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October 4, 2008 11:16 PM   Subscribe

Obviously we all love Metafilter or we wouldn't be here posting and reading day after day... But, if there was one thing you could change/modify about your Metafilter experience, what would it be?
posted by amyms to MetaFilter-Related at 11:16 PM (260 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

Okay, I'll go first (since "chatfilter" is allowed in MetaTalk): I wish there was a way to see more than the "10 most recent" comments in the "Recent Activity" tab.
posted by amyms at 11:24 PM on October 4, 2008


I'd magically make it a european site.
posted by zia at 11:28 PM on October 4, 2008 [2 favorites]


I think there's a real need for a BookFilter subsite. I keep hoping to build it myself if I can find the time.
posted by gsteff at 11:42 PM on October 4, 2008 [2 favorites]


All politics posts would be deleted instantly.
posted by Class Goat at 11:43 PM on October 4, 2008 [3 favorites]


Each time I have to flag a stupid comment, the author receives 10,000 volts to the groin.
posted by chrisamiller at 12:05 AM on October 5, 2008 [5 favorites]


Everybody on the site would meet each other in person on a regular basis.

One thing that attracts me to Metafilter is its similarity to an old-school BBS, both in its format and in the quality of its user base. However, there is one crucial difference between the two - the user base of a given BBS was usually constrained to a single area code, given the costs of long-distance telephony at the time. Thus, there was a limit to how bitter the arguments and grudges could get. After all, it's difficult to stay mad at someone who you see every month, especially over something petty and stupid.

MeFi doesn't have any sort of in-person community like this. Although there are city-wide meetups, the fact is that you'll probably never meet 90% of the contributors on the site.

However, I see this not as a fault in MeFi, but in the Internet itself. And, unfortunately, the only solution I've found is to cut back on my participation in message boards, and when I do participate, to take the whole thing a lot less seriously.
posted by Afroblanco at 12:11 AM on October 5, 2008 [10 favorites]


I was going to say something silly but...

BookFilter! Yay BooFi!

I get ridiculously excited at the thought of a BookFilter subsite. Here are a couple of comments of mine from an old thread hashing out what I'd like BooFi to be.

Boo! Fi! (the idea of it just gets me excited, I can't help it)
posted by Kattullus at 12:15 AM on October 5, 2008 [3 favorites]


A midi version of the song Everybody Hurts by REM is embedded into the "Do you want to delete your account?" page.
posted by hellojed at 12:18 AM on October 5, 2008 [40 favorites]


Private or non-favorite favorites. I often favorite things as examples of some thing other than my endorsement of what they've said.
posted by iamkimiam at 12:25 AM on October 5, 2008 [10 favorites]


Swear words automatically scrambled so as to duck the stupid restrictions imposed by work's Nanny-filter/web-proxy.
posted by Ritchie at 12:47 AM on October 5, 2008


Cake.
posted by iamabot at 12:56 AM on October 5, 2008


Everyone would see all the issues my way, be unable to hold back from wittily, cleverly, and/or eloquently expressing their support for my point of view, and continually laud my clear and correct comments.
posted by carsonb at 12:58 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


As always, carsonb has got it exactly right and summed it up perfectly. I stand by his comment 100%.
posted by Elmore at 1:20 AM on October 5, 2008 [3 favorites]


Carsonb also looks very handsome today, don't you think?
posted by Jofus at 1:29 AM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


Yeah, but he's no cake.
posted by davejay at 1:43 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm fairly new around here so tend to get a little annoyed when a perfectly fun and interesting thread (to me at least) gets unceremoniously yanked because it was previously posted at some point in the perhaps distant past.

I understand that doubles are mostly verboten, and for generally good reason. But what about something like a CLASSIC FILTER for certain select situations ... because those who repeat the past are condemned to ... errr, remember it?
posted by philip-random at 1:47 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'd like to see search results include the number of comments in each thread.
posted by bunnytricks at 2:03 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


FREE HUGS!
posted by crossoverman at 2:04 AM on October 5, 2008


What would it be? Your post title! A MeFi Suggestion Box. A low-key, no-pressure place to drop your suggestion(s) for the site without the need to make a MeTa post. It would be something for the admins to take a look at every so often and think about. Something not open to comments like a normal MeTa thread. Maybe the suggestions could have a "vote for it" button, like we have on Projects. But maybe not even that... Anyway, a place to suggest site changes, features or improvements, without all the stuff that a MeTa thread entails. And anyone wanting to make a MeTa post instead of using the Suggestion Box would, obviously, still be free to do so.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 2:14 AM on October 5, 2008


You know, I think philip-random may be onto something with CLASSIC FILTER. Maybe pb can whip up some way to allow old posts with still-valid links to be "promoted" to the present front page and reopened for comments for a month, as if new again. ClassicFilter. I like this idea. I think it's got legs!
posted by cgc373 at 2:14 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Maybe we as users (we're users goddammit!) could choose old posts and post 'em as if new again? Maybe they have to be more than, I dunno, four years old? Five years? Something like that.
posted by cgc373 at 2:16 AM on October 5, 2008


A couple of months ago, yarrow suggested we add Related Posts links to the blue, like the ones we now have for AskMe. A few people liked the idea but mathowie kinda glossed right by it. I'm not sure he saw it. I like this idea as well as I like ClassicFilter; it almost serves the same purpose, except ClassicFilter would open comments on the old posts, where Related links would just give 'em some visibility, without interactivity.
posted by cgc373 at 2:21 AM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


Man, I want another Givewell-style takedown. That was fun. Through careful observation and logical reasoning, we exposed a couple of unsympathetic wrong-doers. Very Encyclopedia Brown.
posted by ryanrs at 2:29 AM on October 5, 2008


All leftist politics posts would be deleted instantly, and names changed to protect the innocent.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 4:33 AM on October 5, 2008


Maybe we as users (we're users goddammit!) could choose old posts and post 'em as if new again?

An almost heartbreaking amount of old posts feature dead links, however. Ah, it's all so ephemeral...
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:01 AM on October 5, 2008


More drugs. More groupies.
posted by jonmc at 5:03 AM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


Deletions. Deletions of posts, deletions of comments. Going back a page and finding this weird gap between my memory and what's in front of me. It's like it never happened. I know otherwise, so there's this momentary "have I gone mad?" thing while my brain tries to synch its internal map with the new reality.

1) I'd like to see just a tiny bug splatter where that comment or post was. Perhaps a symbol. Perhaps the original post, but in incredibly small text. Maybe if you click it you could see the original. Maybe not. But something that indicates that, yes, text was present here at once, but now it has been squashed.

2) Non-flip deletion reasons. I've modded other communities before. Being flip is fun. It's faster than explaining what's been done wrong. It's also completely non-educational. Some people know they're screwing up when they're doing it; some people refuse to learn no matter what you tell them. That does not mean that there are people who would not learn and adapt from seeing a deletion reason besides "haha, you're kidding, right?" It can help train the disappointed poster. It can help train people who see the deletion reason. It can help prevent OMG WHY WAS MY AGELESS POST DELETED YOU JACKBOOTED THUGS?!? threads. Can. Not will, for all of you instant objectors.
posted by adipocere at 5:12 AM on October 5, 2008 [4 favorites]


More explosions.
posted by Eideteker at 5:28 AM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


*explodes*

I hope you are satisfied.
posted by jonmc at 5:31 AM on October 5, 2008


Everybody on the site would meet each other in person on a regular basis.

uhm. no, thank you. some people would have to shower more often.
posted by krautland at 5:39 AM on October 5, 2008


I do kinda wish people would pay more attention to their post titles. In feeds and on various aggregator sites, it's a bit embarrassing to have a well-researched post about Victorian candlemaking, for example, represented by the title "OMG CANDLES DURF!!!11!!!"

OK, that never happened, but you get what I'm trying to say.
posted by milquetoast at 5:41 AM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


*steps gingerly over pieces of post-explosion jonmc, grabs a few choice volumes off Strand bookshelf, slips them into oversize overcoat, and heads toward the exit*
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:42 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'd allow image tags once a year. Kind of like an amnesty.
posted by chuckdarwin at 5:46 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'd ban __________________________ .
posted by cmonkey at 6:15 AM on October 5, 2008


Although there are city-wide meetups, the fact is that you'll probably never meet 90% of the contributors on the site.

