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How long blues January 11, 2010 9:44 AM   Subscribe

How long does it take you to compose a post?

I rarely post on the blue. This is because it takes me around 4 hours to write a couple of paragraphs, find the links and arrange them properly, etc... How long does it take you to make a informative, couple of paragraph long, multi-link post?
posted by horsemuth to MetaFilter-Related at 9:44 AM (118 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

Counting foreplay?
posted by Burhanistan at 9:46 AM on January 11, 2010 [8 favorites]


7+ years.
posted by kalessin at 9:47 AM on January 11, 2010 [4 favorites]


Most of my recent ones have taken maybe half an hour. I have a harder time digging up related links and fussing about phrasing than tracking down the original link. Though sometimes I have an idea for a post and NO good link and figuring out what's the best link [or a good enough one] can take time, like I'll noodle around surfing about a topic for a few days til I find a good one. My desktop is littered with toy instruction manual PDFs from the last one. I must have looked at 20-30 to find a few good ones.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 9:47 AM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


Wow. Word of God not withstanding I would seriously encourage people not to scrounge around until they find a "good enough" link to justify whatever topic they want to chat about.
posted by Wolfdog at 9:50 AM on January 11, 2010 [3 favorites]


So far I'm averaging a few weeks per post. But I've only made one, and it was a link to about 5 hours of documentary videos, so posting it involved finding the time to actually watch them all completely over several evenings. I made some notes about what was in each episode as I was watching.

I probably spent only about an hour on the actual new post form, though. I had the URLs already recorded, and plenty of notes to follow when composing the text.
posted by FishBike at 9:53 AM on January 11, 2010


Word of God not withstanding

Eh? Sometimes I'm reading a book and think "Huh, it would be really neat to have a post about __________ on MetaFilter" Most of my posts come from books. I guess you can argue that this may be against the spirit of "found something cool on the web....?" but really I think they make good MeFi posts. They're definitely not excuses for chatting. Often I'll find a small piece of something online and think "That's a great FPP topic but this is a bad link to make a whole post about..." and then go digging for a good link.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 10:01 AM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


I just type it all up quick and hit post as fast as possible, so no one beats me to the NewsFilter. The admins can go back and fix any typos or messed up links later. If it takes more than three midgets, you're toast.
posted by Plutor at 10:03 AM on January 11, 2010 [12 favorites]


minutes
posted by Plutor at 10:03 AM on January 11, 2010 [5 favorites]


It just took me about an hour to cobble this together, but most of that was spent reading interesting-but-not-really-related things.

And now the only person who's commented is refusing to click on the links; time to eat my feelings.
posted by oinopaponton at 10:05 AM on January 11, 2010


Sometimes I'm reading a book and think "Huh, it would be really neat to have a post about __________ on MetaFilter"

Yeah, exactly. This is not that abnormal a motivation for posting, I don't think. The key thing is to be willing to accept that finding good links is not guaranteed; if you set out with the goal to Make A Post and ignore how well the research process actually goes, that's a problem, but if you go looking for good links about an interesting topic and you find them, that's pretty much a success.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:09 AM on January 11, 2010


Me? Too long.
You? Not long enough.

Seriously, post harder.
posted by Eideteker at 10:09 AM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


I have made two FPPs. The first one took maybe 15 minutes once I had found the site I linked to. The second took a few hours because I was working in a lot of foreign language source material and added a lot of additional links and narrative beyond what was in my inspiration for the post.

So, uhh, an hour or so, on average?
posted by jedicus at 10:10 AM on January 11, 2010


The few times I've posted, it's normally been:
- 5 minutes to see something, decide to post it, and look to ensure it's not a double (the process ends here 99% of the time, as someone usually posted it already)
- About an hour to ponder if it's really worth posting, drafting a post in my head, and thinking about/digging up supporting links
- About 30 minutes getting the wording and links right
- Five minutes last minute proofreading/checking links after hitting Preview.

Total: About an hour and 40 minutes to two hours.
posted by gemmy at 10:15 AM on January 11, 2010


Upon careful review of all my posts, the answer is "not nearly long enough".
posted by GuyZero at 10:16 AM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


It really depends on how informed I am on the topic I'm posting about. Sometimes I know I have a good link, but I end up having to read a lot of related crap to find shiny gems to support that thing I've found.* That can take hours. Other times, the link can stand on its own (or not, hence, crap post) and all that's needed is a quick check to see if the good single link is A) current, and B) not been posted previously.

