This is chatfilter, AMIRITE folks? April 3, 2008 11:09 PM   Subscribe

Is this chatfilter?

The "question" mostly falls into the category of "asking the question and giving your own answer before getting the answers of others" but there's also a bit of "I'm curious if other people feel like I do" at play here.

It didn't inherently strike me as chatfilter because jjjjjjjijjjjjjj claimed it was for a paper, but as the comments continued the question seemed less like a legitimate query and more of a thesis made to generate discussion, particularly with the explanation of his thesis and when he (arguably) compared the thread to other forms of chatfilter.

I'd like to point out that I replied in the thread and that I'm not certain that it's explicitly chatfilter, but I would like to raise the question to hear everyone's thoughts on this. I would also like to mention that I have enjoyed jjjjjjjijjjjjjj's relatively few comments on the site and in no way mean this as an attack on him or his contributions to the site.
posted by dhammond to Etiquette/Policy at 11:09 PM (79 comments total)

MetaMeTa from the previous Misogynist Music AskMe. I realize you're not discussing the offensiveness, but if the first one stayed up, I assume this one will too.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:33 PM on April 3, 2008


Yeah, I think we were all on the fence about deleting it or not, and the old rap lyrics thread was the first thing I thought of it when I saw this question. I guess it just barely squeaks by.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 11:39 PM on April 3, 2008


No, I guess not, but it's tiresome. It's dull, it's overwritten, and best of all, it's homeworkfilter. As an added bonus, you've got the whole "we're not really talking about genuine misogyny if we all agree ahead of time to pretend to be clinical about it re: popular culture" thing going on.

I don't know the poster at all, and it's obviously come up before, but . . . ecchh.
posted by Skot at 11:43 PM on April 3, 2008 [3 favorites]


I don't know, but it's definitely got a nasty "hipster posturing through waxing academic about lowbrow things" vibe about it. I'm cool because I listen to rap music! But I'm not dumb like those black people! I know about Cultural Studies!
posted by nasreddin at 11:56 PM on April 3, 2008 [1 favorite]


So be forewarned... potential devolution into shit-slinging... all hell breaks loose... MetaFilter can and has handled gender/sexism well in the past... We got absolutely no hope...

Is it just me or does he spend a third of that post just saying, "SHITBERG STRAIGHT AHEAD!" ?
posted by katillathehun at 12:02 AM on April 4, 2008 [9 favorites]


I didn't get the vibe that folks were having "fun" coming up with sexist lyrics anymore than they have fun just answering AskMe questions about music in general, but the post is just incredibly bizarre. Really. The paragraph about Dr. Dre? It''s clearly editorializing and really has nothing to do with the question.

One of the issues is that jjjjjjjijjjjjjj's writing, in general, is just chatty -- which may be what led me to this MeTa but also, I think, raises a question or two about his intentions with the thread.
posted by dhammond at 12:16 AM on April 4, 2008


I flagged it, because:

it's chatfilter
poster asks a question that has no right answer
poster answers his own question
poster presents a long editorial about his rationale for his answer being best
the topic is offensive

I nearly posted this to metatalk, too, but instead I figured I'd just move on.
posted by ikkyu2 at 12:16 AM on April 4, 2008


It can't be chatfilter because anyone with any manners would know that's not a suitable subject for conversation, let alone an academic paper. Must we purge the academies and shoot some of the intelligentsia again?
posted by Abiezer at 12:27 AM on April 4, 2008


The part where it definitely becomes chatfilter for me is here when jjjjjjjijjjjjjj basically says that Eminem is putting on an act, and that what he is looking for are examples that are less staged.

But when talking about songs, they're all in a sense fiction to some degree. Especially the example given in the OP. I mean, that Cody Chestnutt guy isn't REALLY a pimp trying to convince girls to be prostitutes. It's a story song, just like Eminem's. It really seemed like jjjjjjjijjjjjjj picked a really bizarre and oblique song to exemplify misogyny and then waited for people to give their answers so that he could chat about why his answer is the best and why their answers are not the best.
posted by 23skidoo at 12:44 AM on April 4, 2008 [3 favorites]


Yeah, I'm gabby in real life, too. Some people don't cotton to it there, either. Most of the time it manifests itself in the girl at the pub making a flimsy excuse to leave your table, though, and not a full-on, embarrassing community-discussion of my gaffe.

(Unless the Womens' restroom at the pub is analogous to a MetaTalk that I will never be privy too... Which might be a new fear of mine).

