LinuxAnswers - the LQ Linux tutorial section.
Go Back > Forums > Non-*NIX Forums > General
User Name
General This forum is for non-technical general discussion which can include both Linux and non-Linux topics. Have fun!


Search this Thread
Old 11-28-2005, 06:21 AM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Sep 2005
Location: Netherlands
Distribution: SUSE, UBUNTU
Posts: 7

Rep: Reputation: 0
Angry The anti "Google is your friend" thread

Hello fellow LQ'ers,

Lately I was visiting the forum and was browsing around since I myself have underfound some problems with linux too. Now a couple of times I was annoyed by this 'smart remark':
Google is your friend!

Now this is where I get aggrovated!

We as a community are on a website/forum called Linuxquestions, now as we all know, Linux stands for the OS, and questions for any questions referring to the OS. Thus we ask our questions in the hope a fellow community member will help us with our problem. WE (at least I) DO NOT WISH TO BE REFERRED TO GOOGLE! As irony has it, it was google that brought me to this forum in the first place, so please don't put me in a never ending cycle .

Now for the 'smart-asses', I know that google gives more hits then LQ alone, but if we get referred to google once again, then what is this whole forum's point? And don't give me a dumb excuse like "Yeah but some problems are really easy to solve" THAT'S WHY WE HAVE A NEWBIE FORUM! Either post the link YOU found in google while searching for a way to help, or just don't say anything at all. Personally I find the 'google is your friend' just a big 'get alot of posts fast' scam. And ask yourself this question, are you really helping that person, or are you just making him/her feel more n00b?

For future reference, if I were to ask a question on LQ and was given an 'answer' like that, I will simply refer them to this thread, and for those who are with me, please do the same.

I would like to hear other's opinion about this too. I'm open for any criticism and/or support in this matter.

An aggrovated newbie linux student

/me has left this thread, see page 2 in the thread for his final conclusion

Last edited by 27307SB; 11-29-2005 at 06:37 AM.
Old 11-28-2005, 06:57 AM   #2
Senior Member
Registered: May 2004
Location: Australia
Distribution: Gentoo
Posts: 3,544
Blog Entries: 4

Rep: Reputation: 56
Nah sorry. There are a lot of people asking really stupid questions that if they searched first, they'd have their answer already. Now if you have searched but perhaps couldn't think of the right term to search for, then (can't speak for others) I'd be a bit happier to help, but you need to say that in your thread and say what terms you used in a search as well.

I spend a fair amount of my free time on this forum answering what I can and people like trickykid, Xavier and the mods spend way more time here than I do and there are heaps of members that do too. I get the shits answering idiotic questions often, I have to take my hat off to these guys who put up with it day in and day out. Now lets get some examples of threads that Google could have solved easily

Thread 1: link
Googled for "aol linux", the answer was the second result.

Thread 2: link
Googled for "new partition cfdisk", the answer was the second result.

Those were both on the first page of the New Posts search and both linsk that Google gave me walked the user through exactly what was needed. Now don't tell me that I should go do somebody elses research if they just want to come, aska question and wait for an answer. Not gonna happen lad.

EDIT: For the record, I don't think I've referred many people to Google if any, I generally just tell them they are morons and should go search. I don't do it for the post count though and if jeremy wants to turn mine off (which is possible in vB3 - after the update maybe?) I'd be more than happy for that to happen

Last edited by cs-cam; 11-28-2005 at 07:01 AM.
Old 11-28-2005, 07:18 AM   #3
Senior Member
Registered: Dec 2003
Posts: 3,142
Blog Entries: 4

Rep: Reputation: 121Reputation: 121
I am neither pro or anti on this one.

There are situations where a google search is better. And you should be glad that somebody was polite enough to point it out.

And there are situations where asking a direct question in the forum is better. In such a case and if a member still points you to google, it's up to you to ignore him and carry on waiting for others to respond more helpfully.

It all depends on the situation. No rule can be applied generally.

And it always helps to say: "I searched google for this, but I still couldn't find any specific answers. I would be glad if somebody could point this out to me!"

