We have an interface which allows us to pull specific photos up for screening, out of order. This is used ONLY for screening of legitimate priority subjects. We are informed of this via an email to screeners@ airliners net
Such "picking" from the queue is not done in normal screening.
The choice we're allowed is to screen from the "HQ" queue, or the "normal" queue.
Photos in the "HQ" queue (not entirely representative name) are those which have already received one "HQ" vote by a different screener. It is normal for photos to require three "HQ" votes before they are accepted. Photos in the "normal" queue have not yet received any "HQ" votes - so they either haven't been seen at all yet, or they've only received "Second-Opinion" votes so far.
It appears strange to you, Paul, because there will be lots of photos from all of the days which are still in the HQ
queue, and are waiting for a second or third (or more!) screener to look at them and make their decision(s).
It may be possible (indeed it happens often) that one screener has already screened ALL
the pics in the HQ
queue, so they can't do anything with that queue. They then start working on the "normal" queue, from which they could reject, instant-add, second-opinion, or add a HQ
vote (and hence move it to the HQ
So, you see it's not quite as straightforward as a pure sequential single-line queue.
However, it's important to point out that nobody or nothing gets priority other than legitimate newsworthy subjects.
Tamsin (a.net screening crew)