Join 3,558 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)

Tags:

What to do when threads result in name calling?
June 7, 2013 7:11 PM   Subscribe

See Inside

I have had this problem a few times. Here's the situation.

A post will be of the form "New Research Shows x implies y"

I will make a post that says "Actually abc implies y doesn't exist"

Someone will say "abc doesn't exist!"

I provide sources

Someone calls me a derogatory name or gives a witty put down devoid of content

I say that isn't called for and reiterate sources/provide more.

I become unpopular and everyone flags my post and the last name caller gets a bunch of upvotes.


For complete disclosure this has just happened in the thread on female masturbation on the front page. Is this really how the site works? I'm relatively new but it's very much a popularity contest where people seem unwilling to engage in discussion and let go of their sacred cows. Any input, even if I disagree with it, would be appreciated.
posted by ishrinkmajeans to Etiquette/Policy at 7:11 PM (886 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite

Link.
posted by gaspode at 7:18 PM on June 7, 2013


Thanks
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 7:19 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'd suggest that you flag it and move on, using the exclamation mark underneath the offending comment. You can also use the contact form at the bottom of each page if you want to discuss anything with the mods. I've always found them reasonable and very quick to respond.

It can get rough in some threads and if you're new then it's somewhat startling. You always have the option to disengage and go do something else if a thread upsets you. Good luck, I hope you stick around.
posted by arcticseal at 7:19 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


You made an unsourced inflammatory comment that was a tangent at best, and it went over... inflammatorily. Then you doubled down on both the lack of sourcing and the claims. Those are both things people respond to vigorously. If you want to avoid that kind of response, it's better to do the research first, rather than after starting an argument. In this particular case, it still probably would have gotten deleted and/or cut off as a derail, because it is in fact a derail in that thread. (I was cleaning the catbox when it went up, or I would have cut it out before everyone jumped on it.)

People insulting your argument isn't usually treated as name-calling, but you are welcome to flag it, and we'll take a look.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 7:22 PM on June 7, 2013 [37 favorites]


I'm relatively new but it's very much a popularity contest where people seem unwilling to engage in discussion and let go of their sacred cows

On the flip side, I've noticed your username because you seem to keep coming into threads and dropping whatever contrarian point of view you can almost reflexively. I know that's kind of fun in college to always be the "what if we got it all wrong?!" guy, but it's kind of tedious when there's a perfectly fine conversation taking place that gets derailed by a user saying they don't believe the basic premise of a post or purposely flip facts around to spark discussion or claim something with decades of law sounds flimsy.

It's not a popularity contest that's at play, it's more to do with people that constantly post contrarian viewpoints or attempt to derail conversations are using some of the same tactics of people that troll discussion sites trying to get a rise out of others. If you say you're sincere in all these threads, I'll take that at face value but it's kind of indistinguishable from someone wanting to tweak people having a discussion about x to constantly pop in and say "but what about y? has anyone thought about y? also I don't think x is real".
posted by mathowie (staff) at 7:24 PM on June 7, 2013 [86 favorites]


I don't know whether this is just my impression, but your contributions since you've joined seem very trollish. I've actually noticed your contributions as being kind of irritating. I think your comments in the thread about female masturbation are very much along the same lines as your trollish-seeming comments elsewhere.

You seem to have a habit of making offensive, ill-founded generalizations that seem calculated to rile people up:

I'm having a hard time buying the premise that women masturbate less because of shame. They can get sex easier than men (on average) and may have lower sex drives (again on average). Both of which are perfectly fine and dont require the intervention of a cartoon vagina.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 5:26 PM on June 7


And in the Colin McGinn thread, you did this thing where you acted like you couldn't see what was so wrong with a professor sending sexually explicit e-mails to his assistant/graduate student -- and those comments seemed trollish too, designed to just stir people up and get attention for yourself.

In short, your comments seem to rub people the wrong way, and it seems intentional. I really do not think the problem is with Metafilter.
posted by Unified Theory at 7:26 PM on June 7, 2013 [27 favorites]


I was cleaning the catbox when it went up, or I would have cut it out before everyone jumped on it

Can we refer to deleting derails as "cleaning the catbox" from now on?
posted by nathancaswell at 7:27 PM on June 7, 2013 [111 favorites]


I didn't call you a name, maybe someone else with a deleted comment did, though. I said your sources were suspect for determining "truth", being Wikipedia links to one researcher. Also, that post wan't about research, it was about game.
posted by donnagirl at 7:27 PM on June 7, 2013


I sometimes feel like certain members treat the site as popularity contests or open mic night at the comedy club, and I also see people entrenching on beliefs they do not want to let go, but I have never seen an "unwillingness to engage in discussion." I also think the kind of members you describe are in the vast minority, since I bet I could make a list and run out before I reached 10.

In short, you may be correct, but I doubt it.
posted by cjorgensen at 7:29 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Cleaning the catbox" pairs well with cortex's "morning run through the fuckers list", too.
posted by donnagirl at 7:30 PM on June 7, 2013 [16 favorites]


"Cleaning the catbox" pairs well with cortex's "morning run through the fuckers list", too.

We do try to divide up the workload...
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 7:33 PM on June 7, 2013 [22 favorites]


You seem to have a habit of making offensive, ill-founded generalizations that seem calculated to rile people up:

I'm having a hard time buying the premise that women masturbate less because of shame. They can get sex easier than men (on average) and may have lower sex drives (again on average). Both of which are perfectly fine and dont require the intervention of a cartoon vagina.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 5:26 PM on June 7


See here's the thing - I see nothing offensive about men wanting more sex than women. If I said all women are frigid or all men are perverts sure. But I went out of my way to say that this was a fact devoid of judgement. And it's not all that illfounded - I didn't provide sources at first because I thought it was obvious on its face. And I wasn't trolling either - I just don't do that. But if the Argument of a thread is based on a faulty premise I can't call it out?

Clarification: Not all people are calling me names per se but they respond by trying to come up with witticisms and sound bites that deride my argument but don't provide facts. Restless nomads it really makes me upset that you let elizardbits deride my comment as "dopey patriarchy bullshit" and then when I reiterated my Wikipedia article with sources to peer reviewed research you deleted it. I am literally seething with rage at you right now.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 7:40 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


Can I just say one more time that those weren't sources, and that wasn't the topic of the thread?
posted by donnagirl at 7:44 PM on June 7, 2013 [13 favorites]


Threads don't always - or even usually - have "arguments." They have subjects, presented for discussion. Approaching a thread as if the subject is an argument you have to pick apart isn't going to work out very well as a broad strategy here.

And I deleted it because whether women's libidos are higher or lower than men's is completely irrelevant to the thread. And insisting on that argument reads very much like an insistence on making the conversation about men, which is an often-unconscious but still very much sexist impulse that is likely to piss a lot of people off.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 7:45 PM on June 7, 2013 [52 favorites]


I generally hate the term "mansplain," and I only suspect that you are a man, but your comment seemed like you were mansplaining why the premise of the masturbation destigmatizing site was all wrong ... because the site-makers misunderstood the female libido.

And it really does seem pretty offensive to dismiss the subject of a thread by mansplaining the female libido.
posted by Unified Theory at 7:53 PM on June 7, 2013 [17 favorites]


See here's the thing - I see nothing offensive about men wanting more sex than women. If I said all women are frigid or all men are perverts sure. But I went out of my way to say that this was a fact devoid of judgement.

The problem wasn't that people thought your fact was judgemental. The problem was that it wasn't a fact, and the sources you found to back up your claim were themselves suspect.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:53 PM on June 7, 2013 [22 favorites]


http://www.gamification.co/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/hpt-infographic.png

The frequency of masturbation by women is less than xyz which is deemed low. Why? Because they're comparing it to the frequency of masturbation of men. Which is a false premise because women have different sex drives than men. My post is not irrelevant to attack this premise by pointing out the differences in men and women.

Donnagirl I'm not sure why you say those weren't sources. For topic of the thread see above.

Also, if I posted an article people didnt agree with would they not debate it? I don't understand why a debate is not allowed - is there any reason other than it just isn't.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 7:55 PM on June 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


I see nothing offensive about men wanting more sex than women

I think one of the problems with things like this is that you often make comments like this and then double-down on them without listening to feedback; it's cool if you think that there's nothing offensive about men wanting more sex than women but some people, including me, tried to demonstrate to you that this pervasive idea can be harmful to individual women. When people express this to you, rather than accepting or even acknowledging a new viewpoint, you try to explain why you're right. You're not actual engaging with the discussion and you seem unwilling to accept that maybe some of your premises are incorrect or, at least, problematic to other people actually talking to you.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:55 PM on June 7, 2013 [23 favorites]


It seems like you're just spoiling for an argument and -- like mathowie said -- coming in and intentionally being contrarian, and that's annoying and immature.
posted by Unified Theory at 7:56 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


Why? Because they're comparing it to the frequency of masturbation of men.

This is also not a fact. It is an assumption.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 7:56 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


Which is a false premise because women have different sex drives than men.

We don't, you know.

And my own source for that claim is my being a woman.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:56 PM on June 7, 2013 [27 favorites]


Which is a false premise because women have different sex drives than men.

Again, you keep saying this.

Also, if I posted an article people didnt agree with would they not debate it? I don't understand why a debate is not allowed - is there any reason other than it just isn't.

I think one of the issues in this case is that you are not actually debating; you're saying stuff but you're not making actual arguments, you're making (erroneous) assumptions and then, when you are questioned on them, you seem to accuse others of acting in bad faith. That's not a debate.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:57 PM on June 7, 2013 [22 favorites]


I flagged the crap out of that thread (and used the contact form) because I thought the entire derail should be deleted, not just the rebuttal (and counter-rebuttals) to the resounding chorus of "you are wrong". We've had mega-cleanups before, and it does work.

Also, ISMJ, this is not the place to have the redo of thread you might have wanted to have over in the blue.
posted by 0xFCAF at 7:58 PM on June 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


Does he really get to come over here and say all the same weird things about female sexuality that were deleted from the blue?
posted by donnagirl at 7:58 PM on June 7, 2013 [26 favorites]


Which is a false premise because women have different sex drives than men.

We don't, you know.

In absolute fairness to the poster, it is true that (individual) women have different sex drives than (individual) men. For example, I had a MUCH higher sex drive than my ex-boyfriend. See? It was SUPER different!
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:59 PM on June 7, 2013 [9 favorites]


I don't understand why a debate is not allowed - is there any reason other than it just isn't

restless_nomad did a good example of explaining this already. Not every thread is for "debate" and they're rarely presented as "arguments" at all. The premise of the site is to find interesting things on the web, and also to discuss them. I think you might be missing the key concept of the site. It's not about scoring points or being contrarian or trying to debate everyone.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 7:59 PM on June 7, 2013 [20 favorites]


"Do women have lower libido than men?" would make a perfectly reasonable Ask, ne? ishrinkmajeans, if you were to post such an Ask, it would demonstrate good faith.
posted by LogicalDash at 7:59 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


Time to check amazon for mossarium supplies, banjo strings and bike gloves again.
posted by boo_radley at 8:01 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


In absolute fairness to the poster, it is true that (individual) women have different sex drives than (individual) men.

Oh, absolutely. I suspect that this is not what ismj was meaning, however.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:02 PM on June 7, 2013



And my own source for that claim is my being a woman.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:56 PM on June 7 [+] [!]

Right there is what I'm talking about. A witty comeback devoid of meaning. No one person can know by personal experience what the sex drive of the other sex is outside of research.


Mrs Pterodactyl

I'm very sorry to hear about your personal difficulties. That sounds very painful to have to go through. But in my second post I tried to reiterate this was a statistical average. Ymmv etc and everyone should do what feels most comfortable for them personally.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:02 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's bad form to enter a discussion forum with "Hey! Why are you talking about this! This is no good! Talk about this other thing!"

It's even worse form to justify this behavior with clichés that lack a solid basis in fact.

Don't do these things if you don't want people to get mad at you.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 8:03 PM on June 7, 2013 [8 favorites]


Does he really get to come over here and say all the same weird things about female sexuality that were deleted from the blue

Only up to a point. This needs to not turn into that debate here, either.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 8:03 PM on June 7, 2013


Also, do not make this thread into a discussion/argument about the thing we didn't want folks having a discussion/argument about in the MeFi thread, thanks.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:03 PM on June 7, 2013


"Cleaning the catbox" pairs well with cortex's "morning run through the fuckers list", too.

Tilda Swinton does not take a morning run through the fuckers.

Tilda Swinton takes ... Hah. Heh. Ha. Hahahahahah. Dude, there's so many ways to go with this one, I can't even choose.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 8:03 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


And whatever taz and restless enjoy too. If that's banjo strings, though, that would be great.
posted by boo_radley at 8:04 PM on June 7, 2013


I won't start yet another Meta since this seems to be the month of Meta Hell, but "See Inside" is not an appropriate body text for above the fold.
posted by Justinian at 8:05 PM on June 7, 2013 [21 favorites]


This is again turning into a "none of the things you say are true!" and if I copy and past my sources again I'll be "debating". So I have to be "wrong" again I guess.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:07 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


No one person can know by personal experience what the sex drive of the other sex is outside of research.

What do you mean "the other sex"? I'm saying that the claims you're making about my own gender are incorrect, and my personal experience is perfectly valid because it is my gender we're discussing.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:08 PM on June 7, 2013 [8 favorites]


Okay, this:

And my own source for that claim is my being a woman.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:56 PM on June 7 [+] [!]


Right there is what I'm talking about. A witty comeback devoid of meaning. No one person can know by personal experience what the sex drive of the other sex is outside of research.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 10:02 PM on June 7


You're coming across very poorly here. Very clueless and tone-deaf. What the Empress said is NOT a "witty comeback devoid of meaning."

And this:

Mrs Pterodactyl

I'm very sorry to hear about your personal difficulties. That sounds very painful to have to go through.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 10:02 PM on June 7


I think that's a really weird response to what Mrs Pterodactyl said. She wasn't sharing "personal difficulties" that required your consolation. I think you're getting static here because you don't seem to read people's tone well and you're responding/contributing in ways that feel "off" for the culture of this site.
posted by Unified Theory at 8:08 PM on June 7, 2013 [13 favorites]


Sorry about the see inside I didn't know how to frame it.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:09 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


That does seem to be how you do things.
posted by LogicalDash at 8:10 PM on June 7, 2013 [9 favorites]


I think many of us when we begin at Metafilter usually just sort of lurk around in the beginning. Some people are more about the green, some more about the blue. The level of discourse on the blue (front page) seems a bit higher, and a bit more intellectual in general. Less sort of "well, yeah, whatever". Whereas on the green, answering questions is usually more just a slice of your personal experience rather than a look at a specific topic on a more intellectual level.

I guess I'm trying to say...you- ishrinkmajeans- are maybe sort of reading the blue wrongly, in that your tone is sort of...I don't want to say not appropriate, but it's just sort of "off" somehow. Like mathowie politely said- it's not all 2nd year college majors trying to get their debate on. Is that dismissive? Maybe my tone is wrong. That's why I try to avoid the blue page most of the time!

On preview- my comment is similar to Unified Theory's above.
posted by bquarters at 8:13 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


Which is a false premise because women have different sex drives than men.

We don't, you know.

And my own source for that claim is my being a woman.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:56 PM on June 7 [+] [!]


The only way to, by personal experience, know that women have the same sex drive as a man is to have been both a man and a woman. Appealing to being a woman to contradict my statement that men and women have different sex drives doesn't make sense. This can only be known in the aggregate by statistical or biological research.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:13 PM on June 7, 2013 [8 favorites]


Maybe give a member this new a little benefit of the doubt on the trolling accusations, eh?
posted by Drinky Die at 8:13 PM on June 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


Um, thanks, but I'm good now! I do appreciate the sympathy, but I wasn't looking for it. I was trying to point out that repeating things that "everyone knows" can be unhelpful and that context really matters; just because something is true (which I genuinely don't know is the case here) doesn't mean that saying it is helpful or appropriate. Sometimes it's good to be aware that you think you're just stating a basic fact and other people might hear it as piling on based on issues they've had in the past. Does that make sense? It is generally good practice to think about your audience and be aware of not only what you are saying but what other people are hearing.

Another thing -- I read this:

But in my second post I tried to reiterate this was a statistical average. Ymmv etc and everyone should do what feels most comfortable for them personally.

And I thought "You know what? S/he's right. I might be universalizing my experience and that's not reasonable." I honestly don't know if I am; the issue here is not whether either of us is right, it's that this is a discussion (not the same as a debate) and some of us are willing to say "oh, huh, maybe I'm wrong." You don't seem to be willing to say that; you might be wrong, you might not, but it feels like you're not having a good faith discussion because instead of recognizing what other people say -- or even really that they're saying something -- you back up your own point.

I should go to bed soon but I hope this is helpful and (hopefully) not patronizing; it can be super hard to find that line and if I missed it I'm sorry.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 8:16 PM on June 7, 2013 [7 favorites]


With mrs pterodactyl I was referencing her reply to my first comment in the masturbation thread. I'm sorry if that wasn't clear.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:17 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


Oh, in case it wasn't clear, "Um, thanks, but I'm good now!" relates to I'm very sorry to hear about your personal difficulties. I appreciate the thought (not sarcastic, just shy and awkward).

Now I'm done talking.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 8:19 PM on June 7, 2013


The only way to, by personal experience, know that women have the same sex drive as a man is to have been both a man and a woman. Appealing to being a woman to contradict my statement that men and women have different sex drives doesn't make sense.

No, what doesn't make sense is you stubbornly insisting that I have a low sex drive despite my personal testimony on the matter, simply because I'm a woman and Wikipedia says that's the way it is for women.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:19 PM on June 7, 2013 [5 favorites]


This is again turning into a "none of the things you say are true!" and if I copy and past my sources again I'll be "debating". So I have to be "wrong" again I guess.

If you're assuming that choosing not to fight is equivalent to admitting defeat, that provides a pretty strong motivation to fight every fight, a behavior that will not serve you well here.
posted by LogicalDash at 8:19 PM on June 7, 2013 [19 favorites]


I'm personally OK with the fact assumption that, generally speaking, women who are interested in having sex with anyone can achieve their goal more easily than a man who wants the same... For example, in a club or bar setting.

That doesn't necessarily mean its easier for a woman to partner up with someone she actually likes, however.

Then again, since for the sake of argument, we're removing standards from the equation, the point could be made that it is easier for a man to have sex with a woman (provided you have a few hundred dollars) by visiting Craigslist.

The libido thing? It's too subjective to state anything resembling facts over.

I didn't see what was deleted, nor have I noticed an emerging pattern from ishrinkmajeans regarding contrarian comments (though on preview.... Let it go.... Please let it go...)

They made a comment, and three people quoted and immediately disagreed with this comment. That probably would be where I would've left it, but obviously there is perhaps a learning curve for what's going to instill a shitstorm or not.

That said, people who have been around for a bit bashing a newer user and flamebaiting in this MeTa doesn't sit well with me either. There's a road, and it's above the one being travelled by some commenters here.

I think there's something someone once said about doing something and moving on? But I can't quite remember what it is....
posted by Debaser626 at 8:19 PM on June 7, 2013 [4 favorites]


if I copy and past my sources again

Part of the problem is the kinds of things you're choosing to call "sources" and what seems like a lack of experience, or a narrow frame of reference, for evaluating them. Saying "look up promiscuity and sociosexuality on wikipedia for reference" doesn't really count as citing a source; (a) they are only secondary sources, and often poorly developed, uneven, and slanted ones at that, and (b) you don't say what, specifically, within those articles you are citing as your evidence. The command "go read about it" is not a citation.

MetaFilter as a community has a long history of dealing with the construction of sexuality in very thoughtful, critical, and serious ways that go beyond many easily accessed, popular sources and conventional wisdoms. Dropping in a couple of offhand mentions and then resting on laurels as if you've just closed a lengthy and conclusive argument will not be successful on this site, in general. Especially when the points of view presented are so weak and unsupported. It's a fairly reliable prediction that such things will be challenged, eagerly and often.

And because such casual, facile observations also have a history of being used in oppressive and restrictive projects, many people will react to them with more than simply an intellectual/scientific response, but read into them a more visceral, personal intent than you might mean. It's reasonable for them to think hm, it seems possible that you might mean those things to be part of a larger project of assigning strict gender roles and expectations to men and women, trying to limit the ranges of acceptable expression of sexuality for each gender, or putting down individuals who might be at variance with conventional norms and promote inaccurate stereotyping.

You might not be doing those things, but the way you're writing comments now, it seems really reasonable to people that you might be. That's why you're drawing those reactions.
posted by Miko at 8:19 PM on June 7, 2013 [106 favorites]


Does he really get to come over here and say all the same weird things about female sexuality that were deleted from the blue

Only up to a point. This needs to not turn into that debate here, either.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 8:03 PM on June 7 [+] [!]


I spent 15 minutes on my phone typing in my credible sources for what I see as obvious but whatever. Since nomad has threatened to delete posts in this thread I'm not going to bother putting it up again so you'll just have to take my word for it Miko.

If its any consolation I'm a pretty strident defender of doing whatever floats your boat - talking about averages is not a condemnation of anybody.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:26 PM on June 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


FFS. Shut this down and give clueless-boy a week off.
posted by Curious Artificer at 8:28 PM on June 7, 2013 [24 favorites]


you'll just have to take my word for it Miko.

No, I don't. Nobody does. This may not be the place for that debate, but as long as you float out unsupported opinions that go perpendicular to people's lived experience and scholarly understanding, it's fair to expect that you'll be called to support your argument in those threads where that is legimitately the subject of discussion.
posted by Miko at 8:28 PM on June 7, 2013 [57 favorites]


I wish we could have debated the topic Miko.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:30 PM on June 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


Yeah, not only did you expect everyone to take your assertions for granted, but you asserted them in a thread where they were irrelevant.

What Curious Artificer said.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 8:32 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


If you are going to enjoy MetaFilter, you'll need to make peace with the idea that other people will believe you're wrong. This isn't a statement about whether you are wrong in this instance or whether you will be wrong in future instances. It's a simple fact of participating on the Internet, and this forum in particular. You need to be able to exhale, shrug, and move on to the next thing in your life.

Have you seen this comic? It's funny because it's true, and insightful. Don't be that guy. Be the guy who goes to bed.
posted by cribcage at 8:34 PM on June 7, 2013 [6 favorites]


Look, ishrinkmajeans - why are you having this conversation? I mean, why did you post this post in Metatalk? Because it's becoming increasingly clear that you did it for the wrong reasons. Metatalk is for discussing site policy and the implications thereof. But you're using this post to try to prove a point that you didn't get to prove in the original thread because it was a derail. That's not really cool.

One weird thing about Metafilter that can be kind of annoying and difficult to get used to at first is the specific focused nature of discussion here. You can't just wander into any thread and have any debate. Metatalk (as I said) is about site policy, and the threads are for talk about the topic of the threads. This is annoying because sometimes you want to talk about a thing, but I think part of Metafilter's specific deal is learning that it's okay not to talk about something, even if you feel like you have something to say. It's okay to let that go. Not always easy, I know, but it's often healthy and worthwhile.

In the interest of returning this thread to the point: unless the main Metafilter thread we're talking about has been trimmed a lot, I don't think anyone actually insulted you. Saying you don't have sources or that you are wrong is not an insult. These are just things people say in a discussion; and if we read those things as insults then discussion generally becomes very difficult. (But, as I said, maybe some insults were deleted - I don't know.)
posted by koeselitz at 8:35 PM on June 7, 2013 [9 favorites]




Yeah, not only did you expect everyone to take your assertions for granted, but you asserted them in a thread where they were irrelevant.

What Curious Artificer said.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 8:32 PM on June 7 [+] [!]




What am I supposed to do? I can't post my evidence or restless nomad will delete it. And most people's complaint is that what I said was wrong or offended them. But it's an established fact. It just is - and that will have to be enough if I'm not allowed to show why. So I get to be the irrational bad guy.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:37 PM on June 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


Memail it.
posted by nathancaswell at 8:39 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

What am I supposed to do?
You don't have to do anything. Everything's cool here, man.

But maybe there's something you hope to accomplish? What is it??
posted by chrchr at 8:39 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


Since nomad has threatened to delete posts in this thread I'm not going to bother putting it up again so you'll just have to take my word for it Miko.

Climb off your cross. You are not being victimised. You are being asked to play by clearly established rules.

What am I supposed to do? I can't post my evidence or restless nomad will delete it.


If you think it's so great, make your own post. Don't set up your axe-grinding shop in a thread that's only tangentially related.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 8:40 PM on June 7, 2013 [9 favorites]


I made this post because this was posted


Look up promiscuity and sociosexuality on wikipedia for reference.

How about you look up "dopey made up bullshit perpetuated by the patriarchy" anywhere on the internets, bro.
posted by elizardbits at 4:51 PM on June 7 [30 favorites +] [Flagged]


And I thought that was terrible and so I spent 20 minutes onmy phone compiling the relevant sources and the restless nomad deleted my post.

So snark rules the day and reasoned logic is stifled. I have been seething mad for over an hour now.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:41 PM on June 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans: "What am I supposed to do? I can't post my evidence or restless nomad will delete it."

Let it go. It's a topic for another day, not today. I know sometimes that feels anticlimactic, but it will be okay.

"And most people's complaint is that what I said was wrong or offended them. But it's an established fact. It just is - and that will have to be enough if I'm not allowed to show why. So I get to be the irrational bad guy."

Other people are going to think what they think. Sometimes there's nothing you can do about that. I have said many, many things on this website that offended people or inspired them to state emphatically that I was wrong. Sometimes you just have to accept that people are going to feel the way they feel.
posted by koeselitz at 8:41 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


Is it a derail to discuss the potential size and scope of a problem in a thread about an effort designed to address that problem?
posted by Drinky Die at 8:42 PM on June 7, 2013 [5 favorites]


And most people's complaint is that what I said was wrong or offended them. But it's an established fact.

And your "proof" of this "established fact", people have observed, was a suggestion to "look up promiscuity and sociosexuality on Wikipedia".

Suggesting people look things up on Wikipedia isn't "debating", it's "saying something you think, getting called on it, and then flailing to find something that makes you right".

Miko probably would have enjoyed a debate, but what you're doing isn't "debating".
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:43 PM on June 7, 2013 [5 favorites]


I have been seething mad for over an hour now.

Because some strangers disagreed with you on the internet? Think about that for a second.

If you are going to enjoy MetaFilter, you'll need to make peace with the idea that other people will believe you're wrong.

This is excellent advice.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 8:43 PM on June 7, 2013 [37 favorites]


DUDE, JUST BECAUSE YOU READ A WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE THAT DOESN'T MEAN YOU KNOW MORE ABOUT WOMEN THAN WOMEN THEMSELVES, OKAY DUDE? IS THAT SO HARD TO UNDERSTAND?
posted by neroli at 8:44 PM on June 7, 2013 [40 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans: "I can't post my evidence or restless nomad will delete it."

The last thing you posted in this thread was an infographic with a happy clitoris on it. Your zeal for debate is interesting, but please consider what you use as sources.

ishrinkmajeans: "
So snark rules the day and reasoned logic is stifled. I have been seething mad for over an hour now.
"

No, that's not logic. That's not logic at all.Telling somebody to look up something on wikipedia and then claim you're making an argument is not logic. It is something else. It is not even an infographic with a happy clitoris on it.
posted by boo_radley at 8:44 PM on June 7, 2013 [7 favorites]


I am not allowed to post my evidence that restless nomad deleted empress you'll just have to take it on faith that I had more arguments than just Wikipedia
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:45 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


Empress, he's saying he had an "established fact" comment beyond the "Wikipedia it" comment but after he compiled his sources or whatever and posted it it was deleted for continuing the derail, but elizardbits' comment stood. That is essentially the issue here, correct?
posted by nathancaswell at 8:46 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


If you would like, I would be happy to receive your evidence in email or metafilter mail (see my profile).
posted by boo_radley at 8:46 PM on June 7, 2013


"evidence" [snort]
posted by neroli at 8:46 PM on June 7, 2013


Boo tad key the info graphic is from the original article that I was critiquing. Please go read that.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:47 PM on June 7, 2013


* checks watch *

I'm giving this another 15 minutes, twenty tops. Who's taking?
posted by Curious Artificer at 8:47 PM on June 7, 2013


I'd be curious to see this evidence via MeMail, too.
posted by Miko at 8:47 PM on June 7, 2013


Yes that is it Nathan.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:47 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


ishrinkmajeans: "And I thought that was terrible and so I spent 20 minutes onmy phone compiling the relevant sources and the restless nomad deleted my post. So snark rules the day and reasoned logic is stifled. I have been seething mad for over an hour now."

I can totally understand the feeling, but (a) the last comment on a subject most definitely does not "rule the day," and (b) you really have to let it go, because there are ten billion maddening things on the Internet and if you take them all to heart they'll drive you mad. Somebody said something you disagree with, something you feel paints your views in a bad light. That's okay. People will think and feel what they think and feel. You are not responsible for correcting them, and their thoughts and feelings don't get to define who you are or how you feel if you don't want to let them.

Honestly, I get the intensity with which you really, truly want to prove that elizardbits is wrong and that your argument is valid, but that is a thing you have to let go of, and you're going to have to find peace on that.
posted by koeselitz at 8:47 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


you'll just have to take it on faith that I had more arguments than just Wikipedia

But you didn't. You copied a line from a wikipedia article and then the line mentioning the sources. You didn't even quote from the sources directly. You seem to be under the impression that if peer-reviewed articles exist and are cited in an article that seems to support your point, that that constitutes evidence. It doesn't, at least not in the way that people are asking for.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 8:48 PM on June 7, 2013 [25 favorites]


I used to LOVE flameout baiting, maybe I'm getting old?
posted by nathancaswell at 8:48 PM on June 7, 2013 [7 favorites]


Witty put-downs are generally okay on the blue, and name calling is not. What more did you want from this meTa?

I don't know how long you lurked and read before you joined. Might need to do so for a little longer. This place isn't rocket science, but it has its nuances and quirks and customs. Being a new person who acts like they A) are familiar with them and B) at least pretends to give a shit about them will serve you fairly well. This kind of meTa will not, since it will become - has become - a place where people can tell you that they've taken note of your presence and here's why and how it's problematic. That's probably not what you were aiming for. Hence, moar lurking.
posted by rtha at 8:48 PM on June 7, 2013 [4 favorites]


We'll never know because you deleted my post and let the patriarchy post stand which was pure slander.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 8:50 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


If you think of that as "slander," I shudder to think of the feelings you'll have to go through when you discover the rest of the Internet. Seriously, let it go. It was one person's opinion. Don't let it define you or your interaction here.
posted by koeselitz at 8:51 PM on June 7, 2013 [10 favorites]


And now you see the injustice inherent in the system.
posted by nathancaswell at 8:52 PM on June 7, 2013 [44 favorites]


We'll never know because you deleted my post and let the patriarchy post stand which was pure slander.

Are you even reading the responses here, or are you just sitting at home screaming 'I'M RIGHT I'M RIGHT I'M RIGHT I'M RIGHT I'M RIGHT I'M RIGHT'?
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 8:52 PM on June 7, 2013 [33 favorites]


We'll never know because you deleted my post and let the patriarchy post stand which was pure slander.

It was not slander. Slander has to be directed at a person. elizardbits's comment was directed at a cliché she has probably heard at least ninety gajillion times, not at you.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 8:52 PM on June 7, 2013 [18 favorites]


I recommend looser pants.
posted by maryr at 8:53 PM on June 7, 2013 [20 favorites]


That comment really doesn't meet the four basic conditions for slander, at all. It's not even about you recognizably, which is the first criterion.
posted by Miko at 8:53 PM on June 7, 2013 [11 favorites]


Healthier all around.
posted by maryr at 8:53 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


We'll never know because you deleted my post and let the patriarchy post stand which was pure slander.

