Stack Overflow is based on the genial ideology for all tech geeks and freaks: the information should be free. People there share technological insights for free, even if they've got to pay to get them. It's fantastic! And Stack Overflow is the black horse of the Stack Exchange Network.
Based on Stack Overflow's success, Stack Exchange team has started other sites, about other topics. However, they don't work as well. I've made a little rant about it. But it's primarily ideological: on the sites about Workplace or Expatriates, there are users who not only disbelieve in the concept of free information sharing, but also actively disturb it.
They mostly hate sharing information about law. Law is complicated, and lawyers are charging a lot. But in most cases, you don't need a lawyer but a simple fact. For example, in Germany, it's illegal for the landlord to go into the apartment you rent. If you simply know that fact, you can spare yourself much problems. And asking 'is X allowed/legal' is not asking about advice, it's asking about facts. Just like asking, 'what value does function x in framework y expect?'.
However, some people are afraid, that if such knowledge was shared, some people would lose their income. And they are taking actions that are killing the spirit of the information freedom. And, to my deep disappointment, the moderators are taking no actions because moderators are acting according to the 'spirit' of the site. And if that spirit is hostile to the geek ideology of 'information wants to be free', let it be so.
Why is it such a problem? Well, the legal aspects in programming can be normally ignored, but for example, on workplace, rental, immigration, almost everything is about the law. So every non-chatty question on workplace would touch legal issues. The same is for Expatriates. And many other sites are in proposal state, but I doubt they'll succeed under these circumstances.
What is causing this ideological inconsistency between various Stack Exchange sites? Aren't they operated by the same people? What allowed so few to enforce their rule that some information should be kept secret (and available only for money) although it is based on publicly available sources? And why has the resistance to them failed?
Well, on Stack Overflow everyone stating that, for example, every question about jQuery should be closed because it can be answered reading the documentation, W3 documents and source code would be burned alive... But on some other sites the geeks have capitulated...
I don't want to change anything because I don't believe it's possible under current circumstances, I want only to understand WHY.
And no, I don't care about downvotes anymore.