This discussion is going on at stackoverflow meta: adding-discipline-to-programmers-stackexchange-com

If I was to ask a specific topic about one single other SE site here, it would be closed as off-topic (and rightly so). Why is this discussion that is specifically about this site happening on another meta?

Do you agree with having that discussion there instead of here? Can explain why you think this discussion should (or should not) be happening on this meta instead?

  • It affected all programming and programming-related sites, and formed the basis for a global policy on subjective questions. The discussion already happened here. You missed it. I'm sorry.
    – user8
    Commented Oct 6, 2010 at 18:41
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    I don't get it. Did you mean to link to that question? It does not contain a discussion about what are good and bad questions on here, it merely regurgitates the six subjective questions that Jeff decided on. As for affecting all programming related sites - maybe it did, but the only example questions being asked for were questions from this site, not from all programming related sites. Commented Oct 6, 2010 at 18:47
  • Read the answer. It lists almost a dozen places where we discussed it here.
    – user8
    Commented Oct 6, 2010 at 18:48
  • I didn't miss all of those discussions, I participated in at least one of them, and you answered my comment! However, my point is that Jeff specifically set up a poll of good and bad questions from this site over on another site and I think that is the wrong way to go about things. Commented Oct 6, 2010 at 19:00
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    We did, too. We discussed it—in great detail—here. Jeff expanded it to Meta.StackOverflow because the consequences of it affected all of the Stack Overflow splinter proposals like Developer Testing, Software Engineering, Compiler Design, etc.
    – user8
    Commented Oct 6, 2010 at 19:05
  • Okay, now that makes some sense, I suppose. Thank you for the clarification Mark, I appreciate it. Commented Oct 6, 2010 at 19:11

1 Answer 1


Because the problem was never that the P.SE community was unhappy with P.SE. That would have given rise to discussion here, and a whole lot more participation in the various "What's on-topic?" threads. But by and large, P.SE users wanted the sort of content that was showing up on the site, and with a handful of exceptions were content to just participate on the site itself.

No, the problem was that P.SE - the content, the users, the very idea behind its inception were seen as distasteful and embarrassing by The Stack Exchange. The perception of the StackExchange brand has become a concern for them, and a site seen as frivolous didn't fit with the image they hoped to project. It's anyone's guess why they let the Area51 proposal make it all the way through commitment; perhaps they thought it would fizzle in private beta and could then be swept under the rug? But once the site went live and immediately garnered popular support it became hard for them to ignore it - and so they had a problem.

Hence the discussion on Meta. Asking P.SE users to solve their own problems wouldn't have been a useful thing to do, as the problems were not those of the P.SE users.

  • Wonderful summary Mr C. Thanks for taking the time to answer in such an insightful way. Commented Oct 6, 2010 at 19:25

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