Recently, I wrote a small package to provide a formula interface (and some other bits) to the glmnet R package. This came about after I posted on StackOverflow asking whether there was an existing package that provided the functionality I was looking for. Nobody answered, so I assumed the answer was negative. After writing the package, I then answered my own question and provided a download link.

It's now occurred to me that this might also be on-topic on CV; and there might be an audience of people working with glmnet who'd find it useful but missed the post on SO. Would it be acceptable to (essentially) repost the question and answer here?

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    $\begingroup$ In respect of the downvote (which wasn't mine) -- just a reminder that in meta votes, can often be used to express disagreement with whatever is bring proposed, without necessarily being a reflection on the quality of the question; that may be the case here. $\endgroup$
    – Glen_b
    May 15, 2015 at 3:10
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    $\begingroup$ Mention your authorship of the package on your user profile. $\endgroup$ May 15, 2015 at 15:12

2 Answers 2


I see your valuable contributions quite regularly here; thanks for those.

Thanks for asking first, as well.

The SE network has a fairly clear policy on self-promotion, which you should look at.


Limits for self-promotion in answers

What signifies "Good" self promotion? (or: Self Promotion Part Infinity)

For more than you'd care to read: https://meta.stackexchange.com/search?q=self+promotion

Where there's a question to which 'my software solves that problem' would be an answer or part of an answer, you're allowed to mention software you made or helped make or are otherwise associated with -- as long as you clearly identify your association each time (saying 'my package ...' is usually sufficient). [However, as gung notes, the sort of question to which that would be a complete answer is fairly likely to be off topic here. On the other hand, there can be answers to which some mention of software would fit quite well.]

What does tend to be frowned on is anything that looks like an attempt to advertise*. For commercial products there are ads, and for open software there's also a program that operates to 'get the word out'.

* (and I know that on SO in particular, asking and answering your own question which includes a link to software you were involved with is highly likely to draw the ire of moderators or other involved users; in your case it's probably surviving on the basis that you wrote it in response to your original question, rather than posting the question in order to give that response)

On the specifics of your question -

  • should one repost a question-and-answer from there to here. The broad principle is that reposting of questions to multiple places should be avoided

    help/ontopic says:

    Please note, however, that cross-posting is not encouraged on SE sites. Choose one best location to post your question. Later, if it proves better suited on another site, it can be migrated.

    There's some flexibility -- in particular, where one site is likely to offer different kinds of answers, the same question might fruitfully appear on both - we have tolerated some reposted questions before. But since here the purpose is to display exactly the same answer, I'd say that 'different takes on the problem' doesn't apply, and the principle stated in the help will be the one that's more relevant.

  • should one repost that particular question - my feeling would be "probably no", since it would very likely be closed as off topic (even aside all the previous considerations).

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    $\begingroup$ I'd advise something already embedded in this answer. Find a glmnet question in CV, where you can provide an (awesome) answer and use your software to complement it, liking providing examples and outputs with code generated by it. Don't forget to say you are the author of such software. $\endgroup$ May 15, 2015 at 15:41

As I understand your description, this would be a pure software / how-to question. As such, it would be off-topic.

There is, however, a tag. You could leave comments (where it seems appropriate) on tagged questions. You could also edit the tag wiki. Moreover, in answering questions with the tag, it might be fine to mention the package along with the disclosure that you are the author.


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