I was searching for something and wound back up on WB Stack, but in French. My search terms found a bunch of mirror sites with similar formats but in different language.

Now I am suspecting I dreamed it because I can't find it again, or anything in my search history nor any mention of foreign language mirrors on the stack, except for something from 2016 saying "we are not doing that".

Do there exist foreign versions of WB?

  • 4
    $\begingroup$ We're not doing that, but there are a lot of scrapers out there that grab everything from Stack Exchange (or selected sites like SO) and put it on their own web sites. If they follow the attribution rules (including links) that's allowed per the CC-BY-SA license, but if they're representing the content as their own, that's a problem. See this FAQ entry on Meta.SE for more information. (I'm leaving this as a comment rather than an answer because you asked if there's a French site, not about scrapers in general.) $\endgroup$ Jun 19 '19 at 0:47

No, WorldBuilding.SE is only available in English.

There are a couple sites on the StackExchange network that target a specific linguistic audience, but those are dedicated sites, not just simple copy-paste-and-let-Google-translate versions and they are only StackOverflow versions.

If you click on the StackExchange logo in the upper right hand corner (the burger menu with the little speech-bubble-thingy at the bottom) you get a list of all sites on the network. If you scroll down you can see all sites that exist on the network. For example you will find the following sites:

Those are easily identified by looking at the links in the address bar of your browser when you visit them. They simply have two characters for their language before the ".stackoverflow.com" part:

- [Portuguese StackOverflow](https://pt.stackoverflow.com/)
- [Spanish StackOverflow](https://es.stackoverflow.com/)
- [Russian StackOverflow](https://ru.stackoverflow.com/)
- [Japanese StackOverflow](https://ja.stackoverflow.com/)

There are also many other language related sites on the network, such as Esperanto, German and even French, but as you can see on their respective frontpages they often have English titles because people are trying to learn the language.

WorldBuilding does not have any version in a different language.

What you saw is very likely a scraper - and there are lots of them. Some scammers copy the content from sites of the network, run it through Google Translator and then hope to make a quick buck with advertisement and probably some other scams once you accidentally click on said advertisement. I have also seen some that want you to pay to create an account, pay to see the accepted answer, ...

For more information you can look at the question A site (or scraper) is copying content from Stack Exchange. What should I do?

Basically what you can do if you found such a site is to click on the Contact link at the bottom of the page to contact the staff from StackExchange and tell them about it. They will most likely make sure that the site is taken down, but don't expect any big announcements.

This stuff happens so often, it's just business-as-usual for the people handling it and as far as I know they prefer to do this behind the scenes. They even have a category "Stack Exchange content is being reproduced without attribution" and adapt the form for you so that you just need to copy the link to the offending site and the corresponding site on the network and you are pretty much done.

You can legally copy stuff from StackExchange if you follow the attribution guidelines. Most of the time such simply Google-Translate-Scammers won't do that though. But you should still keep an eye out for it.

Once you contact the staff they will handle the case. The scraper will simply be gone after a couple days - and a couple more days later you will likely find another one.

If you are wondering why this hasn't happened to you before: WorldBuilding is not the biggest target. There's far more content on StackOverflow and some of the other big sites like ServerFault and Superuser. Less hassle for the scammer - just make one fake design and get massive amounts of problems and solutions that people will look for and may potentially be willing to pay for. WorldBuilding problems tend to not be the type that you could lock up with a message that says "Pay XYZ to access this solution" while answers telling you what to do with your compromised server / important deleted files may very well work for the unwary.


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