Monday, April 2, 2012


I browse many forums and comment more than I need to. I tell myself that, indirectly, it sells my book. There's some truth in that. Mostly, I'm bored. And I do learn a lot; there are a lot of smart folks out there.

Yet I never fail to be amazed by the number of folks that ask dumb and overly broad questions  rather than make some effort minimal search the question first. I don't think I'm being to harsh. There are good questions: those on new topics, fine points, brand-specific problems or ideas, and those written just for the joust. But honestly....Search engines are the best free tool of our time. I feel bad, asking folks to type about something I could have found quickly, and I feel bad about wasting forum's space. And yet, dumb questions get the most answers, since the multitudes--including those that don't actually know--will post an answer. I find "ASK" to be hysterical; the clueless voting for right answers on topics they don't understand.

Pass the popcorn. My rant for the day. I've been waiting for a year for a reason to post this cool graphic.


  1. Truth.

    Its kind of funny that everyone likes to chime in and say, "There are no bad questions." I beg to differ. Asking questions over and over that have already been answered just muddles the water, makes it harder for people to search effectively in the future, and is generally a waste of people's time.

    Also my other pet peeve on people that just blindly ask stupid questions that have already been answered... They always seem to use the most ambiguous thread title possible. "heading out soon" is a gun thread. "Question about boat" is all about check valves in bilge pump lines. "How do I fix it" is a question about battery sizing. Drives me nuts.

  2. I think that part of what supports the asking of questions that don't need answering is that there are a lot of people on forums who seem to enjoy providing answers . . . even when it's over and over again.

  3. Ross:

    Of course this is true.

    I also wonder about libraries and books. With a forum inquiry they get too-short answers from individuals that may or may not know the topic. Perhaps they want a "quick fix"; a quick answer demanding neither reading nor reflection. A shame.