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Peak Advertising and the Future of the Web

"Advertising is not well. Though companies supported by advertising still dominate the landscape and capture the popular imagination, cracks are beginning to show in the very financial foundations of the web. Despite the best efforts of an industry, advertising is becoming less and less effective online. The once reliable fuel that powered a generation of innovations on the web is slowly, but perceptibly beginning to falter. Consider the long-term trend: when the first banner advertisement emerged online in 1994, it reported a (now) staggering clickthrough rate of 78%. By 2011, the average Facebook advertisement clickthrough rate sat dramatically lower at 0.05%. Even if only a rough proxy, something underlies such a dramatic change in the ability for an advertisement to pique the interest of users online. What underlies this decline, and what does it mean for the Internet at large? This short [PDF] paper puts forth the argument for peak advertising—the argument that an overall slowing in online advertising will eventually force a significant (and potentially painful) shift in the structure of business online. Like the theory of Peak Oil that it references, the goal is not to look to the immediate upcoming quarter, but to think on the decade-long scale about the business models that sustain the Internet." [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Jun 3, 2014 - 173 comments

"You Crazy Bastards. What Have You Done? Now I Have To Rebuild!"

In 2003, Andy "waxpancake" Baio created Upcoming, "a collaborative event calendar focused on interesting arts and tech events around the world, curated by its community. It surfaced weird and wonderful events that usually fell under the radar of traditional event listings from newspapers and local weeklies." In 2005, it was acquired by Yahoo!, who killed the site last April with little warning, and no way to back up events. Fortunately, the complete site was saved by the Internet Archive. But Upcoming isn't dead yet! Two months ago, Yahoo! offered to sell the domain back to Baio. And now, with a fully-funded kickstarter, he's planning on "rebuilding it for the modern era using tools and platforms that weren't available when it was first designed." Welcome to the brilliant life, stupid death, and improbable return of Upcoming.org. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 3, 2014 - 22 comments

The Mother of All Self Links?

Metafilter is laying off 3 of its staff, including long time moderator and frequent moral compass Jessamyn who is moving on to Internet Archive’s Open Library. November 2012, Metafilter experienced a sharp drop in traffic. Slate asks "Why has Google forsaken Metafilter?" But the problem is endemic of a larger issue. Google is breaking the internet. [more inside]
posted by [insert clever name here] on May 22, 2014 - 734 comments

I cut my hair to make the wings

Stan Alcorn on Digg attempts to answer why audio almost never goes viral. Alcorn outlines a rare exception in how an audio interview of two girls and the "Worst Haircut Ever" went from a coffee shop show called “The Ear Cave” in Hartford to a one line link on Metafilter made several months later by gauche, to ultimately landing on gawker where it ratcheted up 1.3 million views. [more inside]
posted by zenon on Jan 16, 2014 - 16 comments

We were wrong?

Even Ph.D.s Who Got “Full Funding” Have Huge Amounts of Debt (SLSLATE) "A shocking number of users also report [a debt loan of] $100,000 and up; some $200,000 and over, even with a funding package. “My graduate stipend did not cover my living expenses, books, money I needed for research,” explains one user. “TA salary and fee remission not enough to support my two children,” says another. Graduate students do not usually receive funding in the summer—but are often expected to complete intensive research or exam prep—so many users also cited summer living expenses. Though Kelsky expected a substantial reaction, she says she is still “stunned” at the rate at which entries keep coming in, and “with such devastating figures and stories.” (be sure to check out the link for 'fully funded')
posted by MisantropicPainforest on Jan 16, 2014 - 152 comments

Pokeman Hopefully Crossing

Awkward Sign Generator. Inspired by the awkward phrasing of Automatic Caution Door signs [via mefi projects]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Nov 23, 2013 - 51 comments

The 14th July 14th

Cat-Scan.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
posted by FelliniBlank on Jul 14, 2013 - 139 comments

First!

