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Today we’re launching our Free plan on Stack Overflow for Teams.

We know that sharing knowledge and async collaboration is critical to companies and teams of all sizes. We also know people need a good sized group and time to see the impact and value of a platform like Stack Overflow for Teams. Our previous 30 day free trial of our Basic tier wasn’t long enough. Now, Stack Overflow for Teams has a free tier for up to 50 users, forever.

If you aren’t familiar with Stack Overflow for Teams, it combines the best features of the Stack Overflow platform with features tailored for teams and companies who need a private knowledge sharing and collaboration platform such as Articles, Collections and integrations.

With Stack Overflow for Teams being a flexible platform, we’ve seen customers use it for a wide variety of use cases:

  • A platform to help onboard new employees
  • A self-serve help center to reduce support tickets
  • Collaboration and documentation to drive innersource initiatives
  • Breaking down silos and driving org wide transformation like cloud migration efforts
  • A direct customer support platform
  • Enable people who are working towards a common goal, whether a startup or a side project, to develop a collective knowledge base

What’s changing?

Below are the changes you can expect to see specific to Teams as well as across Stack Overflow and the network:

Teams

New Free Tier

  • No longer a free trial but free forever
  • Up to 50 users
  • ChatOps integration to Slack & Microsoft Teams

Basic Tier

  • Adding SSO with SAML
  • Up to 250 users

Logged Out Homepage

  • When you visit the stackoverflow.com homepage, you see a list of questions if you are logged in and a traditional homepage if you are logged out.
  • We received a lot of feedback from the meta community when the homepage was last redesigned and we took this into consideration with this latest iteration. -Our goal is to make all visitors aware of both our free Q&A sites and our Teams paid product and the value associated with each.
  • Read about our approach to our new logged out homepage.

Stack Overflow and Stack Exchange Left Navigation update

  • If you belong to private Teams, Free or Basic, your Teams will be listed in the left navigation on all Stack Exchange sites. Currently, they appear only when you are visiting Stack Overflow.
  • If you don’t belong to any teams, there will be a prompt to start a team, which can be minimized.

Creating a Team
Create a free Team by following this link, and invite your colleagues or a group of people you’re looking to collaborate with.

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  • 23
    For reference: here is the logged out front page now
    – VLAZ
    Mar 17 at 14:24
  • 3
    This is actually very cool. I shall try again to get Teams on board in my company.
    – camden_kid
    Mar 31 at 9:34
  • @VLAZ So… Q&A+teams, general, Q&A+teams, Q&A+teams, teams, (Q&A+)teams, teams, teams, teams, teams, teams, teams, teams, jobs+ads+jobs, general, Q&A, teams, general. Or, as Mr. Reynholm would say: youtu.be/pGFGD5pj03M Anyway, this is very teams-focused, which isn't what I would have done, but also fine, I guess, if SE thinks that that is the main product now. They're not exactly hiding that there is a Q&A at all. Maybe the jobs could actually use a more prominent spot. For example one section near the top that lists Q&A, teams, jobs and maybe also ads and blog, all together? Apr 2 at 14:02
  • 1
    "If you don’t belong to any teams, there will be a prompt to start a team, which can be minimized." errm, where?
    – Topcode
    Apr 3 at 2:23
  • 2
    This is a bit unrelated, but please stop showing me promo material for Teams until the next major release. I tried it, it didn't do what I needed it to do, I sent feedback, and I'm just not interested in the product as it is right now. You can contact me if more features are added, but you should be able to use your own database to filter out people that already tried it. I already had to unsubscribe from the newsletter twice and I got a large banner today advertising for it, and there were a lot more things before now too pushing for it.
    – jrh
    Apr 14 at 14:36
  • I get that keeping the product in the back of somebody's mind is important, but SE seems to be having its data cake and eating it too. SE isn't the first one to do this, but it seems a bit funny to want to make data driven decisions and simultaneously throw darts in every direction until they stick. I'll circle back with Teams in like 6 months probably. I think it has potential but it needs more time in the oven to be useful for what we'd use it for.
    – jrh
    Apr 14 at 14:39
  • @alephzero your comment doesn't make any sense. Stack Overflow for Teams is Stack Exchange's main way of making revenue, in addition to Stack Overflow advertising and Stack Overflow jobs. Apr 16 at 9:39
  • 2
    How long this topic will stay featured? I guess forever?
    – Sinatr
    Apr 21 at 13:20
  • 1
    Uh oh. That means SO wasn't getting enough revenue from selling Teams. What will they do next to increase revenue or cut costs?
    – user253751
    Apr 22 at 11:43
  • 2
    I find it very telling that you've actively removed comments that may not agree with your vision of whether or not teams is useful or if forever means forever.
    – David L
    Apr 23 at 4:10
  • @Sinatr: This post, Featured on Meta, forever. Was noticing the same thing that it's been over a month and it's still there. It's fine I guess, it's just part of the scenery that I usually don't have to spend time thinking about while looking new meta stuff. Apr 23 at 5:15

12 Answers 12

55

Moving my feedback from Discord to here:

From the homepage redesign announcement:

Something we spend a lot of time thinking about from our brand perspective is how Stack Exchange and Stack Overflow relate to each other - we wanted to be clear that although you’re on stackoverflow.com, there is a whole network of sites you can explore from here. We’re highlighting a few of the related technical focused Stack Exchanges which might be of interest to a visitor just discovering Stack Overflow.

