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MetaTalk post: How about quality over speed?
By the time we'd seen the flags on Lutoslawski's post, after dealing with a surprising number of MeTa threads and other stuff today, the thin obit had 62 comments. At that point it seemed better to have Lutoslawski [who had emailed us asking us to remove it] to just post it in the open thread. Yes usually we'll confab and say "Eh this thin post isn't any good either" but there are conflicting pressures to stick with one where people are commenting. We felt it would have been punitive [just a... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 11:27 AM on May 4, 2012
MetaTalk post: Malicious AskMe
we discussed it, andoatnp. We try to squint at Ask Metafilter posts and see if there's an answerable question in there. When we're not sure, we sometimes wait and see how the thread pans out, if there are significant updates that clarify things, or if it resolves into a better question along the way, and whenever possible, discuss it among ourselves. All those things happened here.
posted to MetaTalk by taz at 9:52 PM on May 2, 2012
MetaTalk post: How hurtful do we go?
I think the tail end of that SMA thread and the reasons behind this MetaTalk thread are due to the subtle distinction between saying the way the parents wrote in the voice of their deceased child was creepy and people saying the grieving parents are creepy. It may be subtle, but it is important to note how different they are, because I don't think anyone is saying the latter, which is what this thread presupposes.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 6:51 AM on May 4, 2012
I feel what rtha feels. I think you had a very different reading from many of the other people in that thread of those specific comments. Now this may be because my emotional responses to some of the stuff on that blog were probably more like tzikeh's than other people's may have been. So I stayed out of the thread. I found it personally distasteful.

I'm having a hard time understanding how we could call ourselves an empathetic... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 6:08 AM on May 4, 2012
MetaTalk post: Please stop deleting my comments
The mods are 75% female

Matt still counts, sort of. And pb does a lot of work around here though he's not technically a mod. So it sort of depends if you count them at all. vacapinta still comes in one evening a week usually, but he doesn't interact on the mod mailing list or other stuff. We are grateful to have him but he's rarely active enough to incur anyone's wrath.

The big deal is if you have issue with how any of us are... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 7:36 PM on May 3, 2012
Seriously, Crabby Appleton, your allegations are not supported by the data as we understand it. If you want to have a discussion with us about this, you can use the contact form and we will talk to you about this. Or open your own MeTa thread. Otherwise, we need you to not make this thread all about you and your unique view of how this site works. This is your first and last warning on the subject.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 5:46 PM on May 3, 2012
We have deleted, from that thread

- someone making a nasty comment about your comment
- someone making a nasty comment about THAT comment
- the original commenter making a response to that and an additional snarky comment

At this point we left a note in the thread for people to please cool down.

Then I went to dinner, talked to Matt about that thread, and he was minding it. He deleted two more... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 5:34 PM on May 3, 2012
It's a difficult thread with a lot of people having a heated argument. hincandenza, I thought the thread was getting back on track and the fighting of who was at fault for these weird PUA dudes was simmering down when you left a comment basically blaming women almost completely for falling for these guys, which quickly ramped everything back up again in that I saw two responses almost immediately. I've already devoted several hours of reloading that thread and didn't want to see the same tired... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 5:40 PM on May 3, 2012
I don't know who deleted your comment, but restless_nomad feels free to delete anything she doesn't like, including anything that makes her look bad.

This is silly, deluded bullshit. You have a well-established shitty attitude toward moderation in general here and we pretty much expect that, but if you think Jeremy is running around nixing stuff just because she doesn't like it or wants to cover her ass you have gone well and truly off the deep end.
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 5:37 PM on May 3, 2012
MetaTalk post: Best of Blog launch is a go
Will it divert much needed traffic/input that currently occurs here? Will it dilute the filter?

It links to nothing but the actual posts on the site, so instead of imagining it as being something that could "dilute" the site imagine it as a giant funnel that brings a lot of other people to the site and makes the site better for it.

Originally I also thought about what a site would look like if the mantra was... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 4:24 PM on April 24, 2012
MetaTalk post: Make an effort, please.
I would have hoped that having been around so long some good faith would have been assumed on my part.

I didn't presume lack of good faith. You don't get a pass on wacky AskMe questions just because you've been around a while. There are guidelines for what a question needs to be. Yours didn't meet them. You can ask again next week with more context. Otherwise this was just a random nonsense question without a problem to be solved which is the bare minimum that we require.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 6:44 PM on April 23, 2012
Then make an effort to not make it look like it's some sort of a joke or stunt question. You have been on this site for almost seven years and hang out in MetaTalk. You should know that a cryptic six word question isn't really going to fly here. It was flagged more than any other AskMe post I can remember this year in the seven minutes that it was around. You can ask again next week with more details.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 6:34 PM on April 23, 2012
MetaTalk post: Chests are good, butts are bad, mmmkay? Bingo!
Nobody is invading personal space or following down dark alleys or even talking in person, nothing we do here is any real kind of threat.