I thought we were having the First Metafilter World Convention next year and that jessamyn was making pancakes for all of us.
posted by lukemeister at 6:23 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


actually i guess it would look more like
+------------------------------+
| Congratulations, CMONKEY     |
|                              |
| You have won 1 chance to ban |
| a user of your choice.  This |
| offer expires on 31.12.2008. |
| Choose wisely.               |
+------------------------------+
posted by cmonkey at 6:25 AM on October 5, 2008 [6 favorites]


No more damn hippies.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 6:26 AM on October 5, 2008


But what about something like a CLASSIC FILTER for certain select situations

I like this idea! And I think that site should look something like this!
posted by soundofsuburbia at 6:26 AM on October 5, 2008 [6 favorites]


Bring back the Pissing Elephants.
posted by JeffK at 6:33 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Nice animated graphic, soundofsuburbia!
posted by cgc373 at 6:42 AM on October 5, 2008


I wish the Best Answers vs. All Answers ratio was calculated and displayed in a member's profile.
posted by nitsuj at 7:04 AM on October 5, 2008


Also: being able to see if a post you flagged (negatively) was actually deleted or not. I often wonder if what I flagged was done so appropriately, and having this data will probably result in more accurate flagging. Short of favoring a negative (which goes against my favoring philosophy) there's not much I can do to easily find out what the result was. So maybe, somewhere in your profile (private or otherwise), there's a list of all posts and comments you've flagged negatively, along with whether they were deleted or not.
posted by nitsuj at 7:07 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


CLASSIC FILTER

Or like this.
posted by event at 7:08 AM on October 5, 2008


Followups.
posted by jfuller at 7:27 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Naked Mondays.
posted by jonmc at 7:32 AM on October 5, 2008


In my fantasy metafilter:

Sarah Palin posts are deleted on sight.

mathowie plays a larger role in ordinary conversations.

I have more time to read and participate in threads.
posted by anotherpanacea at 7:34 AM on October 5, 2008


An API to store arbitrary data per-user, so that Greasemonkey scripts could be synchronized across multiple computers.
posted by Plutor at 7:51 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Man, I want another Givewell-style takedown. That was fun. Through careful observation and logical reasoning, we exposed a couple of unsympathetic wrong-doers. Very Encyclopedia Brown.

Actually Holden Karnofsky is doing just fine, having been reappointed to his position after the heat died down, and Givewell still has a good name on the first page of Google results (the Metatalk thread is there but the summary and title don't look interesting.)

So my wish is that next time Metafilter raids someone we do a better job.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 7:51 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'd get paid whenever I posted a comment that wasn't "fighty."
posted by klangklangston at 7:54 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


being able to see if a post you flagged (negatively)

How would the system know if your flag was negative?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:56 AM on October 5, 2008


VideoFilter. For original Flash films.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:07 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Bring back the IMG tag.

More hypotheticals in AskMe.
posted by blue_beetle at 8:27 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Bring back the IMG tag.

...with limited use. New users (date of reg? number of comments?) are restricted.... as is number of times that any user can use IMG tag in [given period] (days, weeks?). If you post NSFW or above a certain file size, you get one warning. On second violation, you lose IMG privs forever, which will be known as the imghammer.

And if you can jump through all those hoops and you STILL want to post an image, then it might even be a decent and entertaining one, that adds to the conversation.
posted by pineapple at 8:44 AM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


I wouldn't want images in every thread all the time but I do wish we had limited ability to post images. Maybe once a week or something?

Also, this place is really incredibly square when it comes to sex. Sorry, but it is.
posted by stinkycheese at 8:55 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Live videofeeds of the mods' faces as they are reading this thread.
posted by ersatz at 8:59 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


We'd spend a lot less time talking about politics and the economy and much more time talking about what's to be done with that sexy scoundrel Navelgazer.
posted by Navelgazer at 9:00 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Double the super-censorship as the first step in a very slippery slope toward superduper-censorship and, ultimately, supercalifragilisticexpialadocious-censorship. If Mefi wants to be at the forefront in the liberoqueer fascist agenda, you better start acting like it and oppress some conservative light-bringers.
posted by stavrogin at 9:01 AM on October 5, 2008


Yes; every friday an thread that allows IMG tags.
posted by jouke at 9:12 AM on October 5, 2008


But yeah, there are some ideas and emotions that can only be expressed in images. Like this one.
posted by Navelgazer at 9:12 AM on October 5, 2008 [4 favorites]


I really like the idea of a Bookfilter and thought about making something similar some months ago. Sadly, history has demonstrated that it'll probably not work unless something has changed since 2006.
posted by Memo at 9:18 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


2nding adipocere. Some kind of marker to show that comment/s have been deleted would make many threads a lot more comprehensible. No names, to prevent users from racking up martyr points, just a timestamp and "comment deleted" or something.

Also, the ability to edit your own comments, maybe limited to 5 or 10 minutes after posting. Live Preview is great, but I still miss some boo-boos. (Although, some of the "Oops!" errata are quite amusing ... might be a shame to lose those.)
posted by Quietgal at 9:20 AM on October 5, 2008


I do miss the image tag but it was getting out hand when it taken away. Image and Flash Friday sounds good.

Classic Filter is a good idea.

I would love a Book Filter. Then I can tell you all about the hundreds of books I have.....hehehehehehe........
posted by bjgeiger at 9:27 AM on October 5, 2008


This has been mentioned before, but: an anonymous-comment system, so that folks can clarify and give additional information in anonymous AskMe questions.

Also, more ways to view favorites. By user, by date, in nifty charts, etc.

Also, a way to play Scrabble over the internet.
posted by box at 9:32 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


New users (date of reg? number of comments?) are restricted.... as is number of times that any user can use IMG tag in [given period] (days, weeks?). If you post NSFW or above a certain file size, you get one warning. On second violation, you lose IMG privs forever, which will be known as the imghammer.

that sounds like a coding nightmare.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:38 AM on October 5, 2008


really incredibly square when it comes to sex

In thinking this over, I suppose it's a combination of the site largely being viewed at work (I'm inferring here), and therefore MeFi being default SFW - as well as the comfort level and discourse level that arises out of that. If Metafilter were predominantly a site you visited at night after a drink or two (which of course it is in some cases, albeit not the majority), the discourse might loosen up a little.

Also, if we're doing a suggestion box, it would be great to finally try & solve the super-duper size thread situation. It's become more and more common to see users adding placeholder comments which of course just make a long thread even longer.

Personally, I can't see the harm in just creating a second (or third or fourth) page for comments every time they reach 1000. Simple, and as long as you can remember which page you're reading, easy to follow.
posted by stinkycheese at 9:46 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Don't ever change MeFi. I like you just the way you are.
posted by Sailormom at 9:51 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Ad hominem attacks (someone called me a 'douche' because I thought the city offleash dogwalking park was too large) would be deleted immediately.
posted by KokuRyu at 9:53 AM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


Well, I suppose by default images would only show up as links, but if you checked a box on your profile, they would magically become inline-images.
posted by blue_beetle at 9:54 AM on October 5, 2008


really incredibly square when it comes to sex

rule34.metafilter.com
posted by lukemeister at 10:05 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


All grudges currently being held would be immediately and totally forgotten, and everyone would truly get a brand new day.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 10:19 AM on October 5, 2008 [3 favorites]


All grudges currently being held would be immediately and totally forgotten, and everyone would truly get a brand new day.

I FORGIVE YOU LANGUAGEHAT!
posted by Navelgazer at 10:24 AM on October 5, 2008


Also, this place is really incredibly square when it comes to sex. Sorry, but it is.

Really? Can you explain that better or cite examples? Reading between the lines, it always like people had certain views or practices that they didn't weren't going to reveal in this public forum.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:28 AM on October 5, 2008


Ban all of the moderator suck-ups.
posted by Zambrano at 10:35 AM on October 5, 2008


- a really robust search/browse toolset that puts all other web searches to shame
- everyone gets five images per year to use as they see fit
- user-customizeable CSS
- follow-up filter feature in AskMe
- a way to easily link to previous discussions on the exact same topic in MeTa [not for deletion purposes but just "hey this is what the discussion looked like last time we talked about this, fyi]
- a way to zap people with electricity in MetaTalk
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 10:41 AM on October 5, 2008 [7 favorites]


1. Revived TravelFilter in some simpler form

2. Ability to save draft FPPs...I brought this up before and it was not embraced - people recommended using notepad instead, etc. But that doesn't meet the need I was after, because I work on 3 different computers in the course of most weekdays and don't tote all my bookmarks and documents around on each. There are several links for undeveloped FPPs on topics in my bookmarks file, and they never get posted because I'd need a couple hours uninterrupted to work on the post, and that happens rarely. If I could only chuck them into a saved draft along with some notes, I could put the post together piecemeal when I've got a few minutes.
posted by Miko at 10:43 AM on October 5, 2008


All grudges currently being held would be immediately and totally forgotten, and everyone would truly get a brand new day.

I would totally support this, if it had been put forward by any MeFite other than the one who did.
*Glares, updates Enemies List*
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:44 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm with iamkimiam - I'd also like to have a way of marking or noting posts/comments that isn't called "favorite" - maybe just "noted" or "bookmarked"?

and Bookfilter would be great

(btw, thanks Navelgazer for that totally awesome piece of graffitti - totally made my day)
posted by jammy at 10:46 AM on October 5, 2008


Ban all of the moderator suck-ups.
posted by Zambrano


Care to back that up with examples, or are you this week's self-appointed and edgy contrarian who needs to disparage other folks in an attempt to garner attention you couldn't get by being a positive contributor to the site?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:46 AM on October 5, 2008 [8 favorites]


a way to zap people with electricity in MetaTalk

First offenders get a warning.
posted by lukemeister at 10:57 AM on October 5, 2008


Also, this place is really incredibly square when it comes to sex. Sorry, but it is.


