I've been an active member of Stack Overflow for three years and four months now. I remember the beginnings of the first Stack Overflow subsite, and how it began to be popular. Back in those days, developers had only forums to discuss their work. And those forums were old, and owned mostly by people who — as in many communities — after some time began to deny entry to new people. As a result of owners exerting too much control, whole forums were dragged to stagnation.
And then came Joel Spolsky and Jeff Atwood, creating Stack Overflow. It was a place where more professional developers came to discuss many topics relevant to software development, and it was beautiful to learn from them.
At that time, I was very active at Stack Overflow. Then came the idea about making moderators. I remember the whole fuzz who would be a moderator and so on. It was not neccessary, in my opinion, because the whole community used the system in great way to deal with spam and other issues. But moderators came in.
And now, three years after the start, I'm seeing a strange pattern in Stack Overflow's development. First of all, when I ask new questions, I get some silly answers. It's like they were posted by people who hunt for questions to answer just to get kudos or something without reading the question first.
It was a regular thing. But today, my mind was blown by the way my question was handled. I've asked on Stack Overflow about how to handle concentration problems in developer work. Three Stack Overflow users closed my question after 15 minutes or so. It wasn't even migrated to another Stack Exchange property.
Well... it might be not proper for the developer site. So is Stack Overflow now only for coding monkeys? I can only ask questions connected very strongly with languages, like how to cast
strings? Where is the whole medium-professional developer place?
So I asked this question on Programmers Stack Exchange. But there, one moderator (Yannis Rizos) made a judgment call and closed my question and didn't move it to the right Stack Exchange site.
So I'm a developer and have a question about a developer issue but it's not good for Stack Overflow or Programmers? Where should I put it? I've now put it in the Productivity site, but I don't know if non-developers will understand my developer problem.
It's sad that Stack Overflow has started to be like forums I quit before. Moderators make calls in cases where they should not do so, and where doing so does not help anyone at all. It's not what I expect from moderators on a website where the community mostly self-moderates.
And the culture of Stack Overflow is also horryfying. In the beginning, the culture here was the #1 priority and everyone knew that users should not be offensive or rude to others. Now it's a regular thing for people to just attack and criticise each other in comments without any particular reason. And where are moderators in these moments?
So, to sum up: the basic Stack Overflow is not for me anymore. Programmers SE is also not for me. I'm a developer and have questions concerning not only "casting to
int" issues but also developers' workplaces/surroundings. What platform of Stack Exchange fits my needs best? Where should I ask to not whine any more here?
A similar question was asked on the Programmers Stack Exchange yesterday: How do you maintain focus when a particular aspect of programming takes 10+ seconds to complete? .
96 upvotes for the first answer
Result? Closed by: Jarrod Roberson, Matthieu, Conrad Frix, Yannis Rizos
Sum up: 100+ members of community decided the question is great by votes, comments and discussion, but four decide it's a bad question. Why is 4 > 100?