Earlier today, a few moderators (myself included) had a chat about site overlap and scope reform across various sites. Before I continue, let me make note of a highly related post:

Revisiting what is on topic, with respect to new sites: Open Source, Law, and Software Recommendations, and in particular, my answer over there.

The discussion centred mostly on the issue of scope, and existing questions currently held at Programmers SE.

Some topics include the possibility of removing licensing and project management from the scope of Programmers SE, and thus moving any such related question over here. Other topics that arose included the possibility of migrations, locking well-known questions to be retained at Programmers, and the possibility of not doing anything at all.

I'm raising this post because I need to see the perspective from this community. Therefore, please tell us your thoughts so that we can understand and build forward upon this.

To clarify, we're not looking for opinion here about Programmers' scope; that's for them to decide. We're looking for community input about if we're happy for other sites to send questions that may or may not be on-topic, and for us to deal with them.

White board transcript: click here

Just to clarify what I would like to see...

I want to answers that takes into consideration all aspects. I understand that Programmers is its own community, but I want to see what the community's best interest is. I want to encourage discussion, and feel free to say anything in respect to the scope here or at programmers, about migrations, or anything for that matter. Raise potential issues or concerns, suggest recommendations on further action. Remember that this is intended to be a constructive discussion, so don't worry about the Programmers side just yet; your site moderators will be in active discussions with others on the issue. We'll make sure to keep each community posted on any developments.

Maybe a couple more points...

  • Don't worry about migrating crap

    Since this is a "beta" site, moderators both here and at Programmers will have to migrate things anyway - the community can't do it themselves, even if they have 25 gazillion migration votes. Now of course, the moderators here could be awesome and start playing ping pong, migrating back whatever is sent here... :P

  • Tell me what Programmers should do.

    You may not be part of the Programmers community necessarily, but you are part of the discussion. Therefore, you have every right to speak up, and say something, even if it doesn't directly involve you. You need to tell us what you want to see on the part of all communities: The other communities that are involved are Law SE, and Software Recs SE (to a certain extent, there questions were never on-topic at Programmers to begin with).

  • If you give me "words" from a general viewpoint, it doesn't really add anything. Don't focus on migrations, focus on scope. The Programmers post is called "revisiting what is on topic..." for a reason. So make sure that you completely say everything that you need in order to have a meaningful discussion - We're not just talking migrations. You have equal status with the community at Programmers, so speak up and tell us what you want need to see!

  • 1
    Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat.
    – ArtOfCode
    Aug 20, 2015 at 7:49

3 Answers 3


Among the things we can decide on, the scope of Programmers SE is not one. Besides, licensing and project management should only be in scope here if they are about open source.

It would be nice if you could provide a transscript of the discussion though.

(edit: after the clarifications)

Good questions that are on scope here should be always welcome, whether migrated from a different SE or not. Sure, send them on! But broad questions that may or may not be on topic here should IMO not be migrated. It makes for terrible UX for a question to be closed on some site, migrated to another, and closed there as well. Some noise is acceptable, but we shouldn't be open for migration on any question about licensing or project management.

  • 3
    Minor clarification: we're not looking for opinion about Progs' scope, but about whether we're happy to take questions that may or may not be on-topic, and deal with them.
    – ArtOfCode
    Aug 18, 2015 at 12:30
  • 1
    Martijn, I want to write an answer that takes into consideration all aspects. I understand that Programmers is its own community, but I want to see what the community's best interest is. I want to encourage discussion, and feel free to say anything in respect to the scope here or at programmers, about migrations, or anything for that matter. I'm sorry if I was unclear on this, but this is what I would like.
    – Zizouz212
    Aug 19, 2015 at 0:35
  • 2
    @ArtOfCode I think what Martijn is trying to say is that if a question may or may not be on-topic, then it should not be transferred. Just flag it as off topic for Programmers and close it. Only questions that are definitely on topic for this place should be transferred. Aug 20, 2015 at 3:33
  • 1
    @AbhiBeckert Well said, thanks
    – ArtOfCode
    Aug 20, 2015 at 7:54
  • 1
    @AbhiBeckert However, I don't want to see just migrations: I need to explicitly see what you want done. What do you want to see on the part of Programmers? You seem to be approaching this from a general perspective, as if we could be taking questions from Seasoned Advice. For me, this information lacks the case-specific information that I want, and I might have to go out to declare it invalid.
    – Zizouz212
    Aug 20, 2015 at 17:27
  • 1
    @Zizouz212 What do I want to see on the part of Programmers? My rep over there (excluding network carry over) is 174. And most of that comes from a single question I asked that I duplicated on this site while open source was in the "proposal" stage of area 51. I don't feel like I'm part of the Programmers community and am not going to discuss what they should do. Also if I was going to discuss what Programmers wants to do, I would go over to meta.programmers to discuss it. We should not be discussing Programmers here. that would be just as bad as doing so in a private moderator chat room. Aug 20, 2015 at 20:37
  • 1
    Since we should not discuss programmers here, the only part of the question that should be discussed/answered is the part that applies to this site. Do we want questions that "may" be on topic here to be transferred here. My answer is "no". I only want to see questions that "are" on topic transferred. Aug 20, 2015 at 20:38
  • 1
    @AbhiBeckert Why don't you pop over into a chatroom so that we can discuss this more in-depth: chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/25118/the-bikeshed Also, don't misinterpret what I'm saying that you are deciding, but I need you to tell me what you want to see, what you recommend in the near future.
    – Zizouz212
    Aug 20, 2015 at 20:55

The site description on programmers reads the following:

For professional programmers interested in conceptual questions about software development.

Here's my stance:

If Programmers is to make questions off-topic with respect to sites, I then want two aspects of scope to come to Open Source:

  • Project Management
  • FLOSS Software licensing

Having one or the other simply won't work out: I fear the possibility of creating "secondary", under-privileged sections that will come within our scope.

As such what I would want to see:

  • Keep both sorts of questions on-topic for both Programmers and Open Source. What I would likely want to see on the part of Programmers would be to actively discourage questions of those sort, not because I think they would be a better fit on Open Source, but because I feel like they don't completely match the Programmers site description. Keeping both on-topic would also mean much less significant work in closure and migrations, which could likely be a hassle. I also want to discourage migrations of older questions from either site: Doing so means that the location of the information has been changed, and that existing links would be damaged. There is also a large chance that the author's don't know where there content will be.

Of course, this is simply what I think. If both communities can reach a consensus on what to do for a particular element, then so be it. I think that my suggestion would be more beneficial for both communities, in terms of work saved and so on.

  • 3
    "Keep both sorts of questions on-topic for both Programmers and Open Source." Surely if a question is on-topic for Programmers then it will not be transferred? We should only be talking about questions that the Programmers community thinks need to be closed on their site. Aug 20, 2015 at 3:40
  • 2
    @AbhiBeckert The issue is that is not the point of the discussion. The point of the post was to see what the community wants on the part of this site, and that of programmers.
    – Zizouz212
    Aug 20, 2015 at 17:25

Programmers sees a lot of open source licensing questions. I think it's pretty obvious that many of those questions are a good fit here. I would encourage those migrations.

General project management questions aren't really in scope here, are they? Only FLOSS project management questions are on topic here. I would encourage those migrations too, to help "seed" the site, but we'll need to be a little pickier about those.

Overall, I think it's a good idea, but people flagging questions on Programmers need to be aware of the scope here. It's a terrible UX to get bounced from site to site just to end up with a closed question. As always, Just don't migrate crap.

  • 1
    Thanks for the feedback. The moderators here and there will make sure to remain in constant close contact if we ever consider migrations. Thank you :)
    – Zizouz212
    Aug 20, 2015 at 0:13
  • 1
    You're welcome @Zizouz212. I am a bit concerned that many people on P.SE are fed up with those questions and will try to migrate poor quality Qs, but I think that they'll remember how they felt when SO was basically treating them like a toilet.
    – RubberDuck
    Aug 20, 2015 at 0:19
  • 1
    Since this is a beta site, the migrations will have to be done by moderators anyway. I don't really think that quality will be an issue if we do migrations.
    – Zizouz212
    Aug 20, 2015 at 0:20

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .