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When a site has a question that could benefit from the expertise on another SE site, it makes sense to go to that other site's meta or chat and ask for help. For example, the Bicycles site had a question a while back that could have benefitted from some people who had some physics chops.

We now have a question that could benefit from some knowledge in chemistry. (The question may or may not be closed as a duplicate, but that's another issue.) However, there's no chemistry site (yet).

Leaving aside the question of whether it would do any good: Would it be considered good form to post to the Chemistry proposal and ask for help?


Edit, in case I'm not being clear: I'm not suggesting one would go to the Area 51 proposal and ask "Hey, how is vegetable oil different chemically from chain lube?" I'm suggesting it would make sense to go there and simply post a link to the existing question: "We have a question about chemistry and lubrication, folks here might be interested in helping out."

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1 Answer 1

No, the Area 51 proposal area is not intended for asking questions.

The sites you see there haven't been created yet. Once the site is in beta, it might be a good idea to ask the question on the site, but not while it's still a proposal.

The section where you post questions is intended for discussion about the site itself. Things like "Should this proposal be merged with the 'Biochemistry' proposal?"

If you're interested in the Chemistry site, please commit to supporting it! Personally, I'd really love to see that one get started.


With regards to your edit... That looks suspiciously like spam to me. And I'd remove it, were I to be given the power to do such things on that site. Again, I ask, what value does such a post add to a site intended as a staging area for new Q&A sites?

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I'm well aware of the purpose of the Area 51 proposals. However, it occurs that the people there would likely have at least some knowledge of chemistry. –  Neil Fein May 1 '11 at 5:12
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@Neil: Of course they can be expected to have some knowledge of chemistry. The problem is, that's completely irrelevant. It's not what the site is designed for, such a question will be closed as off-topic almost as soon as a moderator sees it, and you're just distracting from the whole purpose of Area 51: as a staging area for new sites. The beta hasn't started yet, you're not supposed to ask topical questions. –  Cody Gray May 1 '11 at 5:15
    
In response to your edit that's in response to my edit: "Spam" is generally trying to sell something, this would be trying to improve an existing Stack Exchange question. (If this is spam, than when we post on forums publicizing SE sites, that's span too.) It wouldn't add any value to the Area 51 directly, but attracting users to a question they might not have seen otherwise adds value to Bicycles and, by extension, the SE network as a whole. A better way to do this within the network might be to just post about it in the Lounge chatroom. –  Neil Fein May 1 '11 at 20:24
    
@Neil: That's too literal a definition of spam. I meant more as in unsolicited noise, not necessarily specific to marketing. In some senses, you're trying to "market" the Bicycles site, but I'm not sure that's a crime within the SE network, as you rightfully point out. But the point is that such doesn't belong on unrelated proposals on Area 51. I'm not sure why this is so difficult to understand. Do you think it'd be appropriate to edit a Wikipedia article on complex ions to ask the question? Chemistry experts are bound to see it. The point is, they're not bound to appreciate it. –  Cody Gray May 2 '11 at 7:02
    
But yes, chatrooms are a completely appropriate forum for this type of thing. People expect to see noise there, and if they don't like it, they can simply ignore it. You didn't ask about chatrooms. –  Cody Gray May 2 '11 at 7:02

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