Re the query Transportation of a Heart in a Survival Setting, and the fiasco surrounding it, I am curious to know how this happened.

  • So you're aware: The underlying premise of Worldbuilding is to field queries relating to the invention and construction of fictional worlds and settings: such as fantasy, sci-fi, speculative fiction and the like. Here is a meta question dealing with what the group is about.

Although I am not the query's OP, I am a healthcare professional (retired OR nurse) with some familiarity with the intraoperative phases of organ transplantation, I'm at least aware of the varying windows within which certain organs and tissues must be transplanted before becoming non-viable and the related work and planning of various transplant consortia. I'd like to understand something about your forum's dynamics: why is this question, one of basic medical contingency planning, broadly falling under your "clinical guidelines" category, come to be viewed here as "speculative" and thus worthy of being dumped into another SE forum. And given your answer, if "speculation" isn't the issue, what is? Note: I understand that MedSci has a policy of requiring some kind of prior research, which makes sense in this forum. That seems to be a non sequitur as far as migration is concerned.

In WB, upon rejection of your migration, we did receive a notice from one of your Mods: My apologies for migrating it here. I thought it was a better fit, but it's definitely off topic on MedSci even if it seems to have a medical slant. I understood World Building to be more tolerant of speculative questions. While it's true WB deals in "speculative questions" as a matter of course, the very nature of fictional worlds being what it is, this particular question isn't the kind of speculation we deal with. This particular question is more one of application of established medical guidelines.

Just to clarify: I'm nòt the OP of the migrated question. I'm one of the folks over on WB who's wondering why it is even a viable option for a MedSci moderator to dump your unwanted queries in our forum. Please use the red bin in your own forum! We're trying to combat the perception that WB is a garbage pit for all the science forums here; and your conclusion to the effect that "hey, over on WB, it got upvotes and answers!" is not a helpful attitude. Just because you see that kind of question doesn't mean that question should be there or that it's a good fit.

So the question essentially boils down to: why is this question off-topic in Medical Sciences such that dumping it on the Worldbuilding forum becomes a viable option or matter of question policy?

  • Adding to my comments replying to yours, to me, "it might assume some really miraculous science" was the main cue that this was a WorldBuilding question looking for a hard sci-fi speculative answer. Instead, the WorldBuilding folks provided 2 realistic answers that basically amount to "this has no basis in medicine and you haven't even made an effort to learn about this topic" and rejected it. I have no problem with that result, but there really isn't anything MedSci about this question. If they wanted to make it "how are organs preserved" that would be better than miracle science. May 12 '20 at 22:13

It wasn't because it was speculative. The question lacked prior research, which is a requirement for all questions on MedSci. So my two best options were to close the question or migrate it to WB. Migrating was the friendlier option for the OP since it would keep their question alive. I was surprised that WB rejected it, especially since it was upvoted and already had two answers. I've seen questions like that on WB many times. Please don't blame me for inconsistent moderation on another site.

Anyway, there's a simple remedy. All the OP needs to do is edit the question (on MedSci) and add at least one supporting reference. For example, what are the time limits on a heart and how are they transported normally?

