We semi-recently decided that chains of duplicates are bad, and we want to make "duplicate hubs" instead of chains. I assume this applies to both main and meta, because there's no obvious reason to treat them differently, and the top-voted answer points to an example from MSE, the meta to our meta.

Currently, we have this chain of duplicates:

  1. Are all utopias and dystopias on-topic?
  2. How much dystopia is needed to be on-topic?
  3. Are works that aren't SF per se, but have occasional SFnal elements on-topic? (e.g. spy movies)

(1) is a dupe of (2), which is a dupe of (3). (3) contains no mention whatsoever of utopias and dystopias, in either the question or the answers, and (2) has no answers at all. We can't use (2) as a hub without any answers, and making (1) a dupe of (3) seems a bit... wrong. (1) is all about whether we can treat 'topias as "SF per se" in the first place, and has nothing to do with "occasional elements." How should this problem be resolved (leave as chain, make (1) the hub for (2), do something else)?

  • 3
    To be honest sometimes dupe chains make sense, as in this case. 2 is answered on 3 but the closer target for 1 is 2. Why close to 3 when logically it makes more sense to close to 2?
    – TheLethalCarrot Mod
    Aug 17, 2019 at 8:53
  • 1
    @TheLethalCarrot: I linked to an entire thread explaining why. If we wanted to have an "in some cases yes, in some cases no" policy, we should have said so in the linked meta post. But we didn't.
    – Kevin
    Aug 17, 2019 at 16:19

1 Answer 1


I've edited the list of dupe targets for Are all utopias and dystopias on-topic? to include your #3 as well as #2.

  • I think it makes sense to include #2 in the list, since it may be useful to see that dystopia specifically has been asked about before and decided to be a dupe, as well as the more general discussion. (To put it another way, #2 is more clearly a dupe target than #3.)

  • One way in which meta may behave differently from main is that policy discussion can be had, in both comments and answers, and in some cases it's interesting to see that the community voted strongly for something at a particular time. If, for example, the question #2 had a stronger consensus for "dystopia is on-topic" than the general consensus found at #3, then #2 would've made more sense as a dupe target than #3. However, in reality, How much dystopia is needed to be on-topic? has no answers and no useful discussion in comments, so it's not very useful as a dupe target.

  • To resolve the issue that neither #2 not #3 directly "answer" #1, I've added Would non-horror Speculative Fiction be on-topic for this site? as another dupe target, since this is the best source I could find for the policy that our scope is "speculative fiction" as well as "science fiction" plus "fantasy".

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