But hey... It did get off-topic, and I'm largely to blame for that. I have a higher tolerance to bunny-trails and exploring them than your average person, and I can see how that might be frustrating. Nuke it from orbit, if that is what seems best.

I'd hate for you to think it was self-indulgence on my part, though, because I did enjoy the suggestions, and I was really edified by the discussions and the different opinions. My friends and I have a rather bombastic, frenetic (and sometimes confrontational) style of bouncing ideas around... We all think it's great, and we come away from it very charged and infused with new ideas and opinions... BUT I've seen many glimpses into what it must look like from the outside--a centerless, carousing, stream-of-consciousness redneck clusterfuck... It appears I brought some of that with me to this discussion, and I entirely sympathize with the voices saying that it was unwanted or disruptive.

So... sorry for the lack of focus. But thanks so much to the people who contributed songs and ideas to the thread. I learned a lot.

(and... this was never about any kind of academic essay. Some people write essays for fun, you know. This was for the 12th essay in a series of long-format [natch] 4-5k word... obsessive deconstructions of individual songs that have meant a lot to me. I started out just emailing them to my friends, but now they have a small but gracious group of boosters. As much as the individual songs suggested, I took a lot away from the discussion about... just... people's reactions to misogyny in songs, in general. I'm sorry I had to tear up the drapes and piss people off to do so, though...)

(oh, and... Sometimes the girl doesn't leave the table... sometimes she thinks it's interesting or something... [pleasant and non-threatening emoticon] )
posted by jjjjjjjijjjjjjj at 12:59 AM on April 4, 2008


His paper sucks, so I didn't flag it,
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 1:09 AM on April 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


(that doesn't even make any sense... If it sucked, why wouldn't you flag it? "That steak looked delicious... so I didn't eat it"... see? How much sense does that make?)
posted by jjjjjjjijjjjjjj at 1:19 AM on April 4, 2008


"I'm trying to write a paper on misogyny, can anyone give me a better film than Marnie for expressions of misogyny, because I will agttempt to prove, analytically, that Marnie is the most misogynistic film ever, please?" I'm consumed by disinterest for your paper, frankly. *shrug* It's not, for me, a problematic askme, just a terminally low-balled one. Most misogynist ever? That's a fine, fine grain, and I simply can't answer it among Zappa, Loretta Lynn, Pantera, etc. No idea.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 1:35 AM on April 4, 2008


And...

nasreddin: "hipster posturing through waxing academic about lowbrow things" vibe about it. I'm cool because I listen to rap music! But I'm not dumb like those black people!"

Utterly uncalled for. You show me one single thing that's even in the same fucking zip-code of suggesting "black people are dumb" or that my appreciation of hip-hop is superior to anyone else's. That's a really ugly accusation, and it is not even remotely warranted from anything that was said in the thread.

And rap's not fucking lowbrow. That's your own prejudice.

And there was nothing "waxing academic" about telling a goddamn anecdote about how Eminem worked to find a niche that allowed him to book shows. Off-topic, sure... meandering, fit me for the pillory... But it was a little (unasked for) shred of insight into the nuts and bolts of a musician's back-story. I don't think Derrida even came up once.
posted by jjjjjjjijjjjjjj at 1:39 AM on April 4, 2008


Don't get overexcited. I wasn't attacking you personally, just a class of people I happen to know many of--that's just the vibe I got from your question. (The Eminem story has nothing to do with that and was pretty interesting).
posted by nasreddin at 1:49 AM on April 4, 2008


So why is this cool, but I can't hear racist jokes? Maybe if I was working on an academic paper about them? Yeah, that's the ticket...
posted by Meatbomb at 2:59 AM on April 4, 2008 [3 favorites]


White guys can hear racist jokes, but they can't hear racist jokes. Just like Jimi.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 4:55 AM on April 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


You are right, nasreddin, why should jjjjjjjijjjjjjj get upset when you accuse him of being a racist? Oh, right, you weren't accusing him of being a racist, just saying you know lots of racists and he sounds just like them. Top marks for the combination of anti-intellectualism and bigotry in your original comment, by the way.
posted by ninebelow at 5:09 AM on April 4, 2008


This thread cannot be yanked until I queue the torrents for all of these.
posted by pieoverdone at 5:14 AM on April 4, 2008


Isn't this at least the third time we've had an Ask that wanted to collect misogynistic lyrics? The hunger is apparently insatiable.
posted by taz at 5:21 AM on April 4, 2008 [4 favorites]


Yeah, I feel antsy when people want to amass artifacts of misogyny (or any group hatred - racism, anti-semitism, etc). Because, it's like, what are you going to do with them? Burn them all in the city square? Or like, just pile them up and shine them up and show off how truly horrible, how sincerely detestable they are (with shining, glittering eyes)? I think that if you really buy into the idea that misogyny is everywhere you should have no trouble finding it. And if you don't, no one pointing it out to you is ever going to really open your eyes to it.

It's chatfilter because that sounds like no academic paper I've ever heard of. There is no "most misogynist song" and to assume such is to think there is one exact shade that is "most blue." Somewhere, there's a website collecting all these shining examples in one place to save all the most virulent misogynists a little leg work.

Metafilter: I know about Cultural Studies!
posted by SassHat at 5:40 AM on April 4, 2008 [4 favorites]


I flagged this post. I mean, the last time it was posted. And I posted in the MeTa about it then too. I actually had posted in the thread itself and then got thoroughly grossed out seeing how gleeful all the responses were. This time I stayed the fuck away from it. In my opinion there's no good in keeping it, at all. The premise is total bull and it's chatfilter. But it stayed up last time and stays up this time and hopefully it'll be a while longer until someone posts it yet again. It seems inevitable.
posted by loiseau at 5:53 AM on April 4, 2008


I dropped a note into the thread asking people if they could link to rather than post their lyrics (mostly ignored) and deleted some early Eminem debate and then dropped j7ij7 a note asking him to not turn the thread into MORE of an Eminem debate nd got a nice note back from him. Really it's not personally a sort of thread I like and the framing was a little off, but it's not against any rule we have and I thought most of the thread was pretty on-topic. I'm always interested in reading what people think the difference between misogyny and sexism is.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:22 AM on April 4, 2008


jjijijiiijjjiiijjjijiiiijjjjjjjjjiijjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjjj's overzealous and verbose intro does lend it a chatty aroma, and the repugnance of the topic increases the craptacularity of the stench a hundredfold. But, ultimately, the question is no more chatfilter than the hundreds of AskMes of the form "I'm making a mix for someone with the theme of X. Please give me a list of songs about X."
posted by googly at 6:30 AM on April 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


I am personally repelled by the notion that which song puts on its hate of womankind better than another is considered a great topic for discussion by anyone.

How many women have posted questions wanting to know the best “man-hate” songs?

I also find the way people leaped in with answers to be repellent, and I find the way the question was presented, as an academic question, even more reprehensible. I truly believe that there are other venues for this type of conjecture on the web.

I was a speaker at a conference on domestic violence, and my co-speaker was head of women’s studies at a university. Every woman in the audience had a story about how she had been put down verbally or threatened physically by a man. The topic was pathology of the victim, addressing the issue of the old saw “well, why was she with him anyway?” and similar statements. That sort of shame-producing question puts the blame of domestic violence on the victim instead of on the abuser where it belongs.

My question then, and now, is: why does society tolerate even one smidgeon of this behavior? Why do people buy the albums? Maybe it’s accepted that there will always be wife beaters and guys who put down women. So sad that it’s the norm and so sad that this kind of talk, chatty or not, is tolerated by so many of you.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 6:30 AM on April 4, 2008


This thread cannot be yanked until I queue the torrents for all of these.

No seeds for Cody Chesnutt, sadly.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 6:30 AM on April 4, 2008


While I did flag the post, I am sort of glad it remained. It gives more support to one I'm still crafting on the subject of "Academically speaking, which that would you most like to totally hit?"
posted by Drastic at 6:45 AM on April 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


My question then, and now, is: why does society tolerate even one smidgeon of this behavior? Why do people buy the albums? Maybe it’s accepted that there will always be wife beaters and guys who put down women.

So perhaps I can explain the distinction that I make. Songs are like stories. They aren't necessarily real, or even a real reflection of the author's opinions or intentions, but serve a variety of purposes and functions. I'm perfectly happy to buy 'art' that depicts situations that I disapprove of, or disagree with, and I don't insist that it has 'improving or redeeming qualities'. It doesn't even have to be 'good', because all those are subjective judgements and my own take on them will invariably differ from just about everyone else's.

