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The criteria for migrating a question are:

  1. The question is off-topic on the current site.
  2. The question is high-quality.
  3. The question is on-topic for the target site.

Or, as stated in the FAQ,

  • Don't migrate for the sake of migration. We only migrate questions because they are off-topic on the original site. It is perfectly possible for a question to be on-topic on multiple sites, but that is not a reason to migrate it elsewhere. As a general rule, if someone asks a question here, and it's on-topic here, it should stay here.

However, the UI doesn't make requirement 1 clear. The sequence goes…

  1. Click "close" or "flag".

    The dialog asks,

    ◉ Why should this question be closed?


    ◉ I am flagging this question because …
    ◉ it should be closed for another reason…

  2. Click "off-topic".

    One of the options is:

    This question belongs on another site in the Stack Exchange network

The UI does not require an off-topic reason to be specified — in fact, it prevents you from specifying an off-topic reason if you want to suggest a migration. Thus, the UI improperly suggests that "better fit elsewhere" is a valid reason for closing/migrating.

share|improve this question
Well, it is under the "off-topic" heading, thus implying the question is off-topic for that site. – hichris123 Mar 18 at 23:28
@hichris123 But at no point does it make you state why you think it's off-topic. – 200_success Mar 18 at 23:29
Example of this misconception – 200_success Nov 12 at 16:13

2 Answers 2

I propose to change the workflow so that a closure reason is required after suggesting migration. Namely,

  1. Click "close" or "flag".
  2. Click "off-topic".

    The dialog looks just like it does today, with one of the choices being

    ◉ This question belongs on another site in the Stack Exchange network

  3. Choose a migration target site.

    The dialog looks just like it does today. (I'd add emphasis that it needs to be a high-quality question.)

  4. Specify a closure reason.

    Flagging > Closing > Off-Topic > Migration > Closure Reason

    Why is this question off-topic for insert current site name here?

    ◎ Standard reason A
    ◎ Standard reason B
    ◎ Other (add a comment explaining what is wrong)

    Vote to migrate Cancel

    The migration flag is cancelled unless a closure reason is given.

One disadvantage of this proposal is that the thought process is a bit backwards: normally, one would classify a question as off-topic before suggesting migration.

share|improve this answer
"(I'd tweak it so that each site links to the /help/on-topic page, and emphasize that it needs to be a high-quality question.)" It used to do that at one point. Has that been lost again? – ChrisF Mar 18 at 21:30
@ChrisF You're right, it does link to /help/on-topic already. – 200_success Mar 18 at 21:43
This seems like a quite good approach to me, but I am not sure if it is the best solution. – Simon Forsberg Mar 18 at 22:32

I propose to change the workflow so that migration options are presented after choosing a closure reason.

  1. Click "off-topic".

    Choose a standard reason for closure, or enter a custom reason.

  2. Click Vote to Close.

    The UI would ask:

    Flagging > Closing > Off-Topic > Migration

    Would this be considered a high-quality question that is on-topic on another site?

    ◉ No, the question should simply be closed.
    Stack Overflow logo belongs on Stack Overflow
                      Q&A for professional and enthusiast programmers
    Super User logo belongs on Super User
                      Q&A for computer enthusiasts and power users

One disadvantage of this proposal is that the common case (simple closure without migration) requires an extra click to dismiss the migration dialog.

share|improve this answer
Why have you made 2 different answers? Couldn't you make them into one (i.e. This or this). – Tim Mar 18 at 21:25
@Tim because they are mutually exclusive proposals for rectifying the situation, to be voted on separately. Furthermore, the door is open for anyone (including myself) to suggest an even better solution. – 200_success Mar 18 at 21:27
I think there are way too many questions where this would not be relevant, so I think this would do more harm than good. – Simon Forsberg Mar 18 at 22:31

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