I know. I can see deleted comments. I am not making this up. I understand that you're angry about this, but comments - and posts, for that matter - get deleted here all the time. It's not personal, and it's not a character judgment. To be perfectly honest, all the character judgments on this site come from the stuff we don't delete (but probably should have.)
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 8:53 PM on June 7, 2013 [11 favorites]


Colin, is it you
posted by whyareyouatriangle at 8:55 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


I know. I can see deleted comments. I am not making this up.

'I've seen things that you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships comments on fire off the belt of Orion best of MeFi...'
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 8:57 PM on June 7, 2013 [13 favorites]


Restless nomad is basically like Rowdy Roddy Piper in They Live.
posted by nathancaswell at 8:59 PM on June 7, 2013 [13 favorites]


Just to be clear, this is about the entire thing being a total derail, not the quality of sourcing, right? We're not suggesting someone jump into the thread with primary sources to reboot the fight about median boner levels.
posted by 0xFCAF at 9:04 PM on June 7, 2013 [5 favorites]


Also, your metatalk "see also" is analogous to the presumptuous attitude you exhibit in telling your reader to go read X and Y on wikipedia: the onus is on you and only you to make the argument and explicitly provide citations and sources where warranted.

(ALL KNOWLEDGE BEGINS FROM EXPERIENCE DON'T BELIEVE ME GO READ KANT'S CRITIQUE OF PURE REASON)
posted by whyareyouatriangle at 9:04 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


Just to be clear, this is about the entire thing being a total derail, not the quality of sourcing, right? We're not suggesting someone jump into the thread with primary sources to reboot the fight about median boner levels.

Well, my thing is about that. ishrinkmajeans has a different thing.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 9:06 PM on June 7, 2013 [5 favorites]


Median Boner Levels would be a great name for a nerd band.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 9:08 PM on June 7, 2013 [14 favorites]


"An argument isn't just contradiction."
"It can be."
"No it can't. An argument is a connected series of statements intended to establish a proposition."
"No it isn't."
"Yes it is! It's not just contradiction."
"Look, if I argue with you, I must take up a contrary position."
"Yes, but that's not just saying 'No it isn't.'"
"Yes it is!"
"No it isn't!"
"Yes it is!"
"Argument is an intellectual process. Contradiction is just the automatic gainsaying of any statement the other person makes."
"... No it isn't."
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:09 PM on June 7, 2013 [18 favorites]


Guys don't you know i shrink ma jeans is Tao Lin and it's his Brand New Day?
posted by grobstein at 9:10 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


So, to sum up:

1. Don't derail posts.
2. Criticism of your comments or your argument is not a a personal insult or slander. If you think it is, flag it and move on.
3. Wikipedia is a useful tool, but it's not evidence.
4. If you want to make a case for your argument, don't expect other people to do the work.
5. It would be structurally pleasing to have a fifth point, but I don't.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 9:11 PM on June 7, 2013 [29 favorites]


Oh wait, I have a fifth point!

5. You don't need to convince anyone; you can't 'win' a thread and there are no prizes for having the last word.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 9:12 PM on June 7, 2013 [25 favorites]


6. SILENCED ALL MY LIFE
posted by scody at 9:13 PM on June 7, 2013 [58 favorites]


We'll never know because you deleted my post and let the patriarchy post stand which was pure slander.

That thing I'm quoting right there? That's a comment you made, not a post. This meTa you made? It's a post. Not everyone uses those completely consistently, but there is a difference and mixing them up can make for confusion.

So. Are you bitching about a comment you made that was deleted, while a comment allegedly slandering you was allowed to stand (and it's polite to link to the thing you are bitching about, also it's custom here), or did you make an fpp that got deleted, or what.
posted by rtha at 9:13 PM on June 7, 2013


6. Don't let a silly website fill you with seething rage.
posted by Roger Dodger at 9:13 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


Just to be clear, this is about the entire thing being a total derail, not the quality of sourcing, right? We're not suggesting someone jump into the thread with primary sources to reboot the fight about median boner levels.

Well, my thing is about that. ishrinkmajeans has a different thing.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 9:06 PM on June 7 [+] [!]

I am incensed you deleted a perfectly cogent argument but I think attacking the premise of a post is still perfectly reasonable.

"median boner levels" is a childish and juvenile way of othering my argument which is my entire point about catchy witticisms and put downs. Shame on you.

Also I know it isn't technically slander but it still feels like an approximation thereof and made me mad.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:15 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


TaoDreams01ofShrunkenJeansinSixColors: Silenced All My Life edition.
posted by Unified Theory at 9:15 PM on June 7, 2013 [12 favorites]


"Argument is an intellectual process. Contradiction is just the automatic gainsaying of any statement the other person makes."
"... No it isn't."
posted by DevilsAdvocate

eponysterical
posted by whyareyouatriangle at 9:15 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


If it seems self-evident to you, yet people seem to disagree for no explicable reason, usually it's better to go back and examine their point of view and your assumptions rather than attempt to "win" an argument as quickly as possible.

It's also less frustrating, and sometimes, you'll come out "on top", as it where, in your own investigations. But through this research you will find better supporting evidence and by empathizing, find a better way to assert it without stepping all over people unintentionally.
posted by smidgen at 9:16 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


"So snark rules the day and reasoned logic is stifled. I have been seething mad for over an hour now."

The system works!
posted by klangklangston at 9:16 PM on June 7, 2013 [29 favorites]


7. Sometimes it *is* you.
posted by h00py at 9:17 PM on June 7, 2013 [6 favorites]


I am incensed you deleted a perfectly cogent argument but I think attacking the premise of a post is still perfectly reasonable.

I think you may also need to look up what 'cogent' means. Perhaps also 'premise'.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 9:17 PM on June 7, 2013 [15 favorites]


"median boner levels" is a childish and juvenile way of othering my argument which is my entire point about catchy witticisms and put downs. Shame on you.

Please learn what "othering" actually means, lest someone with more patience than I have smack you down, but hard, for applying it to a shoddy argument.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 9:17 PM on June 7, 2013 [36 favorites]


"So snark rules the day and reasoned logic is stifled. I have been seething mad for over an hour now."

The system works!
posted by klangklangston at 9:16 PM on June 7 [+] [!]

Ok you made me laugh.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:18 PM on June 7, 2013 [7 favorites]


ISMJ, I emailed the mods in your favor because I thought letting the snark stand while not allowing replies on account of 'derail' was bad form. A fun euphemism for libido is not my attempt to other you. This is what burning up any remaining good will looks like.
posted by 0xFCAF at 9:18 PM on June 7, 2013 [8 favorites]


We'll never know because you deleted my post and let the patriarchy post stand which was pure slander.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 22:50 on June 7 [+] [!]


I can recommend many fine pieces of excavation and earthmoving equipment if your shovel proves inadequate.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:18 PM on June 7, 2013 [14 favorites]


Has anyone actually received the deleted comment via MeMail?
posted by lalex at 9:19 PM on June 7, 2013


MetaTalk: it isn't technically slander but it still feels like an approximation thereof
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:23 PM on June 7, 2013 [4 favorites]


Hmmm 0x maybe my blunderbuss needs fine tuning I apologize. The comment seemed to be comparing me to the stereotype of a "patriarchal man" which would then allow my argument to be dismissed not on it's merits but as an ad hominem. A misattribution for a grade 3 snark attack. I clearly didn't realize you didn't mean it that way and may be suffering fromput down paranoia. I've been mad and getting irrational. Boop.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:23 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


What argument? What merits?

Boop? What even the fuck?
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 9:25 PM on June 7, 2013 [8 favorites]


Rustic go read my previous comment then 0xs and then my next one. Boop cause I'm tired.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:26 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


Hey ishrinkmajeans. It seems like you are working hard to keep up with a fast-moving thread via smartphone. I am getting the impression that you've missed that the main thrust of the case against you here is not "you're wrong" but rather "you're having the wrong argument, in the wrong place." I understand that you're mad, but I really think it would be in your best interests as a user of the site to take the night off and maybe re-visit the thread tomorrow with a cooler head, more time, and a bigger screen.
posted by agentofselection at 9:27 PM on June 7, 2013 [9 favorites]


Good deal

I'm out. Jean grondins intro to metaphysics is more interesting anyway.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:29 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


Jean grondins intro to metaphysics is more interesting anyway.

Uh huh. Because that's not petulant and childish AT ALL.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 9:33 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


Wait, that worked? Do I have a superpower?
posted by agentofselection at 9:33 PM on June 7, 2013 [63 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans: "I am incensed you deleted a perfectly cogent argument but I think attacking the premise of a post is still perfectly reasonable. "

I think your anger is kind of blinding you to the discussion about this central point. The central point is: why is the discussion of men's vs women's libidos a derail? restless_nomad gave a pretty good answer to this question above:

restless_nomad: "And I deleted it because whether women's libidos are higher or lower than men's is completely irrelevant to the thread. And insisting on that argument reads very much like an insistence on making the conversation about men, which is an often-unconscious but still very much sexist impulse that is likely to piss a lot of people off."

Please try to set aside your profound annoyance at being associated with "sexist impulses" and try to see the argument here. The thread is about women's libidos. It is not about men's libidos. Initiating a conversation about men's libidos in the thread assumes that women's libidos are inherently tied to men's libidos. At best, it assumes that all women are heterosexual and therefore their libidos are regulated by how often they can or cannot have sex with men. Your comments clearly carried that assumption, didn't they?

Now: I can totally understand how it's easy to make that assumption. I'm a guy who likes women, so I can see that it's natural. But can you see how some women - especially lesbian women - might find that a tad off putting? And can you see how even straight women might be a bit annoyed at being told that it's relatively easy for them to have sex if they want to? My experience is that every human struggles to have the sex they want to have, and women are no different. Telling them it's easy for them is not likely to be well-received.

More to the point: your entire argument defined women's sexuality in relation to men's sexuality. That was a derail because women's sexuality is emphatically not defined by the sexuality of men any more than the sexuality of men is defined by the sexuality of women. That's proven not only by the fact that there are gay men and women in the world but by the fact that sexuality seems to be a thing in itself, apart from its relationship to anything else.
posted by koeselitz at 9:33 PM on June 7, 2013 [64 favorites]


So, I've noticed your comments too. To me, it seems like you're engaging in the Cargo Cult School of Argumentation. You know what a high-level academic argument LOOKS like, with primary sources and a logical structure, but you don't know how to actually judge the content of those sources, or how to put together a logically structured argument where you provide support for your assertions and one point leads to the next and so on. You also are doing this thing where you don't seem to be actually reading other people's comments, but instead scanning them for a jumping-off point for your next argument -- analogous to people who, in conversation, spend the time when the other person is talking thinking up their next great point to make instead of listening. This puts you constantly slightly out of sync in this discussion, because you're not discussing -- you're monologuing with interruptions.

Your "logical arguments" aren't; they're strings of assertions and assumptions that you're supporting with secondary sources and secondary citations. When you pick primary sources, you are often picking low-quality ones, but not listening to people who explain why your sources are low quality. (That whole bizarre commentary in the philosophy harassment thread where you kept saying, "I know the law says X, but I don't agree with it" and people kept telling you THE LAW DOESN'T SAY X, and you did not appear able to understand what people were saying to you and couldn't even google up what the law said, which is super-easy to find.) You don't even seem to know the difference between a fact and an assertion, since you keep insisting assertions are facts.

You structure your post so it sort-of looks and sounds like an argument, using the same sorts of language and framing you've seen on other, well-received arguments, and pretty it up with some sources of dubious quality, and expect other people to respect it. But then instead of listening and engaging when people say, "Wait, you're making an assumption here," you get upset (seething, even!) and start shouting I MADE A LOGICAL ARGUMENT WHY IS IT NOT WORKING YOU MUST ALL BE BAD PEOPLE! Your arguments have no inside parts. They have no content. They look sort-of like arguments, but they are empty.

Your argument's not working because it's a Cargo Cult Argument. No airplanes are going to land there. You have not built an airport. You have built something that looks sort-of like an airport, but you have missed all the parts that make it an actual airport and achieved only the cosmetic semblance of an airport.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:34 PM on June 7, 2013 [250 favorites]


It's easier if you see Metafilter as not a debate. You don't try to convince anyone that their opinion is wrong and yours is right.

You say what your opinion is. Other people say what theirs is. If you're interested in theirs, maybe you ask some questions. If you think they're wrong, maybe you say so, and say why. If they get it, cool. If not, whatev.

If they critique your opinion, first try to understand what they are saying.

What I'm saying is, you've been here a short time, and already I associate your user name with being kind of predictably contrarian, and aggressively take-on-all-comers to-the-death about it.

Metafilter culture (as much as it can be generalized, which it can't) tends more toward "Well, that's just, like, your opinion, man" style rather than "NO! NO! YOU'RE WRONG! I CAN PROVE IT!"*
posted by ctmf at 9:38 PM on June 7, 2013 [12 favorites]


*certain user/topic combinations excepted
posted by ctmf at 9:41 PM on June 7, 2013


You have not built an airport.

If I were a worse person or a drunker one I would do the Metafilter: [tagline] thing but I'm neither (at the moment) so I will just say that I love this and it made me laugh.
posted by rtha at 9:44 PM on June 7, 2013 [9 favorites]


There is no way this user isn't a troll. No way.

Why is this thread still open?
posted by dobbs at 9:48 PM on June 7, 2013 [4 favorites]


ctmf: "Metafilter culture (as much as it can be generalized, which it can't) tends more toward "Well, that's just, like, your opinion, man" style rather than "NO! NO! YOU'RE WRONG! I CAN PROVE IT!"*"

Or to paraphrase a wise man, sometimes you need to look at what you are doing with your night, and say, "Fuck it, Dude, let's go bowling."
posted by Elementary Penguin at 9:49 PM on June 7, 2013 [4 favorites]


You have not built an airport.

Are you saying he didn't build it, rtha?
posted by cgc373 at 9:50 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


Why is this thread still open?

I guess so people can keep calling the person who voluntarily left the thread childish and petulant?
posted by Drinky Die at 9:52 PM on June 7, 2013 [7 favorites]


You have not built an airport.

No, but unplugged one and plugged it back in and that seemed to solve the problem.
posted by maryr at 10:00 PM on June 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


I'm not an airport but I play one on the internet.
posted by iamabot at 10:01 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


You have not built an airport.

so… does the plane take off?
posted by whyareyouatriangle at 10:09 PM on June 7, 2013 [5 favorites]


I guess so people can keep calling the person who voluntarily left the thread childish and petulant?

To clarify; I didn't mean their leaving was petulant. It was the 'WELL THIS PLACE IS BORING ANYWAY' which I considered to be petulant.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 10:10 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


Can we just shut down Metatalk every Friday at noon PST?
posted by shakespeherian at 10:11 PM on June 7, 2013 [17 favorites]


To clarify; I didn't mean their leaving was petulant. It was the 'WELL THIS PLACE IS BORING ANYWAY' which I considered to be petulant.

Do you REALLY think this thread is more interesting than basic metaphysics?
posted by Drinky Die at 10:17 PM on June 7, 2013


Yes.
posted by h00py at 10:18 PM on June 7, 2013 [8 favorites]


(Seriously that book looks pretty good, gonna see if the library has it.)
posted by Drinky Die at 10:20 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


That person, understanding metaphysics
posted by Unified Theory at 10:26 PM on June 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


It helped me to internalize the fact that this site is for the reader not the writer.
Deletions make it better for the reader.
posted by notned at 10:30 PM on June 7, 2013 [8 favorites]


Man, "don't post mad" is like rule number one of making metafilter run smoothly. If you are truly seethingly upset over something that happened here, go do something else until you are no longer seethingly upset. I have failed to follow this advice many times, and I always have regretted it.
posted by KathrynT at 10:32 PM on June 7, 2013 [40 favorites]


I got a memail from jeans, I invited him to post it here. He contacted me directly because he doesn't want to look like he's trying to bicker or point-score in the thread, but it was a pretty thoughtful response and I said I thought he should post it here.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 10:34 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


...a bunch of upvotes.

Might the word 'upvotes' be a clue as to why ishrinkmajeans seems to misunderstand what a MetaFilter thread actually is, and an explanation for the pedantry-without-facts 'WikiPedia academic' mode of communication? That's certainly the way folk tend to talk in the more popular sections of that site where 'upvotes' are a thing.

Also, my brain absolutely insists on singing the word 'ishrinkmajeans' to the tune of Willow Smith's Whip My Hair (Back And Forth) - a wee spurt of pop joy at the close of every comment!
posted by jack_mo at 10:37 PM on June 7, 2013 [10 favorites]


Ok this last one and then in throwing my phone out the window and then burning my house down



I am sending you this response. Rather than score points with it in a thread you can read this or not, but your comment compelled me to write.

~

I could at first blush when making any statement go straight to JSTOR and start digging through scholarly articles and finding statements of the highest academic quality. But I don't know first hand which arguments of mine will be controversial. I make assumptions because I assume some things are obvious, to be totally frank. So when someone says "that doesn't make sense" I go to wikipedia hoping that will solve the matter. And then when people go "but that's wikipedia!" then I go to sources on wikipedia. And if someone then goes "but that's just one source!" I will find multiple sources and so on. I keep trying to bring people to the truth slowly but surely. But in most of these arguments there is evidence but no definitive proof. Someone can always nitpick. If that is the reason I have a cargo cult of argumentation, that my arguments are sometimes second hand or weak at first, that at first blush I'm not digging through the Harvard Library archives, that seems a little harsh.

As far as the law argument is concerned my statement was "I think there should be intent too." And someone said "you're wrong because that's not what the law says." And I said, albeit sarcastically (to my discredit), "so what does the law say? (as I am not a lawyer)." And someone said "yeah intent doesn't matter." So my statement was "well I don't agree with that but the guy should be fired because he broke the law". I admitted that I didn't like it but that I was wrong. I don't know what you want from that.

As far as not responding to posts that aren't in flow with the thread, I am guilty of that. When someone says "you're wrong because you're a fascist/idiot/patriarch/you smell" I don't really let it go. If someone says I am wrong because the sky is green I am compelled to say "no actually the sky is blue".

And I try never to put anyone down. Or snark about how illogical their reasoning is. It's just an epically shitty dismissal of them as a person. If my arguments "sort of look like arguments" but are empty at least I'm trying most of the time.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 10:37 PM on June 7, 2013 [5 favorites]



And I try never to put anyone down. Or snark about how illogical their reasoning is. It's just an epically shitty dismissal of them as a person.


PROTIP: insinuating that people disagreeing with you are making assertions on par with "the sky is green" = not trying very hard.
posted by juv3nal at 10:42 PM on June 7, 2013 [6 favorites]


I think KathrynT's comment should be put next to the comment box.
posted by pompomtom at 10:42 PM on June 7, 2013 [4 favorites]


Nobody actually called you a fascist, an idiot, or a patriarch. Your ARGUMENT was called patriarchal. It's probably a really good idea for you to separate your identity from your argument or you're going to spend your whole life getting super pissed off at people for insulting you when they've done no such thing.
posted by palomar at 10:47 PM on June 7, 2013 [21 favorites]


Your ARGUMENT was called patriarchal.

And also dopey made up bullshit. Metafilter notes a significant distinction between posting that someone is saying something that is dopey made up bullshit and calling them a dope who makes up bullshit, but it's not entirely intuitive to new users. It's one of those areas where it is okay to let people get angry about at first until they catch on to the culture more.
posted by Drinky Die at 11:07 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


I am not sure what your deal is OP but rather than go to Wikipedia I suggest you do a Google search restricted to .edu domains. Example, "gender sex issues" site:.edu

That was not the best search string, just something to give you an idea.
posted by mlis at 11:09 PM on June 7, 2013 [3 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans: "I make assumptions because I assume some things are obvious, to be totally frank. So when someone says 'that doesn't make sense' I go to wikipedia hoping that will solve the matter. And then when people go 'but that's wikipedia!' then I go to sources on wikipedia. And if someone then goes 'but that's just one source!' I will find multiple sources and so on. I keep trying to bring people to the truth slowly but surely."

This is around the moment when, if I were in your place, I would begin to question my initial assumption that the truth is obvious; and in that case it would seem that the project of "trying to bring people to the truth" should be postponed in order to begin the project of trying to discover what the truth about the subject actually is by talking about it with people.

"As far as not responding to posts that aren't in flow with the thread, I am guilty of that. When someone says 'you're wrong because you're a fascist/idiot/patriarch/you smell' I don't really let it go. If someone says I am wrong because the sky is green I am compelled to say 'no actually the sky is blue'."

palomar mentioned this distinction above; however, I want to say: I understand it's not an easy one, but it's very important. When someone like elizardbits in that thread says something to the effect of "that's a standard argument that ends up propping up the patriarchy," it is absolutely essential to note that she's criticizing your argument, however bluntly, and not criticizing you yourself. It's not easy because, when someone says something like that, it's natural to feel as though they're attacking us even though they're not. But the only way for human beings to have transcendent conversations about important things is for us to let go of our identitification with the arguments we make. We are not our claims or our evidence or the things we say or the arguments we present. We are separate from those things, and when someone says that an argument is wrong, they aren't saying it about us.

I actually feel like this is connected to the dynamic you described in the bit I quoted above. The way you describe it, you say something that seems totally obvious to you, and other people disagree. So you go off in search of evidence to prove that the thing that seemed obvious to you is actually true. It's clear that this is a little backwards, right? - evidence should precede certainty; you shouldn't have to go looking for it after the fact. But because you've identified yourself personally with the argument you made, you feel compelled to seek out some validation for the argument. But: it's okay to realize that something that seemed obvious actually isn't. There was no obligation on you to come up with any evidence.

I hope this doesn't seem too much like I'm trying to analyze you or something here; honestly I'm noting this mostly because I do this all the time and I'm trying to work on fixing the dynamic within myself. I have a real tendency on Metafilter to get a bit het up and take things personally and get angry about a subject and take it too far. Just know that it's a common thing. But we're all friends here, and I've found there's actually a kind of real pleasure in having friends reveal to me that things I thought were obvious are actually anything but.
posted by koeselitz at 11:10 PM on June 7, 2013 [31 favorites]


Example, "gender sex issues" site:.edu

Good tip.

I'd use 'inurl:' rather than 'site:' to include edu sites outside the US.
posted by pompomtom at 11:19 PM on June 7, 2013 [11 favorites]


I must be getting old, because I used to love watching these flameouts unfold into the inevitable flouncing out with or without the door hitting someone in the arse on the way out, but it seems more and more that the collateral damage is not worth the entertainment. Given that the person starting this has gone away and there's little to no chance of any actual resolution anyway, may I humbly recommend that this thread be closed?
posted by dg at 11:51 PM on June 7, 2013 [2 favorites]


This thread needs less "I".
posted by Namlit at 11:51 PM on June 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


mathowie: "It's not about scoring points or being contrarian or trying to debate everyone."

Also we don't have upvoting.

ishrinkmajeans: "This is again turning into a "none of the things you say are true!" and if I copy and past my sources again I'll be "debating". So I have to be "wrong" again I guess."

Just an observation: You seem to have a fundemental misunderstanding about how this place works. I've seen you use variants on a claim to accept wrongness at least twice and I think it shows that you are trying to win something or convert people or something. And that isn't really what we do here most days. IE: We share view points, even differing points rather than trying to convert people over to our side.

dobbs: "Why is this thread still open?"

Because thread closing isn't up to user vote.
posted by Mitheral at 11:55 PM on June 7, 2013 [6 favorites]


That 'trying to bring people to the truth' thing is not easy. It requires a good command of timing and tone, good research and information-literacy skills, and, at the risk of saying something obvious, it also requires a good sense of what 'the truth' is, and of how, sometimes, there may not be a single 'the truth' to bring people to. And even with all of those things, it's still not a commenting style that generally goes over well here.
posted by box at 11:57 PM on June 7, 2013 [15 favorites]


This thread needs less "I".

SLENCED ALL MY LFE!
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 11:59 PM on June 7, 2013 [17 favorites]


Something that may seem obvious may not be correct.

Something that may seem obvious to you (general you) may also not seem obvious to someone who is not you.

The statement that women have lower sex drives than men is one of those. People are going to hear that in different ways, and they're also going to approach it differently - they may want to engage it from their own experience, or from a scientific/academic one, and they may want you to unpack the assumptions you have that made you think that.

I have been guilty more than once of not doing this, but unless you're making a statement like "famous person was born on X date," it's often less contentious to preface something like "women have lower sex drives than men" with "I thought that..." or "I was taught that..." or "In my experience."
posted by rtha at 12:05 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


He booped out. Let's let him be.
posted by nathancaswell at 12:30 AM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


Might the word 'upvotes' be a clue as to why ishrinkmajeans seems to misunderstand what a MetaFilter thread actually is, and an explanation for the pedantry-without-facts 'WikiPedia academic' mode of communication? That's certainly the way folk tend to talk in the more popular sections of that site where 'upvotes' are a thing.

Yeah, that was actually the very first thing that caught my eye in this thread. MetaFilter is not Reddit & specifically not whatever the segment of it that's populated by extreme "men's rights" advocates is called, which is where I'm sure ishrinkmajeans comes from.

We have our own culture & patterns, ishrinkmajeans; if all you want to do is export the behaviors that go on there & establish a beachhead for your cause, that's not going to happen. What you should do instead is listen & learn how things work here & why they work so that in time you can put off your old ways & take on new ones that would allow you to become a contributing member of our little information ecosystem.
posted by scalefree at 12:34 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


This is again turning into a "none of the things you say are true!" and if I copy and past my sources again I'll be "debating". So I have to be "wrong" again I guess.

"Yes", you "do".
posted by dersins at 12:37 AM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


I must be getting old, because I used to love watching these flameouts unfold into the inevitable flouncing out with or without the door hitting someone in the arse on the way out, but it seems more and more that the collateral damage is not worth the entertainment.

Lets get some perspective here. This collateral damage you speak of is just someone stopping reading website a, and transferring their allegiance to website b, or c, or d.

People do that all the time without making a big song and dance about it.

But drama queens gonna drama queen.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 12:41 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


By 'collateral damage' I was referring to the number of long-standing members that have left as a result of recent escalated dramas that someone else started. That wasn't clear, I agree. But as you say - still just someone no longer reading a Web site.
posted by dg at 12:57 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


I guess so people can keep calling the person who voluntarily left the thread childish and petulant?

Hey everyone, let's call Drinkydie childish and petulant! If that's too boring, throw in "Beiber fan" or "rhino licker", for extra flavor.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:10 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


EmpressCallipygos: " Which is a false premise because women have different sex drives than men.

We don't, you know.

And my own source for that claim is my being a woman.
"

Explain my ex-wife then, if you would be so kind.

(KIDDING HERE! KIDDING HERE!)
posted by Samizdata at 1:13 AM on June 8, 2013


Oooh, you're going to hell for that one!
posted by dg at 1:16 AM on June 8, 2013


ishrinkmajeans: "Which is a false premise because women have different sex drives than men.

We don't, you know.

And my own source for that claim is my being a woman.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:56 PM on June 7 [+] [!]


The only way to, by personal experience, know that women have the same sex drive as a man is to have been both a man and a woman. Appealing to being a woman to contradict my statement that men and women have different sex drives doesn't make sense. This can only be known in the aggregate by statistical or biological research.
"

I suppose y'all might want to go here...
posted by Samizdata at 1:17 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans: "We'll never know because you deleted my post and let the patriarchy post stand which was pure slander."

Not got a dog in this race. I see posting around here as somewhat like the mod staff having a nifty big place they all live together and have pretty much a round the clock party we all get to come to.

That means we play by THEIR rules as it is THEIR house. If you don't want to play, then this isn't the party for you, even if the snacks are delicious.

Earlier today, I was getting rabid during the Verizon phone data discussion. I was getting honestly very hot under the collar, because I though someone was happily ignoring the vitally important point (emphasis mine in self-mockery), then I realized I was doing it wrong. So, I took a break, played some Bastion, helped a handicapped neighbor and chilled out for a while. Then I went back in to post a link to the collection of PRISM docs Anon leaked. Didn't say anything else.

We will not laugh at you and mock you and say nasty things about your mother if you take a break from what appears to be an emotionally charged discussion for you. We will not accuse you of cowardice (although that did happen to me a long time ago).

We will, most probably shake our heads, facepalm, and possibly snigger if you can't walk away and realize we are NOT out to get you. Believe you me, I have been kicking around these virtual walls a good long time, and I have seen many such things happen before. If you want to chat a little more about things here, please MeMail me. We are all here to hang out and help out, if you want to listen. (Mind you, I have been a part of many "online communities" before, but this is the only place I refer to as a community without any qualifiers like "online." We may not always get along, but there's an awful lot of smart, funny, and wonderful people here (please feel free to chime along, MeFis, and flatter my fragile ego) if you will be part of us.
posted by Samizdata at 1:31 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


I don't see a point in trying to win a debate in a masturbation thread, since you're only proving to the world that you are the biggest wanker.
posted by tservo at 2:07 AM on June 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


Yeah, I don't think the theory that 'those who talk about it the most are doing it the least' applies to masturbation. That may or may not be the reason I never talk about it.
posted by dg at 2:10 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


If women have as high a sex drive as men then how come I'm not getting laid like ALL THE TIME amirite guyz?
posted by Decani at 2:17 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


You're not?
posted by Elementary Penguin at 2:28 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I don't see a point in trying to win a debate in a masturbation thread...

The climax, of course.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:33 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


A dud root is worse than no root.
posted by h00py at 2:52 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Yet, strangely, that never seems to work as a pick-up line.
posted by dg at 2:58 AM on June 8, 2013


You probably didn't burn enough SPAM.
posted by fleacircus at 3:06 AM on June 8, 2013


ishrinkmajeans: I make assumptions because I assume some things are obvious, to be totally frank

Yes. And those of us who are better at this critical thinking thing learn to challenge our own assumptions before spouting opinions based on nothing but your own experiences. To staunchly defend your right to do so is a special kind of hubris.

And, frankly, nobody called you names. It's reading as if what you're upset about is the challenge to yourr self-proclaimed lazy arguments. Lazy arguments tend not to fly here.

Like, here's an example:

I recently read a post on MeFi where I thought "Wow, that's really offensive and mis-guided because X." And rather than just posting "No, because X" I went and fact checled myself on X. And fuck me if I wasn't dead wrong. And so I shut the hell up and moved on.
posted by DarlingBri at 3:43 AM on June 8, 2013 [31 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans: "I make assumptions because I assume some things are obvious, to be totally frank. So when someone says 'that doesn't make sense' I go to wikipedia hoping that will solve the matter.

There's no "solving the matter" here. This isn't a business meeting where you resolve the agenda points and send everyone off with action items. If you are coming here to solve threads, you're really not getting the point of this place.
posted by octothorpe at 5:05 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


There's a few, notable areas on MeFi for which this isn't true, but for the most part conventional wisdom and arguments built upon conventional wisdom are pretty strongly contested. Well, also, in addition to conventional wisdom, the related "intuition".

One problem is that conventional wisdom and intuition are frequently wrong. But they're not always wrong, of course, and they're also frequently right. So it's not just that.

The other problem is that arguments from conventional wisdom and intuition are suspect because, to be blunt, they're lazy. That's a strike against them, right away, because actually thinking about and learning and understanding stuff takes a lot of effort. (And let's be fair: ishrinkmajeans wasn't the only person in that thread to make assertions based upon what they just know to be true because, well, they know it's true.)

There are some people on some topics/threads where I'll notice them jumping in with "x is wrong because y is obviously true, we all know it" or "x is wrong because I just know that y is obviously true because me" and it's annoying, and there will quite often be someone who responds with "no, actually..." but, really, it's okay because the very smartest, best educated, most rigorous, and most self-critical person in the world is still probably going to be working from conventional wisdom and their intuition more often than not. It's human.

