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Angelina's avatar

If a question is easily answered by checking Wikipedia or Google, should it be flagged as abuse?

Asked by Angelina (400points) March 5th, 2008

For example, I just saw a question that read “Explain superdelegates.” To me, that’s a lazy question and undermines the purpose and spirit of Fluther.

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24 Answers

glial's avatar

I agree and have made other posts on this subject. So I am reporting you for abuse for not searching…..just kidding.

Vincentt's avatar

While I might agree that this might be appropriate, I’m not sure whether I’d go through the trouble. The Flas as abuse option is way to much work IMHO – at least two pageloads. In that time, you could easily redirect the user to ;-)

fortris's avatar

I dont think its “abuse”, just annoying. Abuse would be a hate speech with people asking him if he’s right.

Vincentt's avatar

@fortris – well, Fluther’s definitions of ‘abuse’ are Spam, Obscene, Dumb or Something else, so it could fit.

ibanezfunk's avatar

As rodney said can’t we all just get along

robmandu's avatar

Not disagreeing…

But to take the other side…

It appears to me that a lot of folks somehow end up on Fluther without knowing about Wikipedia (or perhaps they simply distrust it). And for some topics, a Google search can lead to more effort than asking a bunch of people directly.

I’m kinda in the middle of the latter right now. :-|

gailcalled's avatar

If we are willing to do the Google research, then we are choosing to do someone else’s homework.

That has nothing to do with us getting along.

ironhiway's avatar

It’s not just the question or the answer.
Quality discussion or interaction is the primary value of Fluther.
Yes some questions take simple searches, like who was the 16th president, no discussion no value.
However the question you reference becomes more relevant to interaction, in that the Democratic ticket may be decided on super delegates.
Thus generating definitions and meaningful discussion of the super delegates themselves.

cwilbur's avatar

I thnk it’s flaggable as “Dumb.” I’d rather see a flag saying “Easily found elsewhere.”

@ironhiway: if the question was, “Is it wise to have superdelegates in a position to decide the Presidential nomination?” then it would be a good question. Or if it was “I don’t understand why the Democrats bother with superdelegates – can someone explain the advantages?” then I wouldn’t have a problem with it.

I’m just tired of questions that can be easily answered with a Google or WIkipedia search. I don’t learn anything from them that I couldn’t have learned on my own, and so there’s no value in the interaction for me.

iSteve's avatar

I really don’t think it should be considered “abuse”.

gailcalled's avatar

@iSteve: click on “flag as abuse” and also reread Vincentt’s comment. “Abuse” is not one of the choices; it is a descriptive umbrella term.

Fluther’s definitions of ‘abuse’ are Spam, Obscene, Dumb or Something else.

Zaku's avatar

I don’t think it’s abuse. There could be some discussion even about a point of knowledge, or someone might know something more interesting than appears on Wiki or Google. It’s easy to ignore uninteresting threads here.

peggylou's avatar

I think it’s a very valid question! I closely follow the primary process of election and have heard the term “superdelegate” very often. I know it has something to do with a delegate being able to vote one way or another, depending on what they feel like. But I certainly do not understand exactly what a superdelegate is; nor do I understand the background of a superdelegate. I RESENT the label of “dumb.” I certainly am not dumb! And I would certainly appreciate the opportunity to hear more discussion about superdelegates—who they are; what they can do; how they came about; why are they so important right now? etc.,etc.,etc. Before flagging any question, I would like the “flagger” to ask themselves, “Should or could everyone be aware of what the answer to this question is?” I’m sure that if someone asked a question about politics in the 50’s and 60’s, I might think their question dumb. But most of you are not aware of everything that happened in the 50’s or 60’s. So I would hope that I would not call you dumb! I hope that I would have enough insight to realize that you have not yet had the opportunity to be aware of the meaning of a certain word, event, or terminology. I agree with ironhiway. The purpose of Fluther is interaction and discussion

artemisdivine's avatar

I 100% agree with peggy lou

i am seeing more and more insensitive, miserable, mean, insulting comments on answers. and it pains me. i think this place is going downhill. and i only found it less than 2 months ago. if only people would post something RELEVANT and stop insulting people asking questions. if you DONT like the questions quit answering them not directed to the person who posed the question, it is directed to those know it alls you know who you are

and it is the SAME PEOPLE OVER AND OVER who go just google it blah blah blah.. THEIR reply of just google it should be called abuse… either that or they are on this site WAY too much (and yes a bunch are in this post)

and a LOT of these people are NEWBIES who might have just found fluther. if you want to make this some kind of clique for only the “know it alls” then define it as such. but dont pretend to be some open minded all inclusive website if you are just gonna diss people. since when do you get so high and mighty? there are TONS of questions i think are stupid or a waste of time on here (like every single I PHONE question) but i dont run around and say oooooh you could go to google and do that. completely lame.

