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2817 votes
9 answers
322k views

A Terms of Service update restricting companies that scrape your profile information without your permission

Update (April 19, 2016): This change is now live. You can view the updated Terms of Service here, or read about them below. tl;dr: We’re planning to make some changes to our Terms of Service to stop ...
Jaydles's user avatar
  • 52.7k
2573 votes
45 answers
264k views

Firing mods and forced relicensing: is Stack Exchange still interested in cooperating with the community?

The last weeks and days have seen some erratic behaviour by Stack Exchange Inc., such as likely illegal changes to the content license and the firing of an upstanding community moderator with no ...
amon's user avatar
  • 15.2k
2371 votes
30 answers
150k views

Stack Overflow is doing me ongoing harm; it's time to fix it!

Over the last month, Stack Overflow has violated its own policies and precedents to cause egregious and unnecessary harm to me -- to my reputation (personal and professional), to my health, and to my ...
Monica Cellio's user avatar
1993 votes
7 answers
758k views

What is the XY problem?

What is the XY problem? When asking questions, how do I recognize when I'm falling into it? How do I avoid it? Return to FAQ index Other languages: ES, JA, PT, RU
1868 votes
51 answers
50k views

Could we please be a bit nicer to new users?

There is a distinct decline in the level of civility on all the sites here. Some of this is due to new users coming in and posting spam and other nonsense, but the off-topic and downvote buttons are ...
1862 votes
0 answers
127k views

FAQ for Stack Exchange sites

Community FAQ For sites in the Stack Exchange 2.0 network To see a list of commonly used words and phrases, see the glossary. For official guidance from Stack Exchange, visit the Help Center. Asking ...
1606 votes
46 answers
57k views

Thank you, Shog9

@Shog9, a longtime Community Manager here at Stack Exchange, has just tweeted that he is no longer working at Stack Overflow: @shog9: Well... I suddenly find myself in need of work. If anyone's ...
Mithical's user avatar
  • 80.7k
1535 votes
51 answers
65k views

Fastest Gun in the West Problem

I feel like there's a problem with Stack Overflow, as the number of people prowling it increases. Each question's answers are sorted by descending score and then by descending time of posting. This ...
1270 votes
13 answers
19k views

Don't throw away all votes when a user is deleted

Currently, when a moderator deletes a user all of the user's votes are removed along with the user themselves. I was pretty surprised at this behaviour when I first heard about it, and I don't think ...
Mad Scientist's user avatar
1253 votes
31 answers
48k views

Encouraging people to explain downvotes

Note: If you're looking for a simple explanation as to why comments aren't required on downvotes, see Why isn't providing feedback mandatory on downvotes, and why are ideas suggesting such ...
1199 votes
3 answers
369k views

Are there any clones/alternatives for running a Stack Exchange style Q&A site?

Since the source code for this site isn't available for purchase or external use, I'm looking for software that can run a Q&A environment similar to Stack Exchange. Are there any such pieces of ...
1193 votes
14 answers
114k views

Moderation Strike: Stack Overflow, Inc. cannot consistently ignore, mistreat, and malign its volunteers

Update On August 2nd, 2023, negotiations between community representatives and representatives of the company concluded with an agreement being reached. The details of the agreement can be found at ...
Mithical's user avatar
  • 80.7k
1122 votes
32 answers
120k views

Should 'Hi', 'thanks', taglines, and salutations be removed from posts?

I edit a lot of posts every day. I often run across posts with 'Hi' and 'Thanks' on the top and the bottom of the post respectively. I also run across things like: --User Should these items be ...
1117 votes
1 answer
536k views

How does accepting an answer work?

What does it mean to accept an answer? How do I accept an answer, and what are the rules? Can I accept my own self-answer? What are the reputation benefits? Which answer should I accept? Should I ...
1112 votes
3 answers
16k views

Why is Stack Overflow trying to start audio?

I often have my browser's devtools open since I'm often debugging a snippet. I noticed this message often recently: Why is Stack Overflow trying to start audio? Update. I see it's from an ad(?). ...
gman's user avatar
  • 4,839
1064 votes
1 answer
113k views

What are "Community Wiki" posts?

Some questions and answers are marked Community Wiki and are owned by a community wiki user: (In fact, this very question is one of them) Why have Community Wiki posts? How do Community Wiki posts ...
1024 votes
22 answers
92k views

Firing Community Managers: Stack Exchange is not interested in cooperating with the community, is it?