But then there are some people who approach most topics (at least, those they publicly engage) this way. And those people, especially, do badly on MetaFilter.

This is to MetaFilter's credit. It's partly the influence of academics and scientists and other people who make their living thinking critically. (I do really believe this, although I have to concede that these folk often act contrary to this ethos on topics that are outside their specialty.) It's partly that we skew a bit older than elsewhere.

But it's also a distinct community ethos here. There's a reason why all of MeFi is a wall of text and there's no threading. Constructive, critical dialogue, engagement, is absolutely core to what the comments on MeFi are all about, it's not primarily about performance and it's not primarily about debating, though those two things are factors.

Categorical statements, flat assertions about the nature of reality, are expected to clear a very high bar here, relative to elsewhere on the web. At the very least we're expected to qualify with subjectivity; better yet are substantive qualifications.

And trying to understand those with whom we're engaging, to have a sense how they will read the things we write, and to listen to what they write, is crucial. Because our comments are discussions, engagements with others, with the presumption of intellectual self-criticism.

Jumping into threads with statements about what's true because everyone knows it's true is in opposition to all of these things. Doing it in many threads is going to annoy people. And while I'll concede that doing this as a contrarian is especially going to annoy people, I think that doing it as agreement with the majority will also annoy. Because it's not really a contribution or participation. We don't need anyone offering conventional wisdom as conventional wisdom because, by its nature, we already have access to it. It's already sitting there, present.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 5:12 AM on June 8, 2013 [30 favorites]


Metafilter is just a mean place, and becomes a little more so every day.... a place where any contrarian opinion on gender issues specifically will be met with hostility, shaming, and ostracism.

I'm not defending ishrinkmajeans' specific comments, because clearly he has some learning to do about debating others, but some of the snark directed at him here is as ugly as anything he said.

And wrong.

The suggestion to search .edu domains is funny. There is of course a robust scientific basis for characterizing male and female sex drives and sexual behaviors as different and complementary in evolutionary terms. Ishinkmajeans never got close to a scientifically accurate statement of the facts, but he is not just flat wrong either, only ideologically incorrect for this website and bad at making his case.

The people saying "no women and men are exactly the same" are just as wrong as anything he said wrt to biology. And we acknowledge that every single day in AskMe threads, by the way, including some of the loudest "we are all the same" voices in his thread.

The original post dealt with socially constructed notions of gendered difference. And that is what most in this thread are using to beat ishrinkmajeans about the head. That is not the same thing as reproductive biology on a species or order wide basis.

This debate confuses these terms, but no one has bothered to say that, defuse the conflict, assuage ismj's ego, and educate him on the sex/gender distinction, because hey, pile-on in MeTa!
posted by spitbull at 5:16 AM on June 8, 2013 [33 favorites]


To pay devil's advocate a tiny bit, it does seem some of the reactions to the original statement were knee-jerk and not really in good faith. As questionable as his unsourced claims were, he did clearly say on average.

They can get sex easier than men (on average) and may have lower sex drives (again on average).

And people came in and said things like "That's not true, I'm a woman, QED" or "I'm a woman and I wanted sex more than my ex boyfriend so you're wrong."

It would be like if I said, "on average women earn more than men" and instead of saying, "that's not true, on average men make more, even for the same work" someone said, “uh no, I'm a guy and I make more money than my girlfriend so I know that's not true."

But I know a lot of posts were deleted, so maybe I am not correctly matching responses to comments and I apologize in advance if that's the case.
posted by payoto at 5:54 AM on June 8, 2013 [20 favorites]


Whyyyyyyyyy are we both feeding and coddling the troll? Whyyyyyyyyyyyy?!?
posted by batmonkey at 5:56 AM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


"On average" is not a get-out-of-sourcing-free card, particularly not when doling out conventional wisdom to deny that a conversation should be had.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 6:04 AM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


Metafilter: I am literally seething with rage at you right now.
posted by chillmost at 6:04 AM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


"On average" is not a get-out-of-sourcing-free card, particularly not when doling out conventional wisdom to deny that a conversation should be had.

No, of course not. I'm not saying it is.
posted by payoto at 6:09 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


ISMJ: if your views do not fit with the rose-tinted biases and prejudices of mefi, they will shout you down. Leave it dude(ette).
posted by marienbad at 6:11 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


ISMJ - since you are new, I am going to offer some observations from my years here at MeFi that you might find helpful:

One, MetaFilter does not have "upvotes". There are "favorites" which, by design, mean different things to different users - they can mean favorites, support, bookmarks, and yes for some they are upvotes - but no one knows how each person uses theirs - keep that in mind.

Two, there are members here who don't have to say much at all and they get lots of favorites* - do not take it personally and get seething mad about it. Just like at any website, job, business or school, there is an in-crowd and they support each other with in-jokes and giving each other favorites. This has nothing to do with you personally. Once you are more familiar with the site, you will see who they are and not take offense when you see this happening. Really, don't let this get to you and make you so upset.

Three, MetaFilter Blue is hard. Not just making an FPP, but participating in a thread as well. On one hand it is great to have a higher level of accountability when making comments, but on the other hand, it can seem very unfriendly and contrary to more friendly community based sites. There are very intelligent people here who enjoy good conversation. That comes at the price of a higher standard for thread participation. You really do have to put on your thinking cap and best behavior when you play there. (that's why I'm not there a lot)

I think if you did a little more lurking and tried to get the "feel" of MeFi it might help you understand how things work here. And it has worked the way it works for years and isn't going to change anytime soon. I hope you take these and other suggestions here with the best of intentions and can find a way to participate that doesn't make you so angry. And if not, maybe MeFi isn't a good fit for you and you can find somewhere else that is more congruent to your posting style.

*There are also many members you will find who get a lot of favorites because they give really good replies and advice too.
posted by NoraCharles at 6:21 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


Sorry, just woke up. Yes, anecdote may not be the best response to an unsourced pair of averages that supposedly everyone knows. Plenty of people were also saying that those averages were received ideas with shaky foundations. I'm not sure how you could even measure whether women can "get sex" more easily than men. That may be on my lack of imagination, though.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 6:25 AM on June 8, 2013


Hey ishrinkmajeans, did you know that you can adjust settings so that you don't see in the thread how many favorites the comments are getting? When I learned this I made the switch and turned off favorites and it enhanced my enjoyment of the site considerably. So if someone responds to something I've said with snark, I don't have the added feeling that there must be [x] number of MeFites who approve of the snark, and it makes it pretty easy to ignore the snark.

I also remember feeling that snarky comments seemed to generate favorites at a faster rate than thoughtful comments.

The other thing that has helped me here is if someone responds to a comment of mine with snark, I am not nearly as likely to engage with them much further. I'm not always successful with this, but it helps when I am. And it also helps me to remember that sometimes some of my comments here are snarky, and I like to think that I'm not a horrible person for making them, so if someone sends some snark my way, my life is easier if I just chill out about it.

I can't say that I always love how you interact with people here since you seem to me to be pretty quick to want to turn a lot of threads into arguments in which you seem convinced from the get go that your position and only your position is irrefutably correct, but I do appreciate that you do engage enthusiastically with the material here, and that you do tend to want to respond on the merits.
posted by MoonOrb at 6:48 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


I think KathrynT's comment should be put next to the comment box.

Gotta wholeheartedly agree with that. Nearly all the comments I've regretted (which is quite a few) have been done under heavy annoyance or anger, with perspective, empathy and balance lost.

The best that will happen from commenting when mad is a wall of put-downs in reply, and the reputation of being a MeFite-who-shouts-at-clouds. The worst is your comment deleted, or the mods inviting you to perhaps go elsewhere.

Also, as someone who's had a major health scare / brush with mortality for related reasons, if you are getting mad at what you read on MetaFilter or elsewhere online, you need to take a long, honest look at how this may seriously, and possibly irreversibly, damage yourself.
posted by Wordshore at 6:54 AM on June 8, 2013


If women have as high a sex drive as men then how come I'm not getting laid like ALL THE TIME amirite guyz?

I think it has something to do with the Atlantic Ocean. And or maybe timezones.
posted by terrapin at 7:07 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


The people saying "no women and men are exactly the same" are just as wrong as anything he said wrt to biology.

I agree, and I'm as thankful as you are that none of them made an appearance in this thread or the one on the blue.
posted by Ice Cream Socialist at 7:15 AM on June 8, 2013 [9 favorites]


Metafilter is just a mean place, and becomes a little more so every day....

I'm really surprised that anyone who's been on the site since 2006 would assert this.
posted by Greg Nog at 7:23 AM on June 8, 2013 [33 favorites]


payoto, the "on average" thing is not important, because that's not what the original thread is about. It's not a thread which is tangentially about female sex drive, so unless ishrinkmajeans's hypothesis is that women have no sex drive at all, then it's a derail. And it's a derail from an interesting thing to an old stereotypical argument.

It's not just when the majority of MeFi disagrees with ishrinkmajeans that he ruins threads. Here, here's great story on people sending photos to people imprisoned in solitary confinement which only got 27 comments, 5 of which were from ishrinkmajeans and at least 8 were directly replying. And instead of talking about great people who buck the system by doing the small acts of resistance which can make a difference ("dammit children, you've got to be kind"), it becomes a tiresome retread of "solitary confinement sucks", which is true but futile.

There's this thread about tumblr derailed because ishrinkmajeans discovers what robots.txt is and chooses to shout down the nearly 20 years accumulated wisdom on it that's communicated to him.

So I've gone into a lot of detail about a few things ishrinkmajeans has got wrong, and this is because they're easy traps to fall into, so no one should be ashamed of it. People here should:
  1. Engage with the actual facts of the particular post, not their pre-existing feelings on a subject the post happens to involve (whether tangentially, or as its core subject).
  2. Have a good map of the where people's preconceptions on the subject of the thread lie, and write their comments thinking about how they look from all different parts of that map.
  3. Remember that hundreds of people will view everything you write, so you really have to make it worth those people's time. Better to waste 5 minutes of your life throwing away a half-written comment than waste lots of other peoples time in their reading it and getting nothing out of it.
  4. Especially, if you're writing on a phone, maybe find other outlets for your thoughts. I follow enough interesting people to have conversations as intellectually stimulating as I get from MeFi on Twitter, for example.
  5. Remember that even the best-informed person in the thread has lots to learn from everyone else, so sit and listen.
  6. If you come across something new to you, take a while to understand its context before questioning it. Otherwise you end up like the physicist in this xkcd.

posted by ambrosen at 7:25 AM on June 8, 2013 [23 favorites]


"The people saying 'no women and men are exactly the same' are just as wrong as anything he said wrt to biology."

Seconding Ice Cream Socialist's response, but also to point out, in case anyone isn't paying close attention, the missing punctuation in this sentence, inferred from context, is extremely important. That is, the intended meaning of the quoted phrase in that sentence is no, women and men are exactly the same.

Because I happen to think that it's entirely, unquestionably true that no women and men are exactly the same. If anyone had said that, they'd be right. Not that anyone had.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 7:31 AM on June 8, 2013


Wow, I had missed his Tumblr thread derail. That's insane. "I'm so seething mad right now I could punch somebody" seems to be a running theme in his posts ... and there it was about the existence of robots.txt?!?!?
posted by Unified Theory at 7:33 AM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


It's not just when the majority of MeFi disagrees with ishrinkmajeans that he ruins threads. Here, here's great story on people sending photos to people imprisoned in solitary confinement which only got 27 comments, 5 of which were from ishrinkmajeans and at least 8 were directly replying. And instead of talking about great people who buck the system by doing the small acts of resistance which can make a difference ("dammit children, you've got to be kind"), it becomes a tiresome retread of "solitary confinement sucks", which is true but futile.

True, but futile, but totally on topic with the article in FPP discussing how the prison is torture and the efforts to close it.
posted by Drinky Die at 7:36 AM on June 8, 2013


Boy, the user flamed out in a blinding flash of indignant rage, and now I kind of just want to turn over and go to sleep for awhile while they're off somewhere else, disappointed.
posted by softlord at 7:39 AM on June 8, 2013


Okay, this turn in the conversation is not a good thing.

I think a member has to really have a pretty long and egregious history before his/her history becomes fair game in a thread like this. This is a very new user, just weeks here. And it seems to me that the mod and possibly community consensus is that the bar for this (trolling history being justified) is even higher than I think it is.

If the rationale is that a discussion of this stuff could help ishrinkmajeans understand where he's going wrong, then rather than piling-on him here and bringing up all this history, perhaps it would be better to discuss this stuff in a memail with him? If the point is to be helpful? Otherwise, it's just a pile-on and shaming of a new user.

And I say this as someone who does think there's some problems with his interaction here. But I feel pretty sure that the mods have been discussing this with him. Or, if not, he ought to write to them and ask to discuss it with them privately. I just don't feel comfortable at all having this out publicly in the case of a very new user who, although having some problematic behavior, very easily could just not quite grok the community here yet.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 7:42 AM on June 8, 2013 [15 favorites]


giving each other favorites.

Is this really a thing? I didn't realise that the people who gave me favourites were wanting reciprocation.
posted by arcticseal at 7:48 AM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


Boy, the user flamed out in a blinding flash of indignant rage, and now I kind of just want to turn over and go to sleep for awhile while they're off somewhere else, disappointed.

Is this an attempt at MeTa slash?
posted by GenjiandProust at 7:49 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Ivan Fyodorovich, you're right, those 2 paragraphs in my comment went into absolutely far too much detail. I guess this is MeTa, but if it weren't, I'd ask the mods to delete it, and I'd rewrite those commenting heuristics I wrote in a much neater and more succinct form.
posted by ambrosen at 7:50 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Is this an attempt at MeTa slash?

Don't encourage The Whelk. You know he will write it.
posted by maryr at 7:50 AM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


Okay, this turn in the conversation is not a good thing.

I think the conversation is just fine. New user disruptive in multiple threads, comes to MeTa and asks "is this how the site works" and gets told how the site works.
posted by donnagirl at 7:50 AM on June 8, 2013 [9 favorites]


Yeah, it's proceed with caution territory because I'd really rather this didn't turn into just a lengthy fisking of ismj's activity on the site, but to an extent I think when we're talking about brand new user coming on way too strong there's a difference in saying "hey, all this stuff from the last couple weeks has been problematic in the same way the thread you mentioned yourself was" and going digging through years of history for a gotcha.

Is this really a thing? I didn't realise that the people who gave me favourites were wanting reciprocation.

I think there's a belief that it's more of a thing that it is; that is, I'm positive that there are some network effects that show up in aggregate favoriting (because we've actually had some mefites do some clever datawankery to establish correlations between mutual contacting and favoriting rates) but there hasn't been any kind of satisfying analysis backing up the idea that it's some sort of active or mercenary thing rather than just a natural correlation that arises from the fact that people who like what each other say are both (a) more likely to be adding each other as contacts and (b) more likely to be favoriting one one another's things-that-they-say. It's a big complicated question and one for an anthropological statistician to tackle some time, but I feel like people draw some relatively dicey and unfounded conclusions about what is happening and at what scale and why on this stuff in the absence of that actual serious analysis.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:57 AM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


I didn't realise that the people who gave me favourites were wanting reciprocation.

I actually expect two back for every one I give out.
posted by Drinky Die at 7:58 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


I didn't realise that the people who gave me favourites were wanting reciprocation.

If one favorites your text, one reasonably expects a quantity of Earl Grey tea (loose, not bagged) in reciprocation as a thank you. Otherwise, like playing Buttler as a lower-order batsman in a one day international, what is the point?

Related: several people on here owe me tea.
posted by Wordshore at 8:04 AM on June 8, 2013 [14 favorites]


Ivan, I agree with you wholeheartedly in principle, but this seems like a case where an admittedly new user has already grabbed the attention of quite a number of people here based on his contrarian, come-at-me-bro behavior in other threads. The fact that he's come to MeTa and asked for feedback on how the site operates might help curb that kind of behavior.

I think this thread, barring a couple exceptions, might serve as a good learning tool for him on a number of points, e.g., please don't tell people "oh go look it up" if you toss up an extraordinary claim without evidence, try to talk about the actual subject of the thread, please use italics or something when you quote people, and what "patriarchy" means.

I mean I get the impulse to want to tread carefully, but when a new user can't be bothered to lurk and absorb basic stuff like this before jumping into the fray and engaging in Debate Club with others around here, I can understand why the feedback he gets when he asks how the site works is going to be more on the tough love end of things (especially when the exchange on the blue is mischaracterized the way it is).

Yes, we absolutely should be patient, clear and welcoming towards new users who are having a couple early stumbles. But it requires an effort on both parts, and when that gets out of balance, it's understandable that people get frustrated, albeit probably not "seething with rage".
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 8:06 AM on June 8, 2013 [10 favorites]


If one favorites your text, one reasonably expects a quantity of Earl Grey tea (loose, not bagged) in reciprocation as a thank you. Otherwise, like playing Buttler as a lower-order batsman in a one day international, what is the point?

Hmm, favorites are good but I have been wanting one of these.
posted by Drinky Die at 8:08 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


" to an extent I think when we're talking about brand new user coming on way too strong there's a difference in saying..."

Yeah, in the comment I just erased responding to donnagirl, I think that a generalization is okay and entirely relevant, but searching history and posting examples is ... way too aggressive and likely to do far more harm than good.

I'm not comfortable with that even when I think it's entirely relevant and justified. That is to say, in those extreme cases, I'd be fine with it being done by some relatively impartial outsider as documentation or something, but when done by partisan opponents in an argument it's problematic and makes me uncomfortable.

Marisa Stole the Precious Thing, I'm struggling with this because I agree with you that there's a pattern of behavior in ishrinkmajeans's comments and he's marginal on whether he appears to be making a good-faith effort to understand the way we do things here. I found ambrosen's examples revealing and persuasive about this, although it was already my vague impression.

But, as I imply above, there's too much room for error when doing this to someone. And it's going to be received as, and is often intended to be, hostile (though not so much in this case with ambrosen) and so will make the member more defensive. It's not so likely to be a teaching moment, I think.

And in the case of new users, it's uncertain because, on the one hand, from time-to-time we're going to get those disruptive people who just won't make an effort but we're also going to get people who just take a while to figure it out. There's so many people here who started out participating in a very conflict-prone manner and then eventually settled in. I feel like trolling a new user's history is just one step away from attempting to force them to flame-out, which occasionally might be the best result but often is not. Anyway, my sense is that ishrinkmajeans is really just, to be blunt, very clueless and so there's still hope.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 8:18 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Wait, there isn't a secret snark cabal subversive prize for the most deleted posts?
posted by sammyo at 8:22 AM on June 8, 2013


Tea. Works for almost everything.
posted by arcticseal at 8:30 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


spitbull: "Metafilter is just a mean place, and becomes a little more so every day.... a place where any contrarian opinion on gender issues specifically will be met with hostility, shaming, and ostracism."

When you tell women that having the sex they want is relatively easy for them, and assume that they only want to have sex with men, you are going to offend a big chunk of them. That's not because of some neoliberal bias toward a hyper-progressive approach to gender politics; it's because people really hate being told flatly what their sexual predilections and experiences are. Frankly I know a lot of conservative women who would have been just as annoyed.
posted by koeselitz at 8:30 AM on June 8, 2013 [29 favorites]


Marisa Stole the Precious Thing, I'm struggling with this because I agree with you that there's a pattern of behavior in ishrinkmajeans's comments and he's marginal on whether he appears to be making a good-faith effort to understand the way we do things here. I found ambrosen's examples revealing and persuasive about this, although it was already my vague impression.

I'm chalking a lot of this up to what was mentioned upthread about posting via smartphone; that maybe he's missing the replies he's getting and that's why doesn't seem to be reading them. But maybe some of this can be chalked up to just glancing over stuff in the heat of the moment or misreading some pretty clear stuff due to "wanting to punch something". That's why I think - and hope - that in the light of morning, he might be able to re-read this thread with more calm and charity.

But, as I imply above, there's too much room for error when doing this to someone. And it's going to be received as, and is often intended to be, hostile (though not so much in this case with ambrosen) and so will make the member more defensive. It's not so likely to be a teaching moment, I think.

Apart from a couple of point-and-laugh comments, what I'm mostly seeing here are people explaining what happened and what can be done differently. Yeah, some of them "sound" angry or frustrated. Isn't that understandable, even permitted? If you join up on a site, clearly without having lurked for very long at all, and start engaging with people in other threads in a pretty contrarian manner, and then later start a MeTa asking the community at large about how the site functions, yeah, you can expect a degree of blowback. People are going to sound on edge. I'm not sure what could be done differently, really, when even the title of this MeTa is a mischaracterization of how others have interacted with him.

That said, I agree that criticism - even angry criticism - can be couch civilly. For the most part I think that's been achieved here. But I think the effort to iron things out needs to go in both directions.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 8:33 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


(because we've actually had some mefites do some clever datawankery to establish correlations between mutual contacting and favoriting rates)

How very NSA-ish of "some mefites" to do. This proves it - there is a cabal!
posted by headnsouth at 8:37 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


To pay devil's advocate a tiny bit, it does seem some of the reactions to the original statement were knee-jerk and not really in good faith. As questionable as his unsourced claims were, he did clearly say on average.

They can get sex easier than men (on average) and may have lower sex drives (again on average).

And people came in and said things like "That's not true, I'm a woman, QED" or "I'm a woman and I wanted sex more than my ex boyfriend so you're wrong."


I was one of the people doing that and this is a really fair point. One of the things I was trying to express, and I might well have done it badly, is that context is super important; even if what you're saying is true, there are times when saying it is hurtful or irrelevant or problematic (in my house we call this Walter Syndrome; "No, Walter, you're not wrong, you're just an asshole [NB NOT CALLING ANYONE AN ASSHOLE EXCEPT WALTER SOBCHAK]).

This was a situation where, even if the point were true (and maybe it is; I haven't found any good primary sources but it looks like there might be some validity to this claim), actually making it is sort of a jerk move. Even if the poster doesn't think it's offensive, for some people (including me!) there is a lot of baggage tied up in what, to others, might be a simple statement of fact (or, at least, conventional wisdom) and, as people living in a community, it's worth acknowledging that before we start making assertions.

Anyway, my point here is yes, our individual anecdotes about having higher sex drives than certain men are definitely not evidence against his actual point, but it might be evidence about why saying that is hurtful or unhelpful. I apologize if I expressed myself badly and I really do appreciate someone making this point.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 8:44 AM on June 8, 2013 [9 favorites]


Simultaneous mutual reciprocal favoriting.

#MeFi69
posted by The Deej at 8:44 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Fisking! What a great term. Never knew it. At first i thought it was a typo (was it supposed to be "fishing?" "fisting?") but no, it's very handy.
posted by Miko at 8:46 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


I make assumptions because I assume some things are obvious, to be totally frank. So when someone says "that doesn't make sense" I go to wikipedia hoping that will solve the matter. And then when people go "but that's wikipedia!" then I go to sources on wikipedia. And if someone then goes "but that's just one source!" I will find multiple sources and so on. I keep trying to bring people to the truth slowly but surely.

So -- that's a really telling description of your thought process. Note that your starting point is not "the truth:" it's gut opinion, "assumed" because you think it's "obvious". And your process for supporting that gut opinion is the exact opposite of how one determines "the truth:" you start with at best tertiary sources and either try to cherry-pick phrases that seem to support your gut opinion, or just point at the whole mass and announce "See?" even though the whole mass doesn't actually support what you're arguing. And if pressed you step backwards towards the actual research sources, but not with the intention of discovering what the actual facts are, rather you're hunting for support for the gut opinion you started with (and it's clear from your choice of sources that you're not actually at all well-informed on the issues you're arguing about in the first place.) You're not "trying to bring people to the truth," you're trying to bring them around to your opinion.

I'm not saying you're alone in this style of argumentation. Not at all. (There are whole news channels devoted to it, after all.) And most people have opinions on issues that they're not necessarily all that well-informed about. The difference is that most people (not all, to be sure!) are at least a little bit willing to reconsider those opinions when presented with oppositional evidence.

I think that when you state your opinions as fact, when you say something you think is "obvious", and are confronted with a large group of people saying "hey, that opinion of yours is not actually correct," rather than going on the defensive immediately and casting about for anything you can find to "prove" your opinion is fact, you might want to consider re-examining whether that opinion is in fact as obvious as you think it is, or why you think it's obvious in the first place. Lots of "obvious" things turn out to be plain wrong.
posted by ook at 8:46 AM on June 8, 2013 [20 favorites]


"When you tell women that having the sex they want is relatively easy for them..."

Yeah, to emphasize what koeselitz said — that's an assertion that will almost invariably piss women off, regardless of politics, regardless of almost anything. It's not about feminism or politics at all, really; it's about how men are often willfully clueless of what it's like to be female. Every woman knows more than she ever needs to about what it's like for a man to fear rejection. But most men are utterly clueless about what it's like on the other side of that.

I just had this conversation last month with my mother and her husband, both of whom are in their mid-sixties. He's pretty conservative and it was challenging for him to understand this, but after approaching it from various directions, he finally had a sort of voila moment.

It came up because I haven't had sex in a very long time. But I could have sex if the only thing I cared about was having sex. And no matter what the male stereotype is, very few men are actually interested in having sex with anyone available merely for the sake of having sex. And that's just as true for women. As someone said in that thread, we want to have sex with the kind of people we want to have sex with, and for most of us, even very attractive people, that's not so easy.

There's much less difference between men and women in this regard than men commonly think and it's precisely because men tend to think of women as people who are the gatekeepers for sex and almost never think of themselves that way. There's a whole boatload of fucked-up gender politics implicit in this and it's why a man asserting this is an extremely reliable way to make women almost literally turn red, and their heads to explode in fury.

If you're into that sort of thing as, apparently, some men are.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 8:51 AM on June 8, 2013 [45 favorites]


When you tell women that having the sex they want is relatively easy for them

Adding "they want" changes the meaning of the original statement "they can get sex easier than men (on average)" rather significantly. One need only visit AskMeFi to see that people in relationships are not having "the sex they want".

Also, people have said "X statement will surely piss people off". While that may be true, it indicates absolutely nothing about the truth value of the statement. It is the worst sort of magical thinking to say, "that which angers me is false". It seems to me that anger is more often a response to the truth. (but not always, lest anyone think to say, "I heard something false and it made me mad, QED") All the red faces and exploding heads in the world will not change reality.
posted by Tanizaki at 8:59 AM on June 8, 2013


Every woman knows more than she ever needs to about what it's like for a man to fear rejection. But most men are utterly clueless about what it's like on the other side of that.

I think this is true and I think that part of the reason is that it can be really scary to admit to being sexual rejected as a woman because it means you're hideous or disgusting or there's just something profoundly wrong with you. There is a shit-ton of baggage tied up in being a woman who wants more sex than she can get and so it's scary to talk about so it's a perspective we just don't hear, whereas we hear plenty of men talking about how they can't get as much sex as they want.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 9:02 AM on June 8, 2013 [30 favorites]


It is the worst sort of magical thinking to say, "that which angers me is false".

I don't think people are saying that. I think people are saying "Could you please provide actual evidence of that which angers me instead of just repeating what 'everyone knows' or you believe is 'obvious'?" and I think people are saying "Even if it is true on average it's a lot more complicated than that" and also "Even if this point is true the way in which you are making it is unhelpful and you might want to consider context." I don't think anyone's saying "Jesus I am pissed the fuck off so you must be wrong".
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 9:05 AM on June 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


And no matter what the male stereotype is, very few men are actually interested in having sex with anyone available merely for the sake of having sex. And that's just as true for women.

Hear fucking hear. I had this conversation with a couple younger male friends of mine recently, although the subject was more broadly about feminism. I don't remember how the subject came up, but at some point I said I was a feminist, and another one said, "I support equal rights, therefore, I am not a feminist." Oh_boy_here_we_go.jpg

About an hour later, we were still talking about this, only within the context of sex. When it came time to talk about some of the stereotypes about male sexuality, it was immediately apparent to them that the whole notion that men are reptilian-brained horndogs that will hump anything soft and warm was absurd, and contrary to personal experience. Flip this around, and it became apparent that similar sweeping untruths about female sexuality were likely just as absurd, if not more so.

It sucks to have to use that "the patriarchy hurts men, too!" thing when talking to guys like this, but in the long run, even men coming from this relatively sheltered and regressive place are able to grasp the absurdity of "woo life is just one big ol' sex smorgasbord for the ladies" thing, which kind of underlines how dumb the idea is in the first place.

Adding "they want" changes the meaning of the original statement "they can get sex easier than men (on average)" rather significantly.

If it's not sex you want, then it's not even a part of the equation of "sex you can get". I could fuck a hollow in a tree and sure, that's sex I could have any time, but that's not sex I want.

Apart from "[women] can get sex easier than men (on average)" being just as unverifiable as the same sentence with "they want" added of course.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 9:08 AM on June 8, 2013 [11 favorites]


This debate confuses these terms, but no one has bothered to say that, defuse the conflict, assuage ismj's ego, and educate him on the sex/gender distinction, because hey, pile-on in MeTa!

You could volunteer to do this. Be the change etc.

Or are you being sarcastic? "Assuage his ego"? Is that a thing we're supposed to do? Because that wasn't in the contract I signed when I joined up.
posted by rtha at 9:11 AM on June 8, 2013 [13 favorites]


I don't think anyone's saying "Jesus I am pissed the fuck off so you must be wrong".

Actually I have seen one person in this thread who's saying this, and that's ISMJ.
posted by palomar at 9:14 AM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


Fisking! What a great term.

It's definitely interesting that it seems to have drifted away from the initial usage, by now, enough so that using the word no longer implies an endorsement of the conservative-war-blogger worldview. But honestly, it's still hard to see how to use it without an implied insult to Robert Fisk, and if you feel (as I do) that he and his work are worthy of respect then you really might want to find another word instead.
posted by RogerB at 9:15 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


But honestly, it's still hard to see how to use it without an implied insult to Robert Fisk, and if you feel (as I do) that he and his work are worthy of respect then you really might want to find another word instead.

"Fisking" is a new term to me, too. I always called the point-by-point incisive and snarky evisceration of a blog post ... an evisceration. And given that literally, an evisceration dissects and disassembles the contents, I think it fits the bill. So that's my candidate for a Fisking replacement.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 9:23 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


So I just read through some of the comments here and I want to re-emphasize a few things.

I'm a little confused as to how this comment makes sense (by Koselitz)

I actually feel like this is connected to the dynamic you described in the bit I quoted above. The way you describe it, you say something that seems totally obvious to you, and other people disagree. So you go off in search of evidence to prove that the thing that seemed obvious to you is actually true. It's clear that this is a little backwards, right? - evidence should precede certainty; you shouldn't have to go looking for it after the fact. But because you've identified yourself personally with the argument you made, you feel compelled to seek out some validation for the argument. But: it's okay to realize that something that seemed obvious actually isn't. There was no obligation on you to come up with any evidence.

But this isn't how people work really. We have underlying assumptions about reality and use conversation to hash out a point and if people show evidence that we're wrong we re-examine our assumptions. We must start from some basic pool of common (or assumed) common belief or every thread will start with a definition of what is is and so on and so forth.

But what people do when they see something they don't agree with in the evidence I provide isn't just say you're wrong. If someone says I'm wrong and states reasons I internalize that if I don't always comment. And no, one insults me directly, but rather than engage in the topic they'll just be shitty about it. Here's a couple examples from this thread of absolute garbage.

Guys don't you know i shrink ma jeans is Tao Lin and it's his Brand New Day?
posted by grobstein at 9:10 PM on June 7 [1 favorite +] [!]

Whyyyyyyyyy are we both feeding and coddling the troll? Whyyyyyyyyyyyy?!?
posted by batmonkey at 5:56 AM on June 8 [2 favorites +] [!]

