# What's the protocol for questions that can easily be answered by Google? [duplicate]

For exaple, OP of this Proxima Centauri's flare: effects on a terraformed planet question could have answered his own question with the Google search "Proxima Centauri planet" and a little reading.

• As pointed out here: Look at the tooltip for the downvote button - "This question does not show any research effort; it is unclear or not useful" – Secespitus Apr 16 '18 at 18:49
• Ironically enough, both of these questions can be found by plugging is:q google into the search box at the top of Worldbuilding Meta. :) The list of hits for that search query isn't even overly long... – user Apr 16 '18 at 18:50
• @MichaelKjörling where's the line between trivial and hard-but-Googlable? – RonJohn Apr 16 '18 at 18:55
• I think Questions that show a lack of basic research more or less covers that case. That said, most questions where an answer can easily be found by using one's favorite search engine tend to not be very well researched either way. – user Apr 16 '18 at 19:03
• Any question is technically googleable, and if it's not there probably isn't an answer. In this case you'd have to look up info on the orbit of this planet, and have knowledge of the effects of solar flares in regard to the characteristics of that star, and how much effect it would have on a planet with that orbit. I'd not call it trivial. One thing is that effective googling is an acquired skill. It may seem really easy to you, but for someone else that doesn't know it's a lot harder. It's like when I tell people that installing their own RAM is easy. Most the time I just get blank looks. – AndyD273 Apr 16 '18 at 19:23
• @AndyD273 I didn't even know that Proxima Centauri had a planet... but that's what I googled: "Proxima Centauri planet". – RonJohn Apr 16 '18 at 19:44
• Do keep in mind that Google search results are different for different people, based on unknown factors. So just because it's easily searchable for you doesn't necessarily mean someone else will get the same results back even if they plug in exactly the same keywords at exactly the same time. Chances are reasonably good if it's a major web site like Wikipedia, NASA, or something like that, but it's still not necessarily a given. So while "a major reputable site is on the first page of hits for appropriate keywords" may be an appropriate metric, "it's the top hit" might not be quite as much so. – user Apr 17 '18 at 7:54