Less than a month ago, there was some settling of the incident with firing Monica. It's obvious that there was not a lot of approval from the community on the course of action chosen by SE, or the ...
Anton Menshov's user avatar
1007 votes
24 answers
96k views

Show all of my question/answers to me even if they are deleted

I would really like to see all of my questions and answers on the profile page, even if some of them were deleted, and I don't have enough rep to see them on the site. (Note that some questions are ...
vava's user avatar
  • 13.2k
946 votes
56 answers
20k views

Why aren't people voting for questions?

While at least some answers from every question seem to have been up-voted as a "helpful" answer: about 49% of questions have score of 0 or 1. another 21% of questions have a score of 2. Most ...
928 votes
25 answers
243k views

Is there Markdown to create tables? [duplicate]

It seems like a lot of people try to display tables in Stack Overflow questions, but don't do a very good job. Is there Markdown syntax that supports creating a proper table?
leora's user avatar
  • 10.8k
891 votes
76 answers
195k views

The Many Memes of Meta

Catchphrases and concepts that spread from person to person are known as memes, which, courtesy the Internet, can now explode across the Earth like a highly contagious virus (hence "going viral&...
885 votes
21 answers
14k views

Allow an edit to notify downvoters: "I think I've fixed the issue now - please check"

To me, a downvote usually indicates a problem with an answer. When I downvote it's to mark the answer as having a problem, not the person. If the answer is fixed, I want to remove that downvote - but ...
Jon Skeet's user avatar
  • 93.7k
859 votes
21 answers
18k views

Can we have the ability to retract a close vote before it closes?

Sometimes you vote to close something and the OP then changes it to fix the issue or issues. You can't take a close vote back though. It would be nice if you could. With the new Duplicate close ...
cletus's user avatar
  • 48.3k
847 votes
1 answer
21k views

What does "user was removed" mean and why did my reputation change because of it?

Message appearing when a user was removed. It seems I lost 1765 reputation points on Stack Overflow yesterday. The reason given in my history is "removed", with the description of User was ...
844 votes
9 answers
48k views

What are the badges I can earn on each site, and what are the exact criteria for earning each badge?

Formerly List of all badges with full descriptions. What are badge name's requirements? Why didn't I get badge name (right now)? Which badges can I earn multiple times? Jump to: Question Badges ...
828 votes
51 answers
30k views

Net Neutrality and Stack Overflow / Stack Exchange

It's July 12th! (2017) (in Coordinated Universal Stack Exchange Time) Today we're gonna be showing a banner directing readers to the blog post (and thus, indirectly, this discussion) from every Stack ...
Shog9's user avatar
  • 450k
825 votes
25 answers
10k views

Give an incentive for finding duplicate questions [duplicate]

At present if you see a question that may be a duplicate and has an easy answer you can post the answers or post a link to the duplicate question. (Or the few hi-rep users can vote to close it as ...
Ian Ringrose's user avatar
  • 27.3k
810 votes
15 answers
77k views

Recent feature changes to Stack Exchange

This is an unofficial list/changelog of new features and various changes to Stack Overflow and the Stack Exchange network. It is maintained by the community, while a Stack Exchange employee changes ...
810 votes
16 answers
43k views

Thank you, Robert Cartaino

The title says it all. Thank you, Robert Cartaino, for everything you did for SE and the community. I don't post much on MSE, but have been a mod for about eight years. There is a lot that can go on ...
mpdonadio's user avatar
  • 6,467
791 votes
21 answers
71k views

Moderation strike: Results of negotiations

We have reached the following conclusions during negotiations between community-selected strike representatives and representatives of Stack Exchange, Inc. This aims to address most of the concerns ...
Mithical's user avatar
  • 80.7k
772 votes
41 answers
33k views

New Feature: Table Support

Update: I've just enabled this feature network-wide. All sites across Stack Exchange are now able to use tables. Thanks for all the feedback. We'll keep monitoring this question and we'll continue to ...
Ham Vocke's user avatar
  • 11.9k
771 votes
1 answer
143k views

Which tools and technologies are used to build the Stack Exchange Network?

What tools and technologies are used to build the Stack Exchange Network? See also: Which tools and technologies are used to build Data Explorer? Return to FAQ index
756 votes
3 answers
64k views

Your answer is in another castle: when is an answer not an answer?

I think we can all agree, this sucks: If you've been around a little while, you've probably encountered hundreds of answers like this in various forums, some of them even marked as "The Answer&...
Shog9's user avatar
  • 450k
734 votes
1 answer
46k views

How do I get attention for one of my own questions without a good answer?

