There is a user on this site, who participates in chat, and posts answers and participates in discussions, but based on the speed, frequency, and consistent low quality of the user's comments, I believe the user is using a script to rapidly detect, close, and / or down-vote "poor" questions or duplicates, and has affected the site negatively on a wide scale every day for years now.

For example, I just posted a question:

When trying to learn about proper comment practices, I found a lot of conflicting opinions, and it's obviously a very subjective topic. So I'm not going to ask "Should I comment, or should I not?"

The question I'd like to pose is, for me, as a self taught developer interested in applying for programming jobs in the future, a vital one: Of the two strategies

"Comment the right code in the right way." - (comments where needed)


"Instead of writing comments, write more readable code." - (if you need comments, your code is bad)

are both valid strategies in programming?

If I submit an application with code samples including masterfully written code and no comments, are experienced programmers likely to be familiar with that approach?

I'm not asking "Will the specific guy reading my application like my coding style", obviously no one can guess that, I'm just looking for a general answer as to whether both practices are common, or if my code will be seen as terrible across the board.

And in less than 30 seconds of posting the question I received a down vote and this seemingly automated comment:

Possible duplicate of "Comments are a code smell"

  • Is my question a duplicate of that question? The answer is very clearly no.

  • Is it valid to mark a question as a duplicate of a closed question rather than voting to close? Probably not.

I've experienced this behavior (instant down-vote and either close vote with no explaining comment or improvement suggestion, or poor duplicate claim) from this user consistently across my rare visits to this site over the past few years, and this user's wide scale and poor contribution is the reason I avoid visiting this site, unless I have a question I feel is important and can't find the answer somewhere else.

  • it is easy to remember that the very first question on this site was about writing comments vs readable code, one simply inserts 1 into question id to get to it: http://softwareengineering.stackexchange.com/questions/1. This question has 38 answers covering and bikeshedding this topic to death. And if that's still not enough, there are 30 questions linked to it
    – gnat
    Nov 7, 2016 at 9:05
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    Possible duplicate of Programmers SE has become a site to avoid
    – Doc Brown
    Nov 8, 2016 at 16:03
  • That is an automated comment that the system creates when a user votes to close a question as a duplicate (see the comment above this one for another example).
    – user22815
    Nov 10, 2016 at 5:31
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    The question you asked on the main site is an opinion poll anyway ("primarily opinion-based" close reason), and the wording evokes thoughts of another close reason, "education and career advice." As other commenters have mentioned, this topic has been beaten to death and back again many times. I recommend using the search function.
    – user22815
    Nov 10, 2016 at 5:33


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