*Often, my deeper look into things reveals problems with the 'good link' I've found, and I've decided not to post anything. This seems like a bummer, but it has actually saved me from making an ass out of myself on MeFi, by not posting something biased, uninformed, contentious or otherwise deletable and/or embarrassing. Then again, a deeper look into my actual posting history would suggest that this hasn't stopped me. Yikes.
posted by iamkimiam at 10:18 AM on January 11, 2010


I've been working on my first post for 3 years.
I procrastinate, so it is only a paragraph long.
I hope to post it within the next four years.

College panned out for me in a similar way.
posted by Seamus at 10:20 AM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


I initally read this as "compost a post" and I was thinking, "gosh, I don't know, is that some newfangled term for archiving?"
posted by MuffinMan at 10:24 AM on January 11, 2010


I have a bunch of ideas for posts and a folder of links to maybe one day post. I like to do some research so I know a little bit more about the topic. Then I spend probably an hour-2 hours composing, if it's more than a single-link thing. I spend a lot of that time compressing and editing, because I tend to be too wordy. On the whole, the research/link-search phase takes a lot longer than the composition phase, sometimes years.
posted by Miko at 10:28 AM on January 11, 2010


Today's post? Probably 20 seconds.

Something like this - involving link sleuthing and writing my own lead - can take more than hour. Especially if my job keeps interrupting.
posted by Joe Beese at 10:29 AM on January 11, 2010


Drunk or sober?
posted by Halloween Jack at 10:30 AM on January 11, 2010


Just remember kids: you don't have to post any links at all. It's ok.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:31 AM on January 11, 2010 [4 favorites]


> How long does it take you to make a informative, couple of paragraph long, multi-link post?

Sigh. Once more, with feeling: a post does not have to be multi-link and (for Pete's sake) multi-paragraph to be informative. A post that consists of a single link can be excellent. Many multi-link, multi-paragraph posts are (in my opinion) crappy and not worth however long it took to construct them.
posted by languagehat at 10:40 AM on January 11, 2010 [10 favorites]


I keep folders of ideas, too Miko. And jessamyn, I sometimes get ideas from books or other offline pursuits and then look the topic up.

When you come on something good that can stand alone, a post almost writes itself:
5 minutes
15 minutes
15 minutes

Some take a little crafting or fleshing out:
1 to 2 hours
2 hours
2 hours
5 to 6 hours

Sometimes I come across something that fascinates me, but I don't feel I have enough knowledge to craft post or I think the subject deserves more explanation than just a single link. It can sometimes take several weeks of exploring to bring it to a point where I think it is worth a post. With these posts, the journey is usually its own reward.
a few days
a week
a week
a few weeks
a few weeks
a few weeks
posted by madamjujujive at 10:42 AM on January 11, 2010 [8 favorites]


Anywhere from 5 minutes to a week, depending on length, number of links, etc. Sometimes I'll take more time than expected on a thinner post if it's on a political or controversial subject because I want to make sure I'm not editorializing. (And I pretty much wound up being accused of editorializing in that post anyway, so YMMV.)
posted by zarq at 10:43 AM on January 11, 2010


And quoted for truth:
Once more, with feeling: a post does not have to be multi-link and (for Pete's sake) multi-paragraph to be informative. A post that consists of a single link can be excellent.
posted by madamjujujive at 10:44 AM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


Many multi-link, multi-paragraph posts are (in my opinion) crappy and not worth however long it took to construct them.

Hey! I resemble that remark! ;)
posted by zarq at 10:45 AM on January 11, 2010


Eh, not long enough, on one occasion. On the other three, just about ten minutes each, with about seven of those minutes looking for misspellings and two minutes sweating about hitting the submit button.

Most of the time, the things I would like to discuss/read about are found by someone else first, though, so it's all good.
posted by Pragmatica at 10:45 AM on January 11, 2010


In order to make a unique post to MetaFilter, you must first invent the universe...and live your life up until that moment.
posted by DU at 10:46 AM on January 11, 2010


Occasionally lightening will strike while I'm researching other things and I will find something that grabs me, then I'll spend a mad hour or two fact-checking sources and digging up links, and finally 15 seconds to search Metafilter and discover it's a double.
posted by 1f2frfbf at 10:51 AM on January 11, 2010


Too long -- I'm a procrastinator. There's one big post I've been collecting links for since, like, August. I planned to post it in September, then pushed it back to December. I have everything I need, I just can't find the time to collate it all together. There's one similar big post I had actually almost completed sometime last year, but then my browser crashed and I lost it all and I haven't felt like re-assembling it. Bleh.

That's just the worst example. I've got a "Mefi post ideas" bookmarks folder with [counts...] sixty one items. Most of it is one-off stuff I saw on StumbleUpon or whatnot, but some is pretty good material that's just been collecting dust. I have a bad habit of bookmarking stuff and then forgetting it forever. Nowadays I usually don't post something unless it's spur of the moment.

One of these days I'll probably say "fuck it" and post everything I've got in one epic two-month spree. But it's almost more fun in a masochistic way to put it off until somebody else posts it on their own. It's amazing how even the most obscure article or video from twenty years ago will be unearthed and posted by somebody else on here.
posted by Rhaomi at 10:53 AM on January 11, 2010


...and finally 15 seconds to search Metafilter and discover it's a double.

I've finally started doing this step first. Saves me loads of time.
posted by zarq at 10:58 AM on January 11, 2010


A lunch break and a half. Pencil in a week for kicking yourself after your obvious misuse of an idiom goes on the public record.
posted by Iridic at 11:06 AM on January 11, 2010


Anywhere from 5-6 months.

However languagehat is correct in that long multilink posts are not, by default, the cream of the crop. They're usually overstuffed with links that detract from the overall post. I think they've gotten so ridiculous in most cases that I just skip them, 'cause really, who has time to slog through all the links?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:06 AM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


I've never spent more than an hour on a post, and usually just a few minutes. I'm too ADD for anything more than that.
posted by empath at 11:07 AM on January 11, 2010


I've had this idea to do a complete history of the Universe from the big bang to today post with links to about 500 documentaries online, but it would take me so long to make it that I never even get started on it.
posted by empath at 11:09 AM on January 11, 2010


A lifetime leading up to that very moment.
posted by four panels at 11:10 AM on January 11, 2010


Ideally before rigor mortis sets in.
posted by Elmore at 11:10 AM on January 11, 2010


Multi-link? That's your first problem.
posted by chunking express at 11:11 AM on January 11, 2010


Most of mine have been fairly brief one-link, spot the link and post. Maybe an hour each, including angst time. Two took a lot longer, probably around ten hours each, mostly reading or searching time. I have another one I've been working on for two years. It will see the light of day eventually ...
posted by paduasoy at 11:17 AM on January 11, 2010


It really depends on the topic, as a number of people have pointed out. So far the longest it has taken is a couple of hours, as I tend to post on things I've seen recently and the material needed is generally readily available. I concur that time spent thinking about whether to post and proofreading is well spent. I do kick myself (and thank our wonderful moderators) when I mess up on a link or punctuation.
posted by bearwife at 11:20 AM on January 11, 2010


It sounds like I have the same approach as Pragmatica. I read something interesting which rings the MeFi alarm and then I pretty much post it straight away. Results have been mixed, but there you go.
posted by patricio at 11:21 AM on January 11, 2010


Long enough to finish another beer, hold my breath, and hit "post."
posted by Navelgazer at 11:31 AM on January 11, 2010


I'm with madamjujujive and the others who say it depends. Some things which are a single link and interesting on their own only take a few minutes to post. Single link posts are just fine by the way. Only flesh them out with supporting links if those links actually add value. All too often you will see posts on the blue stuffed full if useless related links. Great supporting links, especially on background or helping to put something into context are always welcome. Other posts are fruits of research and that research could take minutes, hours, days, weeks, sometimes even years. If have certain things I have contemplated posting for several years but I don't really have the right links to do the subjects justice yet. Writing a couple of paragraphs sounds easy but this again can take time to do right depending upon the subject.
posted by caddis at 11:32 AM on January 11, 2010


To compost a post? That depends on whether your using hot thermophilic composting or ambient composting, and, even then, it depends on factors like how often you aerate and the size of your composting box. On average, thoigh, I'd say it takes a couple of days.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:42 AM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


Just so you know, I gave myself a crash course in composting specifically to make that joke.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:43 AM on January 11, 2010


Shhhhh! the master is decomposing
posted by horsemuth at 11:49 AM on January 11, 2010


I talked a month ago about how I make posts. Usually I'll have been reading and watching stuff online about subjects that interest me and at the end of that searching I'll sometimes have a post pretty much ready to go. The writing of a post usually doesn't take very long. Like jessamyn and cortex I sometimes get ideas for posts from books (I'd say about a third of those pan out) and I look for stuff online to construct a post around. These can take pretty long, depending, but they're usually about subjects I'm interesting in so I'm happily reading everything I can find about it online.
posted by Kattullus at 11:56 AM on January 11, 2010


Speaking of crafting front page posts, which brave soul is going to post the news of Sarah Palin going to work for Fox?
posted by empath at 11:56 AM on January 11, 2010


I don't think I've ever spent more than 20 minutes on a post although with my recent batting record on doubles, I could probably stand to spend a little more time searching. I've sometimes seen something and thought to myself "hey that would make a neat mefi post" and sat on it for a week or so being lazy and hoping someone else would do it only to end up doing it myself, but that can hardly be counted under composition time.
posted by juv3nal at 12:01 PM on January 11, 2010


My first one took about twenty minutes, seventeen of which were "ok, I need to make sure that NO ONE else has posted this yet, oh geez this is going to be my first post ever in the blue I hope it's not lame because then everyone will mock me."

My second one took about thirty minutes, ten of which were "okay, do all the links work? Do they make sense? Is there enough *stuff* in this post? Has anyone else posted this yet?"

My third one took about five seconds.
posted by Lucinda at 12:17 PM on January 11, 2010


My third one took about five seconds.

That's because you were being naughty and rushing to get the obit post out before anyone else.
posted by Burhanistan at 12:35 PM on January 11, 2010


My posts tend to be NewsFiltery or "OMG THIS IS FUNNY WHY HASN'T IT BEEN ON THE BLUE?" sort of things, so I tend to spend about 30 minutes. Two minutes to find the best link or three for the relevant topic, 10 minutes making sure it hasn't shown up before and finding relevant previously, and four minutes proofreading. The last four are spent agonizing and imagining everyone hating me and Matt personally banhamering me from life because it's JUST NOT DONE to post about a glorified Lady Gaga press release.

I don't remember exactly, but I think Dr. David Burnes says it's important for people with social anxiety to work out their feared fantasy. My social anxiety is so pervasive that it extends to social media.
posted by mccarty.tim at 12:43 PM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


The post? 20 seconds. All in all: 20 seconds plus four hours to drink up the courage to actually post it. The blue is awesome, but it also scares me.
posted by Dumsnill at 12:48 PM on January 11, 2010


Not long at all. My problem is that I don't search enough to make sure I'm not doing a repost. Also posting shouldn't be something that feels forced. If you find something cool and interesting post it.
posted by Mastercheddaar at 12:56 PM on January 11, 2010


Two years, 4 months, a few days and counting...
posted by Cranberry at 12:57 PM on January 11, 2010


Speaking of crafting front page posts, which brave soul is going to post the news of Sarah Palin going to work for Fox

You know, not everything has to be on Metafilter. Can we have a Palin free week, please??!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:09 PM on January 11, 2010 [2 favorites]


If it is a timely thing, you know, a current event, it takes maybe 30 minutes from the time I first see the thing until I can convince myself that no one has actually posted it before (MANY do not pass this stage) and write the post. A few times I've posted about something not-timely that has simply interested me, and took a long time to do it, hours or days. I got too long winded for my own good and the posts probably suffered for it.

Of course, I'm still in the single digits of FPP's. So REALLY it's probably more like several months per post.
posted by dirtdirt at 1:13 PM on January 11, 2010


You know, not everything has to be on Metafilter.

I have to admit that I came over to check for it once I saw the news elsewhere. Let's be honest here - the only purpose such a post would serve is GRARFILTER for those who hate her. I would enjoy such a thread in a morally unjustifiable way. But yeah, we're probably better off without it.
posted by GuyZero at 1:17 PM on January 11, 2010


Can we have a Palin free week, please??!

Make it a decade and you have a deal.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:19 PM on January 11, 2010


My only post took me about 3 hours, because I kept having to ClickyGone it away each time my boss wandered by with some baffling request to "use the google" to "download a website".

One time he handed me a printout of an email from an account that no one in the office has access to, and told me to "click the link". I ran the mouse over the piece of paper, clicked, and told him it looked like the link was broken. I still have a job. Conclusion: my boss is awesome.
posted by elizardbits at 1:24 PM on January 11, 2010 [5 favorites]


The last one I did about Malaysian church-bombing took me a couple of days, because information kept changing very quickly. Otherwise it takes just a few minutes.
posted by divabat at 1:26 PM on January 11, 2010


I had a good idea for a post sometime in 2005 and I'm still working on it. But it's going to be really killer.
posted by iconomy at 1:28 PM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


I compose posts & sometimes comments as Gmail drafts, for the autosaving & access across devices.
posted by Pronoiac at 1:33 PM on January 11, 2010


My Handel's Messiah post took longer than the rest. I played around with formatting, and then it took a while before I really liked the way the links all worked. Probably ten hours total to get it all together, in order, written, and built. I also tend to take FPP Due Diligence seriously. So I generally end up using about 20% of all the material I find for a post. Searching tends to take a lot of that time up. (After a couple pretty thin posts that I felt were... beneath me/us, I decided that I would only post really robust link-heavy things to the front page.)

