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MetaTalk post: No More Mr Frothy
But all that aside, I don't even mention him unless he's already part of the discussion, so you can leave me out of your attempt to smear me with that brush, thank you ever so much.

It is somewhere between okay and great to be more restrained about pet topics than that. You can mostly decline to mention him even if he has come up in the discussion if there's not some specific new substantial thing to be said. This certainly isn't only a you thing,... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 2:08 PM on February 9, 2012
He's a terrific asshole, but that doesn't mean that people need to spend time on MeFi trying to out-asshole each other hating on him. Go work to keep the guy from getting elected, please, but an online group hate session here both doesn't change anything in the real world and makes the site look like it's full of people who don't have any better way to manage or express their emotional responses to what's going on in the world of politics.

He is terrible. That doesn't... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 8:05 AM on February 9, 2012
I'm just the janitor, man.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 8:59 PM on February 8, 2012
Ask MeFi post: staying away from a toxic forum
[Several comments deleted: There will absolutely be no more inter-site drama carried out here. Anyone continuing this personal spat anywhere on the site will be banned.]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by taz at 11:37 PM on February 6, 2012 marked best answer
MetaTalk post: a human being and a public servant
No harm, no foul, right?

we can all rest easy.


With respect, I'd prefer we didn't play the "You don't care about child abuse!" game here. We're trying to discuss a difficult topic and making offhand statements that people are okay with child rape is really not a great way to find positions of mutual understanding. I know it's a natural sarcastic reaction to something that people find troubling, but it's not great... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 11:16 AM on February 5, 2012
need to clearly define where we fall in terms of what we see as our responsibility to report.

I'm a mandated reporter at the school I work at. I understand mandated reporting. People who feel that they should report should go ahead and report it. And we've said repeatedly in MeTa that if the cops come to us because they are investigating something we will decide how to deal with that [this is a "see mathowie" question, basically].... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 10:05 AM on February 5, 2012
people's awareness that a topic might result in a spectacle that might be a deterrent to the behavior both specific to this instance and generally as people involved

I'm aware that is, in some cases, what is driving people to harass the OP in that thread. However, it's not okay for AskMe. We do not think, generally speaking, that people are going to be using AskMe for tips on how to become a better sexual predator. There are many people in that... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 9:35 AM on February 5, 2012
Do we always want to be quiet about our culture's norms and the ramifications of the violation of those norms?

In general, when that comes up, MetaTalk is the place to discuss the culture's norms, not the thread in question. That's how the site has always worked, and it works pretty well, I think.

Specifically regarding legal threats, though, I have never worked at a place where the policy was anything other than insta-delete.... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by restless_nomad at 9:30 AM on February 5, 2012
Or just not tell people in the thread that they may be legally obligated to report the thread?

If you feel that you need to report something, go report it. Commenting in the thread that you may or may not report something is just turning an already-difficult thread into something worse. We understand that people's legal or ethical responsibilities may require them to report stuff. But similar to the FIAMO edict, just do what you have to do and don't... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 9:15 AM on February 5, 2012
I deleted that comment. If that user feels that they have to report this to the authorities, that is their business. We see people doing this from time to time, especially in drug, child abuse and immigration questions. It's our feeling that at the point at which you are threatening to send MeFi users or MeFi threads to the cops, you should probably not be using the site to do that. We usually MeMail people who make these sorts of threats and ask them to make a choice between continuing to be on... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 8:45 AM on February 5, 2012
Yeah, generally speaking we're getting into dealbreaker territory as far as membership in this community goes when you start making noises on the site about taking legal action against other members or the site or similar things.

It's complicated territory because, like folks have said, the site and we as mods don't have any control over what folks do or whether they feel a need to do something external to the site, and ultimately folks are beholden first to their own... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 9:06 AM on February 5, 2012
MetaTalk post: Why the snark, MetaFilter?
Not super often, not never. I'd say most of the time when something has a pretty significant pile of flags it resonates pretty clearly with our sensibilities about what should go vs. what should stay. The cases where there's a bunch of flags and we're all "wtf are people reacting to" are a lot less common, and we deal with those as they come up, usually with a lot of mod conversation over email and sometimes with conversation in context itself to try and understand what's up.... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 8:09 AM on February 4, 2012
What's the philosophy on flagging or deleting comments that derail a discussion on Metafilter?

Like folks have said, the core philosophy is "flag it and move on"; by flagging you help us have a better chance of promptly seeing deraily stuff and taking action on it (deleting and/or leaving a rerailing note in the thread); by moving on instead of responding to the stuff you're flagging, you make it easier to excise derails without having to either excise... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 7:45 AM on February 4, 2012
Yes, this is a problem, and yes, absolutely we'd prefer that people flag the post or just move on to something else, and we have been stepping up efforts to nix early threadshitting or Meta-type comments. For whatever reason, certain sites cause more angst (and thus more deraillery) than others, and Reddit is very high on that list, and it's sort of a pain for us because many people hate Reddit posts on MeFi, and many people love them, so there's pretty much always a clash about it.... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by taz at 12:14 AM on February 4, 2012
MetaTalk post: Why in hell was my comment deleted?
When stuff isn't clear, why over-moderate rather than under-moderate?

We try to make our best guesses. Last week, after we'd specifically dialed things back a little, there were quite a few "Why didn't you delete this??" MeTa threads and a bunch of emails. As I said above, we try to keep the community and the threads within them, running smoothly. And sometimes it's a judgment call figuring out whether deleting or leaving a comment will be... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 3:51 PM on February 3, 2012
Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by mods having other shit to do.

To be fair, sometimes when a thread starts to go badly [as that one did, which had nothing at all to do with jamjam's comment] we sometimes don't go back and look at the entire thread when we're just thinking "Man, this is a mess" So, a comment out on its own that didn't get picked up on might be a non-problem until such time as the thread ends up in MeTa... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 10:46 AM on February 3, 2012
I'm sorry, but I'm betting that your "reputation" is going to be more damaged by this metatalk thread than by deletion of your answer.
posted to MetaTalk by Grither at 9:59 AM on February 3, 2012
MetaTalk post: Tag, MeFi Mag is it or something else witty
We're from the internet and we're here to help
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 11:05 AM on February 3, 2012
MetaTalk post: That best answer deserves a favorite
What about the idea of tracking best answers in user profiles, much as favourites are tracked?

No. We are basically done with making it any easier for people to rank themselves against other people for any reason whatsoever.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 1:34 PM on February 2, 2012
MetaTalk post: Dating IS important
Because the intent is more "state your dilemma, get advice" and less "do live internet talk therapy". Askme's got a fairly specific form it's intended to take: ask a question, get answers. If there's something missing from the question as originally stated or some clarification folks need to answer confidently, it's totally fine for the asker to follow up with an occasional supplemental comment to get that stuff added/clarified, but it should be an occasional update, not... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 1:47 PM on February 1, 2012
There is also the very common XY Problem which is my favorite and I talk about it all the time driving everyone crazy, sort of like what OnTheLastCastle is talking about, but narrower. Basically you ask for help solving one thing which you think is causing the other thing. But you are wrong about that, or maybe just mistaken, and people don't deal with this gracefully. See also: how do I become okay with the open relationship my boyfriend wants to have (possible, but difficult), how do I put a... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 12:09 PM on February 1, 2012
Is this really a recurring issue?

People asking questions that are not phrased in ways that are liable to get them good answers is a recurring issue. Common failure modes are

- You are too angry/emotional to ask a good question and your question is more of a rant
- Your question is not a real question but more of a processing exercise and at the end of it you don't care what anyone thinks
- Your... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 11:54 AM on February 1, 2012
MetaTalk post: Scrollin'
Often we'll delete wall-of-text comments that people could have just as easily linked to. In this post specifically it mimics the [sort of ungreat] framing of the original post which is why we didn't delete it, to my mind. But it is a pretty annoying tactic and one that doesn't succeed often, so I'd suggest not presuming that wall-of-text comments will always remain inviolate.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 8:14 AM on January 28, 2012
MetaTalk post: Google buzz
That's what I said!
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 8:12 PM on January 27, 2012
There's a difference between 'telling people they shouldn't care' and saying 'this is not life or death. lighten up"

Sure, jonmc, and the thing that's frustrating isn't so much "hey, this is not a big deal" as a one-off aside if you think people are making too big a deal out of something and that gently deflating that will help a conversation improve. That's totally understandable and has a shot of being productive sometimes.... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 4:55 PM on January 27, 2012
Is this really an issue?

Yeah, it's really an issue. We don't moderate MetaTalk particularly heavily, and we don't close threads just because the principles seem to be done, but it's disruptive and obnoxious for people to use this as a general dumping ground for whatever floats through their head while we're actively having a serious policy discussion. There was a period of time where recipes were the mode of choice, and it got to be difficult to... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by restless_nomad at 1:52 PM on January 27, 2012
Is this really an issue?