I asked a question almost as soon as I got my account. I got a few decent answers, but none of them helped solve my problem. The question has long since become buried by newer questions, and there's ...
732 votes
26 answers
89k views

Stack Exchange Public Q&A access will not be restricted in Russia

Like so many people around the world, we are watching the tragic and unlawful invasion of Ukraine unfold. Several of the discussions on Meta and in conversations with us have raised the question of ...
Philippe's user avatar
  • 21k
725 votes
1 answer
76k views

What is the association bonus, and how does it work?

I was just awarded +100 reputation on all of my Stack Exchange accounts. What is this bonus for? It simply says "Association Bonus" on my reputation overview. Also: What privileges does the ...
724 votes
7 answers
42k views

Dear Stack Exchange: a statement and a letter from your moderators

Dear Stack Exchange, Inc., We know you know about this already, so we'll keep this brief. The past two weeks have been rough. Lots of moderators have lost confidence in you; for some, it was the final ...
ArtOfCode's user avatar
  • 36.3k
719 votes
37 answers
225k views

Six simple tips to get Stack Overflow reputation fast

From "6 Simple Tips to Get Stackoverflow Reputation Fast" at codexon.com: Be the First to Answer. Even at the cost of quality. Use Downvotes and Comments Strategically Use obnoxious in-...
717 votes
6 answers
340k views

How do I escape a backtick ` within in-line code in Markdown?

How do I escape a backtick ` within a code block? This is probably a duplicate, since I'm sure it's a common concern, but I can't find a question that addresses this specifically. How do I write ...
smartcaveman's user avatar
  • 10.2k
705 votes
1 answer
138k views

How do comment @replies work?

How do the comment replies (aka "pinging users") work? Who can I send an @reply to? How do I respond to a specific user when entering my comment? Will they be notified? What do people mean ...
696 votes
147 answers
28k views

Help us test the shiny new "User Activity" page! (Plus a bunch of new features.) [duplicate]

We've launched! Please give feedback here. Today, we're shipping the new "Activity Page" of the Profile here on Meta SE, so you can test it out and hopefully share some feedback and ...
Jaydles's user avatar
  • 52.7k
682 votes
19 answers
117k views

Any way to send a personal message to another user?

There has been quite a few times that I wished I could send a message to another user on SO - not ask a question for everyone to see, but just a short message informing them of something or requesting ...
a_m0d's user avatar
  • 10.9k
671 votes
18 answers
27k views

Monica's situation continues unresolved. Is SE hoping the problem just goes away?

This surfaced in the apology thread, but I believe it deserves more exposure. The apology thread was posted October 6th, 2019. In it, the idea was expressed that SE, the company, had done wrong by ...
TheCog19's user avatar
  • 10.1k
660 votes
8 answers
420k views

Are answers that just contain links elsewhere really "good answers"?

I have often wondered at the practice on Stack Overflow, Server Fault, and the other sites where someone will ask a question and an answer will come in that says "Look here: https://link ...
645 votes
290 answers
89k views

Formatting Sandbox

Notes: Answers will occasionally be moved to the Sandbox archive when there are too many of them. When using them to report bugs, keep an eye on the post. You may also want to take a look at the ...
628 votes
13 answers
21k views

Exit strategies for "chameleon questions"

I'm not sure if there's already an existing term for this, so I'm inventing my own. (tl;dr: I call them "chameleon questions" because they change every time you submit or edit an answer. If ...
Aarobot's user avatar
  • 34.9k
621 votes
1 answer
129k views

What is syntax highlighting and how does it work?

I noticed that sometimes my code gets highlighted in different colors when rendered. What is syntax highlighting? How does it work? Why isn't my code being highlighted correctly? How do I report a ...
618 votes
1 answer
71k views

How does the bounty system work?

It's possible to offer and award bounties of reputation on questions. What is a bounty? How can I find questions that have a bounty attached? How do I start a bounty? When can I start a bounty? Why ...
613 votes
2 answers
16k views

Winter Bash 2016 - All Hats [closed]

I decided to start the traditional secret hats post, but instead of just another "here is how you get the secret hats" post, to also add in all the hats. There are two answers: one for the ...
586 votes
1 answer
84k views

How does "Reputation" work?

On Stack Exchange, users may gain a certain level of reputation. What does reputation do? How can a user gain or lose reputation? See also: What is reputation? How do I earn (and lose) it? in the ...

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