Join 3,428 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)

Other-Linking
August 22, 2011 2:45 PM   Subscribe

Is it kosher to repost someone else's self-link?

What's the policy on reposting content/topics that have been deleted for being a self-link? Once in a while a post will highlight something interesting or lead to good content, but it turns out to have been posted in less-than-good faith. Is there an official policy to shun self-linkers and not link anything from or about them ever again?
posted by kyleg to Etiquette/Policy at 2:45 PM (26 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

Is it kosher to repost someone else's self-link?

That's a good, if tricky, question.

My personal mod feeling is that while it's technically okay [i.e. we wouldn't ban you for doing it] it's pretty clearly using MeFi to promote something that the site creator was intent on promoting in ways here that are not kosher. Additionally, there's the sketchy aspect that we don't know if YOU are friends with the self-linker in which case that falls under the friendslink "not okay" heading. I guess I feel that if someone linked to something here and got banned for it, reposting the link isn't that cool. There's a ton of awesome stuff on the web, I personally would feel weird giving spammers extra eyeballs.

As far as topics and not the actual links themselves, probably totally okay. If you have something specific in mind, please feel free to bring it up since the answer to these sorts of things seems to always be "it depends"
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:52 PM on August 22, 2011 [1 favorite]


It depends
posted by Sailormom at 2:58 PM on August 22, 2011 [3 favorites]


Yeah, it's more of a "this is a sore spot" thing than a "this is not allowed" thing. I'd personally rather not see something that's been deleted as a self-link show up again on the front page because I think that it's sort of rewarding the transgression indirectly in a way that, well, makes me grumpy, but at the same time the transgression is something sort of mefi-specific whereas the thing being linked may be neat in a more broad sense.

The details of the nature of the original self-link situation, the specific relationship between the original poster and the content, the way the deletion went down, and the nature of the actual content are the whammy factors I'd see as playing into making a decision there, if the decision isn't just a flat out "no, ugh, don't encourage that shit". Person mentioning cool thing they're tangentially involved in because the the thing is cool is certainly a somewhat different flavor of self-link than scummy SEO duder posting his shitty site or his client's shitty site because he doesn't give the least fuck about mefi.

But, yeah, that's all qualifications to my general feeling that, no, ugh. If someone had the poor sense to taint whatever they posted by so directly transgressing against the site guidelines, I think it's reasonable to just not have a post about their thing, even if it's cool. Let the rest of the internet link to it if it's neat, and leave it at that.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:00 PM on August 22, 2011


"I personally would feel weird giving spammers extra eyeballs."

Could someone draw me a picture of that? Not just of a spammer with extra eyeballs, but of Jessamyn actually handing them to the spammer, or inserting them surgically, or doing whatever it is she does and however she does that?

'cuz I just can't get that image in my head without saying "naw...that's not how that looks!"
posted by tomswift at 3:01 PM on August 22, 2011 [1 favorite]


This seems like a rare and treacherous enough situation that if you're ever going to do it, you'd probably want to privately clear it with the mods first. They're going to be on high-alert about that link anyway (as jessamyn mentioned).

I also agree with cortex that if there's not a clear-cut rule, there should at least be a strong presumption against reposting deleted self-links so as not to reward the culprits.
posted by John Cohen at 3:04 PM on August 22, 2011


Aw, man, I had this huge super duper example.com linkfest all lined up and just about ready to post!
posted by Sys Rq at 3:06 PM on August 22, 2011 [2 favorites]


Odds are, if it's an interesting enough subject for a post, there'll be a way to put it together without using the original self-link.
posted by mannequito at 3:06 PM on August 22, 2011


Even trickier, the actual deleted post that prompted the question linked only to an article which they were interviewed for and relates to the actual content that I would link, though it was linked by them in the comments. It's such a rare case that I wondered if there was any sort of precedent or consensus on the matter. I don't even want to directly point it out if it's in any way problematic, but it would be pretty easy to figure out from my recent commenting history if anyone is so desperate to know.

I did consider asking through the contact form, but searching MeTa didn't bring up anything and I thought it might be good to have some sort of policy as a matter of public record.
posted by kyleg at 3:06 PM on August 22, 2011


What if the link is me eating a cheeseburger? That's not kosher, right?
posted by GuyZero at 3:12 PM on August 22, 2011


tomswift: ""I personally would feel weird giving spammers extra eyeballs."

Could someone draw me a picture of that? Not just of a spammer with extra eyeballs, but of Jessamyn actually handing them to the spammer, or inserting them surgically, or doing whatever it is she does and however she does that?

'cuz I just can't get that image in my head without saying "naw...that's not how that looks!"
"

Perhaps something like this?
posted by Splunge at 3:12 PM on August 22, 2011


I did consider asking through the contact form, but searching MeTa didn't bring up anything and I thought it might be good to have some sort of policy as a matter of public record.

