I am sorry if this post is outside SO rules. This question is more of my personal view over some SO users down-voting questions even when you have provided what is needed to assist.

I recently asked a question on how to break a long text into next line. I have seen multiple responses on SO with some suggestions like:

word-wrap: break-word;
white-space: normal;
width: 100px;

I provided the css but yet the question was down voted. I got upset and decided to look closely at the issue myself. I read up each options and saw that using white-space: normal should have fixed the problem but realized that I was missing !important to override the default one.

Is it wrong for one to ask questions like this. Personally some people are more focused on getting votes while some genuinely work with you to resolve the question no matter how silly the question is.

  • I don't see such a question? The only question you have that has a negative score is stackoverflow.com/questions/19615157/… which is entirely different from what you're describing. – BoltClock's a Unicorn Nov 5 '13 at 9:48
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    @BoltClock'saUnicorn It's the most recent question asked, with a zero-score, but as many downvotes as upvotes. – Bart Nov 5 '13 at 9:49
  • I reported the issue and the down vote was removed – Chelseawillrecover Nov 5 '13 at 9:49
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    Things like "I have tried the following but not working" tend to get downvotes. The question that immediately follows is; how is it not working: wrong result, error message, computer explodes? – Richard Tingle Nov 5 '13 at 9:58
  • @RichardTingle thanks for the heads up and will keep this in mind on future questions – Chelseawillrecover Nov 5 '13 at 9:59
  • You have actually explained what went wrong in other parts of the question, but there are some phrases that are so associated with bad questions that they set people off automatically – Richard Tingle Nov 5 '13 at 10:01
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    Hmm like? Please let me know so I don't make similar mistake next time – Chelseawillrecover Nov 5 '13 at 10:04
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    You did not provide a reproducible example of the problem, even after commenters requested one. The fiddle you posted in a comment is completely irrelevant to the problem you described. I'm surprised you didn't get more downvotes. – interjay Nov 5 '13 at 10:15
  • @interjay, I am not really experienced with using fiddle but educate me if every question needs a fiddle to reproduce the problem so next time I do that. Thanks – Chelseawillrecover Nov 5 '13 at 10:22
  • Posting this question here has really now help me to understand more on what is expected from SO questions and how to avoid more questions been asked on top of the original question. – Chelseawillrecover Nov 5 '13 at 10:25
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    @Chelseawillrecover The information needed to reproduce the problem should be in the question itself. A fiddle is a nice optional bonus to help people see the problem and show that it's reproducible. In this case, I don't see what the fiddle has to do with the question at all (it does some AJAX stuff and doesn't seem to have any text to be wrapped). – interjay Nov 5 '13 at 10:26
  • The fiddle isn't the important part (but feel free to include one) the important thing for any "program" is that it can be used as is and replicate the problem (I'm using the word program quite widely to include any complete set of "code") – Richard Tingle Nov 5 '13 at 10:28
  • @interjay, OK thanks. In the event that I am unable to reproduce using a fiddle, I will post all the codes in the question itself. Although I did post all the html code but not the JS code. I was trying to avoid putting a long code in post to avoid the system probably flag that there are more codes than question – Chelseawillrecover Nov 5 '13 at 10:30
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    You should provide a complete code sample, but it's vital that it's also short (i.e. you should remove anything and everything that's not applicable to the problem at hand - and make sure to test that the trimmed-down code still reproduces the problem). See sscce.org for more details. And your fiddle should essentially be an exact copy of the code that's already in the question. – Dukeling Nov 5 '13 at 11:46

Your question does not seem bad, however, from looking at your interactions with the answerers it appears that they needed more code to be able to answer your question fully.

For example Hiral appears to have believed that they solved the problem, probably because they "filled in" the missing code from your question differently from reality.

I cannot see when the downvotes occurred but it’s highly likely that they were before you posted your fiddle link (which should be in the question not the comments and should be additional information rather than essential to the question) and more detailed code. As I'm not a user of css I cannot say for sure but your code still doesn't look complete so it's still not ideal. You want a short but complete code snippet that could be run to replicate the problem. This should be in the question itself (with a fiddle link as an optional extra if you wish)

As a general rule if someone answers your question in a way that should answer it but because of missing information (such as a complete sscce) the answer doesn't help they will often downvote because the question was by definition not clear enough to be answered in its current form.

With the inclusion of the fiddle and slightly more code you appear to have subsequently got more upvotes which suggests people are now happier with the question

  • fiddle link (which should be in the question not the comments) - actually, fiddle link should not be needed at all, everything important should be in a question itself. That's why fiddle link only posts are no longer valid. If question depends on external link, and will cease to be useful if the link is no longer valid, there is something wrong with it. – Mołot Nov 5 '13 at 10:13
  • @Mołot I do agree, but that part of the site seems obsessed with them, if it's going in at all it should be in the question – Richard Tingle Nov 5 '13 at 10:14
  • Hmmm its new to me that fiddle only posts are no longer valid. Noted – Chelseawillrecover Nov 5 '13 at 10:14
  • @Chelseawillrecover See this: meta.stackexchange.com/q/149890/225745 – Mołot Nov 5 '13 at 10:15
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    @Mołot OK I have seen it now. Will have a read for better understanding – Chelseawillrecover Nov 5 '13 at 10:18

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