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I noticed that in SO there are a lot of mysterious users. I mean users who generally behave as follows:

Scene 1

Post a general question about a general problem on their code. These kind of questions are generally followed by comments such as "Should we guess what your code is or you can provide it?".

Sample:

I'm working on a project that uses session but $_SESSION seems to be empty, what should i do?

Scene 2

After they feel like the need to post their code, they post it partially or incomplete most of the time full of typo. (This is kinda mysterious and you, as reader, feel like these code must be something really secret because they seems not to care too much about the answer itself since they provide such few details that other people must ask for more).

Sample:

if ($_SESSION['ix_logged']) {
    echo "Welcome back". $_SESSION['user_name
} else {
    echo $message;
}

EDIT: I'm getting the following error: Notice: Undefined $_SESSION on line X

Scene 3

Someone understands that it must be partial code and asks for the missing part. At this point the questioner just fixes his code and tries to convince the reader that the problem is in that part of the code and not in the one that is missing. (Here you understand it is some kind of super secret project, perhaps under NDA.)

    if ($_SESSION['is_logged']) {
        echo "Welcome back". $_SESSION['user_name'];
    } else {
        echo $message;
    }

EDIT: Oh, yes sorry i made a typo :) but i'm sure the problem is there since the line of the error is the first i posted.

Scene 4

So the reader ask for it anyway assuring that the code will remain between them and nobody else will see it. But the questioner is worried about it anyway.

Reader: Hey man seriously, i'll pay you 100 bucks if you post your entire code. Also it's not sure that the error line is referring to that line, it could be else where. Questioner: Ehm, listen to me and trust me: the problem is there.

Scene 5

So the reader asks him to paste it in Paste bin that has a "private" feature so that the code is protected and to email the needed information to access that private content. But the answer doesn't trust you and reject the proposal.

Reader: You could past it on pastebin, you'll be able to keep it private and you can pass the needed information at reader@saintandmartyr.com Questioner: I don't have email...

Scenes 6, 7, 8, 9 You try with no success to get the code.

Scene 10 You find the way to get the code with Jedi mind manipulation and you get in front of the code and you are thinking about killing that guy wherever he is.

Sample:

$i = 1;
if ($i = 1) {
    session_destroy();
    $_SESSION = NULL; // kill it Johnny, kill it!
}

$message = "Hidden message";

if ($_SESSION['is_logged']) {
    echo "Welcome back". $_SESSION['user_name'];
} else {
    echo $message;
}
share|improve this question
4  
Do you have an actual example, rather than just anecdotal supposition? –  Grace Note Mar 11 '11 at 18:19
2  
If you're going to insult NASA, would you at least provide some sort of flimsy justification for doing so? –  Pops Mar 11 '11 at 18:21
    
Yep a few, I just forgot where I've seen them. –  Sofffia Mar 11 '11 at 18:22
    
@Popular, @Matt, fixed the NASA problem. –  Sofffia Mar 11 '11 at 18:24
1  
Really, if you haven't down-voted / close-voted and moved on by Scene 3... 4 at the latest... then you're a glutton for punishment. RUNAWAAAAY! –  Shog9 Mar 11 '11 at 18:25
    
Let's see some concrete examples. Otherwise, you're just complaining. –  Matt Ball Mar 11 '11 at 18:25
2  
(Also, did you perhaps mean "NSA"? Don't worry, they don't read this. And that's not what they'd tell you if they did.) –  Shog9 Mar 11 '11 at 18:26
    
@Matt, I thought that about everyone here would have assisted to these kind of Acts. I didn't thought I was needing samples. –  Sofffia Mar 11 '11 at 18:28

2 Answers 2

up vote 6 down vote accepted

In this case just let it go and don't answer. You are not obliged to answer each and every question posted on the website.

The user will get the hint and next time will either paste the source code, avoid asking the question altogether, or ask the question anyway and get no answers.

share|improve this answer
1  
+1, as hard as it can be sometimes when you know "if I only knew the full picture I know I could help", if you have to pull teeth to get the full picture sometimes your time is better spent elsewhere –  Daniel DiPaolo Mar 11 '11 at 19:21

Vote to close them as Not a Real Question

If you don't have sufficient rep, or are out of close votes, flag for moderator attention. However, I don't generally act without some community consensus unless the question is clearly off-topic, so those of you who have close votes, please use them!

share|improve this answer
1  
Or submit a Not a Real Question flag, if you can't vote to close. –  Pops Mar 11 '11 at 18:23

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