Also, I'm sort of gathering together information for posts that I'll eventually make. (Mostly obits that I'd like to see done right.) I expect those to take a long time to put together, so I'm doing as much early as possible.
posted by greekphilosophy at 1:36 PM on January 11, 2010


Can we have a Palin free week, please??!

I admit, I thought about posting the story. But it's not really big news, is it? Just another example of Fox preaching to their converted.

BB, don't worry. I highly doubt the story would turn this place upside down the way previous Palin threads have. She's orchestrated her own marginalization, after all.
posted by zarq at 1:38 PM on January 11, 2010


Burhanistan: "Just remember kids: you don't have to post any links at all. It's ok"

Abstinence is the only foolproof way to prevent unwanted deletions.
posted by IndigoRain at 1:42 PM on January 11, 2010


Can we have a Palin free week, please??!

I admit, I thought about posting the story.


That should be a red flag to yourself that your posts are too newsfilterish.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:45 PM on January 11, 2010


If anyone is looking for material, Eric Rohmer is dead.
posted by Joe Beese at 1:55 PM on January 11, 2010


That should be a red flag to yourself that your posts are too newsfilterish.

And in your mind posting about current news stories is bad because....

Most of my posts do relate to news stories. I'd venture to say that most other MeFi posts probably do as well. That doesn't mean they don't belong here.
posted by zarq at 1:55 PM on January 11, 2010


Note: not your posts. The generic you. But don't post that Palin news blip.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:57 PM on January 11, 2010


Note: not your posts. The generic you.

Ah. Ok.

But don't post that Palin news blip.

Don't plan to.

Plus, I'd rather not give the mods more headaches.
posted by zarq at 2:00 PM on January 11, 2010


Metafilter: If it takes more than three midgets, you're toast.
posted by chrisamiller at 2:11 PM on January 11, 2010


two minutes

two hours

two days

two weeks

two months

And others were works in progress that sometimes took years, while waiting for just the right link to appear. I still have a couple of those in the hopper. And I tweak and tweak and fiddle around with them, too.
posted by y2karl at 2:13 PM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


y2karl, your Blind Willie Johnson post is still one of my all-time favorites.

Several months later, I remember watching a West Wing episode repeat which referenced the fact that his music was included with Voyager:
...Voyager, in case it's ever encountered by extra-terrestrials, is carrying photos of life on Earth, greetings in 55 languages and a collection of music from Gregorian chants to Chuck Berry ... including ... "Dark Was The Night, Cold Was The Ground" by Twenties bluesman Blind Willie Johnson, whose stepmother blinded him at seven by throwing lye in his eyes after his father beat her for being with another man. He died, penniless, of pneumonia after sleeping bundled in wet newspapers in the ruins of his house that burned down, but his music just left the solar system.

posted by zarq at 2:18 PM on January 11, 2010


I spent like two days coming up with this FPP, and noted in the course of things that Wikipedia was oddly silent on the subject.

Within 24 hours of my post, wikipedia had a very nice article based wholly on the research I'd done. I thought that was cool.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 2:30 PM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


My quickest are complete in 45 minutes, the longer ones stew for months. The longest I've actively worked was over one weekend.

However languagehat is correct in that long multilink posts are not, by default, the cream of the crop. They're usually overstuffed with links that detract from the overall post.

Hello, my name is filthy light thief, and I'm an infoholic. I try to cut back, but then it feels like I'm skimping. I get this sensation like there's more information out there, just behind the next link or under a different search term. And then there's the phrasing of things. The words, oh the words! They mean so much, and if put together incorrectly, they make me feel all weird. I still regret some phrasing on my Pogues post, and it's been months (though it feels like years).

With this, I formally leave brevity to others, and I embrace infogluttony.
posted by filthy light thief at 2:36 PM on January 11, 2010 [3 favorites]


Speaking of crafting front page posts, which brave soul is going to post the news of Sarah Palin going to work for Fox

You know, not everything has to be on Metafilter. Can we have a Palin free week, please??!


Ladies and gentlemen in want of PalinFilter, I offer MetaChat's thread. It's no Politicalfilter, but it has this bit of news for discussion. (Though now it's diverged into a discussion of circus peanuts.)
posted by filthy light thief at 2:43 PM on January 11, 2010


If it takes more than three midgets, you're toast.

Usually when people correct their typos right after their comment, I think, "Heh, that wasn't necessary because I knew what they meant." In this case, however, I had absolutely no idea what you meant.
posted by yeti at 2:44 PM on January 11, 2010


Can we have a Palin free week, please??!

I suggest we re-open in perpetuity the original Palin thread from 2008. All discussion can be wrangled there but you have to suffer through the five minute load time first.
posted by yeti at 2:51 PM on January 11, 2010


I suggest we re-open in perpetuity the original Palin thread from 2008. All discussion can be wrangled there but you have to suffer through the five minute load time first.

It's even longer on a Blackberry. :P
posted by zarq at 2:54 PM on January 11, 2010


I generally enjoy reading inovlved posts on a topic, especially if they're supported by excellent links. But like empath I've never had the patience to churn those types of posts out. There's a few back in there that are a paragraph long, and a couple with lots of text filled into title fields etc, but most of my posts don't take that long. First the link, the finding of which almost always initiates post construction. Then there's a big stretchy section. If there isn't anything else about the initial link out there, I can find that out pretty quick and it's on to the next step in about twenty minutes. But if there's relevant stuff to be found, the finding and digesting and filtering process can range anywhere between 20 minutes and a week. Next is searching MeFi, again can be quick if there's nothing to be found (yay!) or it's a clear double (aw!), and then somewhat lengthy if there's related material that needs to be referenced. Finally, I'm not really one with the words handy so it comes to a fitful wrangling that I lose patience with pretty much after twenty minutes . Let's see, with the, and the, and ok, yep, that comes to, hmm, somewhere about between 25 minutes and a week.
posted by carsonb at 2:55 PM on January 11, 2010


Oh, and since I'm a favorites whore I'll just go ahead and link to a couple to illustrate.

lots of digesting, composing, wrangling, etc: The Young Island Surtsey
super-quick: Star Maiden, Walking Liberty / Descending Night, Audrey Munson
posted by carsonb at 2:59 PM on January 11, 2010


Post in haste, repent at leisure. Not always though! I've poured hours of effort into posts that sank without a trace, and I've posted off-the-cuff SLYT posts that have gone over astonishingly well (RESULTS NOT TYPICAL).
posted by hermitosis at 3:04 PM on January 11, 2010


Sarah Palin is going to work for fox? Good Lord.
posted by not that girl at 3:25 PM on January 11, 2010


Harry Reid said something something Negro.
posted by fixedgear at 3:28 PM on January 11, 2010


gasphlemy!
posted by carsonb at 3:39 PM on January 11, 2010


You know what? That would be a good idea. We just have huge, evergrowing threads on issues Metafilter just can't handle normally. We'll have a Palin thread, a Circumcision thread, Should I eat it thread, and a Lady Gaga thread. Whenever you feel the urge to deal with those overexposed subjects, you go to the one jet black section of MetaFilter and shamefully post your latest thoughts. To deal with the overload, we leverage some Google Wave APIs.

It could be called ForgiveMe.
posted by mccarty.tim at 3:59 PM on January 11, 2010 [2 favorites]


Posts need to stew for three days, minimum.
posted by zennie at 5:07 PM on January 11, 2010


Just to be clear, my dyspeptic comment above was not directed against horsemuth (and certainly not at y2karl, who basically can do no wrong as far as I'm concerned); it's a result of an automatic subroutine in the LH programming that prompts me to rant about long posts not being better than short ones any time the subject is raised.
posted by languagehat at 5:58 PM on January 11, 2010


No foreplay, no nothing. I just shove it in when Ms. Palin is involved...shove it into the blue that is.
posted by hal_c_on at 6:17 PM on January 11, 2010


I'm in the languagehat school of less is more but I tend to topic areas that I suspect are less familiar to the general readership so sometimes hunt around for a bit of supporting material to provide context.
I've also found that even where I think the main link to an archive or something could be enough stood alone, it pays to highlight sections of the site you're linking to or specific pages there to give a casual reader of the FPP a better idea of what's on offer - that usually doesn't take that much extra time though, as I by and large post things I've chanced across myself and found interesting and will have explored them quite extensively before it occurs to post them here.
So, anything from a few minutes coming up with decent copy to introduce a single link to maybe an hour for something a bit more fleshed out. Then the slow agonising regret as you hit post and spot the typos, or more usually some dickhead straight out the gate goes for our famous thread-shitting or talks about America instead.
posted by Abiezer at 6:25 PM on January 11, 2010


stupidsexyFlanders: Within 24 hours of my post, wikipedia had a very nice article based wholly on the research I'd done. I thought that was cool.

