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StackExchange / Stack Overflow were built on the premise that serving the developer community at large would lead to a better, smarter Internet but in my opinion the path that you have chose to reach that goal is a terribly slow one.

The Stack communities are full of great knowledgeable answers. To make the Internet better and smarter it’s going to take more than just answers. It’s going to take understanding and comprehension of those answers. The Internet is full of young and old minds yearning to comprehend. Isn’t discussion part of learning? How do people discuss some of the answers they find on the Stack sites? Isn’t discussion contributing?

My feature request is to expand your website to a sister website called discussion.stackexchange.com, a place to discuss posts found on Stack sites in a more relaxed manner. By adding “Discuss this post on discussion.stackexchange” to the end of every thread like this mock up image:

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You have the site where you talk about unicorns, and the meta site where you talk about the site where you talk about unicorns. What is needed is a place where the common user can talk about the knowledge represented on unicorns.

Currently, there are two main option to "discuss" a post: the chat and comments.

The chat, while more open to discussion, requires 20 reputation points to take part in. Adding comments on the question itself, if it's not your question, would instead take 50 reputation points, and that is not even considering that comments aren't meant for extended discussion in the first place. The spur-of-the-moment users will never reach that because they don’t strive to gain a reputation on the site. The site is just there for them as a means to comprehension, nothing more.

What is my definition of the spur-of-the-moment user? The spur-of-the-moment user is a general person just that is here to find comprehension to a question, someone that is busy doing their own project but needed understanding on some topic. They are not here to gain reputation and probably won't interact a lot with votes or by posting new content. How can someone gain reputation on a subject they are just learning? Especially if they are in competition with other more qualified users.

This community is the place for the discussion of this knowledge, since this is where the knowledge is located, not Quora or reddit. You don't have to participate in it if you don't want to. Lots of people will participate because they want others to learn.

There is entire market of people that will participate. The experts don't have to moderate the forum. Forums themselves attract the type of people that love to moderate them. The experts aren't required to participate but they will.

As a side notice, I would like to point out that comments are still one of the most abused feature here, often being used as a way to discuss over a post in a more "forum like" way.

Honestly, comments are the single most abused feature of Stack Exchange. However, they are also a very important part of stack exchange. 2

I think that people are heavily abusing your comment feature to try to have a voice. They will continue to abuse it if you ignore them, but give them an outlet to speak and you will resolve one of your huge problems. The abuse will drop drastically and you can continue doing the others things you love, with much less hindrance.

For those that feel this request is unclear I'll break it down for you.

"My feature request is" that statement means that following it will be some words that state my request

"to expand your website to a sister website called discussion.stackexchange.com" means start a new web site that is called discussion.stackexchange.com

"a place to discuss posts found on Stack sites in a more relaxed manner" This web site will be a place where posts can be discussed in an atmosphere not as militarized as this site.

"By adding “Discuss this post on discussion.stackexchange” to the end of every thread" I think this sentence is very self-explanatory if you look at the mockup picture.

closed as unclear what you're asking by Josh Caswell, Ward, Glorfindel, gnat, Rory Alsop Oct 17 '16 at 8:24

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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I don't think that creating another site for discussions is a good idea. In my opinion chat is a good place for discussions.

  • Take it to chat, it requires 20 reputation points. The common user will never reach that because they don’t strive to gain a reputation on the site. The site is just there for them as a means to comprehension nothing more. – 20GT Oct 16 '16 at 14:19
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    @20GT Are you kidding? 20 reputation points is ridiculously small amount. You can earn that by getting two upvotes on your answers. – Michał Perłakowski Oct 16 '16 at 14:28
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    @Gothdo or 10 approved suggested-edits, those are even easier ... – rene Oct 16 '16 at 14:31
  • The common user is not answering questions or suggested-edits they are un-knowledgeable users. They are the common user like myself that is just looking for knowledge. – 20GT Oct 16 '16 at 14:52
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    @20GT As I wrote in my answer, over one million people on Stack Overflow have managed to get chat privileges, and I'm betting that many, many more have earned some rep. I really dispute your claims. – HDE 226868 Oct 16 '16 at 16:55
  • one million people compared to 6,205,952 users that's roughly 1 to 6 which does not make the chat user's common. – 20GT Oct 16 '16 at 19:34
  • @20GT Did you read my answer? I'm willing to bet that the others are folks who came, posted once, and left. If they stayed, they could easily earn rep. It's not that they couldn't, it's that they chose not to. – HDE 226868 Oct 16 '16 at 19:36
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Your suggestion relies on the premise that "common users" will not

  1. Earn the 20 rep needed to use chat.
  2. Earn the 50 rep needed to comment on posts.

I dispute this. Stack Overflow currently has over 160,000 pages of users. Over 30,000 of those pages contain users with at least 20 reputation points. Yes, that's less than 20% of all users. But I'm going to bet that the remaining 130,000 pages consist of people who have asked or answered maybe one or two questions, at most, and gotten a vote or two. If they post more - or edit, for instance - they can easily hit 20 rep, and then 50 rep.

At 36 users per page, that's over one million users who have managed to gain chat privileges - on Stack Overflow alone! I can guarantee you that not all of those users are "experts", and I can also guarantee you that most of those users are what you might call "common users". If they can do it with a little bit of effort, there's no reason why someone else shouldn't be able to.

Chat exists for a reason, and it's perfectly easy to get the rep needed to get there. Everyone starts from exactly 1 rep. Nobody goes in with an advantage - and the same applies for all Stack Exchange sites.

Ask, answer, edit, and you can get the discussion you want.

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tl;dr Stack Exchange doesn't need a site for discussions about the answers (or questions).

To make the Internet better and smarter it’s going to take more than just answers. It’s going to take understanding and comprehension of those answers.

That is true. We expect visitors to invest their time to understand and comprehend both the problem they have in their own context and how any of the answers found fit in, relate to or don't apply to their situation. Visitors who don't understand or comprehend an proposed solution have a different issue: they need to do more research or verify if they understand their own context correctly.

The Internet is full of young and old minds yearning to comprehend. Isn’t discussion part of learning? How do people discuss some of the answers they find on the stack web sites?

Yes, discussion can be a great part of learning. I have to assume you expect an discussion to be needed because either an answer or question you found on a Stack Exchange is unclear. There is no problem to ask a new question where you reference other questions or answers, explain how you think it is relevant to your specific case and then ask your new and unique question. By doing that you help extending the knowledge gathered here. Specially if you're inexperienced it can be extremely helpful to have questions that help those that have the answers to be precise and clear in their answers.

It is to expand your website to a sister website called discussion.stackexchange.com, a place to discuss posts found on Stack Exchange in a more relaxed manner.

Honestly, that model is not a good fit to gather and curate valuable knowledge that is useful for future visitors. Such sites, some call them forums, are more geared towards the needs of individuals. Although extremely useful for those that need help, not very much for future visitors and those future visitors is were we should aim for.

You expect more from the common user, forcing them to earn reputation to chat, but you don't feel obliged to discuss your knowledge freely. Don't you desire people to learn?

We're not forcing any one. We cater for all who have enough on Google hits or the Stack's own search engine. Those who are really invested do make those few suggested edits, or ask those great question, that will open up their ability to participate in and with the community. And sure, everybody is allowed to learn but that doesn't mean that the volunteers on this site should be spoon-feeding, teach, coach, educate those who are too lazy to give learning a serious try themselves. You learn at the edges of your knowledge. We are not going to explore where your edges are, that is up to you, by asking a decent question. From there we'll share what we know to the best of our abilities.

The common user is not answering questions or suggested-edits they are un-knowledgeable users. They are the common user like myself that is just looking for knowledge.

If you're just looking for knowledge you have found the right kind of sites. There is enormous amount of value hidden in all those posts and tag-wikis and documentation on Stack Overflow. If you want to transit from un-knowledgeable to noob you have to do the effort. Realizing something you've found is unclear is the first step. Running up to someone demanding or expecting they explain stuff to you is simply over-asking, if not rude.

If it really matters to you I would not assume that the volunteers here are unwilling or not prepared to share. The 8 years these sites exist it's users and communities have learned a lot on how to curate knowledge and make that accessible to huge numbers of users. For one thing we are pretty sure: the forum/thread/discussion format doesn't fit the Q/A model and the majority of users that answer questions here do so because of that format. Maybe it is worth to spend some time to understand why that is and why it makes sites like Stack Overflow high ranked in Google. It might turn out that the Q/A model is fine, even or maybe specially for users that are new to a certain topic.

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