I visit PSE once in a full moon, and all I see is closed questions, most marked with down votes and close votes.

Seriously, with this ratio of negative votes towards questions and unpleasant welcome to new users, I had to ask this question. Does the rules of PSE are only well known to its moderators or peoples with high reputations? or they are just bullying here and making life of new visitors miserable?

How much does PSE wants people to come over and share their problem? If every question is treated like bullying the questioner then what's the use of having an open question/answer platform?


After reading few answers in meta I have decided not to return to PSE until next election. The scope is confusing, Bully Dictators hold the power, new members are treated as "you piece of crap came here to ask? lemme give you some treat". This place was bully-land few years ago, I found its same still. These answers gives more info about PSE as a whole:

https://softwareengineering.meta.stackexchange.com/a/5676/79803 https://softwareengineering.meta.stackexchange.com/a/5681/79803 https://softwareengineering.meta.stackexchange.com/a/5686/79803

  • possible duplicate of Are you still confused about what Programmers is for? – gnat Feb 23 '14 at 13:06
  • 5
    "This site is all about getting answers. It's not a discussion forum." (About page) – gnat Feb 23 '14 at 13:09
  • 2
    @gnat: whatever it is, it runs through user input and people like you are taking freedom from other people to put their input here by closing literally any question asked by new members. – user79803 Feb 23 '14 at 13:22
  • 1
    I merely point out that your statement about "open discussion platform" seems to bend the reality. Consider editing it to adjust to site purpose as it is explained in about page – gnat Feb 23 '14 at 13:26

Programmers can be an unpleasant place to ask questions when you don't understand what this site wants to be, and what questions are acceptable. It is not trying to be “an open discussion platform”. The mission is defined as:

Programmers Stack Exchange is a site for professional programmers who are interested in getting expert answers on conceptual questions about software development.

How the site works is outlined in the Tour and further elaborated upon in the Help Center – especially the On Topic page is important. It seems that a number of users come to this site with substantially different expectations, for example:

  • This is a place for programming-related discussions, like a forum. It would be nice to hear a few opinions.
  • If they don't like my question on Stack Overflow, they'll love it here.
  • I can hire a programmer here. Maybe they'll even do my work for me for free.
  • This site is about solving programming problems, like why my program doesn't compile.
  • I can get advice on how to become a (better) programmer.
  • These guys know what tool I could use, or what book I should read.
  • The ppl here c an comprahend evn teh worstly formated question here plus not good grammar plz send me solution thanks!!1

Sorry, but no. So when a question is off topic or otherwise unsuitable for this site, I will put in a close vote. It is not intended to mean “you are full of ignorant shit”, instead it's an invitation to the asker to inform him-/herself on what's acceptable here, and to clean up the question so that it can be reopened.

For questions that “do not show any research effort; are unclear or not useful”, I will put in a downvote. If it does show effort, and is useful and interesting, I'll upvote. See also the tooltips when hovering over the up-/downvote arrow. Votes are a form of content moderation, and are also an incentive to users to post good questions. For example, I downvoted your question because it reads like a rant (it fails in the useful and clarity categories, and does not offer data to back up the claims).

  • 2
    Your tagline is wrong here... how do you define Concept in software development? Its all opinion based. – user79803 Feb 23 '14 at 13:36
  • 2
    @JhilkeDai subjective questions aren't necessarily bad – read Good Subjective vs. Bad Subjective. In the quoted section, conceptual means abstract, in order to differentiate this site from Stack Overflow. – amon Feb 23 '14 at 13:42
  • 2
    this is how you confuse new members... Good subjective, bad subjective, half opinion based, full opinion based, semi opinion based, good fit, semi good fit, bla bla.. So, you mean people should take one week off and read all the posts, blogs, faqs, articles before asking their question? every person doesn't come here with a motto to be moderator and learn all the rules, a simple guideline should be enough to get started and let them ask their question. – user79803 Feb 23 '14 at 13:50
  • 2
  • 3
    @JhilkeDai I agree, that's why we have the tour page. It outlines how the site works, and what is acceptable. And then there's the general idea that one should be respectful of other people's time – try for yourself before asking others. And when your ask, clearly show what you've tried, what you want, and what you have: make it easy for others to help you. Together, tour and respect are the simple guideline to get started, the rest is just elaboration on that. – amon Feb 23 '14 at 14:32

