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Update This is now happening, please read the linked meta post on Sound Design SE. If you do not have an account on Sound Design SE, please make one now.

We have an interesting opportunity to migrate the Social Sound Design site to the Stack Exchange Network. Many of you are already familiar with the work of SSD — It's is a very high-quality Q&A for sound engineers and artists built on the Stack Exchange platform (back from when we offered Stack Exchange as a subscription service).

I've been chatting with Andrew (founder of SSD) and the moderators of AVP, and we've all become very excited about the prospects of joining forces (SSD with 3,600+ questions, AVP with 2,500+ questions). But I guess we're far enough along that it's pretty safe to announce:

We are going to merge Social Sound Design with AVP SE!

This is going to bring this site to a whole new level. SSD has an expert/professional user base reaching deep into the artistic disciplines of sound design, while Stack Exchange's technical reach is hard to beat. But we are both reaching out to the same audience, so our combined strength will be a great asset to this subject!

But how does this help video?

One of our concerns was that all the new audio content would overwhelm the video community. Video is about 45% of this site; after the merge, that would fall to about 20%. But we've come up with a solution that we hope will ultimately benefit both parties.

Video will have its own dedicated site.

Technically we're actually migrating AVP audio to the combined site, so this presents a unique opportunity for the video community to take over so we can finally focus on creating a site dedicated to video professionals and experts! Yes, there are a few isolated audio-video crossover questions, but it shouldn't be hard to work them out during the move.

I realize this leaves the video site somewhat smaller (albeit, more focused on their subject); but with a renewed focus, I think we have a much better chance of attracting the audience we need. If the community has trouble taking off, we're here to offer whatever assistance you need.

So how is this going to work?

Step 1: Don't panic — We're going to start by moving SSD over to the network software as "Sound Design." SSD will be our new neighbors for awhile while we work through some of the technical issues and the SSD community gets acclimated to their new home. This will provide a gentle introduction; be sure to bake a pie and greet the new neighbors.

After a short cleanup, we'll start hashing out the migration issues (content, tags, cleanup, etc). SSD is already well attuned to the Stack Exchange way of doing things, so there shouldn't be any radical changes in scope or how things are done. We'll use the audio-specific tags to automate a lot of the heavy moving; but after that, we'll simply use the regular migration tools so the community can carefully and methodically manage the remaining content however you see fit. And all along, we'll be working behind the scenes to make sure nothing gets lost and we don't break anything on the Internet.

Once the activity starts to wane, we'll circle back and rebrand the Video Production site. The moderators are somewhat audio-centric, so we'll be keeping the AVP and SSD mods on audio and appointing new moderators for video.

We recently completed a successful migration of Math Overflow (another SE 1.0 site), so we're already somewhat familiar with the technical issues, but we'll do everything we can to make the move as seamless as possible.

Stay tuned; we'll keep the updates coming. Enjoy!

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    Interesting - and likely to kick start with new blood coming in! – Dr Mayhem Aug 28 '13 at 18:13
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    Yay! I think this will be a very positive move. – Warrior Bob Aug 28 '13 at 18:19
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    I see sound.se is up and running! That's great! Just curious if there is anything we ought to be doing in the meantime to help them along... before merging. – JoshP Dec 16 '13 at 13:53
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I'm a bit worried about this in terms of video. Video is more tightly linked to audio than the inverse, but good video requires good sound and good lighting. I think the sound design merge sounds good, but I'm less confident that breaking out Video from the new merge will do anything but kill the Video site further.

It breaks up the community removing audio resources that are key to video and also breaks up the ability to ask more general production related questions that are key to live events. None of this stuff exists in a vacuum, particularly for live production. Lighting, video and audio all have to work together and cross over as the cross over questions we have had show.

I think it would be best for video to remain attached to the site and even expand the scope to include lighting unless SSD has some objection to this. Alternately, a split along the lines of recording vs live might make sense, though I'm still not sure that a split is necessary along those lines either since there is a lot of cross over there as well. I just notice that SSD appears extremely recording oriented and not very live oriented at all.

  • I don't disagree with your concerns, but the problem with tacking on video is in the presentation/labeling. If you look at SSD, anything we create called "audio-video <anything>" simply will not appear to be a site for that industry (which is why SSD wasn't integrated here long ago). True, video editing does not typically exist in isolation of audio, but I've participated in plenty of NLE/NLVE forums that do just fine with their audio questions as it pertains to video production. But I don't think we can sustain video in an audio-centric site when it's just tacked on for good measure. – Robert Cartaino Aug 30 '13 at 16:41
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    @RobertCartaino - yeah, I can understand that concern too, which is why I also mentioned that a recording vs live production split might work. Sound design is very different from live audio, far more so than video production is different in my view. The trick is that there is more to video than editing, it's an entire production field where as audio is a much smaller field that just happens to be very deep in and of itself. We'd also orphan some concepts like 3d animation that are currently covered. – AJ Henderson Aug 30 '13 at 17:34
  • I guess maybe my bigger concern is that the video site should be more broad than just video. – AJ Henderson Aug 30 '13 at 17:38
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    I think you are right about being more than video editing. A video-centric community will be able to cover a much broader range of the production field than they were able when the other 50-60% of the site didn't care. – Robert Cartaino Aug 30 '13 at 19:22
  • Just to provide an update, as I've thought about it more, I'm onboard with recording being it's own thing, I just have trouble coming up with a term that fits a video site other than Audio-Video Production or Audio-Visual Production. Fundamentally Video isn't a thing by itself in the way Audio is, but I don't think it will hurt the Audio-Video/Audio-Visual community if Recording and Sound Design become it's own thing, I just can't think of any titles for the "new" site that work other than the current naming. – AJ Henderson Sep 4 '13 at 18:59
  • interesting but it would be helpful to name the actual se sites by full names at least once before jumping into all the abbrevs for those not fully conversant with all the "insider" stuff – vzn Mar 5 '14 at 4:18

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