1

OK, it seems that my question is getting an increasing number of downvotes with precious little explanations.

Password or passphrase strength tester

Why wouldn't this question be fit for Software Recommendations? Is it off-topic? Is it not clear? Does it duplicate other questions? Is it against site policies? Something else?

4

Self-answered questions are judged a bit harder here than your average question, and rightly so. While we don't discourage self-answering it is far too open to abuse for the end goal of reputation gain, so we measure potential cases to a slightly stricter standard.

Even when easy reputation is not the goal, far too often in knowing the answer ahead of time the question will end up a bit on the lazy side, and questions like this are often borderline for being flagged as "unclear what you are asking".

If you hadn't added the platform in when prompted I definitely would have flagged it as unclear, and even now I think it barely makes the grade, and I assume others are thinking the same thing as reflected by the downvotes.

The best questions here provide as much detail as possible: a list of features (sometimes broken up into absolute requirements, nice-to-have features and do-not-want features), a use-case statement, software you have already tried but just doesn't do what you need etc.

Based on this, self-answered questions should at least aim to be a good question, if not a great question. A few extra minutes on your part can turn a borderline unclear question into a worthwhile question, and can turn something that will net you negative rep (and maybe close votes) into a question (and answer) worth upvoting.

2
  • "Based on this, self-answered questions should at least aim to be a good question, if not a great question. A few extra minutes on your part can turn a borderline unclear question into a worthwhile question" Exactly so! Any why hasn't the community informed me of what was missing or how it could be improved. My grievance is with this "shoot first, no questions asked or explanations provided" due process, which isn't the first time I encounter on SE. If I can do a better job, please direct me (as proof I instantaneously reacted to your feedback). But all that downvoters do is casting stones..
    – landroni
    Nov 7 '14 at 17:53
  • "Self-answered questions are judged a bit harder here than your average question, and rightly so. While we don't discourage self-answering it is far too open to abuse for the end goal of reputation gain, so we measure potential cases to a slightly stricter standard." I understand your reasoning, but I don't subscribe to it. If a question and an answer is on-topic, well formulated, useful, it's ball. Full stop. All that users ever do on SE is to gain rep, and if the site and users deem that acknowledgement is due, then it's due since it's the rules. Don't penalize users for the site's rules...
    – landroni
    Nov 7 '14 at 17:58
0

I see two reasons to downvote this question:

  • You have pretty much no requirements, only the fundamental ones — the nature of the program, the platform to run it on, and that it be open source. What makes your question specific? What gives it value over a web search for “password strength tester”? What prior research have you done on the topic — at least doing the web search and seeing what types of results come out?
  • You seem to be under the delusion that password strength checkers actually exist. That's wrong: it is impossible to check the strength of a password, only the strength of a password generation method. Not knowing that is excusable, though; there are a lot of programs out there that pretend to be password strength checkers (but that don't do it well enough to be genuinely useful).

Your answer probably didn't help. What makes this particular product better than the other ones out there?

