I'm writing in regards to a recent post and specifically the two comments from Luciano and Vincent as well as Luciano's response to my comment (the response is undocumented because Ryan deleted it). Luciano's and Vincent's original comments can be found below, however I wasn't able to take a screen shot of Luciano's response to my comment because it was deleted, but I will give the gist from memory as recommended by Ryan. enter image description here

There are two main issues I would like to get input on:

  1. I think the question is legitimate. If I have a question about Git or Sublime I ask it in the programming section because they are tools for programming, in a similar way I think it makes sense that if I have a question about Illustrator I would ask it in the graphic design section because it is a tool for graphic design. Further, despite searching through the documentation for Illustrator there is no mention about whether or not you can use a shortcut to hide/unhide/change the visibility of a layer, it would make sense for a shortcut to exist given there are keyboard shortcuts to create and delete layers. Also there is a post, in the Graphic Design section asking about shortcuts in Photoshop (it makes sense that an experienced member like Carl Edwards would ask about shortcuts in photoshop in the graphic design section because photoshop is a tool that graphic designers use...kind of like illustrator), interestingly the question is

"Similar to Illustrator, is there something like CMD + 3 that would let me hide selected layers?"

which would probably encourage any reasonable person new to illustrator and searching for a way to toggle the visibility of layers on/off to 1) Try that keyboard shortcut in Illustrator (it doesn't work) 2) continue to believe that it is possible to toggle the visibility of layers on/off and think they must be missing something and 3) ask a question about it.

  1. More importantly. I think both Luciano's and Vincent's comments are rude, degrading, and generally foster a worst environment for the developer community. Which is directly at odds with what SE is all about. When I responded to them both and drew attention to their comments Luciano deleted his original comment and responded by saying that he/she was "just suggesting that the question might be off-topic" and he/she failed to see how his/her comment was rude and then courteously directed my attention to the section of SE explaining that comments are for constructive criticism and discussion of the minor details about the original question. As stated in my original response I didn't think it was rude to suggest that my question was off topic, I am new to the Graphic Design section and I need to learn about what is on/off topic and one way is by getting feedback from people. However, I don't think the comment

"I was actually hoping this question would be closed as off-topic, that's why I didn't bother" - Luciano

is an example of "just suggesting that the question might be off-topic" I think it's an example of a comment that is not inline with SE TOS because it is not "treat[ing] our service and community with respect" because it is not a kind and respectful comment, instead it is disrespectful and potentially hurtful, I think the same can be said for Vincent's comment:

Apparently, there is a demand for answers to questions like these. shrug - Vincent

I think this comment is disrespectful and potentially hurtful because it is probably sarcastic and treats the question in a dismissive way, essentially suggesting the question is not worth anyone's time.

I'm familiar with the culture of Stack Exchange where experienced members become too burdened to answer repeated questions and decide to start telling people to RTFM or send gifs of typing the question into google. It makes sense that a member, especially a moderator, would become frustrated by seeing the same questions repeated. However, I think if a question has been asked many times then simply linking to the answer or closing the topic is the kind way to go, the fact that some people choose to belittle the OP is a bummer because it creates a mean-spirited environment for people who are new to a field of study, like graphic design for example, and generally trying to have fun and learn new things. But, I don't believe this question falls into the category of an "age old question that could have just been answered with google or by searching the forums" because of the reasons given above, and, I think it deserved a respectful response in the same way that this similar question by a more experienced member received a respectful response.

I'm currently unable to flag their comments because between Luciano and the moderators the comments I'm discussing have been hidden. Further, the user that made one of the comments is a moderator. I would appreciate 1) If someone from Stack Exchange commented in this specific post and pointed out that the member Luciano and Vincent are not inline with the Terms of Service because they are not " treat[ing] our service and community with respect". Further I would like some form of action taken against Vincent because he/she is breaking his/her agreement as a moderator by choosing to make comments that don't treat other members with respect.

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts.


6 Answers 6


Bit of a storm in a teacup here. I get where you're coming from; those comments were slightly rude in the sense of belittling your question.

It was worth raising the issue but probably not with the vehemence with which you've done so here.

I think it would've been more useful to address it in chat first directly with Vincent and if that went badly, which I doubt it would've, then raise it here.

A few points for you:

  • You could've asked the question better.
  • You should've attempted to elaborate on your question to improve it after receiving negative feedback, even if you felt it was rude. Even after improving you could've still addressed the rudeness.
  • You could've addressed the issue informally in chat first.
  • You shouldn't have let your emotions get the better of you in this post.

A single point for Luciano and Vincent:

  • It wasn't nice or friendly to belittle the question. You should've remained neutral and explained the issues with the question in a friendly manner.
  • One note: he didn't have enough rep to join chat at the start. He got enough rep to post in meta by editing old posts. Helpful post! Commented May 29, 2016 at 22:33
  • Fair enough. Perhaps, as unlikely as it may be that a new user will know they can, the option in that case would be to ask Vincent if they can discuss it privately with him. Thanks, took a shot at defusing and concluding the situation.
    – Dom
    Commented May 29, 2016 at 23:03

To be honest, I think the only one lacking any respect in this is you.

  1. It does not seem you have read our guidelines before posting your question. Otherwise you would've known that you at least need to show some effort or a bit of background. You obviously have researched the issue, but don't include anything of that in your question. So to us, it just seems lazy. (On a sidenote, starting questions with I need... always makes them seem lazy.)

  2. Also on the topic of guidelines, they specifically state that this site is not for software support. Hotkeys are a software issue, not a graphic design issue. That said, we will do our best to answer a well-researched, friendly, in-depth question that can benefit the community as a whole.

  3. About the legitimacy of the question. It's not on topic as defined in help, easy as that. When someone tells you they think it's off-topic, what you could do is edit your question to show them why. That's how it works. I don't see that in your initial response, all I see is an "It is too a legitimate question!"

  4. You are offended by what is basically a conversation between two long-time members. I have no problem with that. What I do have a problem with is how you respond to that.

    How you could've responded:

    • You can give objective reasons as to why you think the question is on-topic and edit your question to include them.
    • You can ask for help if you are unsure what to do.
    • You can point out that you think their comments aren't constructive.
    • You can point out that their comments might be perceived as hurtful.
    • You can point out that you are offended by their comments.

      How you responded:
    • No objective reasons or arguments for on-topicness, only an "It is too!"
    • You don't ask for help. Instead you turn the tables and start to be sarcastic too. While understandable, it doesn't help anyone.
    • You state that you would've appreciated answers with links and extra information, while your question isn't even 24 hours old.
    • Then you write a foot-long rage on Meta. First you give all the arguments you should've given in your original question. Then you start shouting about Terms of Service and start calling for outside intervention and "action against a moderator".
  5. That last one is where you really go way too far in my opinion. I can understand you were hurt or offended by the comments or that you think they were inappropriate. But I cannot understand why you deem it necessary to demand action against a long-time respected member of a community you know nothing about.

  6. The agreement as a moderator explicitly states the following: "I acknowledge and agree that I am an independent volunteer moderator to Stack Overflow and I am not an employee, agent or representative of Stack Exchange Inc." The main operative here being volunteer. People like @Vincent spend a lot of their free time and energy on communities like this one. They do their best. Yet they're just people, like you and me, and sometimes they're fallible. Your beloved TOS also states the following: "We created [SE] to give everyone a chance to be recognized by their peers: recognized for their knowledge, their passion, and their willingness to help others get better at the things they are passionate about." That's exactly what I see @Vincent and other members of this community do every single day. You just barge in, demand attention and answers to your 'pressing matters' and are gone again when you've taken what you needed. The day I see you contributing as much time, energy and devotion to building the community instead of tearing it down is the day I will show you the same level of respect as @Vincent and @Luciano.


I'm not going to try and address your first part because it's a huge topic and I'm tired of debating what our community should do :)

As for your second part regarding rudeness, I don't see the rudeness that you see in Luciano's comments that you show in the question (I can't say as to any removed comments). They are not directed at you at all, but rather talking about the on topic-ness of the question being asked.

