Building an archive of deleted questions
There are two purposes an archive is needed: The closure of beta sites, and the deletion of old yet popular questions on Stackoverflow (and SuperUser and Serverfault if applicable).
One of the main purpose of StackExchange is to improve the web, by allowing great quality questions and answers to be written. One of the worst crimes of a website is to break links, that crime gets worse with the popularity of the content, and there is no denying that StackExchange is popular. The deletion of old questions on SO, and the closing of SE sites is sad, but understandably correct.
So move the questions to a readonly site called something like archive.stackexchange.com.
- Links remain intact, the old links can be forwarded to the new site
- Much less loss of data/content
- All the old and now considered off topic can be removed from SO without any issues/controversy at all.
- Cost, even though readonly the site would still need to be run (obviously)*
- Somewhat contrary to the idea of SE sites which is to create communities of experts, although it helps maintainer the great SE community (and the web in general)
*though I believe that deleted questions are still available to 10k users? So they are still being stored and accessed?
To reduce clutter, the questions available from closed sites should only be archived if they have an answer, and with maybe at least one vote on either the question or answer, or if there is more than a certain number of views