We're not running a police precinct here; this is an online community centered around link-sharing and discussion. The bar we set for a basic level of success in getting people to co-exist here is not "no one gets stabbed in an alley".

So when we've got stuff where what seems like... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 12:58 PM on April 23, 2012
as a discussion of what male users considered attractive in a woman

With respect, most posts that are about women at all (women scientists, women crime victims, women visual artists) turn, at some level, into a discussion of what male users consider attractive in women. Less so now than they used to. AskMe threads about bra fittings turn into discussions of what male users think about how women's bras fit. It's really only been recently that AskMe... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 8:43 AM on April 23, 2012
Metafilter is not a feminist forum, it is a general interest site that sometimes discusses feminism. Some people honestly debate things that are basic and accepted among feminists, and having those debates here is not the same as trying to have them there.

I understand that a lot of people think that 'feminism' means something a lot more specific than it actually does, and that therefore it's a word that tends to read as special-interesty to a great... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by shakespeherian at 7:20 PM on April 20, 2012
It creates a ruleset where people are treated by different rules based on their gender, class, or ethnicity.

Is that the sort of community we seek to have here ?


I really don't know what to tell you at this point. My answer is yes, sort of. I am totally okay being in a community where nigger is treated as a worse insult than cracker and we moderate this site that way. Insults are,... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 4:55 PM on April 20, 2012
Mods, could you please clarify why these posts and comments are okay?

There are like four different things all wrapped up into one Metatalk post. But:

1. The "butts-and-tits movie poster shot" post was, eh. Not tremendous, it got a few flags, but it was a sort of pop-culture photo essay which is more interesting than just literally three paragraphs of someone on their blog saying "a thing is bad", and... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 1:07 PM on April 20, 2012
MetaTalk post: Thoughts on comment thread meta-comments.
crunchland, to be fair, you are part of that mob.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 5:33 PM on April 19, 2012
Or there could be some middle ground where people could stop being absolute assholes to each other and most of the time MeTa could be used for what it's supposed to be which is allowing people a place to talk about the way the site runs, is supposed to run, could run or might run. There is a huge internet where people can be assholes to each other pretty much non-stop and we are okay saying we'd prefer MeTa did not become any more like that. As cortex says, we delete precious little from MeTa... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 3:20 PM on April 19, 2012
I think metatalk posts should be open to ridicule as a self-correcting mechanism.

This is a non-starter. For this site to work as it's supposed to, MeTa needs to be available as a viable option for people. Turning into some sot of nerd thunderdome is not okay. We don't delete discourteous comments here but if someone decides this is going to be their own special hazing room (for anyone other than the mods, for whom it's a job requirement) we'll tell... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 3:09 PM on April 19, 2012
I think metatalk posts should be open to ridicule as a self-correcting mechanism.

I think they should be open to criticism. I think ridicule is mostly just people being shitty to other people out of some kind of failure of empathy rather any kind of improvement to what is nominally a community place.

There is no shortage of places on the Internet where people can act like pricks to one another. We're pretty light on... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 2:47 PM on April 19, 2012
thanks for the update please keep us apprised on your future flagging strategies.

And in sort of a related vein, this sort of thing is a good example of stuff that doesn't make metatalk threads themselves any better. It's okay to just not agree with or like someone's opinion about something site related and let that be your own inside-your-head thing to deal with instead of immediately getting sort of sarcastic and jerkish at people for using this... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 1:21 PM on April 19, 2012
MetaTalk post: As happy an ending as we're going to get.
Sorry griphus, it seems really stunty to put it up again with more links to see if it'll pass muster. This doesn't feel like a major story worth discussing, just a lapse in judgment by a comics guy that apologized several times for it (I'm not a fan of the comic, myself).
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 4:22 PM on April 19, 2012
Enjoy your sexism thread, I think I'm going to get a drink.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 4:20 PM on April 19, 2012
MetaTalk post: Boxster Short
it seems perfectly reasonable for the community to push back on questions that they feel violate the anonymous standards.

Not disputing this general point but there are a few decisions here that are not up to the community. The community can not, for example, decide to allow suicide questions. It can not, for another example, decide to let everyone ask 15 anon questions per year (though we could talk about that if there was some groundswell of... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 10:45 AM on April 17, 2012
It's not like there are a limited number of anonymous questions available that can only be bestowed upon those we deem worthy, for fuck's sake.

