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RTMFA
April 6, 2014 9:30 PM   Subscribe


 
tl;dnr

Sorry, I couldn't resist.
posted by DrumsIntheDeep at 9:33 PM on April 6


A friend posted that on Facebook, and I read the headline, rolled my eyes, and thought, "Jeez, again?", figuring the ensuing discussion would be a total rehash of similar past discussions.

Which didn't make me read the article, but at least I didn't comment without reading the article.
posted by jaguar at 9:33 PM on April 6 [1 favorite]


Why don't people read?

(Metafilter comments, that is. To prove you actually DID read this comment, please do not comment in this thread, or if you do, say you agree with Chaz 100%. Then we can watch and see which idiots didn't read this comment and follow the simple instructions!
posted by chaz at 9:45 PM on April 6 [9 favorites]


for my April fool's joke this year, I shirked on most of my major responsibilities and instead played Mini Metro for five hours

trickster makes this world yo!!!!
posted by threeants at 9:52 PM on April 6 [8 favorites]


I get the weekly email of "NPR's Most Emailed Stories" and the April Fools article was #2 this week, right after the Ebinger's Blackout Cake story.

Sigh.
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:01 PM on April 6


Probably my second favorite April Fool's joke this year (behind Metafilter's of course). But man, reading the comments was suuuuuuuuuuuuper weltschmerzy.

Though NPR really knows their audience. It's like reading a million Jonathan Franzens having it out with himselves.

posted by Lutoslawski at 10:13 PM on April 6 [11 favorites]


But make sure you read all the comments up through this one where you're told you can comment however you like because chaz didn't close scope.)
posted by justkevin at 10:22 PM on April 6 [23 favorites]


I just wonder what chaz thinks about this.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 10:43 PM on April 6 [6 favorites]


yo I bet chaz has an important and valid opinion about this
posted by DoctorFedora at 10:50 PM on April 6 [5 favorites]


Are we really doing the Chaz thing? We're doing the Chaz thing. Hail Chaz. ALL HAIL CHAZ FOR HE IS 100% CHAZ.
posted by Lutoslawski at 11:05 PM on April 6 [2 favorites]


Meh. It turns out if you put a big question on the screen people will answer it rather than engaging with whatever prose you've decded they should read instead.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 11:13 PM on April 6 [3 favorites]


I am prepared to agree with Chaz 100%, I'm just waiting for the closing parenthesis.
posted by Dr Dracator at 11:36 PM on April 6 [6 favorites]


The best NPR April Fool's gag aired in 1996: Starbucks' Coffee Pipeline
posted by roger ackroyd at 11:57 PM on April 6 [1 favorite]


chaz can go to hell! No wait I agree with chaz.
posted by h00py at 12:06 AM on April 7 [3 favorites]


Didn't read the comments here, but if and when Chaz chimes in, I'll nth it.
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 12:11 AM on April 7 [4 favorites]


I only skimmed the first few letters of the article because I assume that I'm smarter than whoever wrote it, but does it address the question of whether it is, itself, an April Fool's joke or not? Because that's so obviously the first thing to consider. This is why journalism's reputation is suffering -- because so-called journalists can't even be bothered to do the minimal legwork required to determine whether the story they're writing is a one-paragraph prank or not. (I assume.)
posted by No-sword at 12:19 AM on April 7


RTMFA? I don't think I've ever seen it with a "mother" before. Is that a back-formation from DTMFA?
posted by RogerB at 12:33 AM on April 7


Cross-contamination from RTFM is my guess.
posted by Dr Dracator at 12:36 AM on April 7 [2 favorites]


RTMFA doesn't get many results on Google, so it's probably not really a thing, yet.
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 12:49 AM on April 7


I guess we're all "conveniently" forgetting about someone who could provide valid input on this topic - chaz.

