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Jul 23, 2014 11:25 PM

"Google it"

I find it so completely rude and snarky when, below a post requesting some bit of info, the first reply is a link to a google search, or the suggestion to visit google.

This may have been a viable option a few years ago but now with search-engine-optimized, nearly identical blogs where they incorporate the phrase "authentic pasta recipe" three times per paragraph, followed by an untested (I assume) recipe written by a nobody, I'm glad to have a resource such as message boards where I can ask others about their experiences. I'm not asking anyone to do the footwork for me, if you don't know the answer, don't reply! If you don't want to contribute, don't reply! Linking to google is just snark, and I can't believe the mods let it happen. Every time I see it on a post, I want to reply pointing out how unnecessarily snarky it is, but it happens a lot, so I'm venting here.
Maybe people ask some really obvious (to YOU) questions. At that point you should just refrain from replying if you're annoyed by the dumb question.
A google search only gets you so far, and it's not good for everything. These boards help us find answers from people whose expertise we know on some level, and we pay it forward by contributing our knowledge to the pool as well.
Am I wrong?
Phew glad I got that off my chest.

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  1. I think you're partially wrong. I don't agree that pointing you toward a specific Google-originated search result is snarky. Rather it seems as if someone is doing some basic Googling to help get you started. If you take that as as insult, so be it.

    Condescendingly saying "Google it!" IS snarky however.

    IMHO concluding that Google is useless is short-sighted and incorrect. I use both boards AND Google searches a lot when I'm looking for information....... And I don't accept he answers from either one as gospel without substantial experience with the source.

    1. Damn. I was hoping this was a thread about not using "google" as a verb anymore. I more of a Bing fellow (now that Jeeves has been dismissed from Ask) - quietly relegated to Rodney Dangerfield status.

      Oh well, I guess I'll just take solace in the fact that I don't have to Xerox stuff anymore.

      9 Replies
      1. re: MGZ

        Yes it shouldn't be used as a verb but as a noun;

        "Hey MGZ I got your google right here!"

        Much better............ :-)

        1. re: jrvedivici

          "Google" is well-established as a verb. Lots of English words serve as either a noun or a verb with the same spelling.

            1. re: c oliver

              You mean, like "light","humor", "joke", "goof", 'spoof", "banter", "kid", "jest", "butt" . . . . even the aforementioned, "Xerox"?

              Dang, jr, all these folks dun learned us some.

          1. re: jrvedivici

            I don't agree. If the term is understood, and it is in common use then IMO there is nothing inherently wrong with using "google" as a verb. Of course, as a noun, it should be capitalized, I think.

            The Brits use the word "beaver" as a verb, as in "the cooks were beavering away in the kitchen" and it has a specific meaning that is easily understood. It is the same as "Googling." English is really dynamic and expressive with a huge vocabulary. Just relax about something like this.

            1. re: sueatmo

              Well, the Brits better study up on their slang before they futz around in an American kitchen, or they may get a kick where the sun don't shine, because on this side of the puddle, the slang definition means something else entirely! '-)

              1. re: sueatmo

                Those Brits and their beavers. Some things never change.

                1. re: genoO

                  So check it out, I googled British Beavering.

                  So I can legitimately say; "I was just Googling a British Beaver"............Sounds so much more salacious than what actually transpired.

          2. I do what I'd consider 2nd tier google searches "for" Hounds all the time.
            Here's one I found (via google).
            Since I'm using my own post as the example, I'm freely opening the door and letting the topic-horse out of the barn. Snark/ attack away.

            ETA: when I put up a link to a google search, it's never a search for then item in question alone. I'll have put stuff in "'s and tried to tailor and limit the results. YMMV


            1. You can Flag this sort of response for us, and we'll take a look.

              1. IMO, part of it is that CH search still lacks a lot. It's not intended to be a Google. What I try to do is Google, give one link to an OP and then say "Google has a ton more info on this." These 'nobodies' that you refer to - at least the ones I link to - can be renowned chefs,cookbook authors and magazines. I would never refer someone to a Google link that I hadn't vetted first. Now once I did ask, when someone was looking for a food itinerary in NorCal, how long it would take to drive from A to B (narrow, winding roads) and was told this and no more - Google is your friend. I guess I should have reported that but I just considered the source and moved on :)

                68 Replies
                1. re: c oliver

                  I always use google to hunt for anything ON ChowHound. Although the CH search blender is cute, there's a reason "to google" is a verb.

