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23 votes

Do we want questions about "What are open source alternatives to X"?

My stance is that no, we should not. We are a community of experts on the subject of open source projects, specifically, we know how to create, maintain, and use open source projects. We do not have ...
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21 votes
Accepted

Is open source limited to software?

No way! As was previously discussed on the Area51 proposal, we should be looking to accept questions about the application of open source principles and models, whether or not they involve software. ...
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  • 525
15 votes

How to encourage questions about anything but licenses?

Always a good way to form a community is leading by example. So if you want the community include more non-licensing question you should ask some good questions yourself. Another way might be ...
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  • 10.8k
13 votes

Is open source limited to software?

I think broader is better. If we are narrow in scope we have problems getting quality questions later. However, if there is already a site dedicated to specific aspects of Open Source and a question ...
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  • 708
13 votes

Are historical questions on topic?

Yes. They lend variety to the things we talk about - we have a lot of licensing questions so far - and they're directly related to open source.
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  • 8,750
13 votes

Are FAQs on-topic?

FAQs are generally considered on-topic on every site,* and I see no reason why they shouldn't be here. That doesn't mean they're good questions, but the commonness of a question or the lack of ...
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13 votes

Do we want to allow specific questions?

Do we want to allow specific questions? Not just 'yes', but… helllll yes! See my answer on Is 'too specialized' a reason to close vote? As I replied to the comment earlier: You might be confusing ...
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13 votes
Accepted

Make the site about Open Information!

Let me take a second to introduce myself to those that don't know me. I'm Tim Post, the Director of Stack Overflow Communities here at Stack Exchange. I'm an associate member of the FSF, and a former ...
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  • 101
12 votes
Accepted

Are questions about collaborative development on-topic

Yes, as long as it is also about open source development. We can't have people coming along and asking us about developing their proprietary software merely because we allow collaborative development ...
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  • 8,750
12 votes
Accepted

How comes the most popular question from the definition phase got closed as too broad?

The definition phase on Area 51 is usually ok to outline the scope of the site. But it is bad at producing good questions. On Area 51, you can only type a title, not a whole question. It's tempting to ...
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12 votes

Would major FLOSS announcements be on topic?

A note before I start: I don't actually know where I personally stand on this, but this is certainly one viewpoint. Not My Opinion tm. No. It really doesn't fit the format. Stack Exchange sites are ...
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  • 8,750
11 votes

Are NC & ND Creative Commons licenses on topic?

I do think they are on topic. Explaining exactly how NC licenses work, how they differ to other licenses, and what their OSI relationship is seem excellent questions to me
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  • 9,006
11 votes

Are historical questions on topic?

Yes, they should be. Reasoning behind certain decisions in the past can help people build their knowledge on certain topics, and if it is related to open source and licensing, then I don't see a ...
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  • 6,239
11 votes

How far into legal questions do we stray?

Open source (etc.) is a about copyright. It's about law. To some extent, we have to take law questions, or we can't really discuss FLOSS. But we also, I think, do not want to take law questions that ...
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  • 436
11 votes

License recommendations

Recommendation is not the problem. If a question is specific and detailed and can be answered with facts rather than pure opinion then the recommendation will be meaningful and relevant to users of ...
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  • 2,149
11 votes

Off-topic reason restricts to software

Proposed wording: off-topic: This question does not appear to relate to open source, within the scope defined in the [help]. (Changed wording in bold - the final close reason will not require bold....
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  • 2,149
10 votes

Will "software" be an implicit tag for every question not categorized in another way?

I would be of the opinion that "software" as a tag would become overused and cumbersome and ultimately completely useless (like a "computer" tag on Superuser).. It'd make more sense to tag non-...
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10 votes

Is [Software X] open source, and if yes where is the source code?

“Is X open source?” — No. That's a question about a specific piece of software, not a question about open source. Doing the legwork to research the provenance of all the pieces of a software package ...
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10 votes

Questions that only arise in an open source context

Any question that's specifically relevant to open source works and projects should be on-topic. If “the question only tends to arise in an open-source context”, it's on-topic. In particular, avoid the ...
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10 votes

Should questions pertaining to open knowledge be in scope

I think they should. Wikipedia follows the Open Source ideas, the license being first GFDL, later CC-BY-SA. These licenses are fully in the idea behind open source, the only thing is they have no ...
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  • 10.8k
9 votes
Accepted

Do we want recommendation/shopping questions?

This specific question I don't think the question is asking for recommendations of VCS. Instead, it is asking for knowledge about the existence of VCS: the OP has a problem about collaboration, which ...
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  • 8,750
9 votes

Should we just allow open source?

Having commented, I might as well put up my thoughts: Here's the Area 51 "Blurb" Beta Q&A site for people organizing, marketing or licensing open source development projects. I think the ...
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  • 6,239
9 votes

Should we allow "What's the difference between <license A> and <license B>" types of questions?

I agree that before we flood this site with questions all asking about what's the difference between this and that and that and this, that we should instead educate the general public, to make their ...
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  • 6,239
9 votes

Questions about demographic imbalance

The community road won't be smooth. Gender equality and involvement has long been an issue in many computer and technology industries. As Open Source development projects are composed of many ...
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  • 6,239
9 votes

Does a question need to include source code to be on topic?

As per the site scope, Open Source is not just code, and people shouldn't have to simply "show" the code to make sure that their question won't be criticized as off-topic. This is similar to what ...
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  • 6,239
8 votes

Free Software in the description, please?

This site is not solely about software. I'm rather partisan of keeping it simple. Definitely keep “Open Source” as the site name. Mention somewhere in the description that this includes all free/...
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8 votes

Free Software in the description, please?

Just so that there is some history here (cause everyone loves history, right!) The term "free software" is older, and is reflected in the name of the Free Software Foundation (FSF), an ...
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  • 6,239
8 votes

Should we allow "What's the difference between <license A> and <license B>" types of questions?

I don't see why they would be off-topic. Licensing is relevant to open source. “What's the difference between <license A> and <license B>” is too broad. But “How do <license A> and &...
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8 votes

Questions that only arise in an open source context

A question that almost exclusively arises when dealing with open source should be considered on topic. What is relevant here is that by having this question on os.SE: It will reach the right audience....
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  • 2,070
8 votes
Accepted

Are technical questions about specific software that happens to be open source on-topic?

This would be off topic. Your example question is not about the SUBJECT of open source. The open source component of this question is only coincidental.
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