I noticed that some of the SE sites simply declined in terms of new posts in the last several years.

Is there any analysis of what these sites are, and reasons why that happened? What would be the destiny of these sites, if that decline continues?

  • 1
    In theory a site could close if it falls under the minimum health stats as seen on Area 51. I suppose a site gets closed if there is no-one left to raise and handle flags.
    – rene
    Dec 2 '20 at 11:43
  • 3
    From what I observed personally, new sites were proposed due to the hype train, then when the hype ended (or some realized that the strict Q&A format were not suitable for their need), only few stayed. Though, SE did promise that as long as the site is still moderated, it will stay open. Otherwise, the site might be closed (not read-only, but removed from the existence) Dec 2 '20 at 12:00
  • 1
    @rene Could you perhaps give a link to health stats you mentioned, I have the hard time finding them... Thanks in advance! Dec 2 '20 at 15:39
  • You might be interestd in meta.stackexchange.com/questions/346812/…
    – mdewey
    Dec 2 '20 at 15:43
  • @mdewey Yup, a very interesting question, and queries too. Thanks! Dec 2 '20 at 15:50
  • @AleksandarM on Area 51 each site has a page: area51.stackexchange.com/proposals/106955/quantum-computing that list their stats.
    – rene
    Dec 2 '20 at 15:54
  • I would participate far more on low-traffic sites like WebApps if I could use my SO/SuperUser reputation and privileges. Gets far too annoying to be low-rep on every new site.
    – pkamb
    Dec 2 '20 at 17:17
  • @mdewey Seeing a 7 month old post refer to the pandemic as current at time of writing just makes me sad about the current state of things, and about how long this all has stretched on.
    – zcoop98
    Dec 3 '20 at 1:04
  • 1
    Here you can see the main indicators for every site on SE network : stackexchange.com/sites
    – Rubén
    Dec 3 '20 at 1:09
  • "What would be the destiny of these sites, if that decline continues?" Predicting the future is a bit difficult, but if the decline continues then nobody will ask or answer there anymore, that much seems clear. And if nobody uses a service typically it will be discontinued because of financial reasons. It would be the abyss I think for these sites (not for the content though, that is stored away).
    – Trilarion
    Dec 4 '20 at 22:02

Is there any analysis of what these sites are

Users with enough reputations can view site statistics on https://[SE name].stackexchange.com/site-analytics, e.g. https://softwarerecs.stackexchange.com/site-analytics:

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or https://medicalsciences.stackexchange.com/site-analytics:

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or https://opendata.stackexchange.com/site-analytics

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and reasons why that happened?

I think this could be explained by a variety of reasons that don't help attract good questioners and answerers:

  • Decent questions getting downvoted, closed, or removed.
  • Low-quality questions or comments.
  • Lack of answers (e.g., https://softwarerecs.stackexchange.com/ has an answer rate of ~50%, not even taking into account all the deleted questions)
  • Competitions from other QA websites such as Reddit and Quora.
  • Some SE decisions that pissed off a large amount of regular users (License, Monica, etc.).
  • SE fragmentation resulting in websites having great overlaps (e.g., AI, CV and DS).

What would be the destiny of these sites, if that decline continues?

No idea but one of the great upsides of Stack Exchange, unlike Reddit or Quora, is that they typically provide an archive of all questions+answers with a quite friendly license. Also keep in mind that the public Stack Exchange websites serve as a promoter for Teams.

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