As any Bart Simpson fan can tell you, “a burp is not an answer.” Neither is idk. If your only response to someone’s plea for help is “I don’t know” (and with an abbreviation no less), then please refrain from chiming in. It’s not only annoying to other people, it could be considered point-gaming, which is in violation of the Community Guidelines. A popular variation of idk occurs when the responder has nothing to contribute and just expresses the wish to know the answer as well. Still useless and still a violation.
Another “non-answer” is a rant that offers no advice or solutions. Let’s say you are going to make fondue tonight, and you’re looking for the best cheese to use. You get: “I hate cheese. Cheese is evil.” That’s really no help at all. Now, “Cheese is disgusting but use Gruyere.” — that’s something you can use.
Is it OK to just answer with a yes or no? Yes. If it makes sense in the context of the question, that is. Of course, it’s better if you can elaborate a little and let others know the reasoning behind your answer.
One last thing — if you discover a violation and “call out” the abusive post or member, you become part of the problem. It may be tempting to leave an insult or “reported”; however, it’s not an answer and it’s against the Community Guidelines. Take the high road on this one—just report it and leave it at that.
Bart Simpson may come up with some smart-alecky answers, but at least they’re answers. The reality is that people come to Yahoo! Answers looking for…well, answers. So please keep that in mind the next time you find your cursor hovering over that big blue button. We’d all really appreciate it.
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