Oh geez... that Wikipedia article led me to the page on Jessica Dubroff and from there to the one on Vicki Van Meter. My god, those were depressing reads. I think I may just go hug the sheets for a while and think about the awfulness of the world until enveloped by the sweet oblivion of sleep.
posted by Kattullus at 6:45 PM on January 11, 2010


One to two minutes, max. I stumble across something that makes me think "That might be Metafiltery", check the link, if it's a rare occasion when it hasn't been posted already, then boom, done.

I have almost never followed more than one or possibly two links in any of the huge, multilink posts made in the last ten years. They aren't up my alley at all, though I understand that people seem to like them.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:45 PM on January 11, 2010


I just shove it in when Ms. Palin is involved...shove it into the blue that is.

That was a fairly offensive metaphor and a bad post to boot. Deleted.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:46 PM on January 11, 2010 [1 favorite]


Still working on it.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 7:22 PM on January 11, 2010


That was a fairly offensive metaphor and a bad post to boot. Deleted.

Eek. Didn't mean to offend, although yeah...agreed.

Too bad I JUST saw this right now. Dang it.
posted by hal_c_on at 7:23 PM on January 11, 2010


I generally spend several hours creating my crafting FPPs. Most of that time I spend googling. I just keep searching on every related term I can think of until I am not turning up anything new anymore. I copy all the links I find into a word file with a one sentence description to remind me what it's for. Then when I've finshed my research, I start to actually write the post. Just writing the paragraph or two of text doesn't take long. I use a formula anyway, i.e., "If you've got lots of x lying around, you can make this, and this, or that". Tagging takes awhile, and is a tedious drag, because my posts have an average of about 20 links each.

I haven't done a non-crafting post in ages. I'd like to start doing some soonish though, because I have some ideas. I think I've become much better at the whole FPP creation thing because I've clued in to the idea of how I can follow my train of thought to find supplementary links to flesh out the post. For example, in the 2004 election, I did a post about some young women who were doing a "Babes for Kerry" election campaign. It was a weak post. I should have followed up on my "hmm, politics do make for strange bedfellows" reaction and found some other oddball Kerry supporter organizations. A collection of them would have made for a really fun post.

At this point I think I'd generally spend a few hours on any kind of post. The kind of posts you do in a few minutes only really work if you find something so incredible it can stand alone. Otherwise it's up to the poster to put the elements together in a way that makes for a worthwhile post.
posted by orange swan at 7:58 PM on January 11, 2010


The kind of posts you do in a few minutes only really work if you find something so incredible it can stand alone. Otherwise it's up to the poster to put the elements together in a way that makes for a worthwhile post.

'Incredible' isn't and never has been the bar to hurdle, and sets a daunting and unfair target, particularly for new people who want to contribute. 'New (to Metafilter)', 'interesting' or 'amusing' are just fine.

I hesitate to be prescriptive, but for my part, the original guidelines for posting are just as valid as they ever have been: found something interesting you want to share? Then post it.

I think things are just fine for the most part with a mix of different kinds of posts, but I do think the best Metafilter things are posted through serendipity rather than deliberateness, by people finding something cool and saying 'I want to share this with people' rather than thinking 'I want to post about something, now I need to go find stuff to post'.

All good, though.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:08 PM on January 11, 2010 [4 favorites]


Eight years, three months--and counting.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 8:26 PM on January 11, 2010


For lightweight stuff, between 20 and 60 minutes. For longer, more complex topics three to five hours. Neither including translation to the form.

Question for you all: I just pop open a notepad screen when a post idea comes, then put my URLs in with the text (on separate lines to make selecting easier.) Then I do the cutting and pasting on the fly at the form. I find this makes it easier to change post wording, which always seems to happen as I'm filling in the form. Is there a quicker way to take notes that still doesn't tie a URL to specific words?

(If that question is is too much of a derail, please ignore.)
posted by Hardcore Poser at 8:40 PM on January 11, 2010


I have a post that I've actually been working on, on and off, for about ten months now.

I'm serious.