Yeah, it's fine to talk about here. It's a weird, tricky situation, so sort of hashing out where we are on it in public is a decent idea.

With the specific recent case (I figured that's what you're talking about), our take on it was this was a really dumbass thing for an otherwise longtimer member who does cool stuff to pull, but was more bad-judgement than SEO-motherfucker, so ultimately we deleted it and left it at "this was bad and cannot ever even smell like it's happening again" with them.

So to an extent, I both feel like it would be among the less problematic things to repost and yet feel like we're already being lenient about breaking the One Big Rule and that further reposting the thing is, yeah, effectively saying Don't Do That, Wink Wink at that point, so I'd rather not have that happen here.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:22 PM on August 22, 2011


the actual deleted post that prompted the question linked only to an article which they were interviewed for and relates to the actual content that I would link

Yeah if it's the one I'm thinking of, I agree with cortex. Great thing, sullied by the fact that it was basically self-linked here. I'd prefer if you didn't repost it.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 3:36 PM on August 22, 2011


I wouldn't reward the person who would be willing to undermine the rules here regarding self-promotion.
posted by crunchland at 3:45 PM on August 22, 2011


I think I know exactly what you're talking about, and whilst I'm sure we're all tempted and fascinated at the prospect of ordering our own Cordoban Jamon, I cannot entertain the notion of promoting it at the expense of the equally delicious jamon from Lisbon, Corsica and the Castilian Jamons, which are criminally under-rated (to say nothing of produced).
posted by smoke at 4:10 PM on August 22, 2011 [5 favorites]


What if the link is me eating a cheeseburger? That's not kosher, right?

As long as there's lettuce in between the cheese & beef I don't see a problem. Of course that might run afoul of our Yezidi brethren. It's always something.
posted by scalefree at 4:26 PM on August 22, 2011


The mods are king on this one. While I think the forthrightness of the poster of the deleted thread points to the idea that they truly didn't realize they were doing something unkosher, and thus would probably be okay with the (quite interesting) content being reposted, I can also see the need to not allow for that sort of precedent.

In other words, I don't think the errant poster would be rewarded for breaking the rules here so much, but I'd worry about others trying similar things in the future without the quasi-good-faith of ignorance.
posted by Navelgazer at 4:35 PM on August 22, 2011


I'd personally rather not see something that's been deleted as a self-link show up again on the front page

It also gets iffy because if Joe Schmoe posts a self-link (to an admittedly cool site -- think 'Ebert analyzing Alien films while fighting Michelle Bachmann' for a mefi triple play) as an FPP and it gets erased an hour later, and then six months later I come across the site and post it, do I get the smackdown for not researching the last year's worth of deleted posts before posting?
posted by ricochet biscuit at 4:53 PM on August 22, 2011 [1 favorite]


I wouldn't reward the person who would be willing to undermine the rules here regarding self-promotion.

I think if a link is good enough, or relevant enough to my interests, than I don't really care where it came from.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 4:57 PM on August 22, 2011


do I get the smackdown for not researching the last year's worth of deleted posts before posting?

No, that's where we move off pretty unambiguously into "the sting is gone and you didn't do anything wrong" territory. Worst case scenario is that the original spam thing was egregious enough that we delete the post on principle anyway but not give you shit about it because how would you know?

But I don't think we've ever had that situation arise, because the really egregious spam is mostly links to stuff that's total shit anyway. So it'd stand a good chance of being deleted for being a shitty post, I guess, but that's about all.
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:08 PM on August 22, 2011


do I get the smackdown for not researching the last year's worth of deleted posts before posting?

Not by any of the mods, no.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 5:14 PM on August 22, 2011


Could someone draw me a picture of that?

Something like this, I'm thinking.
posted by octobersurprise at 5:29 PM on August 22, 2011


I think it would end up being a contentious thread.
posted by theora55 at 6:10 AM on August 23, 2011


Is it kosher to repost someone else's self-link?

I hate to be pedantic but the correct term for use in this context on MetaFilter is halal.
posted by Meatbomb at 7:03 AM on August 23, 2011


What if the link is me eating a cheeseburger? That's not kosher, right?

HALAL, ffs, HALAL! And it would be a double (see above).
posted by Meatbomb at 7:20 AM on August 23, 2011


I like treif posts and I cannot lie. (You other brothers might deny.)
posted by Sophie1 at 8:18 AM on August 23, 2011


Mods- why are you so righteous? Tell me you're going to crack someday. (Prefereably tell me in advance so I can be on scene with a camera crew). With your power and regular confrontation flashpoints I'd be knee deep in blood and quickly. Cheers for keeping your humour and the community together.
posted by Gratishades at 2:34 PM on August 26, 2011


« Older Wouldn't it be nice to be able...  |  Here is where I ask if Glassbo... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments