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MetaTalk post: Occupy that area over there, out of peoples' way.
Nothing personal, but getting the news out sort if isn't what MetaFilter is for. If people are going to be talking at length about Occupy stuff, we'd like to try to funnel that into a few active threads so that every bit of Occupy news isn't split across a ton of threads and we don't wind up with an Occupy MeFi situation.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 11:24 AM on November 19, 2011
We generally funnel topics into single threads so that the conversation stays coherent, and so that the front page doesn't get cluttered with a lot of unnecessary posts.

Also, the point of Metafilter is not to get news out. There are lots of better places to do that, anyway.
posted to MetaTalk by koeselitz at 11:23 AM on November 19, 2011
Because Metafilter is not designed nor intended to get news out - we really don't want the front page to edge towards a single topic, and OWS is definitely pushing it that way. We'll periodically let solid, larger-scale or major-development posts live to prevent any one from getting too out of hand, but we're going to kill most of the more repetitive ones.
posted to MetaTalk by restless_nomad at 11:23 AM on November 19, 2011
MetaTalk post: PopSciFilter
You're totally welcome to flag stuff that's kind of crap and even more welcome to use the contact form to tell us why something is crap - between all of us, the mod team has a whole bunch of random knowledge, but we're not going to be able to distinguish good from bad on every subject ever.

That said, the kinds of detailed, in-depth comments that begin "I happen to study [x] and here's the real story behind this" are super popular and arise... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by restless_nomad at 12:15 PM on November 18, 2011
MetaTalk post: Take your time
What do we lose by doing this?

The biggest downside is that it breaks basic expectations about how comments on a site work. When that's one of the core functions of a site, that means a hell of a lot of potential friction and a need for a bunch of on-going user education and a need to figure out overtly or not to signpost the YOU CANNOT COMMENT YET, IT'S NOTHING PERSONAL AND IT'S ALSO NOT A BUG thing for every thread its active in.... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 9:24 AM on November 16, 2011
MetaTalk post: threadshitters, trolls, and FPPs in general
I really feel like 'threaded comments' needs to be revisited at some point. A lot of behavior that annoys people here would basically go away if we had it.

Threading doesn't make obnoxious behavior go away, it just hides it in branches, makes conversations-as-a-whole harder to have and to read, makes following a conversation as it develops in real time nightmarish to parse, and as a side effect means the same stupid derail can happen six times instead... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 10:18 AM on November 14, 2011
MetaTalk post: MeFi is getting gamed.
So, good morning.

The big reason we're hard on self-promotion on Metafilter—not just the robotic v1agr4 spam that everybody in the universe agrees is bad but even Go Check Out My Stuff plugs that some other sites are totally fine with—is that it mucks up the character of the site in a way we think is bad for this place. When people are posting stuff because they have a promotional self-interest or are being paid to do so by their employer or client, they don't show the... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 7:46 AM on November 12, 2011
MetaTalk post: I gots a rep. to protect, man.
If they were intended as a bookmarking system why were they not called bookmarks?

That's what IE was calling bookmarks way back when. It's really easy to morning-after-quarterback the whole thing and we've gone on record as saying we wish we had done that, but it's not happening now, though some nice person can probably write you a greasemonkey script for it, but it will also render conversations like this unintelligible.

We... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 6:18 PM on November 10, 2011
Matt originally envisioned them as a personal bookmarking system and then he made the step of calling them "favorites."

So, despite how he sort of saw them in his head, it turned into more of a ranking system then we would have wanted and a hot button enough topic that we've sort of resisted any more attempts to quantify or otherwise metricize them. I use them to both indicate stuff I liked [good jokes mostly] but also stuff I want to mention on the podcast... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 5:56 PM on November 10, 2011
It's a big topic.

The very short version is that the original intent was explicitly as a bookmarking feature; the name "favorites" was actually taken as a reference to the IE bookmarking feature. In practice it has some loosely-endorsed utility as an aggregate "here are some interesting things" identifier in the Popular Favorites page and feed, but beyond that we have zero official take on what they mean.

Folks have pretty... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 5:55 PM on November 10, 2011
MetaTalk post: Anonymous Questions Update
Is there a mechanism in place now to check on the reasoning? Do mods email you if you submit an anonymous question?

By default we don't even know who you are, so we can't email you. Folks sometimes write to us wondering if it's been a few days and their question didn't go through, and we can follow up with them. Short of that, if there's a real head-scratcher and we don't approve it and we never hear anything, we leave it at that and hope the asker... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 3:52 PM on November 9, 2011
People are going to, as always, have to trust us. We hope that knowing that we know the reason even if they don't, may help with that.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 3:44 PM on November 9, 2011
MetaTalk post: Gotta say it was a good day?
Days where seriously nothing is annoying or frustrating or anything are super rare, and I think pretty much only ever a quiet Sunday where everybody is either out in the sunshine or still sleeping off Saturday.

That said, there's plenty of days, most of them really, where the site is more of a neat place bumps and all than a place that I think of as a pile of grief. The bumps keep me interested, the nice emergent community stuff and cool posts and... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 6:23 PM on November 8, 2011
Not lately, no.

But really there are a lot of good days where things went right, there was a fun thread somewhere, people were exceptionally helpful or decent to each other, cortex or I told each other a hilarious joke on IM, we banned someone who was truly horrible, someone who had been having a hard time either got better or decided to take some time off (in a good sort of way), we get contact form email that is a shot in the arm, someone at a meetup buys us a beer,... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 6:08 PM on November 8, 2011
MetaTalk post: Verboten Schmoten
I created it because I perceived a bias in the moderation which, cumulatively, could hurt the value of MetaFilter as a vehicle of human progression.

I'm going to basically reiterate what jessamyn said and suggest that you are maybe treating Metafilter as a vehicle for something that it is not. This is first and foremost a place for folks to share interesting things they found on the web with one another. It's fine to want to share something you think... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 10:02 PM on November 6, 2011
MetaTalk post: MetaFilter: erudite dialog
It's not that French words are any more foreign than other words, it's that they strike a culturally convenient balance. The words are conspicuous as not-English in the clustering of their vowels and consonants, but not so unapproachable as to defy casual parsing; pronunciation is exotic, but not so exotic that one can't have a go at it; the words themselves may be unfamiliar but the characters that make them up are, setting aside the stray ornamental cedilla or accent mark, comfortable in a... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 4:37 PM on November 4, 2011
MetaTalk post: 200,00 AskMe Questions
Four MIIIIILLLLION comments!
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 11:28 AM on November 3, 2011
Hey cool -- I think we hit 4 million comments over the weekend too, maybe Josh can track down which one the 4 millionth was, if he hasn't already.
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 11:25 AM on November 3, 2011
MetaTalk post: One of these things is not (apparently) like the other.
Often I find that posting a "Hey what about the other side of the story like this or this or this. Don't you think that also adds to this situation we're seeing?" and adding a bunch of links can come across as not unfriendly and can spur useful discussion instead of seeming like a "I don't like this" sort of comment. So you don't attack the person making the post, you don't just show up int he thread saying "I don't like this" you look like you're interested in... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 8:16 AM on November 1, 2011
Not really. Editorializing is the assertion of an opinion in the body of a post, not the assertion of a fact.

The front-page-of-mefi formulation of editorializing is as much about the injection of personal narrative into a post as it is about the injection of personal opinion; we need folks to try not to use the front page as a place to soapbox in a policy-position sense and we also need them to try not to use it as essentially a personal chatroom.... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 6:24 AM on November 1, 2011
MetaTalk post: Steve Jobs obit threads
I subscribe to the same line of thinking, for what it's worth. We keep the user notes type stuff we do to a minimum, and it lives off on a separate part of the admin interface, and is mostly keeping track of spam-related stuff, because even as mods we don't want to have every interaction we have be essentially "oh that's THAT user" if we can help it.

But at the end of the day, I'm okay with people using whatever they need to make it possible for them to find a... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 7:10 PM on October 31, 2011
I wonder idly what it would take for Artw to stop with his constant stream of passive-aggressive bullshit. Worlds would need to collide. Something grand like that.

I would like it for Artw to show better restraint about some of this stuff. I would like it for you to show better restraint about this stuff as well. I've talked to both of you about it before. Making obnoxious comments about comments you think are obnoxious is, itself, obnoxious and... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 1:32 PM on October 31, 2011
The other one, which was dialed way back and along a different line entirely, was also deleted.

It was this: "He supported closed systems, and the walled garden. He ran one of the wealthiest corporations in the world, charged what he wanted, and took no prisoners. And... he's gone now. My condolences to the friends and family who knew him. For the rest of us, life goes on."

I can't believe the second one... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 1:13 PM on October 31, 2011
Definitely the latter. I realize that my first comment was not well-received, but I can't believe the second one was removed simply because I failed to praise Jobs sufficiently.

The second one where you were beefing in-thread about the deletion of the first one? How much you were or weren't praising Jobs certainly was not why it got deleted, no. I'd guess (lucky me, traveling that day) that your third one got deleted because folks on the mod team... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 1:06 PM on October 31, 2011
Huh, it's been my experience that anything less than glowing praise/hagiography about him was being deleted. Are we allowing dissent again?

Eideteker, I don't know if this is one of your "I'm helping through hyperbole!" moments or one of your "I am actually clearly stating what I believe" moments. Assuming for the sake of discussion it's the latter, that's a way off the mark.

That people being assholish... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 10:44 AM on October 31, 2011
it's been my experience that anything less than glowing praise/hagiography about him was being deleted. Are we allowing dissent again?

Here is the place to talk about this. I am sick of people acting like this is us having some sort of issue with people not being totally fawning/glowing about the subject of an obit or obit-like thread. Eidetecker, your comment was

"Wow, can't wait to watch the fanboys fall all over... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 10:42 AM on October 31, 2011
I left a note in the eulogy thread and people can knock that shit off right now. I've pretty much had it with "you guys are liking a thing so I'll show up just to hate it and not interact with either the content of the link or the other people contributing in the thread" contributions. It's lazy and it's taking advantage of our generally light moderation policies to threadshit. And just to head people off at the pass, it's totally fine to have a critique of Jobs, his policies, his... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 8:55 AM on October 31, 2011
MetaTalk post: halloween fun
Also...your generous use of "well it was flagged so it got deleted". How many flags has this thread received?

The flags, as we've always said, alert us to the fact that there are people directing our attention towards something. At that point, we can take a look at something to see if something needs to be done. A lot of flags that pile up quickly is often an indication that people really dislike a post, or it needs fixing, or something. At... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 4:51 PM on October 30, 2011
It pretty much depends on jessamyn's mood.

Ha, if only. If things depended on my mood and my mood were the deciding factor, this place would be a lot different.

It's fine to ask why something is here and why something isn't. We'll try to reply and give you an honest, if possibly jokey, answer. An open thread on a touchy topic on a Saturday night after we'd banned one person per night for acting out in MeTa the two nights... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 1:43 PM on October 30, 2011
Maybe if the mods were a bit more consistent with their policing, there wouldn't be hordes of people asking why stuff was deleted, why stuff is ok, or not ok...and general shit like that.

Or maybe people here are, for all their other fine qualities, sometimes on the high-maintenance side, and maybe people are in any case inclined in general to grouse now and then about perceived inconsistencies or personal injustices?

And maybe... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 1:41 PM on October 30, 2011
MetaTalk post: Mixed Messages
I love the way the mods work together. I would give a lot to have the people at my work have the same community spirit. I hope that it stays that way here for a long time.
posted to MetaTalk by Quonab at 11:45 PM on October 28, 2011
Instead of turning off metatalk posts for fridays, how about just making a little more friction: an extra page to click through that says something like "hey, if this can wait until monday, we'd appreciate it if you let us relax a bit on the weekend"
posted to MetaTalk by aubilenon at 10:11 PM on October 28, 2011
I have to say it. Sorry. But I really dislike the idea of "junior" moderators. If Matt chose someone to be a moderator then I hope we can treat them all with equal respect. Thank you.
posted to MetaTalk by taff at 8:22 PM on October 28, 2011
Sure, but respect is a different matter than rank, however informal.

The only workplace culture I ever tolerated and ever will is a flat one. Everyone is on the same level as employees, so I'd hope others would follow my lead on that. There are no real juniors and seniors, we all talk to each other and come to decisions collectively.
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 8:41 PM on October 28, 2011
MetaTalk post: When is a self link not a self link/
It just seems like a weird black hole because I can't post it in 'Projects' since it's not my project, but since I'm friends with the people involved I can't main page it.

Life is tricky this way, yeah. What you can do is suggest to your friends that they get a metafilter account, and then they can make a Projects post like anyone else. Ethical and agentive dilemmas resolved! Just make sure they understand how not to get themselves in trouble and... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 9:03 AM on October 28, 2011
MetaTalk post: Do Best Answers affect AskMe life?
I thought about that, but I had no idea if the time-of-Best-Answer-marking was tracked.

Oh ho! That's a good point. It's certainly not expressed in the Infodump files; I can't recall offhand if that's actually tracked in the db itself or if we just flip a bit when it happens and leave it at that. But that does throw a wrench in the gears a bit, yes.

No, as is so often the case, the statistics alone wouldn't tell the... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 7:51 AM on October 28, 2011
MetaTalk post: Hyperbole and a barf
I fill refute me being a troll and so on.

Troll is a tricky word because it's so overloaded and what people mean by it depends a lot on personal perspective and local context and what you think matters in terms of intent vs. effect, etc. So, let's not dwell on troll here, arguing about the word won't get us anywhere.

What can be said more generally here, and what a few folks have tried to get at, is that your behavior in that... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 8:41 PM on October 27, 2011
This is a cash based log in. If we want to play games, point me to the rules I've broken

We don't really roll like that. Our primary rule is "don't be an asshole", which it's pretty clear you're having some trouble with here. As Jessamyn said, if that doesn't work for you it's easy enough to give you a refund.
posted to MetaTalk by restless_nomad at 8:49 PM on October 27, 2011
No-one here is ok with psycho-dynamic therapy?.

Cheradine Zakalwe we're not really seeing the requisite "Oh I get it" part of the conversation we'd like to be seeing from you at this point. We're all human so it's possible we've all gotten off on the wrong foot tonight. We're going to give you a day off and you can come back tomorrow and try again, but not here in this thread and not in the MeFi thread. You are welcome to work on "not... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 9:14 PM on October 27, 2011
#1 This is a cash based log in. If we want to play games, point me to the rules I've broken

If you would like your money back, you are welcome to it and we can call it a day. If you're interested in getting along here and figuring out how to successfully be a part of this community, see above. We actually go pretty far out of our way to be accommodating to folks who are making a serious effort to be part of this place, but step one is actually making... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 8:58 PM on October 27, 2011
@cortex, that's fine. However, I do not feel that I have in actuality trolled or been disingenuous in any way.

What you feel you did and the impression you have actually given are deeply at odds. That may strike you as unjust, but we're on a community site with ten thousand members, not in your kitchen or on your personal blog: what you think should be is a drop in the bucket under the circumstances, and if you're really interested in being here and... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 8:50 PM on October 27, 2011
Miko ... I've lurked for a while now.

About a year.


Then I'd like to politely suggest lurking a little more. I totally get that it's tough having strong feelings and watching a thread go off in a direction that makes you crabby. But you basically took over that thread, were really sort of a shitty to a lot of people who were talking about difficult stuff and didn't stop until we made you stop.

Being a... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 8:42 PM on October 27, 2011
MetaTalk post: Even less okay.
I donno why this metatalk thread wasn't deleted, or preferably heavily edited, given it's phrasing as a personal attack.

Well heavily edited is right out; we just don't edit posts, period, aside from the odd cosmetic error. As a personal callout I think it was presented kind of poorly, but whether it was going to get out of hand or not was hard to say and we were waiting to see what happened. People managed to not flip out, some discussion ensued,... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 6:07 PM on October 26, 2011
MetaTalk post: Did you actually read the question?
I'm totally in favor of teaching people to ask better questions at the same time. Often questions, especially about emotional issues, are full of a lot of extraneous details or ranting that answerers focus on at the expense of whatever question the OP was actually trying to get answered.

Also we have people who seem to answer a lot of AskMe questions on their phone without reading a lot of the existing answers and without capitalizing or punctuating or hyperlinking URLs... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 11:18 AM on October 21, 2011
I agree that this is a "force of nature." Yes, people SHOULD read carefully and completely before posting, but they won't. So, ultimately, discussions like this can go one of two ways. Either, they can become debates about who has the moral upper hand or they can be constructive attempts to solve the problem. There's nothing wrong with the former, as we all need to vent. But it bores me, so I won't comment on it, other than to repeat: yup, people who read carefully and completely are... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by grumblebee at 11:12 AM on October 21, 2011
MetaTalk post: Correcting assumptions in AskMe?
But should the question be posted here in the first place? AskMe is a great resource, sure. But it's also part of the MeFi community, and I think it's acceptable for a community to say, "We disapprove of what you're doing for legal and/or moral reasons, and we're not going to tolerate it in this community."

There are differing philosophies on this. From an approving-anonymous-questions perspective, we try to be on the permissive side about... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 12:42 PM on October 19, 2011
Suppose he's actually an axe-murderer. Suppose the asker is really the boyfriend. Suppose Matt Haughey is actually cooperating in an FBI sting.

Suppositions can go in all sorts of directions for all sorts of reasons; this is part of why we pretty much want folks to decide to engage with the actual questions asked or go do something else if that's something they can't stick to, because the green is supposed to be about helping people find answers to the questions... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by cortex at 12:26 PM on October 19, 2011
Early comments, and early deletions, affect the way threads develop

This is actually exactly why we do this, both in AskMe and with early threadhsitting type comments in MeFi. We'd like people to have a chance to have a discussion or to get answers to their question without people turning it into what they want to talk about at the expense of the question. I get where people are coming from completely and understand that this sort of question sets... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by jessamyn at 10:58 AM on October 19, 2011
Early comments, and early deletions, affect the way threads develop

True, but in the 12 years I've run the site I've found that early comments are much more important to how a thread will go than later ones, and an early off-topic derail will kill almost any useful conversation that might have followed, so we have a higher bar for first comments.

I'd still delete this derail if it was comment #30, but starting off a question... [more]
posted to MetaTalk by mathowie at 10:50 AM on October 19, 2011
Oh, a MeTa about deletions. How refreshing.
posted to MetaTalk by absalom at 10:27 AM on October 19, 2011
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