To be honest, it really freaks me out why none of you guys have even mentioned chaz - must be the mods censoring our free speech again.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 1:15 AM on April 7 [7 favorites]


You will know if the mods delete a comment by chaz, because you will find yourself agreeing 100% with something and you won't know what it is.
posted by Dr Dracator at 1:20 AM on April 7 [3 favorites]


RTMFA is totally norm with the folks I hang out with. What I also haven't seen a lot of, outside my group I mean, is the alternate MFRTGDAA which though a little verbose still, I think gets to the meat of it.
posted by From Bklyn at 1:20 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]


I dunno if you guys are aware of this, but I think there was a metafilter post today which also used the "RTMFA" acronym - it was posted by divabat, post # 138076. I think chaz probably knows more about it, but that guy never even comments on MetaFilter, amirite?
posted by the quidnunc kid at 1:36 AM on April 7 [2 favorites]


Metafilter: not an infinitely recycled deluge of Obamacare cliches.
posted by marienbad at 1:48 AM on April 7


Meh. It turns out if you put a big question on the screen people will answer it rather than engaging with whatever prose you've decded they should read instead.

Yep.

This also shows a fundamental misunderstanding of why and how people engage with social media, I think. The commenters *do* read, as they themselves explained in their comments that we are being encouraged to mock and sneer at. In fact, they seem to read quite a damn lot, perhaps more widely and deeply than the people who clicked through to see the April Fool's joke. But they didn't read the article, in this case. Why? Maybe because they weren't on social media to read whatever shitty click-bait listicle, op-ed or thinkpiece that BuzzFeed or Upworthy or in this case NPR served up to them, but to *be social*, to voice their own opinions and share them with others. And wtf is wrong with that? Besides which, reading the comments on a Facebook feed *is* fucking reading. It's just not reading the mandated expertly written article (which half the time on Facebook is a BuzzFeed list of AskReddit answers punctuated by Game of Thrones gifs).
posted by dontjumplarry at 2:22 AM on April 7 [3 favorites]


.
posted by ardgedee at 2:47 AM on April 7 [3 favorites]


I agree with Chaz 100%.
posted by DreamerFi at 3:35 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]


WOULD SOMEONE EXPLAIN WHO CHAZ IS

FOR SERIOUS

KTHX
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 3:38 AM on April 7 [4 favorites]


Why don't you read (the comments), fffm? Welcome back.
posted by ersatz at 3:55 AM on April 7


Well I, for one, am a believer in chaz. Some say: "there's no evidence for chaz - your faith is founded on nothing!" But I know that while chaz has never spoken with "words," he speaks to all of us in our hearts. And you know - that's enough for me. chaz bless you all.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 4:01 AM on April 7 [2 favorites]


It's just not reading the mandated expertly written article

Does anyone read the comments down here?
posted by Joey Michaels at 4:02 AM on April 7 [3 favorites]


Why don't you read (the comments), fffm?

Because to save what few shreds of sanity I have left, I block comments everywhere.

I asked a simple question. If you're not prepared to answer it, why bother?
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 4:07 AM on April 7


The First Apostolic Church of chaz, La Luz del Mundo, welcomes YOU to a new relationship with chaz. Through our Ministry and program of charitable works, we reach out to all those downtrodden souls who have suffered in this life, cheering them with the Good News that chaz loves them. We believe that only through faith and devotion to chaz and living a chazly life can humankind be saved from damnation. So vote #1 chaz in YOUR heart, and reject the "evil one," the "dragon" whose sin poisons the hearts of unbelievers. I think that guy's name is zahc.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 4:10 AM on April 7 [3 favorites]


Q: how could this thread now become even more confusing?
A: CHAZ
posted by the quidnunc kid at 4:11 AM on April 7 [2 favorites]


I feel so...common. I read the comments and already voted #1 the quidnunc kid.

