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How to deal with google questions?

related: there are no stupid questions, or are there?

Sometimes there are questions that could be answered very easily via a web search. "what is an sdk?" "how do I find the length of a list in python?". They often get downvoted and people say "why didn't you just search it?". I believe the consensus is that (from the faq) "No question is too trivial."

Now I never want to promote conflict and often just saying nothing is the right thing to do, but if someone gets heat for doing something perfectly legal (if the question is clear and not a duplicate) I feel a very brief explanation "no question is too trivial" in a comment is appropriate. Is this how I should handle things?


1 Answer 1


Yeah, you did the right thing. Calling other voters to task in a comment is totally appropriate, and if done soon enough you can see a visible change of behaviour as a response (e.g. the OP will get an upvote or the downvote will be undone).

I don't vote down questions for being too easy; I may not upvote them though. I will downvote a question if it's asked in a boneheaded manner - e.g. no sample code, incomplete context, or if the tone is belligerent or argumentative.

I will usually upvote an easy question if the OP responds positively, especially if he takes to heart some of the "best practices" advice that he's been given. Here's an example.

  • 1
    Ether: I'd just like to say a big thank you -- I was going to write something very similar. Now I can just upvote you and I don't have to. :)
    – John Rudy
    Commented Nov 11, 2009 at 4:13

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