This is a very welcome change. For quite a while (years), there's been a focus by the company on SO the site mostly to the exclusion of the rest of the network - to the point where the company was renamed (back to) Stack Overflow after having been named Stack Exchange. This is probably the most encouraging sign that the company is starting to care about the rest of the network again that I've seen since... ads were enabled across the network (which, needless to say, wasn't exactly the attention the network wanted). If the company is putting resources into directing people to SE sites, that's a good sign.

If you belong to private Teams, Free or Basic, your Teams will be listed in the left navigation on most Stack Exchange sites. Currently, they appear only when you are visiting Stack Overflow.

I expect that this will lead to a drastic increase in activity on the Stack Mods Team. I know a lot of mods don't check it often because they don't really use SO, and so don't see notifications for new activity and simply forget that it exists. Personally, I'll also notice if there's activity on the Charcoal or SOBotics Teams - since I don't use Stack Overflow the site, I don't usually notice new activity on Teams at the moment.

As for the major announcement here - the fact that Teams is now permanently free for up to 50 users - that's also a very good sign for me, personally. It means that the company is stable enough financially to offer this, and historically it's when the company has been struggling financially that the community has had its major troubles. For instance, when we lost Pops in the '17 layoffs, the financial worries impacted stuff around the '19 dumpster fires, the "laying off" of Shog and Robert in January '20... and, of course, that the company didn't have the resources to invest in stuff like swag or... Community Managers. So if the company is looking financially stable enough to offer this, that's good news for everyone involved.

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  • 11
    "I expect that this will lead to a drastic increase in activity on the Stack Mods Team. I know a lot of mods don't check it often because they don't really use SO, and so don't see notifications for new activity and simply forget that it exists" slightly guilty as charged. :D
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Mar 18 at 4:20
  • Is there a Discord server? Could I get an invite? Apr 16 at 9:40
  • @AryanBeezadhur - discord.gg/VuB4Pb3jyw
    – Mithical
    Apr 16 at 10:01
43

Great news! It's perhaps an idea to make this network-wide, because users are noticing the UI change but are still confused:

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  • 12
    [status-completed]
    – Luuklag
    Mar 18 at 14:43
33

Can we get some clarity around whether the 50 user limit is total/historical users or only activated users? Consider a team of around 30 members that knows it won't be growing beyond 50; simple member churn over the years could push the total number of users over 50 even though there are never more than 30 or so actually using the team stack at one time.

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  • 35
    The 50 user limit counts currently active users and would not count any deactivated users.
    – Kirti Thorat StaffMod
    Mar 22 at 15:27
  • @KirtiThorat Good to hear, thanks Kirti! Mar 22 at 15:29
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your Teams will be listed in the left navigation on most Stack Exchange sites

Can we please know which sites, exactly?

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  • 22
    It will not be on Math Overflow at all. On the International sites, there will be no Call To Action if you don't have a Team instance, but once you do you will see the Teams you belong to listed.
    – Teresa Dietrich StaffMod
    Mar 17 at 16:59
  • 3
    A slight update - MO now has the same status as the International sites - if you're on a Team, you can see it in the left nav but there's otherwise no CTA inviting people to create Teams there.
    – Catija StaffMod
    Mar 24 at 13:41
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UPDATE

The Salesforce icon now has the correct tooltip and alt text:

enter image description here

I'll mark this as when the "less distractions" is fixed (credit to mjr for the suggestion.)


This looks great!

I've found some bugs on the new logged-out page. First:

enter image description here

I would change that to "Fewer distractions" as it sounds and looks better. Second:

That tooltip is incorrect - it actually leads to Salesforce SE.

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  • 6
    The alt text of the Salesforce icon is also incorrect. Mar 18 at 2:30
  • 20
    I think it should stay "less" but change to "distraction", because you don't want "fewer... duplication of effort"
    – mjr
    Mar 19 at 14:16
15

Extra scroll is visible on the left hand side bar. In MSE it is looking good, but a few sites have the extra scroll issue, such as Stack Overflow, Super User, Server Fault, Salesforce, and Code Golf.

A few screenshots for reference:

Stack Overflow: enter image description here

Database Administrators: enter image description here

Configuration Version
Operating System Windows 10 Pro
Mozilla Firefox 86.0 (64-bit)
Google Chrome 89.0.4389.82 (Official Build) (64-bit)
Zoom 100%
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  • 1
    Yeah this looks very ugly. They should remove the image from the teams instance in that case.
    – Luuklag
    Mar 18 at 8:46
  • 2
    What is your screen resolution?
    – Yaakov Ellis StaffMod
    Mar 18 at 9:41
  • 1
    @YaakovEllis 1366 x 768, but can be reproducible on 1360 x 768 and 1280 x 768 too
    – Arulkumar
    Mar 18 at 9:58
  • 2
    Interesting. This is with the screen maximized? I don't see the left sidebar vertical scroll until I am at 643px high or less.
    – Yaakov Ellis StaffMod
    Mar 18 at 10:36
  • @YaakovEllis Yes, with the maximized screen.
    – Arulkumar
    Mar 18 at 10:38
  • (The About page for the Salesforce Stack Exchange site has "Salesforce StackExchange" (e.g., in contrast to Code Golf's).) Mar 18 at 15:17
  • @P.Mort.-forgotClayShirky_q better make that a separate question.
    – Luuklag
    Mar 18 at 18:36
11

Thank you! The new team features look amazing.