And now I'll never get it done because it'll seem like it has to be the best post in the history of the world.
posted by koeselitz at 9:41 PM on January 11, 2010


– Oh, and I decided two weeks ago because of that one metatalk post that it's gonna have one link per letter in the heading of it. So there, haters.
posted by koeselitz at 9:46 PM on January 11, 2010


It takes me less than thirty minutes.
posted by KokuRyu at 10:41 PM on January 11, 2010


Depends on what kind of paper I print it out on and whether or not I shred it before composting.
posted by From Bklyn at 2:29 AM on January 12, 2010


I have subscribed to stavros's newsletter.
posted by languagehat at 6:10 AM on January 12, 2010


I once wrote an article, or "piece", as we writers call it, on What The Well-Dressed Man is Posting for stavros's newsletter.
posted by Wolfdog at 6:28 AM on January 12, 2010 [1 favorite]


I've been here for 4 years and done 10 blue posts, so it takes 4/10 of a year to do one.
posted by Mister_A at 7:27 AM on January 12, 2010


I usually try to include a bunch of supporting links, a good "more inside", and all that, but my last two have been single-links. Usually, though, about half an hour - I'll have one main link that I'll find, then spend that time building around it.
posted by DecemberBoy at 7:28 AM on January 12, 2010


To deal with the overload, we leverage some Google Wave APIs.
I can't tell whether this is sarcasm, but Google Wave can barely load more than 10-message threads on my Eee PC. Now I hate the (rare) occasions when my friends use it.
posted by tantivy at 11:17 AM on January 12, 2010


Okay I just made a post and it took maybe... 45 minutes. I broke it down more or less like this

- see link on Twitter and think "oh that looks interesting"
- go to page hosting video
- go to actual YouTube page
- turn on Cool Book because my laptop is now overheating
- Watch YouTube video all the way through
- look for some more stuff about the video
- find what looks to be an interesting JStor article
- what was my JStor login again, that I was borrowing from my friend...?
- look up old wiki page where I keep all my library cards on my old puzzle hunt team's page
- notice that they're playing again this weekend, shake fist
- Get the login, forget my friend's last name
- go to facebook to get friend's last name so I can log into her JStor
- look at article from Journal of American Studies that calls the Lomaxes bad men
- find a film review of the little movie from Journal of American Studies in 1976 that I think is viewable to everyone [it's one page]
- find a few Google Books articles that refer this this article and read them quicklike
- find an article from Library of Congress that isn't behind a paywall but *is* a pdf
- download it and see if it's okay, it is
- see that there was already a post about Pete Seeger about Rainbow Quest, make sure it's not a double
- notice it was posted by shetterly in September, aww shetterly
- get lost watching Rainbow Quest videos for a while
- "your post does not have a title, please correct this"
- agonize over leadbelly vs. "Lead Belly"
- press "post"
- say "oh I've got a message"
- it's from Matt "success your post is live!" grumba grumba
- send a message back to the guy who sent the link around twitter
- read hilarious printer cartoon
- and now I'm here, more or less
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:48 PM on January 12, 2010 [3 favorites]


I swear I've seen that footage linked off here before jessamyn, though might have been from somewhere else. Not saying so in the thread because I think it's a great post whatever the case.
posted by Abiezer at 8:26 PM on January 12, 2010


Yeah it really seemed like something that would have been here before but I did a tag search and a regular search and didn't find it. Maybe it was in a comment someplace...
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:30 PM on January 12, 2010


Was just trying a search myself so it didn't seem I was pulling that out of nowhere - some idea it was in an earlier thread on Seeger's TV show, but can't find it on a fairly careful look so even if it was there definitely buried enough to deserve pulling out, dusting down and sticking on the front page.
posted by Abiezer at 8:34 PM on January 12, 2010


...anywhere from 5 minutes if the links speak for themselves, to several weeks building an epic post, or boiling something down to its essential links. I like when the idea for an FPP strikes; I often want to post it immediately, but then I make myself sit on it for a while just to be sure.
posted by not_on_display at 9:19 PM on January 12, 2010


is grumba gruma GRAR's less highly-strung little brother?
posted by patricio at 1:50 AM on January 13, 2010


Grubma grumba is what the guy from Little Caesar's says when he has to work late.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:09 AM on January 13, 2010


I swear I've seen that footage linked off here before jessamyn, though might have been from somewhere else.

So it seemed to me, too, but then I am familiar with the film, its story, Leadbelly's story and his relationship with the Lomaxes, so there is that. And the annotation did fill the post out very well with all that, so there is that, too. The post was OK but I wasn't swooning because I had seen the movie and read similar articles. Or maybe just waxpancake's comment here.

Leadbelly is such a problematic figure to me--he encompasses everything about the people who constructed Folk Music in the 1930s. But, neverheless, that is a very stylish film and he did have a hell of a voice.
posted by y2karl at 12:07 PM on January 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


Or rather, his story encompasses everything that troubles me about the people who.....
posted by y2karl at 12:11 PM on January 13, 2010 [1 favorite]


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