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There appears to be a spate of migrating questions to raspberrypi.stackexchange.com just because they mention Raspberry Pi.

A recent example is https://raspberrypi.stackexchange.com/questions/42307/operating-landline-phone-via-mobile-phone

Why?

Do those who refer these even read the question?

Unless the question is something uniquely specific to the Pi it ends up being closed as "off topic".

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    \$\begingroup\$ More to the point: some people migrate with the reasoning "It would get closed here, maybe it is well received over there, lets give it a second chance over there" \$\endgroup\$ – PlasmaHH Feb 8 '16 at 11:22
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    \$\begingroup\$ @PlasmaHH Rather stunning that a question about how to intercept land line transmissions would be considered inappropriate and hence likely to "get closed here". I guess all those IEEE documents were not written by electrical engineers after all, or else they were just acting outside their general purvey in designing physical level telecommunications protocols. What is EE.SE for, how to correctly connect batteries? \$\endgroup\$ – fizzle Feb 8 '16 at 11:39
  • \$\begingroup\$ @starfish: shopping questions are offtopic, regardless what device you are shopping for. \$\endgroup\$ – PlasmaHH Feb 8 '16 at 11:40
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    \$\begingroup\$ THANK YOU for bringing this up. \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Feb 8 '16 at 12:14
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    \$\begingroup\$ First, let's at least be clear that the questions certainly didn't belong here, whether it belonged somewhere else or not. Given that, I can't get too worked up on what exactly happened to it and why, as long as it's not open here. If the OP doesn't like that, he needs to learn to post a good question and in the right place. Otherwise, hopefully he does feel kicked in the butt on the way out the door. \$\endgroup\$ – Olin Lathrop Feb 8 '16 at 13:06
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    \$\begingroup\$ @starfish You're missing the big part - relaying a call to the cell phone. Do you believe the question should've been answered with a detailed explanation how to design your own GSM cell? If this is not too broad, what is? \$\endgroup\$ – Dmitry Grigoryev Feb 11 '16 at 16:52
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    \$\begingroup\$ @DmitryGrigoryev You're missing the big part: If a question is too broad, it should be closed as too broad and then an explanation of why it is too broad provided, etc. Instead, your mod decided "Ah, why bother with this crap? I could care less about being useful, I will just shovel it over to someone else's desk." He's obviously infamous for doing this elsewhere, and I have certainly noticed it as a pattern at Rpi.SE. \$\endgroup\$ – fizzle Feb 11 '16 at 16:55
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    \$\begingroup\$ @starfish How do you know RPi doesn't have a landline phone interface and a GSM receiver? Maybe the question is not too broad after all in RPi context? \$\endgroup\$ – Dmitry Grigoryev Feb 11 '16 at 17:08
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    \$\begingroup\$ The question under scrutiny should have had its assumptions challenged, and the user could have been invited to chat. This opportunity was missed by disallowing the normal community process. \$\endgroup\$ – Sean Boddy Feb 12 '16 at 19:26
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It got migrated cause it mentioned RPI. That's all. By the same mod who migrates any question with Arduino or Cars in the question as well. Within minutes of being posted. With no one down voting or close voting. Single handedly. Even though we have a don't migrate to betas or don't migrate crap policy. Migration Guidelines Re: Arduinos

The only way for this to stop is if users and mods of those sites continue to complain.

See https://mechanics.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/1464/led-lights-question , Question migration anti-patterns: Skeptics SE, Post Moved to Rasberry Pi Site, Why was http://electronics.stackexchange.com/questions/182864/arduino-relay-shield migrated?, Another bad migration to Arduino for another examples.

