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SmokeDetector is a bot which is run on several sites. (I think that it is run on the sites from SO trilogy all sites - in Tavern on Meta, AskUbuntu, Math.SE, English.SE, maybe some other sites.) It seems to be a useful tool for several purposes.

Occasionally, users might have questions related to this bot. I have seen that such questions have already been asked here. (For example: How can we get bot running in some particular chatrooms? What some particular message posted by the bot mean? How does it get the list of blacklisted sites, phrases, users? Can some commands be sent to the bot and if yes, can anybody do that? Which chatrooms do use this bot and what to do if users of some site want to start using it in their chat room? I guess there are many reasonable questions which could be asked by a user who does not have much previous experience with this bot.)

What would be the correct place to ask question about SmokeDetector? Are such question on topic on this meta?

Would it be better to ask them in some chat room? Or completely elsewhere?

Additionally, if questions about SmokeDetector are allowed to be asked here, is this topic important enough to have a separate tag? Or maybe tagging such question with something like and would be good enough? (In connection with tags I will add there semm to be two comment spellings smokedetector and smoke detector. So somebody searching for posts about this bot would have to use at least these two possibilities to find all relevant posts using the built-in search.)

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    Smokey also posts in the SOCVR room on Stack Overflow – rene Jan 8 '16 at 20:09
  • Yes, from the answer I have learned about SmokeDetector's wiki, which also lists the chatrooms. – Martin Jan 8 '16 at 20:48
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SmokeDetector is neither owned nor operated by Stack Exchange, so this isn't the place to ask most questions about it. From the Help Center:

Meta Stack Exchange is where users like you discuss bugs, features, and support issues that affect the software powering all 151 Stack Exchange communities.

SmokeDetector is not part of that software.

Note that the other 3 questions you referenced are not primarily about SmokeDetector.


But, questions about how SmokeDetector is, or could, affect Stack Exchange are on topic.

For example, from Balpha ♦ (A prominent Stack Exchange employee) :

  • "Smokey seems to work great, could he be integrated into the site (maybe as a review queue)?"
  • "Half of the messages in our chat room are 'sdfpu' etc., which turns away newcomers. Should the bot move to a different room?"
  • "A moderator suspended Smokey for two years, why?"

etc.

For most questions or issues about SmokeDetector:

  1. Check SmokeDetector's wiki.
  2. Ask a question in chat. The "Charcoal HQ" room may be best.
  3. Browse the source code on GitHub.
  4. Open pull requests, if appropriate.
  5. Raise an issue on the Github page.
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    I would say that certain questions about Smokie can be on topic. Bug reports etc. probably aren't, you're right, but I wouldn't generally dismiss it as off-topic. – balpha Jan 7 '16 at 5:56
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    @balpha, please give an example that would be on topic AND primarily about SmokeDetector (and not this question), and not reporting misbehavior of Smokey and crew. – Awesome Poodles Jan 7 '16 at 5:57
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    @AwesomePoodles Would you consider this previously posted question on topic? Why does Stack Exchange run a school for smoke detectors? EDIT: Probably this falls under "not primarily about SmokeDetector". (In any case, thanks for several useful references, mainly the wiki where I found some information I was unaware of. Virtual +1 for that - I am somewhat hesitant to vote on your post, since I want to leave it to more experienced user to decide what is and is not on topic here.) – Martin Jan 7 '16 at 6:01
  • "Smokie seems to work great, could he (she?) be integrated into the site (maybe as a review queue)?" -- "Half of the messages in our chat room are 'sdfpu' etc., which turns away newcomers. Should the bot move to a different room?" -- "A moderator suspended Smokie for two years, why?" – balpha Jan 7 '16 at 6:01
  • @balpha, thanks. Rolled that into the answer. – Awesome Poodles Jan 7 '16 at 6:12

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