On Stackoverflow, I often come across questions of the type:

I'm trying to do X as seen on site Y.
How do I do it?

Could this type of reverse engineering question be added to What types of questions should I avoid asking?

It seems that they come up often enough and get voted-down/closed enough to warrant a warning in the help center.

For example:

Related: How to handle "How do they do that" type of questions

  • Do you have some examples?
    – FDinoff
    Jun 13, 2013 at 0:49
  • @FDinoff This one hasn't been down-voted or closed yet, but its an example of the sort of question I'm talking about stackoverflow.com/q/17076986/1947286
    – apaul
    Jun 13, 2013 at 0:51
  • 5
    There is a close reason being refined that deals with this, basically saying that questions that just point to third party code without including any specific bits and end in 'how do I do what they did?' aren't on topic. It's not yet baked, so I'm not yet officially answering - but this is one of the cases we considered when coming up with the initial set of close reasons for Stack Overflow.
    – user50049
    Jun 13, 2013 at 1:04
  • @FDinoff See update.
    – apaul
    Jun 13, 2013 at 4:51
  • @TimPost, any movement?
    – TRiG
    Jan 10, 2014 at 22:53


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