I imagine it would be more comfortable rounded out a bit.

But have you considered having sex with actual people, instead?
posted by jamjam at 10:57 AM on October 5, 2008


Miko, I'm feeling your pain (use about 4 different computers throughout a regular day) and use a combination of Google Docs and Delicious to be able write posts and save bookmarks from anywhere. The benefit is that it's not limited to Mefi, so other stuff gets done too, usually.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:58 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I would dearly like the ability to edit my comment within - say 5 minutes - after posting. Even Live Previewing doesn't catch all my typos.
posted by reflecked at 11:04 AM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


Hypothetical Ask Me category.
posted by John Kenneth Fisher at 11:05 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter Compilation Album Volume 2.
posted by Smart Dalek at 11:06 AM on October 5, 2008


User event seems to live on Statue of Liberty Island in New York Harbor. Would he be willing to host MetaFilter's 10 year anniversary celebration? Should Mefites living outside the United States be forced to celebrate on Ellis Island?
posted by Cranberry at 11:08 AM on October 5, 2008


I wouldn't mind a chatFilter.
posted by localhuman at 11:11 AM on October 5, 2008 [3 favorites]


I wish people would be less bitchy. But I know that will never happen.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 11:12 AM on October 5, 2008


The ability to edit posts and comments would be nice (maybe with a time limit or severe repercussions for those who abuse it?). And also a page that listed all the links you have posted in fpps and threads -- for some reason about half of my links don't show up when I view "recent comments". And better search.
posted by vronsky at 11:23 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


ClaudiaCenter: I wish people would be less bitchy. But I know that will never happen.

The snarkiness of MetaFilter came up at the latest Providence meet-up and the consensus was that it wasn't as crazisnarktacular as it used to be. I blame/credit the banhammerifiction of the img tag.
posted by Kattullus at 11:26 AM on October 5, 2008


If I could only chuck them into a saved draft along with some notes, I could put the post together piecemeal when I've got a few minutes.

You might consider using gmail for this, I sometimes make drafts of whateverthehell there. Pretty simple. I don't mean to be all "here's a workaround for something we're not likely to build" but it's a decent option.

I would dearly like the ability to edit my comment within - say 5 minutes - after posting.

That is actually in the hopper.

Also, this place is really incredibly square when it comes to sex. Sorry, but it is.

I too am curious what you mean by this. I just figure it's one topic are that people have a wide range of opinions on as opposed to a more binary [yes declaw, no declaw] set. So, all sex questions in AskMe wind up with a fairly broad range of responses, some of which are, yes, square. But, compared to other non-sex-themed nerd boards, I think it's not that restricted. Then again I'm from New England.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 11:27 AM on October 5, 2008


The green is good for sex, yes. Lots of good information and links, and very direct non-blushing responses. I just find that almost any time there's a sex-related post in the blue, you get:

1. some obvious jokes
2. maybe one person coming in to give an 'alternative' POV, and then, depending on how that person framed their comments
3. comments critical of 2

Now that I've written that out, it seems like that could be any subject.

Anyways, my original comment came off kind of accusatory, for which I apologize. I just love the conversation here, and generally feel it's a very intelligent, sophisticated group - except when sexual stuff comes up, esp. non-vanilla stuff. I don't really want to go hunting for choice examples, sorry, that's just my feeling after years of being here. There are many posts I've considered doing here, but which I figured would go over like a lead condom (*rimshot*).

Again, the fact that people feel their bosses are seeing everything they post may have a lot to do with it.
posted by stinkycheese at 11:42 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Fundamental issue: The number of people willing to respond to sex questions is much lower than the number of people who could answer them.
posted by smackfu at 11:52 AM on October 5, 2008


I too, really do find this place tending toward a den of sexual prudery, inconsistent with the general tenor of the site. On the one hand, I am biased since my scale is calibrated by things like people making internet porn in my apartment (you may be fapping to a jpg of a naked girl on my kitchen counter EVEN AS WE SPEAK) or meeting a husband & wife and within a few hours of knowing them the guy says "Just so you know, whatever you and (wife) do is fine as long as you wear a condom." On the other hand, you're all a bunch of prudes.
posted by Sockpuppet For Naughty Things at 11:54 AM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I love called a prude by someone who needs another account to tell everyone how cool and blase they are about sexay things since their regular account has their real name in it.

My suggestion: Shoot all the sockpuppets, they confuse and irritate me.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:06 PM on October 5, 2008 [4 favorites]


Make it harder to accidentally flag as "duplicate" when you meant to flag as "fantastic," or alternately make it possible to unflag something.
posted by zippy at 12:08 PM on October 5, 2008


A pre-post breathalyser.
posted by Sparx at 12:09 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Fundamental issue: The number of people willing to respond to sex questions is much lower than the number of people who could answer them.

Anonymous responding option?
posted by stinkycheese at 12:11 PM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


Well, it would be a jackass move to leak the identity of my internet pornstar ex-roommate or my open-marriage friends, which someone could easily do from my real account, so I went anonymous.
posted by Sockpuppet For Naughty Things at 12:12 PM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


(ps I can't favourite a comment using Chrome)
posted by chuckdarwin at 12:12 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I too, really do find this place tending toward a den of sexual prudery, inconsistent with the general tenor of the site.

Really? It seems Mefi, as a group, is ok with just about anything as long as all parties know what's going on. But it has close to zero tolerance for lying, cheating or manipulating or general stupidity.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:14 PM on October 5, 2008


I too, really do find this place tending toward a den of sexual prudery

See I really feel that there's prudery which is "I like things pretty vanilla and if you don't you're some sort of deviant/perv/bad person" but then there's the same sort of intolerance which is "I like things kinky and if you don't you're just repressed/prudish/uptight" Neither one is really very useful.

I understand that there is sort of a reaction built in because people in the kink community feel that there has been a lot of general negative energy directed their way so there's a "proud to pony play!" aspect to some of that, but calling people prudes who don't share your own predilections is as good a way to kick off that sort of "I like things pretty vanilla and if you harass me about it..." back and forth.

If you admit your own scale is calibrated way off to one side, I don't really see how it's at all helpful to denigrate anyone who falls to the other side of your normalmeter as opposed to just saying your bit and figuring you can help the site be a little more open/kink-friendly/whatever.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 12:19 PM on October 5, 2008 [7 favorites]


calling people prudes who don't share your own predilections

Everybody wants to be the only gay in the ville-aaj. Get used to it!
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:25 PM on October 5, 2008


I'd like to see some line drawn between "Metatalk -- The place where we discuss issues about the site" and "Metatalk -- The place where it's okay to be a dick." I can see where having a place to let off steam might be a good idea, but I'm not convinced that every discussion about the hows and whys of the site needs to be that place.
posted by lore at 12:29 PM on October 5, 2008 [3 favorites]


"I like things kinky and if you don't you're just repressed/prudish/uptight"

You went a different direction than I was. I myself am personally rather unkinky and don't care how kinky or not people are.

The crap I don't like is things like this thread, where before some people do come in with sensible answers we learn that porn stars are all desperate drug addicts with no self esteem. I'll denigrate that.
posted by Sockpuppet For Naughty Things at 12:32 PM on October 5, 2008


An almost heartbreaking amount of old posts feature dead links, however.

I'd like the ability to go back and fix those dead links in my own posts - something that is often possible if the page just got moved or if there is an alternate source.
posted by madamjujujive at 12:40 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I think that first and foremost, I'd like to have my old username back.
posted by [NOT HERMITOSIS-IST] at 12:40 PM on October 5, 2008


Brandon Blatcher writes "that sounds like a coding nightmare."

In the database:
create table warnings (user_id, warning_level);

create view img_denied as
select id from user where user_joined > dateadd( week, -2, Now() )
union select user_id from warnings where warning_level >= 2;

In the commenting code:

String parsed_comment = parse_comment_except_img_tags( raw_comment );

if( db_row_count("select * from img_denied where id = " + commenter_id ) > 0 )
parsed_comment = convert_image_tag_to_link( parsed_comment );
posted by orthogonality at 12:43 PM on October 5, 2008


More hypotheticals in AskMe.

Hypothetical Ask Me category.

I wouldn't mind a chatFilter.


Why aren't you people over at Cortex's Big Big Question?
posted by The Whelk at 12:44 PM on October 5, 2008


(ps I can't favourite a comment using Chrome)

chuckdarwin,
I just favorited your comment using Chrome :-)
posted by lukemeister at 12:44 PM on October 5, 2008


I FORGIVE YOU LANGUAGEHAT!

Aww... gee, thanks! I'm really touched, but I'm afraid it may be too late to call off the hit squad I sent out last night. I'll try, honest, but if a UPS truck pulls up outside and you hear a knock on the door later this afternoon? Don't answer it.
posted by languagehat at 12:45 PM on October 5, 2008


Bring back the IMG tag
posted by ninjew at 12:47 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Why aren't you people over at Cortex's Big Big Question?

Without the Mattprimatur of being listed on top of the main page, it's too scary to go there.
posted by lukemeister at 12:53 PM on October 5, 2008


Without the Mattprimatur of being listed on top of the main page, it's too scary to go there.

While it might be scary, or even dangerous, to identify as "Bi-siteual", the rewards of an open mind outweigh the cost.
posted by The Whelk at 12:58 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


To be respectful to the needs of all, BBQ needs a vegetarian alternative.
posted by lukemeister at 1:08 PM on October 5, 2008


Big Big Quinoa?
posted by The Whelk at 1:16 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


everyone gets five images per year to use as they see fit

And then on January 2nd, we'd have 17 metatalk threads from people whining and asking for more images.
posted by chrisamiller at 1:18 PM on October 5, 2008


If chrisamiller doesn't want to use his images, and I used up all mine, can I get his MeFiPictoCredits transferred to my account?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 1:31 PM on October 5, 2008


"I think that first and foremost, I'd like to have my old username back.
posted by [NOT HERMITOSIS-IST] at 12:40 PM"

Could the Wizards of OZ Corvallis and McMinnville implement this? Surely Hermitosis has learned the folly of tempting Mefites to favorite him/her.
posted by Cranberry at 1:31 PM on October 5, 2008


Surely Hermitosis has learned the folly of tempting Mefites to favorite him/her.

No, kids need to learn boundaries and consequences, let him be an example to the others!
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 1:36 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I think that first and foremost, I'd like to have my old username back.

If you favorite this comment 500 times, I'll agree with that request.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:41 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I would love limited image use. 5 imgs per year, as jessamyn suggested, sounds great, but chuckdarwin's idea -- one day a year -- also sounds nice.

If I had my druthers, one thread per month would randomly selected by the mods to be the image-friendly thread, with the caveat that it has to be okayed by the OP before commencing. It'll be nuts, a fucking holiday, carnivale, a huge messy explosion of joy and annoyance confined to one tiny portion of the site.

A midi version of the song Everybody Hurts by REM is embedded into the "Do you want to delete your account?" page.

please please please please please
posted by Greg Nog at 1:46 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


[NOT HERMITOSIS-IST], let's talk....
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 1:47 PM on October 5, 2008


Wait! Wait...

[NOT-HERMITOSIS-IST], if you wait just another month, until the end of election-filter, the [NOT-HERMITOSIS-IST] era could be officially book-ended with the influx of new MeFites in early 2008 and the dawning of a new era of intersting posts on the Blue in the second week of November. You could be remembered for all time! Think about what you're doing, man!
posted by Navelgazer at 2:01 PM on October 5, 2008


Um, I think we can all agree that there should be pictures of puppies. Cute, cute puppies.
posted by trip and a half at 2:05 PM on October 5, 2008


If I could change one thing, it would be to make the default home page have a more professional white background so my doofus hipster friends don't think I'm enjoying something neat in an unironic manner.
posted by Justinian at 2:06 PM on October 5, 2008


Yes!:
• Getting together more & in different ways to better foster the idea of community (Afroblanco)
• Bookfilter...I see that it started but didn't last. Maybe we can ping the person who started it before and request a re-start? (Kattullus)
• MeFi Suggestion Box (flapjax at midnite)
• Deletions represented in some way - maybe a link in the sidebar to a subpage that collects deletions the way clicking one's own favourites divides them into posts & comments? (adipocere)
• Dropped grudges - on my part, I have no grudges, but I took a moment to drop my pre-conceived notions and half-ground axes (ThePinkSuperhero)
• Editing comments & posts w/in 10min of posting - glad it's in the hopper! (reflecked)
• Anonymous respond option (stinkycheese)
• Ability to unflag (zippy)

Meh:
Can't get behind IMG tags, as the reason they're excluded is security reasons. Also, including a link to an image is easy and allows the user make the choice whether or not they want to see the image. You can choose to not read text...images are processed too immediately and there's no such thing as "unseeing" something...

...but Greg Nog's vision is compelling, and that actually sounds cool.
posted by batmonkey at 2:13 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


On a more serious note, I am a huge non-fan of an anonymous respond option. I'm not actually a big fan of anonymous questions in the first place. You need to ask an anonymous question, shell out $5 and make a sock puppet. Anonymous responses are just asking for trouble. You can always mail Jessamyn or somebody if your special snowflake answer just has to be anonymous.

In fact, if I could change one thing about the site it would be the complete elimination of anonymous questions. Seriously, they are a big net negative and, as I said, if you just can't bring yourself to ask a question with your regular username you can get a sock pocket for the bargain low low price of $5.
posted by Justinian at 2:21 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


1) Eschew sockpuppetry

2) More bannination and general disciplining of acting-out users
posted by jtron at 2:29 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


batmonkey hates ClassicFilter. It is to weep.
posted by cgc373 at 2:32 PM on October 5, 2008


No politics--it poisons the site.

No mystery links. Describe your content in your post.
posted by LarryC at 2:38 PM on October 5, 2008


If I could change one thing, it would be to make the default home page have a more professional white background

Do you not know about the simple style sheet? It does this. I use it. It's great.

Anyway, a place to suggest site changes, features or improvements, without all the stuff that a MeTa thread entails.

This is the contact form, pretty much. As much as we're open to suggestions, the "vote for improvements" angle isn't really a way we're likely to go; MeTa already serves as a good "what do you think?" referendum area otherwise.

imghammer

This isn't a coding nightmare, as ortho points out, it's an admin nightmare. Any new rule or policy that gets implemented here basically needs to be explicable to 35,000 people in a way that seems a) necessary, b) fair and c) doesn't have that "this is why you can't have nice things" taint to it. Anything more confusing than, say, time limits for how often you can post or what constitutes a bannable offense is really asking for trouble and we already spend a great deal of time answering questions that are in the FAQ and explaining why Y or Z policy applies in A or B situation.

I know people here aren't asking for my opinion particularly, just that some of these suggestions have been considered and dismissed, some we're still considering and some are in "not going to happen" territory and I figured people would like to know which were which in some cases.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:39 PM on October 5, 2008


Aww, cgc373, beyond my opinion not mattering one whit...I don't hate classicfilter - it looks like it exists, is all :D

That wasn't the only thing I left out, either: I'm also anti-sockpuppetry. Membership bloat by fake accounts is weirdly, neurotically irritating to me.
posted by batmonkey at 2:39 PM on October 5, 2008


Languagehat, the only dude to show up at my door this afternoon was dressed like an Obama canvasser with a Warner button. Maybe your team saw your warning and tried to improvise? Anyway, he was pretty stringy, and I was on my guard anyway, so...

Can you get your deposit back, is I guess what I'm asking? Or did you just put something in escrow?
posted by Navelgazer at 2:40 PM on October 5, 2008


Less videos. If I want to leave all text behind, I can go straight to YouTube or 236.com.

Seconding no mystery links.
posted by lukemeister at 2:41 PM on October 5, 2008


Every time chrisamiller flags one of my stupid comments, I get 10,000 volts to the groin. Mmm.
posted by turgid dahlia at 2:45 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I've always seen mystery links as a matter of stylistic preference depending on how one is building their post. You can always tell beforehand if it's going to be youtube, and if you really want context, you can always check the comments first.
posted by Navelgazer at 2:46 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


More snacks. And an open bar where you don't charge for non-alcoholic drinks, like the last wedding I attended. Could have had a free Jack and Coke, but not a free Coke. What's up with that?

I'm glad there are some political discussions here, because I've burned out discussing it anywhere else, but I can see why some people don't like it. It is pretty orthodox.
posted by krinklyfig at 2:49 PM on October 5, 2008


I do what Navelgazer does, as far as mystery links go.

That said, I'll be happy when YouTube shows video name in the video URL and/or people get tired of what often comes off as a contrivance regardless of intent or creativity on the part of the poster.
posted by batmonkey at 2:55 PM on October 5, 2008


some of these suggestions have been considered and dismissed, some we're still considering and some are in "not going to happen" territory and I figured people would like to know which were which in some cases.

