When I comited to this site, the title was Database.

It suddenly became Database Administrators, why that ?

Talking about database is not only the administration side it's all the task around also.

Data modeling, SQL problems, Database decision, etc...

I just would like to know why did the name changed ?

  • 2
    +1 I too was wondering the same.
    – Lazer
    Jan 3, 2011 at 21:02
  • 17
    As a developer (i.e. not a DBA), I may use the site for general database questions, and I feel that calling it DBAs is intimidating in that the name specifically describes a role that I don't fill. Jan 3, 2011 at 21:06
  • 3
    @Michael Kopinsky: Same here I am not a DBA just a dev and this naming might push people away. That how I feel it
    – Spredzy
    Jan 3, 2011 at 21:07
  • 1
    @MichaelKopinsky @Spredzy - I had brought up the same point in the question @Robert has posted in the answer. Jan 4, 2011 at 4:16
  • 1
    So should we start a new topic or rename this one to pick a better site name?
    – jcolebrand Mod
    Jan 5, 2011 at 3:54
  • @Michael - I feel "Database Administrators" also scares away non-RDBMS people, specifically the NoSQL crowd, which we want more of. Aug 15, 2011 at 20:02
  • I agree. I am a programmer rather than database administrator. Administrating database is just a small part of what I do and I am not that good.
    – user4951
    Aug 6, 2012 at 3:22
  • Actually I am a businessman that happen to know some programming. Go figure.
    – user4951
    Aug 6, 2012 at 3:24

8 Answers 8


The change was originally discussed here:

Why is Area 51 proposal for Database renamed to Database Administrators?

Essentially, "Databases" isn't terribly clear name for a site. It is used by many professional disciplines. So we had to become absolutely crystal clear about the primary audience for this site. Ideally, a clearer title could have be chosen early on, but before launching the site, a choice had to be made.

Our choice came down to either closing it as a duplicate of Stack Overflow and Server Fault


to clarify the proposal as a site for "Database Administrators"… a site for professionals who properly call themselves "DBAs" as a full-time profession; Those who identify themselves as neither programmers nor system administrators and don't currently feel they have a place on our network.

So we renamed "databases" to DBAs before launch rather than leaving the target audience to chance, and later having to close it down when 70-80% of the content duplicated existing sites.

  • 9
    But there's some of us that really don't like the DBA label. Data Modeler, yes. Informatician, fine. Even though I'm the database admin at my place of work, I've had such bad experience with people with the title 'DBA' that even after taking all of the Oracle DBA classes, I refused to take the certification test. Anyway, the point is -- DBA is server management, and would fit on ServerFault; data modeling is what didn't have a home.
    – Joe
    Jan 4, 2011 at 4:55
  • 4
    @Joe: Nothing is written in stone. Suggest a better name for this site and post the suggestion to meta. If it's better (and not simply different) and it has a high approval from the community, I'm sure it would be considered. That's what meta and private betas are for. Jan 4, 2011 at 4:59
  • 2
    Even if we want to differentiate this site from SO and SU, I still don't think the best way is by defining it using a term that limits the audience. SO is about programmING, SU is about system administraTION; the site name should focus on what it's about rather than who it's for. You're right, I should propose a better name rather than complaining about the current one, but unfortunately my creative juices aren't running at the moment. Jan 5, 2011 at 22:29
  • 1
    I think it's ok to think like that, but it should have been done in the definition phase, not on the release. It seems so weird now, it is as Michael commented on the question (second comment).
    – BrunoLM
    Jan 6, 2011 at 23:32
  • @BrunoLM: Agreed, absolutely; the proposal should have been either closed (as a duplicate) or fixed to make it not a duplicate of SO/SF... by the community. That didn't happen, so we had a choice: close it (as a dupe) or fix it in the last hour. Jan 6, 2011 at 23:39
  • 7
    Part of why I liked the original proposal was that while programmers post questions on StackOverflow, the admins read/answered questions on ServerFault (and DBAs never quite fit in there). What is needed is somewhere where a programmer can ask a database 'guru' for advice, be it on modelling or performance or troubleshooting...
    – Gary
    Jan 10, 2011 at 5:55

Database Professionals

Similar to what drachenstern said, but to make sure there's a focus on databases as the organizing theme, and not stuff like self-documenting file formats for storing scientific data and other stuff that's completely unrelated to databases.

(could still conclude informatics as it applied to databases, but not issues like signal processing and what the official definition of 'flux' is for designing your controlled vocabulary to describe scientific data.)

  • @drachenstern : crap ...can't spell ... oh well, it's better than finding out the software flakiness was because typo'd a variable name in code that's been in production for over a year ... that was Monday.
    – Joe
    Jan 7, 2011 at 21:34
  • oh ouch, that would suck :p ;)
    – jcolebrand Mod
    Jan 7, 2011 at 21:35
  • 1
    .. which was the initial name Jan 8, 2011 at 5:33

What about

Data Professionals

does that take away from the DB perspective?

edited to highlight the title

  • 2
    Do we want to include informatics? I'd think that 'data professionals' would also start getting into the sort of more theoretical / philosophical questions that Brian Ballsun-Stanton mentioned. Basically, if it's too inclusive, where do we draw the line? (but hey, I still like it better than DBA)
    – Joe
    Jan 5, 2011 at 15:05
  • 1
    I say yes, we include informatics.
    – jcolebrand Mod
    Jan 6, 2011 at 3:17
  • 5
    As a cynical DBA, every Java or C# code monkey is a "data professional" who of course knows more than you
    – gbn
    Feb 3, 2011 at 13:19

I think the idea is exactly to bring new professionals. Developers using databases as a tool to their applications should keep to ask on SO or Programmers.SE.

DBA.SE was created to another niche, for other professionals. This site is not a specialization of SO or PSE or SF.

Just my opinion


Because this site will focus on DBA's tasks.

Put the professionals with their

  • skills gained by training and/or experience
  • acttual administrator accessto on some DBMS
  • DBA responsibilities as part of an employment

a bit into the background and look at the tasks they have to fulfill. That opens the the site fore the part-time DBAs.


Another proposal: (delta'd from Information Storage and Analysis)

Data Storage and Analysis

Since that's what we all do anyways. It just sounds funky.

edited to highlight the proposal


How about DBMS as a more specific / IT definition of database ?

I saw this forum as filling in the gap between StackExchange and ServerFault.

There's a bunch of questions (eg modelling, performance) that are not down to programming, but are also not part of of 'administration' in the same manner as replication or backups might be.

In many organisations the people performing this job may have the title DBA but the task is more design than admin.



It's nice and simple.

  • 1
    It might work for the DNS name, but I'd be reluctant, as 'research data' questions might be stuff like questions about data visualization, selecting file formats, converting between file formats, how to encode values, documentation of data, calibration, sensor design, survey design, etc. ... and then there's webserver log analysis, business intelligence ... ick.
    – Joe
    Jan 10, 2011 at 1:10
  • Point. I do like it for the DNS name though. Jan 10, 2011 at 1:17

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