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Re: After dist-upgrade no Icewm - Solved

Apparently, _Chris Metzler_, on 05/07/04 15:36,typed:
On Thu, 06 May 2004 16:25:31 -0400
"H. S." <greatexcalibur@yahoo.com> wrote:

How true! I always wondered what was so helpful in a one liner "RTFM" in
the replies that so many are proud to post. Some even consider it their sacred duty to do so. "do your homework"!! Now, that is helpful! Why to bother suggesting that anyway.

Uh, because it shows basic respect to the volunteers who answer your
question to first try and solve it yourself, before asking the question?

If you don't have any concrete suggestions on how to debug the problem, or where to start, don't post!

It's usually the case when someone says "RTFM" or "STFW" that they're very
aware that the answer is easily found that way.  Often they themselves
have just verified this, and are looking at the needed information as they
type that response.

You are missing the point that a newbie probably had no idea where to look for the information that would solve the problem he doesn't now to describe in formal terms. So here is a newbie, faces a problem, has no Linux/Unix vocabulary yet, doesn't know *what* the problem is but that there *is* a problem. The reader of the post requesting for help, on the other hand, assumed a lazy person is asking for easy help without doing the homework -- usually erroneous, always hasty and certainly presumptuous conclusion. Of course you don't want to help the person in a way which may seem helpful in short term but would actually be harmful in the long run, so why not just give a few pointers "look for <buzz word> to do <Linux Jargon>, which is what you are trying to do. Search www.google.com, try it and see what happens and ask for help if you still don't understand." I mean, what is wrong with this kind of response? You came out courteous, didn't sound rude and pompous and helped a guy learn how to find information and didn't try to bash him/her away from asking innocent questions, which were maybe being asked just to know where to start? On the other hand, "RTFM" is best used by not mentioning at all -- assuming that you can know from the post if the person is a newbie or not (if you can't guess that with any certainty, then we have bigger problems :)

Another response, specific to Debian lists, is "He is a newbie!? Debian is not for newbies. Go read some books." Which *really* translates to something like "You should have had prior experience. Go try some other Distro." Doesn't help Debian much now, does it?


(Remove all underscores,_if any_, from my email address to get the correct one. Apologies for the inconvenience, but this is to reduce spam.)

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