And others, which failed during Beta. I see some of our stats are poor:

  • 3.1 questions per day
  • 220 visits per day

On the other hand, the number of core users and questions is good.

So, the real question: How can we avoid failure in Beta?

  • 7
    About Biblical Hermeneutics, it looks like it is doing worse than this site (though it is younger). Perhaps we should revisit the decision to split? Dec 21, 2011 at 7:30
  • 1
    Note: our current stats are quite similar to atheism's when it died. Not sure what conclusion to draw, but perhaps an extra warning that we really need new visitors! Dec 21, 2011 at 16:15
  • 6
    Religion is so touchy, if someone doesn't like a question then they -1 it. It's a real turn off to new people to want to be a part of this. There are a core group of responders and it's only their views that get consideration. You may not agree with me, but that is what I felt and thought. After the second day, I was ready to unsign up.
    – user1054
    Dec 22, 2011 at 20:47
  • 1
    @DanAndrews: really sorry to hear that, Dan. I do understand where you're coming from: some sites can be clique. This one should not be; by definition we should be welcoming! Sorry that has not been your experience, please don't let it put you off. Perhaps you could highlight your experiences in a question here on meta (mark as discussion). We could learn a lot from your experience. Dec 22, 2011 at 21:10
  • 2
    @Dan, I'm pretty impressed with the tact of said 'core group' in being pretty respectful of my minority Catholic viewpoint. Although I have had to be a bit more active than other users to get the same amount of rep.
    – Peter Turner Mod
    Dec 23, 2011 at 17:47
  • 4
    I couldn't agree with @DanAndrews more. There just seems to be more emphasis placed on the "rules"...which I find kind of ironic/expected from a site all about religion
    – user1067
    Dec 27, 2011 at 19:47

3 Answers 3


Looking at our stats today, we are at:

  • 506 visits /day - We just broke into OK!
  • 4.9 questions /day - Just a little bit shy of OK!

And of course, everything else is excellent.

Basically, I think we can say, we have awesome content, we just need more exposure.

I know these will drop over the weekend, and I know we still have a ways to go, but we are making progress!

  • 1
    Yeah, I check this almost every day because there's really not another good metric for laymen. In the last two weeks we've passed Skeptics and Project Management and I'd bet we'll overtake Writing in a week. Role-playing Games, from what I can tell, is on the cusp of moving out of beta so that should be what we need to aim for.
    – Peter Turner Mod
    Feb 9, 2012 at 18:04
  • Great news, everyone! Hopefully my fears were unfounded. Now, we need the same with BH. Feb 9, 2012 at 18:40
  • as of today (April 3), looks like the questions have hovered around ~4.5 but the views are up a bit to ~850. Evidently we've got more people visiting but not enough of them participating. Apr 3, 2012 at 18:17

It would be a shame if it was. I think this is a pretty swell site and probably one of the only places many people will come in to contact with Christianity in their daily lives.

To poorly paraphrase Chesterton in reference to our low pageviews.

it's not that Christianity.SE has been tried and found wanting it's that Christianity.SE has been found difficult and left untried.

In fact, in it's inception we had really high pageviews and probably the best numbers since programmer.SE. Of course, these free-for-alls must be tempered, but and for whatever reason biblical-hermanueitisics or whatever came in and stole our our scholars (or at least our aspirations for scholarship).

My hope is that that site dies and this site can get rolling, others hope this site dies so that site can get rolling. I'm sure Satan would prefer both sites to die. But if any site is to live, we need to be doing our own SEO and ask, answer, close and delete questions to promote the kind of site we want.

  • 2
    I disagree that BH.SE stole the scholars. The people we lost who were strongly active in the beginning just seemed to fade away--they didn't end up at BH.SE. The population is pretty segregated between the two sites--with only a handful of crossovers.
    – Richard
    Dec 20, 2011 at 17:01
  • 5
    @Richard I don't visit BH simply because I think those questions belong here and I don't want to encourage it as a separate site (nor do I want to have to split my time between them, it simply shouldn't be necessary)
    – Waggers
    Dec 21, 2011 at 13:55
  • 1
    @Waggers: The Bible does not belong to Christians alone. Half of it (plus) actually belongs to the Jewish faith and all of if belongs to Western Culture. On BH.SE, we do not require Christian interpretations: rather we encourage more neutral viewpoints. Frankly, I don't read C.SE very often as I don't find many of the questions interesting. And many of the most active members of BH.SE are even less interested than I am. Merging the sites will not buy you many new contributors (if any). Jan 3, 2012 at 3:58
  • 3
    @Jon That's not factually accurate. The Bible is very much a Christian thing. The Jewish holy book is the Torah; yes it's pretty much the same as the Christian Old Testament but they have different names, which is not reflected in the site title at BH. The "Western Culture" argument is only relevant if you first acknowledge that this culture is derived from Christianity. There are several questions here that don't interest me but that's no reason to farm them off to a separate site.
    – Waggers
    Jan 3, 2012 at 7:08
  • @Waggers: I urge you to read the top questions on the BH site before casting judgement on it. We have long struggled with the title and I don't think anyone is fully happy with it. (And I wish someone would explain why two sites that sometimes, but not often, overlap is problem to be avoided. I fail to see the problem.) Jan 3, 2012 at 16:09


It seems that the criteria for a site going live is having enough momentum to build a community.

From Joel's blog

A site that’s not really functioning is a trap for the unwary. The few users who do, accidentally, land there are lured into asking questions which will not be answered or will not be answered well. Even if are a few people around, if they don’t have enough collective expertise to give good answers, the site is a net negative for human knowledge.

Essentially, a site has to have "critical mass". But how do they measure critical mass?

There are actually several metrics they use, however there are two which are most important. From that same blog post, the two critical metrics:

People: Do we have a lot of people visiting the site? Are a lot of people signing up? How many people are answering questions? How many page views does the site generate?

Questions: Are questions getting answered? Are they answered well? Are they answered quickly? Are a lot of answers accepted, indicating that the person who asked them was satisfied? Are a lot of answers upvoted, indicating that some third party thought they were quality answers?

The entire purpose of the new standards was to help ensure that the second criteria would be met--that each question would receive good answers, that the answers would be helpful to the asker, and that the answers would get upvotes.

However, its the first criteria that we really need to work on.

  • Can we get more people here?
  • Can we create good quality questions that people care about?
  • How can we advertise this site?

These are the questions we need to consider. These are the questions that will either make or break this site (now that we have the new standards).

  • I strongly recommend reading Joel's blog post about this subject.
    – Richard
    Dec 20, 2011 at 15:17
  • Although I've accepted this, I really think we need to pick up the question your answers asks: How can we get more visitors here? Dec 21, 2011 at 17:22

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