I can see your claims somewhat in Vincent's second comment because it is loaded, implying that the people are wrong and that the question is wrong. It does not focus on the on topic-ness of the question. However, I don't believe that this was his intention.

  • I hear what you're saying, it sounds like the software vs concept argument is old around here. I don't understand how you can't see how both comments are not rude or at least potentially rude enough that they aren't warranted. I also don't think that the questions not being directed towards me doesn't address the rudeness of the question, in fact I think it makes them more rude.
    – mbigras
    Commented May 26, 2016 at 21:33
  • If you are part of a club that paints posters with felt tip markers and a new member walks up and asks how you take off the cap of the pen and instead of answering that person, you turn to your friend and say that you hope no one answers that new member and you can't imagine why anyone would care in the first place, I think we can agree that would be rude. How is this situation different?
    – mbigras
    Commented May 26, 2016 at 21:34
  • Further, if you make a comment that is not intented to be rude, but it is interpreted as rude, generally the polite response is to either clarify what your intent was or apologize, the generally polite response is not to pretend like you never said anything that crossed the line in the first place. By deleting their comments and instead posting a generic statement about what the comments section is for this is exactly what Luciano and Vincent have done.
    – mbigras
    Commented May 26, 2016 at 21:38
  • I think the most important question I'm curious about is do you think that both comments are inline with the GC Be Nice policy?
    – mbigras
    Commented May 26, 2016 at 21:47
  • I'm sorry you feel that way and that you haven't had a good experience! I encourage you to hang around in chat to learn more about what our community is like and especially what the people are really like. I think my answer already answers your question and will not debate in the comments, especially when you don't address points of my answer Commented May 27, 2016 at 0:49
  • I did address your points. A) You don't want to debate whether my post was on or off-topic so I dropped it. B) You don't see anything rude about Luciano's comment, so I gave an analogy explaining why I think it is rude and then asked you a question about that analogy. C) You can see how Vincents comment could be interpreted as somewhat hurtful but don't think it was his/her intention so I pointed out that there has been no response from Vincent to clarify intent or apologize for a statement that you agree could be interpreted as hurtful
    – mbigras
    Commented May 27, 2016 at 12:35
  • @mbigras If you took the time to go through Vincent's posts and chat messages, I believe you would agree that it was not his intent. There is value in getting to know people better before passing judgement Commented May 27, 2016 at 12:52
  • I think that's a fair point. Honestly, going through more posts it seems like there is a lot of exasperation when people ask questions about software and so this is the place their comments are coming from, namely that both their comments are just reflecting the exasperation that is being felt in your community because people like myself assume their question is relevant, (but I mean common, you have to understand where someone is coming from when they do that, programming tool = programming stack, graphic design tool = graphic design stack it's a pretty natural jump :) )
    – mbigras
    Commented May 27, 2016 at 13:57
  • 1
    I regret emailing SE. As far as I'm concerned, I misunderstood. If anything comes of it I'll definitely point them here. Just some feedback though, I really don't think your help page is as cut and dry as PieBie is suggesting, on one hand simple how to questions are listed as "do not post" but then add a caveat that you should search before posting, which is what you should do with every question, next Application Troubleshooting and technical support is listed as do not post but that's pretty similar to a how-to about an application.
    – mbigras
    Commented May 27, 2016 at 13:58
  • I'm suggesting it's an already confusing situation and I don't think pointing people to your help page necessarily clears up the confusion.
    – mbigras
    Commented May 27, 2016 at 13:58
  • I'm sorry I assumed my question was relevant and didn't take the time to get the general pulse of this stack. I can appreciate where your community seems to be coming from, you have an idea for the direction you want questions to take and that doesn't include software related questions. It's tough though man, I think you're fighting an uphill battle, when you search wikipedia for Graphic Design it lists the entire adobe suite. In any case I'll keep my software questions in SO, thanks for your comments.
    – mbigras
    Commented May 27, 2016 at 13:59

The problem is that Graphic Design is not about how to use software, as such. So asking about hotkeys is on the very thin edge of things that fit the scope. But one cannot help being affected by what users, even new ones, think of the scope - eventually people will cave.

The thing is that asking how to use Adobe's tools is somewhat tolerated. But you may notice that there is very little tolerance for such things in other software.

The second thing is that GD is much slower than the programming forums. So close votes really tend to be discussed. On StackOverflow you can expect a question to be closed quickly. Here a close might take weeks or months (or years). And that's not very fruitful for anybody.

In the case of Vincent's answer, that's not typical of him. But remember that he can not only vote for closing questions, as that would immediately hammer the question closed.

Should this question be closed? Most probably.

  • Should this question made by an experienced GD member, with 9 upvotes throughout, and an insightful response from one of the moderators of this community, not the mention the light and friendly comments about how interesting of a topic it is be closed? I also think that the speed at which questions are closed is the main point I'm bring up, nor the thing that is not fruitful in this case. I think the thing that is not fruitful is making disrespectful and hurtful comments.
    – mbigras
    Commented May 26, 2016 at 21:22
  • I don't understand what you mean in regard to Vincent's answer. I hear what you're saying about how it not typical of him, but I don't understand what you're recommending I remember, can you clarify? Also as stated before, the fact that he is recommending I close the topic is not what I felt was disrespectful (although I disagree). I think he's within his right as a moderator to close or recommend closing a question, but I don't think he should be allowed to make comments suggesting the uselessness of another members question.
    – mbigras
    Commented May 26, 2016 at 21:28
  • @mbigras One question is not solely a good indication of site policy. Personally I feel like both should be off topic, but whether or not that one should be closed should also be applied to your question, either way the community decides Commented May 27, 2016 at 0:50

I think one issue that hasn't been discussed here, and I don't want this to be taken as rude, but since people know me as being blunt I'll still say it.

That said, you post an answer when it mostly certainly has no relativity to the question you asked in the answer area. Beyond that you go to a StackExchange website that is far more tolerant than any other stack and you get offended when we try to tell you your question isn't in scope.

Frankly, I do not see an issue with what was said. My issue was that your question wasn't in scope and I get why Vincent didn't close it, but frankly it should have been closed and, as I stated, you're asking for software changes when the site's main focus is graphic design. Another issue I have is that it looks like a question with no basis or effort visible. If you at least put the same amount of effort to show what you're after as you did in this meta post, I would have even upvoted your question.

To that end, Vincent is one of the nicest guys here and I've never seen an issue with anything Luciano does, so I think you're upset with us not allowing it and are taking the comments to heart.

Like any SE site, it is run by the community. If you want the scope to change, then participate. But going to a site with what can be perceived as hostile will be met with a fence in its place.


Sorry to be late to the party. Been traveling. A lot has been said, and accepted which is good but I'd just like to give my own take real quick:

Is my question relevant?

How can I quickly hide or delete a layer in Illustrator without using the Layer Panel?

And particularly you feel it is because of this similar question: Keyboard Shortcut to hide selected layers in Photoshop

Is it relevant? Yes. Is it interesting? Not really. I downvoted it, I'm the only one in fact to downvote the older question. I downvoted yours as well. As I mention in my answer https://graphicdesign.meta.stackexchange.com/a/2480/2611

I don't usually vote to close stuff like this though, I downvote.. Close is for off-topic, downvote is for lack of effort.

And that was before I became a mod. Now I definitely will not close since its binding.

But more to the point - why did I even answer the other question? Because multiple people provided incorrect answers. Those are now deleted and you don't have enough rep to see that. When I see people giving erroneous answers it greatly increases the likelihood I will want to answer it even if its a bad question to begin with.

Are these two comments in line with TOS?

That's a matter of opinion. It's a fine line that you can see just by reading the meta. Hopefully as a result of this more members can see why even things they might not consider to be anything but friendly banter can be taken as sarcastic and off-putting comments.

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