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At the moment, members of the SO community are actively discouraging simple questions on the basis of what have you tried. If we do this, a question like

What is the syntax for a SELECT statement in SQL?

would be immediately rejected. That's fine and even makes sense, but now, if I google this question, I'm not going to find my answer on SO. To me, the answer to this simple question may actually improve the value of the site and can therefore be a good thing.

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We don't need to be a repository for every question you could possibly think of. That particular question shows no research effort whatsoever and as such would not be a great loss to the site. –  Bart Feb 18 '13 at 14:15
    
Nice of you to vote me down... I was just asking to try and understand the logic, not because I necessarily thought it was a good idea. ;) –  neelsg Feb 18 '13 at 14:31
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See the faq; votes on MSO are different from the regular Stack Exchange websites. –  Martijn Pieters Feb 18 '13 at 14:32
    
@MartijnPieters -- Thanks for clearing that up –  neelsg Feb 18 '13 at 14:39

2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

No, we shouldn't. Things which can be easily Googled really don't need to be on SE, we're aiming for high quality answers to good questions. Not short answers to questions which have been answered a million times over. We're not trying to become a manual here.

If a question keeps getting asked on SO, however, then it is OK to self-answer a question on it, provided that the answer is good and the question has no issues other than being Googleable. (it's better to do this with community consensus first, and then close all the other questions as dupes of this)

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We do not need Stack Overflow to become a substitute for software documentation and manuals.

We want SO to be a supplement instead, where you go to when you have problems making stuff go after you read the documentation.

Otherwise you'd never find your interesting questions and answers among the great heap of general knowledge that can be left to the specialized documentation instead.

So, no, I don't want to see simple and obvious questions left on the site. The downvote button doesn't have this tooltip for nothing:

This question does not show any research effort; it is unclear or not useful

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