Most of the questions are the same (configurations, non-programming) and it would benefit from having more people looking at questions. Some of those sites don't get a lot of traffic, the response rate is slow, and have many unanswered questions.
2Why not also merge with AskDifferent (after all, MACs can run windows and Linux), databases and seasoned advice. (The latter because a PC is so handy as a timer when cooking).– HennesJan 11, 2017 at 20:59
Possibly the 1st, but AskDifferent also deals with phones & tablets too. DBA.StackExchange can remain separate because SQL it its own language with many variations. Very few power users and dev ops would know what an outer join is. Cooking is unrelated.– ChloeJan 11, 2017 at 21:07
5I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because ask it affects several sites it should be asked on meta.se– DavidPostill ModJan 11, 2017 at 21:16
5@DavidPostill It might affect several sites but it affects very specific sites. Getting it directly before the audiences of those sites would help more, even if it starts off as just one site being asked first.– Grace Note StaffModJan 11, 2017 at 21:24
Yes this needs to go on MSE. However I will say, remove the two Ask* sites. I dunno about the Apple one but AskUbuntu is branded and is their official community support site (see ubuntu.com/support/community-support), it was made special and isn't getting merged anywhere. Also it probably goes without saying but unless you can make a really strong case here, like way more than you've got in this post, you won't get community support for this from those communities, and in any case it's a pretty safe bet that this isn't happening.– Jason CJan 11, 2017 at 21:28
(Btw I'm almost certain similar discussions have happened in the past, be sure to do some thorough research first, too.)– Jason CJan 11, 2017 at 21:32
6Each site was created to fill a need that the previous sites didn't satisfy. The reason to eliminate/merge sites would be that the site isn't serving its purpose for its members. Do you think the majority of members at those sites would agree?– fixer1234Jan 11, 2017 at 21:49
4Do you have any statistics to back up your assertion that these sites don't get much traffic? Bear in mind that they cater to different audiences.– BurgiJan 11, 2017 at 21:58
Reopened since the powers that be seem to think it belongs here, and well, I felt it needed addressing– Journeyman Geek ModJan 12, 2017 at 1:03
1Excellent idea. +1– user1061912May 10, 2020 at 20:59
I feel (entirely biasedly) that this proposal seems to miss a lot of context and community culture.
First and formost, most of these sites are successful by Stack Exchange standards and have met all the requirements for graduation. Where they didn't, they still have large self sustaining communities capable of answering questions.
Lets start with 2/3rd of the trilogy - Serverfault and Superuser. Superuser's all about the 'pet systems' individual systems, stuff you run at home. I prefer serverfault for 'big picture' things - infrastructure, servers and such. Something like this belongs on SF as does anything about running IT and services.
Askubuntu is a Q&A site officially supported by Ubuntu, and was an early and rather successful experiment that didn't quite get repeated. It has its own vibrant community and serves the wider ubuntu community pretty well.
U&L is interesting. It does fit quite neatly into the scope SU and SF have but in many cases the community there's really good at very difficult problems. SU's pretty broad, and sometimes you need depth. You're going to have to exercise the peewee herman rule in deciding where to go.
I've never been to ask different, but at the very least, while they intersect with our scope, they cover things outside ours (like iphones and apple watches) that arn't served elsewhere and probably have the same sort of depth in their subject matter U&L would have
I'd like to address a few statements made in the question specifically.
Some of those sites don't get a lot of traffic
and have many unanswered questions.
Once again, needs context. Not all questions are trivially answerable. I suspect I'd have better luck with some of my questions on U&L than the much bigger superuser.
SO has 3,671,063 to 108,223, though it would probably be fairer to look at the proportion to our total number of questions.
Luckily, there's actually a scoreboard of this here - SO has 72%, Askubuntu has 66% we have 68%, as does ask different and U&L has 77%. So with some leeway, we arn't doing that much worse than SO. (Workplace and parenting have 100%. Darned overachievers ;) )
Most of these are the top tech sites and have a reasonable amount of questions per day. AU actually has more than ours.
Superuser and Askubuntu are the second and third busiest sites on the network
the response rate is slow
That's relative. I'd like numbers there, and its worth considering that some questions that are actually hard take time to answer.
That's ... kinda narrow minded. We cover hardware to an extent (which U&L and the others don't). While historically we've had a single, monolitihic site for programming, it does not necessarily mean that model works everywhere. As someone who generally dosen't code, but has spent time in other parts of the IT industry, there's so much more to computers than coding.
So, while I don't speak for Stack Exchange as a company - its unlikely to happen. And if it does, the communities involved will be poorer for it.
4People would kill for the traffic those websites get.– RamhoundJan 12, 2017 at 1:49
What does culture have to do with anything? Either the answer is correct or incorrect. I'll just cross-post to all the sites.– ChloeJan 13, 2017 at 5:20
1Community culture is a general, broad term of how people behave here. You maximise the chances of getting an answer through understanding what makes people tick on a site. As for crossposting [ it is strongly discouraged](meta.stackexchange.com/questions/64068/…) and is likely to get people annoyed at you.– Journeyman Geek ModJan 13, 2017 at 5:37
@Chloe eh, correct is a spectrum. Answers on U&L tend to be more ... pedantic ... than those on AU. As for cross-posting, your questions could end up being closed just for that.– muruJan 13, 2017 at 5:52