"Just setting up my twttr". This Was First archives the first posts on some of the world's biggest websites. (Metafilter is sadly absent from the archive.)
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul on Jul 14, 2013 - 27 comments

Everything is fleeting

"It feels strange to be active and highly visible on the Web for 15 years but it was only when I joined Facebook that someone from elementary school or high school ever contacted me." In which on Ev Williams's platform, Mr Haughey compares his experiences of Facebook and Twitter. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore on Dec 1, 2012 - 109 comments

Another banner year for scanning cats and filtering metas

Cat-Scan.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
posted by reprise the theme song and roll the credits on Jul 14, 2012 - 144 comments

The continuing gamification of life

Fitocracy is a social game that harnesses the power of feedback loops to promote fitness. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Nov 1, 2011 - 41 comments

Feline Imagine Circa 1999

Buzzfeed.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
posted by awesomebrad on Mar 3, 2011 - 32 comments

Old Man's War

(Metafilter's own) science fiction author John Scalzi potentially has a movie coming out. It's to be based on his work Old Man's War. Wolfgang Petersen is apparently set to direct. [more inside]
posted by converge on Feb 23, 2011 - 40 comments

Metafilter is dis many years old: !!!!!!!!!!!

Cat-Scan.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
posted by The Devil Tesla on Jul 14, 2010 - 238 comments

group art = chaos?

Come on Metafilter! Have something prettier than the reddit version.
posted by grumblebee on Dec 3, 2009 - 145 comments

Imagine 150 years of Metafilter

"Notes and Queries: A Medium of Communication for Literary Men, General Readers, etc." Notes and Queries is a long running journal which printed the, well, notes and queries sent in to them by readers. Google books seems to have full view available for most, if not all, of the issues from the founding in 1849 up through 1908. [more inside]
posted by Caduceus on Mar 7, 2009 - 12 comments

Happy Birthday Metafilter!

Cat-scan.com Cat-Scan.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
posted by jokeefe on Jul 14, 2008 - 186 comments

A polaroid a day keeps on keeping on

MetaFilter's own dirtdirt has been taking a polaroid photograph every day since July 14th, 2002. That's 2114 images as of today. He has other cool sets on his flickr page, my favorite being his pictures of school lunches.
posted by Kattullus on May 5, 2008 - 42 comments

MetaFilter, Albania

MetaFilter: A small city in Albania? This is, to be perfectly clear, a link to a site designed primarily with the intent of getting people to link to it.
posted by Wolfdog on Dec 17, 2007 - 41 comments

July 14, 1999

Cat-Scan.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
posted by Stan Chin on Jul 14, 2007 - 111 comments

the bester on the bestof

Unlike the time you gave up on Slashdot, you eventually came back to Metafilter.
posted by progosk on Dec 4, 2006 - 41 comments

Google loses one battle to the competition.

Google Answers Goes 404. Is it too much competition from Yahoo! answers or Metafilter?
posted by JJ86 on Dec 1, 2006 - 22 comments

What are those mefi artsy types up to now?

First, interrobang got the ball rolling with his cool illustrations that can be shuffled in any order to create a new continuous panorama. Cortex added some coded widgetry to automate the process, creating a neat little toy. Then taz and iconomy joined in with their own creative spin. It's nice to see a contemporary techno version of the polyrama, a fine creative tradition dating back to the mid 1800s.
posted by madamjujujive on Oct 17, 2006 - 39 comments

god damn how good at animation french students are.

Another fucking elephant post. This one however is followed up by a link to inhumanly good animation done by another French dude at the same company.
posted by 6am on Oct 8, 2006 - 22 comments

Are MetaFilter users too cynical? Or simply more intelligent and analytical?

The online confession of a childhood murderer. The story behind a trolling comment that caught notice here long ago and I never stopped wondering about.
posted by mathowie on Sep 25, 2006 - 48 comments

MetaFilter is seven!

Cat-Scan.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
posted by kyleg on Jul 14, 2006 - 181 comments

An Embarassment of Musical Riches

You desire new music? How fortuitous! Look what your fellow mefites have been up to:

- The 23rd Century, addictive psychedelic pop from tcobretti (via Projects)
- Both Ends of a Gun, a shotgun-produced country album by Miko (via Projects)
- Congratulations to the Young Men of Nelson, creepy tortured music-toy electronica by nylon (via Projects)
- MAXX KLAXON, ass-bumping orwello-euro electropop by Artifice_Eternity (via Projects)
- Inter[mediate], an electronic EP by phylum sinter (via Projects)
- Vector Trio, atmospheric jazzers, and just one client of turtlegirl's Scully Sound production outfit (via Projects)
- Fractures EP, some lush electronic stuff by nthdegx (via Projects)
- The Earl Stoner Band, countrified tunes by xowie (via Projects)
- Red On Strike, XX-fronted punk rock by InfidelZombie (via Projects)
- The Scarring Party, foot-stomping old-timey tunes by drezdn (via Projects)
- Soplerflo Archives, sundry musical noises by soplerflo (via...wait for it...waaaaaait for iiiiit...Projects!)

