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Sidenote: It might be, that I am alone in feeling the need for this feature, as I am a wordpress developer and hence mostly hanging out around / answering questions tagged , , and .

3 kind of questions: I notice three types of questions asked under the tag, which certainly goes for other tags related to separate SE network sites as well:

  1. There certainly are questions revolving around wordpress development that indeed fit better here at SO than they would at WPSE. Namely those that are mostly php, mySQL and/or algorithmic questions that happen to have come up in a wordpress environment. I am far from suggesting that the tag is obsolete, even though there is WPSE. (see an example of this type of question)

  2. A bunch of questions fit on either site - those that are true coding questions (php), but heavily rely on the wordpress API. The abundance of php knowledge of SO users is far greater than on WPSE (both due to individual skill level as well as sheer user numbers), the API however is much more well known to wordpress power users hanging at WPSE. Those kind of questions I wouldn't be sure about where to best ask myself. It is best decided individually, I guess. (see an example of this type of question)

  3. A third kind of question still gets asked on SO with regular frequency that would much better be asked at WPSE. Those are questions that can either be solved with existing wp plugins or via the admin UI, or even questions about a particular plugin or admin function. In most cases, the user who posted the question is not to blame - the "wordpress" tag exists, he or she might have even found SO by googling a wp related search term and might not know about the existence of WPSE. (see an example of this type of question)

The issue: Often I am fairly certain, bordering on knowing for sure, that a particular question would have much better chances of being answered thoroughly on WPSE. I feel reluctant to flag such questions for moderator attention though, if I don't have the option to make the specific suggestion to migrate it to WPSE. After all the questions I'm referring to are not spam, often not bad questions either. I usually handle such cases by commenting on the question and telling the respective OP that he or she had better try at WPSE and link to it. The downside of this is, that if the user follows the suggestion, the exact same question gets asked at WPSE and the one on SO remains an unanswered relic that for one clutters SO and also might be found via google by people having the same issue rather than finding the (hopefully answered) WPSE question.

The feature request: I'd highly appreciate if the option "belongs to this other SE network site:" was added to the flagging menu under "It doesn't belong here > off topic".

The discussion:

  • Am I alone with this or would others deem it helpful?
  • And while we're at it, just for me personally, any suggestions on a clearer guideline on where "type 2" (see above) questions ought to go?

Sidenote #2: Both webmasters.stackexchange.com and programmers.stackexchange.com appear in that list, "Programmers" having about the same amount of total questions as does WPSE, "Pro Webmasters" only half. Are questions migrated to those sites more often than to WPSE? I highly doubt it, but what do statistics say?

Sidenote #3: The above question examples are not entirely perfect, but taken from the last two days. Didn't feel like going through loads of archives.

EDIT, Stats: According to Jeremy (see comment), within the last three months, 392 questions have been migrated to Programmers (#3), 252 to Webmasters (#4) and 105 to Wordpress (#7).

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The question is what are the most common SE sites that questions are (or should be) migrated to from SO, those should be in the "off topic" flag area. IMO I honestly doubt wordpress.SE is one of them (SF, SU and Programmer certainly seem right). If those options aren't in the list just use the "other" option and say "this quesiton belongs on X.SE" which is what I always do. –  Ben Brocka Nov 13 '11 at 0:05
    
Some approximate stats from Google: 5000 migrated to programmers, 1000 migrated to webmasters, 25 migrated to wordpress. Anybody with 10k on SO can see detailed statistics in the 10k tools –  nhinkle Nov 13 '11 at 0:08
    
@Ben I don't doubt you're right about SF and SU being (much) more significant. What about webmasters? Also, the "other" option exists under "needs moderator attention", but not under "doesn't belong > off topic". –  Johannes Pille Nov 13 '11 at 0:10
    
@nhinkle 25 is for sure way off. Just out of curiosity: What was your google query? –  Johannes Pille Nov 13 '11 at 0:12
    
@JohannesPille click the links, and you'll see. It's just a quick search for site:stackoverflow.com "migrated to wordpress". Obviously, it won't pick up deleted questions, and might miss some. Just a rough estimate, but gives you an idea of the proportions. We'd need an SO user with 10k to see the real stats. –  nhinkle Nov 13 '11 at 0:15
    