Vincentt's avatar

@peggylou – “Dumb” (a bit of an unlucky term) refers not to the fact that you don’t know the answer, but that you didn’t look it up (which can very easily be done). If you can ask “What is a superdelegate” then we can either make up our own Wikipedia article or refer you to Wikipedia manually. The former is a lot of work and the latter is very frustrating if you just could’ve went there yourself.
If you want to know why superdelegates are so important all of a sudden, then you should ask that.
There are people here looking for interesting questions to answer/discuss, and “what is a superdelegate?” isn’t one. If we’d be interested in that, it is very easy for us, too, to look it up.

cwilbur's avatar

@artemisdivine: I’m seeing a lot more idiotic, poorly spelled, and lazy questions where the querent wants the other people on Fluther to do a Wikipedia and Google search and summarize the answers. If you want to be an unpaid research assistant (and from your annotated-bibliography answers, it looks like that’s something you aspire to), then by all means, carry on; that’s not what I’m here for, and comments redirecting the people who ask basic factual questions to Wikipedia and Google are the best way to maintain Fluther as an interesting discussion sit.

Zaku's avatar

@artemisdivine: Thanks. I don’t know if I’ve been coming across that way or not, but I see I’ve been answering sarcastically (or smartasstically) sometimes, which isn’t really what I want to contribute, so I’ll get off it. Thanks.

Angelina's avatar

I think CWilbur’s idea of a flag for “Easily found elsewhere” is a good one.

My question wasn’t meant to imply that people are dumb, or that I’m elitist about Fluther. I think this is a really great site and what distinguishes it from others, and from search engines, is that you can ask real people for answers that could NOT be easily found elsewhere. My concern is that, as we get an increasing number of search engine type questions, that the entire premise of Fluther gets undermined.

gailcalled's avatar

@Angelina: well-said. I got a notification of 39 new questions this morning; many of them were Jr. High “Advice to the Lovelorn,” morbid fascination (Jr. High, also, I would guess) with the urinary tract and related tracts, beer and pot, repetition and just plain incomprehensibility, to me at least.

I (and others whom I respect) have been fulminating on the quality of many recent Qs & As rather than participating in quality discussions. A pity.

cwilbur's avatar

@gailcalled: too true about the Advice to the Lovelorn Adolescents, especially when the majority of responses are “s/he has said s/he is not interested, MOVE ON” and “make your best guess, and if it doesn’t work out, there are other fish in the sea.”

Zaku's avatar

@gail, cwilbur, et alea: It sounds like something the tag filters and notification algorithm might be able to help with. Is the issue for you that that content doesn’t belong on Fluther at all, or that Fluther is adding it to your “Questions for you” and you only want questions on those topics when they’re more interesting in a way that seems hard to describe in flags?

gailcalled's avatar

@Zaku; I find that many of the new niagara of questions have tags that normally would interest me (relationships, psychology, etc) but the content is really silly, simple-minded or written in a language that I don’t recognize.

Ben and Andrew have their hands full; growing pains imply that fluther goes thru stages but seems to have regressed from mature to early teens.

Check out cwilbur’s cogent and sensible (as always) new question.

cwilbur's avatar

@Zaku: the issue is that there have been a half-dozen questions in the past week of the form “I want to be romantically involved with $person, but $person has made his or her lack of interest clear; what can I do?” There’s only one answer to that, and I’ve answered it a half-dozen times.

I want discussion of interesting things here. I don’t want rehashes of high school relationship drama from people who didn’t bother to see an identical question asked four hours earlier and who won’t bother to see that the answers to their question are identical to the answers to the identical question asked by someone else suffering from teenaged unrequited love.

If Fluther is going to become advice to the teenaged lovelorn alternating with bathroom humor, so be it, and I’ll find something else to do. But I think it has a lot more potential than that.

Zaku's avatar

@gail & cwilbur: Yep, I see your points. I’ll continue on the more pointed thread .

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