Viva la Projects!
posted by cortex on Apr 15, 2006 - 97 comments

Fifty-thousand.

50,000!
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Mar 13, 2006 - 94 comments

Homeland Security visit a hoax. Students do the funniest things.

America seems a little less evil today. The outrage and indignation expressed in a previous MeFi story was unjustified. The Department of Homeland Security did not visit a student after he made an interlibrary request for Mao Tse-Tung's Little Red Book. The student made it all up.
posted by Meridian on Dec 24, 2005 - 53 comments

But Metafilter DOES Exist!

This Site Cannot Exist! Recently I've been seeing a lot of crazy talk around the web regarding the possibility of a purely "community driven" website. And it is FIERCE -- running the gamut from here to here to here . And, although the ongoing discussion is interesting (and centered around the pontification of one person), I couldn't help but think, "What the Hell is wrong with these people?" Community-owned blogging/websites have been alive and well for years. For example: Kuro5hin, Slashdot, Linkfilter, Plastic, and a growing host of sites using community platforms like Drupal and Scoop. Heck, all they'd have to do is head on over to Google and type in the words "Community Weblog" to discover the answer to their queries. That's right. At the top of the page staring them in the face is the grand-daddy of all community Blogging -- the pioneer that started it all -- Metafilter.com!! Is community blogging possible? Come on! Long live the Big "M"!!
posted by jb_thms on Dec 6, 2005 - 43 comments

How do they rate websites, anyway?

What/who is silktide and how do they get these results? I submitted Metafilter to Silktide on a whim and now I'm wondering what tools/rubric(s) are these folks using and how do they arrive at their results?
posted by Lynsey on Nov 19, 2005 - 48 comments

Metafilter has an evil doppelganger!

Evil Metafilter doppelganger has been birthed unto the internet.
posted by jackofsaxons on Aug 18, 2005 - 127 comments

Happy Birthday, Metafilter!

Cat-Scan.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
posted by anastasiav on Jul 13, 2005 - 121 comments

Feel Good Friday

Metafilter has discussed the tsunami this year, and the dreadful aftermath, especially on childrenbefore, and we have discussed the various forms relief efforts can take. Old Skool web journaler turned author (book 1)(book 2) (book 3) organizes book drives every year for libraries. This year, she is organizing donors to supply basic school supplies for children in areas hit hard by the tsunami. The Kancheepuram District she is targeting for help has a large child labour problem, so giving these children what they need for an education is more than just books and pencils - it is a way to help them avoid the fate of so many of their peers, and to transition from 'child labourer' to 'child'. Pam is partnering with Asha for education. Her readers donated enough to hit the first two goals (approx $7000.00 so far), and the goal now is to supply every child in the region - $11,428 in total.

It costs $4.61 USD to supply one child with an educational kit.
posted by kristin on May 20, 2005 - 3 comments

mathowie + recumbent bike + Flicker = hilarity

Looks like someone got themselves a new recumbent bike. Original photo here, apologies to Matt, thanky to waxy
posted by 40 Watt on Apr 27, 2005 - 55 comments

save your posts? why not

the simplest ideas are usually the best ones. Its easy to forget that the internet is a relatively new medium. Whats the bet that in the future that we will all be wishing that we still had all of our content that we contributed to "cyberspace" such as reviews, comments, posts... Who knows if 10 - 15 years from now, if the sites we post on will still be up, even stable sites such as MetaFilter may not exist in the future. sites have shut down before, taking everyones content with it. Its a simple idea, why not just store your content, be it on your desktop or a web application? So who wants to start a MeFi label over at bulletin board buddy.
posted by omega on Mar 16, 2005 - 30 comments

Metafilter wins Best Community Weblog 2004

We're number one! So, how are we going to divide up the $20.04?
posted by sfslim on Mar 14, 2005 - 27 comments

Floggies!

