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I remember in an early podcast or blog entry Jeff mentioned that one of his goals was to encourage people to write more about subjects they were good at. People who might not want to commit to a full blog, but who wouldn't otherwise have a convenient place to put their words.

How many people do something similar? What can SO do to encourage this?

Can I post tips instead of questions?

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3 Answers 3

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Stack Overflow is supposed to share blog like qualities as the below Venn diagram illustrates. Unfortunately, the close police often limit this part of Stack Overflow the tiny asterisk in the middle.

enter image description here

As an example I posted a short opinion seeking responses on enterprise mobile application development marked the post as subjective and community wiki but still received 2 close votes. As evidenced from the excellent responses I received, more than a few members of the community thought my post worth responding to. At this point I don't have a blog and even if I did I doubt that I would have the readership that would generate the kind of response I received.

I reply to your question to illustrate that there are those in the community who (IMHO) are missing one of the key differentiating features of Stack Overflow as it is the combination of various web concepts that has led to the site's success.

One option for encouraging awareness would be that when a user votes to close a question that is marked as community wiki and tagged as subjective there's some sort of awareness message.

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The problem with your reasoning is that you can post just about anything that isn't spam or blatantly offensive and you will still get 3-5 people to respond. Just because they respond doesn't mean its appropriate for this site. –  AnonJr Apr 24 '10 at 1:50
    
@anonjr the curse of popularity. We want to transfer some of that "smart users who will answer anything!" to stack exchange 2.0 -- let's figure out what sites we as a community want to exist, and make them happen. blog.stackexchange.com/post/518474918/stack-exchange-2-0 –  Jeff Atwood Apr 24 '10 at 2:05

I think that only applies in the context of Q&A -- if you have a blog entry that's along the lines of ...

I had this problem, and it sucked! I'm going to document the solution I found, at great personal cost to my sanity, so nobody else (including, and most of all, myself) has to suffer like that again!

... and not ...

I'd now like to share an undirected, rambling rant about topic X with you

... then it's a good fit. For example my latest blog post is a fairly good fit to Q&A, where Q is

Why don't the emails I send from my code reliably arrive in the mailboxes of the users I send them to?

The answer is kinda long, though, which makes it a better fit for a blog entry than a direct Q&A. I will, however, definitely be referring the many SO users who have that question to this blog entry!

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Hey Jeff, how's the family? –  Ólafur Waage Apr 23 '10 at 23:34
    
Funny that you say that as I just did: stackoverflow.com/questions/2702376/… –  ahsteele Apr 23 '10 at 23:46
    
So you're saying something more like this - smarterware.org/5530/how-to-uninstall-xp-antispyware - assuming you don't have a blog of your own to begin with? (and posting to the more relevant site, natch) –  AnonJr Apr 24 '10 at 1:46
    
@anonjr you still want to quote enough (a reasonable subset of just the essential bits) that the post is useful even if the backing hyperlink goes away. –  Jeff Atwood Apr 24 '10 at 2:04
    
@Jeff In order to post a blog-like answer (as in the mail delivery case) you have to find a fitting question on the site. You wouldn't post both the question and the answer yourself? Right? –  Alexandre Jasmin Sep 13 '11 at 9:06
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@alex no, that's not so; see blog.stackoverflow.com/2011/07/… –  Jeff Atwood Sep 13 '11 at 9:10

No, but I use Meta as a pseudo facebook.

poke

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SUPER MEGA VAMPIRE ZOMBIE POKE!!!!1! plzzz join my Stack Overflow Mob and be my Stack Overfow FarmVille NEIGHBOR!! –  Jeff Atwood Apr 24 '10 at 2:09
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Jeff Atwood discovered a bunch of humans hiding in a nearby forest in ZombieVille. So many delicious brains. Click here to join the feast! 3 people like this. Like * Dislike * Comment –  Pëkka Apr 24 '10 at 10:14

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