On StackOverflow, lmgtfy.com is banned by a word filter, because it's insulting and because it's not in keeping with the goals of the site which is to be a encyclopedia of sorts of answers to common and uncommon questions. Someone decided to post an lmgtfy.com link as an answer to a question here on programmers.stackexchange.com. Should the same word filter be installed here too?

  • 7
    If there's one site in SE where LMGTFY might be appropriate, Programmers would be it...
    – Shog9
    Jan 10, 2011 at 22:08
  • Where's the down-vote comment? :)
    – Maniero
    Jan 10, 2011 at 23:15
  • @Mr Crt: Why would Programmers be the site?
    – Ken Bloom
    Jan 11, 2011 at 19:28
  • 4
    @Ken: this site is targeted at "subjective discussions"... Questions that can be effectively answered via a Google search (that is to say, by a result of a Google search, not by the aggregate results of a search) are arguably off-topic. Contrast with SO's "no question too easy" mantra.
    – Shog9
    Jan 11, 2011 at 21:48
  • 1
    @Mr. CRT, so we should close them or migrate them to StackOverflow.
    – Ken Bloom
    Jan 12, 2011 at 1:47
  • @Ken: the latter requires moderator intervention. The former doesn't teach the author anything.
    – Shog9
    Jan 12, 2011 at 1:48
  • 1
    @Mr. CRT -- nevertheless, that's what these functions are for. You can't give up on properly moderating the site because it's too hard, or because you feel sorry for the person asking. They can easily go to StackOverflow and ask the question. Even so, we still shouldn't allow LMGTFY answers on such questions because it's insulting. If you're going to have pity on the guy who posted on the wrong site, have pity all the way and give a proper answer.
    – Ken Bloom
    Jan 12, 2011 at 1:51
  • 1
    What's LMGTFY? - Mar 30, 2011 at 23:10
  • @muntoo well played.
    – TygerKrash
    Oct 6, 2011 at 14:46
  • Why not put it in the comments? LMGTFY should be in the comments.
    – user4951
    Sep 6, 2012 at 7:39

5 Answers 5


OK, I added this to the blacklist for programmers.

  • 2
    Gasp! I demand freedom! I deman- BANNED. Mar 30, 2011 at 23:05

My feeling is that if they did away with it on SO, then that should be the rule for us and all of the other SE sites. There's no value added to an answer from there.

  • 2
    Agree, lmgtfy is degoratory (where is the dictionary for bad spellers?) in a snide way.
    – user1249
    Jan 15, 2011 at 11:47
  • 2
    @Thor: Not to completely destroy the purpose of this question, but: lmgtfy.com/?q=degoratory
    – Hello71
    Feb 7, 2011 at 3:22

No, it shouldn't be banned. In fact it's a good hint that the question be closed.

If a question provokes a [working] LMGTFY answer then it is a poor question.

You say it's insulting to get that kind of response. But don't you think it might also be insulting to folks here to see you didn't bother to google first, then you didn't bother to put some effort into your question and then you will likely not bother to accept an answer?

BTW, did you bother to check if there are discussions already of this matter?


  • 1
    Why not just downvote the question? Or vote to close it? What's the value added by including an LMGTFY answer?
    – Walter
    Jan 11, 2011 at 18:48
  • 6
    @Walter: teaching tool. Give a man a fire, he'll be warm for a day...
    – Shog9
    Jan 11, 2011 at 18:56
  • 4
    ....Throw a man into a fire, he probably won't visit your house again.
    – Zoot
    Jan 11, 2011 at 20:54
  • 2
    @Zoot : ... at least not without flame-retardant underwear.
    – Will
    Jan 12, 2011 at 15:11
  • 7
    @Mr. Crt, ... set the man on fire, he'll be warm for the rest of his life.
    – user1249
    Jan 15, 2011 at 11:48
  • @Thorbjørn However short that may be. >:) Mar 30, 2011 at 23:08


Maybe you can find your answer here.

Hmm... Doesn't seem to be banned. Strange. I'm looking into it.

No, LMGTFY links are not banned on Programmers-SE. Each site has a unique black list and it has not been added to Programmers-SE. The [feature-request] should be sufficient to raise the issue. Vote it up if you want it implemented or raise on meta.Stackoverflow, if you feel it should be a network-wide feature.


The technical aspect of the ban (blacklisting lmgtfy.com links in posts) might not be active, but it's my understanding the practice effectively is banned for all the reasons pointed out in the original Ban lmgtfy (let me google that for you) links question on Meta Stack Overflow.

There isn't a context in which they are helpful or constructive on a site where one of the main sections in the FAQ is Be Nice. If you see it being used, I suggest flagging it for moderator review.

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