Amongst the moderators we've recently been discussing starting a blog for MathOverflow. The immediate goal is to have a good place to describe the current 'institutional setup' of MathOverflow (e.g. that we have a legal entity representing MathOverflow, that we have a grant from Sloan, that we're applying for non-profit status so that is possible in future to handle grants or donations properly, that we need to reimburse Anton for some things, etc, etc). We'd like to explain all of this in part for the same of transparency and public review, and equally importantly for the sake of recording institutional knowledge that otherwise might vanish as moderators move on.
We don't think meta is a suitable forum for this --- partly because it's terrible for discussions, and partly because many of these topics involve MathOverflow's identity separately from Stack Exchange.
I'm interested in input on two questions ---
Would people be interested in widening the scope of such a blog to also include posts by users about questions that have come up on MathOverflow?
A number of other SE sites have active (and I think often quite good) blogs. I imagine here that posts would not be about a single question or answer, but perhaps collect together and summarize discussion of a broader topic. If this is a reasonable plan, we might want to look for examples of blog posts elsewhere that would have been reasonable candidates for posting on a MathOverflow blog, just to be sure that such a blog is viable.
Obviously such a blog would need to be closely moderated, but it might still be nice to provide a forum for selected MathOverflow users to write discursive posts, without having to start their own blog.
(Even if the answer to this first question is 'no', we still want a blog to handle the institutional issues.)
Where should such a blog be hosted?
The options are essentially
- Set it up at MathOverflow.blogoverflow.com, alongside all the other SE blogs.
- Create our own, e.g, on WordPress.com or someone's private hosting.
I think hosting alongside the other SE blogs is a great idea -- it's simple, they look nice, and someone does the hard work. On the other hand, especially as part of the point of this blog is to discuss issue about MathOverflow's identity separate from SE, it might be worth 'asserting independence' by hosting the blog ourselves. Another problem is that by default the blogs at blogoverflow have a footer stating "Stack Exchange © 2014 Entries (RSS) and Comments (RSS). CC-Wiki". Probably this could be modified.