Most notably, even another mod has point out these "knee jerk" migrations:

Yes, Nick tends to knee-jerk migrate any post that merely mentions Raspberry Pi or Arduino, without considering whether the question is really appropriate for the destination site.

shareeditflag edited Oct 12 '15 at 0:18 answered Oct 12 '15 at 0:13

Dave Tweed♦

I've basically been told to shut-up about it since apparently I'm the only one that cares on EE.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ It is a pity that these spurious migrations are anonymous (at least to normal users. \$\endgroup\$ – Milliways Feb 8 '16 at 12:21
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Milliways no they aren't. Migrated questions have a text saying Migrated from x.stackexchange.com. Click on the link and it will take you to the revision history for the question on the original site. And that lists who Migrated or when. Questions migrated by community consensus (5 users voting to close as migrate) will list them instead of a single mod. electronics.stackexchange.com/posts/216039/revisions \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Feb 8 '16 at 12:24
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    \$\begingroup\$ Initially I was in favor of migrating things to where they would get better answers, but this is getting out of control. \$\endgroup\$ – Matt Young Feb 8 '16 at 15:20
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    \$\begingroup\$ You're not the only one who finds the moderation heavy-handed and aggressive towards beginners. \$\endgroup\$ – pjc50 Feb 8 '16 at 15:51
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    \$\begingroup\$ -1. Whatever point you are trying to make is lost in the gratuitous and unseemly mod-bashing. The mods do a pretty good job on largely thankless janitorial duties. Occasionally migrating something you wouldn't have is going to happen. Pointing it out nicely is fine. This post is not. It also looks like you publicly posted private communication from a mod. That's really not cool. \$\endgroup\$ – Olin Lathrop Feb 8 '16 at 18:09
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    \$\begingroup\$ @olin private communication, posted by that mod as an answer to one of the linked meta questions? And you, telling people to point things out nicely? Pot. Pot. Pot. \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Feb 8 '16 at 18:15
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    \$\begingroup\$ @olin pointing out a problem that's caused only by one mod is not mod bashing. \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Feb 8 '16 at 18:16
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    \$\begingroup\$ @pjc50 Migrating is aggressive? So, can you tell us what the appropriate action was? \$\endgroup\$ – Dmitry Grigoryev Feb 11 '16 at 16:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ @DmitryGrigoryev how about letting five users with enough rep vote to close instead of abusive mod actions that people on other sites don't agree with? \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Feb 11 '16 at 21:42
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Yes it probably shouldn't have been migrated because Stack Exchange has a Don't migrate crap policy. I suspect PlasmaHH is right in a comment that is was migrated with the reasoning "It would get closed here, maybe it is well received over there, lets give it a second chance over there".

It probably should have just been closed here as an off-topic shopping question because it seems they were after an off-the-shelf solution, or as too broad if they intended to make something themselves because designing something from scratch would be a large undertaking.

Given that moderators can't be familiar with the norms of every site on the network I don't disagree with the decision to give migration a try, after all if the OPs question had just been outright closed here without any possibility of further answers that wouldn't have done them any favors.

