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I asked this question yesterday:

Nolan's Dark Knight: Why would Dent's convictions be overturned?

It got moved to Movies and TV by the evening. Now, I've been using mobile exclusively for the past 48 hours, so I can't see close votes, but I'm just curious as to how the decision is made to move such questions. I don't have a problem with it being moved if that's the general approach, but the sci-fi site is filled with recent questions about Days of Future Past, Sherlock, Dr Who, the Silver Surfer cartoon, etc.

So to distill my question to its essence:

What makes a question about a movie or television program on-topic for the sci-fi site?

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  • I thought we didn’t have migration paths to beta sites? Or have I missed something?
    – alexwlchan
    Jun 8 '14 at 16:50
  • I've no idea. But it was migrated sure enough. Jun 8 '14 at 16:51
  • 6
    No migration paths means that it was migrated by a mod, and not by a critical mass of Closed as Off Topic votes that pushed it to M&TV. The lack of migration paths don't prevent migration, only auto-migration. Jun 8 '14 at 16:57
  • 4
    @alexwlchan Movies&TV.SE is in the queue to be graduated. They're no longer a normal beta, they'll be graduated soon-ish.
    – user1027
    Jun 8 '14 at 17:09
  • @Keen Ah, that makes sense. Thanks for clarifying.
    – alexwlchan
    Jun 8 '14 at 17:09
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    So I admit not to having seen these films, but I was under the impression that the Dark Knight trilogy wasn't sci-fi/fantasy, it was an action/thriller series of movies... (not that there isn't overlap, but watching the trailer again, it's like - other than the names and facepaint, what marks it as something other than a non-sci-fi gritty/realistic reimagining into an action movie?) (And I know the larger DC universe definitely belongs here, but I'm talking about these films specifically...)
    – Izkata
    Jun 10 '14 at 2:26
  • @Izkata I could argue that a lot of the tech, or even the concept of a man dressing up as a bat and fighting crime puts it in scifi or fantasy, but I think the far more important link is its relation to the larger Batman medium. But even that is not apparently already accepted by the community here—there are other questions (including one I answered recently that was very closely related) about this very movie that are not disputed. Jun 10 '14 at 10:26
  • @Izkata Exactly, those aren't SciFi/Fantasy movies the slightest. While the presented tech might ocasionally scratch the edge of plausibility, the movies themselves, their stories and presentation are far from that genre.
    – TARS
    Dec 23 '14 at 10:53
  • @SkyCaptain, see my comment right before yours. While I wouldn't say that the question is suitable only on this particular SE site, there is first-hand context (other questions about these movies) for this question here, and second-hand context, as well (questions about Batman the comic character). It is not a leap for someone to expect to have a question about a Batman answered in a place where a great deal of other questions about Batman are answered without opposition. Jan 6 '15 at 20:32
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It should not have been migrated without approval from the OP.

We have plenty of on topic questions that aren't asking for, or answered by, details specific to fantastic elements.

I answered a Game of Thrones question about whether archery was under represented. My answer was based exclusively on the real world historical role of archery in medieval times. Should it have been migrated because it didn't deal with fantasy elements? No, and neither should this.

We have plenty of examples of on topic questions that don't deal specifically with fantastic elements, and it has never been an issue before.

I think this is a bad, and unnecessary, precedent.

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  • 3
    So how we go about unmigrating it? Jun 9 '14 at 17:23
  • 2
    I agree. It was perfectly answerable (in-universe) and seemed well within the scope of scifi/fantasy.
    – Valorum
    Jun 9 '14 at 19:33
  • I flagged the question asking to have it migrated back here, referencing this meta.
    – Beofett
    Jun 11 '14 at 15:58
  • The response I got to my flag was that it was on topic for movies.se, and remigrating would delete the answer.
    – Beofett
    Jun 12 '14 at 0:51
  • I did my best to 'unmigrate' it.
    – user1027
    Jun 12 '14 at 2:02
  • @Keen I saw, and I appreciate you trying. Thanks!
    – Beofett
    Jun 12 '14 at 12:04
  • Can someone try to unmigrate my question, which appears to have been improperly migrated according to this? Should I ask a separate meta question?
    – ike
    Jun 12 '14 at 19:30
  • @ike according to this meta discussion, Twins in general isn't really considered on-topic.
    – Beofett
    Jun 12 '14 at 19:32
  • Ah, I hadn't seen that discussion.
    – ike
    Jun 12 '14 at 19:37
  • @Richard Why did you VTC it as off-topic then?
    – user1027
    Jun 12 '14 at 23:20
  • @Keen - Because on first reading the question seemed to be about the US legal system.
    – Valorum
    Jun 13 '14 at 6:00
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The reason, I would presume is due to the fact that the sci-fi setting holds no bearing on the issues addressed in the question, nor in the answer. You could have asked a similar question from a non SF setting and had the same response.

That being said, I don't know of any hard-and-fast rules for this sort of migration.

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  • But if questions about comic books, movies based on comic books, and television shows based on comic books are otherwise considered in scope for the Sci-fi/Fantasy SE site, then why would this one be a special case? Jun 8 '14 at 16:45
  • @BrianWarshaw I migrated it, for the reasons Pureferret outlined. It was essentially a legal question inside the framework of a film. I expect it to get a better reception (and answers) over on Movies&TV.SE.
    – user1027
    Jun 8 '14 at 17:00
  • I understand your decision, although in this case I think the question is one that other fans of the film might ask, because it is relevant to the film, and the presence of some film related questions here but not others inhibits the site's ability to serve as a reliable resource. Maybe the answer is ultimately all movie and tv stuff is over there instead of here. Thanks for explaining! Jun 8 '14 at 17:03
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    @BrianWarshaw the fact it was a movie based on a sci-fi comic book has no more bearing than if it was just a movie, or from a novel or anything else. The mediums you mentioned are only on topic if they're also SF related.
    – AncientSwordRage Mod
    Jun 8 '14 at 17:04
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    @Keen - I managed to answer the question from a purely in-universe perspective. On examination, it turned out not to be a legal question after all...
    – Valorum
    Jun 8 '14 at 17:04
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    @BrianWarshaw I may be new here, but questions can overlap the scope of multiple SE's, but be better suited in one or the other based on the meat of the question, which is always subjective obviously, but that's how it works over multiple SEs.
    – user16696
    Jun 10 '14 at 4:04
  • @Richard that question can still have a different, real world answer. While a DA becoming a known killer isn't per-say prosecutorial misconduct, every single defense lawyer who ever lost a case to Dent would appeal on those grounds. If Dent had said something along the lines of "I don't care if he's guilty or innocent, he deserves to die" it would definitely open the flood gates on prejudicial actions.
    – user16696
    Jun 10 '14 at 4:26
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    @cde Having a real world answer has never been an obstacle for something being on topic here, nor should it. Additionally, when a question is valid and on topic for multiple SE sites, it is generally up to the OP which site the question belongs on. At least, that has long been our agreement with movies&TV.se, anime.se, etc..
    – Beofett
    Jun 10 '14 at 12:58
  • "the sci-fi setting holds no bearing on the issues addressed in the question" - Well, there isn't even a sci-fi setting to begin with anyway.
    – TARS
    Dec 23 '14 at 10:57

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