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3:20 PM
@dcorking Actually I have not been here from the beginning so I don't know all the history -- I presumed it was this way because S.E. does sort of implicitly have a no overlap policy in that for sites to make it out of Area 51, they have to demonstrate that there is a reasonable scope of questions that couldn't be asked anywhere else. So I was mistaken in saying it's a hard and fast official policy, etc.
There's a discussion of this from the site's Area 51 days:
Q: Raspberry Pi shares scope with many sites...is it necessary?

Kevin VermeerProposal: Raspberry-Pi Hardware and Software This site shares its scope with many other sites: Electrical Engineering: The hardware, peripheral development, writing drivers, hardware-related problems with the OS Stack Overflow: Writing software for the Raspberry Pi, probably programming questi...

I agree w/ the second comment on that question, re, excessive permissiveness encourages "help vampirism". The "Fork it!" link at the bottom of that is also interesting, as it revolves around the genesis of the separate Ubuntu/U&L sites:
Joel Spolsky on September 02, 2010

First, some background. I grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico… OK, wait a minute, you don’t need that much background.

In the beginning there was Stack Overflow. When we set up Stack Overflow, we knew people would use it to ask questions about lots and lots of different programming topics. Instead of the traditional approach, where you have a thousand different groups and sub-groups on every topic imaginable (like Usenet (comp.lang.vb.syntax.parens.unmatched, anyone?), the Stack Overflow approach was to use more free-form tags. Theoretically, tags would let you ask a question that ha …

3:33 PM
As for specifically allowing general linux questions here, in addition to what I've already said about why that is IMO a bad idea in theory, I'll give you some opinions about what I'm sure it will mean here if adopted in practice. I spend a lot of time here...I'm not just the number 3 ranked user, but when earlier when doing some digging about why the site has such a relatively poor "answered question ratio", noticed...
thanks @goldilocks
...I'm #2 in terms of number of answers given. I'm not saying this so much to brag, but just to indicate that I don't just have a lot of points, I've read and deal with a lot of questions (right now, I at least read pretty much all of them). My whole area of expertise is linux, so if we opened this up, there'd be the opportunity for me to score even more points, etc. -- but that is obviously not a decent motivation for wanting to do so...
@dcorking Hey. I'm being long-winded again ;)
Anyway, if we did do that here -- BTW, I would not try to stop you from putting it to a vote -- what I'm positive about is, we'd end up with a steadily climbing "unanswered question" rate. In a sense that doesn't matter (although it would dash our chances of making it out of beta), but it would reflect what I've been saying about the consequences of help vampirism. People get sick of answering the same question repeatedly (why there's closed dupes), sick of helping people who...
... won't make an effort to help themselves (why there's downvotes), etc. I think it is a very bad idea to encourage people new to linux via the pi to become insular for whatever reason. I understand it is not the easiest OS to learn, especially in the pi context, and there' s commonly a bit of resentment about that ("I wish it just ran Windows", etc), such that maybe people don't want to have to go hat in hand to a larger community that actually uses linux by choice.
Perhaps because of this, I see a disproportionate amount of cargo cult style methodology online associated with the pi. Dealing with linux questions here is bound to add to that -- I just don't see the potential for us to become a genuine source of expertise along those lines in the way that U&L already is so much as I see the potential for the blind leading the blind...
It is product of a small user base. I think we actually have our hands full as it is.

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