Is it just me or have the last few weeks seen a huge upsurge in people asking how they should design software , how they should code it, showing us their code and asking us to fix it?

There also seem to be many more questions asking us how software works, how to fix software install problems, etc?

1) am I just imagining this, or are others seeing it too? TO me, it's not just a minor increase, but a huge surge.

2) if so, is there anything we can do about it?

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    I experience the same, but I have been out of the 'First questions' queue for a while. I'm now revisiting especially to help weed out those questions. Is there a badge for voting to close XXX times ;-) ? – Jan Doggen Jan 18 at 12:13
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    To me it feels as if 8 out of 10 questions fall into that category. Whenever I walk the "new questions" announced in our chat room (which is twice a day, morning and evening), I close as much. – Izzy Jan 18 at 19:41
  • Yup, I see that. Is there anything that we can do about it? – Mawg Jan 18 at 21:07
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    As I mentioned on chat, since three weeks we are receiving like 4 times more questions than before. Many new people so we have some education to do. We are getting popular ^_^ – Nicolas Raoul Jan 19 at 3:28
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    I've noticed this too. It seems like a dramatic increase that started a few weeks ago. What is driving all these off-topic questions to our community? – RockPaperLizard Jan 19 at 5:56
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    New year's resolutions? – Mawg Jan 19 at 23:33
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    I come on regularly, but not noticed... until today. As @Izzy, observes - seems to be 8/10 of all posts. 3 explanations: malice - some fairly subtle trolling going on; wormholes - questions for SO/SU falling through a tear in time & space to SR (or some other technical issue); ignorance - some well-intended 3rd party is pointing people in our direction under the mistaken notion that this is the venue for such queries. While the 3rd might seem most likely, I do think it is the wormholes. – CJM Jan 28 at 13:35
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    @NicolasRaoul The point is that that education will for a large part be wasted time: first-time users that post e.g. an off-topic programming question will see their question closed, and then often leave and not come back. Those people may get a sense that they have to check on (other) SE sites for being on-topic, but that does not benefit this site. The harm has been done, Google will send more and more people. – Jan Doggen Jan 31 at 21:32
  • "some well-intended 3rd party is pointing people in our direction" - can any moderator look at incoming traffic and see whence it originates? – Mawg Feb 1 at 7:34

I suggest expanding the list of sites in the Close Vote reason Belongs on another site. That will at least give the 'offenders' more information than Blatantly off-topic (which they would have to read the tour for to understand why - and we know how much people read).

It would still require discipline from close-voters to distinguish questions that would be off-topic 'over there' as well (a bad question is a bad question).

  • I will second this, as it has been frustration me for a while. I think that anyone who votes to close because a question belongs on another site can either figure out which, else just close as off-topic. – Mawg Jan 18 at 19:31
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    In my experience, most of those questions are too VLQ to be migrated. A few might qualify for SuperUser. I'm not that active at any of the possible target sites that I'd migrate anything over (I do from time to time migrate between here and Android.SE as those are the two sites I'm really familiar with). Are there enough users familiar enough with any of the target sites? Far too often people migrate because of the name of the site (on Android.SE we often get "crap" from SU just because it mentioned Android)? If so, which targets? – Izzy Jan 18 at 19:45
  • Well, I am familiar enough with S.O :-) And, to be brutally frank, SuperUser is a generic dumping ground with - to me - no discernible ethos other than "I have a problem whit a computing device or program" – Mawg Jan 19 at 9:23

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