Name suggestions for Ubuntu 12.04?

About the above linked question/post. I've seen several other name suggestions threads in the history of the AskUbuntu system, however considering that this is a (seemingly) VERY offtopic question that doesn't really ASK a question (but asks for suggestions, which can lead to people getting medals for participation in offtopic-ness, as well as getting unwarranted rep from similar reasons), are these questions really acceptable?

Note that I flagged the question initially, but then considered my action of doing that, and contacted a moderator because I was highly unsure of my action initially.

Community opinions?

  • Please note, that I believe that should we come to a consensus on this issue, moderation policies will have to reflect the decision in some way, if not be changed to include the on-sight closure or deletion of the topic as "Doesn't belong here". Although this is my opinion, it is my belief that a consensus on this issue may require the moderators to agree with this decision, and to adapt accordingly.
    – Thomas Ward Mod
    Commented Mar 17, 2011 at 8:36
  • See also: What will you change in ubuntu if you ownned canonical?
    – 8128
    Commented Mar 18, 2011 at 10:28

3 Answers 3


I personally feel that these are the exact kind of "questions" that our engine is NOT suited for.

It is your community, but I would strongly advise you to not allow these pure poll / entertainment questions to take root ... they lead to a garden full of weeds :(

  • 1
    +1 Especially because in the Ubuntu community we have other places for these "questions" - namely the Ubuntu Forums
    – 8128
    Commented Mar 18, 2011 at 10:27
  • 1
    +2 The Ubuntu Forums site is much more appropriate for those kinds of questions, and as fluteflute says, there's more than one locale where these questions are acceptable, with none of those locales being here.
    – Thomas Ward Mod
    Commented Mar 18, 2011 at 13:39

The general view in the community (I think) is that Ask Ubuntu isn't the right place for such questions.

Unlike other Stack Exchange sites we have the Ubuntu Forums which are far better suited to questions like this one.

See also Fun-friend-friday! and Why was question 4389 closed? Note that those are from a little while ago, and from the early days of the site, so things do always change.

(Also, on this specific question: the naming suggestions thing has already been done to death)

  • My thoughts exactly, that's why I initially flagged the post.
    – Thomas Ward Mod
    Commented Mar 17, 2011 at 8:20
  • @EvilPhoenix and why it was closed shortly after your flags :) Commented Mar 17, 2011 at 18:03
  • Indeed, i noticed that when @Stefano pinged me in the chat and woke me :P But now the question becomes one of how future moderation should deal with this, no? Should the type of question that's addressed by this discussion be included in the "Close on sight" list, and that be it? (if you can tell, i'm pushing for this thread to be a new precedent for moderating :P)
    – Thomas Ward Mod
    Commented Mar 17, 2011 at 18:05
  • Why not close askubuntu.com/questions/4459/name-suggestions-for-ubuntu-11-10 then? People seemed to have a lot of fun with that.
    – Kees Cook
    Commented Mar 17, 2011 at 23:15

When moderating, I do tolerate some open, subjective and fun threads. I'll admit right now, it's totally subjective. I'm even guilty of starting a few.

For me it all depends on how much value or how much fun a thread really holds.

A name suggestion thread might get a few giggles but you've probably got more chance in suggesting which underwear Mark wears tomorrow (coming to an AskUbuntu question near you) than successfully naming the next iteration of Ubuntu. In that vein, I don't see much value in naming threads because they never achieve anything.

On the surface there might be some arguments for this style of question on the system: it allows voting in a clear and simple way. This would hypothetically allow the best answers to float to the top. But this isn't the case. Because there's so much time before another release these new answers don't get nearly as much love as the old ones. If the system supported time-based polls, this might work but it doesn't.

But as I say, it's not a science. What gets closed could very depend on which side of the bed I fell out of before clawing my way through a cup of coffee and onto AU.

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