Several benefits come with graduation, including the ability to set up migration paths to and from the site. This would entail a close option under close -> off-topic -> belongs on another site, which currently only has meta.PPCG as an option for non-moderators:


If three or more users vote to close using a "migrate to Stack Overflow" option, the question would then be locked and eventually deleted here, and it would immediately appear on Stack Overflow just like a normal question.

See this post on meta.SE for more information about how migration works.

The most likely migration target for now is Stack Overflow. Should we set up a migration path so that regular users can migrate off-topic questions to Stack Overflow?

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    \$\begingroup\$ Does anyone have an example of a question that was posted here and would not be closed on SO? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 2:38
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ @trichoplax Out of the last 25 questions migrated to Stack Overflow, only 3 were rejected. I'll try to get some more useful stats and maybe a list of all recent SO migrations in a second. \$\endgroup\$
    – Doorknob
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 2:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Doorknob It depends on what you mean by recent, but the tools page seems to indicate that we haven't had a single migration out since September. \$\endgroup\$
    – Geobits
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 2:47
  • \$\begingroup\$ This is the old question from '11. \$\endgroup\$
    – J Atkin
    Commented Feb 26, 2016 at 17:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ To be clear, five users still have to VTC the question, but only three have to select migrate to SO. \$\endgroup\$
    – ArtOfCode
    Commented Feb 28, 2016 at 17:03

2 Answers 2



I'm not sure we need any specific outbound migration paths right now. In the interests of Don't Migrate Crap, I think it's important to note that we rarely ever get a question that fulfills three basic criteria for migration:

1) Is off-topic here
2) Is on-topic elsewhere
3) Is not terribly written

Until we get more of them, I think it's not worth dedicating a route to specific sites. The easier it is to migrate crap, the more likely we'll be to migrate crap, and other sites won't thank us for it.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I agree completely. The few questions that actually should be migrated somewhere can be dealt with by moderators. \$\endgroup\$
    – Dennis
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 2:48
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    \$\begingroup\$ And if some of these features are implemented, we should get even less. \$\endgroup\$
    – grc
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 3:01
  • \$\begingroup\$ I'd also like to stress that this isn't intended to be a post that people point to three years from now to shoot it down immediately. I just mean that so far, we haven't been getting enough migration-worthy questions, not that we never will. \$\endgroup\$
    – Geobits
    Commented Mar 9, 2016 at 5:49


One of the most common types of off-topic questions we get are ones that would be better served on Stack Overflow, so we should make it easier for users to send content where it belongs. In fact, we already direct users to Stack Overflow in one of our close reasons.

That said, speaking as a (at least formerly) active user on Stack Overflow, I think that many of these questions would not be well received there in the form in which they end up here. However, at least they'd be in the right place. Here, the best we can say is "This is off topic." But on SO they can say, "What have you tried? Can you elaborate on this or that?" They actually have a shot at helping the misguided user with their question.

Geobits makes an excellent point that crap should not be migrated. So if we are to go forward with implementing this migration path, we should make sure that users know when—and more importantly when not—to migrate.

In all, I think we should go ahead with this. I think there are more benefits to having the path than to not having it.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I don't think that a question that fits better on Stack Overflow should be migrated. That's migration for the sake of migration, and just a waste of time for all people involved... \$\endgroup\$
    – Dennis
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 2:55
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Dennis I think that as long as it's off topic here, is on topic on SO, and isn't total crap, I see no reason why migrating would be a bad idea. \$\endgroup\$
    – Alex A.
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 2:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ But that doesn't happen all that often. If migration is easy, those few gems that somehow wound up in the wrong jewelery box will get migrated together with all the crap that should just be deleted. \$\endgroup\$
    – Dennis
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 2:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Dennis That's a fair point, but I think as long as we provided basic education on when and when not to migrate, I would trust users to use good judgement between voting to migrate and voting to delete. \$\endgroup\$
    – Alex A.
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 3:02
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    \$\begingroup\$ This might be a better idea in the future, when the privilege thresholds are higher. Right now, we have 870 users with the close vote privilege. I doubt that more than half of them are involved enough to be educated. \$\endgroup\$
    – Dennis
    Commented Feb 25, 2016 at 3:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ Like Dennis said, the frequency at which questions that should be on SO and aren't crap are posted here is too low to warrant a migration path via close voting. If the frequency ever gets to be high enough to be an issue, this can be discussed again, but currently we would very rarely use the migration path. \$\endgroup\$
    – user45941
    Commented Feb 29, 2016 at 21:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Mego I fail to see how not using regularly means it shouldn't be there at all. \$\endgroup\$
    – Alex A.
    Commented Mar 1, 2016 at 0:18
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    \$\begingroup\$ @AlexA. I'm saying that creating the migration path is putting the cart before the horse. If/when we start having an issue, we can create a migration path. \$\endgroup\$
    – user45941
    Commented Mar 1, 2016 at 0:28
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ @Mego I don't know. I still just don't see how it could hurt to just have it there, even if it's not solving any problems. But I think I'm in the minority on that. \$\endgroup\$
    – Alex A.
    Commented Mar 1, 2016 at 0:33

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