Very much so. Thanks, jessamyn.
posted by amyms at 2:59 PM on October 5, 2008


SLYT posts require a note from parent or gaurdian.
posted by lee at 3:02 PM on October 5, 2008


(duh, guardian)
posted by lee at 3:03 PM on October 5, 2008


While we're wishing, I wish the first few commenters of each thread would stop trying so hard to seem unimpressed and/or get the first joke in. It's barely one step above going in and saying "FIRST!" I like Metafilter, but don't read it regularly because everyone seems more interested in griping about the subject or (lack of) depth of content.
posted by CwgrlUp at 3:12 PM on October 5, 2008 [3 favorites]


SLYT posts require a note from a gourd.
posted by CitizenD at 3:26 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


FIRST!!!
posted by josher71 at 3:27 PM on October 5, 2008


jessamyn: This is the contact form, pretty much.

Speaking of... I've sent a couple of bug reports down the Contact chute and I wonder if anything was ever done on them. A "bugs zapped" page somewhere would be interesting.
posted by Kattullus at 3:27 PM on October 5, 2008


More Guru Dev, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, and Raja Raam updates. Cortex used to keep a special spot in the sidebar for that, but I guess it is tough to keep so many plates spinning at once. So no hard feelings, cortex, I guess perfect happiness, eternal peace, and infinite invincibility isn't really a top priority around here and that's OK.
posted by Meatbomb at 3:27 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


No inside jokes. Never seeing the words "fish" and "pants" in the same sentence again unless it's referring to that Tom Waits video. No cute abbreviations like "fpp" unless absolutely necessary.

It's not that I don't think these things are clever or funny (although 99% percent of the time they're not), it's that it's alienating to new users and frankly makes me a bit embarrassed to show the site to friends who don't know about it yet.

I'm as big a nerd as anyone, I spent a good 30 minutes at work Friday quoting "holy grail" with my boss. It's just that I think the cool thing about metafilter is being able to have a real, intelligent conversation about things in the real world, or ask a question or see a link that genuinely improves my life or teaches me something I didn't know before. 99% of the time, the site is great at that. It's when it degenerates to a bunch of tired in-jokes that it starts to feel a bit cliquey and embarrassing and "why bother, it's just a couple of people goofing off on the internet."
posted by drjimmy11 at 3:33 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Sooo....not a huge fan of mudkips, eh, jimmy?
posted by turgid dahlia at 3:39 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


Actually Meatbomb's perfect happiness discussion reminded me of an older idea. I change my wish to the establishment of the Metafilter utopian commune. I'm not too picky about the specific model, anarcho-syndicalist or other, as long as it works, if that makes it easier. Still working on that universal unconditional love in my heart, though - I'm not convinced such a trait is really even a good thing to have.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 3:39 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


In the same spirit, anyone who cites a low usernumber as some kind of authority, or chides someone with a high usernumber for speaking out of turn, should be removed from the site.

People who use the term "newb" should be beaten about the breast, chest and head.
posted by drjimmy11 at 3:42 PM on October 5, 2008


Sooo....not a huge fan of mudkips, eh, jimmy?

I don't know what that is. Possibly because I am a $5 35k newb?

yes, I realize it's a most likely a term you made up as parody. if so, bravo to you. If the yahoo messenger "clapping" emoticon was available here, I would use it.
posted by drjimmy11 at 3:44 PM on October 5, 2008


I would dearly like the ability to edit my comment within - say 5 minutes - after posting. Even Live Previewing doesn't catch all my typos.

This. I'm the poster child for why this is necessary.
posted by pjern at 3:44 PM on October 5, 2008


"Also, this place is really incredibly square when it comes to sex. Sorry, but it is."

Nah. It's just that those of us who are really awesome about sex don't really waste time reading about other people's inadequacies and insecurities.
posted by Eideteker at 3:45 PM on October 5, 2008


on further research it seems to be something from 4chan. "Lol" @ myself.
posted by drjimmy11 at 3:46 PM on October 5, 2008


No cute abbreviations like "fpp"

Yeah, fpping is too easily confused with fapping.

*ties disparate strands of this thread in a bow*
posted by lukemeister at 3:56 PM on October 5, 2008


Aww jeez. This is like the time I was at that thing, with those people, and I said some words, and the place went stone quiet, until a baby started crying so hard that it choked.
posted by turgid dahlia at 4:03 PM on October 5, 2008


In the same spirit, anyone who cites a low usernumber as some kind of authority, or chides someone with a high usernumber for speaking out of turn, should be removed from the site.

If you were a 14K'er, you'd know better than to make a suggestion like that.

Personal to Navelgazer: No problem, I paid them in counterfeit money anyway.
posted by languagehat at 4:05 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


What *is* the highest user number?
posted by lukemeister at 4:16 PM on October 5, 2008


65025
posted by stavrogin at 4:33 PM on October 5, 2008


It's just that those of us who are really awesome about sex don't really waste time reading about other people's inadequacies and insecurities.

Because posts about sex must concern either people's inadequacies or their insecurities? Wow, thanks for making my point for me.

And "really awesome about sex"? Really?
posted by stinkycheese at 4:36 PM on October 5, 2008


methinks Eideteker is being a silly-billy.
posted by turgid dahlia at 4:37 PM on October 5, 2008


Actually, mine is higher than that stavrogin. 73268.
posted by turgid dahlia at 4:38 PM on October 5, 2008


oh, I just typed in numbers until I got an error message.
posted by stavrogin at 4:39 PM on October 5, 2008


Coincidentally, that's how I have sex.
posted by turgid dahlia at 4:40 PM on October 5, 2008 [3 favorites]


What *is* the highest user number?

Georg Cantor, an important dead mathematician, conceived of an Absolute Infinite number which he equated with god.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 4:40 PM on October 5, 2008


14K'ers are sex. Whenever a 14K'er makes a comment, God has an orgasm. And therefore, MetaFilter is chock-full of sex, day in day out.
posted by soundofsuburbia at 4:42 PM on October 5, 2008


I'll be happy when YouTube shows video name in the video URL and/or people get tired of what often comes off as a contrivance regardless of intent or creativity on the part of the poster.

You want the YouTube Title Adder. Never be rickrolled again.
posted by gleuschk at 4:47 PM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


Actually, mine is higher than that stavrogin. 73268.

No wonder you're turgid!
posted by lukemeister at 4:55 PM on October 5, 2008


meh.
posted by stinkycheese at 5:01 PM on October 5, 2008


gleueschk: ooh. thanks! non-descriptive, seemingly strings of characters are not enticing. rickrolling hasn't hit me...i guess i've been lucky.
posted by batmonkey at 5:03 PM on October 5, 2008


seemingly RANDOM. agh.
posted by batmonkey at 5:03 PM on October 5, 2008


I know it's completely against the Metafilter way, but I'd love to be able to sort comments by number of favourites. I've got no interest in wading through some of those 200+ comment USelectionfilter or economicdisasterfilter posts once they've turned in to the usual shitfest, but there is usually a few really great stuff in there.

Even if it was limited to posts with over 100 comments.
posted by markr at 5:08 PM on October 5, 2008


Sometimes, when I'm reading a long thread that's already pretty much dead, it takes me a while to scan for comments with a lot of favorites. I'd like that streamlined.
posted by Stylus Happenstance at 5:14 PM on October 5, 2008


81756?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:18 PM on October 5, 2008


We really need an odometer on the front page that says "More than 81756 served!"

I don't know what to do about the people who abandoned the arduous signup process in the middle. Maybe we should only require 6 personal references.
posted by lukemeister at 5:39 PM on October 5, 2008


but there is usually a few really great stuff in there.

I am win proof reading.
posted by markr at 5:47 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


We really need an odometer on the front page that says "More than 81756 served!"

There used to be one. Looking at archive.org, it disappeared around mid 2005.
posted by stavrogin at 5:48 PM on October 5, 2008


But, if there was one thing you could change/modify about your Metafilter experience, what would it be?

I want the snozzberries to taste like actual snozzberries. (And for mathowie to weat a large purple top hat.)
posted by not_on_display at 6:35 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


I like the neat, nice, clean text; free of ad copy and photo debris. If the average newspaper is written at a 6th grade level; what do we have here? College? Post grad at times? A unique fraternity of wit and a collusion of arts and sciences weaved into a blog? Can this even be called a "blog" anymore?

Oil wrestling at meetups. Mando.
posted by buzzman at 6:40 PM on October 5, 2008


In the same spirit, anyone who cites a low usernumber as some kind of authority, or chides someone with a high usernumber for speaking out of turn, should be removed from the site.

I know there's no way to completely sidestep the self-defeating aspect of pointing this out, but what you're describing used to be a much bigger problem back in the day. I see genuine usernumber-related comments very rarely these days, and maybe an occasional 14ker joke (as, yes, see above). It's practically extinct compared to what it was like in the year or so after $5 signups finally opened.

I agree with you in spirit, for the record. It's just nearly non-existent as an issue these days.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:51 PM on October 5, 2008


To be respectful to the needs of all, BBQ needs a vegetarian alternative.

