Proposal: Mathematics Learning, Studying, and Education
Intro: I'm putting this question here in the context of the particular proposal because a moderator has recently deleted some comments that were discussing the issue of spreading votes out on questions to a maximum of ten per question to get the proposal moving along. There is quite some disagreement and it keeps breaking out into the comments of various questions. Let's discuss it here.
There's also a general Area51 discussion about this here.
Discuss 1: The point I've partly addressed already on the page linked above, the catch 22 about a site that involves a very particular area of expertise is that it will have to be regularly participated in by people who have the appropriate expertise and are particularly interested in the existence and continuation of that site. If you get involvement and votes from people outside that area during the Area51 stage where are they going to be when it goes beta or finally live?
Surely, the field itself has to be a significant one to start with before you could hope to get a ground swell big enough to maintain the continuity required for a web site. If the field has sufficient intellectual breadth and depth then good questions are going to abound. For example, Math.SE is a no brainer because of the sheer volume of mathematics being done in the world on a daily basis and its depth and breadth is unquestionable.
I realise there are two key factors to get a proposal off the ground: enough experts who are interested in helping other people and can "moderate" appropriate boundaries for the operation of the site by framing what they believe are appropriate questions and enough non experts hoping to use and learn from such a site that can indicate what questions would be useful to them to have answers for. A cart load of good questions is not enough as there have to be enough people with enough time between them to commit to such a site and to be able to answer those questions in a timely fashion.
It's not clear to me how "good" a question has to be before it's worth answering and before it should be considered as carrying weight towards a site proposal. If you don't get it and having it answered helps you progress in your area isn't that what it's about? As teachers we're always encouraging students to ask questions no matter how silly they may think they are and yet here we're pushing towards asking good questions which is going to discourage those students who are already unsure of themselves.
I realise I'm not expressing this very well but basing myself on the comments of others it's clear to me that the Area51 process is not that clear and having some people talk about it like they're just stating the obvious doesn't help.
So, it's not clear to me that the current rules for followers and voting proportions and so on are the most efficacious possible. It's not clear to me that spreading votes to the ten point boundary is necessarily bad. Where's the evidence beyond anecdote and taking peoples' words for it?
I'm not disagreeing, just discussing and looking for more clarity.
Additionally, on the page about proposing new SEs, there is emphasis about them being clear cut question and answer sites. Perhaps this discussion is prevalent here because questions pertaining to teaching practice aren't often clear cut and don't often have clear cut answers.