This thread needs less "I".

SLENCED ALL MY LFE!
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 11:59 PM on June 7 [5 favorites +] [!]


My problem with threads on metafilter is that rather than engage in arguments that you don't agree in, or hell just ignore them, people will make snarky comments and then all high five each other while a person defending his position will be kicked off the thread.

Yes, sometimes my opinions are controversial and sometimes you don't agree with them. However, when I'm controversial against capitalism and in favor of BDSM that's perfectly OK and I get 30 upvotes, but when I'm controversial against pre-conceived notions in feminism or robots.txt or the law then I get shouted down and laughed at. And sure, often I'm wrong about all those things and I try and own up to it when I understand why I'm wrong. But there are biases on this site about what pre-conceived notions people have and rather than try and defend them and explain they assume the other person is an idiot and make fun of his arguments or act witty which is functionally a put-down and denigrating to the person whether people on this board will own up to that or not.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:26 AM on June 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


Can you approach the site with the idea that not everything is an argument to be won? Because that's how the site works. We're just talking.
posted by donnagirl at 9:31 AM on June 8, 2013 [11 favorites]


My problem with threads on metafilter is that rather than engage in arguments that you don't agree in, or hell just ignore them, people will make snarky comments and then all high five each other while a person defending his position will be kicked off the thread.

Why are you skipping the majority of this thread, where people are offering you real, good advice, and microscoping on these few comments while contending that this is the only thing that's been offered to you? Most of the people in this thread have taken the time and effort to explain why things went south, and what could be done differently. If you can't be bothered to even acknowledge this, and opt instead for hyperbole and mischaracterization, that really sucks and comes across as it being a waste of time to try and help you out in the first place.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 9:31 AM on June 8, 2013 [49 favorites]


Are there no comments here about your behavior or argument that made you go "Huh. That's something I should consider."

Is there nothing no one said that made you think "I didn't know that. That's helpful."

I know it's easier to do a refute-all-the-things thing in threads like this. But it can be good to acknowledge to good, useful, helpful, and non-denigrating advice too. Which people have given you here.
posted by rtha at 9:32 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


Marisa types faster than me, but I haven't had any coffee yet.
posted by rtha at 9:33 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


ISMJ, you keep calling favorites "upvotes". They're not upvotes here. Favorites here don't function like upvotes do at Reddit. This site does not function the way that Reddit does. I encourage you to let go of your preconceived notions of how this site works and spend some time just observing until you get a better feel of how the community here works as opposed to how you seem to think it works.
posted by palomar at 9:34 AM on June 8, 2013 [16 favorites]


Also, the times you listed as getting shouted down were times you were off topic, as has been pointed out above. Pay more attention to what's going on around you, instead of trying to pull every conversation to yourself.
posted by donnagirl at 9:34 AM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


My problem with threads on metafilter is that rather than engage in arguments that you don't agree in, or hell just ignore them, people will make snarky comments and then all high five each other while a person defending his position will be kicked off the thread.

Why are you skipping the majority of this thread, where people are offering you real, good advice, and microscoping on these few comments while contending that this is the only thing that's been offered to you? Most of the people in this thread have taken the time and effort to explain why things went south, and what could be done differently. If you can't be bothered to even acknowledge this, and opt instead for hyperbole and mischaracterization, that really sucks and comes across as it being a waste of time to try and help you out in the first place.


You're assuming that I am not reading the comments. I was replying to certain comments that have been appeared that do not seem to take into account how to form a basis of proof, and others that are just shitty for shittiness sake. Again I'm not "refuting all" I'm trying to re-emphasize two points. That's it.

EDIT: I've seen "likes" function pretty exactly like upvotes on reddit. It's a scoring system for points, usually devolving to has the snarkiest comeback rather than who provides a good argument. I'm not sure I want to start an argument over this, but this is one of those "obvious on its face things." Go into any thread with 100+ comments and tell me "likes" aren't a way of picking sides.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:35 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Whew.
*passes around cool water to everyone*
posted by SLC Mom at 9:36 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


But there are biases on this site about what pre-conceived notions people have and rather than try and defend them and explain they assume the other person is an idiot and make fun of his arguments or act witty which is functionally a put-down and denigrating to the person whether people on this board will own up to that or not.

Also: does it strike you as maybe a little bit odd that you should find it bad when people make assumptions about you, yet you can pass a sweeping judgement about the motivations of, oh, everyone else on the site?

You're assuming that I am not reading the comments. I was replying to certain comments that have been appeared that do not seem to take into account how to form a basis of proof, and others that are just shitty for shittiness sake.

I made no such assumption. I said you are characterizing how people have interacted with you unfairly by cherry-picking these few comments, and addressing these alone, while blithely omitting the rather helpful advice others have given you.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 9:37 AM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


How can we know that you're reading them if you're not responding to them in any noticeable way?
It would probably serve you well to concentrate less on what you perceive as shittiness and more on the comments in which people are trying to help you understand how this site works.
posted by Too-Ticky at 9:38 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Also: does it strike you as maybe a little bit odd that you should find it bad when people make assumptions about you, yet you can pass a sweeping judgement about the motivations of, oh, everyone else on the site?

Seconding this.

Also, you say that one of your problems with this site is that instead of just ignoring comments they don't agree with (like yours), people will make snarky comments and start a fight. But that's exactly what you're doing. You have the option, every single second that you're here, to not engage with the comments that you don't like. But you're choosing to do so. Maybe you should take your own advice and "hell, just ignore them".
posted by palomar at 9:41 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Jesus, that's not what the edit function is for. Unless that was one hell of a typo.
posted by rtha at 9:44 AM on June 8, 2013 [13 favorites]


Whew. The "likes" button has a whole 'nother history here and there's a bunch of stuff in the archives that may be worth reading before you stand up there on that box and proclaim to the world at large how it works here.

*passes out, needs some cool water around the ears*
posted by Namlit at 9:45 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


"I was replying to certain comments that have been appeared that do not seem to take into account how to form a basis of proof, and others that are just shitty for shittiness sake."

Not to be snarky, but why respond to these? Wouldn't it be better for you (and the discussion and the site) to respond to the recent, thoughtful comments that may have struck you in a new or interesting way?

Choose comments that you respond to after deliberation. You amplify the noise and snark by responding to it.
posted by klarck at 9:46 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


MetaFilter convention is to quote a short pertinent excerpt from whatever comment you're replying to, and italicize that. It's unusual to quote longer excerpts or full comments, and it's very unusual to combine two different commenters' text into a single italicized block. I think I understand why you're doing it, ISMJ; but there are other ways to be clear about the history of what you're responding to (eg, link to successive comments), and generally speaking, straying from established convention hinders clarity.

When I first began participating here, I used blockquote tags intead of italics. It made more sense to me. But the more I interacted on this website, I realized the value of convention for keeping everybody on the same page. I still think blockquote tags make more sense than italics in the abstract, but that doesn't mean they make more sense in the context of this community.
posted by cribcage at 9:46 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


ishrinkmajeans - please do not use the edit function to add or change content. It is for typos only.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 9:47 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans, I think that you might want to take a look at the manner in which you form an opinion; instead of starting with the opinion (even if you feel it's "obvious") and working your way back to find sources that support your opinion, try finding sources first and formulating an opinion after reading a wide breadth of them.
posted by dazed_one at 9:51 AM on June 8, 2013


Yes and there's that other thing about engaging in a discussion. OF COURSE we're assuming you haven't read pretty much more than half of the comments because you seem to be ignoring the core points of what that original thread was about, what the mods told you here, and how your main argument can be either here or there but wasn't seen as so hot in that original thread (since it wasn't a controversial "let's discuss that" type of thread).

And this thing about quoting, good to learn what cribcage says. It does help (everyone).

AAAnd, the edit function. There's a FAQ page. IF you're so new here as you say you are, why not RTFM before getting into a brawl. Sheesh.
posted by Namlit at 9:52 AM on June 8, 2013


I was getting replies to a different part of the discussion that I wanted to add too. It was meant to add to the post without adding another comment within the comment window time. It wasn't meant as a "gotcha" but rather to prevent spamming the thread.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:52 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Do not do that. Just add another comment, please.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 9:53 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Regardless of your intent, that's not what the edit function is for. . . as it says very clearly when you activate it.
posted by KathrynT at 9:53 AM on June 8, 2013


I was quoting SCIENCE.
posted by grouse at 9:54 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


EDIT: I've seen "likes" function pretty exactly like upvotes on reddit.

Consider disabling the display of favourites for a while. In my opinion it drastically changes the way a thread reads, and you may find it useful in shifting the perception that everyone is either agreeing with you, or ganging up on you. Except on Metatalk.
posted by Lorin at 9:54 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


but this is one of those "obvious on its face things."

All due respect, dude, but it's not. There's already another comment here explaining that favorites have a different history here that what you're alleging, and that you may want to do some reading through the archives before you decide you know exactly how favoriting here works.

You keep using that "obvious on its face" argument. In response, many other users have told you that that's really not the best argument to use, for a multitude of reasons. Other users here are trying to help you understand how this place works, and you keep trying to shout them down. Why? It's not a logical argument, and it's not helping you.
posted by palomar at 9:55 AM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


Yes and there's that other thing about engaging in a discussion. OF COURSE we're assuming you haven't read pretty much more than half of the comments


For what it's worth I've read every single comment on this page till now and I appreciate people who have contributed meaningfully.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:56 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yeah I mean, the other thing about participating here is that people don't owe you a debate. Debating is only one aspect of human interaction. For instance, I don't always agree with the snarky one-liners people post (sometimes they infuriate me) but on balance I wouldn't enjoy this site nearly as much if they were banished. If something is really over the line, flag it, but otherwise you're going to have to get better at not touching everything in a particular thread (or seething with your friends over MeMail, which can be a useful way to blow off steam without monopolizing a thread).
posted by en forme de poire at 9:56 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Hand to dog, I am not trying to chase you off ishrinkmajeans. But in your situation i suspect I'd spend a few moments reconsidering oif this is the best place to hang out for you. Those replies you got that prompted the MeTa where pretty mild by internet comparison. I really think you have a uneven grip of the situation and may want to reconsider the whole thing... unless of course this is exactly what you are aiming for, 200+ comments about you is a pretty good 'achievement unlocked', talk about gamification.
posted by edgeways at 9:56 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Here's the FAQ entry on how to hide favorites, in case that would be useful.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 9:56 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


*passes around cool water to everyone*

Re-hydrating everyone is well intended, but we are just going to make urine out of it.
posted by Mr. Yuck at 9:59 AM on June 8, 2013


Metafilter notes a significant distinction between posting that someone is saying something that is dopey made up bullshit and calling them a dope who makes up bullshit,

To be fair, is there ever really a good, productive purpose for calling stuff dopey bullshit as opposed to just saying it's wrong?
posted by corb at 10:02 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


Thank you! That's the point.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 10:03 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Catharsis?
posted by en forme de poire at 10:03 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I was replying to certain comments that have been appeared that do not seem to take into account how to form a basis of proof, and others that are just shitty for shittiness sake.

To repeat what MSTPT and others have already pointed out a bunch of times in this thread, this reads as if you're not at all interested in the many more comments that are helpful, and perpetuates the view that you approach threads, and in particular anything challenging your assumptions, as arguments rather than discussions to be hashed out. If you want to have a discussion, then ignore it, or if it's particularly egregious, flag it and move on (FIAMO).

I've seen "likes" function pretty exactly like upvotes on reddit. It's a scoring system for points, usually devolving to has the snarkiest comeback rather than who provides a good argument. I'm not sure I want to start an argument over this, but this is one of those "obvious on its face things." Go into any thread with 100+ comments and tell me "likes" aren't a way of picking sides.

Again, you're assuming something is obvious when it's really not, and that would have easily been refuted with available evidence. First of all, the system you're talking about is how some people use favorites some of the time. Do you see that link at the top that says "Popular"? Click on it to see several different ways in how favorites are used. As of the time I posted this comment, the top-favorited comments are a funny play on film director's speech, several quite moving anecdotes shared by MeFites regarding a number of topics, several (IMO excellent) pieces of advice in AskMe, one witty retort (which wasn't a comeback, but rather a succinct and accurate answer to a question), some jokes not directed at anyone, and two comments in this thread. And of that last one, there is a recent in-joke about AskMe that comes off as snarky and one that points out your commenting style and offers a good deal of helpful advice to you that is seemingly being ignored. But if you choose to only respond to the snark and refuse to respond to the advice, then it doesn't seem as if you're interested in listening to others or absorbing what they have to say.

In the end, though, if you're worried about scoring points (or others scoring them against you), it seems the best thing to do would just be to turn favorites off as has been suggested several times in this thread. If you're convinced that your comments and responses to others must be arguments and that scoring is essential to "winning" the conversation, then you're missing out on how the site works and being needlessly antagonistic.
posted by zombieflanders at 10:04 AM on June 8, 2013 [9 favorites]


"You're assuming that I am not reading the comments. I was replying to certain comments that have been appeared that do not seem to take into account how to form a basis of proof, and others that are just shitty for shittiness sake."

Sure, but putting aside any merit of those comments — I mean, assume they're meritless or have merit, I don't care — there's always going to be a few people making a few comments like this. Your reactions are being driven by those responses and you're ignoring the others.

"However, when I'm controversial against capitalism and in favor of BDSM that's perfectly OK and I get 30 upvotes, but when I'm controversial against pre-conceived notions in feminism or robots.txt or the law then I get shouted down and laughed at."

There's a lot wrapped up in how you're using the word "controversial" in that sentence. The word doesn't mean the same thing in those two clauses; the former use has the context of American culture and the latter the context of MeFi culture. Yet you see your position in both cases as similarly controversial and you expect people here to react to those two positions similarly.

The common theme in how you've explained yourself is that you're operating from a very subjective perspective that presents itself as objective. What's obvious and intuitively true to you is what you expect to be obvious and intuitively true to others. What's controversial to you, you expect to be controversial to others. When people don't conform to this, it means they've done something wrong, not you.

You don't understand how MeFi in general could be so contrarian and critical when it comes to capitalism but not similarly contrarian and critical when it comes to feminism. We're mysteriously not sheep about our Wall Street overlords, but we are sheep about our Feministing overlords.

You're evaluating this as indicating that we're just not as skeptical and analytical as you, we have some virtues but are sadly limited. And, you know, that could very well be true, in some cases. But perhaps it's true that it's you, too, who are not as skeptical and analytical as you believe, that you also have some virtues but are sadly limited.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 10:05 AM on June 8, 2013 [12 favorites]


To be fair, is there ever really a good, productive purpose for calling stuff dopey bullshit as opposed to just saying it's wrong?

If something is so wrong as to be offensive (for instance, in case someone came in here and said "come on, it's obvious that the sun revolves around the earth" or "come on, it's obvious [insert sub-group of human being here] is intellectual inferior"), calling that opinion "bullshit" may send the dual message that "not only is this belief of yours incorrect, it is actively making otherwise calm people become angry, and this is perhaps a second reason why you may wish to examine whether it is as accurate as you think."
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:08 AM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


I wholly admit that I may be not as objective as I like. But then I would want someone to come at me with a scholarly article or reasoned argument. Which in this thread, though I disagree with much of it, is doing rather well at that.

As far as turning off favorites, then I won't see them but everyone else will. I'm not sure why people think putting masking tape at the bottom of the tv is going to make the Blackhawks game not have a score.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 10:10 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


ishrinkmajeans, this place isn't a contest. It is a place to HAVE discussions, not WIN discussions. Do you understand the difference?
posted by KathrynT at 10:12 AM on June 8, 2013 [29 favorites]


It's not ABOUT the score.
posted by moody cow at 10:13 AM on June 8, 2013 [14 favorites]


Thank you! That's the point.

? The point is that you have thin skin?

Because seriously the difference between "wrong" and "dopy bullshit" is fucking ludicrous. One you say to your grandma (ok.. well perhaps some of your grandmas) and the other is casual empathic conversation with people you assume are able to handle it.

That is the point? mutters.


(protip: no one wins in a conversation, but you sure can lose)
posted by edgeways at 10:13 AM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


Favorites are not a score. None of this is a game with points. There are no winners or losers. The sooner you let go of these assumptions, the happier you will be.
posted by palomar at 10:13 AM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


no one is saying that - they're saying if the score is making you want to punch people in the face and if you could enjoy the game better if you didn't know the tally, then maybe hide that info from yourself.
posted by nadawi at 10:14 AM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


Thank you! That's the point.

Is it? Your OP said "I'm relatively new but it's very much a popularity contest where people seem unwilling to engage in discussion and let go of their sacred cows. Any input, even if I disagree with it, would be appreciated." And yet, the former has already been pointed out as a misreading of the site, while the latter has been offered in this thread dozens of times more than the snark with little sign of appreciation, and in fact has only met with increased accusations of snarkiness.

As far as turning off favorites, then I won't see them but everyone else will. I'm not sure why people think putting masking tape at the bottom of the tv is going to make the Blackhawks game not have a score.

Jesus, man, why do you care so much? This isn't a contest, nobody wins at MetaFilter. If favorites--or for that matter, the Blackhawks game--makes you so upset that you are physically distraught and/or violent, then you're going about a great many things the wrong way.
posted by zombieflanders at 10:15 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


I understand the difference and I am in favor of having discussions over winning arguments. Your insinuation that I'm not is insulting to me and seems a defacto way of calling me an idiot. My point is that having a scoring system, even if some users can turn it off, makes the site turn into a contest, which is unfortunate.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 10:15 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


As far as turning off favorites, then I won't see them but everyone else will. I'm not sure why people think putting masking tape at the bottom of the tv is going to make the Blackhawks game not have a score.

"Everyone else" will not, because plenty of people have them turned off too.

If you're seeing favorites as analogous to a score, if you're seeing metafilter discussions as analogous to a game, that's a bad place from which to frame your commenting.

Seriously, if favorites are an issue for you, try turning them off for a bit and then judge how it works.
posted by cjelli at 10:16 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


I'm not sure why people think putting masking tape at the bottom of the tv is going to make the Blackhawks game not have a score.

ISMJ, I disagree with most of what you have said in this thread, but in my opinion your comment above is very much correct; however, I have been tilting that particular windmill for as long as there have been favourites, and I can assure you it won't change. It's mathowie's site and he is very much in favour of favourites.

However, that being said, unlike other sites, the number of favourites does not raise a post or comment up at the expense of others in the sense that it isn't coded into the site.
posted by terrapin at 10:16 AM on June 8, 2013


ISMJ?

You may be new here, but keep this up and I'm not sure how old you are going to get.
posted by timsteil at 10:17 AM on June 8, 2013


Is that a threat of some sort?
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 10:18 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Your insinuation that I'm not is insulting to me and seems a defacto way of calling me an idiot.

When you say things like this, it comes off like you're looking for a fight. No one is trying to insult you, no one has called you any names. You're bringing that to the table yourself, because you are assuming intent in other people's words, and you are taking offense to the things you are imagining. If that's the way you're going to interact with other members here, I can guarantee you that you're going to hate every second of your time here and you'll constantly feel like you're being piled on and attacked.
posted by palomar at 10:20 AM on June 8, 2013 [15 favorites]


Ok, cool it please.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 10:20 AM on June 8, 2013


My point is that having a scoring system, even if some users can turn it off, makes the site turn into a contest, which is unfortunate.

Yes, and the disconnect you seem to be having is that it is not, in fact, a scoring system. It is a system that some people can use for scoring (as you apparently do) but that does not make it a scoring system. Maybe that's a subtle distinction, but I think it's important because what it says to me is that how you use (and how you see) favorites are both dictated by you, the user, not us, the community.
posted by cjelli at 10:20 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


You admit that as a new member you don't know how all the things work here, but then you make pronouncements about How Things Work Here, Obviously.

Do you not see this as problematic?
posted by rtha at 10:21 AM on June 8, 2013 [25 favorites]


Your insinuation that I'm not is insulting to me and seems a defacto way of calling me an idiot.

seriously, no one is calling you anything, but your insistence that they are might be a self-fulfilling prophecy.


My point is that having a scoring system, even if some users can turn it off, makes the site turn into a contest, which is unfortunate.

much like robots.txt, the mechanism that you're upset about has been in place long before you arrived on the scene and wanting to throw it all out because you don't find it useful seems a bit misguided and/or arrogant. if you don't think you can hang with the fact that metafilter has favorites, you probably won't have a good time here.
posted by nadawi at 10:22 AM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


I understand the difference and I am in favor of having discussions over winning arguments. Your insinuation that I'm not is insulting to me and seems a defacto way of calling me an idiot.

I apologize for any insult you may have taken; that was not my intent. My comment was drawn from your repeated focus on the "score" and the "upvotes," and your complete lack of engagement with any of the people before me who are giving you advice as to how we have discussions here. Until the comment I'm replying to, I don't think you've addressed the distinction once.

Now I know that you do, in fact, understand the difference, so thank you for that. My next questions would be, what do you hope to get out of your engagement with Metafilter? And are your actions currently bringing you the results that you want?
posted by KathrynT at 10:23 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Is that a threat of some sort?

what
posted by rtha at 10:23 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


I understand the difference and I am in favor of having discussions over winning arguments. Your insinuation that I'm not is insulting to me and seems a defacto way of calling me an idiot.

You just compared favorites to a sporting event with winners and losers; combined with the rest of your comments so far, how else are we supposed to your view of Metafilter? And beeteedubs: if anybody disagreeing with you or pointing out a commenting style very much in evidence is an insult or name-calling, you're massively devaluing the concepts of insults and name-calling.

My point is that having a scoring system, even if some users can turn it off, makes the site turn into a contest, which is unfortunate.

That's your interpretation, not a fact, and one not shared by everyone here.
posted by zombieflanders at 10:23 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


I guess this is my 'I am a woman and etc.' moment, but maybe this is a good time to say that I sometimes use favorites as a way of saying to myself, 'Wow, that comment was so incredibly misinformed/rude/awful/etc. that I want to come back and read it again later.'
posted by box at 10:23 AM on June 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


Your insinuation that I'm not is insulting to me and seems a defacto way of calling me an idiot.

I think you're assuming the maximum amount of offense here, and in a textual medium of course this is a recipe for flameouts and heartache.

I wonder if there's a threaded vs. unthreaded conversation style culture clash thing going on here. In an environment like Reddit you can respond to people individually, and if you feel insulted or piqued by someone you can hash that out in a fork of the conversation that doesn't necessarily derail the whole thing. On MeFi that's really not possible without coming across as belligerent.
posted by en forme de poire at 10:25 AM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


Sometimes I use favorites as a way to mark my place in a long or fast-moving thread, especially if I'm reading a thread at work and I'm about to leave for home. If I favorite the last comment I read before I closed my browser, then when I'm at home I can look at my list of favorited items, find that last comment I read, and continue reading the thread where I left off.
posted by palomar at 10:27 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


I'm not sure why people think putting masking tape at the bottom of the tv is going to make the Blackhawks game not have a score.

You jest, but at one time I seriously considered putting a piece of electrical tape over the favourite count in my own profile. After being here for ~a year, it dawned on me that someone might actually read my comments, which led to a prolonged state of anxiety over, and subsequent constant checking of, my favourite count for the positive reinforcement of "Ooh, it went up!" or the negative "Nobody loves me!". So I get having complicated feelings about favourites. I still get the occasional nervousness over favourites as an apparently subtle and charged political act that takes years to understand—illustrated perfectly above in comments re: reciprocity. Well, if favourites are supposed to be reciprocal then I am obviously a complete asshole, because I've never once looked to see who favourited a comment of mine. Saying favourites are merely a scoring system doesn't do justice to the infinite complexities of a community like this.
posted by Lorin at 10:30 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


ISMJ, if you want to acquaint yourself with some prior discussions on the variable uses of favorites, searching through prior MetaTalk posts tagged with 'favorites' is a good start. This is well-covered ground, but it's also something that people seem to often make assumptions about (see: the fact that we keep having this discussion).

There are probably some specific posts that are most germane to the split of favorites-as-endorsements vs. favorites-as-bookmakes, but I think there's some value in just seeing the sheer breadth of thought on the matter.

The very tl;dr is -- Some people use favorites as endorsements or likes. Some people use them as bookmarks. Some people use them for [insert plethora of other reasons], and it is reductionism to the point of inaccuracy to say that they're basically upvotes.
posted by cjelli at 10:31 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


and, even if favorites were used specifically and only for "i agree with this statement and i think they should win the prize" (which they aren't) they're still different from reddit upvotes because, without greasemonkey, favorites do not improve the visibility of a comment. conversations are not reordered based upon favorites. that's a huge difference (and one i'm thankful for every day).
posted by nadawi at 10:38 AM on June 8, 2013 [16 favorites]


Also, apparently I am the devil incarnate because I totally use favorites as a "+1"/"I agree"/"like" a lot of the time, but so what? You can't redeem favorites for anything. They don't affect how the thread is displayed like an upvote does on many other sites. The mods have made it very clear that favorites don't even protect comments or posts from getting deleted. (on preview, jinx, nadawi)

My point is that even if everyone used them the way ISMJ is suggesting, they would still only be a rough barometer of people's opinions, and sometimes, you know, you're just not going to sync up with that. That's just a fact of life. It's only a competition if being more aligned with MeFi's popular opinions than the other participants is super important to you. Not having a ton of favorites does not in any way prevent you from participating in a thread (as long as you aren't breaking the guidelines, but that is also orthogonal to favorites).
posted by en forme de poire at 10:38 AM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


ISMJ, the pattern that I'm noticing here with the back-and-forth between you and others in this thread is you've already made up your mind about what this site is like, what kinds of people post here, and what their ideological positions are. You also seem to be here to argue and debate with others, which might explain why you're so blithely choosing to not respond to any helpful criticism given to you and instead decide to amplify the snark by singling it out.

What are you hoping to gain from this MeTa you started, wherein you're asking how things work around here? Because it sounds more to me like you have all these presumptions about Metafilter and its users anyway, and have no desire to lurk or even engage with people who've treated you fairly.

Why is this here?
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 10:38 AM on June 8, 2013 [17 favorites]


KathrynT: ishrinkmajeans, this place isn't a contest. It is a place to HAVE discussions, not WIN discussions. Do you understand the difference?

Personally I agree with the sentiment, but Metafilter is definitely a contest for SOME people. They cruise around looking for people to unload on while staying within the rules. These "competitive" types also have airports where no planes take off or land, and their "targets" might or might not be deserving of the treatment.

That's not an indictment on Metafilter. It's just life. Same as in recreational cycling. The organizers can call it a century RIDE, but to certain people it will always be a century RACE.
posted by 99percentfake at 10:41 AM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans, there's another thing that I think you do in your comments that may be causing the reaction to your posts.

Some of your comments seem really ill-considered, to the point of sounding dumb. And while keeping in mind cortex's admonition about prior history, I think there are some even better examples of this than in the thread you raised in this MeTa post. Here are two very recent comments that, I think, are instructive about how your participation could be improved:

(1) For example, this comment you made in the Colin McGinn thread:

He should have been forced to say that he acknowledged how his words could be construed poorly and been a better philosophy professor in the future and not shit the bed. But punishing the students and university ranking out of legal cowardice is a crass move by the admins.

Side note: whenever people call out to thing being good or not based on "appropriateness" I die a little on the inside. It's like we all have to be sufficiently boring so that no one could be possibly offended ever. Ugh. There's of course a line but the appropriateness people always seem to draw it on the line of the terrible sad boring rut of the everyday. I hate hate hate it so much.


I really think that comment was trollish, it wasn't an invitation to a good-faith debate, because it was misstating the facts of the incident, attributing "cowardice" to the university administration when in fact if you had read the linked articles, you would know that McGinn resigned -- he wasn't terminated -- and all the University had done was make an inquiry and start an investigation. (How could it be "cowardice" for the university to investigate a student's complaint about sexually explicit e-mails from a professor?) This suggests you're just ignorantly lobbing comments into the thread based on what you assume happened, without reading -- which is not a good faith participation. And then you give a little speech about how this is an example of people being stuck in the boring rut of the everyday.

It's particularly infuriating for you to make such a strong statement as you "die a little on the inside" when it's clear you're not really following what happened, or, at least seeming to engage in a willfully obtuse reading of the facts. Such strong statements, combined with lack of reflection or ignorance, are very offensive to me and, I think, to many people reading the threads.

(2) Then you made a comment in the Blue is the Warmest Color thread, suggesting the art movie in question was "porn," but when you were justly called out by IAmBroom for pulling an opinion out of your ass, you admitted you had not seen the film but you had to register your opinion anyway and you dismissed all or most contemporary art-house films as boring and banal.

Question for you that I hope you will answer for us: Do you really think those comments were intelligent contributions to the threads?

I think you should spend more time reading and considering what a post is about, before lobbing your uninformed opinions into the threads. This is going to continue to cause problems for you if you don't stop, because it's kind of infuriating to have to wade through your "contrarian" viewpoints that aren't even founded on the facts of the post (such as the facts that the university didn't terminate McGinn, and that you hadn't seen the movie in question).
posted by Unified Theory at 10:41 AM on June 8, 2013 [22 favorites]


ohnoes! i'm pretty sure that en forme de poire and i just gave each other reciprocal favorites! does that mean it's time for the flogging?
posted by nadawi at 10:42 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


does that mean it's time for the flogging?

Eh, flog it and move on.
posted by cjelli at 10:44 AM on June 8, 2013 [17 favorites]


SSH NOBODY MUST KNOW OF OUR SECRET FAVORITE LAUNDERING SCHEME
posted by en forme de poire at 10:45 AM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


I'm on my way to flog you both unless you favorite this comment.
posted by donnagirl at 10:50 AM on June 8, 2013


wait - so if i don't favorite the comment, you will...
...i'll be in my bunk.
posted by nadawi at 10:52 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


See, if I favorite those comments now I'm just reinforcing MeFi's cultural norms about BDSM like a sheeple.
A baaaaad, baaaaad sheeple
posted by en forme de poire at 10:54 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


A sheeple who deserves PUNISHMENT.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 10:55 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans, there's another thing that I think you do in your comments that may be causing the reaction to your posts.

At 300 comments in, it's ok to quit piling on.

*heads outside*
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:58 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


MSPT, in my head Chris Morris said that in a fake American accent. ("They don't deserve punishment... they deserve GUNISHMENT!")
posted by en forme de poire at 10:58 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


I'd like to hear more about MeFi's cultural norms about my own pet issues. How does the site feel about '90s hip-hop, free jazz, overly-hopped beers and the black-and-gray tattoo style?
posted by box at 11:06 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Okay so what have we learned here:

You know how to use JSTOR (good skill) and Wikipedia (not a bad skill either, all in all), but it seems difficult for you to read stuff carefully when peeved. You believe the favorites on metafilter to be a "score" system while everyone else doesn't. However, you would like it rather not to be a score system, and when people call you out on not listening you think that they think you're an idiot.

We also learned that you obviously are not an idiot (as nobody ever has claimed), even if not a quite stubborn one (not sure where to put the "not" here in spite of my Classical upbringing. The more you know the less you do but what are you gonna do).

So now we've had all this, why not close this up? We've had the chance to sleep a night over it. Nothing has changed. I think all for this framework possible info has flown all possible ways now.

Also, italicizing quoted text is really how it's done in this place. It makes that people understand who said what. That simple.
posted by Namlit at 11:07 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


How does the site feel about '90s hip-hop, free jazz, overly-hopped beers and the black-and-gray tattoo style?

