It's pretty well established that crappy migrations (mostly originating from Stack Overflow) are a recurring problem here on Stack Exchange.

Some have suggested eliminating migrations completely, while others have suggested banning repeat-crap-migrators from voting to migrate in the future. For various reasons, those solutions are not ideal (much as I would love the latter). I would therefore like to propose an intermediate solution: add a "recent (incoming) migrations" review queue to /review.

Recent migrations have a tendency to exhibit one or more problems:

  • Not actually being on topic
  • Not being a "good question"
  • Being a "bad question"
  • Being unclear, vague, etc.
  • Not having been edited in the slightest before getting
    chucked across the fence to be another site's problem
  • Glaring grammatical errors
  • Being crap

crappy migrations

Oftentimes, these problems could be pre-empted by some simple editing or thought of "what's on topic over yonder" by the people frantically hitting "close," but obviously that doesn't happen all the time, so here we are.

By having migrations show up in a review queue, we have the potential to help the user asking the question and the other members of the site:

  • If the question was migrated incorrectly, hopefully it'll be sent to the right place sooner
  • If the question is altogether off-topic or not a good fit for the Stack Exchange format, the migration can be rejected before the user has to go make an account on yet another site
  • The sooner a bad migration gets edited into shape, the more likely it is to get a good answer
  • If a question doesn't belong, then the sooner it gets rejected, the less likely users are to waste their time on it

So, how would it work?

Follow the same format as other "review tasks". There would be the following buttons:

  • Looks good - greyed out until the user upvotes, then dismisses from their queue. If a question gets 3 "looks good" votes, then it's out of the queue and ready to go

  • Improve - opens the inline editor, and allows the reviewer to make it better.

  • Off topic - casts a close vote (if 3K+) or flag (if <3K)

  • Low quality - opens close dialog with standard reasons (if 3K+)

  • Not sure - moves to the next item without taking any action

This would help everyone - the people asking, the people answering, and the people who get frustrated when the 20th crap migration of the day rolls in!

  • 3
  • Mods/10k? already have access to a /migrated list. given the influx of crap reviews, I'm not inclined to have another review queue Commented Oct 9, 2012 at 5:51
  • @Sathya: Not 10k, only mods Commented Oct 9, 2012 at 5:54
  • 2
    @ManishEarth 10k too. It's <domain>/tools?s=1&tab=migrated Commented Oct 9, 2012 at 6:04
  • @JeffFerland: Cool! I never knew that! Commented Oct 9, 2012 at 6:09
  • 1
    @Sathya: if you have plenty of 10k users this may be useful but when you only have 60 or so many of whom aren't active it's just not sufficient to stem the tide.
    – user147520
    Commented Oct 9, 2012 at 8:20
  • Would retagging (one of the most needed actions after migration) be considered a regular edit, or as its own action?
    – AviD
    Commented Oct 9, 2012 at 9:20
  • 1
    This could usefully be combined with questions with pending migration votes. Commented Oct 9, 2012 at 11:49
  • Why not combine the Off Topic and Low Quality buttons into just Close? I don't understand the reason for separating them like that. Also, this should only be available to users with the close-vote privilege on the site. You're complaining that people migrate there without knowing about the site, but you'd let a little 15-rep user access this queue and flag those migrated questions, when they still may not even know if it belongs there? You can easily get 101 reputation on any site...
    – animuson StaffMod
    Commented Oct 9, 2012 at 12:19
  • @animuson that's a good point. They could probably be combined into the same button.
    – nhinkle
    Commented Oct 9, 2012 at 15:56
  • 1
    @animuson: a user with 15 rep on a site has more engagement than someone with 101 rep.
    – user147520
    Commented Oct 10, 2012 at 19:52
  • @Iain: That's not the point. Anyone who has 200 rep on another site automatically starts with 101, and they'd have access to the review queue, and probably with no engagement whatsoever. Even at 15, they have nowhere near enough experience with that site to be deciding if migrations are good or bad there.
    – animuson StaffMod
    Commented Oct 10, 2012 at 23:11


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