I see a fair amount of questions moved from SO to Webmasters, especially since I frequent the PHP tag; my point was more that for SO there should probably be hard data proving which 5~ sites are most common. I honestly doubt Wordpress is in the top 5, but I don't have the hard data. –  Ben Brocka Nov 13 '11 at 0:27
    
@nhinkle Within the last three months: 392 to Programmers (#3), 252 to Webmasters (#4), 105 to Wordpress (#7). –  Jeremy Banks Nov 13 '11 at 1:29

1 Answer 1

I think you may be approaching this the wrong way. I can see from your explanation of the "3 types of questions" you see that you mean well, but consider the following:

Any time a question is on topic for the SE site it was originally asked on, it should remain on that site. If it might get better attention on another site, it should only be migrated if and only if the question asker agrees that they'd prefer to have it somewhere else. Users may be aware of the strengths and weaknesses of each site, and choose where to ask their question accordingly.

When you see a question which you think has a significantly better chance of getting a good answer on Wordpress.SE (or any site, really) than it does on Stack Overflow (or wherever it was asked), ask yourself first, "is this question allowed on Stack Overflow insofar as the FAQ outlines the scope of the site?". If the answer is "no", then flag away. In most cases with Wordpress though, the answer will be "yes, this question is on-topic, even if it's not ideal."

In these "yes, it's on topic for SO but would get a better response on WP" cases, you should leave a kind comment explaining to the user that there is another site in our network which specializes in Wordpress where they might get a better answer. Suggest to them that they consider having their question migrated there if they want to. Make note that they should not double-post, but should instead flag for a moderator to migrate it for them, or if they have <15 rep (required to flag things), they should reply to the comment and ask you to flag it for them. For example:

Hi, welcome to Stack Overflow! You may not know this yet, but there is actually another site in this network all about WordPress, not just programming in general. From reading your question, I think it would get a better response over there. If you'd like your question moved to our other site, [just flag it for a moderator and ask them to migrate it for you|just respond to my comment (you can use @myname to make sure I get notified) and I'll flag it for a moderator to migrate it.]. If you'd rather leave your question here, that's fine too.

If they ask you to flag it for them, use the "other" flag reason and make sure to say "OP asked for a migration - see comments" so that the moderator handling the flag knows the question asker approves of the migration.


(Side note: I'm a mod on Super User, and there are several sites [ask ubuntu, ask different, linux and unix, gaming, etc.] where questions which are on-topic for SU would also be on-topic. This is our formal policy for migrating on-topic questions elsewhere. SO should work mostly the same, but if an SO mod or experienced user has more specific or additional info to add, they likely know better than I do for this site specifically.)

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+1 While I do / did comment those type of questions already, I didn't consider to offer to flag for the user or explain that they can if he or she wanted it to happen. Will adapt this strategy. Would still, out of pure curiosity love to see stats. Also, as an aside, thanks for noticing "well meaning" - while I don't necessarily expect this feature request to be implemented, I think it's quite ridiculous that it got downvoted - is it really "not showing research effort", "unclear" or "not useful"? –  Johannes Pille Nov 13 '11 at 0:39
    
@JohannesPille: Usually, downvotes on meta don't mean that people think your post is bad, just that they disagree (i.e. don't think the migration path is necessary). –  Jeremy Banks Nov 13 '11 at 0:53
    
@JeremyBanks Fair enuff, that does make sense. I don't really give a hoot about rep, especially on meta. Simply was something I didn't expect to happen and which was new to me (never got nothing downvoted on no SE network site). Oh well, every experience enriches life ;-) Also, seeing your SO profile, according to nhinkle you can see true stats - would you be so kind as to share some insight? –  Johannes Pille Nov 13 '11 at 0:59
    
@JohannesPille: Sorry, I screwed that up and got the number wrong. Please don't start making a post based on them. >_< One second... –  Jeremy Banks Nov 13 '11 at 1:24
    
@JeremyBanks you can provide the raw numbers if you want. It's not particularly sensitive data. –  nhinkle Nov 13 '11 at 1:30
    
@nhinkle: True. Edited my reply above to just include the numbers. –  Jeremy Banks Nov 13 '11 at 1:32
    
@JeremyBanks I had edited my post accordingly, will update numbers now. –  Johannes Pille Nov 13 '11 at 1:32

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