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The question:

https://superuser.com/questions/331125/why-would-moving-from-anything-microsoft-be-such-a-good-idea

According to @Random (who closed it) it was due to the likelyness of it 'solicit opinion, debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion'.

This is clearly not the case. I explicitly said (please, look at the first version if you want):

And please, I don't want, or need, any reasons why staying close to Microsoft would be a good idea.

This clearly eliminates any debate or opinion since the only valid answers is

  1. A reason against any products with Microsoft-branding, or
  2. Multiple reasons against any products with Microsoft-branding.

As you can see, the question in itself is not prone to causing any debate in any way from members who actually read the question.

EDIT: Was it due to the title of the question? Would it be appropriate naming it something along these lines:

'Why moving away from anything Microsoft would be such a good idéa', or

'Give me a list of arguments against anything Microsoft'

  • 3
    These titles are just as bad. The last takes the cake though. – Daniel Beck Sep 2 '11 at 14:29
10

Anything asking for a list of answers is marked as not constructive as they will "solicit opinion, debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion."

What we are looking for is not straw-polls on why you should or should not do something, what SU and the other StackExchange sites strive for are solid answerable questions. While yours is a valid question in some ways chances are that after some length of time you will likely end up with a long list of answers, all of which have some valid points and no way to choose which one is right.

SuperUser alone already has over 17,000 unanswered questions, and yours will likely sit in that pile, occasionally being dragged up by Community for someone to see and post yet another "M$ Office SUCKS, get LibreOffice" unhelpful answer.

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    This is, to para-phraze from a not-so-useful answer: (drumroll) constructive. Thank you! – Marcus Hansson Sep 2 '11 at 14:50
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The question is (*drumroll*) not constructive.

Quoting from the description of this reason to close:

this question will likely solicit opinion, debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion.

Even though you prohibited a (quite valid) point of view in your question, these reasons still apply in whether any given argument is actually valid or true.

All you'll get is a anti-Microsoft flame war.

  • 1
    There is nothing more to add here. – random Sep 2 '11 at 16:19
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It isn't constructive - period. That's the main reason, but to elaborate...

the only valid answers is

    A reason against any products with Microsoft-branding, or
    Multiple reasons against any products with Microsoft-branding.

This is totally the wrong focus for a business IT change.

Any organisation considering a major change should be focussed on what they are trying to achieve, what they want the systems to do and then drawing up a balanced, weighted list of what products could fit the needs, how well they fit the needs and then matching this to resonable expectations, budget, potential pitfalls, benefits etc. in order to find the best fit product. This is a major initiative - I'd expect it to take several weeks of planning before even considering product and brand names.

You can't just say 'anything but Microsoft' - discuss and expect an audience that has no knowledge of the inner workings of your business to provide solid advice - anecdotes from their perspective, yes, but you cannot just template these onto your business and believe you are up to speed and empowered to make recommendations - that's dangerous territory.

  • But is this site, or my question, anything about how a business IT change should be made? The first part was merely an anecdote describing the context (not the technical context, it´s a huge difference). For all you know I could be 12 years old and sitting in my bedroom. – Marcus Hansson Sep 2 '11 at 15:29
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    Hence the right answer is to not answer the question as no answer can be based on known facts. – Linker3000 Sep 2 '11 at 15:36
  • If I interpret that in the right way, you´re basically saying that if the context isnt right (say, someone asks a perfectly valid, unique, answerable question (no, not associated with my question, which isnt unique), but with a context that seems out of place, or strange, not plausible or anything that would be strange to implement or go through with, is a question that shouldnt be answered? That´s very strange. Either way, this question has an answer (ironically enough). – Marcus Hansson Sep 2 '11 at 15:44
  • No, I am saying that as an IT professional there is no way I would answer such a question on a Q&A site despite the fact that it is possible to answer it within the scope you provided. – Linker3000 Sep 2 '11 at 15:51
  • But you did answer? ;) – Marcus Hansson Sep 2 '11 at 16:01
3

I didn't see it as being about microsoft...

I saw it as "Why would it be a good idea to move from what we know works, to unknown software, just cause someone thinks its a good idea" - which it isn't, without a LOT of prep work. If you're doing it to 'save money', its false economy.

And of course, by picking the less tech savvy people first, you're forcing the people least capable of adjusting to adjust and...

Well, my feeling is, aside from asking a bunch of people, with no actual experience of your company's culture, it was generally a bad idea.

  • If you read the comment I did below first you will know what I will write next: For all you know, I could be 12 years old and sitting in my bedroom. Are you really considering only answering questions with a context that fits what you see fit and valid? The context should have nothing to do with neither the answer, nor the question. Dont misunderstand me; I understand why it is a bad thing to do this on a whim, but you have no idéa what my situation really is, or even if I work with this proffesionally. – Marcus Hansson Sep 2 '11 at 15:35
  • Also, I did not plan on actually making any decisions on this, it would merely be nice to have a list of arguments against products that (is very expensive, considering there are better, free alternatives) carries the Microsoft-branding. – Marcus Hansson Sep 2 '11 at 15:47
  • "you have no idéa what my situation really is" - nor would any other user. The answers are based off what information you give. Context is also essential - there's a difference between switching one staff member, and 50, or moving your IT department or your secratarial staff. While its subjective, looking at the required effort/results/disruption is something you'd need to do. If you can say 'the cost of moving our data and training our employees is less than that for the software' then, go ahead - that's the only real justification you need. – Journeyman Geek Sep 2 '11 at 15:53
  • It shouldn't be about branding at all. It should be about 'is this the most efficient way for us to do our business'. I've never let 'who' makes my software be a criteria - Its 'does it fit our budget, and is it $$ better than what i use now?' – Journeyman Geek Sep 2 '11 at 15:56
  • Fact is, it wasnt about the branding as much as about the costs of the licenses (and anything microsoft costs ALOT). Anyway, I think I should be the gentleman and stop commenting on a dead question (ie one that has an answer). – Marcus Hansson Sep 2 '11 at 16:01

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