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I wonder about the beta in the main Buddhism SE Beta header.

In particular what is the goal of the beta and what kind of feedback they are looking for.

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In the old days, a new SE site would be in "beta" when it first started.

Ideally a new site would start, become more popular and stable, and then "graduate".

"Popular" means having enough questions per day, and enough of the questions answered.

"Stable" means having enough users -- especially sufficiently "high-reputation" or regular/active users who can vote to close questions and so on, which moderators don't necessarily have time for on a busy site -- and some kind of community, i.e. regular users who will answer questions, and some established policies about what's on topic.

You can see the stats for this site here -- https://area51.stackexchange.com/proposals/45110/buddhism

All our numeric stats look excellent, except "questions per day" -- we have never had enough "questions per day" to graduate -- so here we are, 5 years later, still in "beta".

Our being still in beta doesn't matter much. SE have said they won't close an otherwise healthy site for not being popular enough -- I think that "healthy" might mean essentially that it's still being moderated effectively -- so this site might be able to carry on like this indefinitely.

The benefits of graduating would be:

  • Remove the "beta" label
  • Possibly design a custom skin (colors and artwork) for the site, though I think that the development team hasn't had time to do that recently -- see also Allowing CSS customization of beta sites
  • Having moderator elections instead of appointed "pro tem" moderators, though I think the CMs haven't had time to do those either, recently

A while ago they graduated a bunch of beta sites, as an experiment, because those sites were more than 7 years old. This site now is 5.9 years old -- perhaps in June 2021 we could ask SE whether it would be convenient for them to let the site graduate, if the community wants it to.

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  • So out of ~500 users visiting per day only ~3 questions? That is quite peculiar.
    – user8527
    May 16 '20 at 16:05
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    Stack Overflow for example has 140M views/week and 70K questions, that's a ratio of 2000 to 1 isn't it. Most of the little questions I might ask about programming are already asked and answered by other users on that site, so I too am mostly only a visitor there. Still that's part of SE's purpose -- to create a useful resource for readers, e.g. for visitors who arrive on a topic via a search engine. IMO we as users should be conscious that there are many silent guests reading over our shoulder. :-)
    – ChrisW Mod
    May 16 '20 at 16:39
  • One thing that might get us to over 5 questions per day is a stricter multiple question policy. Nowadays people often post multiple questions in one and these are often better split imo.
    – user8527
    May 17 '20 at 11:58
  • I guess the problem is that these get answers before moderators can look at it so that splitting up the question would "vandalize" the answers
    – user8527
    May 17 '20 at 12:00
  • @116PУC Many of my questions have/had several sub-questions, I'd be a hypocrite to complain about someone else doing that. If it's a complicated problem it might take several sub-questions to explain the problem as I see it -- to ask the question -- in detail.
    – ChrisW Mod
    May 17 '20 at 16:12
  • Also our policy is to be very lenient/permissive with questions, I don't want to complain when someone posts a question. If you like though you could comment, something like, "You might get more detailed/specific answers if you split that to ask those as several distinct questions".
    – ChrisW Mod
    May 17 '20 at 16:17

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