Every now and then I'm in the middle of a really intense and timely development session, and - as you already guessed - often bump into strange, unexpected behaviors of third-party modules. This causes an ask-around mode to be triggered in me. However, recently I got down-voted for https://drupal.stackexchange.com/questions/19075/anyone-else-seeing-exceptions-from-field-group-module where I admitted I already opened an issue in the project queue. Moreover, at the same time I got remarked by a person for making duplicate issues and off-topic discussion.

Why so? Isn't looking for help, for a person that might already have an answer, the core of Drupal Answer site?


3 Answers 3


For actual questions (which would be a support question in the issue queue), I think it is ok to ask in both places given the following:

  • Cross-reference the issue and your question
  • If you get an answer on either the issue or the question, update the other one with the answer so that both can be closed/answered.
  • It probably might make sense to first ask here and only try the issue queue if you don't get an answer after a while. Maintainers are usually very busy people and tired of being asked the same questions over and over again but if you have an interesting question that nobody else seems to know the answer, there is a bigger chance that they might help you.
  • I think this also goes along with the spirit of blog.stackoverflow.com/2010/11/…
    – mpdonadio Mod
    Commented Feb 24, 2012 at 13:35
  • That blog post is about duplicates on the same Stack Exchange site, not a question that is asked on an external site, and a Stack Exchange site.
    – apaderno Mod
    Commented Feb 25, 2012 at 21:42
  • Jeff cited that when I was asking about dups here, and on the main SO site.
    – mpdonadio Mod
    Commented Feb 26, 2012 at 0:53
  • Yes, but it's not about a post on Drupal.org, and a question on a Stack Exchange site. If the same user asks the exact same Drupal question on Stack Overflow, and Drupal Answers, it is probable the question is closed on Stack Overflow.
    – apaderno Mod
    Commented Mar 1, 2012 at 21:45

Moreover, at the same time I got remarked by a person for making duplicate issues and off-topic discussion.

Stack Exchange sites that are not meta sites (e.g. this very site is the meta site for Drupal Answers) are not for discussions.
On Stack Exchange sites you ask, "practical, answerable questions based on actual problems that you face." The FAQ says also, "chatty, open-ended questions diminish the usefulness of our site and push other questions off the front page." You don't ask for other users' opinion, but you ask them to use their expertise to resolve an actual problem you have.

What you are describing in the question is clearly a bug in the module; a module is not supposed to throw a warning about a wrong argument passed to foreach(). Questions about bugs on modules are considered off-topic on Drupal Answers; the reason is that Drupal Answers is not a replacement for the issue queue for the module, which is the only place the project's maintainers check for issue reports.
If it were not considered off-topic, the question would be too localized, as when the bug is fixed, the question is not anymore relevant to the future users. Questions on a Stack Exchange are not only for the OP, but also for future readers; that is the reason one of the closing reasons is, "too localized."
You are then asking which line is exactly causing the error, and that is another reason to consider the question too localized. How much users would be interested to know which line causes the error? Most of the users are interested in seeing the bug fixed.
The line number is already reported in the error message ("line 1641 of /sites/all/modules/field_group/field_group.module"); if you look at the source code of the module, which you installed, you would know what function is causing that error.

The question has been closed by a single user, but I would have closed it too for the reasons I reported here.

About the down-vote, that is automatically casted from the Community user for questions that are closed as off-topic. In your specific case, I don't see any down-votes, though.


There is a related thread here: Vote to adopt drupal.stackexchange.org as official support forum on drupal.org which I think goes at the heart of the issue.

IMO there is a grey area between a specific bug report and a discussion about the bug (here we are discussing a discussion about a bug :) It boils down to the level of "meta" information you are talking about and can get very subjective.

If you are voted down a lot, then the community is telling you something but it isn't your "fault". IMO stackexchange is compensating for defeciencies in drupal.org support and that is the root problem (or opportunity).

Perhaps thinking in "Meta" terms is a good test for whether it belongs here, there or in both places.

  • Grey area between bugreport and discussion is not an issue, as both are simply forbidden here.
    – Mołot
    Commented Jun 12, 2015 at 12:51

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