Example: https://codegolf.stackexchange.com/questions/109337/java-program-for-build-report

this user just copy and pasted some homework assignment, which is not appropriate for any SE site. However, we referred them to SO. People like to post in chat things like

Please get your question closed on Stack Overflow instead

and comments on that question included:

We won't do your homework for you on this site, and neither will Stack Overflow.

which asks the question: why do we refer them there?

How should we deal with general programming questions that are also clearly off topic for Stack Overflow as well, so referring them there is inappropriate?

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ This answer on stack overflow is a good starting place for both the homework-answer-seekers and site users. Of course, it is not as relevant here, but it's a resource we could point the askers towards \$\endgroup\$ Feb 8, 2017 at 5:25

1 Answer 1


We should be a bit nicer. We get a lot of homework questions, and it can get tiring to close them all the time. But, we need to remember to Be Nice.

We still need to close the questions (since they're blatantly off-topic), but using a canned comment like the following would be better:

Welcome to Programming Puzzles & Code Golf! We are a programming challenge site, so your question is not on topic for our site. Stack Overflow may be able to help, but be sure to read through their help center (specifically the parts about writing good questions), because your question would be closed there too in its current form.

  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ There's a little caveat with this canned comment. We should NOT link to Stack Overflow's home page - folks over there are already irritated enough by people not even taking a look at the Help Center, so it's much better to direct the askers of homework questions to stackoverflow.com/help/on-topic or stackoverflow.com/help/how-to-ask than to stackoverflow.com. \$\endgroup\$
    – SE is dead
    Feb 8, 2017 at 13:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ Do you think this would be worth having a separate close reason? \$\endgroup\$
    – xnor
    Feb 8, 2017 at 20:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ @xnor We already have a custom close reason for general programming questions \$\endgroup\$
    – user45941
    Feb 8, 2017 at 22:34

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