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Hot Network Questions like feature?


Initially HNQ's were the only reason I ever contributed to sites outside of Stack Overflow. In my opinion, a similar tool might be even more valuable in the early stages of Codidact's growth. I could see it increasing user engagement across communities.

Of course HNQ has had a controversial recent history in SE, with several examples of non work appropriate topics and trolling making their way to the HNQ bar. But I think rejecting a HNQ based on this is throwing the baby out with the bath water. I think this can be helped if sites have some degree of control over what posts are eligible for HNQ, or even if any posts in a community get shown at all.

Is there a plan to add a Hot Network Questions (HNQ) like feature?

Why should this post be closed?


3 answers


I think a system where sites can somehow nominate questions for broader publicity would be helpful, but I don't think we want to repeat the mistakes SE made with hot network questions. We've talked about this some but haven't done anything about it -- there are other features that we think are higher priorities for serving our communities.

Please (everybody), help us spread the word! Users of our network -- the people who would see hot questions if we had them -- are still a relatively small population. We'll probably reach more potential participants by (responsibly!) promoting our communities outside of this network. Did you see an interesting question? Tweet it or share it with your friends. Did you write something interesting here? Talk about it on your blog too (with a link). Do you know people who have specific interests in the topics covered by our sites? Talk with them directly.

Word of mouth is a powerful force and we can all help. Also, if you're on Twitter, consider following @CodidactQA -- and if you see interesting questions that deserve a wider audience, suggest them to that account. We tweet interesting questions every now and then but we're not experts in all the topics here, so we don't always know what's interesting!



A suggestion that I recall seeing on MSE is that hot network questions get a feature similar that protection on Stack Exchange where users need some (presumably very low) threshold of trust earned in the site to be able to vote on questions given broader visibility.

In Stack Exchange terms that means not counting the association bonus toward the ability to vote on HNQ questions.

To my mind this addresses one of the biggest deficiencies of the HQN: swarms of users not aware of the norms of the site distorting the quality metrics and utterly breaking the (already sadly weak) mapping between post score and community judgement of quality.

This is so important to me that I'd be in favor of it even with the site-nomination process that Monica suggests.



I think there needs to be criteria for why a post should end up there. Whom should the post be interesting to? There are two possible different audiences/scenarios:

  • This post is interesting to read for beginners of the topic or for anyone generally curious, who do not have any deeper knowledge of the topic.


  • This post is interesting to those with in-depth knowledge of the topic and follows certain tags on the specific site.

I don't really see the need to promote the latter kind network-wide.

SE kind of mixed these two. On SO, I had posts of mine end up on the HNQ a couple of times even when the topic was some nerdy, fairly advanced, programming language-lawyer thing that couldn't possibly be interesting to beginners, let alone a broader, general audience. I suspect it was some mod with specific personal interest in the tag who promoted them.

1 comment

The simplified algorithm for getting onto the HNQ is getting answered quickly and then lots of upvotes in short order. It wasn't something that mods could put questions onto Charlie Brumbaugh 7 days ago