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In the latest post on the Stack Overflow blog titled "Stack Overflow Around the World", Joel Spolsky mentions the following (emphasis mine):

One thing we discovered early on about setting up new Stack Exchange communities is that they only work if you have a critical mass of experienced users who know how the system works. The Area 51 process is designed to insure that we only open sites for which we have a group of committed users. This process has worked well: so far we’ve opened 40+ sites of which only two failed.

But I'm not sure I understand what constitutes a failure based on the number mentioned:

  • If you only consider officially "launched" sites, I don't believe there are any.
  • If you consider sites that made it to beta, there are actually three:
  • Of course, if you consider all the proposals that were closed, there are dozens (-ish?) of them.

The closest match seems to be the failed beta sites, so is it just a typo and it really should be three?

Or is there some other segment of SE sites (or even SE sites I'm not thinking of) that Stack Exchange, Inc. considers a failure?

  • No need to rub it in @studiohack – Ivo Flipse Apr 29 '11 at 0:02
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Joel just misspoke (mistyped?). There have been three site failures, which you listed. I fixed the blog post.

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Joel remains sort of distant from SE daily operations, so he's probably not aware that it is now 3.

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    Or perhaps Joel doesn't even believe the Atheism SE site ever existed? – Bill the Lizard Apr 7 '11 at 20:09
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    it's hard to believe in atheism – Joel Spolsky Apr 7 '11 at 21:16
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    I'm skeptical about the whole process. – mmyers Apr 7 '11 at 22:33
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    The question is, did it believe in Joel? – Rosinante Apr 29 '11 at 1:56

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