A user made a comment on an Overwatch question, a game he clearly doesn't play:

Also, this information is freely available, in game, where the player can freely view all hero audios. A clear example of "shows no research".

On this specific question he VTC'd due to list question, but was somehow strangely absent from on this other question:

What are all the friendly and enemy ultimate sounds?

I'm starting to see this all over the site. Somewhat high rep users who haven't played a game, comment on a question making all sorts of stuff up, when it's very clear to people who've played the game how absolutely idiotic they sound. This user on my specific question showed one thing; you can't google everything to answer questions.

Without understanding the game mechanics or playing the game, I think people shouldn't be allowed to answer questions for a specific tag, perhaps even blocking them from making decisions on those specific tags. There's a reason we have tag-experts, but what about tag-idiots, like the person who commented?

Another example: for those of you who have played Overwatch, and have played Lucio, you know that when you crossfade you hear all sorts of music. I asked a Overwatch question a while back about what exactly the music in Lucio's crossfade was, and another user said something along the lines of "since there's no proof it exists I'm voting to close until we get an audio artifact", but it was very clear from those words he never touched the game, nor tried out any aspect of it.

Should we do something specific in these situations about these kinds of people? I'm really frustrated and sick of people who've clearly never played the game their commenting on and blindly saying stuff until they get called out.

  • 12
    Please leave name-calling out of this. We understand that you're frustrated, but that's no call to insult other users. May 28, 2016 at 22:10
  • @murgatroid99 Good point
    – childe
    May 28, 2016 at 22:16
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    I'm assuming you mean this Lucio question, which I've neither voted, nor commented on. Also, I've not hidden the fact that I play the game, and have followed it heavily since its announcement. So please, before you throw blind accusations around, do some research.
    – Niro
    May 28, 2016 at 22:20
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    You voted to close at one point
    – childe
    May 28, 2016 at 22:26
  • 5
    Voting to close is a separate thing.
    – GnomeSlice
    May 28, 2016 at 22:29
  • Regardless if it's different, he voted to close because of a flawed assumption
    – childe
    May 28, 2016 at 22:40
  • 2
    Who says it's flawed? It's just a reason you disagree with.
    – Frank
    May 28, 2016 at 23:04
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    I didn't vote because of a flawed assumption. I voted because you posted an "Identify this" without any sort of artifact to go with it. I then removed the vote when you followed the rules and added a video.
    – Niro
    May 28, 2016 at 23:19
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    "since there's no proof it exists I'm voting to close until we get an audio artifact" - I find I have to argue against this point all the time. Unless it's a Game Identification we don't require an artifact. If said music didn't exist in your Lucio example an answer stating "The music doesn't exist get your ears checked" would be perfectly valid. Which is the point on 'Answerability' I made on my recent meta/rant
    – Robotnik Mod
    May 29, 2016 at 0:19
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    @Robotnik I disagree. If you state the existence of an item, the onus is on you to provide something to attest that fact. Saying something doesn't exist, as your example, is an absolutely terrible answer.
    – Frank
    May 29, 2016 at 1:36
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    But anyone who's played the game already knows it exists. This isn't something recalled from memory, this is something that exists in game. Are you suggesting anytime someone asks a question that we now ask them to prove that what they're asking for exists? "Can you prove that the AK47 exists in CS:GO, because I don't believe it"
    – childe
    May 29, 2016 at 1:40
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    @Frank - Garnering a 'negative' stance answer (or "terrible" as you put it) does not make the question worthy of closure, and certainly not as 'Game Ident missing artifact' when it's very clearly not one. If the question is completely unclear without it, sure, ask for an artifact and/or VTC as unclear. In this case, it was blatantly clear without the artifact what was being asked. We both know each other's stance differs on the answerability metric so let's not have this argument again, it's getting very tiring.
    – Robotnik Mod
    May 29, 2016 at 1:50
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    @Robotnik So why do you keep arguing it, then? We differ. That's fine. But I'm going to continually oppose your stance.
    – Frank
    May 29, 2016 at 2:08
  • @Timelord64 Are you still making up crap? Do you even know what commendation voice lines are? Do you even know how they are triggered? Do you even know the basic difference between in-game voice lines and commendations? Your answers were all "I googled this and found: x, y, z", nobody else bothered to answer so I accepted your answers.
    – childe
    May 29, 2016 at 4:14
  • @Timelord64 You have to be trolling at this point, because you continue to make up stuff to fit your own definition. The commendation is the post results screen, not the highlight intro for play of the game, and nothing in the commendation voice can be customized, for the entirety of both closed and open BETA. NO one has ever had the ability to choose the commendation quote in any release of Overwatch, so you continually denying and calling it wrong is I guess your way of being delusional
    – childe
    May 29, 2016 at 5:47

3 Answers 3


There is absolutely a kernel of truth in what you say. I have expressed this already in this discussion, but consider for a moment this:

  • What makes Stack Exchange unique is its crowd sourced moderation
  • Your ability to moderate the website comes from the reputation that you accrued
  • You gain reputation by asking and answering questions in one specific Stack Exchange vertical
  • There are a few ways where your reputation in one site affects what you can do in other sites
    • When you hit 200 reputation in any one website, you gain 100 reputation everywhere. That's enough to vote up and comment, but not to vote down.
    • Chat privileges on chat.SE are based on the sum of your reputation points across the network
    • That is it

ChrisF, who has been a moderator in 5 different websites, isn't automatically trusted to the system to vote to close here. He can vote to close, but only because he's got 8k reputation and he's earned it.