Online or real life, politeness and respectfulness pays. Especially when people are willing to go out of the way to help you get a problem solved free of charge.
Old 11-28-2005, 07:27 AM   #4
LQ Newbie
Registered: Sep 2005
Location: Netherlands
Distribution: SUSE, UBUNTU
Posts: 7

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
If you think some of the questions are that stupid, then why give a response to it? Nobody is forcing a response out of you, or do they have a gun pointed at your head? If they/we do not get a response they/we will eventually end up in a search engine anyway, or do you think we are going to stare at a blank screen 24/7?

Besides, some questions may be really stupid, hell, when I first got to this forum I had never worked with Linux before. I thought that working in the shell ment using your graphical interface. But once again, nobody is saying PLEASE POST SOMETHING THAT IS UTTERLY USELESS AND WHAT I WILL EVENTUALLY END UP DOING ANYWAY!

Then for this comment:
I don't think I've referred many people to Google if any, I generally just tell them they are morons and should go search
How is that helping, seriously.... Once again this forum makes it very clear that it can be used for help with linux by posting your problem. So they post (however silly or stupid the problem may be), look at the reply's and you see someone telling you your a moron. That's a real boost of confidence for those who are just beginning...

...and if jeremy wants to turn mine off (which is possible in vB3 - after the update maybe?) I'd be more than happy for that to happen
That's really nice, but this wasn't my main concern. I just found the 'google remark' so stupid and useless that I couldn't figure out another reason why people would post it. Now I know the reason is because of bitterness towards other members for their stupidity.

And I don't hold a grudge to those who use this comment (alot). I know that alot of your posts are helping people cs-cam. It's just that the google remarks are really unnecessary sometimes...

@ Harishankar:

I do not think it's 'polite' to point out the obvious. And yes you could ignore it, but it would still be bothersome to receive a reply that you can't use for craps.

Online or real life, politeness and respectfulness pays. Especially when people are willing to go out of the way to help you get a problem solved free of charge.
with this I could not agree more

Last edited by 27307SB; 11-28-2005 at 07:28 AM.
Old 11-28-2005, 07:40 AM   #5
Senior Member
Registered: Jan 2002
Location: St Louis, MO
Distribution: Ubuntu
Posts: 1,284

Rep: Reputation: 47
Not wanting to get involved, but ironically the link to how to ask questions is included in Harishankar's sig which basically outlines the whole attitude towards those that ask silly questions and why they get refered to Google. I find it immensely amusing people are able to Google their way onto LQ, register, post, wait an hour for responses and ask again after getting nothing, rather than using Google or even searching on LQ first to find the solution

You seem quite genuine in searching for solutions yourself, which is admirable, however many other people are not. This is where the annoyance comes from, as outlined previously about the number of members that spend a considerable amount of time answering the same basics over + over again. At the end of the day, in the same your argument towards those that should just ignore simple questions and not refer to people Google, not wanting to cause any trouble towards you, but maybe you should ignore those that direct people to Google and try to give the answers to those simple questions...

/me leaves this thread alone now
Old 11-28-2005, 07:50 AM   #6
Senior Member
Registered: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,192

Rep: Reputation: 101Reputation: 101
A lot of people are on here a lot of the time and answering the same question again and again and again becomes tiresome really quickly. In most cases it is often much quicker to get an answer by searching google for 10 or 15 minutes than post a thread and wait for an answer.

It seems most people's first course of action when they get stuck is to post a question on a forum, however that should be the last course of action, first the documentation should be consulted, then google (or your favourite search engine) heavily used and then if you still haven't found an answer post a question.

Posts saying "google is your friend" are a polite way of saying RTFM, or STFW and being told to "Read The F***ing Manual" isn't quite as polite as being told that google may help you
Old 11-28-2005, 07:55 AM   #7
Senior Member
Registered: Mar 2003
Location: Following the white rabbit
Distribution: Slackware64 13.37 Android 4.0
Posts: 2,248

Rep: Reputation: 46
Most of the people who receive a "google" or "search the forums" reply are asking a question that has been asked many times in the past and are obviously too lazy to do a search before asking their question.

