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I've come to the realization that my favorite site names on SE are the ones that are a little bit "clever" in their naming. Although many of the sites recently out of beta have more prosaic descriptive names (e.g. Gaming, Programmers, Mathematics), I'm partial to names like StackOverflow, SuperUser, ServerFault, etc. Names that have a charming insider appeal to aficionados of their respective fields.

Has any thought been given to choosing such a name for the Travel site?

For example, thinking out loud here...

Transit Visa

Destination: Anywhere

Departure Lounge

etc.

Not that I really dislike "Travel" in any way. I just find names of the above sort a bit more "huggable".

For example, I'd wear a t-shirt that said StackOverflow. But I wouldn't wear one that said Travel.StackExchange.Com.

  • I thought that the SE overlords were tired of the puns, and decided to keep the names boring. – Andrew Grimm Jan 31 '12 at 7:48
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I wouldn't keep my fingers crossed -- at least for the foreseeable future. The Stack Exchange team decided to put all new Area 51 sites under the Stack Exchange umbrella, and very few have their own URL (AskUbuntu comes to mind, but it has special support from Canonical).

See these related blog posts:

In short, the rationale is that the unique names would diminish the value of the Stack Exchange brand, and won't provide a clue that the site is related to the SE network and is not just generic forum.

Personally, I am inclined to agree with Joel's argument against picking a unique name for the site. Perhaps, if a site become really, really big (think SO size), and a great name comes along, and the domain name is somehow available, then the SE team could be convinced to reconsider. Until then, I don't think this will change.

As Robert says, the name doesn't really matter. It's the community that is important. So instead of spending time and effort to think of clever domain names, we could continue building a great community for seasoned and seasonal travellers alike.

Update: If we come up with a great name, I think we can persuade the SE overlords to incorporate it in the site branding when the site graduates (similar to Cooking-SE), but that probably won't happen for the domain name.

  • Of course, there's nothing stopping someone creating a URL and pointing to it, is there? ;) – Mark Mayo Supports Monica Dec 19 '11 at 21:11
  • @MarkMayo: Absolutely, but without site support and SEO, it's almost useless. – mindcorrosive Dec 19 '11 at 21:12
  • Hmm...after reading those posts I see their side of the argument. But, I wonder if they're missing a chicken-egg problem there. Yes, the community matters most, but people bond more tightly to communities that have a strong sense of identity. The StackExchange reputation for excellence is a chicken that grew from the egg of StackOverflow. If the original site had been ProgrammerQandA.geocities.com would as many people have bonded to it? Anyway, point taken: this is a question that the meta-community of SE has already resolved so I'll focus on giving good answers and suggesting good taglines. – Jonathan Van Matre Dec 19 '11 at 21:13
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    @JonathanVM: I think you are missing the point -- the community grows regardless of how the site is named. Even the greatest domain name won't be able to keep people there if there's nothing of interest. Our identity is not to Travel-SE, but the majority of the users, myself included, participate in other SE sites, so I identify myself with SE, not with a particular sub-site. – mindcorrosive Dec 19 '11 at 21:16
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    No I think he has another valid point - there are certainly people (I used to be) who were solely on Stackoverflow, and in that community. I was vaguely aware of this 'Stackexchange' overlord site, but wasn't interested in the time with pursuing it. – Mark Mayo Supports Monica Dec 19 '11 at 21:21
  • mmm, but cooking is Seasoned Advice even though it's cooking.stackexchange.com and diy is Home Improvement even though it's diy.stackexchange.com – Kate Gregory Dec 19 '11 at 21:22
  • @Kate: diy.stackexchange.com is much shorter than home-improvement.stackexchange.com.. and Cooking-SE was one of the sites that was just supposed to get their own domain AFAIR, and the site themeing was already done at that point, and they decided to keep the name (which is great, btw) – mindcorrosive Dec 19 '11 at 21:24
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    I can't get my non nerd friends to use our site because the "stack exchange" in the name makes it sound to them like it's a technical site for computer geeks. Seriously. I have not succeeded in getting a single traveller to start using it yet and one Japanese friend just said "Sounds too nerd!" - A more huggable name and URL would be good medicine for this IMHO. – hippietrail Dec 20 '11 at 7:45

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