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This is brought on by this question. Apparently there are no facilities for migrating questions from meta to any of the other sites:

I wish I could move this to SO (or perhaps SU) but Meta doesn't have any migration facilities.
– Kyle Cronin ♦

This seems inconsistent as SO, SU, and SF have migration between them and to meta; so why not from meta as well? From the example above, questions can clearly be posted here that belong elsewhere, too.

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Why the [moderator-abilities] tag? Surely it's implementing the option on the close flag? –  ChrisF Dec 28 '09 at 17:36
I thought it was relevant. –  Tom Ritter Dec 28 '09 at 18:41
@Tom Ritter - but adding to the close reasons means that it's available to all 3000+ rep users. You don't need to be a moderator. –  ChrisF Dec 28 '09 at 19:22
I think we're quibbling over semantics - people refer to 10K Rep Users as Moderators, and some people refer to 3K Rep Users as Moderators too. As Jeff says "At the high end of this reputation spectrum there is little difference between users with high reputation and moderators". I'm not advocating it become a ♦-only ability, I'm just trying to get the post into more categories to (maybe) make it more likely to be implemented. –  Tom Ritter Dec 28 '09 at 19:38
Ah - I see, I regard "moderators" as those with the ♦. –  ChrisF Dec 28 '09 at 19:54

6 Answers 6

While I do think that it will be used quite rarely, I do think that, at least for the sake of consistency, that it should be possible to migrate from Meta to the other sites.

Aside from questions that are truly posted in the wrong place (such as the original example), Meta does get the occasional question about implementation details of Stack Overflow that, while they involve SO, are better asked on SO itself. If caught early, it's easy enough to close the post and request that the author repost it on the correct site, but this may not always be the case and is the reason why the migration system was created in the first place.

edit: To show that my concerns aren't theoretical, here's a screenshot I just took of the mod panel:

alt text

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We're starting to get more questions asked here that should be moved rather than just closed. This one arrived today.

I left a comment and voted to close as "not stackoverflow related", but it's not really satisfactory.

I've added my support for this proposal and I'm bumping the question by adding this answer.

BUMP Another question that really should be migrated rather than simply closed.

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I don't like posting in [status-declined] questions, but there have been more than normal off-topic posts on Meta lately, mostly by people mistaking Meta for Stack Overflow.

Here are the questions that have been closed or deleted in the last 30 days alone that were both off-topic and should have been asked on Stack Overflow. (There are maybe 1 or 2 other off-topic questions not suitable for Stack Overflow.)

http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/65793/what-indexes-needs-to-be-added-for (closed)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/65572/nsstringfromsize-nsstringfrompoint (closed)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/22307/suggestions-for-dealing-with-difficul (closed)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/65799/the-different-regex-results-in (deleted)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/65055/code-sign-error (deleted)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/65274/what-is-ssl-hosting-and-what-are-the (deleted)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/65357/send-message-from-pc-to-iphone (deleted)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/64848/style-driven-development (deleted)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/64942/does-scalability-depend-on-programming (deleted)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/64705/rendering-html-tags-into-ssrs-2005 (deleted)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/64198/right-click-not-working-in-microsoft-office-2010 (deleted)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/40800/rewrite-this-dcl-code (deleted)
http://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/63919/sbjson-touchjson-leak (deleted)

So that's not a huge amount (about 1 every 2.5 days), but it's still annoying to have to keep track of them in the closed/deleted lists... it's noise, really.

My Suggestion

With the per-site-Meta model now, I think the following makes the most sense:

  • On all Meta sites, allow migration to the parent site
  • On per-site Metas, also allow migration to Meta Stack Overflow

This makes Meta SO an endpoint for Meta questions (as it should be), but allows a Meta site to migrate back and forth between the parent site (and that's it -- no MSO to SU, for example).

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You have to try hard to end up on meta. Questions are not posted here on accident very often by any standard -- I know of two times from the top of my head. To me it's purpose seems clear enough that people don't post questions better suited for other sites.

The main reason for the migration tool is because some users don't understand where their issue lies, and may confuse a software issue with a server one, or vice versa. This isn't likely the case on meta.

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Understood, but people that use all four sites can sometimes get mixed up. (I've seen the rare question on SU that belongs on SO in much the same manner.) While this answer does do an excellent job of explaining why questions are rarely accidentally posted here, I don't feel it addresses why having a migration function would be a bad idea. –  lc. Aug 4 '09 at 4:20

This may be [status-completed]...? All of the SU and SF questions that were on MSO before the per-site metas were implemented are now marked "migrated from meta.stackoverflow.com"; however, I could see this being a one-time-only thing.

"Each of these limited edition migration notices is individually numbered — in our database — and lovingly hand-engraved with the finest quality text editors...."

Uh, anyways... here're an example for SU and an example for SF.

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No, Jeff @ Co most likely hacked the database or ran some kind of script to make these migrations happen. If it was the latter, then this feature request is probably closer to [status-completed]. –  Jon Seigel Jul 26 '10 at 22:53

Metas are black holes -- and this is completely intentional.

You can't migrate away from meta, only toward a meta as a final resting place for a question.

We might have a special case where an engine-only question is migrated from a per-site (child) meta to the engine meta (here), but that's about it.

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