Stack Overflow going downhill?


blog image 11 months ago
Stack Overflow going downhill?

Stack Overflow was created in 2008 by Jeff Atwood and Joel Spolsky, as a more open alternative to earlier Q&A sites such as Experts-Exchange. For many years, Stack Overflow has been one of the most popular resources for programmers trying to solve common problems. As questions on Stack Overflow were often among the first search results in any programming related Google search, users joined in large numbers and started asking their own questions.

As of July 2015, Stack Overflow had over 4,000,000 registered users and almost 10,000,000 questions (not counting deleted users and questions). However, a 2013 study has found that 77% of users only ask one question, 65% only answer one question, and only 8% of users answer more than 5 questions. The reason simply being that Stack Overflow makes new users feel very unwelcome.  Its new users have very little rights from the get-go. The need to gain “reputation” in order to gain privileges is irksome.  

Stack Overflow is a great website for the most part. It has a really awesome UI, huge user base, fast answers, and from which loads of developers have got help over the years. But the culture there sacrifices short-term help in some borderline cases, in favor of increasing Quality for its long-term archive. Here is hoping they would knock off the ugliness of automated, inflexible barriers that just won’t let you post certain things.

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