Crossposting is frowned upon since the old news:// times.

However, between StackOverflow, SuperUser, and Serverfault there are some grey zones as this answer nicely highlights.

Of course, I have a particular case study for which I would get a wider exposure at StackOverflow, but hope to get a more professional view point here. Again, SuperUser could have the four folks who wanted to answer it, if they could see it.

So the question is either: Do we want to burden the answerers to create accounts at multiple sites and subscribe to multiple feeds to see all questions?

Or: Do we want to burden the askers to crosspost the same question to multiple sites?

The obvious follow-up: What happens if I do cross-post? Do the moderators on all sites have an agreement on how to handle grey zones? I doubt it.

To make it easy, I'd propose a feature to be able to create a "symbolic link" concept: Create a "link to a question" on another StackExchange site, that points to the original question and is indexed and searchable as if it was posted on both sites.

Care has to be taken to unify the tags database: Imho, they should be kept separate. But if a formerly unknown tag is attached to the linked question it could be imported as a new tag, complete with the tag wiki. On that other site, the new tag would list only the one question which just got linked to.

Should I crosspost this meta Q to meta SU and meta SO?

  • Every site has it's own independent database; something like this would be incredibly hard to implement give the current DB schema. Questions about network wide changes should be posted to Meta Stack Exchange, but they'll eat you alive if we migrate this as it's been proposed there before and they aren't nice to people who haven't read every post in existence there.
    – Chris S
    Commented Apr 3, 2012 at 14:31
  • I proposed something like this over there a while ago. The end goal in my mind was to make it look like a question had been migrated through two or more relevant sites before settling in the final one. The idea didn't gain much traction.
    – Ladadadada
    Commented Apr 3, 2012 at 15:03
  • 1
    Don't cross post, either a question is on topic for a site and it gets answers or it's off topic and it gets closed or migrated to a suitable site.
    – user9517
    Commented Apr 3, 2012 at 17:11
  • Your case study is an oddity because although you're asking for a programmatic solution, SO isn't interested because they don't recognise shell scripting as programming (despite supporting numerous other scripting languages, such as PHP, HTMl, CSS, Perl, etc.). It's for that reason alone that I haven't cast a close vote on it. Commented Apr 3, 2012 at 22:51
  • @JohnGardeniers Yes, that's why I'm tempted to give it a try and copy it to StackOverflow. Currently I feel like it will be totally random whether its going to be answered, lie dormant, be migrated, or closed. I put it on serverfault because I was hoping the more experienced sysadmins have had similar cases/request. Maybe I should ask to even migrate my own question to StackOverflow - but flagging it as "offtopic" and risking it to be closed seems....too risky.
    – cfi
    Commented Apr 4, 2012 at 10:54
  • @JohnGardeniers: Btw, I would not call this "asking for a programmatic solution": This is an actual system setup case I have here with a team. IF every line in a .profile or .login means it's a programmatic solution we can close a lot of questions as being off-topic here. Imho, lots of questions are closed much too early. The mechanism with 5 votes required is flawed as the user base grows.
    – cfi
    Commented Apr 4, 2012 at 10:57

2 Answers 2



Either a question is on topic for a site and it gets answers or it's off topic and it gets closed or migrated to a suitable site.

Cross posting just causes more work especially if one of the sites deems it off topic and migrates it to another site where it has been cross posted to. Now you have an exact duplicate possibly with answers to both which requires closure and merging, handling of dupe flags etc.

  • Imho, the first sentence is a gross oversimplification of real life, but the second has merits and might be good reasoning why what I proposed is not feasible to implement. Although I would assume that a db driven site can catch these cases. This depends on how the DB's are organized, and Chris S already hinted in his comments that what I proposed is hard to do given the current schemas.
    – cfi
    Commented Apr 4, 2012 at 10:50

I would consider a "crossposting" feature to be too much work for too little benefit. There is a general underlying problem with thematic overlap on the StackExchange network, but it would not get any better with a cross-posting feature.

  • Hopefully the work would be a one-time effort, while without any improvement on this, the ongoing effort for people to get good answers (and to find good questions) is accumulating...I'm not necessarily an advocate of crossposting itself, but something needs to be done, imho.
    – cfi
    Commented Apr 3, 2012 at 14:14
  • 1
    It can be "done" manually by simply referencing the question á la "I've asked the same question over at SuperUser and have got some interesting suggestions, but bit XYZ is still missing". Just blending in a foreign site's answers would create more confusion than it would solve.
    – the-wabbit
    Commented Apr 3, 2012 at 14:38
  • Cross posting shouldn't be encouraged. Either a question on on topic for a site and it get answers or it's off topic and gets closed or migrated to a suitable site.
    – user9517
    Commented Apr 3, 2012 at 17:10
  • @Iain cross-posting with references might be useful if there is a benefit in having a question discussed with the different backgrounds of the respective communities. Not that it would happen all that often.
    – the-wabbit
    Commented Apr 3, 2012 at 22:05

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .