What is the policy for questions that are already asked on Stack Overflow, Super User, or something similar? I've got a few questions over there that are unanswered (and some answered but I'm not fully satisfied with the answers) that would would love to move over here to get more attention. Is there a formal moving process? Should I just re-ask the question? Do I need to always cross-reference the old question?

1 Answer 1


During the private beta: if you see an existing question which has not been satisfactorily answered and that interests you personally, then feel free to re-ask it here.

Do cite the original: if you reworded the question to your liking, link to the original; if you copied the words literally, use quote markup and credit the original author. If there are answers on the original site, summarize them and indicate in what way you find them sub-par. (Here's an example from the recent defunct Operating Systems beta; the motivation for re-asking was that there were at the time two answers on Stack Overflow that seemed contradictory.)

Please don't re-ask questions just for the sake of re-asking. The point is to get better answers, not to re-do the work or “appropriate” the questions.

Once this site goes public, migration will be another option. However, on-topic questions will not be migrated away from other sites, even if this site exists. Furthermore questions older than 60 days cannot be migrated at all. Migration is only an option for a question that is off-topic or at best borderline (for example a question about general usage Emacs on Stack Overflow, that doesn't involve Lisp programming and isn't about working with source code), and only if it is recent enough.

If you find similar questions on this site and on another site after this site goes public, please comment on each site to list to the other question, so that people who find one of the questions in a search can easily check the other one for new or better answers. Do not post the same question on multiple sites.

  • Should I still use quote markup if I am the original author?
    – asmeurer
    Sep 23, 2014 at 22:27
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    @asmeurer No, if you're the original author, you can do whatever you want with your own content (“self-plagiarism” is an oxymoron). You should still link the questions so that people can check for answers on the other site. Sep 23, 2014 at 22:39
  • "then feel free it here."? Perhaps "then feel free to move it here"? Sep 23, 2014 at 23:52
  • @FaheemMitha A question can't be moved (except through migration, which I mention later, but isn't applicable in the cases that interest asmeurer: they're old questions, mostly not off-topic). Sep 23, 2014 at 23:55
  • @Gilles I was merely commenting on the syntax of your sentence. You wrote "then feel free it here". It is not clear (to me, at least) what you meant. Perhaps you misunderstood what I was saying. Sep 24, 2014 at 0:14
  • @FaheemMitha Ah, ok. I hadn't noticed the missing words. Fixed. Sep 24, 2014 at 0:30
  • Should we maybe emphasize that questions with good answers elsewhere should NOT be re-asked? (I know you said that, I'm just asking if we could give it more emphasis)
    – Malabarba
    Sep 24, 2014 at 11:12
  • @Malabarba It's already in bold in the first sentence, what else do you suggest? Sep 24, 2014 at 11:20
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    "Furthermore questions older than 60 days cannot be migrated at all." I think this is pretty terrible, and it severely limits my personal enthusiasm about this site. With emacs.stackexchange entering the picture, I would categorize many existing Emacs questions at SO as offtopic.
    – Dmitry
    Sep 24, 2014 at 17:51
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    @Dmitry I agree that the 60-day limit is stupid. It was added under the pretext of solving a problem that it doesn't contribute in solving at all. I have been voting to close many historical Emacs questions on SO that aren't programming-related in the slightest, and it sucks that they now have to be closed in place rather than migrated to SU (or now Emacs.SE). Sep 24, 2014 at 17:59
  • @Gilles is there a way to link to the new question from the closed question before it is fully closed? For example with a comment or another answer?
    – b4hand
    Sep 26, 2014 at 23:01
  • @b4hand I don't understand your question. You can comment on a question whether it's closed or not. Sep 26, 2014 at 23:04
  • It was more of "should this be done actively" and before voting to close a question.
    – b4hand
    Sep 26, 2014 at 23:08

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