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Jeff seems in favor of cross-site duplicates. Some questions might be asked on three different sites, each site needing three different answers. For example, a question about a text editor.

So perhaps their should be a way to link the questions on the three different sites. Adding a link manually in the questions is certainly possible, but perhaps a feature officially supporting this will be beneficial.

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3 Answers 3

up vote 8 down vote accepted

I think there's value in having similar questions posted to multiple sites, so long as they're actually on-topic for the sites they're posted to.

After all, I'd certainly expect to see different solutions from a set of Sys Admins than I would from programmers... And if I'm a Sys Admin, I probably don't care to read detailed suggestions for writing my own tools so much as I want a good description of how to use the tools I already have - so there's value in separating these answers as well.

If a question is off-topic for a given site, then it should be closed - and optionally migrated to the site it's on-topic for, where it can be closed again as a duplicate.

Otherwise, let users cross-link as they see fit; after all, it may make more sense to link to answers on another site rather than blindly linking together the questions themselves.

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At this point I guess you could simply quote them from question to question, possibly as CW. The permissive license we use permits us to do so. –  badp Jul 31 '10 at 22:10
    
Would this still be true for highly specific questions about buggy tools? I see this all the time on SO vs. SF. Qualitative questions, sure, get two audiences. But these are more like "Hey I saw this error what config option do I need to fix it?" –  Christopher Aug 23 '12 at 22:20
    
I only ask because the latter case seems to poison the well. When I'm trying to fix a highly specific error, I don't want to search three SE sites. I want to search google, and I want its top hit to tell me exactly what I need to know. –  Christopher Aug 23 '12 at 22:24
    
If the top three search results end up being SO, SU and SF, each with a good answer focused on their specific audience... Well, that's ok @Christopher. –  Shog9 Aug 23 '12 at 22:37
    
Eh... fair enough. Honestly I've sort of reversed my opinion about this whole thing in the past 20 minutes. The questions I'm thinking about are so edge-casey that even if I were right (I don't particularly think I am), it's Not A Big Deal (tm). –  Christopher Aug 23 '12 at 22:39

I'm not sure I agree with that, as the different audiences may have significantly different viewpoints on a question that is "the same".

With this in mind, if I'm looking for a question on SO it should be needless to say that I'm after the SO viewpoint. If I wanted the SU viewpoint, I would search it on SU.

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Sometimes its good to have multiple viewpoints. –  Justin Dearing Aug 23 '09 at 20:40

I see no need to explicitly link these questions. If there is answers or questions cross site they often get referenced in the answers, but the question will pertain to both sites. Users of SU may never go to SF or SO because it is not their area of knowledge or they may just not be interested.

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