I work for a software company. We have a number of closed-source products, one open-source product and an ecosystem of partners and application developers who use it to develop their applications.
One day, a member of our developer community might ask a question on StackOverflow, "How do I do this using your API?" What should we do: reply on StackOverflow or create a Q&A or a discussion forum elsewhere?
Here are my own thoughts: From the StackOverflow FAQ: "...if your question generally covers a specific programming problem, a software algorithm, software tools commonly used by programmers, matters that are unique to the programming profession..." Since our product is not a "software tool commonly used by developers", I'm leaning towards not using StackOverflow for such questions and taking our discussions elsewhere. It doesn't seem to me that any reputation points I might get from answering such questions would be honestly earned. On the other hand, what is so great about StackOverflow that developers dumbfounded by some obscure API can ask a question and find someone who has solved that problem before them.
ADDED: Thanks everyone for good answers! My takeaways:
- asking such questions is OK
- if they ask, we'll answer
- we need to have our own forum