There has been some small discussion in the comments of a recent post about Physics SE questions appearing in the list of Hot Network Questions (HNQ). It was also brought up that Physics SE can choose to be removed from this list, but even if this is not a choice to be made, I think a discussion about the pros and cons of Physics SE in the HNQ would still be a good one to have.
From what I can tell, the good side of the HNQ is that it gets more people to view the site. If the HNQ question they have arrived at is a good question with good answers, then they will most likely learn some physics, which is awesome. Additionally, these new viewers might explore other questions on the site. So the HNQ essentially brings in more viewers and users, and helps spread physics knowledge to the community. I think everyone can agree these are positive outcomes.
On the other hand, there are instances where HNQ physics questions are not very good questions, at least by the standards of typical Physics SE posts. The question could be poorly written, or it could be about a "pop-sci" topic that many people think they know a lot about, thus garnering many poor quality answers. This is not necessarily bad for regular users and physics experts on the site (although it can be annoying sometimes), but it could be bad for new users to the site and to physics, as they will have an incorrect view of how Physics SE, or physics in general, works.
In my opinion, I think the good outweighs the bad here. Even if there are some "bad apples", I think more people coming here and learning about physics is always good. Plus, we have measures in place to mitigate the bad side. Users can vote on questions and answers, vote to close questions, and even flag questions to be removed from the HNQ should moderators agree to remove them. Of course these measures might not always be enough, but they are what we have at the moment.
What do other, regular Physics SE users think about the HNQ? What are some other pros and cons, and does the bad really outweigh the good?
Please note that this post is not intended to be a discussion on how the HNQ could be better handled on PSE. This post is just intended to be a discussion on how the HNQ affects the site in its current state, and whether it is a net good or net bad effect.