During a discussion on EL&U about a link to an ELL question that someone added in a comment, Laurel had an idea to show links on both sites if someone linked a related question on the other site:

As long as these comments are done politely (as this one was), I think it's helpful to link to relevant questions on other sites. In fact, I think it should be taken a step further, with "association banners" like some questions on SO have to Ru.SO questions. (Due to the language difference, these banners are only visible to people with certain browser settings. I'm not sure if there are any plans to bring this feature to the rest of the network unfortunately.) – Laurel Mar 30 at 14:52

It does seem like a good idea, and we found an existing feature request on Meta that had been declined that we are trying to resurrect: Display other SE site links in the linked questions sidebar. Part of the reason the request was declined according to Jon Ericson's answer is that it is more work than the value it seems to add:

I suggested this feature to the dev team. It turns out the linkback feature makes it difficult to implement and expensive to put in operation. (snip) So while we think it's an interesting feature, it's not one we will be investing in anytime soon.

aparente001 has posted on the EL&U meta asking for community support to get this feature reviewed again (since it has been several years since it was declined). I'm asking for the ELL community's help as well. It's not unusual that there is a question on EL&U that discusses the same topic as a question on ELL but from a different perspective. It would be nice if the question on EL&U linked back to the ELL question so that someone who came across the EL&U question, but was looking for an explanation from a learner's perspective could more easily find the ELL question.

If you think that feature might be a good idea, please visit the Display other SE site links in the linked questions sidebar and support the favorable answer (or add your own answer proposing what you think might be a good solution).

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    I think this is an excellent idea, and not just for ELU/ELL. I've chimed in on the linked Meta.SE question, as you suggested. Apr 12, 2018 at 15:20

1 Answer 1


I have an idea how this could work. Currently there are two sidebars that show related questions: "Linked" and "Related". If there was a third, it could contain links to questions on another site (or a few sites). You'd see something like this on each site:

ELU showing ELL Linked Questions

This sidebar would be limited to one or two sites where the content overlaps heavily. I don't think it would be helpful to have links from all of Stack Exchange since a lot of those links will be to comments along the lines of "edit your answer because according to [link] the grammar is wrong".

For the record (again) the comment of mine you're quoting wasn't about this feature at all. What I was referring to is an actual banner that shows up underneath the question that announces that a duplicate exists on another site:

Translation: This question has answers on Stack Overflow in Russian: Unresolved external character reference (possible causes)”

The above is what Russian speakers (meaning that Russian is an Accept-Language) will see when they visit that particular question (i.e the feature already exists, connecting English Stack Overflow to Russian Stack Overflow).

If you know Russian or Google Translate, you can read more about this in the [ассоциация-вопросов] tag on the Russian site's meta.

  • I like your suggestion a lot. I know that there are actually a few different ideas for relating questions across sites. I’m hoping that we can get the SE devs to think about the capability and maybe find a solution that would meet our needs and not cause performance issues on their end. I didn’t mean to give the impression this was about one particular implementation.
    – ColleenV
    Apr 13, 2018 at 20:22
  • I think you should post this as an answer on the meta site. It would be easier for users of both Eng sites to upvote your suggestion. Please do post.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Apr 15, 2018 at 14:01

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