As per the following feedback (What is the proper procedure for replacing rusted toilet anchor bolts?) it would appear that my question was already answered elsewhere online and I shouldn't have asked it here since the site is reserved for more difficult/obscure questions that have less of an online presence. As per the member feedback "questions that can be easily answered by searching the internet should not be posted."

I didn't see this topic mentioned in the help center page (https://diy.stackexchange.com/help/dont-ask) but perhaps I overlooked it. Can someone please clarify what the site stance is for things like this? I want to make sure that future posts adhere to the site policy.


2 Answers 2


There is no problem with the question you asked. In fact, I think the entire goal of StackExchange is to be the place to go to have your questions answered. The only time you shouldn't ask a question, is when that question has already been asked on StackExchange. Even then, it might be worth asking if it's slightly different than the original.

  • After reading your reply, I understand that my comment re @MikeB's post was inappropriate, and have deleted it. Unfortunately, I was unable to reverse my -1 post for MikeB, and for another poster's answer. I've checked but have not been able to find any way to reverse the two -1's I posted. If you can help me with this it will be appreciated.
    – getterdun
    Mar 4, 2014 at 13:00
  • @getterdun You should now be able to undo the negative vote on the question linked above. I'm not sure what the other post was, so I can't do anything about that one as of now.
    – Tester101
    Mar 4, 2014 at 13:10
  • Thanks. The other poster changed their post so I was able to up vote it too.
    – getterdun
    Mar 5, 2014 at 0:14
  • If your question is 'slightly different' then best practice it seems would be to reference the original question, but describe the difference. Then you point people to the general answer, and explain a new angle on the topic.
    – Bryce
    Mar 10, 2014 at 18:54

IMO asking the question isn't a problem. What I did find objectionable in that Q&A is how some people decided to include images from pages on other sites that also answered the question.

If they borrowed the photo from there how do we know they didn't borrow the answers as well?

  • 1
    My apologies on the inclusion of the image that was eventually deleted by a Moderator. I looked for pictures that best illustrated that would help depict the conditions, not aware that I was using a protected picture. There must be a way to tell. I was googling images of "toilet flanges" and chose the thumbnails that suited, not going to the website itself that contained it. The answer was from my personal experiences, as all my answers are from my 42 years in the SFH construction trade.
    – Jack
    Mar 6, 2014 at 13:09
  • @Jack it wasn't just your answer. There was another answer on that thread that pulled a photo from another site that had an answer to the same question. Mar 6, 2014 at 14:37
  • @OrganicLawnDIY When you do a Google image search, it's not likely (at least with most folks) you'll visit the site you're snatching the image from. Also, "borrowing" answers from other sites is a common theme in the StackExchange network (and all across the internet for that matter). When you can stop folks from reposting others information on the internet, you'll have successfully killed Twitter, Facebook, other social media and the internet itself.
    – Tester101
    Mar 10, 2014 at 17:06
  • 1
    @Tester101 the problem isn't sharing information from other sites. The problem is taking that information and using it as your own. Do you want Stack exchange to be a site where people can ask other people questions because they know how to do internet searches and how to CTRL-C/CTRL-V other people's intellectual property without giving them credit or do you want a site where people come to ask questions from people who clearly have actual experience? Mar 10, 2014 at 17:39
  • See also meta.diy.stackexchange.com/questions/941/…
    – Bryce
    Mar 10, 2014 at 18:54
  • @OrganicLawnDIY I don't care where the information comes from, I only care that it's correct. 85% of questions on the site can be answered by simply reading the manual. I didn't write the manual, so is it wrong for me to read it and share what I learned?
    – Tester101
    Mar 11, 2014 at 12:13
  • en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Straw_man Mar 11, 2014 at 13:21

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