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New stewards are elected on a roughly annual basis in a process that has been ongoing since early 2005. In order to be elected, candidates must get at least 30 votes in favour and at least 80% support, be over 18 and sign the Confidentiality agreement for nonpublic information with the Wikimedia Foundation. Additional requirements for being a candidate or a voter (based on edit count) exist since 2009.
Orchestrated confirmation and discussion of the existing stewards was first undertaken in 2007. These confirmations run in concurrence with elections and are used to determine whether stewards should retain their rights.