Most people assume that being an editor is a tough task. And most people just might be right. But being an editor is only as hard as you personally want it to be. Granted you need to be dedicated to the Board in making it run, but you don't have to slave your life away to it if you can do things correctly. And we're working on that more and more every day so that the Board transitions from writer to editor, when necessary, are more seamless and less painful.
Anyway, being an editor on the Board is having power; except for the webmasters, who have the ultimate power. (You could demote a webmaster, but it wouldn't have any effects because said webmaster would just hack into the system and restore his previous access level.) The difference between editors and webmasters is that webmasters create all the systems that are used by the editors and aren't required to approve anything. Webmasters can still answer questions if they want, but they aren't bound to answer a certain number of questions. They also aren't required to perform certain editor functions.
However, editors don't misuse their power; they just use it to help the Board work. Mainly editors exist to enforce policies; be figureheads for BYU administrators; moderate writers; and assign questions, edit submissions, and delete submissions when necessary. Editors are also responsible for making sure that questions that are about to post get final approval for posting. If the question isn't approved by an editor (and by a writer) it doesn't post.
In addition to all of that (as if the above paragraph description isn't enough) editors are able to run any task on the Board, including manually posting Today's Posts when the system isn't cooperating, regenerating writer stats, archiving the current questions in the system, and other fun things that are actually really boring to everyone else. We also get to choose the content for the title bar, create categories for the archives, take care of t-shirts and inventory, and create new menus and web pages. That's a lot of stuff! Good thing we don't have to do it all at the same time.
Editors are in charge of the entire application process, from sending out applications to accepting new writers and everything in between. However, contrary to popular belief, it does not help a prospective applicant to know the editors and/or to try to stalk us. Applicants are first considered completely by their personality application, and should they be able to continue, the research application. You could be one of the editors' best friends and still not make the cut.
One of the most exciting events of being an editor is checking the statistics. We have statistics of how many readers the Board has, what global location they are logging in from, and how many submissions the Board has received per week. Editors can also tell how many readers have logged in lately too. But we don't just monitor the reader stats; they have writer stats too. Editors can tell how many questions writers have answered over the past week, when they last logged in, and when their last response time was. All of these stats help monitor the writers (find who is slacking off and who is being an overachiever) to help keep our writership strong and dedicated to the Board.
Sometimes we organize miscellaneous events, such as the Wilk Booth we try to run every semester for publicity. But usually the writers are willing to step in and help us out. The editors can't do everything; we really do need help from the writers.
Editors spend a lot of time on the Board... we're not going to lie. We get online at least twice a day, but if we get on at all, it is towards the end of the day to make sure questions are approved and ready to post for the next day. We'll check our messages for flagged questions -- questions that the writers have noted as being questionable -- and respond to any other inquiries from writers. We'll check the submissions currently in the Inbox and assign any that are approaching 100 hours or need to be assigned for other reasons. We'll also check stats to figure out who hasn't been answering lately to make sure that we are assigning questions fairly and accurately. However, most of the time the questions take care of themselves.
And then we'll log off. For at least twenty minutes.
We're addicted. But we love it.
Interesting stats from the editors:
Longest number of hours taken to answer a question: 2653 (the writer retired and took the answer with him)
Shortest reign by an editor: Erik P., 4 months (so short we can't find him or remember his alias)
Longest reign by an editor: Duchess, 2.5 years
Registered readers as of June 2006: 1400
Average number of submissions per week 2003: 135
Record 2003: 160, week 47
Average number of submissions per week 2004: 186
Record 2004: 330, week 43
Average number of submissions per week 2005: 220
Record 2005: 370 questions, week 38
Average number of submissions per week 2006: 180
Record 2006 as of May 2006: 355, week 7