That said, I was recently called out on the blue for drawing attention to the fact that Tupac Shakur isn't just a reader of religious and self-improving literature, but also happens to be a convicted gang rapist. Apparently, some people here feel that even actual gang rape isn't something that we should be judgemental about.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 6:50 AM on April 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


I am personally repelled by the notion that which song puts on its hate of womankind better than another is considered a great topic for discussion by anyone.

Well, it's a sticky thing. The fundamental topic is pure ugliness, but in a world full of ugliness we get a lot of art riffing on same. If there's value in art, and the art can be founded in ugliness, then we end up with these weird situations where repulsion and appreciation sort of come together in a way that's kind of inseparable. And folks have every right to be repelled by the discussion based on the raw materials, because in the end it's still very much an ugly joint, but I personally tend to find the topics interesting despite the air of repulsiveness, etc.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:20 AM on April 4, 2008 [3 favorites]


Also I pretty much feel now that we've had two variants of the same AskMe question, we never have to see that one again. Last AskMe, Last MeTa about last AskMe.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:23 AM on April 4, 2008


The part where it definitely becomes chatfilter for me is here when jjjjjjjijjjjjjj basically says that Eminem is putting on an act, and that what he is looking for are examples that are less staged.

Yep, that's where I drew the line, too. A recorded song = performance. And therefore staged. Also, I'd like to say this in response to almost every example given in the thread: sexism is not misogyny.
posted by desuetude at 7:47 AM on April 4, 2008


Thank you for the thoughtful answers. I'm not for censorship, I'm just trying to understand the interest in the topic. I've seen some pretty interesting art pieces, very repelling, yet fascinating at the same time, on any manner of topic. I'm still trying to figure out the meaning to Push by Matchbox 20, which song creeps me out.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 8:10 AM on April 4, 2008


sexism is not misogyny.
posted by desuetude at 10:47 AM on April 4


Exactly. Telling a woman to "know her role" does not constitute a hatred of women.

I think where misogyny and sexism intersect are the labels "slut," "dirty girl," etc. A dirty girl is a woman who likes sex. You know what another word for that is? Normal. A girl whose interest in sex is normal and admits it becomes dirty or a slut. When guys throw these labels around, a few things are happening in their heads:

1. They resent that the dirty girl in question won't have sex with them. This isn't a joke. They resent the "slut" for denying them something that they appear to give away freely, which makes them feel inadequate with respect to other men.
2. Sex is purely an aspect of power. It is a medium of exchange in the power dynamic between men and women. The more sex a women gives away, the more power she gets.
3. An expression of a latent fear that if all women had sex whenever they wanted, men would lose all power and control over women, and women would have all power. These men who harbor this fear feel they will lose their power without receiving the sex in exchange, hence women are "robbing" them of their power.
3. The fact that they attach a pejorative label to the women reinforces their delusion that they have power in society (because they're the ones doing the labeling).

Th very fascinating thing about misogyny is how well it dovetails with homophobia. Men who have sex with other men aren't simply homosexuals, they are "fags" or fairies or sissies, i.e. they are like women. That they hate gay men for being like women makes it clear that they also hate women for being women.
posted by Pastabagel at 8:17 AM on April 4, 2008 [6 favorites]


Just as another previous to related discussion: Homophobic song lyrics Meta
posted by John Kenneth Fisher at 8:32 AM on April 4, 2008


I was put-off by jjjjjjjijjjjjjj sticking around the post and challenging responses. You don't argue with the Magic 8-Ball! You let it loll isohedrally in blue bubbles and then bask in its wisdom.
posted by cowbellemoo at 8:34 AM on April 4, 2008 [5 favorites]


"Must we purge the academies and shoot some of the intelligentsia again?"

Boy, when you're in China, everything looks like a nail, huh?

It's chatfilter because that sounds like no academic paper I've ever heard of.

Journal of Bitch and Ho Study?
posted by klangklangston at 8:34 AM on April 4, 2008


katillathehun : Is it just me or does he spend a third of that post just saying, "SHITBERG STRAIGHT AHEAD!" ?

'Shitberg' is my new favorite word, thanks for that.

I think that part of the problem is that Metafilter has a really low threshold for misogynistic content, even when it's being discussed in the sense of being a negative thing. I could easily have asked a similar question:

I believe Flashback by Ministry to be the most violent song ever written, and I'm putting together a paper with that as my theme. However, I fully admit that I have not heard every song out there and I want to make certain that my premise is not flawed at the outset. What are some songs that might be considered more violent?

And it probably wouldn't have raised an eyebrow despite being formatively fairly similar.
posted by quin at 8:41 AM on April 4, 2008


And by 'problem' I mean, why it keeps coming to metatalk. I don't think our general disdain of misogyny is necessarily a bad thing.
posted by quin at 8:42 AM on April 4, 2008


Rap is lowbrow. Almost as low as country.
posted by neuron at 8:55 AM on April 4, 2008


oh no you dang ol' din't
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:03 AM on April 4, 2008 [2 favorites]


And it probably wouldn't have raised an eyebrow despite being formatively fairly similar.


People in that thread are debating the nuances of sexism vs. misogyny. I think everyone can agree on violence.
posted by 23skidoo at 9:25 AM on April 4, 2008


Quin, violence is not like misogyny (or racism, antisemitism, homophobia, etc.), in that anyone can be a victim of violence, but only some people can be a victim of misogyny. A more fair comparison would be what's the most racist song ever? It's for my paper.

Opinion will obviously differ about how fine that is, or not, and where to draw the line. What's the most degrading image of a woman you've ever seen? Post it here! The most pain you ever heaped on a homosexual/jew/black person? Let us know! I'm collecting anecdotes because I have an intellectual curiosity about it.

Is that an exaggeration? Yes, of course... but only just. Posts that ask for a lot of examples of tropes that perpetuate injustice and cause pain to some people, while others revel in it for exactly that reason are pretty sketchy, I'd say.
posted by taz at 9:33 AM on April 4, 2008 [3 favorites]


I will be forever grateful for that thread because it has gauchodaspampas' comment which rehabilitated Baby, It's Cold Outside for me. Also, I got to talk about Megas, which warms an Icelander's heart.
posted by Kattullus at 9:48 AM on April 4, 2008


Rap is lowbrow. Almost as low as country.

Musical genres aren't high or lowbrow, just specific songs/musicians/bands. And even then I hate that distinction and think it's more problematic than useful. Also I don't understand how it's in any way different from classism.
posted by Tehanu at 9:53 AM on April 4, 2008


I will be forever grateful for that thread because it has gauchodaspampas' comment which rehabilitated Baby, It's Cold Outside for me.

I can't believe anyone had to defend that song. mandymanwasregistered's comment has to be a joke. Right?
posted by dobbs at 10:05 AM on April 4, 2008


I can't believe anyone had to defend that song. mandymanwasregistered's comment has to be a joke. Right?

Maybe there was some sort of meme-thingy or interview with a famous person or something that characterized Baby It's Cold Outside as "the icky date rape song?" It seems to me (yeah, confirmation bias, I know) that I've heard this sentiment a lot in the last couple of years, before which time it seemed that the song had kind of fallen out of the canon and was not well-known.

Me, I not only always loved that song, but have new revitalized love for Howe Gelb's version. Oh, and coy persuasion is not date rape, FFS.
posted by desuetude at 11:13 AM on April 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


Dude, using the threat of hypothermia and severe frostbite to get your freak on by the fire place is not cool.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:15 AM on April 4, 2008


Hah, "cool".
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:15 AM on April 4, 2008


You know, I gave this a little more thought, and something occurred to me: this thread (and others like it) is why I'm ashamed to tell my real-life friends and colleagues that I have anything to do with MetaFilter. I have friends and co-workers and clients who are educated, normal, civilized people. They would look at a thread like this for what it is - a steaming pile of dung - and immediately lower their opinion of me for having anything to do with a site that sponsored and endorsed this kind of discussion.

There are plenty of places on the Internet for spiteful, crass trolls to get together and roll around in the sewage that they've created. Misogyny and Internet discussion seem to go hand in hand. MeFi is more effective in raising the level of discourse than a lot of other places but I think the ball got dropped here. And it's not new; this particular ball keeps getting dropped. I know that occhiblu and a lot of others aren't comfortable in the environment that these kinds of posts create, and recreate over and over and over again - occhiblu, for instance, was very clear that this attitude of willful blindness to hateful topics was what drove her away from the site.

mathowie: I guess it just barely squeaks by.

In my opinion you're damaging your community every time you make this decision this way.
posted by ikkyu2 at 11:17 AM on April 4, 2008 [5 favorites]


I flagged that AskMe as pretentious, performative, GYOBF, boring, been there done that, liked-Stone-Temple-Pilots-better-the-first-time-when-they-were-called-Pearl-Jam and DTMFTA (Dump That Motherfucking Thesis Already).
posted by sneakin at 11:20 AM on April 4, 2008


They would look at a thread like this for what it is - a steaming pile of dung - and immediately lower their opinion of me

Then they're not your real friends, sweetie.

