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Misleading information on the front page?
October 12, 2006 8:08 AM   Subscribe

What are the pros and cons of adding some kind of notation to posts like this that may not be hoax-y enough to delete, but that still pass along misleading information on the front page? I'm not angry or calling for a deletion (the debunking discussion has been interesting), just asking for thoughts about the value of noting incorrect info for folks who just scan the front page.
posted by mediareport to Etiquette/Policy at 8:08 AM (33 comments total)

To be clear: are you advocating for a rule/practice/courtesy whereby the poster indicates whether her FPP is true or false, reliable or unreliable? So that we can make sure we're getting accurate news from the blue?

If so, I say nay, and caveat lector. While I'm not qualified to pronounce on what Metafilter is, FPP text sure as hell ain't a sanitary factchecked font of verifieds. Nor should it be. And if somebody wants to make or pass on a bad joke, hoax or bit of misinfo, blessed be.
posted by kosem at 8:35 AM on October 12, 2006


No, sorry for being unclear. I'm asking what folks think about the moderators noting the Apple folks' rebuttal in the front page post itself, rather than just inside the thread from later comments, to avoid spreading the incorrect rumor via folks who just scan the front page.
posted by mediareport at 8:47 AM on October 12, 2006


Honestly -- who's going to listen to someone who considers the blue a credible news source? I mean, I've learned all sorts of stuff from Metafilter, but I get my news from npr.
posted by echo0720 at 8:54 AM on October 12, 2006


No, the mods shouldn't be editing posts for accuracy. That's a huge can of worms with far greater costs than benefits. An exception might be made for posts that are potentially defamatory, but that's it.

The Apple/Islam post could have been deleted on the ground that it is crap.
posted by brain_drain at 8:55 AM on October 12, 2006


Got it.

Still don't like it. If the FPP can't stand, M&J can delete it. I don't see a moderator duty to cure non-tehnical FPP deficiencies. But that's just one man's opinion.
posted by kosem at 8:56 AM on October 12, 2006


It doesn't happen a lot, so we've very rarely had to edit a post saying something about the truthiness of it. I know at Digg, they have a special flag for something like "potentially misleading" (I forget the exact term) but over there it has become institutionalized to the point where any political post often carries it because the partisans on the other side claim everything as a falsehood.

Most misleading mefi posts get deleted when they're really that bad, but in this case, I think anyone reading about the thread will figure out it's kind of a hoax.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 9:00 AM on October 12, 2006


This comment may not be true.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 9:56 AM on October 12, 2006


Why not just, once it's been identified as a hoax, add the word hoax as a tag?
posted by tula at 10:06 AM on October 12, 2006


I heard on the Internet that Muslims hate MetaFilter. It's true.
posted by chunking express at 10:15 AM on October 12, 2006


but over there it has become institutionalized to the point where any political post often carries it because the partisans on the other side claim everything as a falsehood.

That sounds like an excellent idea, actually.
posted by b1tr0t at 11:09 AM on October 12, 2006


Digg: institutionalized... falsehood
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:36 AM on October 12, 2006


mathowie: "but over there it has become institutionalized to the point where any political post often carries it because the partisans on the other side claim everything as a falsehood."

Once enough people flag a post as inaccurate, a little line is added in the post heading that says something like "Note: This story has been marked as possibly inaccurate by digg users" or something like that. And it's not true that "any political post often carries it". Some political posts get the line added. Sometimes liberal posts, but mostly neocon posts.
posted by bob sarabia at 12:13 PM on October 12, 2006


This sort of idea came up at least once before in MetaTalk with an almost alternative universe post by Marquis linking some flash movies re August Strindberg and Helium to Monty Python. (In reality the two were not factually linked.) The post was a very cleverly done sort of art piece.

I appreciate that, but I also appreciate that I can generally count on the blue not to hoax me on purpose. If I carefully read a post on Meta and its comments and still don't pick up on the fact that it was a hoax, and then try to go talk about it knowledgably with others as though it's true, I'm going to ultimately look like an idiot. I make myself look like an idiot too many times on my own to be really comfortable with this. I'd really rather if Meta posts in the blue did not knowingly mislead people as a sort of trick. Except on April 1, and maybe Halloween.
posted by onlyconnect at 12:17 PM on October 12, 2006


I vote no. We'd miss the comedy of seeing the gullible bite on the hoax.
posted by Carbolic at 12:20 PM on October 12, 2006


I vote no.

Why are people always trying to "vote" on things in metatalk? Are they laboring under the sad misapprehension that this is some sort of democracy?
posted by dersins at 12:35 PM on October 12, 2006


"Why are people always trying to "vote" on things in metatalk America? Are they laboring under the sad misapprehension that this is some sort of democracy?"

Fixed that for you, dersins.

HTH
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 12:39 PM on October 12, 2006


Sorry. My opinion is no.
posted by Carbolic at 12:39 PM on October 12, 2006


Carbolic, I didn't quite catch what your take on this issue is. Are you for or against this idea?
posted by Krrrlson at 12:41 PM on October 12, 2006


metatalk America

Dammit, IRFH, the over / under on when someone was going to make that joke was set at 2 minutes after my initial post. And I, foolishly, bet the under.

Your tardiness with the punchline cost me $20. You owe me four sockpuppets.
posted by dersins at 12:47 PM on October 12, 2006


I'll take jagged glass dildo, 3... 2... 1... mark, False Dichotomy and Kettle. I don't want that fucker Pot, though.
posted by dersins at 12:49 PM on October 12, 2006


You'll get Nothing... and like it!


(if you want)
posted by Nothing... and like it at 12:55 PM on October 12, 2006 [1 favorite]


Of course I do. Now that I've quit my job, I'm too damn poor to buy my own sockpuppets.
posted by dersins at 1:21 PM on October 12, 2006


Can we finally just admit that Apple is the root of all evil and be done with it?
posted by eyeballkid at 1:35 PM on October 12, 2006


Don't you mean the core of all evil?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 1:37 PM on October 12, 2006


It's a totally lame sockpuppet name, dersins, even in context, but check your email.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 1:38 PM on October 12, 2006


Krrlson: Twas my apology to dersins for voting
posted by Carbolic at 1:50 PM on October 12, 2006


It's a totally lame sockpuppet name, dersins

Yeah, but it'll come in handy when people ask for pointless features to be added to the site.

posted by dersins at 1:55 PM on October 12, 2006


And it'll really only work if you keep giving the account away any time someone asks for a feature.

...which could be awesome.
posted by graventy at 4:44 PM on October 12, 2006


shh...you'll spoil the surprise...
posted by dersins at 4:58 PM on October 12, 2006


Don't you mean the core of all evil?

Beautiful pun, just...beautiful. It brought a tear to my eye, FloHen.
posted by Kwine at 5:28 PM on October 12, 2006


Thanks, Matt, that makes sense. The post sitting there on the front page, linking to "some Islamic website" that apparently doesn't exist, made me itch a little bit, is all.
posted by mediareport at 5:29 PM on October 12, 2006


Most misleading mefi posts get deleted when they're really that bad, but in this case, I think anyone reading about the thread will figure out it's kind of a hoax.

When I pointed out a post on the front page had demonstrably false information contained in it your response was to post my comments in the thread.

It still blows my mind that you would not edit or delete that post.
posted by mlis at 6:25 PM on October 12, 2006


MLIS, the thing was that one word was wrong in the post. If I removed California, it was fine. Anyone reading through the thread would pick that up but it seemed like a minor error to me. The remainder of the guy's post was correct.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 8:29 PM on October 12, 2006


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