Love it, hate it, delicious, ambivalent.
posted by nathancaswell at 11:09 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


box there is no such thing as an overly hopped beer. You can take my word on this because I am a beer drinker.
posted by headnsouth at 11:09 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


my guess would have been pro, undecided, bimodal, con

can only be solved by FAVORITE DEATH MATCH
posted by en forme de poire at 11:10 AM on June 8, 2013


It's not about scoring points

That's hilarious.
posted by averageamateur at 11:12 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Can I just give box and headnsouth all the hops from all my beers?
posted by cooker girl at 11:13 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


You're looking for Zima then?
posted by edgeways at 11:15 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Metafilter notes a significant distinction between posting that someone is saying something that is dopey made up bullshit and calling them a dope who makes up bullshit,

corb: To be fair, is there ever really a good, productive purpose for calling stuff dopey bullshit as opposed to just saying it's wrong?

That's not what was happening here. But if you prefer you could probably read that as: Metafilter notes a significant distinction between posting that someone is saying something that is wrong, and calling the poster 'wrong' as a person.
posted by Too-Ticky at 11:16 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


You believe the favorites on metafilter to be a "score" system while everyone else doesn't

This is incorrect. There a good number of us who believe it is a scoring system, but most of us have given up on trying to do anything about it. If they were truly a bookmarking-only system they wouldn't need to be displayed next to each comment. They would only be available to view on individual profile.

Yes, different people use them for different reason, but saying that "everyone else doesn't" use it as a scoring system is just not true.
posted by terrapin at 11:17 AM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


Hey now, a beer doesn't have to be highly hopped to be beer. I love good beer, but I dislike the current trend of ALL THE HOPS!!! There are other flavor profiles out there, folks, and just because someone doesn't like their hoppiness turned up to 11 doesn't mean they like to drink swill.
posted by KathrynT at 11:17 AM on June 8, 2013 [9 favorites]


maybe this is a good time to say that I sometimes use favorites as a way of saying to myself, 'Wow, that comment was so incredibly misinformed/rude/awful/etc. that I want to come back and read it again later.'

Well that would explain why I have so many favourites...
posted by mazola at 11:18 AM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


Yes, different people use them for different reason, but saying that "everyone else doesn't" use it as a scoring system is just not true.

Well... yes, it is true. You just said it yourself. Different people use favorites for different reasons, so if "everyone else" = everyone who is not me personally, then yes, everyone else does not use favorites as a scoring system. I'm not sure why that's hard to grasp.
posted by palomar at 11:20 AM on June 8, 2013


saying that "everyone else doesn't" use it as a scoring system is just not true

Sure sure. Will use a finer brush next time. Historian's dilemma...
posted by Namlit at 11:21 AM on June 8, 2013


Nice humblebrag, person with a lot more favorites than me (he says, a single tear falling into his overly-hopped beer, as a first-year violin student plays a faint and wobbly version of "All By Myself")
posted by en forme de poire at 11:24 AM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


overly hopped beers taste like feet. and not sexy feet. gross feet. i'm with KathrynT - i enjoy good beers, but i hope this current trend falls by the wayside.
posted by nadawi at 11:26 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Two things:

1) You may be used to being the smartest person in the room in your day-to-day life. That will almost never be true here. Proceeding as if you are the smartest person in the room is a fast path to being pointed out as an idiot.

2) LURK MOAR

3) I see they've disabled the blink tag. SHAME! SHAME! SHAME! MATHOWIE!
posted by klangklangston at 11:28 AM on June 8, 2013 [9 favorites]


nadawi.. Now we must fight!

Nah nah... Different strokes for different folks.



(Man, how -did- that show name ever get approved?)
posted by edgeways at 11:31 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


You're looking for Zima then?

KathrynT said it more eloquently than I could, but no. Not Zima. Just not ALL THE HOPS.

Also: big fan of cider.
posted by cooker girl at 11:33 AM on June 8, 2013


klangklangston - i think you've disabled the blink tag on your browser cuz you are blinking away over here (NOT A EUPHEMISM!).
posted by nadawi at 11:34 AM on June 8, 2013


cooker girl, there are some excellent hopped ciders being made up here in Vermont. Not hop bombs like imperial IPAs, just lightly hopped ciders. I am not a cider/cyder fan usually, but i am very much enjoying the lightly hopped ones coming out.
posted by terrapin at 11:41 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Most browsers now don't support the blink tag. Mainly Firefox, and they're dropping it, too.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 11:41 AM on June 8, 2013


klangklangston - i think you've disabled the blink tag on your browser

The browsers themselves have one by one been quietly dropping support for the blink tag for quite a while now; I'm pretty sure that no current major browser still supports it.
posted by ook at 11:41 AM on June 8, 2013


Apparently Firefox supports it, because that thing is blinking like a motherfucker right now on my screen.
posted by MoonOrb at 11:42 AM on June 8, 2013 [11 favorites]


terrapin, do you happen to know the breweries? Because I am very interested in what you've said and I have a fantastic wine/beer/etc store guy who will order pretty much anything I ask for.
posted by cooker girl at 11:43 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


*exhales*

A n00b of 3 weeks manages to get noticed, among the thousand or so voices that clamour daily. Even by #1.

Welcome to the PleasureDome, its all the way down from here on forward, imho.

If you're truly reading, and this post was in good faith, then here are some further helpful databits that may assist you, as you seek to decide whether your $5 was a lost cause or worthwhile investment with exponential returns over the years.

1. Members with a big yellow STAFF next to their handles are official Moderators of this site. One of them owns this place. You are a guest.

2. Metafilter skews older means that most of us here, particularly now in this thread, are old enough to be your parents or grandparents. I say this because the constant seething rage (I noticed you myself in one of the "eek, surveillance" threads) seems to imply fresh spurts of growth hormones and initial bursts of testosterone.

3. This community - particularly the blue website - tends toward articulate, intelligent, considered crafting of comments. I won't use the word argumentation here because I suspect that's quite redundant. There is a vibe to the posts and the subsequent conversations that is perhaps at odds with your style. A challenge of fit, as many have already noted.

4. You are NEW. Have you never experienced being new somewhere? In a group? Do you wait to read a room as you enter it or do you barge into stranger's homes and shout and scream at the entire party, chugging away without hearing a word of caution or advice or, even, introductions to the rest of the guests?

5. The sad part is that you will hate us and grab the seething hatred crown from eyeballkid, and you've barely been here long enough to get to know us or figure out how to ease yourself into this community.

When I started reading this thread, I was going to offer you advice on how the site worked, as many many others have already done... but by the time I got to this place (showing the last comment as nadawi's ) I gave up on you. That is sad. Very sad.

What brought you to this site?

What do you hope to find here?

For the biggest thing about this place, at least for me, is that its a community, and one that cares, tends towards understanding and dialogue, more often than not, pulls together to care for others in need, and offers intelligence, spam free, bot free, crap free playground space for the over thinkers of the world.

Is this what you're seeking?

If so, learn to step back and listen to us. At least to those with STAFF against their names, if no one else.

If its not too late for you and hopefully we'll all forget about this thread eventually.

.
posted by infini at 11:43 AM on June 8, 2013 [28 favorites]


Most browsers now don't support the blink tag. Mainly Firefox, and they're dropping it, too.

NO, you are WRONG> It is blinking away blinkety blink on my firefox. SO there.
posted by infini at 11:48 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


As far as turning off favorites, then I won't see them but everyone else will. I'm not sure why people think putting masking tape at the bottom of the tv is going to make the Blackhawks game not have a score.

Speaking as one of the very very few users who has favorites turned off completely, I find it helps me keep out of the scoring frame of mind. People may be using favorites for either bookmarking or approval but in the end it doesn't matter: bookmarking is as much a recognition of the 'worthiness' of a comment as anything else.

Not knowing what comments attracted attention keeps me from viewing the whole thread through that lens. I approach every comment equally and what attracts my attention attracts my attention. Perhaps someone with more discipline than I can see a comment with 94 favorites and not think it has extra weight and meaning to the community, but I have yet to meet them.

So I recommend to you (and everyone else for that matter) to turn off favorites. Doing so will not prevent you from using them as bookmarks, it will just remove their constant corrosive effect as a comment popularity contest.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 11:48 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


"klangklangston - i think you've disabled the blink tag on your browser cuz you are blinking away over here (NOT A EUPHEMISM!).''

Wow, you're right. It's a Chrome thing, apparently.

I'M SORRY MATHOWIE!
posted by klangklangston at 11:48 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


I have photographs to share and also some recipes.

/passes out with fever
posted by infini at 11:48 AM on June 8, 2013


NO, you are WRONG> It is blinking away blinkety blink on my firefox. SO there.

enjoy it while it lasts.
posted by ook at 11:50 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Speaking as one of the very very few users who has favorites turned off completely

WRONG AGAIN. I have them turned OFF too, Tell Me No Lies.
posted by infini at 11:50 AM on June 8, 2013


Here is an article with some examples.

I will need to check and get back with you (I BOOKMARKED your comment as a reminder) about Vermont brands. I need to check with my colleague about which ones distribute outside of Vermont.
posted by terrapin at 11:51 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


At the risk of a derail, referencing primary research such as JSTOR is a very poor way to back up a claim such as libido variation by gender/sex, because research output is a very precise measurement of a very small part of a field, and when we're trying to enlighten ourselves in a recreational manner by sharing opinions on subjects, we're painting with far broader brushstrokes than that. Far better to back up your argument by linking to a good blog article by a blogger who sees the subject in the same way as you.

The other thing about academic research is that one single paper pretty much necessarily won't reflect the consensus in the field, because there's no point to perfectly repeating the consensus opinion. Basically, saying "here is a fact" is very rarely valid.

For example, it is a fact that the car I drove 500 miles in a few weeks ago gets 67.3 mpg. I got about 55 mpg from it over the course of that weekend. Doesn't make the official mpg figure wrong, it just means that even for a simple thing such as that, when real life comes into the equation, things become more nuanced.

It's an important lesson to learn: mostly, other people aren't wrong, they're just right in a different way to you.
posted by ambrosen at 11:51 AM on June 8, 2013 [10 favorites]


Whether a beer is overly hopped must surely be subjective, yes? I have not yet met one, though I'm sure they exist. My favorites are Racer 5 and Racer X - for those who have had them, are they "overly hopped", in your opinions?

(If so, yay, more for me!)
posted by rtha at 11:52 AM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Metafilter is just a mean place, and becomes a little more so every day....

I'm really surprised that anyone who's been on the site since 2006 would assert this.
posted by Greg Nog


Yeah, well I think it's true. Metafilter was always a snarky place. But it didn't use to be so PC and it didn't use to entail such a hectoring, shaming, bullying tone on the subjects of gender and sexuality, very specifically. Of course some would say it was a boyzone back then too.

Precisely because I have been here that long, I feel confident in my own impression that the discourse here is both less open-minded and freewheeling, and more PC and policed for cultural conformity to a narrower ideological spectrum of views on several major topics.

I'm sorry if you disagree. It's a question of opinion, not factually decidable by snarky comment or the usual sneering putdown of dissenting voices.

Many who have left or gone silent have said the same thing in the last two years especially, coincident with the vast expansion of moderation and the emergence of a certain very vocal group of deputy mods.

And my point also asserted metafilter has always been mean. It's just meaner now than ever. And the over-moderation makes it worse.
posted by spitbull at 11:53 AM on June 8, 2013 [10 favorites]


ok, hopped beef actually sounds delicious.
posted by nadawi at 11:54 AM on June 8, 2013


I'm now hopping over to the fridge to get a beer. Does that count?
posted by Namlit at 11:54 AM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


for some of us, "freewheeling" was hostile and mean while "pc" is kinder and more welcoming to a larger set of lived experiences.
posted by nadawi at 11:57 AM on June 8, 2013 [56 favorites]


other people aren't wrong, they're just right in a different way to you

I just love this. I want this on the next batch of t shirts. I want bumper stickers, fridge magnets and a button too.

Heck, just put it in the FAQ.
posted by infini at 11:57 AM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


Favoriting datapoint: when I turned off favorites, my engagement with, and participation in, MeFi and MeTa threads increased by an order of magnitude. For people (like me) who tend to get irritated at the "scorekeeping" facet of favoriting, this may be an easy, effective improvement.

I enhanced my MetaFilter experience by trying this one crazy trick!
posted by MoonOrb at 11:57 AM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


"My favorites are Racer 5 and Racer X - for those who have had them, are they "overly hopped", in your opinions?"

I haven't had Racer X to my memory, but Racer 5 isn't particularly overhopped. Stone does a lot more overhopped stuff, especially with their variations on the Bastard line. They can end up pretty unbalanced, with the hops taking over all of the malt and yeast flavors.
posted by klangklangston at 11:57 AM on June 8, 2013


damnit! you fixed your typo - now i'm the only one talking about hopped beef. stupid edit window (i don't mean it - i love the edit window).
posted by nadawi at 11:57 AM on June 8, 2013


God. I "scored" two points in two seconds. Hoppety hop hopperton.
posted by Namlit at 11:58 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


"If one favorites your text, one reasonably expects a quantity of Earl Grey tea (loose, not bagged)"

Since I drink a pot of Earl Grey every morning, I've been curious if anyone aside from Twinnings does it even half as well. The Twinnings boxes are too small; I go through them too fast, but the only other ones I've tried (Assad) have been kinda butt.
posted by klangklangston at 11:58 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Whether a beer is overly hopped must surely be subjective, yes? I have not yet met one, though I'm sure they exist. My favorites are Racer 5 and Racer X - for those who have had them, are they "overly hopped", in your opinions?

(If so, yay, more for me!)


They are too hoppy for me, yes. I propose a trade. In my experience, a lot of people who love super hoppy beers are not all that into stouts. So if you are one of those, you can have all my hoppy beers in exchange for all your stouts. That should keep us busy for a while.
posted by MissySedai at 11:58 AM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


rtha, Race 5 and X are not particularly hoppy in my opinion. In fact, I find Racer 5 rather sweet and malty.

The hop bombs are more like Sierra Nevada Torpedo, Sierra Nevada Hoptimum, etc. The latter uses wet hops. I like them, but I agree that the trend toward overly hopped beers is getting annoying. A few years back there was a hop shortage, and it seems that now that there isn't some brewers are going crazy trying to be recognised in a crowded craft beer field.

That said, there also seems to be an immersing trend of session beers, lower alcohol (but not always lower hops) designed to let one have more than one. Along with the hop bombing trend, imperial/double and triple IPAs have been the rage the last few years.
posted by terrapin at 11:59 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Sorry I corrected that, nadawi. Shoulda left it!
posted by rtha at 11:59 AM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


meh, and shenanigans. Other people are not right, they're just wrong in a different way to you.
posted by Namlit at 11:59 AM on June 8, 2013


"And my point also asserted metafilter has always been mean. It's just meaner now than ever. And the over-moderation makes it worse."

Counterpoint is that women are no longer driven off the site in droves, since that's the main "over-moderation," cutting down the sexist bullshit that used to be rife here.

(Are you Fourcheesemac's roommate? Area of study and attitudes on feminism seem pretty congruent.)
posted by klangklangston at 12:00 PM on June 8, 2013 [10 favorites]


Klangklangston, have you tried Harney & Sons?
posted by ook at 12:00 PM on June 8, 2013


Oh, I do love the Torpedo - I'm not drinking beer regularly these days, so I'd forgotten it.

Also, today is the last day of my vacation and the first time in days I've had to wear long pants, and it sucks.
posted by rtha at 12:00 PM on June 8, 2013


"Klangklangston, have you tried Harney & Sons?"

Nope. Is it worth a look?
posted by klangklangston at 12:01 PM on June 8, 2013


I agree with klang, Stone seems to relish their position with beers with lots of hops, even including palate wrecker and ruinination in their brand names.
posted by terrapin at 12:01 PM on June 8, 2013


coincident with the vast expansion of moderation and the emergence of a certain very vocal group of deputy mods.

We have no deputy mods. If you want to complain about someone, it makes a lot more sense to be plain about who you're talking about than to go this euphemistic route.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:02 PM on June 8, 2013 [12 favorites]


Many who have left or gone silent have said the same thing in the last two years especially, coincident with the vast expansion of moderation and the emergence of a certain very vocal group of deputy mods.

Hey, "deputy mods", I like that. Sounds a lot nicer than "ass-kisser".
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:02 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


I enhanced my MetaFilter experience by trying this one crazy trick!

but will it get me more blinkety blink the way I want it?
posted by infini at 12:03 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Hey, "deputy mods", I like that. Sounds a lot nicer than "ass-kisser".

I was just thinking the same thing!
posted by terrapin at 12:03 PM on June 8, 2013


"A certain group" is just bound to be based on shitty sociology (no matter the intent or content of a remark that uses that phrase).
posted by Namlit at 12:03 PM on June 8, 2013


srsly I somehow woke up in an alternate dimension where everyone suddenly started saying "x is different to y" instead of the much more sensible "different from" and I have no idea where that started or why

Nope. Is it worth a look?

My wife is the tea drinker in the house but she swears by it.
posted by ook at 12:05 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


"A Certain Ratio" is bound to be based on funky post punk (no matter the content of the link).
posted by klangklangston at 12:05 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Speaking of teas, a few of the homebrewers in my club are making excellent earl grey beers.
posted by terrapin at 12:07 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's just a long-standing (and with 'than' vs. 'to' significantly regional) variation thing, ook.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:07 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


...suddenly started saying "x is different to y" instead of the much more sensible "different from" and I have no idea where that started or why

I started to have the same feeling, and there the edit window blipped out. This is the way language is crafted. Let's go on with it, then...
posted by Namlit at 12:07 PM on June 8, 2013


Oh god the very thought of tea flavored beer makes me gag a little

Let beer be beer
posted by ook at 12:07 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Metafilter was always a snarky place. But it didn't use to be so PC and it didn't use to entail such a hectoring, shaming, bullying tone on the subjects of gender and sexuality, very specifically. Of course some would say it was a boyzone back then too.


I've been around here as a member since 2007, but I lurked for a few years before that, so I think in total I've been reading here since 2004 or so. And from where I stand, the MetaFilter we have currently is far better than the one that was snarkier and more of a boyzone. I didn't want to participate in the version that you preferred. I'm surprised that you call the old MeFi more open-minded, because in my experience it was the opposite of that.

It sucks that some members have left because they don't like the moderation. But there are plenty of other places on the internet where they can have the "freewheeling" unmoderated discussions they want to have, which more often than not have really just been excuses to be total jerks to other people. I'm glad this place doesn't tolerate that. I'm sorry that the absence of that kind of atmosphere is a disappointment to some users, but then, those users know where the door is, metaphorically speaking.
posted by palomar at 12:08 PM on June 8, 2013 [37 favorites]


Harney and Sons and Upton are the two favorite sources for fancy tea amongst the tea drinkers I know (and am).
posted by KathrynT at 12:08 PM on June 8, 2013


"My wife is the tea drinker in the house but she swears by it."

They're pricier than Twinnings up until the bulk 1# bag, which I might risk $20 on. Thanks for the tip!
posted by klangklangston at 12:08 PM on June 8, 2013


how about beer flavored tea makers. Now there's a sight to behold.
posted by Namlit at 12:08 PM on June 8, 2013


Let beer be beer

But pumpkin ale.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:09 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Ugh, no.
posted by klangklangston at 12:09 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Yes, definitely endorsing Harney for Earl Grey. They have it bagged and loose (by the pound) and have several different kinds. (Now if only they would get black jasmine tea back in stock, my life would be complete.)
posted by gudrun at 12:11 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


but chocolate and coffee stouts...
posted by nadawi at 12:11 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


...coincident with the vast expansion of moderation...

?? Is this an NSA thing? Does Mathowie have to report to Obama every morning at 06:30 with a dossier of 'notable' MetaFilter activity from the previous 24 hours? If you favorite reciprocally on here, is that deemed suspicious enough to warrant further governmental investigation? Should we be told? Would we be told? Why does my beer taste of tea? Why does my tea taste of beer?
posted by Wordshore at 12:11 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


There is no backdoor to Metafilter. Any data mathowie provides to the federal government is done in accordance with applicable law. All is well. Move along, nothing to see here.
posted by MoonOrb at 12:13 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


"but chocolate and coffee stouts..."

Can actually be made with roasted malts. I'm not saying that adding coffee or chocolate is a cheat (I'm not a purist) but some of the best chocolate stouts I've had have come from careful malt roasts.
posted by klangklangston at 12:13 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


MetaFilter: Home Sweet (dysfunctional) Home
posted by mazola at 12:14 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


oh yes - i was just hoping we weren't throwing the baby out with the bathwater in "just let beer be beer" because, mmmmmmm. stouts.
posted by nadawi at 12:15 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Let beer be beer

You are welcome to drink all the German lagers you want. I prefer creativity. Full disclosure, that is a link to an article about a beer a friend and I brewed.... which is still aging.
posted by terrapin at 12:15 PM on June 8, 2013


You can prefer creativity all you want. I prefer beer.
posted by ook at 12:16 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


A Comprehensive Enough Guide To How People Use Favorites Around Here

- Little Caesar's Lunch Buffet %: "Yeah, I use them as upvotes"
- Denny's Grand Slam %: "I use them as upvotes and also as 'nods' when somebody's acknowledged me in some way"
- Pho %: "I think I use them as bookmarks, but I really use them as upvotes. I also paint all my books in yellow highlighter"
- Triple Enchilada Special %: "I think I use them as bookmarks, but I'm a digital (or actual) hoarder and also I torrent things every day I'll never ever see or listen to"
- Chipotle Burrito %: "I use them as upvotes to participate in internet fights, but maintaining a fog of plausible deniability is crucial because Passive Aggressiveness Is Very Important To Me"
- Carnitas Taco %: "I use them as upvotes, but I am a dancing fuckin' rainbow of human experience and You Can't Pin Me Down" (With Salsa Verde: "occasionally I will favorite things that I don't like just to back myself up on this, not that anybody's looking, just to kinda reinforce my self-image")
- Health Bar %: "I use them as bookmarks, which means they are upvotes that I am stingy about"
- Solitary Skittle On The Sidewalk %: "I use them as bookmarks. I see an idea I want to come back to in my thought process (as relates to other things I am doing). I come back to it. When I am done with it, I usually delete it to make room for the next useful thought I find"
- Single Nerd Under The Couch Cushion %: "I use them as bookmarks as above, but I can process an enormous amount of them and come back to them regularly. Also, for example, I can usually remember which page out of 200 a particularly important favorite of mine is located in my list"
- Grain Of Sugar %: "As above, but I construct my own programs to process my favorites and organize them according to a variety of metrics depending on my intellectual needs at the moment. Excuse me, I have to get back to my Rosicrucian conspiracy theory, but thanks"
posted by furiousthought at 12:16 PM on June 8, 2013 [9 favorites]


I'm sorry if you disagree. It's a question of opinion, not factually decidable by snarky comment or the usual sneering putdown of dissenting voices.

Many who have left or gone silent have said the same thing in the last two years especially


It makes sense that people who left would be disproportionately likely to think the site's gone downhill.

To me, the place seems pretty much the same as it's always been, and I've been here since late 2004. Actually, when I look at old threads, I notice more random noise, but not that the threads are politically more lockstep in any respect.
posted by escabeche at 12:20 PM on June 8, 2013


No one is trying to insult you, no one has called you any names.

While ishrinkmajeans behavior is way outside of site (and social) norms and comes across as not really getting how things go here (if not actively resisting that), this is not entirely clear to me.

elizardbits's comment:

How about you look up "dopey made up bullshit perpetuated by the patriarchy" anywhere on the internets, bro.

Looks like name-calling to me. In the context of discussion of "the patriarchy" etc. "bro" seems like name-calling to me, not calling ishrinkmajeans, "brother."
posted by Jahaza at 12:21 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


You can prefer creativity all you want. I prefer beer.

Can you define what "beer" is to you? Do you only drink one brand? I am serious. I am curious what you mean.

As a long-time brewer, I have found lots of different styles of beers I enjoy, some that don't even have hops in it (aka, gruits).

Saying you prefer beer is like saying you prefer music when someone says they like ________ genre.
posted by terrapin at 12:21 PM on June 8, 2013


""I think I use them as bookmarks, but I'm a digital (or actual) hoarder and also I torrent things every day I'll never ever see or listen to""

Urg. That's a bit too close to the mark for me. (Excuse me, I have a huge ChrisGoesRock torrent that I now feel obligated to listen to…)
posted by klangklangston at 12:22 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


It is a matter of opinion and perspective what the State of Metafilter is. Unless, of course, someone opens up a poll in Google Docs or something, after which Free Speech Crusaders will be able to link to it instead of making baseless, sweeping assertions about the community and its mindset.

Looks like name-calling to me.

No, it's elizardbits saying the opinion is dopey made-up bullshit. Which is not the same thing as calling ISMJ anything, apart from "bro", which takes a lot of effort to take offense to.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:24 PM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


Which is not the same thing as calling ISMJ anything, apart from "bro", which takes a lot of effort to take offense to.

So are you claiming that "bro" was meant here in the non-derogatory sense? Or that name-calling is ok when it's only mild name-calling?
posted by Jahaza at 12:30 PM on June 8, 2013


I seem to remember if upon exiting the site a user threatens the Metafilter powers that be with a lawsuit - no matter how baseless - then they'll gladly refund the $5. The Abe Lincoln can then be used towards something more fitting to his or her lifestyle, like a paying for parking outside a porn theater or a six pack of non-alcoholic beer.
posted by item at 12:31 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


It looked like name-calling to me, too, but the answer to "what do you do when someone calls you a name" is:

(1) ignore it
(2) FIAMO
(3) use the contact form
(4) check yourself and see if maybe it's your asshole behavior that put you in that position to start with

I think that elizardbits could have stated her disagreement in a way that was nicer and more constructive, but I also think that it didn't really violate community norms. If ismj is just looking for people to say, "Yeah, elizardbits wasn't that nice about it," I'm okay saying "she could have been nicer, but no big deal, see (1) through (4) above."
posted by MoonOrb at 12:31 PM on June 8, 2013


I don't know why, but I read this whole thread through and the only thing that keeps coming back into my head is some lyrics from Box of Rain

Walk out of any doorway, feel your way, feel your way like the day before.
Maybe you'll find direction,
Around some corner where it's been waiting to meet you.
What do you want me to do, to watch for you while you are sleeping?
The please don't be surprised when you find me dreaming too.


We must all find our way or maybe know,

...it's just a box of rain, I don't know who put it there,
Believe it if you need it, or leave it if you dare.


Maybe I am reading way too much into this or not enough.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 12:33 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


So are you claiming that "bro" was meant here in the non-derogatory sense?

So, I'm surrounded by teenaged boys and young adult men pretty much most of the time, what with sons in the house and their cohort. They address each other as "bro", "dude", "brah", "broseph", and suchlike all the time.

I read that in much the same way it's used around here - as a casual form of address, not name calling.
posted by MissySedai at 12:35 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


but I also think that it didn't really violate community norms.

I think that's true, but partly because the actual community norms (some mild name-calling is allowed) are different from the sometimes stated community norms (name-calling is not allowed).
posted by Jahaza at 12:35 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Well and then there's also the old (Toyota commercial) mechanism "you asked for it you got it". Not maybe a really grand way to conduct a discussion, to give someone the names he was thinking he already got, but in that framework "bro" strikes me a something relatively minor nevertheless.
posted by Namlit at 12:35 PM on June 8, 2013


So, I'm surrounded by teenaged boys and young adult men pretty much most of the time, what with sons in the house and their cohort. They address each other as "bro", "dude", "brah", "broseph", and suchlike all the time.

While criticizing each other for supporting patriarchy?
posted by Jahaza at 12:35 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Can you define what "beer" is to you?

I was mostly just trying to zing back at you a bit, because your "well I prefer creativity" stung a little, and felt kinda nose-in-the-air.

I like lots of different kinds of beer, mostly depending on context and the temperature. Not generally a fan of overly hoppy flavors, and not generally a fan of Beer With Random Flavors In It, which most often taste to me like gee this would've been nice beer if they hadn't put this random extra flavor in it. Also based on the last three times I've ventured into discussing beer on this website, I should probably avoid discussing beer on this website, because apparently I mesh really poorly with people who are really into beer.
posted by ook at 12:36 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'd just like to claim my place on Team Stout with MissySedai and nadawi.
posted by soundguy99 at 12:36 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


While criticizing each other for supporting patriarchy?

So it can't be casual if you're criticizing someone? I'll be sure to let them know that "Broseph, you are out of your fucking mind" is totally out of line.

Seriously, dude, WTH?
posted by MissySedai at 12:38 PM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


See, I would drink fermented hop water because I love hops so much and I really can't abide stouts, and I usually feel like the odd one out when it comes to MeFi beer tastes.
posted by Lutoslawski at 12:39 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Jahaza-what I'm saying, and not sure if we agree on this point or not-is that Yes, it looked like name calling, in the sense that the 'bro' appended to the end appeared to be perjorative in that context, but that name-calling, to same extent, is allowed here. That bit you quoted about "nobody called you any names," to my mind wasn't 100% accurate, because I can agree that 'bro' was a form of name-calling in this instance. On the other hand, the "nobody called you any names" comment was, in its spirit, pretty dead-on, since I took it to refer more to the comments in this thread rather than the elizardbits' comment.

In any case, my view is that MetaFilter is a place where you can call someone 'bro' or something similar, even as a putdown, and it's not going to flaunt the rules. If you're looking to nitpick on the idea that "hey, some people say you can't call anyone names here, but Look! 'bro' in this situation was namecalling, so actually you can call people names, just not super super mean ones," then that's fair enough I guess.
posted by MoonOrb at 12:44 PM on June 8, 2013


Earl Grey in the morning, peppermint tea (to assist the bowels in their regular function, and blood pressure) in the afternoon, camomile in the evening (to assist in winding down and sleep) is my usual tea routine.

I have never consumed, nor heard of, tea-flavored beer. The world is sometimes a strange and terrifying place.
posted by Wordshore at 12:46 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


If calling someone "bro" is now name-calling that gets one's hackles up, I'd say elizardbit's accusations about assumptions made on patriarchy were pretty on the nose.
posted by zombieflanders at 12:47 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Peppermint Tea??? Oh what a world, what a world.
posted by Namlit at 12:47 PM on June 8, 2013


While criticizing each other for supporting patriarchy?

Adding "bro" to criticising an idea someone put forward can be taken as being casual, as being condescending, as being familiar, and so on.

But yes, let's put aside the fact that the guy was expressing a regressive idea about the female libido, derailing the thread, and mansplaining how female desire works - the REAL issue here is the ambiguous use of "bro" at the end of a perfectly valid criticism.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:48 PM on June 8, 2013 [43 favorites]


On the other hand, the "nobody called you any names" comment was, in its spirit, pretty dead-on, since I took it to refer more to the comments in this thread rather than the elizardbits' comment.

The thread's title after all is "What to do when threads result in name calling?"

Seriously, dude, WTH?

Language meaning depends on context? This is surprising?

But yes, let's put aside the fact that the guy was expressing a regressive idea about the female libido, derailing the thread, and mansplaining how female desire works - the REAL issue here is the ambiguous use of "bro" at the end of a perfectly valid criticism.

We're not limited to one issue.
posted by Jahaza at 12:49 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


We're not limited to one issue.

We're not, I just think you're blowing "bro" way out of proportion, especially in comparison to the statement elizardbits was criticizing.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:52 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


We're not, I just think you're blowing "bro" way out of proportion, especially in comparison to the statement elizardbits was criticizing.

There's a lot of comments in this thread hammering the OP for not, in fact, having been called any names.
posted by Jahaza at 12:53 PM on June 8, 2013


Love hops. Love stouts. Wheat beers are just sad. And wtf fruit beers?!
posted by headnsouth at 12:53 PM on June 8, 2013


Metafilter has always been mean. It's just meaner now than ever

Yeah, I think we disagree, because as I think a place that's more 'PC' (your word, not mine) is a place that's less mean.

I'm not the most eloquent person in the world, and, honestly, I would have a hard time explaining why I feel this way without using the word 'privilege' (my word, not yours), and I'm guessing you think that kind of talk is, like, the most hectoring, shaming, bullying thing ever, so, yeah, let's just agree to disagree on this question of opinion (both of our words).
posted by box at 12:55 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


There's a lot of comments in this thread hammering the OP for not, in fact, having been called any names.

And I see a lot of comments explaining the difference between "your idea is dumb" and "you are dumb", yet here we are. But if you think "bro" is name-calling - or at least, that it is so after being criticized - then that's your choice. To me it's like being called "my friend" when someone is arguing with you.

My point was that being called "bro" after a pretty accurate criticism of some regressive, derailing bullshit is about the mildest reaction you can expect to encounter.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:58 PM on June 8, 2013


I really don't read "bro" as referring to the colloquial meaning of the word "bro" as a noun, and I don't think the context changes that. If someone tells you "good job, chief," do you interpret that as them referring to you as a leader of a clan of peoples? I mean, it may be sarcastic, but name-calling is a real stretch.
posted by invitapriore at 1:00 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Right--seriously, who cares if "bro" is name-calling or not? If it's not, it's not, and if it is, it's the type of name-calling that is, and should be, permitted on MetaFilter.
posted by MoonOrb at 1:01 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I could overthink a plate of beans, bro.
posted by grouse at 1:02 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


Can someone end this "bro" argument before I start stabbing myself in the face with a philips screwdriver? It's right fucking there, on my desk, taunting me — comment, screwdriver, comment, screwdriver, ohchrist, this will make the pain end, you know it will, comment, just pick me up, I'm right here, comment, I want to help.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 1:02 PM on June 8, 2013 [26 favorites]


Cool story bro
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 1:02 PM on June 8, 2013 [25 favorites]


Metafilter was always a snarky place. But it didn't use to be so PC and it didn't use to entail such a hectoring, shaming, bullying tone on the subjects of gender and sexuality, very specifically. Of course some would say it was a boyzone back then too.

I think this is that thing where when feelings of comfort and stuff start to equalize the group who was formerly privileged feels like they've lost something because they can no longer say/do whatever they want. It does suck, but many people (including me) think it's worthwhile in order to raise the average level of happiness/comfort/ability to participate/whatever. Some people may feel less comfortable doing whatever they want while other people (again, me) now feel comfortable being here at all. That increases the average and helps a lot of individual people even if it's discouraging for some others. I do get that it sucks to feel like now you have to police what you say, but please know that it really does make the world happier for a lot of people and there is a reason for it beyond PCness gone amok.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 1:03 PM on June 8, 2013 [26 favorites]


I tend to call all kinds of people "bro" or "dude" or "broseph" all the time. Latest victim of this horrible name-calling: my three year old niece. So maybe that's why I didn't really view the use of the word "bro" as a major slight against ISMJ.

As for the accusation that ISMJ has been "hammered" in this thread about not being called names... I can't speak for anyone else, but I've pointed that out to him because of this specific remark he made in response to KathrynT:

Your insinuation that I'm not is insulting to me and seems a defacto way of calling me an idiot.

Nowhere in this thread has anyone called ISMJ an idiot. He took offense to KathrynT's comment and decided that there was an insinuation in the comment that he's an idiot. This is a repeated pattern. If you want to call that hammering, feel free, but then I reserve the right to think you're being more than a little ridiculous about the issue.
posted by palomar at 1:04 PM on June 8, 2013


I like you Ivan but I'm kind of curious if you'll actually stab yourself in the face with a screwdriver so part of me wants to continue this ridiculous, pedantic debate just to see how far you're willing to go.
posted by MoonOrb at 1:05 PM on June 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


There's a lot of comments in this thread hammering the OP for not, in fact, having been called any names.

By "a lot" do you mean two? Because that's all I could really find, which makes it seem like you're blowing this out of proportion in much the same way as ishrinkmajeans did when he mentioned that disagreeing with his argument was tantamount to name-calling, and for no good reason other than to be play the part of the contrarian.
posted by zombieflanders at 1:06 PM on June 8, 2013


I kind of just wanted an excuse to say "peoples," which is a word I find unaccountably hilarious. I think that might be Mitch Hedberg's fault?
posted by invitapriore at 1:06 PM on June 8, 2013


Believe me, that screwdriver is there to screw you solidly: the pain that will start...and nobody to help...or watch...

All the while, someone started a humungous thread that now keeps spinning just by itself. Great job.
posted by Namlit at 1:07 PM on June 8, 2013


Since I drink a pot of Earl Grey every morning, I've been curious if anyone aside from Twinnings does it even half as well. The Twinnings boxes are too small; I go through them too fast, but the only other ones I've tried (Assad) have been kinda butt.

Twinings does not use real bergamot (and they use very cheap tea leaves*), so if you're into that you may not care for Earl Grey made with real bergamot oil, but Upton's tea carries 20 different types of bergamot flavored tea, and they sell samples. My favorite is the Natural Earl Grey with only real bergamot, but the chocolate Earl Grey and Finest Earl Grey are also quite good.

*not that cheap tea is bad. We keep a box of Barry's around because sometimes that's exactly the kind of tea you want on a cold and drizzly morning. But tea in bags is never made with the really primo leaves.
posted by oneirodynia at 1:10 PM on June 8, 2013


I'm a bit relieved to learn that I'm not the only person who has that perverse stab-yourself instinct whenever in the presence of tools or other hardware. I can barely even look at a pair of pliers without imagining myself grabbing onto an incisor and the grinding, crunching noise it'd make as I slowly pulled and twisted, wondering whether it'd snap off or come out at the roots or just burst into shards and powder.

Excuse me, I have to go be far away from everything for a little while now
posted by ook at 1:10 PM on June 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


Even fruit beers have a place. A rich dark oak aged raspberry beer, like that one monks brew from mikeller from last year, with a nice chocolate fudge and pistachio pie is the best dessert I've had in weeks.

The last beer I made was a single malt single hop strong ale, aged for 2 years with a tiny piece of oak. The first gallon of wort was reduced to under a quart of syrup. Without adding anything else, the beer tasted of chocolate, vanilla, molasses, prunes and spice. At 13% and almost no carbonation, it is more like a port wine than a beer. One would be a fool to try and chug a pint of I while mowing the lawn.
posted by Doroteo Arango II at 1:13 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


*Hands ook a pair of needle nosed pliers, watches curiously*
posted by nubs at 1:13 PM on June 8, 2013


We keep a box of Barry's around because sometimes that's exactly the kind of tea you want on a cold and drizzly morning.

Man, we're just deprived here in the US - Barry's is the stuff I actually seek out as an improvement over stuff like Lipton and Red Rose.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 1:13 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


I've read this entire thread, during which I cannot get out of my head the image of ISMJ as a young-- first or second year college--guy who doesn't understand why his rhetorical style, with which I imagine he has had much success among his intimidated high school peers and classmates, doesn't fly in a space like Metafilter, which values exploration and discussion, and has mostly left behind the Scoring Points I Win discourse. I've met a number of similar young men over the years who believe that Devil's Advocate is a reasonable debate stance, and have that as the only card in their deck, and don't understand how conversation-killing it is and how it puts people on the defensive. It doesn't make for nuance in the exchange of ideas. And by entrenching himself behind a wall of reciprocal defensiveness, ISMJ isn't going to get much of anything out of Metafilter. What's your purpose here, ISMJ? What do you want to do? Be told that you are clever, and garner attention? Because the strategies for getting attention on Mefi are different for those which will get you attention in the college pub after class. In fact, they tend to be exactly the opposite.
posted by jokeefe at 1:17 PM on June 8, 2013 [27 favorites]


ISMJ:

I have been a member here for only 5 years. I say "only" because I feel like I am still learning how to be here. You have been a member for a few weeks and I just want to tell you that in this thread you have some of MF's most active, thoughtful, and oldest members trying to help you. Some of these folks have been participants in very difficult discussions over the years where the tone has gotten very nasty. Some have had to voluntarily disable their accounts to take a break from it all, only to return months or years later. Some have had non-voluntary time-outs imposed on them by the mods. And they are all here now trying to help you based on their deep wealth of experience. Please consider their advice. If you can't do that and continue down the path you are on, you will eventually flame out in a large ball of hell-fire. That is a certainty.
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 1:19 PM on June 8, 2013 [11 favorites]


90s hiphop: ambivalent about some, love some, hate some. Beer? Ugh, give me cider anyday. Greyscale tattoos I tend to love, and free jazz, too.
posted by jokeefe at 1:21 PM on June 8, 2013


tea derail: Adagio has a couple lovely Earl Grey teas. The "bravo" is a bit much sometimes, but the lavender is so charming that I would marry it. I think all their teas are good quality, loose and bagged.
posted by donnagirl at 1:21 PM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


Just flog it and move on.

But I thought the whole issue here was about who flogs it and how often.


Kidding aside, for those who like beers with distinct character, but with out being overly hoppy, or with artificial flavors, you can't go wrong with Belgians. Of course, there are your Trappist beers, but I've recently had a "Scaldis" tripel that was delicious. Also, the lcbo now carries Goose Island's "Matilda," which is very fine indeed. And even flavored beers do have their place. I've just finished a Stiegl "Radler" (an Austrian beer with grapefruit) and it was quite refreshing.


I've been drunk since 11 this morning


Just remember: "When you make an assumption, you make an 'ass' out of 'u' and 'mption'."
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:21 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


That is so true. I'm still getting hate mail from Mption.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 1:22 PM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


I've placed a small cloth over the screwdriver which has muffled its sweet enticement. I think I'm okay as long as I can't hear it. Or if the bro argument has ended. Either one.

Oh, look: rotary tool! What's that you said? "Cut-off wheel?"
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 1:23 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


Precisely because I have been here that long, I feel confident in my own impression that the discourse here is both less open-minded and freewheeling, and more PC and policed for cultural conformity to a narrower ideological spectrum of views on several major topics.

I have extremely mixed feelings about this.

I will acknowledge that the change you're describing is real, it's not just you. It definitely happened. Almost exactly the same thing happened to Something Awful in the same time frame.

My issue with it is that yes, although the moderation and community standards have shifted in a certain direction and with a very specific slant.

However, while I was initially annoyed, I realized after a while that this site, and some others I regularly visit have just kind of grown up. I can't escape the feeling(echoed by others above, I notice) that those who left because of the "shift in policy" either wanted to be a tiresome category of asshole, or just didnt give it a fair shake.

The type of stuff that used to fly here, on SA, and still flies on other sites(like reddit, especially reddit.. Ugh) while fun and "freewheeling" IS shitty and alienating to a lot of people.

I've yet to hear a really compelling argument about it that actually presents a good point as to why its bad, or more importantly(IMO) that doesn't come off as "it's so unfair that mom made me stop hitting Sally!".

This site, and a lot of popular sites absolutely were a boyzone, or as some shitty redditors quipped, a "male safe space". And it reminded me of the q continuum in Star Trek TNG. How can you go up and down the road and play the pinball machine that many times without getting bored?

At a certain point, when you're allowing things to go on in a community that alienate lots of people or just make them uncomfortable or disappointed(and then pile on the people who speak up, which has happened EVERYWHERE I've ever regularly participated, don't pretend it didn't happen here) you're creating a less interesting community.

You talk about how many people left because of the change. How many people can you imagine leaving because of the way it was before? Or never joining in the first place? Because I'd imagine it was quite a few. And I'd rather the people who were upset with things like the Rebecca Watson thread and the resulting MeTa were gone than the people who were upset by the behavior before it, and even in that FPP.

If you don't like the changes, there's plenty of places(like reddit!) where you can go and find plenty of like minded individuals who share your freewheeling dream.

I, myself, am tired of that shit though. If you let a web community be freewheeling it seems to always turn in to a room full of dudes talking over and down to everyone who doesn't agree with them. And that shits tiresome.
posted by emptythought at 1:24 PM on June 8, 2013 [47 favorites]


Speaking as one of the very very few users who has favorites turned off completely

I have them turned off too. I don't know that it's "very few" or that we can know the number at any moment - can we? And I was, and remain, a big proponent of their existence, but that doesn't mean you need to look at them in the thread as you participate. I find it a lot easier to concentrate on what's being said without seeing them by default.
posted by Miko at 1:24 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


bro is pronounced brew.

there, problem solved.

now, onto the next nitpick ..... who was grumbling about too much stout? there is NO such thing. So there etc.

And another thing... peppermint tea is wonderful. All day long. With ellipses!
posted by infini at 1:24 PM on June 8, 2013


I'm a little teacup, where is my stout?
posted by zombieflanders at 1:27 PM on June 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


Nthing that life is too damned short to look at favorites. Turning them off has massively improved the quality of my Metafilter experience.

Also, this seems a good time to bring up the three-repeats rule. If you find yourself hammering on the same point repeatedly, it's probably time to take a break from the thread. It doesn't matter if the rest of the participants in the thread are radically wrong. If you're repeating yourself again and again, you're not convincing people, just annoying them. (Generic "you"; I've been there plenty!)
posted by immlass at 1:32 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Yes Adagio is awesome. Also, IME, if you live in NJ the standard shipping gets there in about a day.
posted by en forme de poire at 1:34 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Now I'm all sad because I've had a really nasty cold for the last two weeks and haven't had a beer in that long. Thanks a lot.

Ahem: fruit in beer is a WAY older tradition than hopped beers; stouts can be hoppy; and perceived bitterness is a huge can of worms involving complex chemistry and the sensitivity of individual doing the tasting.

See. Now, by any fair standard, I just won the conversation, but there's no winning on Metafilter, just as a sense of accomplishment and a subtle melancholy at the inability of theoretical knowledge to quench thirst.
posted by Gygesringtone at 1:35 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


I'd also like to add that this thread is an excellent demonstration of the quality of this community, and how amazing the people who participate in it are.

Everyone in here put an amazing amount of effort in to trying to explain this to this dude, and just discussing it in general. I expected like 300 comments of rabble but it's actually one of the best MeTas I've seen in a while.

Good show.
posted by emptythought at 1:38 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Dilmah earl grey is tasty and plentiful. Do try eet. Especially with an anzac biscuit.
posted by supercrayon at 1:40 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


That settles it. I am never calling any of you "bro" again - from here on out, it's "bucko" all the way.
posted by madamjujujive at 1:41 PM on June 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


Everyone in here put an amazing amount of effort in to trying to explain this to this dude

Its like he is being given a cello lesson from Yo Yo Ma and he is not appreciating it.
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 1:42 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


I'd also like to add that this thread is an excellent demonstration of the quality of this community, and how amazing the people who participate in it are.

What a nice thing to say! I hope your day is going well, emptythought!
posted by Greg Nog at 1:45 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


I am never calling any of you "bro" again - from here on out, it's "bucko" all the way.

I think "sport" or "chief" is really the way to go, bucko.
posted by soundguy99 at 1:49 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


spitbull: "Yeah, well I think it's true. Metafilter was always a snarky place. But it didn't use to be so PC and it didn't use to entail such a hectoring, shaming, bullying tone on the subjects of gender and sexuality, very specifically. Of course some would say it was a boyzone back then too. Precisely because I have been here that long, I feel confident in my own impression that the discourse here is both less open-minded and freewheeling, and more PC and policed for cultural conformity to a narrower ideological spectrum of views on several major topics. I'm sorry if you disagree. It's a question of opinion, not factually decidable by snarky comment or the usual sneering putdown of dissenting voices. Many who have left or gone silent have said the same thing in the last two years especially, coincident with the vast expansion of moderation and the emergence of a certain very vocal group of deputy mods. And my point also asserted metafilter has always been mean. It's just meaner now than ever. And the over-moderation makes it worse."

Well - as a person who's been here almost nine years now, I have to dispute some parts of this.

Specifically, you claim that people are being silenced, and that this has led to a lot of people leaving or going silent over the past few years. This is one of those arguments that seems true on the face of it but is actually false in its rhetorical thrust. The implication is that there's a heightened political correctness that's gradually driven away more and more people. And I think that's an easy misconception to come to; the longer we're here, the more we see people leave or drop off, so of course that number is always increasing. But in point of fact the number of active users on this web site - not just members, but members who comment frequently - has more than doubled since you and I joined up here. Statistically and empirically, we can say that there is clearly not a decline in user participation because of changes on this website. There has, in fact, been a very large increase in user activity.

The reason why we might feel otherwise is because I imagine you and I have seen people we cared about drop off of this website for various reasons. People we care about naturally register higher on our radar. That's not our fault, that's just how we humans view the world; but we need to realize that the huge number of newer members here are no less valuable contributors than the good folks we are sad at losing.

I view the changes here a little differently than you do. It seems to me that, if we're going to map out the shifts between then and now, it would look a bit more like this: the Metafilter of 2004-2006 was a Metafilter of big personalities. In the era just before and just after favorites, there were a few dominant voices that were recognized by regular members of the site and could be counted on for insightful comments from their particular slant. I could mention names - some of those people are still here, in this thread even - but suffice it to say that Metafilter had its own kind of hierarchy then based on this cadre of strong personalities that tended to dominate. As you said - I don't know about the phrasing, but the point holds - Metafilter has always been "mean," and in those days we took a particular delight in takedowns and sparring between those strong personalities. We still have members like that, it's true, but in those days it was a much more central part of Metafilter life.

But over the past four or five years something interesting happened. I like to think this shift happened in part with the tacit support of the old cadre of strong participants, but I know there were differences of opinion. In any case, what happened was this: we initiated a series of (ongoing, even now) discussions about gender that resulted in some changes to the site and some changing attitudes. And through it all, the userbase kept growing. And the old system where a few strong participants dominated gave way to a Metafilter that is now infinitely more diverse and multifarious.

So, from my perspective, the shift in attitudes didn't actually drive users away in the long run. It made the site safer, more open, and more welcoming; and it ensured that new users would feel more at home and less threatened. And the Metafilter of today is better for it.

And whether you agree on that or not, I think anyone would have to admit that there really are more users now, and that number still seems to be increasing. Whatever happened, it has not had the net result of driving people away.
posted by koeselitz at 1:49 PM on June 8, 2013 [36 favorites]


Out:
- bro
- cis-scum
- lady

Acceptible:
- broseph
- brossel sprouts
- Abroham Lincoln

Encouraged:
- Call of Duty: Bro Ops
- brohemian rhapsody
- ipratopium bromide
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 1:50 PM on June 8, 2013 [19 favorites]


Eyebrows has cut to the heart as she so often does.

ISMJ is a fake who doesn't know he's a fake because he is apparently unable to feel the truth when he sees it, and can only adjust what he says by manipulating its superficial aspects to better resemble what other people agree is true until people stop telling him he's wrong.

He then thinks the superficial resemblances he's achieved constitute proof because he has no idea of the inner workings of proof, and even seems inclined to dispute that such inner workings exist in the first place.

Trying to help him "get it" is futile. It's not that the stone rolls back down the slope; the stone is so slippery it can't be pushed up the hill at all.
posted by jamjam at 1:53 PM on June 8, 2013


Not that anyone cares what I think, but:

1. ISMJ did get a slightly rough time on the blue, and moreso in this thread, but still probably less than he should have expected on any reasonable discussion forum;

2. "ISMJ" seems like it should be a Myers-Briggs personality type.
posted by wilko at 1:59 PM on June 8, 2013 [17 favorites]


"Its like he is being given a cello lesson from Yo Yo Ma and he is not appreciating it."

Well, you know. Other than those who know exactly what they're getting into and that's why they do it, I think that making a MeTa post and being the center of a a thread where people are criticizing you, even when they're being relatively nice about it, must be an intensely difficult and unpleasant experience.

I think it takes exceptional — I mean really exceptional — equanimity and solid character to not be defensive and to participate in such a discussion in a constructive way. I seriously doubt I could manage it, and that's with the years of observation and consequent deep awareness of how and why things would likely go very, very wrong. I can't even imagine posting to MeTa where I'm complaining about how I was treated elsewhere or a deletion or something — I mean, in all seriousness, I'm more likely to actually stab myself with a screwdriver first.

There were one or two times in the first year I was here where a MeTa almost became all about me and it was horrible. Eight or nine years on, however long it's been, it's a viscerally awful memory. And those occasions were merely the result of participating in an already-existing MeTa thread.

I feel sorry for even quite badly behaved people who find themselves in this situation here — ishrinkmajeans has done quite well by that relative standard. My hope is that later he'll find some value in what's been written in this thread. Right now, though, he's got a lot of people shaking their fingers at him and patronizing him and such and it's only human nature that he'll have a very hard time listening.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 2:00 PM on June 8, 2013 [16 favorites]


Operation Brobarossa
posted by strangely stunted trees at 2:02 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'd also like to add that this thread is an excellent demonstration of the quality of this community, and how amazing the people who participate in it are.

Yeah, I agree with this! For the most part I think this has been a respectful and thoughtful thread in the face of a lot of frustration. I feel like I used to see positive shout-out MeTas to thoughtful participants and I think it would be nice if we still had those. It's very easy to get noticed in a community by acting like a jerk and a lot harder to get noticed by being consistently thoughtful and when we DO notice someone who has made a positive difference in the community by taking their time and not getting bogged down or flipping out or whatever I think it would be nice to recognize that. There are definitely a lot of people in this thread who have been very patient and they are super impressive.

If we DO still do shout-out threads I think someone should open one for Eyebrows McGee who is consistently thoughtful and patient and adds interesting new things to my idea vocabulary.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 2:03 PM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


Very, very well said, koeselitz. I couldn't agree more. I think your analysis of the history here is right on the money.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 2:04 PM on June 8, 2013


"Its like he is being given a cello lesson from Yo Yo Ma and he is not appreciating it."

Let's not wrench our arms completely out of their sockets patting ourselves on the back, okay?
posted by ook at 2:07 PM on June 8, 2013 [14 favorites]


What about if I call somebody a bronydict cumberbrah, is that an insult?
posted by rtha at 2:09 PM on June 8, 2013 [15 favorites]


It's like he's being given a yo-yo lesson from Cello Ma?
posted by box at 2:10 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


A yolo lesson from Della Reese?
posted by mr. digits at 2:12 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


If there isn't already a yoyo competitor named Cello Ma, there really needs to be
posted by ook at 2:13 PM on June 8, 2013 [18 favorites]


Peppermint Tea??? Oh what a world, what a world.

Yes, Peppermint Tea. The wikipedia entry indicates some weak link to the calming effects of this particular tea on the bowels.

It works for me, anyway, especially when I've overindulged in cheese and my bowel movements have backed up worse than Boston Logan airport in a three day snowstorm (personal experience of both). Drinking two cups of peppermint tea makes the Gates of Bottom Earth open and an army of poo hail forth quicker than orcs exiting Mordor.

(Also, of course, drink water, exercise, eat more fiber, less fat, don't eat anywhere as much cheese as I do)

Anyway, though some people say you shouldn't drink it when chronically constipated, it works for me. YBMMV.
posted by Wordshore at 2:16 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Peppermint tea pretty much saved my life (or at least sanity) when I had The Worst Cold Ever earlier this year. I'm surprised there's any of it still available, since I thought I'd drunk it all in January.
posted by rtha at 2:18 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


"*not that cheap tea is bad. We keep a box of Barry's around because sometimes that's exactly the kind of tea you want on a cold and drizzly morning. But tea in bags is never made with the really primo leaves."

I only get the loose stuff, because I make pots of tea with a kettle. Not all purist ONE TRUE WAY or nothing, I just enjoy it more than I do with the bags.

Do you have a source on Twinings not using real bergamot?
posted by klangklangston at 2:18 PM on June 8, 2013


comment, screwdriver, comment, screwdriver, ohchrist, this will make the pain end, you know it will, ... that perverse stab-yourself instinct ... a pair of pliers ... I'm more likely to actually stab myself with a screwdriver first.

Reminds me of another recent rollickingly fun thread about women.
posted by headnsouth at 2:18 PM on June 8, 2013


Wordshore, I'm stealing YBMMV for my next BM discussion with my wife.
posted by arcticseal at 2:19 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Everyone in here put an amazing amount of effort in to trying to explain this to this dude, and just discussing it in general.

Seriously, this. There has been many hundreds of work-hours put into sharing how MeFi operates to someone who has got into the top 50 most frequent commenters in their first month but expresses themselves brashly enough that people worry it affects the tone of the site.

How would other sites deal with it?:
  1. Accept it. Which would mean conversation quality would be eroded.
  2. Block that user's account. Which would mean friendliness and the presumption of good faith would be eroded.
So, in addition to the $5 entry bar that makes MeFi habitable, we do need to do this good faith community effort to engage with people whose posting is good faith but problematic.

I definitely understand that it would be a difficult thing to be on the receiving end of, but it's important for the site that it's done. And while it's not like receiving a cello lesson from Yo Yo Ma, it is very much like having the whole orchestra rallying round the soloist to get them to learn their part in a concerto.*

*No, I don't play an instrument and have never been in an orchestra. Why do you ask?
posted by ambrosen at 2:19 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


"Let's not wrench our arms completely out of their sockets patting ourselves on the back, okay?"

If it involves me, I'm deeply uncomfortable with praise. But if it's just about other people, I think it's pretty cool. So, you know, I, too, am impressed with other people in this thread and I think they should be praised.

But, yeah, there's nothing super virtuous and impressive about either anyone's specific contribution or the thread in general. I think it's more a sense that this thread could have become very ugly and it didn't. Perhaps especially in the context of including some discussion about how things were in MeFi's past, when a thread such as this would have been all about egging-on the OP to flame-out. It's nice for it not to be that way.

And it's also nice that the thread didn't become a different sort of angry clusterfuck, as still does happen here quite often.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 2:23 PM on June 8, 2013


> But it didn't use to be so PC and it didn't use to entail such a hectoring, shaming, bullying tone on the subjects of gender and sexuality, very specifically.

A lot of white guys feel this way about what's happened to America since the '50s. They're not bad people; they're just self-centered. And wrong.

Also, I would like to second TheWhiteSkull's recommendation of Belgian beers.
posted by languagehat at 2:26 PM on June 8, 2013 [23 favorites]


grabbing onto an incisor and the grinding, crunching noise it'd make as I slowly pulled and twisted, wondering whether it'd snap off or come out at the roots or just burst into shards and powder.

GAAAAAAHHHH NOOOOOOOO I can't even make my eyes really read that sentence, I just keep skittering over it because NOOOOOO!
posted by Specklet at 2:29 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


Obviously we're sick as fuck.
posted by infini at 2:36 PM on June 8, 2013


I like 90% of all ales and hate about 90% of all larger. So hoppy yay, stout yay.. I even kind like the basterdization of steam beers, but just. can. not. quaff a larger with anything like enjoyment. the best I can do is tollerate the really watery ones and pretend it's love-in-a-canoe
posted by edgeways at 2:40 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Late to the party, but I just wanted to comment on this:

Metafilter was always a snarky place. But it didn't use to be so PC and it didn't use to entail such a hectoring, shaming, bullying tone on the subjects of gender and sexuality, very specifically. Of course some would say it was a boyzone back then too.

With all due respect (and I am not being snarky) I feel like this off-the-cuff aside about the boyzone issue is precisely the point that you seem to be missing (or at least minimizing).

It's not that "some" would say it was a boyzone (tomayto/tomahto; un-PC/boyzone; views differ). It's that many, many women (not to mention sympathetic men) actively experienced Metafilter at times as a sexist (even misogynist), hostile environment.

Metafilter was a meaner place (and I believe that I was a meaner participant partially as a result of feeling like a woman who had to be on defensive footing most of the time) back then. It is now a much more welcoming place to a wider range of participants when it comes to gender, sexuality, etc. From my perspective, those who long wistfully for those halcyon "I'd hit it" days are simply longing for a type of privilege that they once took for granted, but now are expected to be mindful of -- at least in Metafilter, if nowhere else in their lives.

As others have noted, there are an infinite number of communities where un-PC discourse absolutely rules the day. The fact that Metafilter strives to be an oasis from much of that is the very opposite of oppressive or mean.
posted by scody at 2:42 PM on June 8, 2013 [65 favorites]


You're not?
posted by Elementary Penguin at 10:28 AM on June 8


*Cries and joins a men's rights group.*
posted by Decani at 2:47 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


There has been many hundreds of work-hours put into sharing how MeFi operates to someone who has got into the top 50 most frequent commenters in their first month but expresses themselves brashly enough that people worry it affects the tone of the site.

Since you semi-asked in the spoiler tag, 15th most comments on the blue in the period since joining. At time of posting, obvs.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 2:49 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


In re The State Of Metafilter, I'm pretty sure Peak Dick around here – in all senses – was around 2007 or so.

It's been kind of a shallow curve from 2002 or thereabouts and kind of a shallow curve back with a lot of ups and downs, I think. Volume & repetition also strongly affect the sense of hostility on the site.
posted by furiousthought at 2:55 PM on June 8, 2013


Lutoslawski: "See, I would drink fermented hop water because I love hops so much and I really can't abide stouts, and I usually feel like the odd one out when it comes to MeFi beer tastes."

See, as someone who is not partial to hoppy things and does like stouts, I would have said I was the odd one out when it came to MeFi (and currently fashionable) beer tastes. This either says something about us, Metafilter or just possibly that the fashion has changed making me terribly fashionable and I haven't noticed.
posted by hoyland at 2:57 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I think it's more a sense that this thread could have become very ugly and it didn't.

To that extent I agree completely. But there's a point at which the self-congratulation gets to feel a bit... self-congratulatory. I mean, yay for us for being able to have conversations that more or less usually fail to go completely off the rails, but still, it's not like we're initiating anybody into the Greater Mysteries here or anything.

it didn't use to entail such a hectoring, shaming, bullying tone on the subjects of gender and sexuality

A little while back there was an AskMe about whether gin and tonic was a "girly" drink -- which reminded me of an much older (Cardoso-era, in fact posted by Miguel himself) thread about whether gin and tonic was a "gay" drink. The boyzone discussions happened somewhere in the intervening decade.

Compare and contrast the before and after; the difference in language and attitude between the two threads is pretty striking, I think. We (by which I as much mean "people in general" as I do "people on metafilter") really have come a surprisingly long way.

Maybe in another ten years we won't even be asking whether drinks are "girly".
posted by ook at 2:58 PM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


I like 90% of all ales and hate about 90% of all larger.
posted by edgeways at 10:40 PM on June 8


Larger is for girls.
posted by Decani at 3:03 PM on June 8, 2013


the difference in language and attitude between the two threads is pretty striking, I think

I managed to leave out my main point, which was that there was no hectoring or shaming or bullying going on in the second thread, because we'd internalized it by then; it was no longer necessary to point it out.
posted by ook at 3:04 PM on June 8, 2013


"I realized after a while that this site, and some others I regularly visit have just kind of grown up."

Well, yeah, but the interwebs have grown up too. I remember heated MeTalks where it was argued that the vitriol doesn't matter because this "just a website" and in some respects isn't really real - that IRL mores just don't apply the same way. Remember when we used to say that nobody knew that/if you were a dog? Hell, most usernames here are probably 3 google searches away from a real life name and location. Online and IRL identities have been converging - often deliberately.

Over time, I think the mods have wisely decided to allow some of the limitations of IRL etiquette into the moderation here.
posted by klarck at 3:08 PM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


I first joined mefi when parisparamus was active. The site has definitely changed. Back then this thread would be all about getting ISMJ to flame out as spectacularly as possible. There were no favorites, but you could tell who the popular kids were, and they tended to be the meanest most thick skinned mofos.

I see that some users have personally changed in a way paralleling the culture of the site, and some of them have said that they are better people now, or at least enjoy life more.

I liked this change, and that is why I came back. But once in a while mefi feels like The Mutual Applause Society (yo-yo ma really?), and I like the site a little bit less. If we are going to be assholes, aggressive aggressive is better than passive aggressive.

Back to the subject of this thread, ISMJ is giving me flashbacks to the wild west mefi of 2006 or so. I don't want to name names, but there were users who would derail a thread just like jeans does, then there would be 300 comments responding to them, and they would ignore 298 and respond to the two worst comments. Rinse and repeat. Some were banned, some quit and some changed their ways.

I can't wait to see what happens with jeans.

I am lying, I can wait, I will just ignore him when he is acting out.
posted by Doroteo Arango II at 3:11 PM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


I don't know that it's "very few" or that we can know the number at any moment - can we?

Not instantaneously, but pb ran the numbers a while back. Unless there have been serious changes in the way people use the site since then we would appear to be a fairly rare phenomenon.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 3:19 PM on June 8, 2013


I'm now thinking all the time about a Lololo lesson from mama. Make it stop.
posted by Namlit at 3:27 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Pretty much all of the optional settings are used by a very small percentage of people. The defaults are the overwhelming majority on just about everything.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 3:27 PM on June 8, 2013


Maybe in another ten years we won't even be asking whether drinks are "girly".

I don't know about you but I consider any drink with tequila in it to be at least a little bi-curious.
posted by The Whelk at 3:30 PM on June 8, 2013 [13 favorites]


well tequila has certainly made some (suddenly much closer) friends bi-curious.
posted by nadawi at 3:37 PM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


> ishrinkmajeans, this place isn't a contest. It is a place to HAVE discussions, not WIN discussions. Do you understand the difference?
> posted by KathrynT at 1:12 PM on June 8 [15 favorites +] [!]

KatherintT, there is a great deal of difference between "having discussions" when, on the one hand, you largely agree with everyone in the room and are just hashing out the details, and when on the other hand you say something contrarian and all the other parties round upon you, each vying with the others to find the definitive putdown. Do you understand the difference? sorry, that's patronizing and fuller doesn't do patronizing. Fuller does respectfully tip hat.
posted by jfuller at 3:40 PM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


Now all I want is a Young's Double Chocolate Stout and I don't know if they even sell it anywhere near me. This thread has made me sad. :(
posted by Jacqueline at 3:42 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


nadawi: "ohnoes! i'm pretty sure that en forme de poire and i just gave each other reciprocal favorites! does that mean it's time for the flogging?"

All I have to say is can I watch the mutual flogging? Sounds hawt.
posted by Samizdata at 3:43 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Young's Double Chocolate Stout isn't nearly as good as the Samuel Smith chocolate stout, at least in my estimation.
posted by koeselitz at 3:44 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


St Ambroise Oatmeal Stout.

Also, if you like sweet sweet candy, try the bourbon stouts that are coming out now. DuClaw makes a good one (Retribution) if you're in the midAtlantic area. Yum.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 3:47 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


"I don't know about you but I consider any drink with tequila in it to be at least a little bi-curious."

Bi-curious? Tequila is tr.... Wait, I hate that shitty joke.

Anyway, I was a country radio disc-jockey in 1983 when Shelly West's Jose Cuervo hit #1 on the C&W charts and the first time I heard it I was like, holy shit, this is my life, man:
Jose Quervo
You are a friend of mine
I like to drink you with
A little salt and lime
Did I kiss all the cowboys
Did I shoot out the lights
Did I dance on the bar
Did I start any fights
Any given night of drinking those days I might do any of those things, possibly including kissing all the cowboys. Fuck, I don't know, I don't remember.

Tequila's awesome.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 3:50 PM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


If nothing else, I learned that Firefox is ending support of the blink tag. So the thread was worth it.
posted by Chrysostom at 3:51 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Also I learned a lot of you like tea and I really wish you'd come over and drink down the stash accumulated by my husband when he stopped smoking, because man, we've got more tea than the Harney's warehouse on the NY-CT border right now.
posted by bitter-girl.com at 3:54 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Homeboy Trouble: "There has been many hundreds of work-hours put into sharing how MeFi operates to someone who has got into the top 50 most frequent commenters in their first month but expresses themselves brashly enough that people worry it affects the tone of the site.

Since you semi-asked in the spoiler tag, 15th most comments on the blue in the period since joining. At time of posting, obvs.
"

Woot, in that list, I get to sit next to Jessamyn! YAY!
posted by Samizdata at 3:56 PM on June 8, 2013


Everyone's wearing letter jackets and suits cause they have a home game at that table.
posted by nathancaswell at 3:59 PM on June 8, 2013


Lutoslawski: "See, I would drink fermented hop water because I love hops so much and I really can't abide stouts, and I usually feel like the odd one out when it comes to MeFi beer tastes."

Hops are pot's closest relative, hops evolved from pot, and the greatest concentrations of active ingredients come from the corresponding parts of each plant.

I keep thinking their impacts on us might also be closely related in some sense, but I know of no direct evidence to that effect.
posted by jamjam at 4:00 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Sometimes I use favorites as a way to mark my place in a long or fast-moving thread, especially if I'm reading a thread at work and I'm about to leave for home.

This is brilliant. I am going to plan to do this from now on but forget about my plan before I actually manage to enact it.
posted by jeather at 4:11 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Young's Double Chocolate Stout isn't nearly as good as the Samuel Smith chocolate stout, at least in my estimation.

Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout will always be my homebase beer. At any given time there may be a beer I like better than that one, but no bear can consistently retain my affections for so long.
posted by invitapriore at 4:13 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Drinky Die: I actually expect two [favourites] back for every one I give out.

Is this the place where I admit to getting quite anxious if my favourites count is less than twice my favourited count?

Because I do feel that, and I feel quite stupid for caring, and I know that in an equal world the ratio would be one, but it just validates me as a contributor rather than a consumer. Apparently this matters to me.
posted by ambrosen at 4:14 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I do love both Young's and the Samuel Smith, and I think what people need to do is get a hold of a bottle of Left Hand's Milk Stout Nitro, and then a bottle of Youngs, and one of the Samuel Smith, and the St. Ambroise, oh and Old Rasputin.

Or maybe just that's what I need to do.

Hops are pot's closest relative, hops evolved from pot, and the greatest concentrations of active ingredients come from the corresponding parts of each plant.

Now, there's a few people out there that are going to get an idea from this. For your sake, and the beer you would brew's sake. Don't.
posted by Gygesringtone at 4:14 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


... I thought it was obvious on its face
Bit late I know but, if there is one single thing I have learned by hanging around here, it's that absolutely nothing is 'obvious on its face'. So many things that I had always thought were too obvious to even need any explanation have turned out to not only be not obvious, but largely or completely false that I now never assume that anything I believe falls into that category. Well, I try my hardest, at least. There is such a diversity of experiences here that it's invalid to assume that anything is 'obviously true'. By hanging around here, I've learned a great deal, but the most important thing is that my own view of the world is incredibly narrow and I can be a much better person by always keeping that in mind.

It's not even correct that beer is universally a beverage of choice - I personally dislike it and enjoy a nice apple cider instead.
posted by dg at 4:15 PM on June 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


posted by KathrynT at 1:12 PM on June 8 [15 favorites +] [!]

KatherintT,


you know, my name was right there. You coulda copy-pasted it even.
posted by KathrynT at 4:15 PM on June 8, 2013 [9 favorites]


2. "ISMJ" seems like it should be a Myers-Briggs personality type.

It's one letter away from two - ISTJ and ISFJ.

I think ISMJ is most likely an ISTJ.
posted by Deoridhe at 4:17 PM on June 8, 2013


MeTas like this make me want to shuffle around the room smiling desperately and asking everyone, "But we're cool, right?"

It is completely possible within the spectrum of my stupid for me to end up at the bottom of a pile-on in one of these.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 4:18 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


snow plow was one of my favorite cheap milkstouts - but i moved away and they stopped making it...

i also like the stouts in rogue's line.

old rasputin is good, i think. the problem is that i rarely remember the finer details of the night before when i drink it.
posted by nadawi at 4:20 PM on June 8, 2013


INFP PRIDE
posted by nathancaswell at 4:21 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


I haven't had Old Rasputin in a while, but I remember liking it, I think. I don't know, sometimes imperial stouts seem to have the same relationship to other beers that soda fountain syrup has to the soda that comes in cans.
posted by invitapriore at 4:22 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


i only like the imperials once in a great while and basically always when i'm looking to be knocked on my ass.
posted by nadawi at 4:24 PM on June 8, 2013


Russian Imperial Stout is my favorite style of beer, and Old Rasputin is my favorite of the style. I've even got a bottle of the barrel aged stuff aging in the basement for my next big round number birthday (3 years, I can last that long, maybe).
posted by Gygesringtone at 4:34 PM on June 8, 2013


It's not even correct that beer is universally a beverage of choice - I personally dislike it and enjoy a nice apple* cider instead.

My local serves the delicious Thatchers Cheddar Valley, which is a beautiful deep orange and dry but not tart, and of course, uncarbonated. I do likes it, I do.

*struck through because qualifying cider with apple is like qualifying bread with unpoisoned: deeply suspect.
posted by ambrosen at 4:35 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


"INFP PRIDE"

I always score INxP with my F/T score right in the middle (so, sometimes F and sometimes T). This is cool because it strongly reflects both my sensibilities (d'uh) and my intellectual ideal, but it's less cool because I like and identify with both INFPs and INTPs but kind of feel like I'm not part of either group. I'm pretty extreme in all three INP directions, though, no ambiguity there, and I actually experience some worldview clashes with E, S, and Js.

MBTI is for entertainment purposes only. Do not marry, refuse a job, select a pet, or take up knitting on its basis.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 4:35 PM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


515 comments. Wow, I'm kind of glad I spent the day out on the porch.
posted by jonmc at 4:39 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


Oh god the very thought of tea flavored beer makes me gag a little

Yeah but Twisted Tea is delicious.
posted by Drinky Die at 4:43 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Most flavored alcohol delivery systems are tasty, actually. People just get snooty about them.
posted by jonmc at 4:46 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


... qualifying cider with apple is like qualifying bread with unpoisoned: deeply suspect
Heh, I guess I knew someone would pick me up on that. I know that cider is often made with fruit other than apples, although the most common alternative I see is pear cider, which may be more accurately described as 'Perry'. I've never tried an uncarbonated cider and I imagine that it would have a much stronger taste of the source fruit, which could be good or bad, I guess.
posted by dg at 4:52 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


> "Wow, I'm kind of glad I spent the day out on the porch."

But what kind of beer were you drinking???
posted by Jacqueline at 4:58 PM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


Ballantine, mostly.
posted by jonmc at 5:06 PM on June 8, 2013


Mrs. Ghidorah's rapid transition from chu-hai* to Belgian white to deep, rich flavored stouts has been pretty amazing to be a part of. She's definitely a fan of stouts with flavor, as well as mildly sweet stouts. Milk stouts, chocolate stouts. She even looks down at some of the stouts I like as being too bland (if you happen to be in Japan, you should try to find Minoh stout, brewed in Osaka, or the Hitachino Nest Beer espresso stout, from Ibaraki). It's led to us checking out more and more beer bars, which is nice, because Tokyo is finally getting more and more beer bars.

chu-hai is a drink that is made with sho chu, soda, and fruit juice. Canned chu-hai is the epitome of kiddie-booze, though they've recently started releasing 8 and 9% chu-hais that taste like battery acid. Fun fact, sho chu was used as a floor cleaner and disinfectant in the Edo period.
posted by Ghidorah at 5:13 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Heh, I guess I knew someone would pick me up on that. I know that cider is often made with fruit other than apples, although the most common alternative I see is pear cider, which may be more accurately described as 'Perry'.

I just made a perry-cider thing today! It's:

3 gallons apple juice
1.5 gallons pear juice
9 real big cucumbers (peeled, seeded, and liquefied in the food processor)
about an ounce of mint
about three inches of grated ginger root
Pasteur Champagne yeast

My plan is to let it ferment real dry, then add some blue food-coloring before bottling, and label it as Romulan Ale.
posted by Greg Nog at 5:26 PM on June 8, 2013 [26 favorites]


Speaking of peppermint tea - iced peppermint tea is really, really good in summer. And easy as hell to brew - chuck the appropriate number of tea bags in your jug, fill with water, and stick in the fridge and give it an hour or two. It generates enough menthol in the drink to kind of prolong the cooling effect.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 5:26 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


I had Peppermint Tastykakes the other day. They were good. Since Hostess went under the snack cake market in the outer boroughs has broken wide open.
posted by jonmc at 5:40 PM on June 8, 2013


Oh my, that perry cider thing sounds goddamned delicious.
posted by Lutoslawski at 5:42 PM on June 8, 2013


I have to study for things all day, so alas, I am drinking a virgin cocktail of iced yerba mate, soda water, splash of lemonade. It's pretty good. Would be better with a little gin.
posted by Lutoslawski at 5:43 PM on June 8, 2013


This thread is still going on? The pain! The pain!
posted by cjorgensen at 5:49 PM on June 8, 2013


Just remember to drink some water and take a B Vitamin before going to bed and leave yourself a lot of time to sleep.
posted by The Whelk at 5:52 PM on June 8, 2013


This thread is still going on? The pain! The pain!

Well, put the screwdriver down then.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 5:54 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


Well, put the screwdriver down then.

But it's the vodka that's easing the pain!
posted by MoonOrb at 5:57 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Just drinking wine out of a box at this point you poopyheads!
posted by cjorgensen at 6:00 PM on June 8, 2013


Today should have been a sangria day.
posted by tservo at 6:01 PM on June 8, 2013


Wheat beers are just sad.

PISTOLS AT DAWN!

OK, beer glasses at dawn. I'm too lazy to deal with pistols.

Wheat beers are wonderful! I'm especially fond of Bell's Oberon, which is the true harbinger of Spring around here, and the wheat beers I drank in Germany were always a delight.
posted by MissySedai at 6:02 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Larger is for girls.

The larger the beer, the better.
posted by MissySedai at 6:04 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


If you like a rich, complicated, Belgian-style beer, I recommend Three Philosophers. It's really, really, really good. But don't drink it as fast as the taste will make you want to. It's got a punch.
posted by languagehat at 6:05 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Wow, I have learned so much about tea in this thread!

As a person who basically just drank bog standard PG Tips for years and now that I'm back in the US and drink only Twinings English Breakfast can anyone recommend the best English Breakfast out there? I really like Twinings, but I'm getting the impression that there are much better options available. So what is the very best English Breakfast I should try? I also like Irish Breakfast, so recs for that work too.
posted by triggerfinger at 6:07 PM on June 8, 2013


I have a cold and the only thing there's to get drunk on is cough medicine and it ain't even the kind with alcohol in it. I might end up eating my deodorant, people.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 6:08 PM on June 8, 2013


I've been drinking Portland's Occidental Kolsch recently. A very fine beer.
posted by KokuRyu at 6:10 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


If you like a rich, complicated, Belgian-style beer, I recommend Three Philosophers. It's really, really, really good. But don't drink it as fast as the taste will make you want to. It's got a punch.
posted by languagehat


Ommegang is a phenomenal brewery. Rare Vos is also amazing, but they have SO MANY good beers it might actually make me broke or dead.
posted by vers at 6:11 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


I'm eating a salad and drinking box wine and catching up on these series called " Supernatural" which I have somehow avoided for ...Jesus nine years?!
posted by The Whelk at 6:14 PM on June 8, 2013


Kind of shocked this thread isn't closed already.

ishrinkmajeans, before this thread you created I had no idea who you were; in all honesty it's been a while since I've been here and I'm not as up-to-date on what's going on as everyone else is. It's notable that people recognize your username already, after less than a month of activity. I went and looked at some of your recent comments. I'm not surprised that people have responded the way they have.

I would encourage you to make an effort to be nice, and to learn. You can learn a lot here on MetaFilter, I know I have. I would hope that this thread would serve as a wakeup call.
posted by Deathalicious at 6:17 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Larger is for girls.

*sings*

Some girls are larger than others...
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 6:17 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Am I the only one here drinking cooking sherry?
posted by mazola at 6:18 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


jfuller: "there is a great deal of difference between "having discussions" when, on the one hand, you largely agree with everyone in the room and are just hashing out the details, and when on the other hand you say something contrarian and all the other parties round upon you, each vying with the others to find the definitive putdown. Do you understand the difference? sorry, that's patronizing and fuller doesn't do patronizing. Fuller does respectfully tip hat."

Woah. Do you understand the difference between "having a discussion" and "being contrarian". Because that's the entire point.

There are users here who hold very, very different than most MeFites. And while we may not respect their positions, at least we respect the fact that they argue in good faith. Even if we feel like their arguments have no merit, they are arguments, not "Yeah but what if"s.
posted by Deathalicious at 6:24 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


"Hitachino Nest Beer espresso stout, from Ibaraki"

That stuff is all over around here, and while it's tasty, Whole Foods sells it for $9 per 12 oz. (or close) bottle. It's just not that good.
posted by klangklangston at 6:24 PM on June 8, 2013


dg: "although the most common alternative I see is pear cider, which may be more accurately described as 'Perry'."

Wait, it tastes like a platypus secret agent?
posted by Chrysostom at 6:26 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Dude, Whole Foods sells everything for $9 a bottle. Unless it's more expensive.
posted by MoonOrb at 6:27 PM on June 8, 2013


i am drinking stone russian imperial stout right now and i have only one question

who the hell let all the tea drinkers in here?
posted by pyramid termite at 6:30 PM on June 8, 2013


Just drinking wine out of a box at this point you poopyheads!
Man, you could at least put it in a glass first!

Larger is for girls.
The larger the beer, the better.

I thought size didn't matter? or is that just my wishful thinking at play?
posted by dg at 6:39 PM on June 8, 2013


Just yesterday I discovered a brewery from Wisconsin called Tyranena. They have a Mystery Case that refuses to reveal its contents to you until you get it home and open it up-- two each of six different beers.

I may have had one of each already. They are pretty good.
posted by shakespeherian at 6:39 PM on June 8, 2013


Drinking a Wachusett' "Green Monsta" Lately my go-to inexpensive IPA
posted by terrapin at 6:42 PM on June 8, 2013


I love how most flameout threads eventually devolve into a social gathering.

It's kind of like bringing a picnic to the auto-da-fé.

*cracks open a Creemore "Kellerbier"*
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 6:43 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


as far as the subject at hand goes, i've noticed an increased lack of tolerance for minority viewpoints here and a tendency to cut off the resultant controversial - or potentially controversial conversations - by branding them as derails

that's framing the issue at hand and framing in and of itself can be a means of discouraging minority viewpoints and furthering a certain agenda

we've gone a little too far in this direction, although i'm not certain this particular example being discussed is a good one

maybe it's time to step back and let the conversations breathe a bit more freely and trust the membership not to go overboard on things like they used to

after all, if we are "less mean" and "more pc" (whatever that means), that should mean we're a little more trustworthy, right? - perhaps trustworthy enough to be able to go off on some tangents without getting crazy about it?

also, i think that's it's unfair to place blame on those who post unpopular viewpoints for everyone else piling in on them - if a couple of people have done a good job of rebutting something, why do 10 people have to join in?

we could control how we react to things a bit better

it's just like a synth yahoo group i get email from - there was, i guess, a deleted post having to do with the christian religion, which really didn't belong - well, someone deleted it, so i didn't have to

but i did have to delete 10 or so emails complaining about it, or commenting about it, or saying that the original complainer shouldn't have singled out the christian religion

sometimes the reaction to something that's off is worse than the original offence
posted by pyramid termite at 6:50 PM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


I snagged a twisted tea from a friend's house the other day out of curiosity and I am now encouraged to open it.
posted by arcticseal at 6:54 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Jessamyn:

Also, do not make this thread into a discussion/argument about the thing we didn't want folks having a discussion/argument about in the MeFi thread, thanks.

Could I get some clarification on why this is verboten? It seems that if the FPP interprets the lower mean frequency of masturbation among women as de facto evidence of a problem, then it can't be off-topic to argue it's not. Is the question of whether women need, on average, masturbate as much as men to have fulfilling, unrepressed sex lives just toxic?

Pardon me if I've just missed it, but I haven't seen anyone actually go attempt to look through the literature rather than arguing back and forth about who has the onus to go look it. (For over five hundred comments!). Why not actually see what the literature says?

Baumeister et al (2001) did a metareview and found:
Across many different studies and measures, men have been shown to have more frequent and more intense sexual desires than women, as reflected in spontaneous thoughts about sex, frequency and variety of sexual fantasies, desired frequency of intercourse, desired number of partners, masturbation, liking for various sexual practices, willingness to forego sex, initiating versus refusing sex, making sacrifices for sex, and other measures. No contrary findings (indicating stronger sexual motivation among women) were found. Hence we conclude that the male sex drive is stronger than the female sex drive.
Now, you might point out that the evidence they surveyed was largely limited to Western cultures. Although the differences in sexual attitudes between Western and non-Western societies are not always as large as it seems many would like to believe, let's see if we can find any study with a wider scope.

Lippa (2010) surveyed 53 nations, including many that could hardly be called "Western", and found that in every singe case men had a higher mean sex drive and a lower standard deviation about that mean, as the author defines it.

Schmidt (2003) surveyed over 16,000 people throughout the globe and found that:
Sex differences in the desire for sexual variety are culturally universal throughout these world regions... regardless of the measures used to evaluate them.
Although I am shocked to find myself agreeing with ishrinkmajeans for once, I regret to suspect that the commenters who describe ISMJ's view as "dopey made up bullshit perpetuated by the patriarchy" cannot possibly have looked into the literature on the question, which is basically unanimous in agreement that men tend to desire more sex with a greater number of partners than women, statistically speaking.

This is not to say that we should draw any particular normative conclusion from that.
posted by lambdaphage at 6:54 PM on June 8, 2013 [9 favorites]


My visiting doctor friend said my original comment in the masturbation thread was right but the said "so having fun trolling on the Internet?" which gave me a sad.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 6:56 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Because MetaTalk is for discussions about site issues, not for hashing out derails from FPP's. You wanna talk about the derail? Make a new FPP.
posted by ApathyGirl at 6:57 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Could I get some clarification on why this is verboten?

Because MetaTalk is moderated very differently from Metafilter proper, and uses vastly more moderation bandwidth. We can't sustain that sort of conversation here. If you disagree, that's fine, but nothing in your not-actually-ok-for-MetaTalk comment actually addresses any of the reasons why it was a derail.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 6:57 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


*sings*

Some girls are larger than others...
posted by TheWhiteSkull


Nup. Some girls are lager than others. Some girls' mothers are lager than others. Some girls' mothers are lager than other girls' mothers.

I had to.
posted by vers at 6:57 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Some girls are lager than others.

while others are merely stout
posted by pyramid termite at 7:03 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


restless_nomad,

If you don't give a reason to consider sex differences in libido a derail, it's not possible to respond to those reasons. Nevertheless, I tried to consider the most charitable case for considering it a derail, and respond to that case instead when I wrote:

It seems that if the FPP interprets the lower mean frequency of masturbation among women as de facto evidence of a problem, then it can't be off-topic to argue it's not.

Since I'm specifically asking why the mods "didn't want folks having a discussion/argument about [it] in the MeFi thread", it seems like MeTa is the place for it. If not, just tell me where to go and I'll let y'all get back to the next hundred comments about beverages.
posted by lambdaphage at 7:08 PM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


As a person who basically just drank bog standard PG Tips for years and now that I'm back in the US and drink only Twinings English Breakfast can anyone recommend the best English Breakfast out there?

Revolution is my current favorite.
posted by ersatzkat at 7:11 PM on June 8, 2013


I am just coming from a Unitarian Universalist Beer-Off, where home brewers from two different congregations competed. I have never been around Unitarians before so kinda fun, in a respectful, thoughtful way. The church it was held at is in an inner-city neighborhood with a community garden where they grow their own hops to make their beer. The beers had in-crowd Unitarian names that I could not decipher but were yummy. I was offered a 'Chocolate Donut Stout' which I turned down, but now that it is no longer on offer I wish I had at least tried it. That seems to be a common life problem.

This is my report for Saturday afternoon.
posted by readery at 7:12 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


tell me where to go

Presumably, a post in the Blue on sex differences in libido. It could be really interesting, I'd think. Some combination of a literature base, plus cultural and historical changes in how it's perceived, and closing out with something on the state of the field.

Of course, it'd probably go best for someone with an actual background in it, rather than a layperson like myself, so...
posted by CrystalDave at 7:13 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Nevertheless, I tried to consider the most charitable case for considering it a derail, and respond to that case instead when I wrote:

It seems that if the FPP interprets the lower mean frequency of masturbation among women as de facto evidence of a problem, then it can't be off-topic to argue it's not.


That framing makes an assumption that isn't correct - that the app linked in the FPP is comparing women to men, rather than average women to frequent masturbators who are also women. That is not, as far as I can tell, actually stated anywhere, and it seems to me like an unobvious assumption to draw. You'd have to make that case first, rather than just asserting "this isn't a problem because men's libidos are higher" which doesn't actually have anything to do with the social stigma of female masturbation, or the mental and physical benefits of increasing its frequency.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 7:15 PM on June 8, 2013 [7 favorites]


someone can have the goal of increasing the comfort that women have with masturbation and it have absolutely nothing to do with how their sex drive or frequencies compare to men - that's why it's a derail. it doesn't matter how much more or less men jack off or want sex if the conversation is female masturbation.
posted by nadawi at 7:16 PM on June 8, 2013 [21 favorites]


Let's see:

Free jazz: Pro.
90's hip-hop: ambivalent, but mostly pro.
Grayscale tatoos: Pro, in moderation.
Earl Grey Tea: Prefer ginseng or jasmine, despite the pleasure of saying "Tea. Earl Grey. Hot."
Overly hopped beers: Generally prefer Belgians in the summer, saisons in the fall, stouts in the winter. Despite not being a huge hops fan, still like SN Torpedo.
More or less mean: Been here since aught-two; MF of old more "freewheeling," yes, but not significantly meaner presently. Less mean to many.
Must be missing something. Hurm?
posted by octobersurprise at 7:19 PM on June 8, 2013


The article does compare the intensity of the taboo against masturbation between the sexes, but not the frequency of masturbation or intensity of libido. I think the message is: Clearly some women don't masturbate because of the taboo and a lack of education, let's fix that.

Outside of that generality, it's confusing. How much masturbation is ideal? How can you determine that? There can be such a thing as too much also if it is interfering with other desired relationships. I think when you actually try and figure out that part is when you get into discussing the role of libido.
posted by Drinky Die at 7:21 PM on June 8, 2013


Out:
- lady


What'd i miss? huh

Also, i'll cast my vote that the usage of bro there was snarky name calling. But that i have absolutely no problem with it, and think that if any snarky name calling is going to be happening here at all then that's definitely the right kind. It's not overly harsh, derailing, inflammatory, or shitty in any way i can bullshit up in my head. I also think it's very topical and just somehow "i know it when i see it" different from the vast majority of name calling(especially on the internet).

It's very calling it what it is/calling it as you see it. And i'm utterly fine with that.
posted by emptythought at 7:22 PM on June 8, 2013


I'm Tom Brodett of Motel 6, and we'll keep the light on for ya.
posted by Juffo-Wup at 7:23 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Yeah, agree with restlessnomad and nadawi that the FPP link didn't have anything to do with men. I just read it and read it again and I don't see where there is anything about the male libido or sexual desire or anything to do with men at all. There is no comparison between male and female libidos even hinted in the FPP, thus it is a derail and a very classic one at that.
posted by Danila at 7:27 PM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


Right. I'm also pretty pro masturbation.
posted by octobersurprise at 7:28 PM on June 8, 2013


ambrosen: Is this the place where I admit to getting quite anxious if my favourites count is less than twice my favourited count?

Because I do feel that, and I feel quite stupid for caring, and I know that in an equal world the ratio would be one, but it just validates me as a contributor rather than a consumer. Apparently this matters to me.


As long as you don't judge other people by your arbitrary standard for yourself, then it's perfectly fine to feel that way =)

I have this arbitrary measure of post-quality where I feel that the perfect favorite-to-comment ratio is 2 to 1, and I feel that's an indicator I've made it clear to people that the main link or subject is interesting to both check out and discuss. But I caught myself starting to judge other people's posts by that measure, so I dialed back my obsession.
posted by Kattullus at 7:30 PM on June 8, 2013


Right. I'm also pretty pro masturbation.

Strictly amateur over here. How do you get sponsors?
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 7:35 PM on June 8, 2013 [30 favorites]


readery: "The beers had in-crowd Unitarian names that I could not decipher but were yummy."

I'm Unitarian Universalist, although I don't myself drink, and I'm now quite curious what the drink names were and would be happy to help decipher them!
posted by beryllium at 7:37 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


How do you get sponsors?

same as you do in any other field - you've just got to expose yourself, put yourself out there, and keep at it until something good happens
posted by pyramid termite at 7:37 PM on June 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


it's a bit problematic, though, that sponsors these days are more interested in the number of minutes of TV coverage their brand gets than most things. Problematic from a couple of perspectives, actually.
posted by dg at 7:40 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


Now that I got the ok to share this on userscripts.org, here is a handy little script curious.jp made that hides favourite counts on all profile pages. This was after an an idle comment I made in the last discussion on favourites, so I've been using it for a while and it works like a charm. Thanks curious.jp, I love this place!
posted by Lorin at 7:52 PM on June 8, 2013


How do you get sponsors?

Kickstarter.
posted by octobersurprise at 7:54 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


The beers had in-crowd Unitarian names that I could not decipher but were yummy.
...
I'm Unitarian Universalist, although I don't myself drink, and I'm now quite curious what the drink names were and would be happy to help decipher them!


As a UU who loves beer I desperately second the above request for the beer-names
posted by Greg Nog at 8:01 PM on June 8, 2013


How does overtime work in hockey? Like is it sudden death or highest score after overtime wins?
posted by nooneyouknow at 8:02 PM on June 8, 2013


Sudden death
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 8:03 PM on June 8, 2013


Thanks.
posted by nooneyouknow at 8:04 PM on June 8, 2013


That LA goal with 9 seconds remaining in regulation to tie it up was awesome (because I like drama and I have no allegiance to either LA or Chicago).
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 8:06 PM on June 8, 2013


We'll I'm glad it made someone* happy.

*someone not an LA fan.
posted by nooneyouknow at 8:08 PM on June 8, 2013


That framing makes an assumption that isn't correct - that the app linked in the FPP is comparing women to men, rather than average women to frequent masturbators who are also women. That is not, as far as I can tell, actually stated anywhere, and it seems to me like an unobvious assumption to draw.

Well it was an inference noted by the author linked to by pickelnickle (7 favorites):
a scary part of this is the idea that men’s sexuality is normative, and if women aren’t masturbating as much as men, something’s wrong with them.

look through the infographics on the game’s page. look at how masturbation is being framed. “46.6% of women masturbate less than once a month every year. gals, you can do better!” the way to overcome shame is definitely not to shame women for what they don’t do with their bodies.
I also read Blasdelb (65 favorites) that way:
"46.6% of women masterbate less than once a month every year. Gals, you can do better!"

Because ladies, whatever or sexual interests, habits, or desires happen to be; clearly no conversation about them would be complete without addressing how woefully insufficient they currently are.
although on second reading, the comment is consistent with that interpretation but not exclusively.

In any case, if you have a website promoting masturbation among women and you display a chart showing that about half of women masturbate less than once a month as self-evidently demonstrative of the conclusion that women's masturbatory habits are socially repressed, the obvious rejoinder is "well, how can you tell from that chart?" Why should any particular woman masturbate more or less than she already does (given that about 90% of all women sampled report no guilt or shame at all). Why is once/month especially low, except that it would be low for a typical man?

I think that's a pretty small inferential hop, one that ishrinkmajeans wasn't the first to make.
posted by lambdaphage at 8:10 PM on June 8, 2013 [8 favorites]


That stuff is all over around here, and while it's tasty, Whole Foods sells it for $9 per 12 oz. (or close) bottle. It's just not that good.