[Audience: Awwwww.]
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:22 AM on April 4, 2008


I've heard this sentiment a lot in the last couple of years, before which time it seemed that the song had kind of fallen out of the canon and was not well-known.


Probably, "Baby it's Cold Outside" was re-popularized in 2005 when it was the title of the first episode of Curtis' "The Power of Nightmares". Video.
posted by Burhanistan at 11:23 AM on April 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'd blame Zoey Deschanel, Burhanistan.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:25 AM on April 4, 2008


In my opinion you're damaging your community every time you make this decision this way.

I, too, don't understand why this thread was allowed to stay, for a number of reasons other than the reasons mentioned by ikkyu2 above: we've deleted similar questions before and argued about them in MeTa before, the poster is an admitted "sockpuppet/AskMeFi question force-multiplyer", and it was probably flagged to hell. As long as the rules are randomly applied in an arbitrary fashion, look forward to a Metatalk thread on every post that toes line, and they're all gonna be fights to the death.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 11:37 AM on April 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


Maybe there was some sort of meme-thingy or interview with a famous person or something that characterized Baby It's Cold Outside as "the icky date rape song?"

Definitely curious. I did a little googling, and it seems like people touch on it from a lot of different angles, so I'd guess it's not all that meme-driven even if there's been an uptick of discussion of it thanks to recent covers or whatever. Some findings:

Previous [2, 3] askme mention of Baby, It's Cold Outside as misogynistic.

A line by line analysis of the song as "the date rape Christmas carol"; an analysis of the reactions to same.

"It's like watching and episode of Special Victim's Unit!"

"Meatloaf was all like, "I really can't stay" and Robert Goulet was all like, "Baby, it's cold outside."

And, as weird capstone on it all, the mild implication of the song in the creation of Al Qaeda, from an article on the Bhutto assassination.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:42 AM on April 4, 2008 [2 favorites]


Alvy&: Then they're not your real friends, sweetie.

No, they are my real friends. They are valuable people; they are intelligent, articulate, kind, just, well-educated, competent people, like me; and like me, they do not suffer fools gladly.

What is more, I agree with the opinion I'm putting into their mouths here. I don't want to be associated with a discussion like this in any way.
posted by ikkyu2 at 11:49 AM on April 4, 2008


desuetude: Maybe there was some sort of meme-thingy or interview with a famous person or something that characterized Baby It's Cold Outside as "the icky date rape song?"

I think it's a consequence of society becoming more aware of date raping. I first heard the song back in the 2001 or 2002. When returning to it a couple of years later I was struck by squickiness, but gauchodaspampas' comment made me realize that to make it a date rape song I'd have to conceptualize the woman as completely powerless and virginal, a Little Red Riding Hood to the male's Big Bad Wolf. That was pretty sexist of me.
posted by Kattullus at 12:03 PM on April 4, 2008


I don't want to be associated with a discussion like this in any way.

It's quite obvious that your opinion regarding that AskMe isn't laudatory, so I have trouble understanding why you're worried about it tainting you - if someone were to hold you accountable for every sentiment or opinion expressed on MeFi, they would be gratified to see you registering your opposition in a dialogue regarding the issue, wouldn't they?

As long as the rules are randomly applied in an arbitrary fashion, look forward to a Metatalk thread on every post that toes line, and they're all gonna be fights to the death.

Hard and fast rules carved in stone would make MeTa completely redundant. While we could argue whether that would be such a loss, ditching the guidlines administered and eforced by fair, intelligent people who are willing to discuss things with the community would be a far great blow to the community than an vulgar collection of asinine rhymes.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:05 PM on April 4, 2008


I'm ashamed to tell my real-life friends and colleagues that I have anything to do with MetaFilter. I have friends and co-workers and clients who are educated, normal, civilized people. They would look at a thread like this for what it is - a steaming pile of dung - and immediately lower their opinion of me for having anything to do with a site that sponsored and endorsed this kind of discussion.

It is a dung-heap ikkyu2, there's no doubt about it. But you might take some solace in knowing that you are one of its indisputed kings... well, at least in the green pile.

I take my own solace in the fact that, while I'm a compulsive commenter in the Blue, I'm still somewhat anonymous here.
posted by psmealey at 12:07 PM on April 4, 2008


if someone were to hold you accountable for every sentiment or opinion expressed on MeFi, they would be gratified to see you registering your opposition in a dialogue regarding the issue, wouldn't they?

Yes, if they bothered to look that far, which they wouldn't. By your logic I should sign onto Fark or SomethingAwful or rotten.com or ogrish.com forums with my real name and start complaining about everything that's on there. No; instead I don't associate myself with that kind of garbage. And I don't like to see it here either.
posted by ikkyu2 at 12:31 PM on April 4, 2008


What, no comparisons to Stormfront? By my logic, I thought we were talking about MetaFilter, a site with thousands of members who express thousands of opinions, and how ridiculous it is to hold someone accountable for each and every one of them.
I still haven't forgiven you for Kaycee Nicole, btw.

The fact that discussion regarding site administration is actively encouraged blows your ridiculous comparisons out of the water. It must be exhausting trying to find newspapers, websites, books, and music worthy of your friends' approbation.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:53 PM on April 4, 2008


In the interest of helping, I almost posted a link to some An*l C*nt lyrics. Until I snapped out of it and realized that:

A. "Most. Misogynist. EVER." combines the worst parts of Comic Book Guy and a 5th grade playground discussion

B. A cursory Google search brings up far worse lyrics than the "Most misogynist song ever" proposed in the question

C. An*l C*nt doesn't need my help, and I hate that I've ever heard them

D. The question could be easily rephrased to not be HomeworkFilter, and maybe lead to some interesting insights, but it wasn't

E. I couldn't find any value to ranking songs this way. Does ranking genocides in order of awfulness do anything to prevent further atrocities? Or is this type of thinking a way of compartmentalizing and abstracting guilt, converting it to surreptitious enjoyment? Maybe it's well-intentioned but just inadequate to address the Big Issue? Either way, meh

F. I needed a refill on this plate o' beans and my waiter was busy
posted by dosterm at 12:56 PM on April 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


Should we add in the "your mom" song thread to this discussion? It ended up with a couple nasty songs as well. (I even commented there, then realized what I was doing upon listening to one of the nastier suggestions.)

In the blue, the community function can filter the content ("that's disgusting -- you listen to that??"), but in the green, all the answers are just ...answers. To a messed-up question. Want to listen to songs about how someone sexually enslaved someone else's mom? Hey, we've got ideas for you!

I can see both sides of it but generally agree with koeselitz in the previous Meta.

dead_: "[Mysoginistic hip-hop] is incredibly fascinating and worthy of a much deeper look than even many of the best essays have given it."

The place for giving it that in-depth look sure as shit isn't in a stupid, juvenile AskMe that just asks people to list off those lyrics to win a contest.

Delete it. Nothing will be lost. And somebody can build a nice post for the front page of metafilter if they feel as though this is an important and relevant topic to be discussed.


There are no law-breaking AskMes. It would be an equally valid rule to say there are no AskMes where the questions essentially promote assault or discrimination. That stuff could be reserved for the blue where a wider discussion could occur. There could be exceptions for the most legitimate questions ("I'm looking for a particular image of Nazi propaganda for my dissertation... This is not to request every degrading image ever created.") Setting a rule like this could be considered a bit hall monitor-ish, I admit. But I do not think it would be a bad thing to say "you know, finding misogynistic lyrics is not something this community was created to help with."
posted by salvia at 1:34 PM on April 4, 2008


I find myself in total agreement with ikkyu2's argument for deleting the thread, while at the same time wanting to avoid any action that might encourage his Übermenschen pals to come here.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 1:41 PM on April 4, 2008 [1 favorite]


Recommending MeFi (or just AskMe even) is like recommending a newspaper or radio or television program. Holding you even slightly responsible for all of its content is a bit unreasonable.

If you say to someone "Yeah, I read the New York Times," and then they run some expose on misogynist song lyrics are you going to be held in a worse light? Of course not.

