EDIT: 12/06 - Unfortunately, after broader internal discussions, we've concluded that changing the name to "Wordpress Development" will solve some problems, but cause other new ones.
I've posted a new question laying out our concerns, and opening a new discussion designed to build consensus out exactly what we need to convey, so we can keep working toward a better solution that the current one.
EDIT: 11/18 - We've asked our in-house designer to change this site's theme to be WordPress Development. Not only did it win the voting here by a landslide, it's the best of the bunch from the reasoning I laid out below.
A few notes:
Our designer is very busy, so there's no timeline on this change. (One of the things he's doing is interviewing more designer candidates!)
The Stack Exchange philosophy has no problem (even encourages) screening content. But we are not interested in having sites that screens people. I, for one, am convinced that "Development" is inclusive enough when applied to this site, so it's not a huge concern at the moment.
If it's not obvious already, we are pretty conservative when it comes to established names. But we are more than willing to make changes when it makes sense.
The Community Team looked over this proposal today and we have a few things we'd like you to keep in mind as you brainstorm a name change:
We are very reluctant to change site names unless the new name is a clear winner over the existing name. (This has caused me some embarrassment. ;-) Frankly, we'd like to avoid name changes if at all possible and cetainly not go down the path of changing names regularly. So make this opportunity count.
We all agree that the "X Answers" site name formula is far less than ideal. The only reason we have used that in the past is to avoid brand confusion. This works both ways: we don't want the owner of the brand to feel like we are infringing on their legal rights, but we also don't want to confuse people into thinking that this site is somehow a part of the WordPress brand.
For that reason WordPress—Stack Exchange isn't viable. But when I think of this site, that's pretty much how I always phrase it in my mind. I never think of it as WordPress Answers. I doubt that whatever new name is decided upon will change that perception.
The names WordPress Developers and WordPress Professionals are problematic because they define the people who are welcome at the site rather than the topic. It's fine to design the site "for WordPress developers and administrators", but we don't want to be in the business of checking credentials at the door.
WordPress Development would be better, but it excludes Administration, which is part of the topic-space. (WordPress Development & Administration is too much a mouthful, by the way. We've changed our minds on allowing such names since the naming of Programming Puzzles & Code Golf and the like.) If there were a suggestions that encompassed both activities, it's more likely to be a clear win.
We talked about the unique scope issues of this site:
- It is more closely associated to Stack Overflow (rather than, say, Super User), so it has a strong developer culture. But it's not purely a developer site or it would be more at home as a tag on Stack Overflow. This is poorly understood even by Stack Overflow users.
- For the most part WordPress.com sites are off-topic to the surprise of many.
- The open source platform is used by a huge number of sites, but not many people are aware of it outside of the blog space. (I was surprised to know how many sites use the software.) Building and maintaining these sites turns out to be a much bigger topic than most people (even technical people) are aware of.
These issues mean that lots of people ask questions on the site without really understanding what's expected here. Changing the name might help, but it won't be a silver bullet. (No matter what, it's still going to be the WordPress Q&A site to most people who wind up here.) Addressing the issue of people asking off topic questions is a different topic.
We're fine with changing the name of the site, but none of the names proposed so far are enough of a win to warrant a name change. If you come up with a name that doesn't unnecessarily cut off participation or artificially limit the scope, we'll be happy to consider it.