                      1. re: Kris in Beijing

                        Me too. Using google to search for 'xyz' works better for me than searching for 'xyz' within chowhound.

                        1. re: Kris in Beijing

                          Actually I do sometimes do this. I don't think google is useless, I just think, "this poster came here for answers from people."
                          Google can be useful but it also links to a lot of blogs written by professional bloggers who are not necessarily food experts, and sometimes that means you get twenty versions of the exact same recipe, buried in a long blog post about how their morning went. SOME are experts, and some of those float to the top of the search.
                          But I do see it differently than before, and I don't see it as intentionally rude, but it's like someone asking me directions and I point to the map in their hand and say "use that. Bye."
                          Maybe he map was a piece of crap, or confusing, so they're asking me, a human with experience.

                          1. re: iheartcooking

                            For me, it's often the case of
                            "What a wonderful question. I'm not sure if I really know enough to give a great answer, so I'm going to go google and see what's out there "

                            Then I'll "curate" the results for the OP.

                            1. re: Kris in Beijing

                              Thanks for giving me another way to look at it!

                              1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                That's very nice of you, it really is. But I do not support facilitating helplessness. Made-up scenario: Somebody makes a joke on some thread about balut. Then someone else asks, "What's balut?" Really? That person couldn't type "balut" into their search engine instead of expecting to be spoonfed the definition? Maybe it's a generational thing; as an old fogey I am used to using a dictionary, atlas, and when I was a kid, the World Book Encyclopedia that I was thrilled to receive as my 6th grade Xmas present. I would love to know if there's a typical age range of people who don't seek info on their own before requesting it from strangers on Chowhound.

                                I LOVE LOVE LOVE, though I am dismayed that it needed to be created in the first place.

                                I agree that the CH search function leaves something to be desired, but I can almost always find a previous reference if I give some thought to my search terms. I appreciate that newbies may not know they can find their answers on previous threads. However, I notice certain user names that are familiar to me as long-term Hounds as the originators of questions on simple topics that they *must* know are subjects that have been addressed before, many times. I *want* to respond, "Asked and answered, many times before. Search this board, you lazy cow!", but know better, so I just don't read/contribute.

                                1. re: greygarious

                                  I find it helps to think charitably about people that ask obvious questions, and assume that instead of asking "what's balut?" and just wanting to know that, they are really asking "what's balut? Do people REALLY eat that? Does it taste good? How is is prepared/presented?" If the only answer I have (or care to give) is to the basic question, I just skip by the post and hope that someone who can/wants to answer all the rest of the question will reply.

                                  1. re: Chris VR

                                    The other factor with the 'What's Balut?' type questions is that different people view Chowhound differently in terms of whether it's just a resource for them, or a place where they have conversations.

                                    If you were talking to a friend in a restaurant, and they mentioned Balut, and you didn't know what it was, you'd say "What's balut?", not run off to find a dictionary and look it up. A lot of people see Chowhound as more conversational, so when someone mentions something they're not familiar with, they view asking them to explain as continuing the friendly conversation, not wasting anyone's time.

                                    1. re: Jacquilynne

                                      This is how I view it, a conversation.

                                      1. re: Jacquilynne

                                        See, that's a big problem. Typing on a computer is NOT conversation. When you can look at a person, see their eyes and expressions, hear the sigh....that is conversation.

                                        1. re: genoO

                                          "Typing on a computer is NOT conversation."

                                          It's not writing either. It is interactive and can be nearly immediate. It's its own amalgamated form of communication. Most folks are just trying to figure out how best to make it work. I'd bet similar reservations existed about telephone conversations too. New "rules" and etiquettes emerge. The ability to better communicate using the device is developed - by both the "speaker" and the "listener".