  • @elemtilas Some of this has been talked to death here: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/285467/… I don't think there are great conclusions to come from there, other than to avoid migrating crap, and to be wary about migrating stuff that's accumulated history on the source site. Several people (at least one commenter, one mod, and myself) thought it belonged better on Worldbuilding because it sounded like OP was looking for some fancy non-science science to help them out: speculation, rather than medical science. May 12 '20 at 21:40
  • ...migrating solves the problem of users cross-posting and the mess that involves questions open in various places. I agreed with Carey's choice to migrate, I also have no problem with folks on Worldbuilding choosing to close it, though I'm pretty sure I've seen similar stuff accepted there readily. I don't think migration of a question without history is that big of a deal, any more than suggesting a user repost it. It's often the cleanest way to handle it. Sometimes mods check with target site mods about migration but that's a bit of a pain, and the target community can typically handle it. May 12 '20 at 21:42
  • (btw Carey the poster here was not the OP of the question but rather someone from worldbuilding upset that it moved there) May 12 '20 at 21:44
  • @BryanKrause Oops, thanks for the heads up.
    – Carey Gregory Mod
    May 12 '20 at 22:05
  • @elemtilas I didn't "dump" an unwanted question on WB and I'm rather taken aback by your tone. (A public apology wasn't enough?) It wasn't a bad question; it merely lacked one strict requirement we have that WB doesn't. Adding a comment telling the OP to fix the question is what I do in most cases, but in this case my perception was it would be welcome on WB. I'm apparently not alone in that perception. But rest assured it won't happen again.
    – Carey Gregory Mod
    May 12 '20 at 22:14
  • Fair enough that you agree with Carey's decision. But please don't migrate off topic questions again. In my view, it's not really a matter of "agreement", it's a matter of what's on topic for the community you're dumping on and a little bit of intercommunity collegiality. If we got a question that seemed to be on topic for your forum, we wouldn't dump it on you. Most likely we'd close it and invite the OP to ask elsewhere. I'm not a Mod, but if I were, I'd make the effort to ask peer to peer or else on Meta if migration were feasible.
    – elemtilas
    May 12 '20 at 23:33
  • @elemtilas Maybe it's my own bias because I know organs are transported as flesh on ice, but I indeed read OP's question as they were interested in writing a hard sci-fi story and developing a fanciful way they might transport this organ in that world. There are also more 'real medical' questions there looking to check facts for stories like worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/questions/170916/… and worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/questions/157934/… May 12 '20 at 23:40
  • @elemtilas "And it seems that this is a sort of unwritten policy of your forum that WB is where you toss questions that you don't like in your own group." -- WTF? That's an utterly baseless accusation. I believe this is the first time I've migrated anything to WB and I've done the majority of the moderation here for the last year or so. We have no such policy, written or otherwise. One question does not a policy make. Your tone continues to be confrontational and hostile. I request that you tone it down.
    – Carey Gregory Mod
    May 12 '20 at 23:49
  • @CareyGregory --- Um... hello? It's in the answer you just gave me! my options were to close the question or migrate it to WB. You wrote that; I didn't make it up! If you hold that, as a MedSci ♦ moderator, your only viable options are to close or dump, then I'd say that's pretty clearly an unwritten policy of your forum!
    – elemtilas
    May 12 '20 at 23:54
  • @elemtilas I'm not altering a policy because no such policy exists, and you really need to stop making that accusation unless you're armed with evidence to support it. You completely misinterpreted my words in a decidedly biased fashion. I didn't say those were my only options. So pardon me for not being more clear, but for you to jump to the conclusion that we have some sort of policy of dumping on WB is beyond absurd. If you're going to make that accusation, you need to compile a list of the questions that have been migrated from MS to WB. Until you have that, you need to stop this.
    – Carey Gregory Mod
    May 12 '20 at 23:59
  • 1
    @elemtilas Huh? "my options were to close the question or migrate it" is always the choice when migration is involved. Questions that should be left open should not be migrated, so when a topic should be closed on a site there's a second option to not merely close it but migrate it in the process. And you seem to think this question was about "medical policy" but it's not. It wasn't asking about contingencies (which almost certainly do not exist in this context) but about fantasy. May 12 '20 at 23:59
  • @BryanKrause -- That's rather odd! Why should migration to Worldbuilding always be the choice? Migration is supposed to occur when the question is actually on topic for the target group. If you're not sure, then find out before you migrate! If you disagree that the question is about medical policy, fair enough! It's off topic for MedSci! Then, as I see it, your only viable option becomes closure if it's off-topic for MedSci.
    – elemtilas
    May 13 '20 at 2:43
  • Sorry but it's not about "fantasy" Just replace "stuck on a snowy mountain" with "stuck on an icy suburban highway between JFK and NYC" and it's the same question. Either way, it's off topic for Worldbuilding; and it's really not my concern whether or not it's off topic for MedSci or not; that's up to you guys! That brings us back to the original issue: we help folks build fantasy worlds; we're not here to play dumping for your forum. Okay, enough said. Thank you also for your time.
    – elemtilas
    May 13 '20 at 2:45
  • @CareyGregory -- I'm not "accusing" you of anything. I am simply stating a fact consistent with your original reply. Nor have I any intention of "blaming" you for anything anywhere else. Again, if you see bias, fair enough! Just keep in mind that you supplied the evidence to back it up. As for "jumping to conclusions", well, the facts speak for themselves on that account. As for your demand for extra evidence, no, I don't need to supply that, as the evidence speaks for itself. I do thank you for trying to explain, however I think we've all said plenty enough!
    – elemtilas
    May 13 '20 at 2:52
  • @elemtilas If it's off topic here, the next question is: could it be on topic somewhere else? That somewhere else might be Biology, Chemistry, CrossValidated, Worldbuilding, etc. This one looked like it fits with similar accepted questions at Worldbuilding. It wasn't accepted there by 3 close voters and 1 mod even while it got 2 upvotes and 2 answers and that's fine - didn't take any more effort than the effort to ask between mods would have. If you're looking for a target of blatant migration abuse you won't find it in this case. May 13 '20 at 3:08

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