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    \$\begingroup\$ There's a difference between asking how to do something and saying, "I need one of these because it can do that". The OP wasn't even at the point where "shopping recommendations" makes any sense. If I asked a question about how to reduce incoming DC voltage, is that a "shopping recommendation" because someone is bound to mention electrical components in the answer? \$\endgroup\$ – fizzle Feb 8 '16 at 11:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ One point to consider with the "don't migrate crap" policy is that what is crap here, might be a gem elsewhere. It is not possible for a mod to have all rules of all other sides in their head, and after all there is the "migration rejected" possibility essentially saying "nop, thats crap here too, lets put it to sleep" \$\endgroup\$ – PlasmaHH Feb 8 '16 at 11:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ @PlasmaHH, yes I don't disagree with the migration for that reason to give it a possible second chance - I might update the answer to reflect that. \$\endgroup\$ – PeterJ Feb 8 '16 at 11:46
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    \$\begingroup\$ @starfish: Mentioning to use an RPi is a very good sign that the question should be read as "what device that I can just plug in to do what I want should I buy"; besides that the question is at the high level of "what to plug in where and it works" instead of the level of underlying protocols and technologies. To pick up your point, asking how to reduce 12V DC to 5V DC is ontopic, but asking "I have a 12V car battery and need a device to plug in to run my RPi" is clearly asking for shopping advice. \$\endgroup\$ – PlasmaHH Feb 8 '16 at 11:47
  • \$\begingroup\$ Millways here is a RPI user, not the OP of the question migrated. He isn't asking for a solution, just no more blind migrations. \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Feb 8 '16 at 12:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Passerby missed that! I'll update to reflect that. \$\endgroup\$ – PeterJ Feb 8 '16 at 12:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ Given that moderators can't be familiar with the norms of every site on the network Considering most migrations are to two or three sites, they should be. Or they should be speaking with the mods of the target site before migrating. Or you know, not abusing mod powers to remove questions they dislike. \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Feb 8 '16 at 12:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ Oh, as to the question being too large an undertaking, it is not. All OP needs is Asterisk. \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Feb 8 '16 at 13:11
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Passerby: "Or they should be speaking with the mods of the target site before migrating." Exactly! The established protocol is to ask the mods of the target site before migrating (in a special chat room for all mods). Nick almost never does this; he just tosses it over the wall to see what sticks. \$\endgroup\$ – Dave Tweed Feb 8 '16 at 13:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ @DaveTweed What's wrong with migrating the question you'd close anyway? Speaking with the mods will take about as much time, if not more, than migrating and letting them close the question if they don't like it too. \$\endgroup\$ – Dmitry Grigoryev Feb 11 '16 at 16:57
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    \$\begingroup\$ @DmitryGrigoryev: Because of the rule that says "don't migrate crap". You've already decided the question is crap here -- if you can't decide whether the question will also be crap on the destination site yourself, you need to give that site's moderators a chance to look at it before attempting migration. But it's usually pretty obvious -- most questions are closed for being "too broad" or "a shopping question" or "request for opinion", reasons that are off-topic on pretty much any SE site. It's a relatively small number of questions that need such special handling. \$\endgroup\$ – Dave Tweed Feb 11 '16 at 17:18
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I think it got migrated because 'Makers' (Raspberry Pi, et. al.) and 'EEs' are two completely different gamuts. Like a sniper and a gunsmith - the sniper may be very good at changing scopes, magazines, and rounds, but they really have no business asking the gunsmith how to mod it to fire automatically.

Makers are users of technology, where as EE's are creators of technology. Some makers learn just enough to plug board A into board B without it blowing up (in one day), whereas EE's spend months, years of their lives designing boards A and B. Makers learn that an output cannot be connected to another output the hard and fast way, while the EE's that designed those outputs carefully favored high-speed, low impedance over circuit protection. In short, the EE's have dealt with (read: cried, pulled hair out over) the hundreds, thousands of nitty-gritty details, whereas the maker doesn't care about these at all. The OP clearly asks for a plug-and-play solution to a complex problem; so not wanting to put in any effort to understand it themselves, it was "swept under the rug." After a few dozen such questions, it becomes easy just to sweep anything with "R Pi" in it under the rug.

I think the answer to whether migrating this specific one was right or wrong, will depend on whom is asked. Of course the asker wants it answered, but the answerers don't want to be bothered. As a site rule though, it should not have been migrated. (It likely would have then received the standard barrage of "What have you tried so far?" and "We don't do homework here" kinds of comments, then closed as off-topic or shopping.)

Now I suppose it's possible to 'learn electronics' from the top-down, but there are two issues with this: 1. The Maker may not even care about the lower levels. If they do, then great, but they should research the lower levels first. 2. The EE definitely was not trained this way, and may insist everyone else learn the fundamentals first like they did. In either case, we are not a complete EE degree education institution here, and cannot be expected to answer such questions.

Dave Jones had a nice video about insisting makers learn the fundamentals so that they were not completely lost, however I can't find it now. It may have received too much flack and been removed. (Imagine that.)

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  • \$\begingroup\$ +1 Very insightful. \$\endgroup\$ – Nick Alexeev Feb 17 '16 at 5:34
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    \$\begingroup\$ I remember that video, I'm pretty sure it was an eeVBlab. \$\endgroup\$ – Matt Young Feb 17 '16 at 18:39
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    \$\begingroup\$ Ahh yes Matt, here it is: youtube.com/watch?v=zyuRcsM0gjI \$\endgroup\$ – rdtsc Feb 18 '16 at 20:17
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    \$\begingroup\$ Closing was probably the right answer. Migrating wasn't. Regardless, not everyone here is aspiring to be a pro EE. Among our questions with a score higher than 100 is "What is a decoupling capacitor?" This one question was perhaps unrecoverable, but the community process to handle that wasn't even used. This is supposed to be about sharing experience, not frantically drawing imaginary lines between different types of tinkerers and technicians. \$\endgroup\$ – Sean Boddy Feb 27 '16 at 21:12
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This Question:

https://arduino.stackexchange.com/questions/20767/sinking-80-ma-from-a-microcontroller-without-any-driver-circuit

also got migrated out of EE into Arduino, despite it clearly being generic to a range of MCUs/platforms.

not surprisingly, they've put it on hold as off-topic. Why would it not belong in EE?

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    \$\begingroup\$ we could engage in name-calling for just about any "stupid question" that comes along a dozen times a day, but that's not productive. "noobies" don't read the datasheet all the time - when that's the case, that's the response it deserves (whether or not the Q is then closed); the question was clearly NOT Arduino-specific, so it wasn't appropriate to transfer it there. \$\endgroup\$ – Techydude Feb 17 '16 at 21:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ Because calling people dicks or a variation on that is appropriate behavior... \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Feb 18 '16 at 2:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ You should post this as it's own question as well. That that question remains closed is ridiculous. \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Feb 18 '16 at 2:27
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Migrating this question was actually not a bad idea. I remember it had received an answer or RPi, which I commented on. I'm no expert in VoIP so I can't tell whether it made much sense, but at least it looked like a reasonable suggestion. So the migration wasn't a total waste of everyone's time, at least until that answer got deleted.

The question is indeed too broad and could have been closed as such. But since it mentioned RPi, people here at EE.SE had to assume that it was answerable in RPi context. If I didn't know what RPi is, I would have assumed the same and decided to migrate it as well. You can't expect Electronics SE admins to know what RPi is capable of, to judge if RPi questions are answerable. Imagine tomorrow someone asks how to connect a camera to the RPi. For EE.SE, this question is way too broad, as there is a multitude of video interfaces and protocols. In RPi context, this is perfectly answerable, as RPi only has one compatible camera, with conveniently soldered compatible connector. Would you prefer such questions to be closed or migrated? Or should EE.SE admins keep track of every RPi accessory or Arduino "shield" to be able to judge?

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    \$\begingroup\$ I think "don't migrate crap" still wins out. The preferred mechanism would be multiple manual flags calling for migration, as the "official" migration options absolutely reek. \$\endgroup\$ – Scott Seidman Feb 11 '16 at 16:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ Wouldn't the question get closed before any migration flags show up? Also, I believe you missed my point. How can someone here know if it's too broad for RPi? Imagine the same question asked about GSMPi, would you still close it? \$\endgroup\$ – Dmitry Grigoryev Feb 11 '16 at 17:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ "I remember it had received an answer on RPi, which I commented on." -> Wrong. It received an answer on EE before it was migrated, the answer went with it and it is after that when you left a comment. When the migration was rejected (note that if a migrated question is closed for any reason, it is automatically "migration rejected"), that answer and your comment on it was deleted by the system. \$\endgroup\$ – fizzle Feb 11 '16 at 17:22
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    \$\begingroup\$ If you don't know for sure it's on topic for a site, and don't want to bother trying to ask someone that will be sure (i.e. that site's mod) DONT MIGRATE. Its not hard. \$\endgroup\$ – Passerby Feb 11 '16 at 21:44
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Passerby isn't migrating and getting the migration rejected the equivalent of asking and getting NO as the answer? Both consume about the same amount of time of both admins. \$\endgroup\$ – Dmitry Grigoryev Feb 12 '16 at 7:35

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