11
  • (1) "What gives it value over a web search for “password strength tester”?" I've never heard this being used as an argument on a SE question. As long as a question fits the scope, it is ball, and never mind what Google, Wikipedia or Facebook think on the topic. BUT if the question wasn't specific enough, then why wasn't this explained in the comments? I think this points less to the question not being up to standard, but more to the community not working as intended. If a question isn't in that SE sweet spot, experienced users explain how it can be improved, instead of simply casting stones...
    – landroni
    Nov 7 '14 at 17:43
  • 1
    (2) "You seem to be under the delusion that password strength checkers actually exist." This is actually a reason for why the question is good and relevant. Google won't tell you that password strength testers are less useful than what people think, no matter how many hits you get! Someone in the know could provide a solution + the reasons why generally these solutions are suboptimal. In any case, this argument has no bearing on the question being on-topic for the site...
    – landroni
    Nov 7 '14 at 17:46
  • And (3) it really is the first time on SE network that I see sharing knowledge by providing your own answer being actively discouraged and raising spamming flags under a "shoot first, no questions asked or explanations provided" due process. If SR is trying to build a community, way to encourage users to contribute... with either questions or answers. IF it was the answer that raised spam suspicions, why is it the question that gets downvoted but not the answer? This argument doesn't stick with me...
    – landroni
    Nov 7 '14 at 17:48
  • @landroni (1) “This question lacks research effort” is an explicit reason to downvote. The very first comment raises this point. (2) Your question is based on a false premise, and people sometimes downvote for that reason. (3) Sharing knowledge is not discouraged, but on this site we are especially prone to spam; an answer that recommends a product without explaining why looks like a shill, which tends to cast the question into doubt as well. (4) In fine, each voter has their own reasons for voting; I can only try to guess. Nov 8 '14 at 14:42
  • Thanks for the points. (1) If that was the issue, I should've been pointed this in the comments by downvoters. Otherwise it's simply throwing stones at those unaware... (2) Ditto, why doesn't the community point it out first? (3) I can understand that, but it doesn't explain why the question gets downvoted but not the answer. Logically it is the answer that would be the spam, isn't it? This said, I was under the... illusion that providing an own answer was proof of "research effort", and that the answer explained why it was good: open-source, can be used off-line and displays entropy
    – landroni
    Nov 8 '14 at 18:04
  • @landroni Given that lack of research is the prime reason for downvoting a question, it's pretty common not to point it out when downvoting. Nov 8 '14 at 18:07
  • It really shouldn't be! And definitely shouldn't be excused, or encouraged. What is lack of research on this SE could be well-phrased question on a different SE site. For exp, on Cross Validated the community specifically encourages very basic questions, that would yield millions of Google hits, which otherwise could be deemed as "lack of research". How can a user novice to these lands know what this specific site's moderators and high-rep users really expect? Again, my grievance is with this "shoot first, no questions asked or explanations provided" policy. Definitely not "be nice".
    – landroni
    Nov 8 '14 at 18:12
  • @landroni There is nothing “not nice” about downvoting. You were not “shot”, and you were provided explanations and recommendations. Nov 8 '14 at 18:16
  • 1
    "There is nothing “not nice” about downvoting." It is very "not nice" to get serial downvoting without a shred of explanation. The explanations and recommendations were extorted only because I cried wolf. This is NOT how it should be. If there is any shred of confusion, please check the new “Be Nice” Policy (“Code of Conduct”): "Be welcoming, be patient, and assume good intentions. Don't expect new users to know all the rules — they don't."
    – landroni
    Nov 8 '14 at 18:23
  • @landroni "It really shouldn't be!" Well, everybody here is human. Assessing the many questions here that do not show research I can surely understand people no longer taking the time to comment. I also sometimes think "I'm not going to say this again", but then I just skip the question.
    – user416
    Feb 25 '15 at 12:13
  • 1
    @JanDoggen everybody here is human Absolutely. I have no issue with that: we're all human, and things slip through the cracks. My problem is that this isn't a simple aberration, but something seemingly systematic. I've lost count of how many downvotes went into this question, and there still isn't one single useful comment explaining what is wrong with the question and how it could be improved. And more worryingly, moderators seem to wholeheartedly endorse this. If the community doesn't pain tot educate newcomers of what is expected of them, such incidents are vexing, as not nice...
    – landroni
    Feb 25 '15 at 13:45
-1

I suggest this as a possibility:

The fact that you answered your own question almost immediately after asking it looks very much like spam and not a genuine question.

2
  • 2
    Oh, I most strongly disagree with such a reason. The SE specifically encourages sharing knowledge. I had at least one useful answer and wanted to share it, but was hoping for others to suggest good or better solutions. And if anyone was under the illusion that this would be spam, they should simply have checked my track record in the SE network (for instance I'm "trusted" user in Ask Ubuntu) and if the mods were still doubtful they could have contacted me directly. But why all the downvotes? As long as both the question is on-topic, and the answer...
    – landroni
    Nov 6 '14 at 9:17
  • 1
    Moreover, if the issue at hand were indeed a suspicion of spam, why is it that the question gets downvoted but not the answer? If it were spam, it's the answer that would logically be the spam, isn't it? Personally I don't quite buy this reason...
    – landroni
    Nov 6 '14 at 9:24

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