged if possible. Many times one variation of the question gets a couple of great answers while the other gets no feedback at all ... but Google (and lost WordPress users) will find their way to both. If they can be merged, they should be.
Duplicate tags/topics should use synonyms to prevent confusion and help people find the best answer as quickly as possible.
Do you feel it is the role of a moderator to promote the site? How would you promote WPA to the wider WordPress community?
I ask questions, I offer bounties, and I promote individual questions on Twitter and through my own blog. A lot of techies follow me online, so it gets us some additional visibility. I also take the time to track down loose WordPress questions on Stack Overflow to help new users find the site and the community.
How do you feel that WPA fits in with the overall WordPress ecology?
I'd say it sits alongside the official WP.org forums as a great channel for user support. It's easier to share code (without resorting to pastebins) but not quite powerful enough for patching core (i.e. Trac). WPA is a key element of the overall WordPress community in that it helps new users easily track down issues and write code snippets, and is very discoverable in terms of Google searches.
How will you deal with having a binding close vote?
Unless the question is blatantly off-topic (i.e. "How do I do XXX with Drupal") I will add a comment with my concerns and suggest the question either be changed or closed if enough people agree. If at least 2 or 3 other high-profile users agree in the comments or also vote to close, I'll step in and make a binding vote.
How do you feel about suspensions? in what cases should it be used? and not?
They are powerful and should be used rarely. In the instance where a user joins and begins spamming with links to his or her commercial plug-in (with the best intentions, but it still comes across as spamming), I'll email them first and clarify the purpose of the site. If it continues, I'll issue a timed suspension.
What do you feel is a good way to deal with new users posting bad questions?
Start out with comments on each question and tips for improvement. If that goes nowhere, a quick email explaining what's "bad" about the questions and a sincere request to fix the problem with a follow-up shortly thereafter.
How would you deal with a user who produced a steady stream of valuable answers, but tends to generate a large number of arguments/flags from comments?
If the flags are for offensive content, it would warrant a discussion with the user outside of the site. Offensive comments and personal attacks have no place on the site and would be removed.
Which three nominees do you think are the most suited to become the next moderators and why?
Not including myself ...
MikeSchinkel - Mike has some of the most refined, thought-out answers I've seen on any community site. His dedication to WPA is phenomenal, and I know he'd do an outstanding job leading this community.
Rarst - Rarst is, by reputation points, even more active than Mike ... by a hair. He'd be a great addition to the existing moderation team and would be a great example for new members.
tnorthcutt - tnorthcutt is calm and measured when responding to new users and always has great insights. His comments on questions are just as useful as his answers, which leads me to believe he'd be an even stronger leader if made a permanent moderator.