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I know I've complained about the fragmentation here before, but I'm a little surprised about facebook.stackoverflow.com questions feeding directly into the main list of questions on stackoverflow.com. I'd like stronger fragmentation here. :)

The question that brings me here is this one:

https://stackoverflow.com/questions/8425097/facebook-developer-account-disabled-lack-of-communication

It's a well-written rant by a guy upset about his Facebook developer account being closed. I can sympathize. But SO is being treated as a Facebook support contact all too frequently already and having a site with facebook right in the name appears to only further the impression that anyone here can do anything at all about Facebook support problems.

Is this fellow's rant "on-topic" for facebook.stackoverflow.com? It sure wouldn't be on-topic on the main stackoverflow.com, but the one feeds directly into the other these days...

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  • 1
    Funny, came here to post exactly the same.
    – Gajus
    Dec 8 '11 at 2:00
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    I wasn't aware such a site existed, but I and many others frequently vote to close these types of questions as off topic anyways. I guess they just haven't been getting migrated.
    – animuson StaffMod
    Dec 8 '11 at 2:03
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    It looks like someone needs to put up a request to burn the support tag too while we're at it. Dec 8 '11 at 2:09
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The questions that are on-topic on facebook.stackoverflow.com are the same that are on-topic on stackoverflow.com. This is because the first is not a separate Stack Exchange site, but it's a site inside another site, or a mini site.

If you look at the FAQ, you will notice that the criteria about the acceptable questions are the same that are valid for Stack Overflow, with the difference that in the first, questions must have at least a Facebook tag. For the rest, questions that are not about one of the following topics are not on-topic:

  • a specific programming problem
  • a software algorithm
  • software tools commonly used by programmers
  • practical, answerable problems that are unique to the programming profession

The last point could make you think that the question you are referring could be allowed, but the FAQ also adds that you should ask "practical, answerable questions based on actual problems that you face." While the question is about a problem he is having, I feel that it is not answerable, as only Facebook can answer to the questions the OP is asking.

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    Yep. fb.so is more or less the same as viewing the [facebook] tag on SO.
    – user154510
    Dec 8 '11 at 2:25
  • 3
    This is the correct view. Anything not on topic for SO is also off-topic for FB.SO, even if it's unambiguously about Facebook. This has always been the case. Dec 8 '11 at 2:56
2

Two articles of relevance here:

Personally I feel that this should obviously have been a separate Stack Exchange site and they sold the Stack Overflow user base to Facebook as part of the deal.

This is absolutely on topic for the official Facebook developer support channel. It is not on topic for Stack Overflow. These should be different Stack Exchange sites.

I feel the correct approach is to close these questions as off-topic if we see them on Stack Overflow. If they keep getting closed, perhaps the two sites will be unlinked. It's unfair to the people with legitimate Facebook grievances like this guy, but it's unfair to expect Stack Overflow users to double as tech support for a giant company like Facebook.

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There needs to be a meta.facebook.stackoverflow.com, where developers can interface with facebook and post bug reports, feature requests, discuss developer issues, etc. These are support inquiries the old facebook developer's forums used to cover, but now there's no place for them.

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    Of course that would require someone at facebook to stop rolling in cash and give and flying hoot about the developers...
    – Pollyanna
    Dec 8 '11 at 3:00
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    Facebook Stack Overflow is not about general facebook support, nor the non-writing code parts of developer support. We indicate this on the "How To Ask" page shown to every new user. The appropriate "meta" is the Facebook Developers Group. Dec 8 '11 at 3:36
  • It's quite obvious that users are going to attempt to use SO that way anyway. This interface beats a facebook group for developer support (non programming) issues.
    – Pollyanna
    Dec 8 '11 at 5:17

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