Yeah it sort of is. Being That Guy who basically is always telling people either outwardly or via non sequiturs that you don't think they should care about something, in a fully optional space like MetaTalk becomes, over time, deeply annoying to a lot of people. I think there's a difference between "I'd like to talk about something slightly different" and "I am going to toss this random comment about my day in... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 1:52 PM on January 27, 2012
TBH that sounds a lot like you've ceded control to anyone willing to abuse the flag system. Which, it seems, is Blazecock and friends.

For butt's sake. We don't read every thread on the site top to bottom. I do not know if you believed for some reason that that was not the case, but it would be an impractical and mind-melting chore.

We have the flag system specifically so that people have a simple, lightweight way to bring... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 12:22 PM on January 27, 2012
With regards BP, when you delete conversations stemming from weird baity comments like this and this but leave the original comments standing it leaves an impression. From that and comments you've made towards me I'll happily say you give him special protection, whether you are aware of it or not.

And when we delete an exchange he's involved in where as a result someone else gets the last word, that also "creates an impression", something he's... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 11:52 AM on January 27, 2012
it does feel like he's your special boy that your sticking up for

I don't really give a fuck at this point if it feels like that to any given user regarding any given other user. It's flat out not the case, it's something we often as not get accused of simultaneously from both sides of disputes about the other side, and it's facile and insulting.

There's something like ten thousand people here on a regular basis. Almost none... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 10:49 AM on January 27, 2012
MetaTalk post: Everybody Has One
Metatalk isn't for thanking people for favorites. If you want to talk about why your answer was deleted, please contact us.
posted to MetaTalk by taz at 11:04 PM on January 26, 2012
Ask MeFi post: What word processor handles foreign languages well?
I write in both English and Swedish in the same document, using both Word 2010 and Open Office, and both of them do a fairly good job of auto-sensing the language you are using and applying the correct spelling dictionary.

In Word, this requires "enabling" the languages you want to use, and checking the "detect language automatically" checkbox. It also requires that you have spelling dictionaries for the languages you are using.... [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by gemmy at 2:19 PM on January 26, 2012
MetaTalk post: You should knock off the sermons
TRIPLE PLAY
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 8:31 PM on January 24, 2012
Projects post: Meme Pool
Trivia: Memepool was created by Metafilter's own joshu, which inspired the personal bookmarking site Muxway, which turned into Del.icio.us.
posted to MetaFilter Projects by waxpancake at 7:45 AM on January 22, 2012
MetaTalk post: Bring the JoePa fighting here, y'all
Count no mod happy until the MeTa is closed.

Huh? No, people have to just not behave like assholes in the MeFi thread just because to them personally the death of this person is very very important in either a good way or a bad way. We understand that there are a lot of tough aspects to the death of this polarizing figure but that doesn't mean that the gloves are off and people can just holler at each other in the MeFi thread. I don't know why this... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 10:39 AM on January 22, 2012
MetaTalk post: Flags
Not really, no.

It's basically asking us to add public negative voting, and doing that would open up a huge can of worms and result in all sorts of unintended consequences (I'm sure the next request would be auto-delete for anything with >10 flags).

The way the system works is basically like a suggestion box at a business. You point out stuff you don't like, we consider it all and act on it or discuss it and determine if we shouldn't act on... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 2:59 PM on January 20, 2012
No, not something we intend to ever do. The idea has come up before, and I totally get where it's coming from because I have that same numbers-are-interesting instinct, but it's something we've thought through and the feeling is that making that data explicitly visible wouldn't solve any extant problems and would likely create an extra layer of distracting sideshow to the discussions that happen around deletions and non-deletions.

If someone's ever specifically curious... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 2:59 PM on January 20, 2012
MeFi post: achievements.unlocked();
METAFILTER ACHIEVEMENTS

5 Bucks For 2 Cents
Post a comment on Metafilter
Uncharted Waters
Make your first FPP
Metafilter's Own
Be mentioned in a FPP
We Are Legion
Post an anonymous Ask Metafilter
Down The Memory Hole
Have a comment deleted
Essayist
Post a comment with more than 500 words
Logorrhea
Post a comment with... [more]
posted to MetaFilter by clorox at 9:03 PM on January 19, 2012
MetaTalk post: SOPA/PIPA blackout
I just had a long and frustrating talk with Leahy's staffer in Vermont. They repeated the "foreign sites" line to which I responded that the overly-broad language makes no such assurances. They said "I know websites like Google are telling people to call us..." and I said no, I'd read the legislation and I had some concerns and I've been on record as writing Leahy several times in the past. I talked about the DNS provisions and how I feels that it breaks the internet and I... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 11:12 AM on January 18, 2012
MeFi post: "Maybe I should finally mention WOOL..."
Good point on the conversion! I'll have to recommend that.

And I haven't had any inquiries, no. And I would listen to any offer, but then probably turn it down. I have friends at big publishers, and their experiences terrify me. Something about someone else owning my story feels wrong. I had a book published by a small press (my first novel), and I have nothing but love for that publisher, but I eventually bought the rights back. It stressed me out to have someone else... [more]
posted to MetaFilter by Hugh Howey at 4:40 PM on January 16, 2012
MetaTalk post: Pearls Before Swine
If you are starting a new metatalk thread just to point out that a comment you made several months ago did not get as many favorites as you wanted, you should probably recalibrate your "should I be posting?" meter.
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 6:12 PM on January 13, 2012
MetaTalk post: Blackout
I dislike the SOPA legislation greatly, I think it's really bad law, written to protect Hollywood's dying business models. Last month we helped draw attention to it by censoring out our logo and making that a link to the stop SOPA site with more info and ways to contact your senators & representatives. That is pretty much the only way to actually help steer this law away from happening. One of my senators in Oregon helped combat it and he lead the filibuster against SOPA.... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 8:54 PM on January 10, 2012
I seriously want to spend my golden years getting hauled off to jail for doing copyright civil disobedience like playing a movie at the library and listing the title in the newspaper, or showing a movie at the community center using our library's license, or scanning a book from the fifties and making the digital copy available for checkout online, or showing library patrons how to burn a CD to their laptop or copy an audiobook MP3, or making our library databases available... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 2:01 PM on January 11, 2012
Every link in every post would have to be vetted for copyright violations prior to being posted.

Or we'd ignore the stupid unenforcable law and say "Take us to jail you fucking idiots, you broke the internet and I'd be happy to be a test care for this nonsense not getting any further than it does right now" which is the path I'd be going down personally. There are many ways to take useful stands against terrible pending legislation. This is... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 1:33 PM on January 11, 2012
MetaTalk post: Do AskMe answers that have a lot of Favorites get weighted differently in Google searches? Should they be?
Yeah, it's a touch chatty but didn't get flagged much and people ran with it. The grey areas between Totally Totally Fine and Totally Totally Chatmonster are rife with iniquity and confusion.
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 1:10 PM on January 11, 2012
MetaTalk post: deletions
Could I just request, as one MeFite to the community, that we not use Metatalk as a place to resurrect deleted threads as zombies (i.e. provide answers to deleted questions)? Let the dead rest.
posted to MetaTalk by Scientist at 11:26 PM on January 10, 2012
The OP can ask a question about dealing with social anxiety in regards to women, or ask how to maximize his chances of meeting women who would be interested in him, or any number of questions that may be useful to him, but asking if women care about personality isn't an answerable question beyond "people are different."
posted to MetaTalk by taz at 10:01 PM on January 10, 2012
MetaTalk post: DNS Trouble
This is what happens when cortex shaves his head. Mass chaos. Cats marrying dogs. DNS servers going the way of the Dodo.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 5:33 PM on January 7, 2012
MetaTalk post: I don't have kids, but I DO have your answer...
would the out-of-bounds answers have been deleted?

Not usually, no. I mean it's a judgment call and one of the things we'd have to deal with on a case by case basis. We had one that I remember recently where someone was asking for a certain kind of movie and was looking only for PG or lower ratings and the movies suggested were a lot of R-rated stuff and a lot of "I don't know what the rating is but..." stuff which was agitating both to the... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 10:32 AM on December 31, 2011
Yeah, I think there are bad examples of this happening, but this one didn't seem to be one of those to me. I see it as sort of an XY problem, people ask a narrow question feeling that it's the best way to get the answers that they want, but it may not be. People who actually read the question and think they understand the outcome the OP is looking for answer anyhow even if it doesn't meet the criteria. Usually it works out okay, sometimes it goes badly.

More importantly,... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 8:19 AM on December 31, 2011
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