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This question seems to be off topic as it is completely not programming related, but there is nowhere to put it. What should be done? I'm considering starting a proposal to help folks specifically with App Store questions. Is that overkill?

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If it's off topic, it's off topic. – ChrisF Mar 27 '11 at 13:44
Did Apple close down their forums? That's where it belongs of course. – Uphill Luge Mar 27 '11 at 13:48
@Hans folks like to discuss those questions here, where they are more likely to get a quick succinct answer. – Moshe Mar 27 '11 at 13:50
Which will quickly end when SO is overrun with off topic questions. – Uphill Luge Mar 27 '11 at 13:54
@Hans I don't understand your last comment. There are over 690 questions tagged [AppStore] they are either incorrectly tagged or off topic. I think that warrants a proposal at the very least. – Moshe Mar 27 '11 at 13:59
"folks like to discuss those questions here, where they are more likely to get a quick succinct answer" is what's in it for the asker. Suggesting that off-topic questions are OK, 'cause the asker really want the SO audience puts their desires above those of everyone using the site (which after-all has an agreed upon scope). It's rude. Very rude. – dmckee Mar 27 '11 at 19:35
@dnckee who is being rude? – Moshe Mar 27 '11 at 19:45
What @dmckee said. I could probably get some great barbecue recipes on SO... – Shog9 Mar 27 '11 at 19:46
@dmckee precisely. Which is why I'm propsig a separate site - so that we can expand the SE system to other areas and topics. – Moshe Mar 27 '11 at 19:47
up vote 2 down vote accepted

The question is on topic, and is no different from a question on setting up an installation program so your software installs correctly. The app store is merely a corporate installation program.

There are aspects that would be less on topic, such as questions about the licensing agreement one has to sign, but questions about bundle identifiers and such, which are directly handled in the project files of the program itself, are most assuredly on topic.

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It's different from an install program in the sense that there are variable, non-technical factors that will result in rejection. If the question concerns these, it's hard to argue it can even be answered (authoritatively, or conclusively). – Shog9 Mar 27 '11 at 18:29
@shog9 Questions about whether an app will be rejected or not are sometimes on topic and sometimes not. There is documentation that indicates certain types of apps, and certain code used in apps will be rejected. These are hard, objective topics directly relevant to programming. There could be questions asked about the app store that are off topic, as you suggest, such as why an app is taking so long to review. Not every question about the app store is viable here, and I'm not arguing that. I'm arguing that most of the questions asked that this op says are off topic are actually on topic. – Adam Davis Mar 27 '11 at 18:40
In other words, it's not fair or wise to blanket statement say all app store questions are off topic. – Adam Davis Mar 27 '11 at 18:42
@Adam: I can appreciate that some questions can be objectively answered when the criteria are well-documented and uniformly enforced. However, your argument that this is "no different from [...] setting up an installation program" doesn't hold water... Unless perhaps your installation was to be the target of a review board prior to implementation... – Shog9 Mar 27 '11 at 18:55
@Adam this question is off topic. It says nothing about programming whatsoever. Questions about Apple's metadata parsers and guidelines are not programming related. – Moshe Mar 27 '11 at 19:48
@Shog9 The truth here is that many of Apples policies can't be explained, as you said. However, many people ask for others who have had experience with the same problem. – Moshe Mar 27 '11 at 19:49
@Moshe so if I had a question about how to correctly configure an install shield setup so my particular program would install correctly, you would say that installer questions are off topic? Please refer to the FAQ: software tools commonly used by programmers, and matters that are unique to the programming profession are both specifically permitted. If the use of Xcode to set the bundle identifier so an installation program will work is not a software tool, and not unique to programming, then nothing is. Yes, we need to keep a strong focus on programming, but let's not go off the deep end! – Adam Davis Mar 27 '11 at 21:39
@shog9 please carefully review the question Moshe linked to. It asks How the bundle name, the project name, and the app name as submitted to the app store are related, and whether they can be different. It's very objective in reference to whether it matters to apple or not. The settings are part of the programming project itself. It's unique to programming. It's about tools programmers will use. It's not anywhere close to being "baby names for programmers", and I think it's terrible to split hairs so finely that we are even considering closing such questions. – Adam Davis Mar 27 '11 at 21:46
@AdamDavis fair points. But setting up the bundle settings is not the same as configuring a installshield set up – Moshe Mar 27 '11 at 22:17
@Adam: I don't have any particular beef with this specific question.. However, the fact that you have to call out aspects that would be "less on-topic" speaks to the vast difference between these questions and... installer questions. Like it or not, there are plenty of App Store questions that SO has no business trying to answer (same as we have no business trying to answer "What would my boss do if I..." questions). InstallShield may seem like a sentient (even malevolent) entity at times, but it is not. And I honestly don't know where you got "baby names". – Shog9 Mar 28 '11 at 2:41

I've created a proposal for App Store related questions. If you are an iOS developer, please check this proposal out. If you are not an iOS developer, feel free to mention it to posters who are asking about App Store related questions. You can find the proposal here.

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You waited a whole...12 minutes? – Michael Mrozek Mar 27 '11 at 18:24
@MichaelMrozek yea. Why? – Moshe Mar 27 '11 at 19:44
You can't post a "should I do this?" discussion, wait 12 minutes, and then say "discussion over, I did it". And actually, now that I checked area 51, it looks like you proposed the community 4 minutes after posting this -- it seems like you just wanted to promote your new A51 community here – Michael Mrozek Mar 27 '11 at 19:55
@MichaelMrozek I just thought of it after posting here. I guess I did jump a bit... – Moshe Mar 27 '11 at 21:37

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