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Do I have to commit to participate in the beta or will I be able to do it regardless?

I don't want to commit to some proposals but I'd like to participate in them (with no strings attached).

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I was thinking the same. I'd like to participate in the Photography and Photographic Editing (and perhaps 1 or 2 others), but I don't have enough time or knowledge to be able to commit. –  ChrisF Jun 17 '10 at 14:31
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Same, but with Web Apps. –  C. Ross Jun 17 '10 at 14:43

3 Answers 3

up vote 8 down vote accepted

All Stack Exchange sites will start out with a 1-week private beta, followed by a public beta available to everyone.

The point of the private beta is to give the site a week's worth of questions before opening it up to the public. All committed users will be invited to the private beta, and they'll be able to invite others.

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It would nice if we could "half" commit to a site. Say we'll turn up and do what we can to answer questions and perhaps ask one or two, but not the full "commitment". This would bump the commitment percentage half (or a third) of the full commitment value. It would also allow us to refer others. –  ChrisF Jun 17 '10 at 15:54
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You want to follow, not commit ;-) –  Ivo Flipse Jun 17 '10 at 16:27
    
@Ivo - I'm already following. I think that the site is should exist but I don't have the knowledge/time to do a full commit (asking "expert" questions particularly), but will visit and answer to the best of my ability. So having a "half" commit would show that and give the site a bit of a boost. –  ChrisF Jun 17 '10 at 16:37
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It would be nice to have a way to follow a site (to receive email announcement, etc) but not create a confusing web of options (commit vs half-commit vs follow vs...). –  Robert Cartaino Jun 17 '10 at 16:43
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Perhaps following should do that. –  ChrisF Jun 17 '10 at 16:55
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"I think i want to commit, but I'm not sure..." –  Jaydles Jun 17 '10 at 16:55
    
Will there be a way to ask to be invited other than post it here on meta? Perhaps you could be invited if you're following it (but not committed)? –  jmfsg Jun 17 '10 at 17:46
    
I'll be willing to do what I can for proposals I'm not committed to & if anyone wants an invite to the one I am let me know. –  ChrisF Jun 17 '10 at 17:55
    
@ChrisF I think you know more about Web Apps than I do, I just think we need such a site and not just for the experts out there –  Ivo Flipse Jun 17 '10 at 19:38
    
I've come across a site that is in private Beta, and I want to 'attach' to it, so that I can start using it when it becomes public. But I can't find any way to do so! I can't log into it or commit or follow it. Please provide a way to connect with the site so that when it is public, I'll know! –  Glen Little Jul 14 '10 at 16:16

It seems counterproductive to limit participation in the beta, given that the problems getting sites going in the past have been "ghost town" issues, not roving troll ones.

In the event the system did limit participation, I'd tend to think you'd still allow anyone proven or vouched for to participate:

  • Anyone referrred by a committer, including those referred after the beta starts
  • Anyone with rep of XX or more on any trilogy or SE 1.0 site
  • Etc.
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SE 1.0 sites do not count towards anything here... –  jmfsg Jun 17 '10 at 14:27
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@Juan, right, but here I'm just saying that if there WAS some sense that the beta should not be open to those in the know, it would seem counterproductive not to allow someone who demonstrated prior commitment to say, phtographr.info to participate in the new Photo SE just becuase he/she didn't commit before it went beta. –  Jaydles Jun 17 '10 at 14:30
    
I think it should be open to anyone, but I read somewhere that there'll be a private beta and a public beta –  jmfsg Jun 17 '10 at 14:55
    
@Juan Manual: Update: We recently decided to conduct a really short private beta for Committers to get everything set up prior to launch. See updated answer here: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/53989/… –  Robert Cartaino Jun 17 '10 at 17:45

My expectation is that as soon as one site goes into beta, you'll have your commitment back so you can commit to another site. If this is the case, and you pay attention (you get emails as things you're following and committing to progress) then you can immediately place the commitment onto another proposal as soon as the first goes into beta.

Of course, that means you're committing to it.

If you aren't interested in committing to it, then, quite frankly, the beta isn't for you. Wait a little while and it will be ready for people who aren't committed to use. Alternately, get someone who has committed to invite you to the beta.

I doubt it's going to be hard to get into the beta if one really wants to.

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You won't have your commitment back for at least 3 months (I read somewhere from Jeff) –  jmfsg Jun 17 '10 at 20:56
    
Really? Eep! I'm a man of commitment, but never could only three sites satisfy me! –  Adam Davis Jun 17 '10 at 22:30
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3 Months is quite a bit harsh. –  Noctrine Jun 22 '10 at 13:44

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