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Hi. If you're gonna fucking tell somebody to google (or duckduckgo or whatever) something when they ask for help, just shut the fuck up. Most people know perfectly well how to search for shit, and if they're not finding things, they'll turn to the people instead of the shitty search engines. You're insulting their intelligence, and you're making them feel shitty about needing help. Everybody starts somewhere. If you've got the knowledge, share it! Help others! Quit putting them down!

It takes time to register on forums, it takes time to post the question, it takes time to figure out how to explain the problem. And if they're going through that process, there's a good fucking chance that they've already exhausted their search options, and are probably frustrated.

So just don't. You're being an asshole and nobody whatsoever ever appreciates being told "here let me google that for you" or "go google it" or any of that. If you have the knowledge, share it. Otherwise, shut. The. Fuck. Up.

THIS DOES NOT APPLY TO MINORITY MATTERS, by the way. This was mostly pointed at technical questions, but i rather failed to make that clear.

If the question is about somebody's gender, orientation, ethnicity, species, etc, make do with what you find through search engines.

But if the question is technical, shut the fuck up and help, instead of telling somebody to google it. Math, science, physics, electronics/electrical, computers, etc.

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@lindsays if literally the first result on google with the exact question*as asked* on the forum shows the answer? Don't think so

@lindsays There's a corollary to that : sometimes what the questioner is missing is the right invocation, because they don't know the correct jargon to use for their problem.

In those cases, sharing a decent query that returns decent results is an acceptable strategy.

But of course, remembering that if you use google search from a logged-in user, you are getting personalised results that are not necessarily repeatable by the person asking for help.

@lindsays This is great. I ask people because people have experience with things, not just information.

@c0debabe @lindsays Yes. I’m asking for real world experience with, say, a library, or I would like to have a conversation with a person.

I’m not saying I don’t end up at a search engine after spending time with the crickets most of the time, but sometimes I feel like interacting with people.

@lindsays

I spent two hours today searching for what "Timeout" meant in the resumption section of openssl s_client output.

@lindsays Fuck gatekeeping knowledge, all my homies hate gatekeeping knowledge.

@lindsays if I want to be told to google something, I usually ask "i'm trying to find information on X but my search terms aren't working. What search terms should I try instead?"

@lindsays

and it's worse if you DID google it and there were no useful results.

@lindsays I agree to an extent.

It's condescending to say to someone, particularly in environments where people are making conversation, but if for example you have a tech chat room, you sometimes have people that need to learn that seaarching is where they should start, particularly if what they are looking for is an answer and not conversation.

Your community can become overwhelmed with people who will never learn to search if you don't at some point tell them.

However you have to be really careful about it, because just telling them that they can Google is usually not helpful, whether they know how to use it or they don't.

I think its a complicated issue where you sometimes do have to tell people that they should do a search on this thing right here but I agree that its something people should be careful not to be rude about.

TLDR -- if you are going to tell people to search, give them an idea of what to enter into the search field and be nice.

@lindsays Or one might be so lost as not to know what even type into to the search engine of choise.

@lindsays what i always don't get with this people or the comment culture on any other platform.
If it is not interesting to you or you think it's a really dumb question why do you take the time to comment it with an even dumber answer.

The real first question for you is not
"Is it a dumb question?"
the real question is
"Can I help?"

If you can then please do it, if you can't then maybe you can give a direction to search but if not just let it go.

@dasistdaniel @lindsays Some questions do get asked way too much though, like “Linux user here. Why should I use a BSD?”

This question comes in waves.

@lindsays What if you can google the exact thing they just asked and the answer is in the snippet of the first link that shows up?

I have children, this literally happens all the time.

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hackers.town

A bunch of technomancers in the fediverse. Keep it fairly clean please. This arcology is for all who wash up upon it's digital shore.