Pitching (scifi.stackexchange.com)

There are currently 15 StackExchange sites that have launched (i.e. made it past beta), excluding the original trilogy. The “elevator pitch” questions on their meta sites are:

I hoped to find some inspiration for the scifi.stackexchange.com elevator pitch by examining these successful sites.  Unfortunately (or perhaps not?) the majority of these questions focus on “taglines” rather than pitches – i.e. single sentences or sentence fragments that would take under a second to “pitch” (perhaps elevators are much faster in the US! – the blog post does say single-sentence).

It seems like this is mostly because of the history of StackExchange around this time – a decision was made to change from unique domains for each site (e.g. seasonedadvice.com) to generic subdomains of stackexchange.com (e.g. cooking.stackexchange.com) with unique branding.  As a result, the focus is typically on the branding – and in some cases is filled with complaints about that decision (maths, for some reason, has a bunch of answers concerned about commercialisation of the site in their elevator pitch question).

So Apple, Unix/Linux, CS-theory, English, TeX/LaTeX, photography, game development, webmasters, Ubuntu, and web applications aren’t really of any inspirational use.  There are some short pitches at gaming.stackexchange.com, but not very many.

I’m guessing that another reason that the pitches are so short is that it’s more clear what the site is.  If you’re familiar with StackOverflow, then it seems reasonably obvious what apple.stackexchange.com is.  This isn’t always the case – for example, is cooking.stackexchange.com only for professionals? (No).

So my hunt must continue. In the meantime, interest in this question on scifi.stackexchange.com has died down a little – which is probably bad, not good.  I’m thinking now that the best way to get this resolved is to indeed answer it myself (but community wiki, so that others can improve and especially shorten!), with perhaps one sentence and one paragraph versions.

Perhaps the FAQ’s of the launched sites will be more inspiring – that’s where I’m heading next (I’m also reading through several of the other meta sites, so that might also offer some illumination).


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