mod·​er·​a·​tor | \ ˈmä-də-ˌrā-tər How to pronounce moderator (audio) \
plural moderators

Definition of moderator

1 : one who presides over an assembly, meeting, or discussion: such as
a : the chairman of a discussion group
b : the nonpartisan presiding officer of a town meeting
c : the presiding officer of a Presbyterian governing body
2 : one who arbitrates : mediator
3 : a substance (such as graphite) used for slowing neutrons in a nuclear reactor

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Other Words from moderator

moderatorship \ ˈmä-​də-​ˌrā-​tər-​ˌship How to pronounce moderatorship (audio) \ noun

Examples of moderator in a Sentence

The moderator allowed audience members to ask the governor questions. She acts as the moderator in our office meetings.

Recent Examples on the Web

Microsoft’s contractors listening to Cortana audio is one small example — content moderators at Facebook, on the other hand, are regularly exposed to extremely traumatic photos and videos and work in horrific conditions, as The Verge has reported. Jay Peters, The Verge, "How low-paid Microsoft contractors train Cortana by listening to you," 17 Aug. 2019 Facebook has launched an anti-misinformation campaign, tweaking site features to limit the reach of fake news and hiring fact-checking moderators around the world. Jessie Yeung, CNN, "Hong Kong isn't just battling on the streets: There is also a war on misinformation online," 11 Aug. 2019 Anna Wiener | The New Yorker | August 8, 2019 | 24 minutes (6,226 words) How two moderators are trying to make a popular Silicon Valley forum a thoughtful and productive space to have a conversation. Longreads, "The Top 5 Longreads of the Week," 7 Aug. 2019 And in both sets of debates, most chances the candidates had to talk more about their housing policies were thwarted by the questioning format or the moderators themselves. Alissa Walker, Curbed, "Americans spend too much money on housing. Why aren’t the candidates talking about it?," 1 Aug. 2019 Harris and Sanders were the only two candidates on their night to raise their hands when a moderator asked who would eliminate private insurance for Medicare for All. Tal Kopan,, "Kamala Harris unveils Medicare for All plan ahead of Democratic debate," 29 July 2019 But in general, as Ms Roberts chronicles, moderators are treated as low-skilled labour. The Economist, "The unacknowledged legislators of the online world," 14 June 2019 The company plans to hire around 10,000 additional workers, including content moderators around the world, to bolster this effort. Elizabeth Dwoskin,, "Facebook profit hits an all-time high, unaffected by recent scandals — so far," 26 Apr. 2018 The company plans to hire around 10,000 additional workers, including content moderators around the world, to bolster this effort. Washington Post,, "Facebook reaps soaring profits amid turbulent times," 25 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'moderator.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of moderator

circa 1560, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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Statistics for moderator

Last Updated

17 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for moderator

The first known use of moderator was circa 1560

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More Definitions for moderator



English Language Learners Definition of moderator

: someone who leads a discussion in a group and tells each person when to speak : someone who moderates a meeting or discussion


mod·​er·​a·​tor | \ ˈmäd-ə-ˌrāt-ər How to pronounce moderator (audio) \

Medical Definition of moderator

: a substance (as graphite, deuterium in heavy water, or beryllium) used for slowing down neutrons in a nuclear reactor

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Comments on moderator

What made you want to look up moderator? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


readily or continually undergoing change

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