If the idea of grilling vegetables in BBQ sauce is one that baffles you, you're a lousy vegetarian.
posted by spaceman_spiff at 7:07 PM on October 5, 2008


cortex,

How many people have succeeded in signing up?
*eyes 4-digit user number jealously*
posted by lukemeister at 7:08 PM on October 5, 2008


81756?

Bitch, please. Folks who use AskMe don't count.
posted by Eideteker at 8:00 PM on October 5, 2008


And no, I didn't forget the word "only."

Oh snap!
posted by Eideteker at 8:03 PM on October 5, 2008


stavrogin: There used to be one. Looking at archive.org, it disappeared around mid 2005.

Holy shit! It's gone! It was here fairly recently. It can't have disappeared a very long time ago... it was here at least last year. By the by, Alex Voyd, user number 81764, was the highest numbered one I could find.
posted by Kattullus at 8:21 PM on October 5, 2008


The member counter still exists on MeFi LoFi, the place insiders go to see Deleted Threads in the wild. Currently 80791. Your mileage may vary. A lot.
posted by wendell at 8:31 PM on October 5, 2008


this place is really incredibly square when it comes to sex. Sorry, but it is.

Um, bullshit.

The answers to this recent question about reenacting abusive childhood discipline in a sexual setting are great, accepting, and decidely non-"square," and I've found that to be the case in pretty much all AskMe questions about sex. More evidence:

I want to tie up my kinky girlfriend, so I need to install a strong hook of some kind in my ceiling. Help me make sure it doesn't fall down.
Lesbian role-play ideas, bonus points for kinky.
I'm a straight guy and I have several kinks which drive me wild in bed.
I'm wondering what I could be doing to make things more interesting for my boyfriend...Guys...what strange thing has a girl done for you that left you totally impressed?

That was from two minutes of searching. We must not be reading the same site, because there's no way in hell this place is "incredibly square when it comes to sex."
posted by mediareport at 8:47 PM on October 5, 2008 [1 favorite]


prowrestling.metafilter.com
posted by jtron at 8:48 PM on October 5, 2008


because there's no way in hell this place is "incredibly square when it comes to sex."

I think this place can be incredibly square or incredibly open minded depending on the conversation. In my experience, there's enough variety of opinion here that sometimes it seems to be a roll of the dice which direction a topic will go.

If I could have any pie in the sky feature added to the site it would be debatecamp.metafilter.com. Where metafilter goes to learn to be better at some of the topics metafilter isn't good at.
posted by billyfleetwood at 10:16 PM on October 5, 2008 [2 favorites]


I find that a sprig of parsley really brightens up the whole plate of beans.
posted by graventy at 10:28 PM on October 5, 2008


1) Somehow filter out questions about locations in which I have no interest. IOW, I'm OK with seeing the posts about the city where I was born or the state where I live now, but I know nothing about Chicago or Brisbane and it seems like questions about "where should I stay? what should I eat? Anything cool I shouldn't miss" happen all the time. It kind of depresses me to read about how all these college students are traveling places I can't go right now...

2) Save my "best answers" along with my "favorites" so I can enjoy my little ego boosts later;

3) It would be really cool if we recruited people who were actually experts in say, polymer chemistry, to comment on things like shampoo composition.
posted by amtho at 10:43 PM on October 5, 2008


Bring back the IMG tag.
Bring back the IMG tag.
Bring back the IMG tag.


Oh, no. Nonononono.

I have a distinctly silly and juvenile sense of humor, poor impulse control, the entire Adobe creative suite, and I'm wicked fast. Bringing back the image tag would be like putting the town lush in charge of the bar. If you think I'm annoying now, you would want to catapult me into the sun if we had images.
posted by louche mustachio at 12:29 AM on October 6, 2008


languagehat: "If you were a 14K'er, you'd know better than to make a suggestion like that.
I miss the days when user numbers mattered. It was childish and divisive, but there were some downsides as well, I guess.

If you changed it, it wouldn't be MetaFilter. I like it just the way it is. Warts, lessions, pustules and all.
posted by dg at 1:47 AM on October 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


usernumbers actually mattered to people here? How sad is that? *rolls eyes*

I should say that this sort of shit (my number is lower than your number, so shut up) is the worst thing about the site.
posted by chuckdarwin at 2:53 AM on October 6, 2008


Bitch, please. Folks who use AskMe don't count.

THEN HOW THE FUCK DO THE CALCULATE THE TIP?!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:12 AM on October 6, 2008


MeFi LoFi shows 80808 members.
posted by lukemeister at 5:06 AM on October 6, 2008


* TotalFantasy: Construct some sort of kit that allows people to roll their own blankityblankFilter. Or provide some support for users trying to do so.

* Dontevenknowwhatimean: Be more welcoming to newcomers -- there were comments above about the cliquishness of the site. It's the flip side of community. When you figure out how to navigate between the two, please send me a message.

* "Everyone needs a hug" should be in bigger, bolder, badder font
posted by prophetsearcher at 5:16 AM on October 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Or provide some support for users trying to do so.

*phone rings*

"Metafitler tech-support, Jessamyn speaking, what do you want?"

"Yeah, WTF is up with the 4.07.92 branch?! You guys stopped including support for comment pagination, what the hell is going on over there?! I paid my 5 bucks fifteen years ago, just like everyone else and dammit, I'm not getting my monies worth. Let me speak to your supervisor!"

"Cortex has turned off his neural network while up on the space station."

"Wait, what, where's Matt?!"

"Sir, it's best if you don't use that name, this isn't a secure line."

"Oh. Well, what about IMG tag?"

"Wrong extension, transferring you to Fuck Off, Jackass department."
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:39 AM on October 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


* "Everyone needs a hug" should be in bigger, bolder, badder font

Nah, it needs something with more feeling.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:21 AM on October 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


The IMG tag and the ability to punch users in sensitive areas.
posted by Pope Guilty at 6:28 AM on October 6, 2008


mediareport: stinkycheese praised the green as good for sex discussions but said that the blue was prudish. All your examples were from the green.
posted by saucysault at 6:36 AM on October 6, 2008


"Everyone needs a hug" should be in bigger, bolder, badder font

This is an excellent idea, and I see no downside. pb, please make this happen.
posted by Meatbomb at 7:05 AM on October 6, 2008


stinkycheese praised the green as good for sex discussions

Oops, missed that. Thanks. But glad to see stinkycheese backed off the assertion a bit. Even with the juvenile jokes, occasional homophobia and casual sexism in the blue, it's still a pretty non-square place for sex stuff.
posted by mediareport at 7:41 AM on October 6, 2008


Sparx : A pre-post breathalyser.

I like this, it would be a good minimum entry requirement for drunk.metafilter.com, a new and popular subsite that has all the metafilter content, but the comments made from drunk.mefi, only show up in drunk.mefi, and wouldn't interfere with the real conversation in the threads.

I believe this would lead to much humor and revelry.

I'd also like it if we had a member-count that ignored those no-pay signups.
posted by quin at 8:42 AM on October 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


* TotalFantasy: Construct some sort of kit that allows people to roll their own blankityblankFilter. Or provide some support for users trying to do so.

Damn hell ass yes. I'd love to see a section called ExperimentalFilter, where established users could propose, create (and moderate) things like BookFilter and PoliticsFilter and TravelFilter and IMGFilter and ChatFilter and WhateverFilter. The best ones could be promoted out of ExperimentalFilter to become a regular part of the site.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:11 AM on October 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


This has been suggested before and seems simple but it didn't happen. I wish that posts that would show up on the "My Ask" page were marked somewhere on the normal AskMe front page. That way I could get the benefits of calling out certain tags as interesting, without needing to use a separate tab that doesn't list most of the questions.

Essentially, I want to highlight some posts, but not exclude the rest.
posted by smackfu at 9:17 AM on October 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


PoliticsFilter

This already exists.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:10 AM on October 6, 2008


reuse user numbers
posted by blue_beetle at 11:21 AM on October 6, 2008


I want to be able to change elpapacito's punctuation. Or something that randomly blocks Meatbomb's ability to post. I'm not picky.

Just cranky.
posted by kittyprecious at 11:22 AM on October 6, 2008


Oh, no, wait! I want hadjiboyFilter. Or maybe just hadjiboy, to myself. I don't know what it would be, exactly, apart from "awesome."
posted by kittyprecious at 11:27 AM on October 6, 2008


"Everyone needs a hug" should be in bigger, bolder, badder font

This is an excellent idea, and I see no downside. pb, please make this happen.


Also, it needs fire.
posted by owtytrof at 12:43 PM on October 6, 2008


I'd like to take Afroblanco's excellent BBS invocation to its logical conclusion- replace the T1/whatever pipe you've got coming into the server with an analog phone bank. Actually, scratch that- one line. If some else is on, you gotta wait.

If nothing else, it would severely cut down on the stupid tourrettic commenting styles many threads devolve into.
posted by mkultra at 12:57 PM on October 6, 2008


Easy enough to solve the user number dilemma: assign them at random from a pool of say, 500,000. If the user # completes registration, it's permanent, if not - back into the pool.
posted by pjern at 1:36 PM on October 6, 2008


I'd like to get rid of snarky one-liners.

The favorites system seems to reward these (and snarky/rude "ownage" in general) far more than it rewards discussion, which leads to threads in which something useful could have been said, if everyone wasn't too busy falling over each other trying to be the first one to post something short and sarcastic/clever. The snarky crap generates grudges and/or upset, which in turn generate further snark and rudeness, creating a snarkaloop from which very little content can escape.

I know at least one person who left the site because of this. Mefi used to be the kind of place where you could expect to be able to engage people in debate, and getting nothing but loads of content-free rudeness and snark in return for your efforts was unusual. Some snark, sure, and often even a lot, but nothing but? No, not usually. There was almost always someone willing to actually talk. Now the snark is well on its way to becoming my expectation, and I'm surprised when people bother to honestly engage.

I'm not asking for a total ban on snark (I'm mean myself, sometimes, especially in response to the same), but responding to somebody's extensive comment or FPP with "lol here's a lazy one-liner in which I try to make you look bad" is lame, and it's eventually going to kill the site. People won't bother to work on creating quality FPPs and comments if this is their reward.

In short: if you don't have anything nice to say, either pass on by or spend more than three seconds framing your reply. I AM SMUG LOOK AT ME LOOK AT ME EVERYBODY SEE HOW SMUGGY SMUG SMUG I CAN BE is not very useful, and while it's fun once in a while (see: "portobello") the fun gets a little old when you have to constantly swim upstream against it.
posted by vorfeed at 1:36 PM on October 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


That's what she said.
posted by blue_beetle at 1:53 PM on October 6, 2008


I know at least one person who left the site because of this.

Who?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:06 PM on October 6, 2008


LOL dream on vorfeed amirite?
posted by Meatbomb at 2:09 PM on October 6, 2008


I'm not asking for a total ban on snark (I'm mean myself, sometimes, especially in response to the same), but responding to somebody's extensive comment or FPP with "lol here's a lazy one-liner in which I try to make you look bad" is lame, and it's eventually going to kill the site.

I'm asking in total sincerity: if you feel that this particular behavior is going to kill the site, then why do you engage in it?
posted by pineapple at 2:20 PM on October 6, 2008


Okay, I know what feature I want. It's a feature that we used to have, and that was taken away from us with little warning or explanation.

amberglow.
posted by Pope Guilty at 2:22 PM on October 6, 2008 [4 favorites]


I'm not asking for a total ban on snark (I'm mean myself, sometimes, especially in response to the same), but responding to somebody's extensive comment or FPP with "lol here's a lazy one-liner in which I try to make you look bad" is lame, and it's eventually going to kill the site. People won't bother to work on creating quality FPPs and comments if this is their reward.

I hate it too. So, what I do is never engage in it (there are a few MeTa exceptions that I'm sure someone can drag out and waggle in my face, but they're rare) even if someone's being a total doorknob about something.

I'm not totally sure this pacifist-ish path is the way I want to move forward with my activism in the rest of my life, but on a website that I care about, where the worst that happens is that someone sits back at their keyboard and says "I really showed HER!" I think it's better strategy to go for a walk. It's sort of easy for me to say since I don't have to worry too much about status here, I guess, but really does anyone? We'll pull snarkish "meh" comments that appear early on in MeFi threads when we see them because I agree with you, it's just sort of non-useful and anti-community unless you want to be a community of snarky assholes.

Then again when I was growing up, this sort of thing was on Sesame Street so my opinion may be suspect.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:44 PM on October 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


A pony.
posted by samsara at 3:43 PM on October 6, 2008


I hate it too. So, what I do is never engage in it (there are a few MeTa exceptions that I'm sure someone can drag out and waggle in my face, but they're rare) even if someone's being a total doorknob about something.

I was all ready to jump on this and link to a pile of snarky thread deletion reasons, but after browing through several pages of deleted thread, it looks like the thread deletion reasons have gotten a lot less sarcastic lately, which I'm quite glad to see.
posted by gsteff at 3:45 PM on October 6, 2008


I'd like to get rid of snarky one-liners.

Amen brother, because if there's something a thread like this one needs, it's intelligent, reasoned debate. Fucking thing went right down the tubes.

The milking tubes, that is!
posted by turgid dahlia at 3:54 PM on October 6, 2008


[i fixed my own typo and made an fpp about littering as penance]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 4:08 PM on October 6, 2008


I don't mind the snark, as long as it's reasonably humorous or on-topic-ish.

The stuff I don't like is the

"this sucks"
"I hate this"
"This is vaguely a double from six years ago"
"This is so going to be deleted"
"Someone said deleted? Here's something that will guarantee that"
"I've seen this somewhere else"

stuff that often happens in the first few comments and which often dooms an otherwise OK post.
posted by maxwelton at 4:37 PM on October 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


"Also, the ability to edit your own comments, maybe limited to 5 or 10 minutes after posting. Live Preview is great, but I still miss some boo-boos. (Although, some of the "Oops!" errata are quite amusing ... might be a shame to lose those.)"

"[i fixed my own typo and made an fpp about littering as penance]"

Sure, rub it in our face. ;)

I was also going to recommend:
- Somehow denote mods in posts. Make their signature bold, or put a little red 'bar' next to them (like the whitish-gray bar when an OP responds on Ask MeFi). The downside is that this would keep the mods from participating normally, but the upside is that it would be easy to tell what was an 'official' comment and what wasn't. (Maybe give mods the option of flagging their comment as a moderator action?)

- 95% of people here are really nice, and I feel like it's a great, tight community. 5% of people here aren't nice, and make me feel like I'm on any old website.

- It's very OCD, and would probably massively complicate anonymous questions being "anonymous," but it drives me crazy to think of just how many disposable accounts have been created just to allow possible one-time questions. How about a MeFi-hosted forwarder, for a limited period of time (maybe 7 days)? While the MeFi mods would be able to link an anonymous e-mail (and thus a thread) to a real address, I assume that it's already possible to see who is anonymously asking a question. (And even if it's not displayed, it could probably be ascertained by examining logfiles?) But for your questions that aren't, "Help, a MeFi admin is stalking me," I think it would be good enough?

- Bonus: in anonymous threads, allow an "Anonymous reply" option, cutting down the need for the above. The anonymous comments could still be linked to an account (to guard against abuse), but that info wouldn't be visible to users. This could also allow follow-ups by anonymous question-askers.
posted by fogster at 4:43 PM on October 6, 2008


"...it's a great, tight community."

That was supposed to say "tight-knit," not be decade-old slang. But whatev, homie.
posted by fogster at 4:45 PM on October 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


fogster, this shit is tight.

Somehow denote mods in posts.

We've sort of vaguely talked about this before, I think. When it comes down to it, we will kind of mark up our own posts if we're worried that it won't be clear that Something Administrative is being said, by

[tossing out a comment in small text and brackets]

...which seems to work fairly well most of the time. It's unusual enough to stand out at a glance, and coupled with a description of administrative action taken and an imperative to do or not do something is likely decodable by new people most of the time too.

That said, there's a script that provides that functionality, too. Mondo Meta, maybe? So there's at least an opt-in possibility for folks that want it and can get away with Firefox or Opera or whatever.
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:12 PM on October 6, 2008


Who? [left the site]

eparchos. He's a friend of mine IRL, but he didn't stay at mefi for long precisely because of this issue.

I'm asking in total sincerity: if you feel that this particular behavior is going to kill the site, then why do you engage in it?

I think we're talking about two different things. I'm not calling for a total ban on snark because I don't think snark is the problem. A lack of content is. You can be funny or mean and make a solid contribution to an argument or discussion at the same time; in fact, this used to be a hallmark of this site. The problem is that many mefites aren't bothering with the argument and discussion part anymore.

At any rate, I'm occasionally snarky because:
a) I'm not perfect, so when people are snarky, sometimes I get sick of it and strike back.
b) sometimes (particularly in the "funny or crazy links and videos" category) a silly one-liner is an entirely appropriate response. Like I said above: see "portobello", or, say, the "nutty lady in a cow costume" thread turgid dahlia linked to. Context matters. I'm not trying to spoil anyone's fun, provided it is actually fun-time.
c) there's a big difference between "your argument: it sucks, *insert joke* amirite?" OK HIT POST! and "your argument: it sucks, and here's my in-depth argument why." IMHO, the problem here isn't a failure to be serious and nicey-nice 100% of the time, it's a failure to put any content in with the funny and/or mean stuff. A solid, snarky-but-meaty response to someone's post or FPP is useful, and leaves room for other people to post useful responses in kind; one or two lines of snark usually isn't, and doesn't, especially when it comes as a glib response to something someone really spent some time on. Too many people seem to have graduated from the "whateva' whateva' I do what I wan'!" school of debate, and that kills discussion like nothing else.