With the next round of bloggies (or web log awards for those not down with the hip lingo), there's some concern that some types of blogs with large communities may not be included. Specifically, communities that are well known for tons of online events, and large gathering places whose interactions leak in to and out from real life. So, the food bloggers (floggers?) have done what they do best, and started their own awards - with 14 nomination categories, the results plan to, at the very least, make us all drool, if not inspire a few feasts here and there.

(and yay to mefi for winning last year's best community blog!)
posted by jearbear on Dec 8, 2004 - 7 comments

Viewropa

Viewropa - OK, maybe there's some agreement not to post this here, but I wasn't part of the development, and it's already got some good links (especially the evolution of writing one). So here's Viewropa - a community site started by members of MetaFilter who are attempting an experiment in multi-lingual, collaborative and Euro-focussed blogging. All are welcome here, no matter where you're from [...] (beware the impossible Portuguese kill-the-snowman game) (and I get the impression a non-English link would be more than welcome).
posted by andrew cooke on Oct 31, 2004 - 17 comments

updated server

The new server's up and until MetaTalk comes back to life, I wanted to keep this post up to track bugs. If you find one, let me know here.
posted by mathowie on Oct 29, 2004 - 54 comments

Election 2004: Step Right Up and Win Some Crap

Two weeks from today, John Kerry will win the popular vote by "23% or more" over George W. Bush, according to 5 Star Psychic Advice. See if you can do better than the spirit world by predicting the electoral and popular vote totals in the second quadrennial MetaFilter Presidential Contest ...
posted by rcade on Oct 19, 2004 - 127 comments

Work more or less

Add to this week's professional “secrets”, and scams to rube employers another idea of work: one person’s career can be your next hobby.
posted by xtian on Aug 27, 2004 - 22 comments

Posting and You..

Here's a good guide to posting, in flash form.
posted by sequential on Aug 26, 2004 - 9 comments

back from iraq

From the where-are-they-now (-and-I-hope-they-are-doing-ok) file: Jeremy Botter, our medic man in Iraq, has just released all his posts from Iraq as a free downloadable PDF. It contains the story of capturing Saddam, getting bombed at camp as soldiers died, and a whole lot of playstation2.
posted by mathowie on Jun 1, 2004 - 4 comments

$14 into $1,000 in one year

I'm not a fan of followup posts, but this is cool enough to mention. Remember the challenging question of how to turn $14 into $1,000? BirdD0g has taken that noodle-scratcher of a problem and turned it into his personal challenge, and he's taking everyone along for the ride at 14bucks.com. He's got until April 15, 2005 to turn it over into a grand, which sounds like plenty of time, but that's a lot of profit to turn over (7000% return on investment). Who wants to take my $14 bet it doesn't happen?
posted by mathowie on Apr 29, 2004 - 38 comments

METABLAST

METABLAST: Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries vs. MetaFilter.
posted by hama7 on Mar 9, 2004 - 54 comments

Quonsar, whatever will I do? Wherever will I go?

Metafilter as a screenplay.
posted by Vidiot on Dec 3, 2003 - 21 comments

My name is Misty and I think I maybe got married last night. Could someone call me back and tell me if I could get an annulment? I'm at Circus Circus?

What's really undermining the sanctity of marriage? Dahlia Lithwick has an interesting piece in Slate commenting on the real threats to marriage in light of Massachusetts Supreme Court's declaration that gay marriage is protected by the Constitution. Lithwick lists:
1. Divorce (~43-50% of all US marriages end in divorce)
2. Frivolous marriages (i.e. it is easier to get married than it is to drive a car, buy a gun, buy alcohol, etc.)
3. Birth control (is marriage "only for procreation"?)
4. The various challenges to our time and attention that take away from quality time with our spouses

Can MeFiers please share with those of us yet to be betrothed your secrets in keeping a marriage successful?
posted by gen on Nov 26, 2003 - 55 comments

Escher in 2003!

The results are in! the MeFi guesses weren't too far off, and Escher wins the domokun, while ook wins the booby prize.
posted by mathowie on Oct 8, 2003 - 18 comments

The birth of MoJo?

The founders of Metafilter and Kuro5hin plan to launch an independent news site this fall to track the 2004 presidential campaign. Matt Haughey and Rusty Foster, the programmers behind those two collaborative media sites, will create a "smart mob-style site" to provide a place for independent reporting about next year's election.
[more inside]
posted by Vidiot on Aug 7, 2003 - 45 comments

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