If you have taken the time to do a search, and still haven't found an answer for your problem, by all means ask away. Yes, this forum is for asking/answering Linux related questions, but not the exact same question 500 times because 499 people are too lazy to do a search.

Maybe after you've been here a while and see the same things posted over and over again you'll understand.

Also as an additional thought, one of the best ways one can help a person is to teach them how to find information for themselves. Yes, a "RTFM", "google", "search forums" type answer can be a bit annoying, but sometimes it really is the best answer to simple questions.
Old 11-28-2005, 08:04 AM   #8
Registered: Mar 2005
Location: Utah, USA
Distribution: Slackware 11
Posts: 816
Blog Entries: 2

Rep: Reputation: 30
If you ask a silly question, you're gonna get a silly answer.
Old 11-28-2005, 08:13 AM   #9
LQ Newbie
Registered: Sep 2005
Location: Netherlands
Distribution: SUSE, UBUNTU
Posts: 7

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 0
@ fouldsy

(this feels a bit strange, replying to some who has allready left, but for the sake of thread and to explain myself a little more, here we go)

Well let's start with the fact that the 'how to ask questions' thread doesnt include anything about the whole 'google is your friend' attitude. It just points out that you should state that you have already tried google in your post, which I can understand.

...I find it immensely amusing people are able to Google their way onto LQ, register, post, wait an hour for responses and ask again after getting nothing
I never said that the forum didn't include some idiots, but to just ignore them would be the best thing to do, they will post again, sure...but it's all in the same can remember what silly thread to ignore right? Like I said and you say in this 'amusing' dialogue: they started on google searching for something and ended up at LQ, so they will eventually start at the source since they were smart enough to do it once.

...but maybe you should ignore those that direct people to Google and try to give the answers to those simple questions...
I wasn't saying that the problems were easy for me to handle, but if it say's google is your friend, then it has to be easy for that person right?

there is nothing polite about 'google is your friend'. like you said phil.d.g: It's just another way of saying RTFM. If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all. Ignorance is bliss, and being ignored may sound harsh. But it's less time-consuming and less harmfull as being told 'google is your friend'.

And well mason....if there is someone asking something allready posted on the forum, i'd be the first to know, since I always do a search for the person asking the question and if I get a hit I simply post the link to the other thread. and yes some of 'em are lazy, but alot aren't...

@ charred: There are no silly questions, Only silly answers...such as 'google is your friend'...which we are debating about...

I do think the key here is to 'Ignore the ignorant'. IF someone was indeed stupid enough to not expand there search to google or to NOT use the search option within LQ...then just simply ignore...

/me thinks this is looking like a discussion he had with his sister when he was 5 that always ended like this: No, I'm right!, No your wrong, I'm right!

Edit: Also keep in mind that some people just don't know how to do a good search in google. F.E. Wanting to look for how to setup a network with windows and linux. Some people type in: How do you setup a network using windows and linux, not thinking that shortening their search might help 'Network setup, windows linux'. These are things that you have to bear in mind too, and telling them to google once again will just put 'em in a black hole once more.

Last edited by 27307SB; 11-28-2005 at 08:28 AM.
Old 11-28-2005, 11:21 AM   #10
Senior Member
Registered: Jul 2005
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 2,012

Rep: Reputation: 111Reputation: 111
Try searching the forum for things like "scroll wheel", "partitioning", "which distro", and "fstab". You will find an infinite (relatively speaking) number of nearly identical threads. The really funny ones are those that say "Urgent" as well.

As for people not able to use Google and other search engines properly, taking the time to learn would definitely save them half their time in the long run. Anybody who can't learn doesn't belong using the internet.