I'm going to pull up some recently closed questions and am curious what you feel is bullying or the appropriate approach to deal with the questions. If you have issues about other specific questions and you feel like they are getting an unfair treatment, please consider posting questions on meta about those


I'm really new to database careers and no idea what is their work look like. All I know is they maintain or design a database.

What I want to know is the career path of Database Administrator, what I mean is for example a programmer in the future may become a team leader and so on. What about in database what is the hierarchy of this job. And also I want to know what is the required knowledge and technology to attain a specific level of the job.

Put on holds off topic - career and education advice


Lots of stuff

And so on… the rows indicates user and each 17 columns represents page hits to that page by that user.

So send me the code in java to perform this operation.

(not closed currently, but on its way)


Recently, my friend got me interested in programming. I've always thought it was this ultra complicated concept, but after watching the code.org's "What Schools Don't Teach" I'm really wanting to work on something. I want to build Android and Windows apps and games. I would like to build a building/tower defense-esq game for both both platforms. My main questions are:

-What programming languages should I learn?

-What engine should I use for a 2D building/ RTS (much like Ubisoft's "The Settlers Online")?

Closed as what language, technology, or project one should take up next

You appear to be referring most recently, however, to:


I am writing this question due to the fact that I came across a JUG(Java User Group) facebook page. There was a guy in need of a 'junior' java developer. They told me that a junior Java developer is someone who:

Is there any kind of test someone can take (apart from the oracle exams etc...)? Also , are these information valid or partly true?

To which you commented:

my friend you have come to very unhelpful and unpleasant place to post your questions. Programmers stack exchange should be related to ask questions related to programming and skills, but the bullies here are to close your question without a single doubt in their head. They are ruining PSE. You are better off in Java Forums where these bullies cannot close your questions. – Jhilke Dai

Career and education advice is off topic. It is specifically called out as:

  • what language/technology you should learn next, including which technology is better,
  • career advice, salary or compensation,

The off topic message for the question is intended to give the appropriate guidance.

If you feel this is incorrect and that career questions should be allowed, please make meta post that states this and provides a good argument for how they should be handled and lead to valuable content for the site. Note that this has been addressed many times in the past.

I would suggest reading:

A core principle with Stack Exchange is the desire to attract experts that stay and answer questions. Without experts the site will suffer the fate of artificial intelligence.SE or Startups.SE.

To that end it is necessary to down vote and close questions that are not appropriate for the site. Sometimes this is from a lack of information to make it into a good question (there was a lengthy discussion about that in chat the other day - it was begrudgingly acknowledged that without down votes and closed question the question would not have been improved). Other times it is necessary for such to get the person to read the appropriate parts of the help center.

Secondly (and a difficult one to get one's head around) it is not about helping the person asking the question but the next person asking the same question. Questions asking about career paths (a two of my examples) are often very specific to that individual or that company (for the DBA, I've never seen a DBA at two different companies have the same set of responsibilities).

Third, discussions on the main site don't work. It wasn't designed for that. I really suggest reading A Group Is Its Own Worst Enemy (which also points out some of the issues you seem to take issue with) which was mentioned in some of the early podcasts by Jeff as being influential in the design of Stack Overflow.

There are other communities where discussion works (as well as they do). I will point out that even reddit/r/cscareerquestions has a hefty FAQ that is expected to be required reading before asking such a question. Polling and discussion is the raison d'être there. That said, the level of hostility and snark that people have commented finding on reddit (or hacker news) far exceeds our own.

And well, give-me-the-codes is welcomed at eLance and similar freelancing sites.

Can we do better? Probably. However, posting comments about dissatisfaction with P.SE and about 'bullies' is not the way to encourage this process.

You must log in to answer this question.