Also, I really do try not to do this. Most of my comments are pretty long, I try to keep the mean ones to a minimum (though I suspect you can look through my comments and pretty much watch the inexorable snarktide as it erodes my patience over the last six months or so), and even the mean ones are almost always backed up by argument.

eh, who knows: maybe it's just the election. But I was around for the last one, and I don't remember the one-liners being this bad.
posted by vorfeed at 5:40 PM on October 6, 2008


Somehow denote mods in posts.

xeyes, with different faces for each moderator, would make us think twice before going snarktastic.
posted by lukemeister at 5:46 PM on October 6, 2008


FEAR THE EYES OF MATHOWIE
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:52 PM on October 6, 2008 [2 favorites]


i'm so sorry god i'm so sorry i'll never do it again
posted by lukemeister at 5:56 PM on October 6, 2008


That said, there's a script that provides that functionality, too. Mondo Meta, maybe?

You certainly could tag or highlight admins with Mondo Meta, and I do, but I think you're thinking of MeFi Navigator which has built-in admin tagging.
posted by mdevore at 5:58 PM on October 6, 2008


MeFi Navigator is awesome, as is Mefiquote (for different reasons), but you have to be careful about using them together if you are quoting an admin or the poster, because you end up quoting jessamynAdmin and nobody understands what you are on about.
posted by dg at 6:20 PM on October 6, 2008


FEAR THE EYES OF MATHOWIE

I have a painting like that in my foyer. Isn't it creepy?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 6:32 PM on October 6, 2008


Miko writes "Ability to save draft FPPs...I brought this up before and it was not embraced - people recommended using notepad instead, etc. But that doesn't meet the need I was after, because I work on 3 different computers in the course of most weekdays and don't tote all my bookmarks and documents around on each. There are several links for undeveloped FPPs on topics in my bookmarks file, and they never get posted because I'd need a couple hours uninterrupted to work on the post, and that happens rarely. If I could only chuck them into a saved draft along with some notes, I could put the post together piecemeal when I've got a few minutes."

What would be the drawback of just keeping a draft email message to yourself in the web based email of your choice to compose this kind of post?
posted by Mitheral at 7:12 PM on October 6, 2008


bacon-flavored posts.
posted by misha at 7:18 PM on October 6, 2008


There's no drawback, Mitheral. I love how everyone's full of solutions. Obviously, there are many ways to solve this problem; but there's a directness and elegance to only having to be on a single website, with no other applications running, to access the posts that are under construction. I get that people have developed solutions and I get that people don't want it. But it's like saying "Why not just use your own web email if you want to get email from MeFites?" "Why not just post your project online and get your friends to look at it if you want people to see your Project?" "Why not just look for jobs on jobs websites?"

This is where the post will eventually go, and it would be really nice to keep all the loose bits in this one place. It's not like I don't know other ways to do this - it would just be nice.
posted by Miko at 7:20 PM on October 6, 2008


What's interesting is that I so constantly have my gmail window open that I don't really think of it as another application. Gmail is the thing on the far left tab of my browser, always and ever, like some built-in widget.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:27 PM on October 6, 2008


But then, why don't you just use it for email rather than have such a thing as MeMail?
posted by Miko at 7:45 PM on October 6, 2008


I do, mostly. Mefimail exchanges are almost always initiated by other people; I send one unbidden maybe once or twice a month.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:00 PM on October 6, 2008


Ah, a desire for an integrated approach. I can see that. Though I'd imagine any MeFi stored editor would be as half assed as MeFiMail.

Miko writes "But then, why don't you just use it for email rather than have such a thing as MeMail"

The only advantage, IMO, to MeFiMail is it has a much higher uptake than email addresses on Metafilter because of it's opt out rather than opt in nature.
posted by Mitheral at 8:10 PM on October 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


as half assed as MeFiMail

You misspelled "artfully minimal".
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:22 PM on October 6, 2008 [3 favorites]


Well, so far this thread has been good about implementing the first half of my urgent suggestion, but the second part still needs addressing. Seriously, people, it's only a matter of time before Navelgazer's raw sexuality and sensual musque destroys us all.

We need a solution now!

(also, clearly, drunk.metafilter would be an excellent subsite.)
posted by Navelgazer at 8:51 PM on October 6, 2008


keepyour40illjusthaveanearlgreytea.metafilter.com
posted by lukemeister at 8:59 PM on October 6, 2008 [1 favorite]


Never.
Ever.
Ever.
Ever.
Ever.
Ever.
Ever.
Ever.
EVER.
E-V-E-R.
Even CONSIDER.
Disemvowelling.
posted by WCityMike at 10:20 PM on October 6, 2008


Well, cortex is squarely against it. He even wanted to make an emvowelator.
posted by Kattullus at 10:47 PM on October 6, 2008


I'd like to get rid of snarky one-liners.

You and what army?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:46 PM on October 6, 2008


Oh shit, jessamyn.

Note to self: Read the all the comments following the one you're responding to before responding.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:49 PM on October 6, 2008


"Or provide some support for users trying to do so."

*phone rings*
"Metafitler tech-support, Jessamyn speaking, what do you want?"
...
"Oh. Well, what about IMG tag?"
"Wrong extension, transferring you to Fuck Off, Jackass department."



Funny that this interchange was followed by a lengthy discussion of the annoyance of one-line snark. What about lengthy, fiction-driven snark?

I hadn't realized that the word "support" would be so immediately translated to mean "phone support". What I had actually intended, and should have specified more clearly, was a simple page that explains: "here are some ways to roll your own BlankityBlankFilter, and here is a link to a usergroup or discussion page of people trying to do the same"

But that actually gives me an idea for a new request-
Can you prevent users from reloading the site too many times in a certain span of time? I'm guessing there are those out there who are just hitting reload-reload-reload to see the comments as they come in, and be the first to post some snarky response to them. I'm positing that 9 times out of 10, they're not helpful. 7 times out of 10, not funny.
posted by prophetsearcher at 3:29 AM on October 7, 2008


Whoops... just realized that could easily be misunderstood as passive agressive towards BB ... I didn't mean to suggest that the reload-reload behavior was happening in this thread . It just made me think of it.
posted by prophetsearcher at 3:31 AM on October 7, 2008


You misspelled "artfully minimal".

On that subject, there is one thing I'd like to see in Mefimail; I'd like it if the number of messages waiting blinked to draw more attention to itself. It's very tiny and I'm not sure if everyone knows to check it when they hit the site.
posted by quin at 7:52 AM on October 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Disemvowelling.

Don't worry, not a chance. While that sort of approach seems to work okay in other communities, it's not right for us at all. I think there are a lot of different approaches to "how to mod" and the MeFi way, labor-intesive as it is, has evolved in a different direction than the TNH/BB way. That said, the alternative is to sometimes delete comments which has its own pitfalls.

But then, why don't you just use it for email rather than have such a thing as MeMail?

MeMail mostly solved a few site problems, it didn't really function as a solution to any administrative problems. In fact, it sort of creates them because, despite the bold text saying

If you have a Metafilter administration request, please use the contact form instead of MeFi Mail, thanks!

People still send admin requests there. This means that instead of messages going to the first available mod (the contact form goes to cortex, mathowie and me... maybe pb, I can't remember) they languish in our individual MeMail box which means if we do something wacky like go on vacation, we often return to HOPEMEHOPEME messages.

However, as Mitheral says above, having MeFiMail as an option means that more members are contactable even if they're not psyched about having a throwaway email address in their profile and that's a net win for the site and makes the site function better.

Having a post-building area/feature is something that would take some work, would re-invent tools that are available elsewhere and isn't a feature in heavy demand (sorry Miko) so it's not something we're really thinking about.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:05 AM on October 7, 2008


maybe pb, I can't remember

Nah, we spare him the bulk of the contact traffic.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:45 AM on October 7, 2008


just realized that could easily be misunderstood as passive agressive towards BB .

nah, it's fine and you raise good points.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:34 AM on October 7, 2008


isn't a feature in heavy demand (sorry Miko)

Oh, I know. I just needed a hobbyhorse to pout about, otherwise the utter and complete perfection of the site would be blinding, of course. This is what I picked.
posted by Miko at 1:14 PM on October 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


Fair enough. I do the same thing, except in my case it's the fact that when Gillian Anderson blinks she closes one eye a fraction of a second before the other.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:23 PM on October 7, 2008 [1 favorite]


So basically implement the top 5 greasemonkey scripts as new features, and everyone is happy?
posted by blue_beetle at 10:14 AM on October 8, 2008


So basically implement the top 5 greasemonkey scripts as new features, and everyone is happy?

No.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 10:35 AM on October 8, 2008


ONLY IF MATT WANTS AN ANTI-TRUST LAWSUIT ON HIS HANDS
posted by Plutor at 12:07 PM on October 8, 2008 [1 favorite]


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