Would it be appropriate to advertise an area51 proposal on SO ? I'm asking because I'm involved with the Theoretical Computer Science proposal, and while we have a good number of commits, most of the commitments are coming from users outside the SE universe, and so do not contribute rep to the overall score.

Given the topic, I suspect many participants on SO might be interested in this topic. Rather than spamming SO directly, I thought I'd check and see if it's ok to do so.


3 Answers 3


Do you mean as part of questions/answers/comments or as actual paid advertising?

I think you'll find that the general consensus will be that using answers/questions to explicitly promote anything (be it your product, your blog or your Area51 proposal) will be frowned upon and likely voted down/flagged as spam. Questions are for getting answers and answers are for providing the best/most relevant information possible. I can't see how a link to an Area51 proposal can possibly fit in either of those categories.

If you meant through paid advertising, then I can't see any problem with it at all (although I doubt that's what you meant).

I feel for your issue, but I don't think spamming SO is the answer.

Edit: One possible idea would be to allow free advertising (in the same manner as the open source advertising that already exists) to cycle through nominated Area51 proposals to try & help to drum up interest... Seems like a good use of advertising space for SO (inc) as it'd be helping to cross-promote and help to grow the SE network.

  • thanks. I'm glad I checked here first.
    – Suresh
    Jun 30, 2010 at 6:31
  • I like the idea of free advertising, but I guess that won't even be considered as long as Area 51 is still in beta... Jun 30, 2010 at 7:39
  • +1 for the free advertising idea. Jun 30, 2010 at 9:09

When closing questions on Super User that are either gaming, smartphone or website related, we tend to mention that such a site is in the works and link to the relevant Area51 proposal.

Anything more than that would be spam and should be handled by the SO-team rather than individual users (hopefully in the form of official ads)


You could test the limits by asking a TCS question at SO which is programming related and mention "or should I hope for the TCS proposal to ask there?". As long as question is relevant it might still get some attetion, and if the statement is considered spam it might just get edited out...

  • that's an interesting idea.
    – Suresh
    Jun 30, 2010 at 7:42
  • @Suresh however, I'm also relatively new to SOFU, so maybe wait a few hours to see whether my suggestion gets down-voted... Jun 30, 2010 at 7:46

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