A quick / question:

I see this in your post:

If you belong to private Teams, Free or Basic, your Teams will be listed in the left navigation on most Stack Exchange sites. Currently, they appear only when you are visiting Stack Overflow.

I am not part of any type of teams or Stack Overflow, yet I still see this on Writing SE:

enter image description here

your Teams will be listed in the left navigation on most Stack Exchange sites

Is there a way to turn off the little sidebar thing for navigation in settings for those of us who won't need it? (It just makes a bit more noise in my sidebar, which is unnecessary as I am not using or planning to use Teams.)

Could this be implemented if not already?

Anyway, thanks for the hard work!

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  • 1
    Edit profile and settings --> preferences --> Navigation --> tick "Hide left navigation". Profit. :) Mar 18 at 7:55
  • 8
    @ShadowWizardisVaccinating Thank you, but I was wondering if there was a way to keep the "home, tags, users, and unanswered" buttons (for accessibility) while hiding the Teams button.
    – Nai45
    Mar 18 at 14:09
  • 2
    Oh, that's possible only with some kind of userscript. (You need to execute a single JS command: $(".js-freemium-cta").hide(); and the Teams panel goes poof.) Mar 18 at 14:17
  • 3
    @ShadowWizardisVaccinating Or with uBlock Origin or another ad blocker; works with 0 lines of jQuery. Mar 18 at 14:25
  • @SebastianSimon never tried, but yes, sounds like valid option as well. Thanks. Mar 18 at 14:55
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If I have 51 members, will I pay $6 or $306? That's not clear from the pricing page.

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  • 8
    The features associated with Basic are different than with the Free tier, so if you need to upgrade to Basic to allow space for additional members, you'd be paying the per-seat cost for all 51 seats. We don't give 50 free seats in the Basic or Business tiers.
    – Catija StaffMod
    Apr 7 at 13:01
8

When I visit the Create free Team page, I see one of my old display names automatically filled in the form instead of my current one (or nothing at all). Why is that information still being used?

Demo:

"Create free Team" form

Can anyone else who has changed their display name at some point reproduce this?

I already posted this on Meta Stack Overflow. I'm moving it here since it's the announcement/feedback post.

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  • 10
    Ah the curious way network profiles work. Always fun these things!
    – Luuklag
    Mar 18 at 20:56
  • 2
    Check if this is what's in the "real name" section of your profile.
    – Mithical
    Mar 19 at 15:28
  • 1
    @Mithical I've already checked. The "Full name" field is blank for me and I've never used that name as my "full name". Only used it as a display name a few years back.
    – 41686d6564
    Mar 19 at 15:50
8

I have two questions:

  • What is the license of the content inside a (free) Team site?

  • Can you export the answers?

2

As someone wanting to build a group of

people you can count with if the info you're sharing can't be make public in SE (be that for development, cities, etc) and are ok with being share in light of the terms of use and privacy policy of each team.

Some days ago contacted the support to clarify how many members could have on my teams without extra cost. That number was 10.

On my end, knowing it was only 10 lead to

  1. a shift of policies around "who can be part of that Team?"

  2. think about membership fees (similarly to what Mike Cohn does in his Agile Mentors Community)

  3. find another place where QAs could be tracked

which eventually slowed down the process given all other responsibilities I have. Thing is, for point 3. I'm sure there isn't any product out there which is as good as Stack for dealing with QAs and all needed actions related with it (duplicates, tags, upvotes, ...). Then, for point 2. (which would eventually come to that if the community grows for more than 50) I wouldn't feel good about charging for something that doesn't necessarily bring value (testing with 10 would've probably been ok too but this then linked with problem 1. of the policies).

Anyways, so I see this modification as an investment from your side in us! (which is very much appreciated)

2

I'm teaching a programming course this term so I decided to try setting up a teams group for my class, which has fewer than 50 students. I'm pleased overall with the results. Specifically it has the following advantages:

  • It provides a safe place where I can train my students how to ask good questions on Stack Overflow.
  • We're not bothering SO moderators and users with any of our potentially poor questions or answers.
  • We're protected from the negative environment on SO (downvotes, close votes, mean comments, etc.)
  • It's a centralized repository of Q&A that applies just to us.

There were a few UX pain points, though:

  • It took me a long time to find how to manage users after adding them the first time. (That was probably because I have the side bar minimized by default.)
  • Markdown is disabled by default and code formatting in the non-markdown editor was giving my students and me a ton of problems.
  • It difficult to switch to my teams account and see the list of questions directly. I'd like the most recent questions to show immediately when I choose my teams account from the toolbar.

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