                                          1. re: MGZ

                                            That's how I see forums, someone throws a thought or question out there and you respond. Sounds like a conversation to me, otherwise you might as well write a blog or use something that gives you your own page.

                                            1. re: MGZ

                                              communicate and conversation are two totally different things. Think about it.

                                              1. re: MGZ

                                                It *would* be a better vehicle for the exchange of ideas if more posters would actually READ the discussions before responding. But no. Time and time again someone will ask a question....I'm making this up but you'll recognize the scenario:
                                                Q: What to do with a bushel of mealy peaches?
                                                Some of the first responses will be suggestions to make sorbet or ice cream, can them, cook them into sauce. Then there will be some recipes for various pies and pastries. Then someone will suggest peach butter. Then someone will propose making fruit leather with them. The OP will have chimed in here and there when an idea appeals to her. After a dozen or two posts, someone else will post: Make ice cream or sorbet.
                                                Then someone else will suggest canning. These people apparently just cruised in and dumped their redundant suggestions, not bothering to read beyond the initial OP, if that (sometimes it's clear they only read the title, or paid no attention to the body of the OP as they read it.)
                                                Such ex cathedra pronouncements are irrelevant. Certainly those who deliver them are not interested in *learning* anything. It's not an exhange, much less a *conversation*, when so many people type but don't read. And there's a high percentage of them.

                                                1. re: greygarious


                                                  I'd be lying, however, if I said I haven't experienced parallels in spoken, face to face discussions.

                                                  1. re: MGZ

                                                    "I'd be lying, however, if I said I haven't experienced parallels in spoken, face to face discussions."

                                                    I just don't understand why all discussions - written, spoken and mimed - can't be perfectly tailored to my individual needs, each and every time? It's almost like other people think that they ought to be able to speak or write as they've always done. Dammit people, it's all about me! Why can't you seem to get that?

                                                    1. re: Servorg

                                                      I'm sorry. I wasn't listening.

                                                      But, you should definitely look into that. You could probably just Google it.

                                                      1. re: MGZ

                                                        It reminds me of an ultimate nightmare of a first date in which the other party goes on about themselves for an hour, without drawing breath. At the end of that exhausting soliloquy they finally take note of you, pause and say "So, enough about me. What do you think of me?"

                                                        1. re: MGZ

                                                          You know what I think would be a vast improvement, is if people made sure idea's or suggestions they are going to make haven't already been brought up a dozen times before. Here let me try to give you an example;

                                                          "I'm thinking of preparing a nice rib eye tonight, any suggestions for cooking methods"

                                                          1st Response;
                                                          " High heat, generous sea salt and pepper each side, 5 mins each side to medium"

                                                          2nd Response;
                                                          " Olive oil and garlic powder rub, salt, pepper, High Heat Sear 2 mins each side, medium heat on grill 10 mins each side for medium"

                                                          3rd-10th Response;
                                                          Various different suggestions

                                                          11th Response
                                                          " Use a coarse salt like sea salt, lightly pepper each side, you want as high temp as your grill can offer and probably 5 mins, flip once, 5 mins again perfect medium"

                                                          and every 3 or 4 responses will repeat something already said.

                                                          Such ex cathedra pronouncements are irrelevant. Certainly those who deliver them are not interested in *learning* anything. It's not an exhange, much less a *conversation*, when so many people type but don't read. And there's a high percentage of them.

                                                          That's just my personal feelings.

                                                          1. re: jrvedivici

                                                            What I see on long threads is the answering of a question that comes up in one of the inevitable "sub threads" that spring up, without realizing that the same reply has been given elsewhere in the thread several time already. That type of ditto reply doesn't bother me at all.

                                                            It's only in those threads that are maybe 10 posts long where someone chimes in with the same suggestion that I tend to do my "eye roll" thing as I read along tsking away like the curmudgeon I am.

                                                            1. re: Servorg

                                                              Often times when responding to a thread that already has 50/100 replies and I don't have the time nor desire to sit here and read everyone I will title my response with;

                                                              "I'm sorry if this has already been brought up"

                                                              1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                Oops, I didn't read far enough. Junior, please don't reply to those.