Chaz save me!
posted by riverlife at 4:21 AM on April 7 [3 favorites]


If the point of the NPR prank is that commenting without reading the article is worse than crafting an article with a bullshit headline, I'm not sure I agree.
posted by zanni at 4:24 AM on April 7


On one hand I agree with all of you, ALL OF YOU, DO YOU HEAR ME? Especially that Chaz guy, what an inspiration.

On the other hand, I spend [mumble] amount of time on Facebook, and this prank does throw a pin-spot on the fact that people will read a headline, ignore the article, and then hold forth with their Very Important Opinion, no matter what the subject or demographic.

We all know about Betteridge's Law of Headlines, because the people here are all very smart and savvy and we keep up with them there Internet Trends 4 Intellectuals, but pranks like this and sites like Literally Unbelievable matter (to me) because you can point directly to them and demonstrate to people who are In The Know that yes, people really ARE that gullible, and yes, people really DO go off half-cocked with no knowledge of what the hell they're talking about.

Not that we didn't know those things already, but hey - it's on the internet so it must be true.
posted by Hamadryad at 4:35 AM on April 7 [2 favorites]


TEACH THE CHAZTROVERSY
posted by Rock Steady at 4:37 AM on April 7 [12 favorites]


People don't read because they don't want to exercise their brains.
posted by Segundus at 4:44 AM on April 7


Because to save what few shreds of sanity I have left, I block comments everywhere.

I asked a simple question. If you're not prepared to answer it, why bother?


How can you be reading this, and where did you hear about Chaz if you have blocked comments everywhere?

IT IS A MIRACLE OF CHAZ!
posted by Dr Dracator at 4:46 AM on April 7 [5 favorites]


The point is for people who clicked the link to feel superior to those who didn't. And since those who didn't don't know about it, everyone wins!
posted by Obscure Reference at 4:46 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]


Can someone please explain this Chaz thing to me?
posted by to sir with millipedes at 4:55 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]


The chaz who can be explained is not the real chaz.
posted by Wolof at 5:05 AM on April 7 [14 favorites]


you agree with Chaz 100%
posted by GrapeApiary at 5:06 AM on April 7


During your times of confusion and perplexion, when you see only one set of footprints, it was then that Chaz carried you.
posted by klarck at 5:06 AM on April 7 [14 favorites]


An April Fool's joke by NPR? Did they play the 1954 recording of Gould's Goldberg Variations and tell people it was the 1981 version?
posted by Flashman at 5:06 AM on April 7 [27 favorites]


I liked the screen grab of people blustering they read 100s of books per year or 10s of books per week as if quantity is the best metric for whether you are a reader or not... I love to read but I have a kid, a spouse and a job too, and there's no shame in reading fantasy or mass market pulp either. The tone of the comments, meh... people act as if you're wasting your life if every book you read isn't Proust. Sometimes you want a steak, some times you want a candy bar. Mentally speaking I guess.
posted by caution live frogs at 5:26 AM on April 7 [2 favorites]


My comment was only made by the grace of Chaz. All hail his open parenthesis.
posted by dejah420 at 5:31 AM on April 7 [2 favorites]


True chaztafarians know that "chaz" is not capitalized, and to do so would be a sin against his holy name. And one day chaz will return and close his parentheses around the chazly, who are righteous in his brackets, and yay those who have capitalized chaz shall themselves be capitalized in the fires of the capital, which he will set on fire. This is the word of the chaz.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 5:37 AM on April 7 [10 favorites]


I understand that people are engaging with headlines to be social. In a social context though, ignoring 99% of what the other speaker is telling you in order to spout your own opinion is rude. As is wasting someone's time because they wanted to engage in a discussion on some topic, but instead they have to explain the basics of the topic to you because you didn't bother to read the article. Or you are derailing the conversation because you think the article's about X when it's really about Y.
posted by tofu_crouton at 5:58 AM on April 7 [7 favorites]


I blame Bush. Is our children learning? AMIRITE

Bu$Hitler = Painter

Bush it L = pain

Bush it = pain/L

Bush = L in pain/it

Bush is hell in pain. Over it.

Get a brain morans
posted by asok at 5:58 AM on April 7


feckless fecal fear mongering: "WOULD SOMEONE EXPLAIN WHO CHAZ IS

FOR SERIOUS

KTHX
"

The irony is deep, man.

FPP is about an article NPR posted on 4/1 to Facebook, with the headline: "Why doesn't America read anymore?"

"We totally do, NPR. Shut up. We read all the time. We're reading your article right now!" Facebook commenters screeched.

Except... they hadn't. Because if they had, they would have seen the article consisted of a short note explaining that they sometimes wonder if people are reading the articles they post or reacting to the headlines, and asking those who clicked through to "like" but not comment in response on Facebook.

Doh.

Third comment in this thread is from chaz. Read, and be enlightened. :)

---

A side note.... one of my biggest pet peeves about this site are folks who don't read links or a thread before participating. Please consider that you're most likely adding unnecessary noise to a thread when you don't do one or the other.
posted by zarq at 6:02 AM on April 7 [4 favorites]


Well to be fair to FFFM, he did admit: I block comments everywhere.. But since that was in a response to a comment, I think he may be incorrect.
posted by FreezBoy at 6:05 AM on April 7


Well to be fair to FFFM, he did admit: I block comments everywhere. But since that was in a response to a comment, I think he may be incorrect.

Sometimes a few slip through.
posted by BrashTech at 6:07 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]


chaz is very perceptive.
posted by rtha at 6:09 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]


Haven't read the thread yet because I'm in a hurry but for whatever reason this post reminded me that I agree with chaz.
posted by shakespeherian at 6:15 AM on April 7 [2 favorites]


An April Fool's joke by NPR? Did they play the 1954 recording of Gould's Goldberg Variations and tell people it was the 1981 version?

Haha!

They'd know it immediately- it was 1955.

Of course chaz knew this because he is a spirit, infinite, eternal, and unchangeable, in his being, wisdom, power , holiness, justice, goodness and truth.
posted by winna at 6:20 AM on April 7 [3 favorites]


winna: "Of course chaz knew this because he is a spirit, infinite, eternal, and unchangeable, in his being, wisdom, power , holiness, justice, goodness and truth."

The sportos, the motorheads, geeks, sluts, bloods, wastoids, dweebies, dickheads... they all adore him. They think he's a righteous dude.
posted by zarq at 6:29 AM on April 7 [6 favorites]


Ugh I can't believe how many people put so much investment into keeping a stupid running joke going.

For anyone who doesn't get it: there's no "chaz." It's just MetaFilter's version of a snipe hunt. Yet another one of those boring, alienating inside jokes like "MetaFilter Gold" and "there is no cabal" and "meetups."
posted by griphus at 6:29 AM on April 7 [9 favorites]


Ugh I can't believe how many people put so much investment into keeping a stupid running joke going.

For anyone who doesn't get it: there's no "chaz." It's just MetaFilter's version of a snipe hunt. Yet another one of those boring, alienating inside jokes like "MetaFilter Gold" and "there is no cabal" and "meetups."


Right... tell that to Paphnuty.
posted by leotrotsky at 6:43 AM on April 7 [6 favorites]


If you'd read the article you'd know just how important chaz's input is. Put that in your bean pipe and ponder it!
posted by h00py at 6:45 AM on April 7


I was just looking for a used car.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 6:47 AM on April 7 [9 favorites]


the quidnunc kid said:>True chaztafarians know that "chaz" is not capitalized, and to do so would be a sin against his holy name. And one day chaz will return and close his parentheses around the chazly, who are righteous in his brackets, and yay those who have capitalized chaz shall themselves be capitalized in the fires of the capital, which he will set on fire. This is the word of the chaz.


Ah, but you see, chaz is merciful and understands how autocorrect can trip even the most loyal of parenthetical chaztafarians. All hail his open parenthesis.
posted by dejah420 at 6:48 AM on April 7 [2 favorites]


This joke was not aimed at people who want to engage socially.

This joke was aimed at people who look at a headline and start vitriolically hollering about the content of the piece as if they have read it, when they haven't, and as if they know what it says or must say, when they don't.

It was aimed at people who say "this writer is an idiot" about pieces they haven't read, which happens all the time. It was aimed at people who say "I guess it never occurred to you fucking morons that [XYZ]" when [XYZ] is the entire point of the linked piece. It was aimed at people who look at a headline and assume they know what the piece says and respond accordingly. It's about people's bullshit detectors turning into assumptions that anything they haven't read can be safely assumed to be bullshit. Because doing that stuff is not pro-engagement; it's anti-engagement. It can turn a thread of Facebook comments into a trash heap.

In other words, it's not about disliking the idea of people socially engaging, nor is it about insisting that everyone RTMFA. Nobody Rs all T MFAs, including me.

It's about people who scour Facebook -- and the internet in general -- looking for things to be abusive and rude and self-satisfied about, who are not the majority, but who are disturbingly difficult to avoid. And although I had nothing to do with it, I fall to my knees in gratitude that somebody did it, because it made its point perfectly. It's about the fact that if you can't be arsed to find out what a thing is, that's perfectly okay. But maybe don't pretend you did.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 7:09 AM on April 7 [24 favorites]


I will read neither the original article, the article on the article, the comments on either article, nor the comments about the comments on the articles.

Because all that disagrees with chaz is heretical, and all that agrees with chaz is redundant.
posted by kyrademon at 7:33 AM on April 7 [3 favorites]


I find it amusing that other people are not absolutely mortified by the thought of commenting on something they have not read. That generally does not apply to the comments however, with chaz being the obvious exception.
posted by antonymous at 7:41 AM on April 7


kyrademon: I will read neither the original article, the article on the article, the comments on either article, nor the comments about the comments on the articles.

I don't understand the question, and I won't respond to it.
posted by Rock Steady at 7:56 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]


Interesting thing that wasn't in this article that I didn't read: apparently, scientists have worked out that - based on their observations of the expansion of the Universe and the structure of galaxies - only 5% of the Universe is composed of normal, baryonic matter. The rest is stuff we cannot even observe: 27% is "dark matter", and the remaining 68% is chaz.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 8:31 AM on April 7 [6 favorites]


When I was at school the campus humour newspaper pulled a pretty good April Fools Day joke by putting out a fake version of the regular campus paper. The lead story stated that the arts and science (the largest faculty) spring formal had been canceled, and that if you wanted a refund you had to go to a certain office in the student centre by 5:00 that day. So the building was swamped all afternoon with angry, confused students.
posted by The Card Cheat at 8:47 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]


Chaz thought he was wrong once, but he was mistaken.
posted by JanetLand at 8:50 AM on April 7 [2 favorites]


I TOTALLY DISAGREE WITH CHAZ AND WILL NOT LET THAT MOTHERFUCKER RUN MY LIFE!!!!
posted by Mental Wimp at 9:22 AM on April 7


chaz does not even fear Chuck Norris.
posted by Greg_Ace at 9:28 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]


chaz has cameras.
posted by The corpse in the library at 9:28 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]


Mental Wimp is a heresiarch! Burn the unbeliever!

There is no chaz but chaz and chaz is his chaz!
posted by winna at 9:42 AM on April 7


I know it's an unpopular opinion on MeFi, but I'm a climate chaz denier. I just don't think that there is a scientific consensus on whether chaz is taking place, or whether chaz is caused by humanity. Not that you sheeple can cope with a different view on such things.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 9:58 AM on April 7 [3 favorites]


I read the linked article only because there was the possibility the article would be some kind of a meta-April Fools joke similar to the original NPR April Fools joke.
posted by gyc at 10:17 AM on April 7


Oh MeFi! Great wisdom it has,
In comments committed by chaz!
Though I've not seen this thread
(Even stuff that I've said!)
I mean, some of my own comments could be in limerick form for all I know. I didn't read it.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 10:21 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]



RTMFA? I don't think I've ever seen it with a "mother" before. Is that a back-formation from DTMFA?
posted by RogerB at 12:33 AM on April 7 [+] [!]


Cross-contamination from RTFM is my guess.
posted by Dr Dracator at 12:36 AM on April 7 [+] [!]


Oh! I must have mixed it up with DTMFA, oops.
posted by divabat at 10:50 AM on April 7 [1 favorite]


Create Harmonious Acronymic Zingers
posted by RogerB at 11:13 AM on April 7


This Is Just To Say

I have not read
the post
that was on
the Facebook

and which
you probably
linked to
in jest.

Forgive me
It was so incite-ful
so vexing
and so chaz
posted by drlith at 11:39 AM on April 7 [5 favorites]


chaz does not even fear Chuck Norris.

chaz is gonna be real surprised at the turn this thread took when he comes back to it*.

*also known as the Second Coming of Chaz
posted by mstokes650 at 12:03 PM on April 7 [4 favorites]


"Chuck Norris? Never heard of her." - chaz
posted by sidereal at 12:05 PM on April 7 [1 favorite]


I'm still waiting for Larry Eisenberg to post an apropos limerick, but he can't be bothered so here goes:

‘Fore commenting on what you’ve read,
Consider the folks in the thread
Read the damn article,
Son of a barnacle,
RTMFA, or play dead!

Thanks for all the laughs, Larry!
posted by etherist at 12:14 PM on April 7


chaz obviously got got by the cabal but in my visions I know he was going to sign his comment Todd Lokken
posted by klangklangston at 12:48 PM on April 7


Seriously, could someone just please explain what all the chaz references are about? Maybe zarq or klangklangston or one of you other jokesters?
posted by straight at 1:03 PM on April 7


Eponysterical.
posted by drlith at 1:27 PM on April 7 [6 favorites]


If you'd accepted chaz into your heart as your personal chaz you wouldn't need any explanation.

I am sad that you haven't seen the light of chaz and will pray for you.
posted by winna at 1:29 PM on April 7 [3 favorites]


RTFComments

:-)
posted by sio42 at 1:31 PM on April 7


Our chaz is a mighty chaz, and you too can know his grace and ( . Fear not, for his open parenthesis has room for all.
posted by dejah420 at 2:00 PM on April 7 [4 favorites]


Deep in his slumber, one night a man had a very real, yet surreal dream. He dreamt that he was walking along the beach with chaz. As he looked up at the sky, he saw all the comments of his life flash by, along with two sets of parentheses: one set for himself, and another for chaz.

After all the comments had flashed before him, he looked back at those parentheses and noticed something quite disturbing: During the most difficult threads in his life, he saw only one set of parentheses.

This deeply troubled the man, so he turned and said to chaz: "You said that if I read all the articles, then you would always comment with me through thick and thin. In looking back, I see that during the grariest threads there is only one set of parentheses. Why did you leave me when I needed you the most?"

"I love you and would never leave. It was during those times when you flamed out the most that I read the article for you."

(
posted by Rock Steady at 2:13 PM on April 7 [3 favorites]


chaz
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 2:16 PM on April 7


)
posted by chaz at 3:05 PM on April 7 [27 favorites]


There will never be another kibo.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 5:43 PM on April 7 [1 favorite]


There will never be another kibo.


There will be many other threads like this
And kibozing by someone you don't know
There will be other chaz's to tout
Another MeTa, another rout
But there will never be another kibo

posted by Greg_Ace at 7:00 PM on April 7


chaz knows his mushrooms.
posted by desjardins at 11:31 AM on April 8


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