This might seem like a stupid question but I recently found out (okay maybe not that recently) that there are unique chat servers for Stack Overflow and Meta Stack Exchange. Why cannot we have a chat server for every site, for example, codegolf.chat.stackexchange.com for Code Golf? Would this even be a good idea?

Now the advantages that I could think of are:

  1. Organization - Increased organization since if you want to talk about code golf, for example, go to codegolf.chat.stackexchange.com instead of having to go to chat.stackexchange.com/?tab=site&host=codegolf.stackexchange.com which a new user to chat or even people who have been using chat for a while will likely not know of and it's much more longer than chat.codegolf.stackexchange.com (an argument could be made that they could just bookmark it for example, but if you click on a room then it won't retain that your host was codegolf.SE)

  2. Trust - Since you would need reputation on Code Golf to talk at codegolf.chat.stackexchange.com, it would make you need to be familiar with the code golf community which would help in chat and make you more trustable too since currently you could get 20 reputation on a site by just answering one question and then spam on all the chatrooms. This would defend against that by making you get 20 reputation points on sites whose chatrooms you chat on.

  3. Reputation - This is a combination of two small points. Only the first three times you get 20 reputation matters since there are three chat servers and after that that privilege is basically useless and now reputation would be more accurate, because if you are on codegolf.chat.stackexchange.com then it would show your reputation on Code Golf or if you are on 3dprinting.chat.stackexchange.com it would show your reputation on 3D Printing.

However there are also clear disadvantages.

  1. Work - A lot of work would be required for this. Running a chat server for every single site could be expensive, along with this taking a long time to set up. The existing chatrooms would likely need to get moved to their respective sites which could also take a lot of work.

  2. Navigation - If you want to go to a room in 3D Printing you would need to get to 3dprinting.chat.stackexchange.com and find it which would make you need to remember the site your chatroom is in. And then along with it of course find the chatroom in the site which makes navigation harder than it already is, with limited filtering options for chatrooms (that could be a great feature)

  3. Main Server - What would happen to chat.stackexchange.com? Either it could be turned into a collection of all the chat servers, so it would have rooms from all the chat servers and would navigate to the room on the specific chat server when you click on it (solves con 2). And it could have a list of users from all chat servers, along with a list of all chat servers as we have with sites on stackexchange.com. Or it could be for chatrooms about chat itself, so testing chatrooms (Sandbox, Sandbox 2), bot chatrooms (Utility Bot), rooms for users (Petəíŕd's Den, Shadow's Den) and moderation chatrooms (Artisan Spammer Cannery and Loanshark Hunting Grounds), to name a few. It would work like now as in it would require 20 reputation on any site.

Would this even be useful to anyone? Would anyone even like or want chat servers for every site? Would this be useful? Personally I am not that much in favour of this, but I want to get the opinions of other users.

  • No, that's a bad idea, server should serve many requests. If anything. the opposite was requested long ago, got popular and might even happen one day. Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 10:14
  • That said you can keep this i.e. not delete, if you do, I can turn the comment into answer. (Don't want to prevent you from deleting for a while) Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 10:16
  • Just to note, the Artisan Spammer Cannery and...(I love my jokes too much) actually started as a way to keep track of spammers as a private room, and turned into a moderation tool partially by accident. Ideally at some point it was supposed to gradually taper down, but its useful and people find its handy to put spammers on the fast track to obliteration. We do have a proper room for Super User mod contacts Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 10:19
  • 3
    Just noticed you're banned from chat in se.com does it have anything to do with this question? (e.g. if ban will be per-site you will still be able to chat in other sites.) Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 11:46
  • @ShadowWizardIsSadAndAngry That is a coincidence, I did not even think about that when writing this question.
    – The_AH
    Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 13:27

1 Answer 1


I would say practically in the early days, and with active development and promotion of chat, this would have been a good idea.

The existing servers already have a discoverability issue IMO, and having a common server means people can find chatrooms more easily. A separate server also means a separate chat tab, when I currently just switch between them on the sidebar.

It would have the 'reverse' effect of isolating network chatrooms.

It also makes moderation harder.

SO and SE chats have a certain 'depth' of 10k users and mods which means its easy to find someone to deal with a moderation issue in a reasonable amount of time. MSE has a concentration of folks who can flag and do things.

A site like say Pets (which I moderate) has three active moderators, and I'm generally the one active in chat. We have a bit of potential backup from non local moderators, but if we were our own 'independent' server, it would be troublesome if something happened and the local moderators weren't around.

Having chat.site.stackexchange.com, or more realistically site.chat.stackexchange.com1 as an alias to a primary chatroom or a listing of chatrooms parented on the site might be handy, but that would require developer time the company hasn't shown able or willing to dedicate to chat improvements.

1: Meta sites are named site.meta.stackexhange.com rather than meta.site.stackexchange.com for easier SSL cert management. As such, for consistency's sake, site.chat.stackexhange.com seems more plausible

  • Chat really does need a lot of improvements so this could be a way to start chat development maybe but probably not. How about sites like Pets don't have chat servers, they aren't that active really so it doesn't seem like people would discuss them in chat. This isolating chatrooms could be useful for making communities individually more active and breathing as separate chat servers could make communities more focused to say but this does sound like a bad idea at the end of the day. I am going to upvote and accept this answer. I am going to edit the question.
    – The_AH
    Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 10:28
  • Then comes to a question of 'which sites get them' - And as a moderator on a fairly big site, I don't need a separate server, I need attention to grow and sustain the communities we have. Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 10:29
  • Sites with users that have a few thousand rep and a few active moderators and maybe some less active moderators so Superuser, Codegolf, and Serverfault for example would fit these also beta sites should probably not have servers as beta is an indication that they are still growing. This might be making things more complicated then it needs to be, actually it probably is. From a moderation viewpoint this is not exactly the best change but if executed correctly then not terrible.
    – The_AH
    Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 10:33
  • Chat's hardly got that many though. I think at our maximum we had 20-30 users on SU's main chat, likewise serverfault. And serverfault's chat's mostly dead these days Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 10:35
  • So separate chat servers are not a good idea, I am not going to delete this question now however, because if any future users have this idea then this would help to know it is terrible before making the question.
    – The_AH
    Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 10:37
  • This was the original plan for chat.SE - you'll still find legacy things in the code for that idea, such as custom ping sounds for Super User and Ask Ubuntu.
    – Mithical
    Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 10:48
  • @Mithical but they can have custom ping sounds now, with single server, the parent site is known. The request is to add 180+ servers, one for each site. Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 10:51
  • @ShadowWizardIsSadAndAngry Not 180+ servers, only for some sites.
    – The_AH
    Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 11:26
  • @The_AH that's not what the suggestion says: "have a chat server for every site". Doesn't really matter though, just semantics. (at this point.) Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 11:43
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    Even if it was 'just' for the bigger sites, it reduces depth of community moderation, and ironically for people like me who are active across the network, adds complexity. Commented Oct 23, 2023 at 11:44

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