                                                            2. re: jrvedivici

                                                              I esp. loathe the "I haven't read the replies but...." Then don't effing reply.

                                                      2. re: greygarious

                                                        God, people are such inept assholes, aren't they?

                                                        1. re: linguafood

                                                          I think referring to me as inept was enough. The "asshole" part I think was entirely unnecessary.

                                                          1. re: jrvedivici

                                                            If one is an inept asshole isn't that a positive descriptor?

                                                            1. re: Servorg

                                                              I can see and appreciate at trying to spin this into something positive for me Servorg, and I sincerely appreciate it.

                                                              But apparently C. loathes me and Linqua thinks I'm an inept asshole. Not much more to add to things now......just wait for MGZ to land the last punch for the Jr' knockout. I see now......I see......

                                                              1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                No, no Jr. - this isn't about you, but rather it's a corollary of the "I could care less" school of poorly thought out grammar.

                                                                Being called an inept asshole says that you aren't an asshole, and says a lot about idiocy of the person calling you one.

                                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                                      I would never, ever (even for a minute) believe that you would actually call Jr. an "ept" asshole.

                                                                      Inept asshole means that you knew exactly what you were about (knowing you meant what you said and you said what you meant - "An elephants faithful 100%!).

                                                                      In other words you were telling Jr. he is the farthest thing from an ept which I heartily concur.

                                                                      1. re: Servorg

                                                                        Everyone chill - this sub, I'm sure, will be removed shortly. Some things are just human nature - we can't get mad on an open forum when people do human things. I'm sure I do some (don't point them out b/c my ego is already compromised). I hate the analogy "herding cats" because it is so overused, but......

                                                                    2. re: Servorg

                                                                      yeah it's like saying you're not even any good at being an asshole.

                                                                      1. re: hill food

                                                                        Hahahahaha I love where this has gone. As rudeboy pointed out it will probably be removed but I for one find it rather entertaining.

                                                                        For the record I will wear my title of inept asshole with pride, weather it's a good thing or a bad! Jr has no shame!

                                                                        1. re: jrvedivici

                                                                          Now, now, junior - I didn't say I loathe the PEOPLE who don't read before posting. I loathe those posts. And I could never, ever loathe you. Talk about a favesie :)

                                                        2. re: genoO

                                                          That seems to be your narrow definition. With all the ways to communicate today I find the list much bigger.

                                                      3. re: Chris VR

                                                        >>>" If the only answer I have (or care to give) is to the basic question, I just skip by the post and hope that someone who can/wants to answer all the rest of the question will reply."<<<

                                                        Yup! I agree 100%. Though I do have my moments when I think "Really?"

                                                        1. re: Midlife

                                                          Unless the subject of the thread is about "tipping". I almost always know you'll chime in no matter what:-)

                                                      4. re: greygarious

                                                        Exactly. I would not expect posters to rely upon Google, rather than CH, for posts seeking recipes, cooking ideas, or restaurant recommendations. But I recall a post a few years back where a poster was stymied by an unfamiliar word in a restaurant review that had been published in a local paper, so she asked CH'ers what it meant. Surely it would have taken less time and been more efficient for her to just type that word into a search engine (or looked it up in a hard-cover dictionary, if she owned one).

                                                        1. re: greygarious

                                                          Oh but I think balut is the Perfect example!!!

                                                          If you google (well, when I do; we all know we'll get differing results) the first 2 hits are Wikipedia, then a bunch of articles about "going too far."
                                                          That's not very Chow-Positive (or whatever PC chow term is better).

                                                          If someone asked here, I would hope they'd get a foodie answer.

                                                          1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                            yeah, one can look up what Balut is, but that's not going to describe the full experience (smell, taste, appearance, smell) that should be noted before diving in.

                                                          2. re: greygarious

                                                            Well, there's an example of your point, Grey. I had to visit to find out what it was.

                                                            1. re: DuffyH

                                                              So did I. Can anyone explain how it's different from Google itself?

                                                              1. re: Midlife

                                                                the site creates a weblink for the word you google. You post the link and when that person clicks the link what appears to be google pops up, it auto types the word and then gives you the snarky message "was that so hard?" and brings you to google itself.

                                                                It's so passive aggressive. People who use it aren't brave enough to say it themselves so they let a website do it for them.

                                                                Try it, you'll see what I mean. Follow this link


                                                                1. re: foodieX2

                                                                  Huh. Without a search word it looks almost like standard Google screen. I guess I'm not snarky enough. ;o)

                                                                    1. re: babette feasts

                                                                      To each his own. I find your link *more* insulting, and at least does give you actual search results.

                                                                      1. re: greygarious

                                                                        So do I - I meant that let me google that for you may be snarky, but much nicer than telling people to just fucking google it (which can be tempting).

                                                                  1. re: Midlife

                                                                    Ha! I was going to ask what the difference was between google and lmgtfy but I figured I would google it. And I quickly found the answer!

                                                                    1. re: Midlife

                                                                      Ha! I was going to ask that very question but I figured I would google it. And I quickly found the answer!

                                                                2. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                  I agree, sort of. Some people what you to write their final essay for a school project, without doing any thinking or research on their own.

                                                                3. re: iheartcooking

                                                                  I think it's pretty certain that people come here for ANSWERS. Though the feeling of community is nurturing, I'm not that sure they really care if the answers come directly from people so long as they come.

                                                                  1. re: iheartcooking

                                                                    I've never had that consequence when people have linked to Google.

                                                                    1. re: iheartcooking

                                                                      I agree that Google (and search engines generally) are less useful than they used to be for all the reasons you have given. I, too, prefer to discuss things here rather than waste my time on general Google searches. BUT - if you want to search WITHIN Chowhound, and just Chowhound, you will find it easier to search on Google with Chowhound as one of your search terms. It's the only way to search within these boards, really. I do this all the time.

                                                                      1. re: ratgirlagogo

                                                                        Note that Google does not index the entire site. There are often discussions or past posts that I want to find that Google cannot, whereas the site search engine locates them. Also the site search engine will open the exact post within a thread where the search terms are mentioned, which I find extremely valuable. Google doesn't do this and one needs to locate the passage on the page.

                                                                        1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                          I've never had any problem finding just what I need and quite easily via Google. Far easier than CH IME.

                                                                          1. re: c oliver

                                                                            I'm happy for you.

                                                                            Just want folks to be aware that if google can't find a topic, that doesn't mean it doesn't exist. There are many topics that are not in google's index and therefore will not appear in a search result, and I run across them regularly.

                                                                            1. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                              I wasn't being snarky. Just lucky I guess. As an example someone recently asked a question about beef stew and I remembered that I had once posted about their specific question. I Googled chowhound c oliver beef stew and there it was. It rarely takes more than that.

                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                My impression is that the Home Cooking board discussions are well-indexed by google. So yes, it is no surprise that if you're looking for something that you posted on that board google will find it. But some of the smaller regional boards are not and google will not find those topics. Again, it happens with regularity on the roads less traveled.

                                                                              2. re: Melanie Wong

                                                                                there is a game called GoogleWhack.

                                                                                less than one search result: you're tops. yet no result you are (uhh well something pointless) but hey you found nothing! I do it only every few months (bonsai only engages so often), yet in 6+ years I've achieved that twice! I AM the Vasco de Gama of nowhere and nothing!

                                                                                1. re: hill food

                                                                                  "...yet no result you are (uhh well something pointless) but hey you found nothing!"

                                                                                  Reminds me of the old joke "The doctors x-rayed my head and found nothing"

                                                                      2. re: c oliver

                                                                        "Google is your friend for questions like that. More important than 'how far' would be 'how many minutes' over the winding roads and mountain passes, if you care to check for driving times when you research your question."

                                                                        "Mea culpa. I was being lazy. Hour and a half. Definitely too far for a dinner but,steve, if your interested in lunch, I can recommend a couple of spots."


                                                                        1. re: c oliver

                                                                          Anyone who tells me Google is my friend is not.

                                                                          1. re: squid kun

                                                                            Well, ya know, we always have to remember that at times the site aims toward the LCD (lowest common denominator). I just try to pity those and let it go.