A recent downvote drew my attention to my answer four years ago to "How to Add Smart Tags to my .net component?". I edited the answer to update the links and to (very slightly) change the tone of the answer. I was in a very bad mood at the time of the answer.

Still, reading the comments, I think I was largely correct: it's better for the site if we encourage people to do a little research before posting. Maybe even just the "two minutes of searching" that I refer to in the answer.

I was considering deleting the answer, but decided to bring the old debate back to Meta, instead.

"Was I right, or was I right?"


I think you should search meta before you ask your next question. I searched for Rude Answer and the second hit was:

What to do with rude but correct (and valuable) answers?

The fact that the answer was yours shouldn't make a difference on what you should do.

You should also note that when you use the techniques described in those answers (downvoting a post or explaining in comments why a post is bad) it may still take time for the person to realize they are violating community standards.

For example here even though it got a bunch of downvotes and comments pointing out the issue the OP still thought it was ok to include rude comments in the answer.

  • In my opinion, the answer was only slightly rude. I was genuinely trying to find out if there was a reason why the OP did not search. Now, four years later, I know that the answers are either: 1) they don't know about MSDN, or 2) They couldn't figure out what to search for, or 3) (more likely) they're too lazy. – John Saunders Nov 1 '13 at 17:17
  • 3
    At the very least the comments are implying that the OP was one of those things. Implying someone is 1) ignorant 2) stupid or 3) lazy may often be construed as rude (even when true). – Some Helpful Commenter Nov 1 '13 at 17:59
  • I don't disagree entirely. Way back then, I did a number of things that amounted to "poke him, and if he screams, then you can ask him why he did that". Since then, I've found that they usually don't scream, and if they do, they will generally not tell you why they did that. I no longer poke people as an experimental technique. – John Saunders Nov 1 '13 at 20:15

As per the tooltip for downvoting a question, you should downvote a question that "does not show any research effort". Clearly it is site policy that questions should demonstrate research effort (this is also discussed in the help center and FAQ in more detail).

To what degree research should be demonstrated, and whether or not the given question demonstrated sufficient research, is something that is left up to the opinions of those reading the question to exercise through their votes.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .