Activity from mathowie

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good faith flagging
Yeah, like Dumbo's magic feather, I imagine every comment had an implied sincerity flag already since the dawn of the site.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 2:45 PM on September 10, 2014

Mathowie 1, Travel Agency Shenanigans 0
So the company is now claiming they had nothing to do with it. I figured this might happen, since the emails we got weren't from an official address of their domain but instead came from sundancevacationlegal@gmail. Here's the full original email with headers and the PDF attachment over at dropbox if you want to see the message from them.

That someone completely unrelated to the company would do such a thing (and I exchanged several follow-up emails with them) seems… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 9:36 AM on September 3, 2014
This shows up as one a gigantic .txt file for me -- is that working as intended, or is the PDF attachment supposed to be a separate file from the email?

That's how attachments get transmitted, as encoded text.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 9:54 AM on September 3, 2014
Thanks for the detailed analysis, plinth!
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 1:05 PM on September 3, 2014
Here's some more details for MeFi sleuths. The person originally contacted us using the IP: 65.115.36.4

From some quick lookups and traceroutes, it appears to be an IP block owned by a canadian company but I'm tracerouting to somewhere in Texas, so this is maybe an open Tor proxy point?

A string of emails came from a Brian Smith at sundancevacationlegal@gmail.com. Thanks to Google, that means this Google Plus profile is the person that emailed… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 4:25 PM on September 3, 2014
Holy shit, doing a bit more IP digging, I get a Courtyard by Marriot in Pennsylvania from that IP, which is *drumroll* the state where Sundance Vacations is based.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 4:28 PM on September 3, 2014
I'm imagining if you're a dummy about how the internet works, you'd send illegal threatening documents from a public WiFi point that would have lax logging procedures. It'd have to be something you could drive to easily, send off, then go back to your home/office. A starbucks or a hotel seems like a good public-ish free WiFi point to exploit.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 4:39 PM on September 3, 2014
I'd be surprised if there weren't anyone out there doing a false flag thing as a roundabout way of attacking their enemies.

Here's the thing that is nuts to me. This could be a random person trying to "get" the company from a semi-anonymous gmail account, but they emailed me about a specific thread the real company emailed me about a year and a half beforehand. I never told anyone (aside from the mods) about the email that happened in early… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 5:19 PM on September 3, 2014
Defendant Friedman

I can't believe I missed this until today, but yeah, I think that's some of the original court order they forgot to edit out.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 6:09 PM on September 3, 2014
A couple people looked up the number with that $10 account, it's some random thing from last year, I think a dispute about real estate or something.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 7:24 PM on September 3, 2014
Matt, did the IP happen to trace back to the King of Prussia Courtyard Marriott?

Nope, the downtown Philly one maps to the IP.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 8:54 PM on September 3, 2014
What are you just sayin? I literally have no idea what you are implying.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 9:09 PM on September 3, 2014
http://phldcgw001ll

I narrowed it down to any Philly Courtyard by Mariott via geolocation services online. There are three Courtyards by Marriott in Philly, an airport one, a south navy yards one, and a downtown location. Looking up the various locations, you will find the downtown location has "phldc" in its URL. I assume the gw001ll stands for "gateway 1" and I am assuming the matching subdomains put this at the downtown location.… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 9:57 PM on September 3, 2014
Get your attorneys to send this company an ESI preservation letter and a notice of claim or presuit demand. This is bullshit.

What jurisdiction is the crime taking place in? They forged Mississippi documents, but did it from an IP in Pennsylvania, and I'm in Oregon. Ideally, I'd like to see real criminal felony charges, and a judge subpoena the Marriott WiFi records (to get the mac address of the network interface that was connected) as well as the… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 8:26 PM on September 4, 2014
Downtown Courtyard Marriott:

My IP was reported as 65.115.36.4.


Thanks SpiffyRob, that's the exact same IP as the original contact. So I'm 1000% sure now that they sent it from that exact location, and it sounds like you just walked up and logged on and sent it, so they didn't even need to be staying there to get on the WiFi.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 7:15 AM on September 5, 2014
Yeah, zarq, the CDA is still pretty tight and grants operators of forums pretty good insulation from what happens on their system by users.

I'm actually not stressed out about this at all, I wouldn't bother with a civil suit, I haven't suffered at all in this, it's mostly been amusing research and detective work for me.

Instead I'm looking at a company with two decades of shady dealings and disgruntled customers that seems like they might have… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 7:29 AM on September 5, 2014
Yeah, I get the chinese fake trademark warnings all the time, they scared me at first until I found out they were low-level scams.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 9:45 AM on September 10, 2014
Depending on how many times they have done this (and it appears they have done this a lot), this is a 20 year felony. Plus conspiracy to commit forgery.

I decided to finally sit down and contact the Mississippi courts about this. I called the number you listed Ironmouth, and they shuffled me off to the Attorney General's office, who shuffled me through three more people before I got I think an actual AG.

I explained the… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 10:06 AM on September 10, 2014

You sound just like a _____!
My proposed action would be that all comments inferring, implying and down-right accusing other members in the way I have outlined above should be flagged for deletion by default.

I disagree, mainly because it's sometimes helpful to stop someone and say "hey this part in your comment where you said this thing? That sounds kind of racist/anti-semitic/etc" to get them to rethink or make sure they explained what they meant. I've been called… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 4:33 PM on September 8, 2014
I'm just saying if you have two... let's say mods, and one is female and one is male and they do more or less the same job on the same website to the same degree of competency, the female one will get more shit and more random aggressive (and sometimes sexualized) crap about it. Doing the same stuff. In the same way. And that's too bad.

Amazingly, we even had pissed off dudes emailing us naming every female mod and outlining how they wronged them on… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 7:24 PM on September 9, 2014
[yeah, things are getting a bit heated here, I'd like everyone to take a step back and reconsider how their comments add to the original points being made in the post please.]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 9:00 AM on September 10, 2014
corb, those are all time-intensive solutions on the mod side to research and track every thread where they come up, and note it on every user with a history of behaving that way in those threads -- what I'm saying is we're doing the best we can as mods but hope people can maybe treat each other better to help with the gap.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 9:32 AM on September 10, 2014

Net Neutrality day: September 10th
FWIW, this appears to be scoped per-subsite and not metafilter-wide

Dang, sorry about that. I'll ping the people behind it to see if they can set their hide cookies to be domain-wide instead of per-subdomain.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 8:23 PM on September 9, 2014
Hey, to solve the annoying-ness issue, we're going to restrict the popup to metafilter.com only, so you shouldn't have to whack this on seven different subsites if you click around. Sorry about that aspect of it, I assumed they'd honor closing it once across the entire server.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 8:36 AM on September 10, 2014

96: The Great Flip-Offening
This is my first attempt at a flip-off for Coldchef
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 3:55 PM on September 5, 2014
It's never too late, pjern.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 4:10 PM on September 5, 2014
Cue lots of frantic clicking noises

Normally I cut out keyboard noises (sometimes cortex answers a contact form email in the middle of a podcast while jessamyn or I are rambling on) but I thought the clicker clicky sounds were so hilarious and they just keep going while we talk over them and act like we're not actively playing them that I left them in since they work to good effect.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 10:29 PM on September 6, 2014

everyone you disagree with isn't a rapist
[crayz, don't bring offsite drama here, period]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 4:40 PM on September 2, 2014
Yep crayz, if someone emails or has a facebook group or IM or other offsite mention of you, feel free to take it up with them, preferably in that other venue rather than drag it all here.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 4:52 PM on September 2, 2014
I'm fairly sure if a Mefite started posting hateful anti-feminist things on Twitter targeting and naming specific feminists on Mefi, that would be brought up and made public pretty quickly

This has happened before. We don't give people the satisfaction and attention they crave. People go on and on about how much they hate MetaFilter for various reasons on Twitter or Facebook. So be it, I'm glad it's not all noted and debated here.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 5:02 PM on September 2, 2014
Burying a thread like this is exactly what I was concerned about.

And yet, the thread is here, and was approved quickly after it went into the queue, so what do you oppose exactly?
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 6:43 PM on September 2, 2014
Yeah, I'm inclined to close this soon.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 8:33 PM on September 3, 2014

Remember when.
Wow, I don't even remotely remember what the reify site even was. I think it was music reviews in a pre-pitchfork world perhaps?

And yeah, the summer of 1999, I was treating MeFi like my personal blog because I was just seeing what might take hold. It wasn't until around January 2000 that the site started to operate like it does today and personal anecdotes were kind of gone from posts.

I remember I used to let Matt Dabrowski self-link because he… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 11:38 AM on August 26, 2014

Site extremely slow?
Yeah, the two Ferguson threads have been dragging down the server. We just rebooted everything and it feels speedy again, but those monster threads do eventually suck up all the memory/processing when they're active for weeks on end.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 2:44 PM on August 22, 2014
Yeah, it was all Phire's fault. :)
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 2:58 PM on August 22, 2014

IRL pony: Making meetup locations private
I totally understand the problem here, we designed this for public meetups at public spaces and now that a few private residences are used, it does present a problem for the FOREVER INTERNET that Google indexes. The problem though is that whatever flavor of "private" we all decide would work best (let's go with only logged in members that have said they want to go) isn't any guarantee of privacy.

We tend to stay away from trying to cloak sensitive material on… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 10:01 AM on August 17, 2014

What has anyone ever learned from Gawker?
What you describe sounds like reddit. Letting members get their own "subreddit" and then the best individual posts from those sub-blogs end up making up the homepage?

I know Nick Denton a bit, and I've actually sat down and talked to him about his ideal view of Kinja a couple times over the last several years. Some of it he patterned of MeFi -- trying to move from a top-down editorial type of publication model to more of a audience-generated bottom-up kind of… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 3:09 PM on August 13, 2014
AFAIK, MetaFilter's revenue traditionally came from AskMe (now I think it is the donation drive?), which people found via organic search.

Still does mostly come from Ask MeFi traffic, donations are about 1/3 of the revenue that Ask MeFi gets.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 3:10 PM on August 13, 2014

How would you clone Metafilter? (kinda)
You can make a decent enough metafilter clone with a simple copy of Wordpress. You'd just need to make people register an account to comment, etc, and could build anything custom you want in PHP off that database (user profile pages, etc). I am pretty sure that's now stavros runs Gamefilter.

Sportsfilter was a one-off clone of the MeFi codebase I did in 2001, and later they rewrote it from scratch in PHP I believe. Wheadonesque is custom, and I believe MonkeyFilter is… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 10:01 AM on August 12, 2014
I'd personally love to see a "community blog" that was really a restricted wiki where users edit one another's comments to produce a more optimal discussion.

That sounds kind of weird, but reminds me of how Quora works, where my questions and titles on questions get edited without my say (which I found kind of annoying).
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 11:07 AM on August 12, 2014

A proposal for compromise on an Ask queue
Here's my take as a mod running the site.

- It's not in the site's best interest to help users push the limits set in place as hard as they can. We have the 1 per week limits to help keep the site from being overwhelmed with questions and to force users to think hard about which questions they choose. If someone forgot their week was up and posted 10 days or another couple weeks later, that'd be totally fine and better in an overall health of the site aspect to keep the… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 7:19 AM on August 8, 2014
I want to discuss this intuition people have that more "low-quality" or "inferior" questions could sneak into the site and make it a worse place somehow.

I did a "find in page" for the word "inferior" that you quoted and there's only one mention, which is yours. I don't think anyone has said this, and you're making a bit of a leap.

I don't think pushing people to post more questions… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 7:58 AM on August 8, 2014

MeFi State of the Update
What about the plans to move the "help support" message from the tiny print at the top

We might move it down to the footer, I was thinking a sidebar type call-out would work but in some quick testing it didn't look right there.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 5:54 PM on August 5, 2014
There are no plans to do a mobile specific app. I explored this a couple times with different developers, and in the end, all we got was basically the same thing you see on the mobile web view. iOS development is also a massive expense, since neither me, nor cortex, nor pb code in Objective-C for fun.

Also, iAds from Apple are mostly terrible, and even though the ads aren't that great for iPhones with adsense, they're at least within the bounds of the subject matter of a… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 11:34 PM on August 5, 2014

#GlobalVoices / #NonWestNov / #GlobalSouthSept
This sounds like an interesting idea, about the only thing I'm not totally keen on it is that the theme for the month might dictate the subject matter of posts. You mention encouraging more posts about things outside the US, but the great thing about the July By Women project was it just encouraged females to post more, didn't dictate or suggest what anyone post about, and it worked out great to just having more posts and voices by women, not necessarily about any specific subjects.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 11:23 PM on August 5, 2014

95: #dickmove
That sounded good. Did you have to edit out all my mouthbreathing or was I doing better not doing it this time?

It sounded great in the original recordings! No edits necessary, though my setup is still making a slight hum I need to track down/eliminate. I think that "move the mic near your nose instead" solved it.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 6:36 PM on August 3, 2014
Whoa, I had no idea Mexico had 31 states. I would have guessed like a dozen, tops.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 3:53 PM on August 4, 2014

Podcast Post Pony Petition
Hmm, yeah, along the lines of MeFi Music, this would make sense for us to extend. I don't think it would be used much (and abused even less often), but I sometimes listen to old podcasts on other networks and it would be fun to be able to participate, even if it's a year or two after it was released.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 7:51 AM on August 1, 2014

New Features: FanFare Talk, and Movies
Just to be clear, I'm not intending to be completist about the entire Star Trek universe. I was going to go through one episode a week of the original series only, so that's about a year and a half of do all 79 episodes, and I was going to stop there (if it even gets that far). I figured it was a very famous old show almost everyone (but me) has seen but it's not a huge endeavor to rewatch them.

Old series are kind of weird for FanFare and I don't think it works very… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 5:43 AM on July 19, 2014

A IRL project, based upon Metafilter postings.
Sounds like a cool project.

Yeah, contacting users via MeFi Mail and/or email will be the time-consuming tricky part, you might want to contact them via social sites if they have those in their profile as well (twitter, fb message, etc) if they don't respond.

I'd love to see a show around that whole notion of ask vs. guess culture, it's still a fascinating phenomena that every time I tell people new to it about it, they invariably fall into one of those two camps.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 2:52 PM on July 18, 2014

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