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The WordPress proposal on Area 51 is still in commitment phase, and there isn't really an existing site that addresses WordPress (or any other CMS when it comes to using it - development questions should be OK on StackOverflow). But when I think of webmastering (is that even a word?) I think of concerns that cut across the specific tools and technologies that you use. The closest thing that a webmaster could be worried about in terms of tools is choosing the right one to deploy.

Now, I could be way off base here, but I'm thinking that the emphasis should be on the cross-cutting concerns that exist regardless of what tool or tools are being deployed.

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Actually, I would assume Web Apps is the correct place for all non-programming based questions about Wordpress. Isn't wordpress a Web App after all?

I know the lines are more muddled on this as some people would push that a Webmaster would be able to answer these questions. I think anything that doesn't involve setting up Wordpress on a host or server or some specific SEO question/issue doesn't belong here.

Thoughts?

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    It depends on how you define Web Application. I don't include WordPress as a Web App, but I do include Google Calendar. It's not a well-defined term, really. Where do you draw the line between web site and web app. Either way, it doesn't matter. I just made this question because the core community - the hard core webmasters - should draw the line as to if WordPress questions are going to be allowed and to what extent. – Thomas Owens Jul 28 '10 at 23:21
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    Technically, Wordpress is a CMS, since it intercepts every URL request and handles its own session. I'd hardly call it a web app. – Talvi Watia Sep 17 '10 at 10:19
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I disagree. WordPress is a tool that many webmasters use, just like Java and C++ are tools many programmers use. You could do StackOverflow site that only focused on generic programming problems and paradigms, but that would be very limiting. The two are not entirely analogous, but close enough IMHO.

For the record, I've never used WordPress nor do I ask/answers questions on that topic.

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We've always been worried about overlap, its not at all specific to Wordpress. There are a considerable amount of questions that would do equally well on Server Fault, as well as some that would be a great fit for Stack Overflow. What remains is, they are also a great fit for this web site, so I see no reason to close them.

The context of the question is what determines if it is or is not on topic here. For instance, I think this question is a great example of something that is very much on topic. Other examples would be questions that ask for help with organizing blogs, various ways to re-write links, the effectiveness of various plug-ins, etc.

A question asking about deprecated functions in Wordpress, even in the context of modifying a theme should probably be asked (or already has been asked) on Stack Overflow.

I didn't commit to or join Web Applications, but my understanding of the proposal and subsequent site is that it was about the use of third party web services and (possibly) their APIs. While yes, Wordpress could be considered a web app, I think such questions are more appropriate here, at least in the majority of cases.

There is also the other, strictly Wordpress SE site that is brewing on Area 51. I don't know when or if that is going to reach the beta phase, so I'm really not considering it yet when thinking about what is on topic for this site.

As @RandomBen said, yes .. the lines are a little bit muddled. However, I think Wordpress is a very popular tool amongst Webmasters and we should be entertaining (most) questions about it.

Finally, I could also say that Webmin is also a 'web app', but that doesn't make questions about installing or using it any less appropriate for Server Fault, or any more on topic for Web Applications.

  • +1 Good points Tim. We will just have to keep watching for how this evolves. – Ben Hoffman Jul 29 '10 at 13:26
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WordPress has gotten a terrible rap on the SO sites because at one time it was used as an example of software that you could not ask questions about. At one time people would vote against legitimate WP questions because that's what the FAQ on SuperUser seemed to indicate. I can't find it now, but I remember a WP question on SO shunted to SU, then closed as off-topic. Talk about "screw you, person looking for help!"

WordPress further is confusing because you have to distinguish several different layers of meaning. A self-hosted WordPress site (using the code from WordPress.org) is similar but not the same to a WordPress site hosted on the wordpress.com servers. So some questions truly legitimately can apply to both. Some questions have been killed before that determination gets made. The SuperUser FAQ is really against the .com version, for which we now have https://webapps.stackexchange.com/.

WordPress is further saddled with forums that truly, truly suck. It NEEDS a well organized support forum very badly. Threads get closed, it's difficult to tell legitimate answers from crud, and questions for one version don't necessarily help you with another. It pains me to see the Area51 proposal stuck in commit phase. A StackExchange site would be great for WordPress and remove the burden of "stupid off topic WordPress questions" on the other SE sites.

  • good point about wordpress.com servers. Its kinda like someone running a myspace, blogger or facebook account and thinking they are a webmaster. Well webmaster maybe, but a professional one? – Talvi Watia Sep 17 '10 at 10:22

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