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Background

I have raised an issue with Microsoft connect and would like to raise its profile by posting a question to Stack Overflow. The issue raised with Microsoft connect is a technical issue which relates to the .Net framework including an proposal for the future.

Clearly, this would be of benefit to all .Net developers and given that StackOverflow has a huge .Net developer following, one can clearly see how raising such a question within StackOverflow would immediately bring this issue to light to the rest of the .Net community.

I remember reading a post by Jeff Atwood a while back where he was describing how SO would work and mentioned that SO would be that sweet spot of the intersection between forum - blog - commenting system - (+something extra which I don't recall) (if anyone can find that post would be grateful) It seems that Stack Overflow is more a place for solid questions (I may be wrong) hence I need some guidance as to what I can ask.

Question:

Is it allowed to post a question in Stack Overflow, where the question is merely raising the profile of a new Microsoft connect issue to the broader developer community that use Stack Overflow?

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Just thinking out loud: Is it possible to post the question in a way that honors the spirit and letter of the FAQ and documentation about asking questions? –  Andrew Barber Jan 23 '12 at 12:49
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The about page has the "sweet spot" diagram. –  ChrisF Jan 23 '12 at 12:50
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Too Localized immediately comes to mind. Additionally, what would be an answer to the question other than 'mee too', 'thanks' or 'I like turtles'? –  Tim Post Jan 23 '12 at 12:51
    
@Tim I don't like turtles. At least, not when I'm looking for a cuddly, playful companion. I look more toward a platypuss on such occasions. –  Andrew Barber Jan 23 '12 at 12:59
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You could post it to SO as a new question ("I see this behavior and I don't understand it") and answer it yourself ("It's a bug, here's when it happens, and the part of the spec that proves the behavior's wrong"). –  Daniel Beck Jan 23 '12 at 13:01
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One possible answer apart from "it's a bug" is "You misunderstood the spec". –  CodesInChaos Jan 23 '12 at 13:05
    
@CodeInChaos Good point :) –  Tim Post Jan 23 '12 at 13:12

1 Answer 1

up vote 11 down vote accepted

Most bug reports turn out to be answers, not questions, unless you have a question about the bug. From reading your question, it doesn't look like you have a question about the bug, especially since you were the one who reported it in the first place.

If you can somehow come up with a general, practical question or problem that would be answered by (for example) the fact that it's a bug, I suppose you can try posting it as such. If you know of a workaround for the issue, post the workaround for completeness. Here's an example answer linking to a bug that doesn't have any viable workaround besides keeping legacy code the way it is: Enum.GetNames() results in unexpected order with negative enum constants

Avoid posting it if it's too localized or too much of a corner case that it won't help many other programmers, though. Bug reports are still just bug reports at heart, and a bug tracker is where they belong. If you want to just share something you found, you can post links to it on social networking sites, write a blog post about it, or post on forums. Although Stack Overflow is sort of an intersection between all of the above, it still builds on the fundamental idea of question-and-answer.

Definitely do not post for the sole purpose of raising awareness of the your bug report or idea proposal. That almost reeks of self-promotion, especially for the latter case. The community doesn't take very kindly to blatantly self-promotional posts.

It's great that you want to share with fellow .NET developers on our site. Just remember that we're here to ask and answer questions more than to discuss ideas, proposals and bugs.

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In my experience, most bug reports (typically thinly veiled as questions) get a lot of up-votes. –  CodesInChaos Jan 23 '12 at 13:04
    
@CodeInChaos: Do you mean questions asking "Is this a bug?" or non-questions saying "I found a bug!"? –  BoltClock's a Unicorn Jan 23 '12 at 13:06
    
Questions asking "Is this a bug" where the asker in 99% sure that it is indeed a bug. –  CodesInChaos Jan 23 '12 at 13:07
    
    
@CodeInChaos: Those upvotes are deserved, IMO, which is why I suggested something along these lines :) Here's something more recent: stackoverflow.com/questions/8419079/… –  BoltClock's a Unicorn Jan 23 '12 at 13:17
    
Thanks everyone for the great and quick feedback! I guess that the most appropriate location is indeed a blog itself. @CodeInChaos, You are right, it is not a bug, this functionality is by design, so i've posted this as an 'idea'. For what its worth here is the link to the 'idea' –  Anastasiosyal Jan 23 '12 at 13:58

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