Just to be a devil's advocate for a minute here, this is sort of true and sort of not true. The anon feature has more utility as something that is available to the community but is not overused by the community. There's a lack of community cohesion in the anon question back-and-forth. One of the things AskMe... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 9:05 AM on April 17, 2012
Why not own up to your decisions, thoughts and problems?

No one is obliged, nor should they be, to live their entire life on the public record. The assumption that not broadcasting every detail of one's life is a failure to "own up" is problematic at best.
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 8:01 AM on April 17, 2012
MetaTalk post: Which Active Users have been here the Longest?
How has Mefi changed over the years?

Others have talked a bit about community internals, so I'll talk about the externals in 2000, by which I mean the content pool for posts. Context-wise: Blogger had just launched, Slashdot was still just about readable, the non-IE browser of necessity was Netscape or Mozilla Suite (or Opera), the iMac was still a CRT and ran OS 9. No YouTube, no Wikipedia, etc. No 4chan. No LOLcats. Google was the new search engine... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by holgate at 11:06 PM on April 12, 2012
MetaTalk post: Give full disclosure; get deleted.
When did the rule change from "Don't self-link, but you can post your friends cool shit as long as you don't make any money."?

2001, 2002 maybe?

At the dawn of Metafilter, there was no proscription on self-linking, but it became an explicit no-no somewhere within the first year or so after a couple folks kept doing it and the userbase got very vocally meh about that. (Back then people were using... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 1:24 PM on April 12, 2012
You're forcing the mods to make a public statement about a topic that is clearly black and white. As a mod, they can't answer that this could have been kept up, because then it opens the floodgates for all sorts of "grey area" posting in the future.

Well, to be clear, this is not something we let much grey into pretty much ever, because it's a policy we feel needs to be hewed to pretty tightly to avoid wandering into madness and... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 5:52 PM on April 11, 2012
If I had WITHHELD this fact, the post would NOT have been deleted, and a thoughtful and lively dialog would have continued to ensue.

And if we had found out after the fact that this was the case, we would have been rightly pissed at you. If you had not done it at all, things would have been hunky dorey. That people can sometimes in theory get away with breaking one of the few brightline rules we have around here does not make it okay to do so.... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 5:26 PM on April 11, 2012
MetaTalk post: We have a new meme. Yay! But it's like fingernails across a chalkboard. Boo!
Can we use the infodump to compare "boo," "yay," "meh," and "HAMBURGER?"

In fact, you can. Or more specifically, the Mefi Corpus Frequency Tables, which is a sort of linguistic cousin to the Infodump I've been working on on and off over the last while.

There's no clever search tools for it at this point—it's just raw data files—but analyzing this stuff to track yearly (or... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 3:26 PM on April 12, 2012
MetaTalk post: That was an ad.
The answer seems to be that moderators determine persistence of content based on judgement of the poster's intent and general community interest value---irrespective of whether that content is commercial. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

No, I'd say that's about right. That there's a commercial aspect to what is being linked is not by itself a factor one way or the other in whether a post is okay. There can certainly be specific problematic commercial... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 11:57 AM on April 10, 2012
I'm not sure how someone being an "in" member of the community should matter.

It's more just being a known quantity. This doesn't have to do with being friends with us, though ColdChef is a friend, it has to do with having an established reputation on the site, even that reputation is "total ankle-biting asshole" We know you, you're not spamming us, you've passed a few of the "Is this spam?" hurdles that we have. And... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 11:27 AM on April 10, 2012
It's about the post and policy.

The policy is generally there is no blanket ban on ads on the front page. There is a blanket ban on spamming which this is not (as cortex has explained). There is a suggestion to make good posts [i.e. interesting things on the web that people haven't seen before that will encourage good discussion] which this seems to be. If you have extra questions about how the line gets drawn, let us know. This isn't actually even... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 11:16 AM on April 10, 2012
Why is the thread OK?

Two reasons:

1. The poster is a known entity who is beyond suspicion, so there's no weird "is this literally an attempt to astroturf" cloud hanging over it. Barring ColdChef suffering some kind of psychotic break or deciding to make a change from the family undertaking business, there's not really any concern here that he's posting for dubious reasons.

2. More... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 10:59 AM on April 10, 2012
MetaTalk post: So what exactly is the purpose of the profile?
And to underscore part of the why behind this beyond just the general "don't be a jerk to each other" philosophy: profile pages are not indexed by search engines. They're specifically intended to be slightly more restricted spaces where folks can include some personal information, including some fields that are only visible to logged-in members, for community-centric reasons with the expectation that that info will not be unilaterally made public by other users.

So when... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 10:31 PM on April 7, 2012
MetaTalk post: This First-Page Party's Got to Go! Hey Hey!
but an OP posted every one of them.

Oh man, "OP" is the worst of the lot, (and is also an import from elsewhere I believe, not site-originating jargon). Because, yeah, not only is it opaque, it's also overloaded in use; some folks also say "OP" to mean "Original Post", i.e. the post in question, as if there were other posts involved, but also some folks say "OP" to mean "Original Poster", i.e. the... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 8:53 AM on April 1, 2012
And benbenson, as one of the folks who actually works here and is one hundred percent on my honor not fucking with you, I want to reiterate that I literally do not know what you mean and think you are misunderstanding what "FPP" means, which makes it impossible to know what you're asking. Can you restate your question without using the acronym "FPP", please?
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 8:21 AM on April 1, 2012
MetaTalk post: Why is my cat doing $weirdthing?
which matt seems to still have the knack of.

Feel free to drop him a note and complain and let us know what he says. Your ongoing nasty complaints in MeTa are never clear enough for us to actually address them in any substantive way. If you'd like to see something specific happen you are more than welcome to open your own MeTa thread or talk to mathowie or comment in a way that makes it clear that you have some sort of real issue that isn't just... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 5:48 PM on March 27, 2012
What is your deal, sgt.? You've been genuinely shitty to me and to Jessamyn a number of times lately; you hang out in Metatalk taking weird potshots or making sideways personal remarks at us. If you think there's some sort of fundamental problem with our moderation work, state your issue coherently and without all the "hmm, what do you suppose" nuttery, or maybe just take it up with Matt directly over email, but cut this oblique bullshit out already.
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 4:02 PM on March 27, 2012
MetaTalk post: Unflag/Reflag
Seems like it would be more important to be able to unflag than it is to unfavorite--which we can do.

The difference is that flags are a fire-and-forget tool for bringing something to the mod team's attention; favorites are a publicly-visible thing that you "own" and manage the lifetime of. There's a long-term relationship with faves that doesn't exist for flags.
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 12:42 PM on March 29, 2012
MetaTalk post: You say you want a resolution, well...
I think it might be better to get make sure we're communicating effectively what a best answer means for a user's question. I agree that what you are seeing is a problem. I think if we retool how AskMe works it may confuse as much as it helps. Right now the way things work is that people are prompted to leave best answers and mark things as resolved a month after asking their question. Many users do this early and some do this really in the first few hours a question is open which I think is a... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 6:30 AM on March 29, 2012
MetaTalk post: Pony Request
Sure, it's just not exactly a sure thing. Small non-disruptive tweaks stand a better chance than stuff that requires more implementation work, but ultimately it comes down to whether it feels to us like going forward with it will be worth the implementation and maintenance and user education costs involved. Little but unambiguously good nudges are often quick "done!" things; ambitious but workable and really promising ideas tend to take some serious conversation but get done as well... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 4:17 PM on March 28, 2012
MeFi post: Pop! ... Pop!
excellent use of sub
posted to MetaFilter by nathancaswell at 11:53 AM on March 28, 2012
MetaTalk post: confused about how to successfully ask anonymously
Actually it's usually a stern talking to the first time and a banning the second time because we are softies.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 1:56 PM on March 27, 2012
We try to approve anon posts in 48 hours unless it's over some sort of vacation weekend or something unusual. And yeah the system relies on you asking us if something wasn't approved and giving us some information about your question. We literally don't know who asked what [though we can look that sort of thing up in am emergency] but the trade-off for that is that we can't auto-notify people about this sort of thing.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 12:48 PM on March 27, 2012
Under any normal circumstances, an anonymous submission will get approved inside of a couple days if it's going to be approved at all. Usually it's a bit faster, but sometimes the queue gets filled up or mod attention is thin on the ground for random real-life reasons, and we don't like to post a whole ton at any given time or when we can't keep an eye on them, since they're a bit more work than non-anonymous questions for various reasons.

The way the system works, we... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 12:44 PM on March 27, 2012
MeFi post: As seen on podcast #69.
I miss memepool too.

So, to set some context: When I wrote memepool, there was no RSS, no MySQL. The word "weblog" hadn't been coined yet. etc.

So, I wrote my own in-memory database, items don't have permalinks, there were dozens of problems.

Then, it became very easy for people to have their own blogs - so having editorial curation was an impediment. Why write when it might get rejected per the style guide? Etc... [more]
posted to MetaFilter by joshu at 3:40 PM on March 27, 2012
MetaTalk post: Why is my cat doing $weirdthing?
Again, the time of day during which a question is asked has basically zero quantitative correlation to the average number of answers the question gets. The site has something resembling a 24-hour heartbeat in terms of aggregate answerer behavior; a question posted at noon server time and one posted at three in the morning are both likely to get somewhere around thirteen answers on average.

Variation between individual questions (for any number of reasons including... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 10:55 PM on March 26, 2012
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