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Derailed conversation
June 9, 2006 12:49 PM   Subscribe

Once again Dios derails an interesting conversation, and makes it all about him, by claiming that the post about an emerging media trend which may be redefining the word "terrorism" is worthless and stupid.
posted by y6y6y6 to Etiquette/Policy at 12:49 PM (205 comments total)

Again, Dios doesn't like the conversation, so it needs to be derailed and we need to spend time handling his troll rather than continuing the interesting conversation.

All of us see posts here every day that we think are pretty worthless. We (the vast majority of users) don't go in and try to pee on them. And if we (as individual users) did this over and over, we'd be banned.

Okay. I get it. For some reason the contributions Dios makes in the form of narrow focus legal PDF posts and warmed over Fox News talking points has been deemed so valuable that it justifies him trolling threads he finds "not worthy". I think that's dumb, but so be it. Can I at least get a response from Dios about why he feels his opinion is so valuable that it gives him the right to derail threads in this manner? We are all told, over and over, that MetaTalk is the place to fight these battles, and yet he, and he alone, is allowed to turn the blue thread into his MetaTalk forum.

Why does he feel so entitled?
posted by y6y6y6 at 12:49 PM on June 9, 2006 [1 favorite]


well people keep giving him that sweet sweet attention. I'd be interrested to see a timeline of how often meTa posts are made by, or about him.
posted by edgeways at 12:51 PM on June 9, 2006


...
posted by cortex at 12:53 PM on June 9, 2006


What, this again?
posted by Floydd at 12:55 PM on June 9, 2006


dios is not exactly a troll, more of a contrarian. Not a very interesting one, at that.
posted by signal at 12:56 PM on June 9, 2006


Classic example of selective attention. smackfu had essentially the same exchange -- and it started earlier in the thread -- and lo, there is no smackfu callout.

(And there shoudn't be.)
posted by cortex at 12:59 PM on June 9, 2006


What signal said.

Yaaawwwwnnn.
posted by Zozo at 12:59 PM on June 9, 2006


dios was right about the post. It's at best a weak post that belongs on a personal blog.

Don't let that ruin a good pitchforking, though.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 1:00 PM on June 9, 2006


"well people keep giving him that sweet sweet attention."

Exactly. This is the nature of a troll. They have a talent for making people play their game.

For example, Dios joins an active conversation by saying, "Is this an actual post?". This isn't a serious question. Surely Dios is a smart person with enough experience here to know that bad posts get deleted every day, and if you *actually* want to help a post get deleted the best way to help that along is to flag it. Indeed, he's been given a timeout before for doing something like this. And on top of that he's had many MeTa call outs where he got zero administrative love, and plnty of scorn. So the *only* logical reason to post "Is this an actual post?" there would be as a troll.
posted by y6y6y6 at 1:03 PM on June 9, 2006


Is it no longer protocol to flag or MeTa poor posts? Or are these sort of sarcastic in-thread post critiques OK now?

Because I still have a lot of sarcasm to use up.
posted by sonofsamiam at 1:05 PM on June 9, 2006


I think you're blowing his comments in that thread way out of proportion. I agree with him, really. Like I said in thread, it's kind of a crap post about an interesting topic. A news story, a Wiki link and a Google News search don't really give us much.

on preview: what mr_crash_davis beat me to it.
posted by brundlefly at 1:05 PM on June 9, 2006


what
posted by brundlefly at 1:06 PM on June 9, 2006


What cortex said. Smackfu makes essentially the same comment, no one engages him and the comment dies. dios does, he's engaged and reponds completely appropriately, because he was engaged, and he gets called into MeTa.

I'm not sure you can have it both ways. Either leave him alone in the thread or leave him alone in MeTa (at least in this instance). I'm not saying I'm not sick of threads always being about dios, I'm just not convinced he's the only person making them so.
posted by OmieWise at 1:06 PM on June 9, 2006


There is perhaps a bit of a false dilemma here. It may not be a great post, but what is stopping him from airing his problems with it through the mechanisms the rest of us are expected to use?
posted by Mr. Six at 1:14 PM on June 9, 2006


dios dios dios
dios dios song

dios dios dios
dios all day long...
posted by kosem at 1:14 PM on June 9, 2006 [1 favorite]




Meh, drama queens will be. I think he's still sore over "Fat law."
posted by mullingitover at 1:17 PM on June 9, 2006


"dios is not exactly a troll, more of a contrarian."

I see your point, but I disagree.

For example, I am a contrarian and I'm willing to argue any point which is counter to something held as a given by someone else. But Dios is very selective about his trolling.

"Smackfu makes essentially the same comment, no one engages him and the comment dies. dios does, he's engaged"

So......... We need to give Dios a pass because Smackfu wasn't able to derail the thread? I'm confused. How is it unfair to not call out both? Smackfu didn't *actually* derail the thread. Dios did. You seem to be saying that since we don't smack down the trolls who are easily ignored, we then can't do anything about the trolls who actually derail things. That seems like a bad policy to me.
posted by y6y6y6 at 1:17 PM on June 9, 2006


I guess he was extra right about that post mr_crash_davis. It tooks three comments for him to make his point.

As for other commenters who didn't think the FPP was meaty enough, I kind of agree (hence my cursory Lakoff link, since he's written a fair amount about this type of stuff). But cortex, the difference is le dieu does this all. the. freakin'. time.

But let me go ahead and condense the entirety of this thread:

Dios Defense Force members are alerted via the Dios Signal (TM), and promptly rush to Meta 12050 to denounce y6y6y6 and anyone who agrees with him, like this humble mefite, as so ideologically blinded that they'll jump on dios no matter what.

If I gave a fuck any longer, or if I had any faith that Matthowie gave a shit about being consistent in his moderation, I'd state that just chilling out and sticking to making FPP's and commenting in threads where he doesn't have an axe to grind would be good policy for him, and for anyone else for that matter.

Then quonsar comes along and says something only he finds funny. Then EB comes along and takes seven paragraphs to state the obvious. Then languagehat comes along and congratulates EB on being an intellectual peer, so far above the chatty rabble. Then I say something about how my perception of many of you is that you need girl and/or boyfriends. Then monju_bosatsu comes along and says I don't defend dios, I just carry his water for him unto perpetuity. Someone will tell me I should eat a bag of cocks.

And at the very, very end of this thread, which won't finish up completely until Monday afternoon, y2karl will come along and say something cryptic about a mefite who hasn't posted here since 2002. And all the while, dios will get his jollies reading all this shit through the weekend and thinking once again he's "won" mefi, because he's only capable of seeing this place in terms of warfare (how Lakoffian of me...).

And there'll be some jpgs and stuff.

Sorry y6y6y6, you can't win. I used to think the "paper trail" theory was the best strategy for dealing with le dieu, but since his most abrasive and/or offensive comments are deleted by his editors, i.e., the mefi mods, it won't stick. Ignore him. It's hard to do, but it's all you cano do.

But anyways, man, Ecuador is beating Poland! That's pretty crazy!
posted by bardic at 1:18 PM on June 9, 2006 [5 favorites]


Oh the sky is falling! Someone used this thing I like in a way I don't like! Whatever shall I do?!?
posted by Captaintripps at 2:03 PM on June 9, 2006



posted by monju_bosatsu at 2:06 PM on June 9, 2006


That post IS worthless and stupid. I marked it as a favorite just so I can acrchive it as a perfect example of WHAT A POST HERE SHOULD NOT BE.

This bears repeating:

It's some random observation based on a survey of google news. It doesn't meet any metric of what a post should be. It's just a random observation made by the user and using Metafilter to broadcast that observation.

To top it off, the axe you're grinding is pointless. What, are you expecting a serious argument from someone who doesn't think the word "terrorism" has been hijacked? It's just lazy fucking navel gazing, is what it is. It speaks poorly of the state of this community, IMO, that it is so vigorously defended.
posted by mkultra at 2:08 PM on June 9, 2006


If dios were a troll, he'd pop in, make an inflamatory comment and pop out again. THe fact that he stays in thread and defends his unpopular (and not especially interesting or articulate) opinions makes him a non-troll, IMO.
posted by signal at 2:08 PM on June 9, 2006


bardic writes "And there'll be some jpgs and stuff."
Ok, not a jpg but I'll kick it off:

posted by mullingitover at 2:09 PM on June 9, 2006


We need to give Dios a pass because Smackfu wasn't able to derail the thread? I'm confused. How is it unfair to not call out both? Smackfu didn't *actually* derail the thread. Dios did.

Okay. Forgive me, this will be long, but that's the nature of the beast—behold the actual events in question, distilled into the two subtopics (a la dios and smackfu, respectively) that occurred.




First, smackfu. 3 posts by the man himself, three responses, substance of his post a snarky dismissal of the post.


I am outraged the media isn't consistent with their terminology. This is a problem that really needs to be addressed.

Seriously, who gives a shit?
posted by smackfu at 10:29 AM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


Seriously, who gives a shit?

Actually, I do. I don't want to see the 'War on Terrorism' to become the new 'War on (some) Drugs.' But then again, it may already be too late.
posted by elwoodwiles at 10:32 AM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


This would be a good blog post.
posted by smackfu at 10:41 AM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


This would be a good blog post.

Go for it, smackfu.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 11:03 AM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


"Seriously, who gives a shit?"

I do. There have been high school kids charged with making terrorist threats for just writing a story, and here you have a plot that is uncovered that fits any definition of terrorism I've ever seen.
posted by 2sheets at 11:39 AM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


I am outraged the media isn't consistent with their terminology. This is a problem that really needs to be addressed.

Though you were being facetious, you're correct. Robert Fisk recently noted that according to newspapers, Israelis are killed by "attacks" while Palestinians are killed in "clashes" - the latter is much more neutral. "Attack" implies innocent bystander, while "clash" implies that, well, if you're going to get into a clash, you deserve what you get. The words papers choose often end up defining the arguement.
posted by QuietDesperation at 11:50 AM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]




Next, dios. 3 comments by the man himself, 9 total, substance of comment basically identical to smackfu's.


Is this an actual post?
posted by dios at 11:26 AM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


As opposed to what, dios? An imaginary post?
posted by Meatbomb at 11:39 AM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


As opposed to what, dios? An imaginary post?
posted by Meatbomb at 1:39 PM CST on June 9

As opposed to just a random observation?
posted by dios at 11:50 AM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


As opposed to just a random observation?

Yeah, well. The last time liberals trotted out a "random observation" pulled from the headlines, they were bitching that a black man was captioned as "looting" while white people were "finding." Nevermind that the first photographer watched the black guy steal, while the second photographer couldn't vouch for how the white folks got their stuff: According to liberals, we should either slander white people or forgive thieves who are black. It's sort of like the McDonald's hot coffee lawsuit: People wanted the story to make their point, so they ignored inconvenient details.
posted by cribcage at 12:00 PM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


cribcage: I'm not sure I follow you. I wasn't making any point like that.

I was making the point that I can't believe this is a post. It's some random observation based on a survey of google news. It doesn't meet any metric of what a post should be. It's just a random observation made by the user and using Metafilter to broadcast that observation. It's like Metafilter as Seinfeld: "What's the deal with those little chocolates hotels leave on your pillow?"

I can't seriously believe that this passes muster as a post.
posted by dios at 12:06 PM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


I can't seriously believe that this passes muster as a post.

Not only does it pass muster as a post, thanks in large part to you it's a post with 40 comments!

The irony just OOZES from this thread! Of course, that always happens when you have a post from a user whose handle starts with 'N'. You know those N-handle guys, always with the irony.
posted by gurple at 12:09 PM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


Dios complains about the form of a post with a pro-liberal bent. Insists he knows what's best for metafilter. Film at 11.
posted by delmoi at 12:24 PM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


Hey Dios, I got an Idea! When you run MF, you get to decide what is or is not a post unilaterally, till then suck it up.... M'kay?

I personally think some FPPs are uninteresting as well. Guess what!?!?!? I DON"T READ THEM! That seems to work for me, but your mileage obviously varies.
posted by Elim at 12:38 PM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


I agree, dios. Pretty weak post, but a good post could have been made on this subject. It needed to be fleshed out.
posted by brundlefly at 12:43 PM PST on June 9 [+fave] [!]




Note that, aside from these comments, the thread continued apace after the fact. That is the scope and damage of the derail dios apparently accomplished—a brief back and forth, comparable in length and tone to smackfu's exchange, around and after which the thread continued without difficulty.

That's why (a) the derail freakout is a wild overreaction and (b) the notion that calling out dios and not smackfu (or, closer to my heart, calling out either at all in this case) is bullshit driven by selective attention.
posted by cortex at 2:14 PM on June 9, 2006 [1 favorite]


Actually, this makes a sort of fun game.

1. Take any post that shows (or purports to show) conservatives doing something stupid, or the MSM behaving in a non-liberal way.

2. Guess how dios will try and derail the post from the topic.

3. Watch ensuing successful derail.

4. Read about derail in dios-centric MeTa post.

5. Cry self to sleep at night.

Try ignoring posts that don't address the issues, people.
posted by graventy at 2:15 PM on June 9, 2006


Can't we all just get along, and look at pictures of doggies?
posted by blue_beetle at 2:20 PM on June 9, 2006


Damn, I was this close to getting called out in MetaTalk. You ruin everything, dios.
posted by smackfu at 2:20 PM on June 9, 2006


For the record, there was no "interesting conversation" going on at the time. It was basically people saying "Yeah!" to each other. dios just pointed out the obvious.
posted by Pacheco at 2:21 PM on June 9, 2006


1. Take any post that shows (or purports to show) conservatives doing something stupid, or the MSM behaving in a non-liberal way.

2. Guess how dios will try and derail the post from the topic.


That'd make for a good exercise in general, actually; make it dios-agnostic and simply examine a post for details that would lead to potential nit- (or elephant-) picking objections by contentious readers. Rework post, repeat. If the process ever finishes, post secure in the knowledge that you've vetted your front page content. If the process never finishes, it might just be a big old turd best abandoned.
posted by cortex at 2:22 PM on June 9, 2006


monju totally needs to post some of the emails dios sends him, without asking dios first of course, since monju decided it's cool.
IM logs, too. but I guess those they're too-hot-for-MeTa, all that superhero-on-superhero action!
posted by matteo at 2:23 PM on June 9, 2006


cortex.

that was awesome. have my babies.
posted by Stynxno at 2:24 PM on June 9, 2006


I hardly think dios derailed the post. It's barely a blip, but now you've gone and created a Federal case out of it. Sheesh.
posted by caddis at 2:25 PM on June 9, 2006


matteo, two questions:

Was that the email as you wrote it?
Was there any content in that mail that you consider private?

I do think that revealing emails is a ethical tarbaby in the general case, but context matters—the quoted email was unflattering to you, but contained no sensitive info.

Scolding monju for walking into an ethical landmine is fair, but implying that privacy in any but the most pedantic and self-serving sense was violated seems silly in this case.
posted by cortex at 2:28 PM on June 9, 2006


cortex, your defense of dios is somewhat valid, but only if you ignore his lengthy history of derailing in this fashion over and over and over again.

i think one of the things that irks people the most about dios is that he's appointed himself mefi cop for any thread with which he personally disagrees and is very vocal about it. other users say "hey, there are plenty of threads i don't like but you don't see me harping about EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM."

i'm not aware that smackfu has any such history. we apply different standards to behavior of different users depending on the context of their posting history. that's all this is.
posted by Hat Maui at 2:29 PM on June 9, 2006


There was nothing to derail in that post.
posted by empath at 2:30 PM on June 9, 2006


Exactly. This is the nature of a troll. They have a talent for making people play their game.

So the reason Dios is a troll and smackfu is not is that Dios used his Evil Troll Powers to force you to post a MeTa thread about him against your will?

Hmm.
posted by IshmaelGraves at 2:32 PM on June 9, 2006



monju totally needs to post some of the emails dios sends him, without asking dios first of course, since monju decided it's cool.
IM logs, too. but I guess those they're too-hot-for-MeTa, all that superhero-on-superhero action!


cry,baby,cry
posted by Snyder at 2:32 PM on June 9, 2006


"If the process never finishes, it might just be a big old turd"

Oh yes. Great idea. If a post might get derailed because it's something Dios doesn't want talked about, it's a big turd. So we aid those with a clear agenda by deliberately avoiding posts that set them off.
posted by y6y6y6 at 2:33 PM on June 9, 2006


i'm not aware that smackfu has any such history. we apply different standards to behavior of different users depending on the context of their posting history. that's all this is.

I agree with you there, but there is the inescapable fact that dios' posting history (and, more generally, the general second-hand perception of his history) is constantly colored by the over-reactions based on that very perception. It's a feedback loop, and it's irresponsible. A willingness to react not to the behavior but the perception of the user leads to exactly the fucked-up dichotomy evidenced above.
posted by cortex at 2:33 PM on June 9, 2006


Dios' comment really wouldn't have been an issue if so many people hadn't jumped all over it. The reaction to Dios is way way worse than Dios. If the man really has a sinister plot to derail threads like that (and I'm not sure that he does) he's freaking brilliant because now his mere presence sends a bunch of people spiralling off into a frenzy of wasted energy. I've been sucked in by him before when he's said stuff that pissed me off. But I've realized that a lot could be accomplished if people would just ignore him when he's off-topic and irritating, and I try to do that.

y6y6y6 - I'm under the impression that you have a history w/r/t Dios, and I think your trigger finger may be a bit happy in this case. What was a lame aside in an otherwise alright thread is now opened up into a "let's dredge up rivalries"-fest. What positive did you hope to accomplish?
posted by raedyn at 2:34 PM on June 9, 2006


"That'd make for a good exercise in general"

Oh, I do this already. I've got my own personal metafilter. I post threads, and then reply with what people would probably say. quonsar2 posts elephants, dios2 derails, jonmc2 fights pop culture, matteo2 bitches about monju2 and dios2, stavrosthewonderchicken2 bitches about youtube and google video posts, etc etc.

Astro Zombie 2 tried to create a bunch of sock puppets, but I put a stop to that.

Maybe if you fuckers wouldn't keep reacting so predictably to specific posts, it wouldn't be so damn easy to push your buttons.
posted by graventy at 2:34 PM on June 9, 2006


(I meant that as a rhetorical question, but feel free to reply if you think it will advance some higher cause. My motivation here is to encourage people to not feed more energy into making Dios the centre of the MeFi universe. By saying any of this, I may be working directly against my own intentions, but there it is.)
posted by raedyn at 2:34 PM on June 9, 2006


Oh yes. Great idea.

Actually, I generalized dios out of it and suggested that people critically consider their own posts. And, yes, those big old turds that characteristically drop on the front page (among a number of finely constructed posts, and non-contentious posts) might dry up. I would not cry a single tear.
posted by cortex at 2:35 PM on June 9, 2006


By saying any of this, I may be working directly against my own intentions, but there it is.

I feel your pain, baby.
posted by cortex at 2:36 PM on June 9, 2006


revealing emails is a ethical tarbaby

i think it's more of an ethical spearchucker.
posted by Hat Maui at 2:38 PM on June 9, 2006


No, wait, it's an ethical wetback. "Wetbathicals", we call 'em, 'round h'yah.
posted by cortex at 2:39 PM on June 9, 2006


"What positive did you hope to accomplish?"

Sometimes beating the dead horse eventually leads to action being taken. The last time I made a callout like this Dios got a time out. Right? He's done the same thing again, more than once, and I think that deserves some attention.
posted by y6y6y6 at 2:39 PM on June 9, 2006


so you're a tattle tale
posted by Pacheco at 2:45 PM on June 9, 2006


...And at the same time somewhere in the pacific northwest a lanky man with glasses and a recumbent bike clutches his forehead.
posted by Divine_Wino at 2:46 PM on June 9, 2006 [1 favorite]


Smackfu didn't *actually* derail the thread. Dios did.

Both posted equivalent comments. So you're saying that because people chose to respond to dios but ignore smackfu, dios is responsible for derailing? Are you, perhaps, skipping a crucial factor ("people chose") in that equation?

monju totally needs to post some of the emails...

Considering the substance of the e-mail, and the fact that its context was a public exchange that monju had deliberately tried to keep public, I don't see anything wrong with posting it in the thread. If you don't like how it represents you (and you shouldn't), perhaps you shouldn't have mailed it.
posted by cribcage at 2:49 PM on June 9, 2006


oh look, some moron with a grudge. NEXT
posted by cellphone at 2:50 PM on June 9, 2006



posted by antifreez_ at 2:52 PM on June 9, 2006


The last time I made a callout like this Dios got a time out. Right? He's done the same thing again, more than once, and I think that deserves some attention.
posted by y6y6y6 at 5:39 PM EST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


Except this time he didn't do anything except point out the obvious. This kind of post typically garners calls of "get your own blog." It's not a link to a site that is interesting, but rather trying to make a political point all on its own. Dios was right to call it out. I think the point is interesting enough to let it stay, but it is questionable. You seem to be reacting more out of general distaste for dios than for this particular post. He could post "impeach GW" and you would get sore.
posted by caddis at 2:53 PM on June 9, 2006


So you're saying that because people chose to respond to dios but ignore smackfu

Worse even than that. People responded to both, in kind, on the subject of their objections, plus dios got a couple of "stfu dios" one-liners and "hell yeah".
posted by cortex at 2:53 PM on June 9, 2006


Dios is becoming one of the more interesting posters around here, even if I do disagree with most of what he says. I think I'll add him to my contacts.
posted by caddis at 2:54 PM on June 9, 2006


Christ, it's too goddamn hot for this shit, people.
posted by boo_radley at 2:56 PM on June 9, 2006


Dios personally delivered my child and saved my dog from a burning house. Dios for president.
posted by cellphone at 3:01 PM on June 9, 2006


In all sincerity, I did some light thinking about mefi and its culture a while back when, on a rare occasion, I really, truly agreed with le dieu regarding the philosophy of "If you don't like it, skip it," ("IYDLISIsm" is how me and my homies refer to it). I really think it could serve as the golden rule for mefi, even for people who are having a bad day and break the rule itself--because next time, you could try a bit harder and just sublimate the desire to type something meant only to drop a turd into a discussion others are having. And before any of you scramble through my posting history to find evidence of me being a hypocrite, I'll admit, outright, that I haven't always lived up to the ideal. But it's still a good one.

But I've been backsliding lately. I crapped in a recent FPP about the Allblacks, which was bitchy of me and I kind of regret it (although the post was poorly presented by objective standards). This is just to say, it's kind of hard to walk the bald David Carradine/Kung Fu path of righteousness on Mefi, in spite of the fact that the site seems to be healthier than ever as a whole, in no small part thanks to the fact that many of the "n00bs" are a hell of lot more interesting than the litany of "mefi celebs," IMO. The fact is, while bad behavior isn't directly rewarded around here, it certainly isn't discouraged by either moderation or "self-policing," which frankly boils down to internet nerd Bloods v. Crips affairs, left or right politics aside. It ain't ideology that's the problem, it's simple ego.

With apologies to Chief Joseph of the Nez Perce, I hearby formally renounce IYDLISIsm from this day forward as a personal motivating ideal, with the corrollary that you can drag me into Meta, send me creepy and/or puerile emails, or leave lots of stupid comments on my blog (although I do appreciate the traffic, as it feeds said ego, and said hypocrisy). If I think your FPP is stupid or poorly implemented, I'll tell you in the blue (although I'll try and limit myself to a single comment). If I get comments deleted, so be it--if anything, it's a plus because I'll basically be getting a free pass on my own immaturity. If I get tempo-banned, that would suck, but it's pretty easy to avoid. Some posters have shown me the way, and I'm pretty clear on what lines and/or mores not to cross or piss upon. If I'm perma-banned, I'll get a sock puppet. I'm about to move across the country anyway, so maybe it'll be refreshing to register the handle "god" in every language I can think of.

So fuck it. This is a neat place, and easily one of the smarter ones on the intarweb. But to invest anything into it beyond your interest or you snark is for suckers.
posted by bardic at 3:15 PM on June 9, 2006


*the ideal is a good one, not necessarily my posting history.
posted by bardic at 3:19 PM on June 9, 2006


("IYDLISIsm" is how me and my homies refer to it)

Mind you, IYDLISIsm is a real wetbathical.
posted by cortex at 3:19 PM on June 9, 2006


bardic, is this your jerry maguire moment?

well, then, show me the money, baby!
posted by Hat Maui at 3:22 PM on June 9, 2006


bardic: your comment is too long and nobody will read it because it is at the end of the thread.
posted by cellphone at 3:22 PM on June 9, 2006


cortex, can't we just agree to call it an ethical jive-talking blacktop-covered negro infant?
posted by Hat Maui at 3:24 PM on June 9, 2006


I read it, but only because I skipped down here looking for .gifs.
posted by brain_drain at 3:25 PM on June 9, 2006


bardic: agreed on the statement of ideal. Good on you. I also hear you on the backsliding, but (at the risk of responding to dripping sarcasm with a straight line) if you like the place, it's worth the effort to just chill out and maintain some self-control. I have my snarkier moments, but I continue to try to control 'em because I like it a lot better around here when the arguments don't get nasty/personal/etc.

(I love a good argument, though. I just like it when they make sense.)
posted by cortex at 3:26 PM on June 9, 2006


Hat Maui, that's just downright offensive!
posted by cortex at 3:27 PM on June 9, 2006


what are you, some kind of racial bluenose?
posted by Hat Maui at 3:29 PM on June 9, 2006


I'm a highly sensitive person! And some of my best friends are negro infants.
posted by cortex at 3:32 PM on June 9, 2006


that explains a lot, actually.
posted by Hat Maui at 3:34 PM on June 9, 2006


'Me learn much from you guys. You not notice that post was good by modern standard of history of metafilter. In Bilbao learning is found at metatalk.' According to a chink mate of mine, comment on the teaching of English in Spain. Weird it would become so relevant his little...
posted by econous at 3:37 PM on June 9, 2006


did you just use the word "chink" in a completely nonsensical comment?

that's simply not acceptable. racial slurs have to make sense!
posted by Hat Maui at 3:39 PM on June 9, 2006


am i rite, cortex?
posted by Hat Maui at 3:39 PM on June 9, 2006


y6, apparently you're new here, so I'll explain. There's a flagging system by which you can call out posts or comments that trouble you. Your lone flag may not be enough to get a comment or post deleted, but it does act as a barometer to see if others feel as you do. For example, if many people flag an item, it will be noticed by one of the admins (mathowie & jesssmyn are the admins) and they can take appropriate action. This term "troll" that you toss around, I'm not sure it means what you think it means. Traditionally, it's a term you use to refer to someone in an online message board system who thrives on attention and is best left alone. Surely if that's what you think this "dios" person is, starting a MetaTalk thread about him isn't the smartest or most rational course of action, no? It's like arranging all your kindling around the fire to make sure it doesn't spread. Still, points for trying, champ. Better luck next time?
posted by jonson at 3:45 PM on June 9, 2006


he is rite
posted by cortex at 3:54 PM on June 9, 2006


Metafilter: It's like arranging all your kindling around the fire to make sure it doesn't spread.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 4:12 PM on June 9, 2006


Metafilter:
posted by mullingitover at 4:20 PM on June 9, 2006


Where's quonsar and his elephant?
posted by caddis at 4:35 PM on June 9, 2006


Four legs good! Two legs baaaad!
Four legs good! Two legs baaaad!
posted by hermitosis at 4:43 PM on June 9, 2006


y6y6y6 said: "This molehill is now a mountain."

I propose that MeTalk get the same one-week time-out as AskMe. Then, if you have an actual problem during the week, email the PTB.
posted by mischief at 4:50 PM on June 9, 2006


pointy turd boss?
posted by cellphone at 4:50 PM on June 9, 2006


MetaFilter: Then quonsar comes along and says something only he finds funny. Then EB comes along and takes seven paragraphs to state the obvious. Then languagehat comes along and congratulates EB on being an intellectual peer, so far above the chatty rabble. Then I say something about how my perception of many of you is that you need girl and/or boyfriends. Then monju_bosatsu comes along and says I don't defend dios, I just carry his water for him unto perpetuity. Someone will tell me I should eat a bag of cocks. And at the very, very end of this thread, which won't finish up completely until Monday afternoon, y2karl will come along and say something cryptic about a mefite who hasn't posted here since 2002. And all the while, dios will get his jollies reading all this shit through the weekend and thinking once again he's "won" mefi, because he's only capable of seeing this place in terms of warfare (how Lakoffian of me...).

And there'll be some jpgs and stuff.
posted by mischief at 4:59 PM on June 9, 2006


Once again Dios derails an interesting conversation, and makes it all about him,

Yeah, that was obnoxious.
posted by delmoi at 5:00 PM on June 9, 2006


Pointy-threaded boss.
posted by cortex at 5:01 PM on June 9, 2006


powers that beatbox?
posted by Hat Maui at 5:08 PM on June 9, 2006


Wow, I spent 20 minutes reading this whole thread. And now I'm depressed about wasting so much of my life.

It's just so annoying that Dios makes himself the center of attention so much. And boring. It would be nice of people could ignore him, but for everyone who ignores him, another poster will pop up and rise to the bait. It's so tedious.

It's also irritating that after all this he still constantly feels the need to harp about form on the blue, rather then flagging or making a MeTa post. He's basically unrepentant about this.

The reason Dios' post was "a troll" and smackfu's wasn't was the extra snarky way he said it. Smackfu basically just told us that he didn't care, which is fine, and admitted the central point, that the media was being inconsistent.

Dios just dropped a snark bomb in an insulting way.
posted by delmoi at 5:19 PM on June 9, 2006


wow you spent all that time reading, complain about it, then give your opinion just to make it all worth while. Selfish occasionally? I jest.
posted by econous at 5:31 PM on June 9, 2006


The reason Dios' post was "a troll" and smackfu's wasn't was the extra snarky way he said it.

I don't buy that. "Who gives a shit?" and "This is a post?" are definitely in the same weight class. If the voice you hear speaking dios' lines is more annoying to you, sure, but I don't see any real objective gulf between the two.
posted by cortex at 5:35 PM on June 9, 2006


"i think it's more of an ethical spearchucker."

Prompted by your comment, I Googled tar baby and ended up reading the brief Wikipedia entry on it. And that was the first time in my entire life that I've ever heard that tar baby has been used by some to refer to a black person. All the other many and innumerable uses of the expression I've heard in my life have been as "something hard to resist picking up that turns out to be hard to put down". So, you know, I'll go along with the idea that somewhere out there, and apparently including Hat Maui, are people who think that tar baby is a racist expression. I won't go along with the idea that it necessarily is a racist expression.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 5:53 PM on June 9, 2006


So, Condoleeza Ethereal Bligh throws a watermelon at dios?
posted by atrazine at 5:56 PM on June 9, 2006


revealing emails is a ethical tarbaby

What would Tony Snow do?
posted by ericb at 6:00 PM on June 9, 2006


Dios, if you're reading this, at this point it would be better for everyone if you would restrain yourself from metacritical comments in threads of posts on the blue. Yes, you're held to a higher standard. Yes, your critics are obsessive crazy people. But sometimes it's best to just avoid upsetting the crazy obsessive people because upsetting them is more trouble than the trouble's worth.

One very good reason to do this, besides a pragmatic capitulation to the demands of crazy people, is that, as pointed out above, it's against the rules to metacriticize in threads on the blue. People do it, but they shouldn't.

Meanwhile, I encourage any conservatives out there to post as many equally crappy right-wing posts as is this crappy left-wing post we're discussing. Then when the usual suspects metacriticize in the thread and start arguments about the post, call them out here in MeTa. Frankly, this would make me very happy.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:01 PM on June 9, 2006


It's just so annoying that Dios makes himself the center of attention so much.

What? You've gotta be kidding me. delmoi, people who snark far more and far worse get hi-fives around here. It's more like anytime someone sees a comment by Dios, they feel the need to jump on him because it makes them feel good to think they told that Big, Bad Right-Winger what's what.

The last time I made a callout like this Dios got a time out. Right? He's done the same thing again, more than once, and I think that deserves some attention.

WTF? Are you 12, y6y6y6?
posted by mkultra at 6:02 PM on June 9, 2006


y6y6y6, there have been a lot of shitty, pointless callouts in MeTa lately, but this is by far the shittiest and most pointless. Congratulations: you won in a tough contest.

*congratulates EB on being an intellectual peer*
posted by languagehat at 6:14 PM on June 9, 2006


So, you know, I'll go along with the idea that somewhere out there, and apparently including Hat Maui, are people who think that tar baby is a racist expression. I won't go along with the idea that it necessarily is a racist expression.

so you think the term 'tar baby' just arose sui generis?

look, you shouldn't get all agnostic about the historical context of something like 'tar baby' just because you don't like the person posting about it.

furthermore, my alluding to its racist history does not also mean that i felt cortex used it in racist fashion (or even out of lack of racial sensitivity). i contend nothing of the sort. i remarked on it mostly because of the recent tony snow run-in ericb kindly linked above, but also because i like the creative zest of certain racist terms, i really do. they're so dynamic sometimes!

in summation, don't presume thoughts of mine just because you've never seen song of the south. zippidee doo dah, to you, sir!
posted by Hat Maui at 6:16 PM on June 9, 2006


You know, I did crack for a while. It was fairly hard to give up. The only thing that makes me want to do it again is threads like this about dios (and sometimes the Afternoon Play on Radio 4). I'm really not joking, you're all making me feel completely fucking abject.
posted by jack_mo at 6:17 PM on June 9, 2006


Ha ha, I thought I was logged in a me sock puppet there. Hey ho, last night a DJ EB saved my life.
posted by jack_mo at 6:19 PM on June 9, 2006


what? are you confessing to sockpuppetry? who did you think you were logged in as? sgt. serenity?
posted by Hat Maui at 6:21 PM on June 9, 2006


EB, while I appreciate your edifying response to the tarbaby issue, it should be noted that I am in fact an unrepentant racist. It is merely fortuitous that my slur happened—unknown to me, I assure you!—to share linguistic space with such a metaphorical usage.

Hey, there're three Ns in "unknown". Neat.
posted by cortex at 6:25 PM on June 9, 2006


Meanwhile, I encourage any conservatives out there to post as many equally crappy right-wing posts as is this crappy left-wing post we're discussing.

Mr. "All About The Links" has spoken.
posted by trondant at 6:28 PM on June 9, 2006


"so you think the term 'tar baby' just arose sui generis?"

Well, I did. I was wrong. I'm sure I heard the Uncle Remus version of it at some point in my life; but the thing is, this is one of those sayings (like "begging the question") that has a false etymology that is entirely reasonable. When I've heard the term, my mind has always generated the image of a baby atop some tar at the edge of a tar pit, someone picking the baby up, and finding that they cannot put the baby down, forced to take on this responsibility permanently. That makes complete sense. So your implication that my ignorance was in some degree absurd is itself flawed: seems to me that my idea of what it meant is, all things equal, much more justifiable than bringing race into the matter.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:29 PM on June 9, 2006


"Mr. 'All About The Links' has spoken."

Well, yeah. Because I think that right-wing posts like this left-wing post might get some people to start thinking about the quality of the links, not just the message they want to express.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:34 PM on June 9, 2006


I'm not sure inoculation works on websites the way it does on people. Having said that, you can make a FPP with a single link to the Washington Times any time you want, if you want to get the ball rolling yourself.
posted by trondant at 6:41 PM on June 9, 2006


y6y6y6: The last time I made a callout like this Dios got a time out. Right? He's done the same thing again, more than once, and I think that deserves some attention.

WTF? Are you 12, y6y6y6?
posted by mkultra at 9:02 PM EST on June 9 [+fave] [!]


That is an appropriate question. Although, most 12 year olds show better judgement. Dios may poke with a sharp stick at times, but he always acts like an adult, while . . . ?
posted by caddis at 6:42 PM on June 9, 2006


Can I add to this shitfest my contempt for the blink tag?

A couple of trolls, a pile-on, two derailing callouts later and all that sticks in my craw is the fucking blink tag.

Delmoi, I used to think you were cool.
posted by peeedro at 6:43 PM on June 9, 2006


When I've heard the term, my mind has always generated the image of a baby atop some tar at the edge of a tar pit, someone picking the baby up, and finding that they cannot put the baby down, forced to take on this responsibility permanently.

uh, yeah... that must have come from the vast well of 'babies hanging about ye olde tarpit' stories that form a very important square in the great European literary patchwork quilt.

but what sold me was the kicker:

That makes complete sense.

if you say so it must be true.
posted by Hat Maui at 6:47 PM on June 9, 2006


"uh, yeah... that must have come from the vast well of 'babies hanging about ye olde tarpit' stories that form a very important square in the great European literary patchwork quilt."

You make your point amusingly. But, as it happens, there is a worldwide literary patchwork of "finding babies in the wilderness" stories.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:51 PM on June 9, 2006


the vast well of... the... patchwork quilt

ouch! that metaphor is painfully mixed!
posted by Hat Maui at 6:51 PM on June 9, 2006


You make your point amusingly

i shall give you a free lesson in brevity (thank me later): LOL.
posted by Hat Maui at 6:53 PM on June 9, 2006


Jesus Christ, guys, don't you know there's a war World Cup going on!?
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 7:02 PM on June 9, 2006


Thank you for this Dios post. Please make another next week.
posted by LarryC at 7:07 PM on June 9, 2006


what? are you confessing to sockpuppetry? who did you think you were logged in as? sgt. serenity?
em>

Oh great , now i'm jacks sockpuppet - there are worse things i suppose - no money for the cca jack - i had to go and snap the union canal this evening instead : (

or maybe i really am Jacks sockpuppet.....arent you supposed to be in liverpool now ?

posted by sgt.serenity at 7:21 PM on June 9, 2006


i remarked on it mostly because of the recent tony snow run-in ericb kindly linked above

I couldn't help but think of that, either.
posted by cortex at 7:23 PM on June 9, 2006


Another fucking dios thread. Just like fucking clockwork it is ennit. Fucking Christ people. Go to the fucking pub every once in a while and spare yourselves the frigging drama. Sweet sufferin bleedin swivelin jumpin merciful Jesus on toast points almighty.

dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios dios
MUSHROOM MUSHROOM

/been to the pub.
posted by hangashore at 7:33 PM on June 9, 2006


MeTa Rap

It was June the 9th and all the mefites in town,
were getting together and beginning to frown,
dios had posted again in the blue,
accusing a member of taking a poo,
on the front page of Matthew's den,
the countdown begun, starting at ten.

First there was MeTa bitchin' about,
how dios seems to have way too much clout,
with the admins, both Matt and Jess,
and how he thought certain posts were not the best,
of the web and not worthwhile,
so he adds them to the ignore pile.

All of the MeFites ran to the grey,
some to bitch and some to play,
y6 was first to make the point,
myself I rolled a big fat joint,
this was the weekly dios show,
something we've seen and we all know.

Take your positions in the civil war,
or maybe don't post and fucking bore,
my ass so much I write this crap,
and now I'll end this pointless rap.

MeTa is the place to bring your bitchings,
but it's not very much fun and I fancy a Hitchens.
posted by longbaugh at 7:51 PM on June 9, 2006 [2 favorites]


so it needs to be derailed and we need to spend time handling his troll rather than continuing the interesting conversation.

You don’t need to spend the time. That’s the point those of us who are so often lumped into the “Dios Defense Force” keep trying to make, but some of you keep missing (you know, by the same group of you who always seem to pop up in all the dios threads? [and not you so much, y6y6y6, but most of the usual suspects are all here, you’ll notice.])

monju totally needs to post some of the emails dios sends him, without asking dios first of course, since monju decided it's cool.
IM logs, too. but I guess those they're too-hot-for-MeTa, all that superhero-on-superhero action!


Are you fucking twelve years old or something?

(I wrote that before I saw mkultra's comment, BTW. But seriously, matteo, What gives? I can't find the energy to hold a grudge IRL, but you seem to be able breed them like bunnies around here lately. You never used to come off as that kind of person. Opinionated and acerbic? Sure. Petty and utterly predictable? Kind of a recent thing.)

My motivation here is to encourage people to not feed more energy into making Dios the centre of the MeFi universe.


Thank. You. (And your Dios Defense Force button is in the mail. I know you probably didn’t want one, but you’ll get one from somebody anyway.)

And dios doesn't derail threads. People who respond to dios derail threads. Many have said it before, but it bears repeating.

But, dios, seriously... I understand where you're coming from. You still need to kick it down a notch. I get extremely annoyed when I see people defend Bushsucksfilter posts with comments like, "maybe you'd like to see more flash games while the fiddle plays and the city burns..." I've never seen a Bush Sucks thread here that had any information in it that I haven't seen in the blogs that I read every day (and I'm a die-hard Leftie, so those are the ones I read.) Using Metafilter for political validation is just plain lazy, IMHO. There's members here (all on my side of the aisle, oddly enough,) who frequently drive me up the wall. I used to comment on their every utterance that I saw, but you have to eventually realize it ain't worth it. Because there's a daily kitten just a few scrolls down the page.

Stop trying to be the cop. There's still plenty of good shit posted here that doesn't have any political bent whatsoever (OMFG!!! That Spanish castle turned to black! That's symbolic of the USA's relationship with Europe or something...)
posted by Cyrano at 8:39 PM on June 9, 2006


"stop trying to be the cop" is the point of this callout and all callouts of dios--it's sad you and others don't get that, and continue to defend his actions.
posted by amberglow at 9:06 PM on June 9, 2006


Where's John Stossel when I need him?

Oh, wait, there he is:



Shit post, shitter call-out.



Cortex, Snyder: Added to the favorites list I keep in my heart.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 9:09 PM on June 9, 2006


At 11:39 PM, Cyrano remarks that the same group of posters show up in every dios thread: "Most of the usual suspects are all here, you’ll notice."

27 minutes later, amberglow joins the thread.
posted by cribcage at 9:24 PM on June 9, 2006


I hate you all.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:32 PM on June 9, 2006


just because I can
posted by mischief at 9:33 PM on June 9, 2006


Smackfu makes essentially the same comment, no one engages him and the comment dies. dios does, he's engaged and responds completely appropriately, because he was engaged, and he gets called into MeTa.

I was watching that thread early on (and flagging the fuck out of it) and I really didn't see it that way at all.

Seriously, who gives a shit?
posted by smackfu at 1:29 PM


Ok, a little harsh, but on topic. elwoodwiles responds 3 minutes later that he does give a shit. Nine minutes later . . .

This would be a good blog post.
posted by smackfu at 1:41 PM


Yeah, that signal was worth chiming in again. Wait, no it wasn't. Flagged. PeterMcDermott snarks back twenty minutes later. Then dios . . .

Is this an actual post?
posted by dios at 2:26 PM


My immediate reaction was fuck you, smackfu already made that point. Twice. You're not adding shit, just stirring it. Flagged.

There are no more comments for thirteen minutes, as if we are all holding our breath. Then Meatbomb asks an obvious and non-aggressive rhetorical question in response.

And then, remarkably, the conversation resumes for eight comments and eleven minutes without a response to the dios turd and just one response to the smackfu turd. From 2:26 to 2:50 dios' stinker sat there ignored, and my faith in MetaFilter was feeling pretty high, lemme tell you. The conversation was pretty much back on track. But, of course, dios can't have it end there.

As opposed to just a random observation?
posted by dios at 2:50 PM


Okay, umm, yeah, that added nothing. Got your name back into the thread though, huh?

Then we go another ten minutes before cribcage replies to dios' last comment. It didn't quite make sense to me, but it seemed to be about the topic rather than the post and generated some more discussion.

Unfortunately that discussion included dios third comment that it was a shitty post at 3:06. This apparantly the number of licks it takes to get to the center of the attention tootsie pop. The track snapped and it was all derail from there. The topic switched to the merits of the post in four of the next six comments. I stopped reading at that point for the langauge issue was dead, a come from behind victory for the shouters.

In my opinion, the occasion where it is appropriate to discuss the quality of a post in the blue is extremely rare. We have flagging and two able moderators. We have MeTa for the really shitty posts. I seriously don't get why so many of you think that it's cool for dios to constantly ignore the appropriate mechanisms for policing a post.
posted by If I Had An Anus at 9:41 PM on June 9, 2006


I hope HTuttle is reading this and taking notes.

Seriously, sometimes I feign indignation just so that the guy doesn't feel completely invisible.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 9:51 PM on June 9, 2006


if self-parody was a crime, this thread would be impounded by the fbi
posted by pyramid termite at 10:03 PM on June 9, 2006


Clarification: Just illustrating how an actual troll, whose prescence has added absolutely zip to the community, gets less flak than a member who contributes regularly and positively.

But I heard from my cousin's girlfriend who knows the guy who shares a barber with HTuttle that he was recently seen with a handsome PBS tote bag, so he must be one of the good guys, right?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:08 PM on June 9, 2006


This thread should really be tied to this one, for poignancy's sake.
posted by mullingitover at 10:09 PM on June 9, 2006


I'm the author of the original post which (much to my bewilderment) created such a shitstorm on both Filter and Talk.

I am a newcomer to both forums. Of course I am concerned about etiquette regarding posts, and so I read the guidelines:
"A good post to MetaFilter is something that meets the following criteria: most people haven't seen it before, there is something interesting about the content on the page, and it might warrant discussion from others."


If dios or anyone else can point out how my post failed to "meet any metric of what a post should be" then I'd be happy to accommodate your sensibilities in future posts.
posted by Neiltupper at 10:16 PM on June 9, 2006


it's sad you and others don't get that, and continue to defend his actions.

Duuude, did you seriously fail reading comprehension in school or something? And Lord, please forgive me for the rudeness I'm about to employ (and the snark that I just used, even though I'm going to let it stand because that's what I felt when I read your comment,) but...

YOU JUST SLAGGED ME FOR MAKING A COMMENT THAT WE BOTH AGREE WITH! ARE YOU COMPLETELY DEVOID OF SELF-AWARENESS? I FUCKING AGREE WITH YOU. I PLAINLY SAID AS MUCH. I ASKED DIOS TO GIVE IT A A REST. CHRIST. AND YET YOU STILL HAVE TO TAKE A "YOU AND OTHERS" SHOT AT ME? WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU?!? WHERE DO YOU GET THE GALL TO CLAIM THAT DIOS IS THE ONLY ONE AT FAULT HERE?!?

You and yours have made dios into what he is. Despise him all you like, but he couldn't have done it without you.

Insofar as you can like anyone you only know online, I like you amberglow. And I disagree vehemently on politics with some of my best friends and, hell, some of my own blood. But I don't make 100% adherence to my world-view a prerequisite for my affections either. It seems you do.

And that's what's really sad.
posted by Cyrano at 10:22 PM on June 9, 2006


Don't hold your breath on that one, sheesh
posted by Cycloptichorn at 10:26 PM on June 9, 2006


Er, Neiltupper, that is.

Damn you alcohol!
posted by Cycloptichorn at 10:31 PM on June 9, 2006


Cyrano, what amberglow was responding to is your assertion that those that respond to dios are responsible for the derail. people get annoyed at self-appointed internet cops, and you were saying "well, it's not really the (self-appointed internet cop's) fault, it's all those people with the unmitigated gall to object to internet coppery."

it's clear in looking at your comment that you were saying "stop trying to be the cop" to dios but i can see where he might have made the mistake.
posted by Hat Maui at 10:31 PM on June 9, 2006


Neiltupper writes "If dios or anyone else can point out how my post failed to 'meet any metric of what a post should be' then I'd be happy to accommodate your sensibilities in future posts."

Don't beat yourself up too much. Your post was fine, don't be shaken by the D. He's guilty of dropping posts which look like they were intended to be sent to his del.icio.us links. Compared to these your post was a Ph. D thesis.

Generally, if you're getting people taking the time to criticize your post rather than simply flagging it, you're doing something right. You'll notice it hasn't been deleted, right? Much to his chagrin, Dios is not a moderator.


posted by mullingitover at 10:35 PM on June 9, 2006


Neiltupper, basically none of the links were interesting in and of themselves and are simply evidence for the political point you're trying to make. Like I said, an interesting post can be made about the subject. Perhaps you could have searched around for essays about language/the news media in times of conflict, etc. More actual content, I guess.

BTW, don't let the shitstorm discourage you. This stuff has nothing to do with you. Welcome to MeFi!

P.S. I am so let down that "shitstorm" is not in the spell check dictionary.
posted by brundlefly at 10:35 PM on June 9, 2006


And, of course, that's simply my own opinion... one that is clearly not universal. Too bad there's no "needs to be fleshed out" flag
posted by brundlefly at 10:37 PM on June 9, 2006


Oh, sure, Neiltupper, grounding this debate in reality is the last thing we need.
posted by mischief at 10:53 PM on June 9, 2006


An basically one link NewsFilter with supplementals to Wikipedia, and a Google Search result do not often a good FPP make.

'Course, my FPP was essentially a one link to a YouTube, so, y'know...
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:55 PM on June 9, 2006


mischief with a first: the blinking eponysterical!
posted by Hat Maui at 11:11 PM on June 9, 2006


man, how late am I to THIS bonfire?!

i would just like to chime in with this:

i don't know if dios' metacriticism of the thread was uncalled for. it was just thread snark, but whether or not that's ok is a gray area right now. EB says it's against the rules, but that rule isn't written anywhere, and if it's a spoken rule from some other meta thread, I'm not aware of it. nevertheless, tolerance of self-policing in the blue is way down. so maybe he shouldn't have done it.

but seriously, some light snark gets a fucking callout, and that utter piece of garbage post gets a pass?! it's nice to know how little value the quality of the front page has for us all, now. that post blows.
posted by shmegegge at 11:18 PM on June 9, 2006


Neiltupper, I enjoyed your post. After a little while you will determine for yourself where your anus is. It would be less funny if the other 'old hands' posted items of value themselves. OTOH being an overfed bitch is both easier and more fun.
posted by econous at 11:27 PM on June 9, 2006


Opinions are like assholes: everyone has one, and they all stink. Here's what mine smells like: It's a completely fine post. If you disagree, feel free to flag it, STFU, and move on to the next. I don't come to the board and check out the comments just so I can see the list of who doesn't like the post. If you think the post could be improved, welcome to the internet. We have a neat feature which allows you to add your comments, and in these comments you can flesh out the idea presented in the post. Conversely, if you feel you have a valid counterpoint to the poster's thesis, enlighten us by presenting information which demonstrates it to be false.

Or am I wrong? Can I drop into each and every post on the board and shit on the ones I don't like? Is that OK with everyone? If so, please let me know. I've got a cool gif of a dog humping another dog and then puking, and I can't wait to use it at each and every opportunity.
posted by mullingitover at 11:34 PM on June 9, 2006


This thread proves that mischief is aptly named.
posted by Cranberry at 11:51 PM on June 9, 2006


What a pathetic callout. y6y6y6 get laid, get a hobby, take some drugs, get a dog, get away from the computer.
posted by peacay at 12:00 AM on June 10, 2006


I love how you guys have unwittingly made Dios the star of this site. If there were some sort of blog convention, Dios would have to represent Metafilter, since he's obviously the most popular guy here.
posted by Afroblanco at 1:03 AM on June 10, 2006


I guess if someone who holds their farts until they're on a fully packed elevator is the 'star' of the elevator, then yes: Dios is the star of the site.
posted by mullingitover at 1:37 AM on June 10, 2006


It's a completely fine post. If you disagree, feel free to flag it, STFU, and move on to the next.

dios being an asshole aside, this is nonsense. we've had so many conversations in meta about how woefully ineffective flagging is as a form of self-policing, and how it actually goes against the entire notion of self-policing to have flags be our only form of protest against bad posts. "flag it and move on" is the "you're either for us or against us" of metafilter, and everyone who says it is just being a dick when they say it.

oh, and that post still sucked. dios was being an asshole, but that post was crap. it was a local newspaper link, a wikipedia link, and a google search, written like a livejournal entry. whoopee! if that's not garbage, then nothing is.
posted by shmegegge at 2:07 AM on June 10, 2006



shmegegge writes "oh, and that post still sucked. dios was being an asshole, but that post was crap. it was a local newspaper link, a wikipedia link, and a google search, written like a livejournal entry. whoopee! if that's not garbage, then nothing is."

Wow, you're right. Metafilter like, totally self-polices. I didn't realize that self-policing just consisted of being an asshole. My bad.

It's a good thing somebody pointed out that it was a bad post, because all those people who were replying totally didn't realize it. Can you believe they were actually trying to have a grownup conversation on the subject? Très retarded!
posted by mullingitover at 2:32 AM on June 10, 2006


uh, yeah... that must have come from the vast well of 'babies hanging about ye olde tarpit' stories that form a very important square in the great European literary patchwork quilt.

Wait, uh. You guys do know that the tar-baby as sticky problem comes from African folklore right? There's a number of African cultures where the 'trickster god' uses a tar-baby to trick an opponent.
Now, I'm not an American, so I don't know if this is a racial slur so common in the US that anyone unaware of it is a fool, but that's not where the story came from.
posted by atrazine at 2:48 AM on June 10, 2006


Neiltupper, basically none of the links were interesting in and of themselves and are simply evidence for the political point you're trying to make. Like I said, an interesting post can be made about the subject. Perhaps you could have searched around for essays about language/the news media in times of conflict, etc.

Exactly. MeFi is not the place to write your own essay, for that you need your own blog. If you had posted a link to something on the internet about the issue, and then added the stories as evidence there would be less complaint, except for the usual newsfilter, politicsfilter noise. Regardless, I think you brought up a great point and despite some of the bickering over posting form etc. there was good discussion.
posted by caddis at 4:16 AM on June 10, 2006


dios being an asshole aside, this is nonsense. we've had so many conversations in meta about how woefully ineffective flagging is as a form of self-policing, and how it actually goes against the entire notion of self-policing to have flags be our only form of protest against bad posts. "flag it and move on" is the "you're either for us or against us" of metafilter, and everyone who says it is just being a dick when they say it.

Flagging is woefully ineffective? I know that it's not as satisfying as publically expressing your distaste, but it does work. In the end, if there are enough flags, Matt and Jessamyn remove something. How is that woefully ineffective?

I also don't understand the last part of your statement; how is it "you're with us or against us" to tell people to use the existing methods of dealing with this rather than 140 comment shitstorms?
posted by dflemingdotorg at 5:07 AM on June 10, 2006


I'm on dios's side here, as I often seem to be. Why?

Well, I'm totally right wing. No, listen! I support George Bush and his neocon enablers without question. I am against peace (because peace is another word for weakness), and support war, in whatever form it may take, as long as America wins. And even if it doesn't, America is still number one in my eyes, beacuse that's what God tells the president. I want everyone who isn't white, christian, hetero and rich to be under suspicion, and if possible, incarcerated. They weaken our nation. I loathe wobbly milquetoast propaganda tools like diversity, tolerance, and justice. I support torture as long as its us doing the torturing, because we're doing it in the cause of freedom. International law is for pussies. The environment can suck my balls, unless exploiting it might make me and my nation a few bucks in the short term. Universal medical care, a minimum standard of living for all our citizens? Bullshit -- let them make their own way, the lazy cunts. America is all about rugged individualism! America is the best and the greatest nation in the world, in history both past and future, and when the rapture comes, and it will soon, we will have been the very pinnacle of human civilization.

I believe all of this passionately, and that is why I support dios, no matter what he says and does, against all you weak persnickety fucks like y6y6y6y, and always will. Because I don't care what's right, or who, all I care about is that you're on my team and you're part of my tribe.



No, really. I've been faking it all these years.


Seriously, though: y6y6y6 was just stirring the shit with this thread, and he's an asshole for doing it. But then, he's always been proud to be an asshole, and said so, so the deliberate troll is OK, I guess. The rest of you who got invested in the whole argument, yet again?

You got trolled, lame-os. And not by dios.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:52 AM on June 10, 2006


"It's a good thing somebody pointed out that it was a bad post, because all those people who were replying totally didn't realize it. Can you believe they were actually trying to have a grownup conversation on the subject? Très retarded!"

Discussion doesn't validate the quality of the post. This is so fucking obvious that I can't believe I have to say it. If I took a shit in the lobby of the movie theater, there'd be a lot of discussion, too. If someone posted "Bush" without a link, there'd be discussion, too. Bad posts receive as many comments, or more, than good posts do.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:26 AM on June 10, 2006


Richard Pryor and Chevy Chase on tar baby.
posted by Captaintripps at 6:40 AM on June 10, 2006


and you were saying "well, it's not really the (self-appointed internet cop's) fault, it's all those people with the unmitigated gall to object to internet coppery."

it's clear in looking at your comment that you were saying "stop trying to be the cop" to dios but i can see where he might have made the mistake.


OK, fair enough. Although I don't think anyone is on the side of the angels at this point.
posted by Cyrano at 6:58 AM on June 10, 2006


Although I don't think anyone is on the side of the angels at this point.

*stands tall, raises hand, gets deservedly pelted with rocks, garbage and rotten fruit*
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:07 AM on June 10, 2006


There should be more rapping on MetaTalk.
posted by stinkycheese at 7:59 AM on June 10, 2006


"Your post was fine, don't be shaken by the D. "

No, it was a good topic and a shitty post. Framing, rhetorical language, media bias and linguistic distinctions would all have supported your point (and I don't generally like posts that are attempting to make a "point"). Google news alone is not a good metric.
posted by klangklangston at 8:15 AM on June 10, 2006


Here's how I interpreted the post:

"Look at what I didn't find on the internet!"

This, IMHO, is completely opposed to the purpose of Mefi, which (ostensibly) is linking to something interesting you find on the internet, and therefore a weak post which is more suited to your own blog.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:42 AM on June 10, 2006


I just came in here to call someone a box of cocks.

Any takers?
posted by grapefruitmoon at 8:46 AM on June 10, 2006


I just came in here to call someone a box of cocks.

Don't flash the gang signs unless you know what they mean. It's all about the verb, not the noun phrase.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:51 AM on June 10, 2006


You know, there have been a whole lot of arguments about how killscripts would destroy MetaFilter, but I've been enjoying MeFi much more since installing them.
posted by Bugbread at 9:46 AM on June 10, 2006


..just cummed? What's a verb? Is it a doing word?
posted by econous at 10:11 AM on June 10, 2006


What's a verb? Is it a doing word?

Witness the glory of the new flesh.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:17 AM on June 10, 2006


If dios or anyone else can point out how my post failed to "meet any metric of what a post should be" then I'd be happy to accommodate your sensibilities in future posts.

Wow, a sincere request for feedback. Is this some kind of trap?

You post was awful, partly for the reasons stated, but more importantly, because it was a political post. All political posts suck, because 1) they are not the "best of the web," and sharing the best of the web used to be the stated purpose of MetaFilter, 2) there are plenty of other sites on the web that are for politics, and 3) political posts always generate more heat than light, if not outright shit storms, and that poisons the site in so many ways.

So if you find something cool on the web you want to share, we want to see it. But save the politics for your blog, or for a community site dedicated to politics.
posted by LarryC at 10:21 AM on June 10, 2006


"I just came in here to call someone a box of cocks.

Any takers?"


On first read, I thought that said sell someone a box of cocks, and I was praying fervently no takers would step forward, 'cause that's just wrong.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 10:26 AM on June 10, 2006


Yes, wrong. Very very wrong.

*Puts wallet away*
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 11:28 AM on June 10, 2006


Witness the glory of the new flesh.

OK, this whole pathetic, foredoomed thread was worth it for that.
posted by languagehat at 11:45 AM on June 10, 2006


Flagging is woefully ineffective? I know that it's not as satisfying as publically expressing your distaste, but it does work. In the end, if there are enough flags, Matt and Jessamyn remove something. How is that woefully ineffective?

because there's more to self-policing than simply clicking a "this is bad" button and hoping some invisible process does what you want. there is no "this is not bad enough to delete" flag, for instance, so if 15 people in one hour hate a post and flag it, there aren't 100 other "don't bother deleting this because it's not that bad" flags from the people who had no problem with it in that hour. it is, as an inescapable fact of it's construction, a poor method for delivering information on the collective opinion of a post. furthermore, it has been admitted by mathowie and jessamyn that they sometimes just delete a heavily flagged post without reading it because they're too busy policing the site to read everything. if flagging relies on the discretion of an administrator, and the administrator is relying on the discretion of the squeaky wheel members of the community, then the system sucks.

I also don't understand the last part of your statement; how is it "you're with us or against us" to tell people to use the existing methods of dealing with this rather than 140 comment shitstorms?

because conversation inthread has always been the exisiting method. "flag it and move on" is the new battle cry of assholes who don't want to hear dissenting opinions, not just in politics, but anywhere. it's a meaningless, destructive phrase thrown around by dickwads who just don't want anything they like publicly criticized.
posted by shmegegge at 12:54 PM on June 10, 2006


It's a good thing somebody pointed out that it was a bad post, because all those people who were replying totally didn't realize it.

this must be an example of that grown up discussion you were talking about.

do you realize that the portabello mushroom thread had hundreds of comments? and that most of the comments in the thread you love are about dios? you don't know what you're talking about.
posted by shmegegge at 12:55 PM on June 10, 2006


[img:ceiling dios.jpg]
posted by weretable and the undead chairs at 1:15 PM on June 10, 2006


shmegegge writes "it's a meaningless, destructive phrase thrown around by dickwads who just don't want anything they like publicly criticized."

I'm sorry if I didn't clarify this to your satisfaction: if you think the post is wrong, prove it. If you think it's lacking in substance, say so by adding the substance you feel it's missing. If you think it's a post which crosses the line of acceptable posting, flag it. If you just don't like the post, guess what? Nobody cares and you're making the internet dumber by soiling it with your opinion. You'll help the community more by going outside and rolling in the grass, or just masturbating to gay porn. However, thanks for playing, lovely parting gifts backstage, blah blah blah.

shmegegge writes "if flagging relies on the discretion of an administrator, and the administrator is relying on the discretion of the squeaky wheel members of the community, then the system sucks."
It's not called "Metafilter: Designed by God to be the Perfect Internet Forum". Unless by God you mean Matt, and by the perfect internet forum you mean not crashing most of the time. It's run by reasonable people with a limited amount of time on their hands.

Dropping in to submit "You call this a post?" is the equivalent of taking a dump in the aforementioned movie theatre lobby, and the ensuing conversation re: Dios was the logical equivalent of what the dump in the lobby would garner.
posted by mullingitover at 2:03 PM on June 10, 2006


You'll help the community more by going outside and rolling in the grass, or just masturbating to gay porn.

Why gay porn?
posted by cortex at 2:11 PM on June 10, 2006


you still don't know what you're talking about, and your "aol member on usenet" style of argumentation is obnoxious.

flagging is not the sole method of self-policing we do. discussing the merits of a post within the thread for that post is one of those methods as well. it has been since mefi's inception, and flagging didn't eliminate that fact.

and again, the system doesn't have to be perfect, but the poor construction of the flag system just goes to show that "flag it and move on" isn't a valid way to approach self-policing.

you should stop talking. you honestly just don't have any idea what you're talking about and your ability to follow an argument is piss poor.
posted by shmegegge at 2:31 PM on June 10, 2006


Shorter shmegegge: Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!
posted by bardic at 2:47 PM on June 10, 2006


dude you should see me. I've died my hair blue, shaved it into a receding hair line pattern and put on red glasses. then I do my best mr milhouse impression while I type.
posted by shmegegge at 2:55 PM on June 10, 2006


I second cortex: gay porn?

Anyway, flagging by itself isn't constructive, I don't think. If people just flag things and move on, without discussing why they found the post lacking, no one learns anything about what makes a good post.

Active, in-thread critiques lower the barrier for new members (such as Neiltupper). I know I lurked for a long time, reading posts and comments, before (hopefully) getting a handle on the MeFi aesthetic and drafting my own FPPs. It would have been a lot harder if all criticism had been in the form of flags invisible to anyone besides the admins.

Yes, sometimes the criticism is blunt in tone, but... you know. We're adults here.
posted by brundlefly at 3:00 PM on June 10, 2006


Shmeggege: I was under the impression that discussing the merits of a post within the thread has always been frowned on, as that type of discussion was supposed to go on MetaTalk.
posted by Bugbread at 3:04 PM on June 10, 2006


Masturbating to gay porn. Just one example of something more productive you could be doing instead of making pointless rips on a post without adding something useful to the discussion. You could also help the elderly, feed a starving child, brush your teeth, draw a picture, stand on your head, quote Shakespeare, learn how to repair a volkswagen, take your bike off some sweet jumps, invite a friend over for white russians and bowling, or take your two friends hitchhiking across the country to win the ultimate video game championship.

When I'm tempted to rip into a post without contributing to the conversation I like to shake it off with an hour of zen meditation while staring at hello.jpg.

About flagging, you're right, it's not the panacea of Metafilter. I mentioned this before, but perhaps this nifty formatting and boldness will make it easier to digest:

1. If you think the post is wrong, prove it.

2. If you think it's lacking in substance, say so by adding the substance you feel it's missing.

3. If you think it's a post which crosses the line of acceptable posting, flag it.


Submitting "This is a worthless post" is, ironically, only creating one more worthless entry on the site.
posted by mullingitover at 3:23 PM on June 10, 2006


Masturbating to gay porn. Just one example of something more productive you could be doing instead of making pointless rips on a post without adding something useful to the discussion.

But why gay porn? Is heterosexual porn more productive somehow?

2. If you think it's lacking in substance, say so by adding the substance you feel it's missing.

I understand the sentiment, but is this really realistic? If you think a post is lacking in substance, the only way to express that is to do additional research and flesh it out yourself? If you already have something to add, yeah, you should add it. But in general, people don't have time to flesh out/fix other members' posts. If that's the only kocher option, nothing will be said, and no one learns anything. Weak posts get a pass without the poster ever realizing that the post may be weak.
posted by brundlefly at 3:34 PM on June 10, 2006


Don't have time to flesh out the post? But you have time to be fucking around on Metafilter in the first place? Please.

I can understand if you don't have the expertise to flesh out the post, but if that's the case then how are you qualified to criticize it?
posted by mullingitover at 3:52 PM on June 10, 2006


There's a difference between dropping in to comment on MeFi (between doing other things, or even working on a post of one's own) and doing research to polish up someone else's post. If one can do that, great! The more input the better. But a "put up or shut up" attitude is of benefit to no one.

(No expertise is needed to point out a lack of content.)
posted by brundlefly at 4:33 PM on June 10, 2006


mullingitover writes "I can understand if you don't have the expertise to flesh out the post, but if that's the case then how are you qualified to criticize it?"

There's a big gap between knowing when something is bad and being able to do it better. If I buy a house, and the roof leaks all over the place at the first rainstorm, I know that the house sucks. I can't build a house. I wouldn't know what to do to rainproof it better. But that knowledge is not necessary to qualify me to criticize the house. The same goes for incredibly bad food, horrible airplane design, bumpy street paving, and a host of other things. One doesn't need to be able to do something better just to identify that it's bad.
posted by Bugbread at 4:34 PM on June 10, 2006


i think it's long past time we acknowledged wise, elder members of this site who are always there to tut-tut about how the site is changing, how it's not as good as it used to be, how the new members are ruining the elan vital that this site possessed in olden days.

you're serving a vital purpose -- reminding us to live up to your higher standard of discourse! we appreciate it -- it's like getting an oxford university lecture on metafiltrian dialectics across history FOR FREE!

one thing though -- you guys that are always bitching about the stupidity of a given metatalk thread or new members or lame posts -- how come you guys are always so active in those selfsame threads? slumming it? just gluttons for punishment? duty-bound to show us a better way? or secretly loving every fucking minute of it?

it's okay, there is fun to be had down off the high horse, you know.
posted by Hat Maui at 5:03 PM on June 10, 2006


"But a "put up or shut up" attitude is of benefit to no one."
No one expcept the people who don't think anything is wrong with the post and are discussing it without attacking the poster.

"There's a big gap between knowing when something is bad and being able to do it better. If I buy a house, and the roof leaks all over the place at the first rainstorm, I know that the house sucks. I can't build a house. I wouldn't know what to do to rainproof it better. But that knowledge is not necessary to qualify me to criticize the house. The same goes for incredibly bad food, horrible airplane design, bumpy street paving, and a host of other things. One doesn't need to be able to do something better just to identify that it's bad."

Part A: So not knowing how to repair a roof yourself means you're also helpless to open a phone book and point out a roofer?

Part B: Good/bad food is a matter of taste. Just ask anyone who loves/hates escargot. So that's a lame analogy. Horrible airplane design is engineering, not art, and crafting a post is not engineering. The same goes for street paving.

If you're trying to say that a Metafilter post is an engineering feat, please feel free to release the specs so Matt can publish them in the guidelines and we can once and for all be free of flawed posts. I'm of the impression that it's an art form with an extremely loose framework, published here. If you dont' think it fits in the framework, well that's what flagging is for. If Matt/Jessamyn, our benevolent dictators, agree with the sentiment then whoosh! Post gone. If they don't, sorry. Maybe this place just isn't a good fit for you.

People don't visit museums to hear how you like the art. They don't go to restaurants to hear how you like the food. They don't go to concerts to hear how you like the songs. Why do you believe they go do Metafilter to hear how you like the posts?
posted by mullingitover at 5:15 PM on June 10, 2006


*to
posted by mullingitover at 5:18 PM on June 10, 2006


"But a "put up or shut up" attitude is of benefit to no one."
No one expcept the people who don't think anything is wrong with the post and are discussing it without attacking the poster.


And who, pray tell, is attacking the poster?
posted by brundlefly at 5:20 PM on June 10, 2006


Hit post too soon:
I'm of the impression that it's an art form with an extremely loose framework, published here. If you dont' think it fits in the framework, well that's what flagging is for.

That's exactly right. It's a very loose framework, and often a post's problem(s) do not fit/deserve a flag for deletion, but instead criticism that points out those problems so that the original poster can take them into account in the future.
posted by brundlefly at 5:26 PM on June 10, 2006


mullingitover writes "So not knowing how to repair a roof yourself means you're also helpless to open a phone book and point out a roofer?"

If that's the analogy, then you're saying if someone makes a bad post, we should just say "Hey, ask Miguel Cardoso how to make a post. He's a good poster"?

Regarding part B, I'm not trying to say it's an engineering issue, nor a taste issue. I'm not trying to say anything about what it is. I'm just disagreeing with the argument that one needs to be able to do something well to critique it.

If you consider it an art form, then it's a matter of taste. Are you saying that being able to do something well makes your tastes more valid than someone else? Can a sufficiently skilled chef state definitively whether escargot is good or bad? I don't think so. Which is why I disagree that you have to be able to do something better in order to critique it.

mullingitover writes "Maybe this place just isn't a good fit for you. "

How so?

mullingitover writes "People don't visit museums to hear how you like the art. They don't go to restaurants to hear how you like the food. They don't go to concerts to hear how you like the songs. Why do you believe they go do Metafilter to hear how you like the posts?"

I don't believe that they do. However, this isn't a museum, a restaurant, or a concert. If anything, it's more like a potluck dinner. And nobody goes to a potluck dinner to hear how much somebody likes some dish, but if someone brings a bag of potato chips as their contribution, it's not unheard of for other people to give them an earful, either. Of course, returning from analogy to real world, I don't believe that belongs in the blue. That's one of the things that the grey is for. But I do believe that the community sets the tone for posts, and I don't think that community feedback about quality or direction of posts is evil. It should be done with tact, though, and not in the thread itself. So far, that's generally how it works, with a few exceptions, so the place is a good fit for me.
posted by Bugbread at 5:30 PM on June 10, 2006


"That's exactly right. It's a very loose framework, and often a post's problem(s) do not fit/deserve a flag for deletion, but instead criticism that points out those problems so that the original poster can take them into account in the future."

You're right. It's just too bad there's no way to use some other method of sending your thoughts directly to the poster, and instead have to derail the thread with your opinion on the quality of the message. If only profiles could store email addresses so helpful style critiques could go directly to the poster. That's probably too much to ask for though.
posted by mullingitover at 5:48 PM on June 10, 2006


mullingitover writes "You're right. It's just too bad there's no way to use some other method of sending your thoughts directly to the poster, and instead have to derail the thread with your opinion on the quality of the message. If only profiles could store email addresses so helpful style critiques could go directly to the poster. That's probably too much to ask for though."

False dichotomy. There's more than just commenting in the thread, and commenting in an email. There's MeTa.
posted by Bugbread at 5:57 PM on June 10, 2006


I didn't consider MeTa callouts an option for every thread you don't like, but if you want to go there then MeTa is certainly a better place for it than the blue.
posted by mullingitover at 6:16 PM on June 10, 2006


mullingitover, I think your tone's getting a bit sharp, and there's no need for that. You're right, emailing is one possibility. I'll just reiterate that reading public criticism -- and praise -- of posts was very instructive in my own understanding of this place's M.O. in a way that blows any FAQ out of the water.
posted by brundlefly at 6:20 PM on June 10, 2006


If I said, "This doesn't deserve to be a post," then no one would care. Why? Because I don't comment that frequently and people don't have any opinion about who I am. One person might say, "Yes, it does," but that would be about it. Many people are a bit obsessed with dios. So when he says it, many people get worked up. People would do better to focus on the comments and not on the commenters. Pretend I or some other member you have never heard of made the comment. Would it still make you that upset?
posted by flarbuse at 8:45 PM on June 10, 2006


mullingitover,

you're stretching it, and continuing to be obnoxious. criticism of a post, within reason, is okay within the blue. (dios criticism was likely not within reason, but his example does not represent all in thread criticism) it always has been, and it's how our best posters learned to make their best posts. not just through criticism of their own posts, but criticism of other's posts that they've read.

the idea that all criticism belongs in either email or meta is simply unfounded. you go find a place where that's written. anywhere. MeTa was created specifically so that threads saying "i have a problem with [post x]" didn't go on the blue. again, because people have a problem understanding this, that's posts about site critique. they don't belong on the blue, and so the gray was created to house them, and also to discuss site improvement, feature requests, etc... but a critique of a thread that doesn't merit a whole callout and isn't a personal attack is perfectly worthwhile on the blue, and CERTAINLY in the gray.

you're entire argument is absurd. it's not our job to fix posts. but it is part of the community's job to improve the overall quality of posts, here. part of that is commentary about what could be improved, or simply pointing out what's wrong. if you don't like it, take your own advice and move one elsewhere. we won't miss you.
posted by shmegegge at 12:33 AM on June 11, 2006


meh, grammar is sometimes my enemy.
posted by shmegegge at 12:34 AM on June 11, 2006


.
posted by bardic at 2:20 AM on June 11, 2006


"meh, grammar is sometimes my enemy."
Capitalization, too :P

I realize I'm being an obnoxious bastard. I was just thoroughly annoyed with the way the thread was derailed, and even more annoyed with the defense of the derailment. It wasn't in the league of jonson's recent masterpiece, but you have to admit the post had more thought than half of the one-link youtube posts we've seen this week. My annoyance is more directed at the poor form of Dios, who is busy hiding under a bridge waiting for the billy goats gruff. So whatever. There is room for constructive criticism in the blue, I'll state this for the record. Bottom line, I prefer to see the emphasis be more on the constructive than on the criticism.
posted by mullingitover at 3:47 AM on June 11, 2006


mullingitover : "I didn't consider MeTa callouts an option for every thread you don't like, but if you want to go there then MeTa is certainly a better place for it than the blue."

I don't think MeTa should be used that way either, but I figure there are 4 main options (and an infinite number of minor options): So, apparently, I disagree with quite a few people here, in that I think all commentary about a post itself (as opposed to commentary about the subject of a post) should be gray, possibly email, or silent. I guess I think of MeTa as being "MetaMeta".

In this issue, I think both smackfu and dios were wrong to criticise in-thread. However, smackfu's phrasing was worse than dios's. If we're going to get angry, I think smackfu deserves it more than dios, and the fact that dios's comment was more derailing than smackfu's shows a problem with MeFi more than a problem with dios's comment. So I think smackfu, dios, and the dios assault brigade are all at fault.
posted by Bugbread at 4:56 AM on June 11, 2006


So, apparently, I disagree with quite a few people here, in that I think all commentary about a post itself (as opposed to commentary about the subject of a post) should be gray, possibly email, or silent. I guess I think of MeTa as being "MetaMeta".

There would be too many MeTa posts under that scenario.
posted by caddis at 8:13 AM on June 11, 2006


Caddis: That's why I favor the "silent" option for anything but the really bad. Right now, big complaints come to the grey, and insignificant complaints stay on the blue. In the ideal world, the big complaints would come to the grey, and the insignificant complaints would stay in the minds of the annoyed, not transmitted anywhere electronically, because, hey, they're insignificant. But, again, I'm talking about what I think "should" happen, or what I consider "ideal", and not a realistic plan o' action. Reality has a habit of not being ideal.
posted by Bugbread at 8:21 AM on June 11, 2006


Boy, am I glad I actually have shit to do this weekend.
posted by jonmc at 8:59 AM on June 11, 2006


What bugbread said. Read all his comments in this thread twice for enlightenment.

"criticism of a post, within reason, is okay within the blue. (dios criticism was likely not within reason, but his example does not represent all in thread criticism) it always has been, and it's how our best posters learned to make their best posts. not just through criticism of their own posts, but criticism of other's posts that they've read."

This isn't really true. Matt very explicitly made MetaTalk because he didn't want the blue weighed down by metacommentary. Criticizing a post (or praising it!) is metacommentary.

However, as my parenthetical implies, a ban on all metacommentary in the blue is problematic. Should only praise be allowed? That may seem "unfair" or something, but it makes sense if the goal of this general policy is to avoid thread derails and interpersonal drama. Praise doesn't, usually, encourage those things.

All that said, I've continued to very occasionally criticize the quality of a post to the blue within the thread. But I've never believed or claimed that it was "correct" behavior. I've done it as a sort of a protest, or as guerilla tactics against what I've always felt are the continuing attacks on what makes MeFi special—attacks that come in the form of NewsFilter and AgendaFilter. If I've been reprimanded for such metacommentary, then I've taken my lumps, which I've deserved.

Part of the reason I think it's necessary, though, is because of the reason others have mentioned above: the alternatives are insufficient or unrealistic. (Unrealistic, and maddening, were there a new MeTa post for every worthy criticism of a MetaFilter post.) But the most compelling argument in my opinion is that hardly any of the regular participants and lurkers of the blue actually read the gray. There's numerous unambiguous examples in the gray where new users have stated that NewsFilter and AgendaFilter is what they thought MeFi is all about and why they joined. Though obviously insufficient, I don't think there's any force acting more strongly in opposition to NewsFilter and AgendaFilter than continuing protests, in-thread, in the blue. It's the only indication that lurkers have that it's not universally agreed upon that NewsFilter is what MetaFilter is all about. So in this sense, I sadly agree with you, shmegegge. But I don't think this is the optimal solution to the problem.

I'll also take some of the blame for encouraging dios in this behavior, if it's not too presumptious to assume that I have influenced him. This probably won't seem "fair" to dios, but like Seth before him the problem with his objections are that they are tained by his self-evident ideological bias. Yes, I've defended dios as being pretty reasonable, not a troll, and not as right-wing as, say, PP; but, nevertheless, dios clearly has politics that often clash with the dominant mefi perspective and, this being the case, it's probably both likely the case and certainly is going to be perceived to be the case that his criticisms are biased and driven by his politcal agenda.

Someone like me, on the other hand—someone who would whoop in ecstatic joy were Bush to fall down a flight of stairs and break his neck—can criticize yet another Bush Sucks! posts without it being suspected of partisanship. Same with the Christian Sucks! posts, as I'm as atheist as they come. (Although, it should be noted, there's been a few people here and there that have assumed that my criticisms are partisan and thus have wrongly assumed my politics.)

As I wrote elsewhere, at this point I think that dios's activities as a mefite protester have become counter-productive to everyone's interests, including his own. That's too bad—I'm not totally comfortable with that judgment. Imagine if one of we lefties were to decide to brave some right-wing site. Would it be "fair" to declare that we shouldn't be critical of the hypocrisy we see while it's okay for others? It would be a double-standard; and, when on the bad end of one, pretty much everyone complains of the unfairness of them. On the other hand, are double-standards always and necessarily unfair? I don't think so. Sometimes there are good reasons for them.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 9:09 AM on June 11, 2006


There is room for constructive criticism in the blue, I'll state this for the record. Bottom line, I prefer to see the emphasis be more on the constructive than on the criticism.

here, I couldn't agree more. i'll say for the record, though, that once a thread has come up as a topic on the gray, all bets are off, and anything's okay within that MeTa thread.

example:

post: "I just wanted to say that I don't appreciate [user x's] behavior in [thread y]."

now the way is open to say "while we're on the topic, THAT POST FUCKING SUCKED!" within that MeTa thread. I can't defend this feeling to the death or anything, but I tend to see meta as the place where you can bring those comments, provided you're not creating a new post just to air your personal annoyances or personal attacks. but that's just me.

either way, I agree that dios' and smackfu's comments were over the line, and that criticism should be more constructive than anything else on the blue. i was defending the right to criticise in general.
posted by shmegegge at 11:01 AM on June 11, 2006


These dios callout threads are the weeds of the MeTa garden: unpleasant to look at, they smell kind of bad, and no matter how often you get rid of them, they always keep popping up.
posted by antifreez_ at 11:22 AM on June 11, 2006


"can criticize yet another Bush Sucks! posts without it being suspected of partisanship."

Actually, that's not true. Matteo, Amberglow and others will assume partisanship first and attack even people that agree with them in principle but not on specific details that they've decided are part of the dogma.
I've been attacked over being insufficiently leftist more than once here.
posted by klangklangston at 11:50 AM on June 11, 2006


In this issue, I think both smackfu and dios were wrong to criticise in-thread. However, smackfu's phrasing was worse than dios's. If we're going to get angry, I think smackfu deserves it more than dios, and the fact that dios's comment was more derailing than smackfu's shows a problem with MeFi more than a problem with dios's comment.

That smackfu does not appear to have as much of a history of being abusive in Metafilter may perhaps explain why his behavior is overlooked. All else the same, this might explain various people's repeated reactions to this problem.
posted by Mr. Six at 2:33 PM on June 11, 2006


Hat Maui said 'what? are you confessing to sockpuppetry?'

Yeah, when I'm posting about stuff that I'd rather not be associated with this username, like former drug activities, I use a different account (mostly to allow answering stuff on AskMe), as Googling for my real name shows up things on MeFi with this username. Said sockpuppet profile makes it clear who I am on here. That's okay, isn't it?

The idea that I'm jenleigh sgt. serenity is fucking hysterical, though!
posted by jack_mo at 5:33 PM on June 11, 2006


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