I've just flagged this question for cross-posting (to/from an external site, not within the SE-framework), and indicated in a comment that I'd done so.

I got a comment back, that there was nothing wrong with that - and looking at the referenced questions coming up as I type this, I can see that the line is not exactly clear. Examples here and here for two opposite stances on this.

So my question is: What is right? In the question I originally flagged, it is easy to google all three questions the user has currently asked and find it on other sites.

Personally, I would prefer to know that a question has also been asked elsewhere, but I would like to know the current perception on this.

  • As stated in the question you linked, there really is no problem in doing so. Danger is that you'd end up with one answered question and no answers on others sites. If you get an answer on an external site, just make sure to add the answer here, if allowed by the host site and following their attribution requirements.
    – Bart
    Apr 3 '13 at 15:48
  • The examples you cite contradict your flag... what's your specific problem with cross-posting? I don't see how it affects SE? Apr 3 '13 at 15:49
  • 2
    I think the OP is implying that it's disrepectful of our time to multi-post. Like calling five cab companies and going with the one that comes first. Imagine spending 30 minutes (or more) researching and writing up a nice answer, only to find that the OP already got help somewhere else and isn't going to come back and read your reply.
    – JimmyPena
    Apr 3 '13 at 20:25
  • The questions you linked don't appear to have opposite stances on this. They all says it's okay. This has been asked before many times, voting to close as a duplicate because I don't see any merit in rehashing it. Master list of dupes: Why is cross-posting wrong (on an external site)?, Does a "dupe" on another (non-SE/SO) site warrant a vote to close?, Is it wrong to ask the same question elsewhere?
    – Cody Gray
    Apr 4 '13 at 1:01
  • Thanks for the replies. I agree that the two questions doesn't take as opposite stances as I originally thought. One main difference is that there aren't consistent expectations regarding whether an OP is obliged to maintain updates and answers across all sites. But a policy would be impossible to enforce anyway. I think what irked me in this case was that that the OP hadn't even bothered to remove the "posted 3 hours ago" from the other site, indicating exactly what Jimmy Pena writes above.
    – user213634
    Apr 4 '13 at 6:01

We don't mind. If the OP can manage looking at 3 sites and answer users question and clarification requests, that's fine by me.


There are two cases here: The answer exists already on SO, or it does not. If it does, then the best way to handle it is to flag a duplicate of an internal SO quetsion, even if it's a cross-post.

If it doesn't, then regardless of the cross-posting status, the question's answer is welcome here. It may help future users.

Either way, whether or not a post is a cross-post is irrelevant.