Also, don't use colors on replies. It is incredibly annoying and unreadable.
Old 11-28-2005, 12:58 PM   #11
Senior Member
Registered: May 2004
Location: Orlando, FL
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 2,896

Rep: Reputation: 73
I tend to find that the people who respond with "Google is your friend" are just trying to be dicks. When I ask a question here, it is because I want the advice of people I trust and know with in the community and not some other site thay may be trying to just sell me the info. I guess it all depends on the question but in most part these responses do nothing for me...
Old 11-28-2005, 12:58 PM   #12
Registered: Apr 2005
Distribution: LFS 5.0 and 6.1
Posts: 705

Rep: Reputation: 30 is also your friend.....
Old 11-28-2005, 01:18 PM   #13
Registered: Nov 2003
Location: N. E. England
Distribution: Fedora, CentOS, Debian
Posts: 16,298

Rep: Reputation: 73
I don't think there is anything wrong in telling someone to search on google, lq or elsewhere. There are a lot of threads here that are just duplicates of things that have been discussed before here and on other sites over the years, so searching usually gives the answer quicker than posting here. If a member searches but the search didn't provide the answer, then its always a good idea, to say "I searched but ....", so that other members know that you have already searched here or elsewhere and they don't tell you to go search.

There are so many members willing to post the same solutions a thousand times, but sometimes it develops a culture of laziness among certain members. Some people here do not bother to do their own research first before posting their questions and this can annoy some members and hence they may respond by telling someone to go search for a solution. I have no problem with this as long as they point the person who asked the question in the right direction e.g. search on google, go to etc.

Last edited by reddazz; 11-28-2005 at 01:50 PM.
Old 11-28-2005, 01:38 PM   #14
Registered: Nov 2002
Location: Kent, England
Distribution: Lubuntu
Posts: 19,176
Blog Entries: 4

Rep: Reputation: 430Reputation: 430Reputation: 430Reputation: 430Reputation: 430
As the author of the widely read how to referenced above, I will say that if you post "I Googled but couldn't find it, can you suggest a better search term" will get you a far better response than "I spent 15 minutes registering here, what's a partition?". And I'm afraid that the simpler questions do crop up over and over again.

The basis of Linux, maybe less so now, is that we are all self sufficient computer users and we can read manuals and search for information and only post when we are genuinely stuck. Many of our members have been here almost since day one and have posted very few times - because they search for the info. In fact, I'd say it's only polite to search first. As gets pointed out regularly here, no one (not even Jeremy) makes a living from LQ. We all do it because we enjoy the subject matter and want to help. Just do us the courtesy of trying to help yourself.

Saying "Google is your friend" is often a much more polite way of pointing out that the answer can be found in under a minute on Google. I now of forums where posting, for example, "what's a partition" will just get your thread closed and the poster potentially banned. LQ is a very easy going forum, but with 386,172 threads (at this time of writing) and 204,823 members, you, will I am sure, understand that answering the same question over and over again can become wearing.

And saying "ignore it" is fine, but we are here to help (and saying "search Google" is helpful) and if we don't answer the user tends to pointlessly bump the thread or write a flaming "Ban Me" post.
Old 11-28-2005, 03:06 PM   #15
Registered: Jun 2005
Posts: 542

Rep: Reputation: 34
I don't think that by telling "google is your friend" or "google it yourself" someone is trying to be a dick. I think it's necessary sometimes to make newbies realize that the answer may be found quickly in the web. It's more like making them fish by themselves, which is better than giving away the fish. There aren't silly questions, but there are silly attitudes that perpetuates laziness. Newbies must know what does "F.A.Q." means, and the only way is to introduce them to the "R.T.F.M." An initiation rite? Yes, it may be.


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Telling people to use "Google," to "RTFM," or "Use the search feature" Ausar General 77 03-21-2010 11:26 AM
[thread control suggestion] add a "solved" button that the thread starter can click atom LQ Suggestions & Feedback 3 03-24-2005 11:55 AM
Take all posts from "Website Suggestions & Feedback" out of the "0 Reply Thread&q t3gah LQ Suggestions & Feedback 7 03-21-2005 07:27 PM
Java error "Exception in thread "main" java.lang.StackOverflowError" nro Programming 1 09-04-2004 03:47 AM
"OH BEHAVE, LINUX!"-my friend Echs Bochs General 13 01-25-2004 08:07 AM

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:14 AM.

Main Menu
Write for LQ is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration