FAQ: Multiple Tables - Left Joins


This community-built FAQ covers the “Left Joins” exercise from the lesson “Multiple Tables”.

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This exercise can be found in the following Codecademy content:

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FAQs on the exercise Left Joins

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When the task asked us to find the number of users who subscribed to the print newspaper but not to the online, can we just do a SELECT * FROM newspaper; instead of taking a left join of newspaper and online, and then eliminating all those rows in online that have a valid id?


Can anyone explain the logic behind number 2 of this problem?

It says to join newspaper.id = online.id and then where online.id is NULL;

Wouldn’t that mean that the newspaper id is also null?


If you just write SELECT * FROM newspaper; , you actually do a search only to the newspaper table. However, the task is asking you to do a search at the second table (online) as well in order to find those that are not line subscribers. This simultaneous query at the 2 tables can be done here only by using LEFT JOIN. Otherwise, your query is limited only to the newspaper table.