Similarly, Jon Skeet's 869k reputation points do him little good on Arqade. If he signed up now, he'd have 101 repuation points, same as everyone else, and the system would trust him just as much.

Why is it that people who are clearly so well in-tune with network policies, site policies, or how to do Q&A properly, are so little trusted across websites? The only way to get a diamond across all SE sites is to be an employee, isn't that strange?

Well, no, that's not strange. Jon Skeet's written the book about C#, and timezones, and many other things, but that doesn't translate into knowledge about videogames. He is just not trusted on this subject matter. So he doesn't get to vote.

But you, oh reader, you probably are trusted on the subject matter. What does this trust mean? Basically it says, "since I know that you're sorta knowledgeable about videogames, I'm going to let you make some moderation calls." The whole grant of trust is based on the assumption that you generally can understand what the hell it means to ward the jungle so mid can't gank the carry.

So the implication here is that if you don't actually know what the post is about, even if the site gives you the buttons, you should not use those buttons.

You are not expected to be able to make a call, whether it is an upvote, or a downvote, or a close vote, or whatever, on every single question on the website — this is why moderation is outsourced in the first place.

We would simply identify people who have such an ability and make them moderators and that would perfectly cover all of our moderationery needs forever.

But that's not how we roll. Moderators are elected because we as a community especially trust them to both refrain from making a call when they don't have a clue and do enough research and thinking to make a call even when the rest of the community doesn't have a clue. We don't just touch very few questions on the website because of fear of the next "a mod closed it so heres vote to reopen lol" comments some people have been enjoying littering the site with.

And we ask our community to try and exercise the same amount of restraint. If you don't know what a question is about, think if it is really up to you to cast a vote to close, and if you cannot trust the rest of the community to make a more informed decision than you would.

The system trusts you, why can't you trust the system?

This is one of those things that we can't and won't enforce. We won't ask people to give up proof of ownership of a game. It is perfectly acceptable to answer a question based on your independent research, even if it's just some google searching or some youtube videos. This post is entirely about the moderation side of things. It is up to those who own the game to see if the answer is actually correct, for example.

We trust the system that most of the time the correct decision will be reached by the community at large, and that when this fails to happen, we will be alerted through flags (and chat, and whatever else). And if you're found to be abusing the trust that the system affords you, we may have to take action. :)

  • 4
    How is it that 90% of the time you are completely incomprehensible in chat, but your meta posts are so well written?
    – Dragonrage Mod
    May 29, 2016 at 18:14
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    If Jon Skeet signed up here he'd only have 101 rep for about 10 minutes. One answer in and he'd be right back at 869k rep. This is due to an exception to the rep cap rule: if(Username != "Jon Skeet") rep.limit = 200; :P
    – Robotnik Mod
    May 30, 2016 at 0:29

Should we do something about these kinds of people? I'm really frustrated and sick of people who've clearly never played the game their commenting on and blindly saying shit until they get called out.

Other than politely leaving a comment about the issue, I don't think we should do anything about "these kinds of people." It seems quite likely that users can make comments like the one you cited because they misunderstood the question being asked, and I think we should assume good faith on the commenters part and correct the misunderstanding rather than try to insult and lambast them.

Besides, how exactly do you propose to screen users based on the games they've played? That seems rather unworkable to me.

A polite comment or, in some particularly egregious cases, flagging the offending comment, is all I think needs to be done in cases like these.


I agree that it is frustrating dealing with close votes from members who haven't played the game. You get all kind of close reasons with a justification comment appended with "...but I haven't played the game". The only thing you can really do about it is to post here. I'm sure there are plenty of other meta posts that discuss the same problem. For example,

People are closing my question because they don't understand it - what should I do?

I believe that we could reduce these kinds of problems by lowering the criteria for gold tag badges. At the moment we have 3 people on the site with a gold tag badge, and these are all in :


To get a gold tag badge you need to:

Earn at least 1000 total score for at least 200 non-community wiki answers in the tag

It is rare to even see a silver tag badge:


Earn at least 400 total score for at least 80 non-community wiki answers in the tag

I believe a gold tag badge allows your vote to count as x3. This can help get questions/answers for such tags opened/closed quicker without pulling in 5 members who may not necessarily have played the game (or more importantly, without expertise in the tag).

What I propose is that we lower the tag badge criteria for this site. With these greater voting powers for gold tag badges people can reverse wrong votes quicker (as well as make correct votes in the first place).

  • "I believe a gold tag badge allows your vote to count as x3", actually, a gold tag badge user can single-handedly open/close a question as a duplicate. Other than that, it's just counted as a single vote as normal.
    – antimo
    Feb 21, 2018 at 14:16

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