It does seem somewhat different, doesn't it? It feels as though MeFi is somewhat less "legitimate" and that we attach our reputation to it. Is the difference because MeFi isn't traditional media? Is it because MeFi is more user controlled?
posted by ODiV at 1:42 PM on April 4, 2008


Make that "Recommending MeFi should be like recommending a newspaper..." and "...responsible for all of its content seems a bit unreasonable."

because honestly, it doesn't feel the same for some reason.
posted by ODiV at 1:44 PM on April 4, 2008


I made an executive decision to close that thread down. We've pulled similar threads. I was hoping people could just link to stuff and give suggestions but really starting an AskMe thread with "suck it bitch" on the main page set things off to a bad foot, and then the continued horror show that was all those lyrics [they're still there, people can still go see them] I think this is for the best. If people want to pile-on about it, they're more than welcome to. We don't allow revengefilter or rantfilter questions here, I think it's maybe a good idea to expand that to stuff like this. I'll apologize to j7ij7 personally.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 1:52 PM on April 4, 2008 [2 favorites]


Jessamyn, thank you.
posted by loiseau at 2:19 PM on April 4, 2008


Yeah, I kinda feel like the problem was more that the question was badly-written. I dunno. I kind of feel like it's a good thing to make AskMe as open as possible to people's questions, and I'd oppose the sort of compassion-creep that Salvia proposed above, but it was a crummy, chatty question and got crummy, chatty answers. I realize that "quality" is the hardest thing to mod on and defend, but here I think that you made the right call.
posted by klangklangston at 2:22 PM on April 4, 2008


I think it's a consequence of society becoming more aware of date raping. I first heard the song back in the 2001 or 2002. When returning to it a couple of years later I was struck by squickiness, but gauchodaspampas' comment made me realize that to make it a date rape song I'd have to conceptualize the woman as completely powerless and virginal, a Little Red Riding Hood to the male's Big Bad Wolf. That was pretty sexist of me.

I think it's terribly sad if so many people are perceiving any hint of persuasion as a veiled threat. I think that your Little Red Riding analogy hits it square on the head, and describes why I do find it sexist to characterize Baby It's Cold Outside as a date rape song.

I dunno, a zillion beloved pop songs have the same "baby don't leave wink wink" message. This song is just wittier and better-rhyming than "stay, just a little bit longer, please please please tell me you're going to. Now your daddy don't mind, and your momma don't mind, if we have another dance. Oh, won't you stay just a little bit longer, please let me stay here, please say that you will. Won't you place your sweet lips on mine. Won't you say you love me all of the time. Why won't you stay..."
posted by desuetude at 2:32 PM on April 4, 2008


I made an executive decision to close that thread down.

Good. Thanks.
posted by languagehat at 4:45 PM on April 4, 2008


Happy to hear about the deletion.

Bu to expand on my "I can see both sides of it" bit above, my 4:30 pm self has a different opinion than my 1:30 self. We don't allow "how do I kill someone?" questions but we do allow "I'd like to read accounts about serial killers." So, banning entire topics like that is probably not the way to go. "I'd like to learn about racism." "No! We don't discuss that. Discussing racist ideas spreads them!" That seems too much like being the thought police. I'm definitely of two minds at the moment.
posted by salvia at 4:59 PM on April 4, 2008


I think we are, too, which is why it was a fence issue with a late-breaking decision. I think it's safe to say none of us are interested in proscribing specific topics, but how more contentious topics are (a) presented initially and (b) dealt with in-thread is going to make the difference between difficult-but-valuable discussions and not-worth-the-effort messes.
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:38 PM on April 4, 2008


Thanks for shutting it down. That was a creepy thread.
posted by Stewriffic at 6:40 PM on April 4, 2008


questions essentially promote assault or discrimination.

Wow it just got a little PMRC in here. Works of art express a point of view. A song expresses a point of view of a character or narrator (who may or may not be closely related to the author).

If there were no characters who express negative points of view, we would have no villains, no tragedies, no conflict, and thus no narrative art of any kind.

I'm not protesting the question being deleted, but the pro-censorship arguments are getting a little creepy.
posted by drjimmy11 at 8:00 PM on April 4, 2008


The "say what's in that drink?" part of "Baby It's Cold Outside" is the one part that kind of implies date rape to me. But it kind of depends on the delivery.

I...was kind of bothered by the sexism vs. misogyny hairsplitting that was going on though.
posted by SoftRain at 9:12 PM on April 4, 2008


X makes me uncomfortable, therefore X should not be up for discussion = lame.
posted by stinkycheese at 11:52 AM on April 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


X smells bad, and is not a good dancer.
posted by taz at 12:50 AM on April 6, 2008


X had a killer debut album, produced by Ray Manzarek, of all people.
posted by Kattullus at 7:14 AM on April 6, 2008


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