Ugh, this is the biggest thing that pisses me off about interesting foreign beer like this. There's a couple shops in seattle that have it for like, $6 a 12oz but that's still insane. Sometimes on special occasions i'll buy a few interesting sounding ones to try out. None of them are worth $6-9 a bottle though.

I snagged a twisted tea from a friend's house the other day out of curiosity and I am now encouraged to open it.

When that stuff had just come out it was pretty much the summer drink for me and my friends. There was a mini mart across from my first apartment that had them for ridiculously cheap(like as cheap as normal 24oz cans of beer) and we would just buy entire baskets full of them and take them to the beach/park/roof of a building/etc and lay in the sun all day pounding them.

The best part is that at least at first, the cans looked so much like they were just some kind of lemonade tea or something that you could stand right in front of cops drinking them and never get hassled. Good times.

But yea, the stuff is tasty as hell. Especially the lemonade-tea one we used to call "Arnold Facepalmer"
posted by emptythought at 8:25 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


But the chart directly makes the comparison to other women, not to men, trying to show that age and attitudes about masturbation can suppress the will to do something that they argue is 100% beneficial and good (a view of masturbation that is very popular though I don't personally share it). Thus it is a bad thing that so few women are masturbating because if they would just do it they would apparently learn that it's great and good for them.

Also, the chart is not the basis for the argument that women's masturbatory habits are socially repressed, it's just some data that could back it up but the social context for the data is the focus. The link and the app's site both try to make that case using allusions to historical evidence of repression. I read the app's site carefully to understand the focus, and it's entirely on countering the messages women get about their sexuality and the propriety of this particular sex act.

The libido comparison to men is a derail because it doesn't take into account the social context of masturbation repression as it relates to women and that is what the link is directly attempting to address. Its countering the anti-masturbation messages with pro-masturbation messages designed for women, with the goal of encouraging more of this thing. Coming in and saying "no, the reason women don't masturbate as much as men is because they just don't have the sexual desire that men do" doesn't actually address anything in the link itself, and it also raises the question of why there has been so much effort to repress something that supposedly isn't there.
posted by Danila at 8:34 PM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


I think that's a pretty small inferential hop, one that ishrinkmajeans wasn't the first to make.

You could make that argument, but you have to actually make the argument, rather than making the leap and then being shocked when not everyone is on the same page. And approaching it as "this subject isn't worth talking about because of x" is really the wrong way to go about it. It would be totally on topic to say "they aren't presenting data that clearly supports their assertion that more masturbation = better, here are some possible assumptions that might be behind this" - the Anna Anthropy response that you linked to does that well, I think - and that does appear to be what ishrinkmajeans was trying to do. Unfortunately he got really hung up on proving those assumptions, which is where it turned into a derail - at that point, he wasn't talking about the question of female masturbation at all any more, and it all went sort of hostile. (The sideline about whether it's easier for women to get sex didn't help.)

Metafilter is not a rigidly one-topic-per-thread site, as you may have noticed here with all the beer and tea drinkers. But there's a point when a subtopic eats its own tail that it sometimes needs to be cut off for the sake of either the larger discussion, everyone's tempers, or both. In this case I think the larger themes are fine, but need to be handled with some care so it doesn't turn into yet another thread about women's issues where the only subject on the table is how it relates to men.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 8:36 PM on June 8, 2013 [6 favorites]


Right. I'm also pretty pro masturbation.

Strictly amateur over here. How do you get sponsors?


you have to work hard and keep it up
posted by whyareyouatriangle at 8:37 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


I think that's a pretty small inferential hop, one that ishrinkmajeans wasn't the first to make.

You could make that argument, but you have to actually make the argument, rather than making the leap and then being shocked when not everyone is on the same page.


So if jeans had started with a post closer to this one it might not be a derail?
posted by Drinky Die at 8:46 PM on June 8, 2013


Metafilter is not a rigidly one-topic-per-thread site, as you may have noticed here with all the beer and tea drinkers.

It's noticeable, yes, and at some point it becomes difficult not to eye-roll at a moderation policy that forbids discussing the actual topic that derailed the FPP a particular MeTa is about, but allows recipes and random chat about beer and the hundred other inanities that pop up in 200+ threads.

Why even have flags for noise, derail, etc on MetaTalk? You deactivate staff tags on MetaFilter and AskMe, so why not deactivate certain flags here? They obviously aren't used.
posted by cribcage at 8:50 PM on June 8, 2013 [4 favorites]


We very seldom delete anything from MetaTalk. And the long wind-down is an old tradition, one I find relatively irritating now that I have to read every comment, but it's relatively harmless as long as it waits until the initial topic has died down, which this one did for a while.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 8:53 PM on June 8, 2013


I'm also pretty pro masturbation.

Beats amateur, I suppose
posted by y2karl at 8:54 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Also, for the record, there is no such thing as a flushable clumping cat litter -- and why do they call them garbage disposals when they should properly be called soup disposals ?
posted by y2karl at 8:56 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


klang, I knew they had exported some of their beers, but I didn't realize they were that pricey. Then again, even here, they run about $4 a bottle when you can find them. Highest beer tax in the industrialized world (so high they make fake beer with no malt to get around the taxes, christ, some of it is even 'brewed' from peas...) lowest cigarette tax. Priorities are all screwed up here.
posted by Ghidorah at 9:07 PM on June 8, 2013


I'd dispute the notion that "the long wind-down" typically waits until a topic has died down. Either way, in this case the OP excused himself and the thread could have been closed at that point, if it's a matter of the initial topic being active or moot. And it may be true that comments are rarely deleted from MetaTalk for any reason, but that's not really responsive to the comparison between discussing the derail versus chitchatting. The former draws moderator admonitions, as a rule. As a rule, the latter doesn't.

I'd imagine it would indeed be irritating to have to keep a browser window open for that nonsense. To the defense that long wind-downs are a long tradition, my answer would be that the site didn't previously have a Chat feature. It does now. Maybe it's time to reconsider the policy.
posted by cribcage at 9:12 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


I have found this thread very hard to follow because of all the comments about beer and tea. I flagged a few as noise but remembered that flagging many in a thread causes work for the mods.

If metatalk threads are going to remain open for discussion it would be nice if the off-topic sharing took place elsewhere. I feel bad for making this suggestion because I didn't contribute anything (or haven't yet) and I feel like I am saying something anti-social. On the other hand I have followed this discussion with interest from the start and the off-topic chatting popped up quite early in the course of the thread, and shows no signs of abating in spite of the fact that commenters are trying to bring the thread back to the original subject matter.
posted by vincele at 9:13 PM on June 8, 2013 [5 favorites]


oh rubbish, it's not "very hard to follow": discussion of drink and tea does not come until the very end of the thread for good pleasures take time to chill or time to steep.
posted by whyareyouatriangle at 9:44 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


I thought size didn't matter? or is that just my wishful thinking at play?

Well, if you're skilled at, ah, using your beer...
posted by MissySedai at 9:55 PM on June 8, 2013


It's kind of like bringing a picnic to the auto-da-fé.
posted by infini at 9:58 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Some people didn't like it when the OP and/or his issues and questions were addressed after he'd left the thread, calling it a pile-on. Some people don't like it that people are not "piling on" and are instead discussing other things in non-inflammatory ways.

I've been flying for five hours, so I probably missed something here. Yes, my arms are tired.
posted by rtha at 10:10 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


You should use your legs too.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:24 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


Speaking as a lurker who has read a lot of MetaTalk threads (but participated in very few), it seems like the long wind-down serves a useful social function. If threads were closed as soon as discussion started to slack off, there would be a greater risk that people would feel they hadn't had a chance to weigh in on the subject of the thread. But even more importantly, a lot of emotions would still be running high. Discussions of neutral topics are basically just a chance for everyone to check in and metaphorically say "okay, things got kind of heated there but we're all still cool with each other, right? Right." The text is off-topic but the social subtext is still relevant to the thread.

Slacktivist used to accomplish this function by following up contentious or flame-ridden threads with posts about pie, where people could do their checking in/winding down/blowing off steam without derailing the original discussion. Maybe MetaChat could fill a similar function, but not everyone uses it, so allowing silly off-topic discussion in the original thread seems like the best way to give the community a chance to regain its equilibrium.
posted by fermion at 10:34 PM on June 8, 2013 [24 favorites]


Maybe pie would make my arms less tired. If not, well, pie!

Also, I think you are right about the purpose this winding down thing serves.
posted by rtha at 10:37 PM on June 8, 2013


The Winchester siblings have shown us the importance pie has as a finishing ritual.

Everybody needs pie.
posted by The Whelk at 10:39 PM on June 8, 2013 [2 favorites]


This thread needs... .pie flavored pie.
posted by The Whelk at 10:40 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Jesus, cribcage, from your kvetching you'd think it was you who had to read all these comments.
posted by klangklangston at 10:56 PM on June 8, 2013


fermion is exactly right. The wind-down is valuable and necessary; it's a resolution and a rebalancing. I was hoping that this thread would close up before anyone felt like fanning the flames again, and I'm kind of biting my tongue when I would really, really like to reply to lamdaphage loudly and at length... but I'll save it for the FPP which may or may not turn up on the blue. (Basically, I'm deeply suspicious of the methodology of the studies cited.)
posted by jokeefe at 10:57 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


"On the other hand I have followed this discussion with interest from the start and the off-topic chatting popped up quite early in the course of the thread, and shows no signs of abating in spite of the fact that commenters are trying to bring the thread back to the original subject matter."

The original complaint was HOW COME I CAN'T SOPHOMORE MANSPLAIN and commenters keep trying to say NO MY MANSPLAIN IS TOTALLY GERMANE… which is like the worst My Fair Lady.
posted by klangklangston at 10:58 PM on June 8, 2013 [11 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans: I wasn't being snarky. I was being whyyyyyyyyyyyny. Big difference.
posted by batmonkey at 11:01 PM on June 8, 2013


Mmm, pie.

I wish I knew someplace that made good Pumpkin Pie. With real whipped cream.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 11:11 PM on June 8, 2013


I'd imagine it would indeed be irritating to have to keep a browser window open for that nonsense.

Well, on the one hand I kind of get what you're saying here, cribcage, but on the other hand I feel like I need to note that you specifically have recently on a couple of occasions expressed an objection to the idea that Metatalk threads might end up closed on shortish (as in, on the order of an hour or two) notice when folks with slower engagement cycles on the site might not have a chance to get in on a thread between when the idea of closing it arises and when closure happens.

Realistically (and we have to be actively realistic about this stuff because we're actually managing it in real time), us not closing a metatalk thread means some errant chatter happening; the alternative is that we decline to close a thread but also rule it with an unblinking iron fist, which is not practical at all. People will deal with a thread being open in a variety of ways, including what they see as tension-ameliorating side-chatter. It's kind of a one-or-the-other thing; we can't in any reasonable way have both Metatalk threads staying open to let people have their say and threads not having this organic wandering and social tomfoolery, much as we do want people not to aggressively and preemptively derail discussions while they're still in their early stages and going strong.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:15 PM on June 8, 2013


This was a great fpp last year about how
much was unknown about the clitoris until recently. Like, 2009 recently.
posted by rtha at 11:25 PM on June 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yeah, this is where the all the oooey gooey fuzzy wuzzy stuff takes place no, there's no cabal
posted by infini at 11:55 PM on June 8, 2013


Non sequitors are the best part of unthreaded conversations.
posted by infini at 11:55 PM on June 8, 2013 [3 favorites]


>: "As far as turning off favorites, then I won't see them but everyone else will. I'm not sure why people think putting masking tape at the bottom of the tv is going to make the Blackhawks game not have a score."

Because you don't see the score so it is much less GRAR inducing when the hawks win 172 :2.


>: "I'd imagine it would indeed be irritating to have to keep a browser window open for that nonsense. To the defense that long wind-downs are a long tradition, my answer would be that the site didn't previously have a Chat feature. It does now. Maybe it's time to reconsider the policy."

Chat isn't a replacement for Meta (or any other part of the site for that matter) because it is neither logged nor partitioned by subject matter. Even when I'm bored and wonder over there I find the flow hard to follow if there are any significant number of people conversing. There is way to much noise to signal. I never got much into IRC either for just that reason.
posted by Mitheral at 12:01 AM on June 9, 2013


Jensen Acklesberry pie and Jared Piedalecki. Yum.
posted by Brody's chum at 12:02 AM on June 9, 2013


>: "The organizers can call it a century RIDE, but to certain people it will always be a century RACE."

Those people are obviously wrong, Wrong, WRONG!

>: "enjoy it while it lasts."

Just like HTTP:// in the address bar you'll be able to turn it back on and therefore view the web like god intended.

>: "you've just got to expose yourself, put yourself out there, and keep at it until something good happens"

Keep at it long enough and you'll get official sponsorship in the form of food, clothing, medical insurance and live in practice space.
posted by Mitheral at 12:13 AM on June 9, 2013


(...) yet another thread about women's issues where the only subject on the table is how it relates to men.

Hi. Too busy today to keep up with this fast moving thread, but... this.
posted by Devils Rancher at 12:17 AM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


The wind-down is valuable and necessary; it's a resolution and a rebalancing. I was hoping that this thread would close up before anyone felt like fanning the flames again,

Mmm, yes! A tactic to end dissenting opinions by giving vocal unconcerned citizens cookies for shutting the conversation down! This will never backfire! And never has!

Oh wait no.

If it's actually genuinely a good thing to end conversations like this, make people work for the pleasure. If the thread starter feels satisfied, turn it into a recipe thread. If they don't, then don't dismiss them by "rebalancing" the thread, but instead by calling them out and/or by ignoring them.
posted by tychotesla at 12:24 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


             (
              )
         __..---..__
     ,-='  /  |  \  `=-.
    :--..___________..--;
     \.,_____________,./ 
posted by The Whelk at 12:24 AM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


Mmmmm pie
posted by inpHilltr8r at 12:28 AM on June 9, 2013


Damn good pie

and damn good coffee.
posted by The Whelk at 12:29 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


WHY YOU GOTTA TEASE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT LIKE THAT?!

stupid pie cravings
posted by ApathyGirl at 12:30 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Hot *damn*, that pie's good... !
posted by mazola at 12:32 AM on June 9, 2013


I thought size didn't matter? or is that just my wishful thinking at play?
Well, if you're skilled at, ah, using your beer...

There really is no hope for me, then, is there?
posted by dg at 12:50 AM on June 9, 2013


the alternative is that we decline to close a thread but also rule it with an unblinking iron fist, which is not practical at all

In this-here particular meta, I think it would have been (would still be?) helpful and easy if a mod dropped a "cool it with the chit chat". The main topic was not really done and the side chatter kind of metastasized. Just how it seems to me, at least.
posted by fleacircus at 12:57 AM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


On the flip side, I've noticed your username because you seem to keep coming into threads and dropping whatever contrarian point of view you can almost reflexively. I know that's kind of fun in college to always be the "what if we got it all wrong?!" guy, but it's kind of tedious when there's a perfectly fine conversation taking place that gets derailed by a user saying they don't believe the basic premise of a post or purposely flip facts around to spark discussion or claim something with decades of law sounds flimsy.

See, I must just be way too much of a teacher's pet. Because I'm also new here and I wouldn't have the nerve to start my own MeTa. But if I did, and one of the earliest comments was from mathowie himself, and it was saying he'd noticed me - and not in a good way - I would be instantly mortified. I'd probably assume its his place so his answer is kind of definitive, and apologise and back away. I might take some time to look at my posting history and see if I could see what he meant, and think about how I could approach things differently. I didn't notice ISMJ even acknowledge it, and I've (tragically) followed this whole thread.

I really don't know whether to admire ISMJ for his brass neck, be annoyed at him for being so wilfully and deliberately blind to the many, many explanations of why his point was a derail, or exasperated that everyone else has essentially added him to some kind of Wall of Infamy by keeping it going so long. (Hey, maybe I'm just jealous - he's been here less time than me and the Big Guy knows his naaaaaame.)

Now, I need to relieve some stress, so I'm off to practice. That sponsorship won't come calling by itself.
posted by billiebee at 1:04 AM on June 9, 2013 [22 favorites]


I respect mathowie for his creation and maintenance of this site. That said I don't treat his logic or defense of his position to any higher or lower standard than that I treat for every other poster here. I hope that makes sense.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 1:38 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans, what is your favorite kind of beer and/or pie?
posted by Jacqueline at 1:45 AM on June 9, 2013


yeah, it makes sense in the fact that you wrote it in language I kinda understand.
posted by Packed Lunch at 1:49 AM on June 9, 2013


Ah, ishrinkmajeans, you have returned; good morning. Hope you are on a larger screen, as agentofselection suggested, for less frustration in reading/replying.

Do you drink tea and, if so, which leaf takes your fancy?
posted by Wordshore at 1:50 AM on June 9, 2013


Yeah, let's drop this we-all-question-ISMJ-on-the-beer/pie/tea thing. Thanks.
posted by taz (staff) at 1:52 AM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


I opened this link over an hour ago, and am struggling to find something constructive to say. OP, may I suggest the essay "Invisible Knapsack". I hope it will help explain to you why some people in this community reacted so poorly to your original comments. You do not come across as a troll to me. It seems like you don't agree with mathowie's remark earlier, but really the essence that I would take from it is the importance of turning contrarian tendencies into a perceptive and robust kind of skepticism. Because the community could always use more comments that are interesting and insightful.

Hope the weather is nice today!
posted by polymodus at 2:04 AM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


Sorry, ishrinkmajeans, but that doesn't make sense to me. Mathowie isn't some abstracted founding principle; he's literally our host here. You don't need to agree with him, but if you think that he's fundamentally wrong about the way things are run around here you might be better off finding a different place for yourself.

That said, there's a big part of me that hopes that you take a few days to consider all the advice in this thread and stick around. Your posts have rubbed me the wrong in many ways, but at the same time you remind me a lot of my own young days on the internet. I actually suspect this identification with you has caused a lot of the bristling at your behavior; most of us that grew up feeling clever and a bit alienated from our peers are painfully familiar with the memory of knowing so much but being oblivious to all the things we didn't know.

Anyway, whether you decide to give us more of a chance on the community's term or you head elsewhere, I wish you luck. You seem like a smart young man.
posted by a box and a stick and a string and a bear at 2:07 AM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


"I respect mathowie for his creation and maintenance of this site. That said I don't treat his logic or defense of his position to any higher or lower standard than that I treat for every other poster here. I hope that makes sense."

Surely the subject makes a big difference. Atmospheric physics? There's no reason to place any particular importance on his opinion. MetaFilter etiquette and standards of behavior? It's idiotic to fail to place particular importance on his opinion. It's something he is, naturally, an expert on. And that's what his comment to you was about, not the science of human sex differences.

Your previous comment about your doctor friend's opinion was significant. You posted it to show that an authority agreed with you (not that a random MD is any more a definitive source on human sexuality than Wikipedia, but let's put that aside). But your response to his point that you were trolling was that it made you "sad", which I interpret as implying that you think you were not.

These are similar examples and they are representative of your conduct through this entire thread. You've focused on your claim that your argument about sexuality is correct and you've focused on your claim that you were mistreated. You've utterly ignored, refused to even consider, your own conduct. While most of the thread has been about how you participate here and why your participation in that thread and some others has been disruptive, you've simply ignored this. Matt, an expert on this subject, and the doctor, a disinterested observer (or even, presumably, someone external to MeFi but who, in knowing you personally, is predisposed to your perspective), both offered critiques of your behavior and you've utterly dismissed them.

People keep saying that you're young, I haven't checked your profile, but I can say that you've behaved very much as I would have behaved when I was in my early twenties. For me, and I think for many people, at that age it was very hard to separate out the various issues of actually knowing things; being aware of the things I didn't know; how my knowing things and often being isolated in my interests and knowledge affected how I interacted with others; what it meant that I was, in practice, sometimes contrarian and often controversial and how that altered how I thought about my own thought process and how it altered my understanding of how the people around me think; and, finally, how tentative, temporary, and often illusory being "right" really is.

It's certainly not the case that I, or most anyone else, have worked out all these things over the course of our adult lives and we're models of wisdom and perfect behavior. It still matters far too much to me, emotionally, to be "right". The only reason this hasn't distorted my personality to monstrous proportions is because I've conditioned my fear of being wrong to act as a check on it. I can still be a prick. Even so, from the distance of age, a lot of competing impulses and triggered behaviors and habits of thought are all much more recognizable to me, distinct, in a way that markedly contrasts against the mostly undifferentiated soup it all was for me when I was 22.

Your comment about mathowie reveals a triggered anti-authoritarian response. It's not thoughtful, it's a reflex. A lot of what you've done here are reflexes which you confuse with being thoughtful. That's okay, it's human, but this is an opportunity for you to gain some insight, some feedback, on it from the outside and you're strongly resisting it. Which is also human, but you'd be better-off otherwise.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 2:27 AM on June 9, 2013 [23 favorites]


Mathowie wasn't defending a position, he was telling you how this thing, that he created and keeps going, tends to work. There's good reason to believe that he's pretty much the expert on that.

Not all information is created equal, and neither are all those who give information created equal.
posted by Too-Ticky at 2:30 AM on June 9, 2013 [7 favorites]


I have no idea what Elizardbits meant by "bro", but it can definitely mean frat boy or meathead. I've seen "dudebro" used the same way.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 2:38 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I can't beleive people are having problems seeing how bro could be used derogatorily. Who's the most prominent of bros out there right now? Barney Stinsen; I mean he wrote the book. I'd be pissed right off if anyone implied I resembled that deceitful, misogynist, manipulative, drunken, yuppie rapist.
posted by Mitheral at 3:10 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Bro doesn't always have such malignant intent. But, yeah, comparing anyone to Barney Stinson would be derogatory to anyone with a shred of human decency.
posted by dg at 3:24 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


I respect mathowie for his creation and maintenance of this site. That said I don't treat his logic or defense of his position to any higher or lower standard than that I treat for every other poster here. I hope that makes sense.

If it's issues concerning MetaFilter, and the nature of MetaFilter, I try and give more weight to people who have been here longer and been more involved. May still not agree with them (and, hey, I'm free to wander off to my own blogs, reddit, ALA Think Tank et al at any time if the disagreement is strong enough), but have to acknowledge that they have the experience of this site that I don't possess. Part of a gradual realization that the first year on MetaFilter is arguably an orientation year.
posted by Wordshore at 3:27 AM on June 9, 2013


For those who were interested in dry-hopped cider...

I was mistaken that the dry-hopped cider I enjoyed was from Vermont. It was from New York. It's called Doc's Draft Dry-Hopped Cider and is made by Warwick Valley Winery & Distillery (scroll to the bottom).

That website has information on where to buy and who their distributors are. I am *not* affiliated with them. Cheers.
posted by terrapin at 4:25 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Yes, I also think the accusations of trolling were unfortunate. I don't think ishrinkmyjeans is necessarily arguing in bad faith, or at least I don't believe he thinks he is. It's the same with corb. I'm not quite sure what her deal is yet, but I don't think she's a troll. I read her more as someone with very a set of very strongly-held personal opinions, that are somewhat unconventional, and that at times do not appear to be internally consistent to observers. At times these opinions have been offensive to other members, or expressed in offensive ways, but I believe that she's operating in good faith (that is, not just out to get people all riled up).

Similarly, I think ishrinkmyjeans is genuinely trying to make a contribution, but doing it in a way that can come across as trolling. If he had come into a thread about Brown v. Board of Education, and said something like "But the Negroid race is intellectually inferior, evolutionary theory has proved it." and then linked the Wikipedia for Herbert Spencer and said "Don't you believe in science?"- that would be trolling, and it would likely have gotten him banned before he could even get to phase two (stubbornly insisting on your point while ignoring all evidence to the contrary).

What has happened here, is that he has made a problematic assertion, that is also offensive to a number of members here; and then, when the problematic nature of that assertion has been pointed out, gone about defending that assertion in a manner that looks like trolling. However, I think he has done this in the belief that he is making a good-faith contribution to the discussion, and now pride is on the line. Some of this seems to be coming from a misunderstanding of the site's culture- not just the favorites thing, but the degree of self-awareness and self-criticism that participating in discussions here can sometimes require. Someone upthread described him as sounding like someone in his first year of college. I was probably like this in my first year of grad school (it broke me of that pretty quickly, though).



NO MY MANSPLAIN IS TOTALLY GERMANE… which is like the worst My Fair Lady.

...5, 6, 7, 8

*sings*

I could have snarked all night!
I could have snarked all night!
And still have begged for more.
I could have spread my wings
And done a thousand things
I've never done before.
I'll never know what made it so exciting;
Why all at once my heart took flight.
I only know when he
Began to snark with me
I could have snarked, snarked, snarked all niiiiight!



*crickets*

*cough*
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 5:25 AM on June 9, 2013 [9 favorites]


Can't contribute to discussions on beer and it's too hot for pie right now, but I got some nice gin recently from some dinner guests and I had some rhubarb I needed to use up so I made rhubarb syrup for cocktail making. Anyone know of other uses?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 5:42 AM on June 9, 2013


I need to hear the sung version of that.
posted by Jacqueline at 5:43 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Trust me, you really don't.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 5:47 AM on June 9, 2013


I really, really, really do!!!
posted by Jacqueline at 5:48 AM on June 9, 2013


If I can get a hold of Julie Andrews, then maybe.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 5:49 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


What about cortex?
posted by Jacqueline at 5:51 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I've never heard cortex's Eliza Doolittle, so I'll have to take your word for it.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 6:03 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


I'll play Rex Harrison to cortex's Eliza

"Wouldn't it be lurverly?"
posted by infini at 6:17 AM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


I've never heard cortex's Eliza Doolittle, so I'll have to take your word for it.

Got it covered.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 6:29 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


How does the Up-Speaker Cortex not know the word "snarked"?!
posted by Jacqueline at 6:32 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


I don't treat his logic or defense of his position to any higher or lower standard than that I treat for every other poster here. I hope that makes sense.

It does make sense. But in this case it's using the wrong tool. Don't think of it as a defense of his position, think of it as a ruling in a case of law.

Lots of people (including me for big chunks of my life) think that logic can resolve anything.; it's a very strong tool, why shouldn't it be omnipotent? Well, in ordinary, sub-lunar life, some times there is no definitive decision between two opposing options, and the best we can do is pick a line somewhere between the two and say "'Yes' up to here, but 'No' to anything on the other side".

If you like aphorisms, "We resort to Law when Logic doesn't deliver". It's not as satisfying as the single answers logic delivers, and it drives some personality types crazy. But here on MeFi, explicitly and in contrast to a lot of other places on the Internet, we let human judgement give the final ruling, and not the set of propositions derivable from a set of axioms. And the judgements of certain people (mods), carry greater force than others.

ishrinkmajeans, Welcome to MetaFilter!
posted by benito.strauss at 6:33 AM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


> Maybe it's time to reconsider the policy.

Or you could just avoid threads that irritate you this much.
posted by languagehat at 6:45 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


I was cleaning the catbox when it went up, or I would have cut it out before everyone jumped on it.

As a former e2 user, I thought this was the hip way of saying you were moderating chat, until I realized you probably were literally cleaning a catbox.
posted by Jpfed at 6:51 AM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


I think there is a behavior which is not exactly trolling but is more accurately something like witnessing. You see the same behavior in door-to-door proselytism: the overt aim is to convert the listener, of course, but in the face of a statistically huge majority of rejections another aim has emerged, which is simply to plug away at saying this stuff, in order to please an external or internal higher power.

It looks a lot like trolling, but differs in that the goal is not to elicit an outraged response, specifically - rather, the content of the response is of almost no interest to the speaker, unless and insofar as it provides an opportunity to restate or expound further upon the initial opinion.

That's spiritually different, and comes from a spiritually different place, but in practical terms it behaves in kind of the same way. As does the single-issue troll or the de facto troll - someone who is so passionate about a single topic that they can't talk about that one thing without ruining the conversation, or someone who, despite having nothing but the best intentions, is simply not able to interact with a discussion because of a fundamental difference in culture or approach.

ishrinkmajeans, it's impossible to know what's going on in your head right now - and whether it maps to any or none of the above possibilities. I feel like people jump to "troll" - i.e. a diagnosis of active malice - far too quickly around here. But your behavior so far is flagging you as a problem (and also an opportunity for yuks, alas).

With that in mind, here's something I wish someone had mentioned to me a lot earlier in my life. If you have been made seething mad by something, you are not going to be able to judge how ably you are discussing it, or how you are coming across, until you have calmed down a little, regardless of how good your arguments are. It's something that's hard to apply consistently, because often one is not a good judge of one's own emotional state, but if one is typing out "I am seething mad" that's probably a good sign.

It's an ongoing journey, and I'm certainly in no position to preach. It's just something I've noticed in myself and am trying to apply.
posted by running order squabble fest at 7:22 AM on June 9, 2013 [19 favorites]


I have been seething mad for over an hour now.

All my sweaters are snagged. I mean ALL of them.
posted by flabdablet at 7:45 AM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


That said I don't treat his logic or defense of his position to any higher or lower standard than that I treat for every other poster here. I hope that makes sense.

This doesn't make sense to me.

When my boss at work makes a rule I don't like (which he recently did), I can talk to him about ways in which I think that rule is bad or unhelpful or counterproductive, but when it comes down to it, he's the boss, and I have to give his words more weight. If the owner of the place where I get my donuts makes a rule I don't like, well, they're the donut shop owner - I can think their rule is illogical or dumb or will lose them money, but it's their donut shop, and I must give their words more weight than those of some customer.

So when the owner of this site outlines ways in which your behavior is problematic, you can disagree with him, but in the end, so what? His position does matter more, whatever you think.
posted by rtha at 7:59 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


When my boss at work makes a rule I don't like...

...to be fair, you're a grown-up.
posted by pompomtom at 8:11 AM on June 9, 2013


Oh this could be FUN. Been called and called every name in the book even a few mods before they were mods. I try not to now because there some cleaver folk with esoteric come-backs. I do remeber thinking If I do, use the 19th century English slang dictionary which I found via LH...which that clever bastard had me spun up for a week learning something more then how to insult. The key to verbosity is brevity which usually winds up a negation... GOD that was clever.

and sometimes, some of us need good dose of verbose rebuttal when going off the rails. For example this gem by General Klang.

The original complaint was HOW COME I CAN'T SOPHOMORE MANSPLAIN and commenters keep trying to say NO MY MANSPLAIN IS TOTALLY GERMANE… which is like the worst My Fair Lady.
posted by klangklangston

(thats a screen cleaner boy-howdy)

I love this place.
posted by clavdivs at 8:42 AM on June 9, 2013 [6 favorites]


tservo: "I don't see a point in trying to win a debate in a masturbation thread, since you're only proving to the world that you are the biggest wanker."

How else do you show that you're a master debater?
posted by radwolf76 at 9:22 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I find it amusing that people are making appeals to my age (as an indicator of immaturity) and then posting beer recipes and generally derailing the thread. If the best way you know of how to deal with someone you think derails threads is to derail their thread I question your integrity and maturity.

As far as thinking through my argument, I just want to say I really appreciate the thoughtful responses that lambdaphage contributed. He not only looked at the original issue and reconstructed my argument more articulately than I was able to he also sourced and found proofs for everything very beautifully.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:23 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I am not surprised that the specific response you found thoughtful out of a thread with many thoughtful, even kind, responses to you is the sole one that agrees with your original point.

You have an absolute obsession with being right. Have you ever been wrong, or do you ever expect to be wrong in the future?
posted by gilrain at 9:27 AM on June 9, 2013 [18 favorites]


I find it amusing that people are making appeals to my age (as an indicator of immaturity) and then posting beer recipes and generally derailing the thread. If the best way you know of how to deal with someone you think derails threads is to derail their thread I question your integrity and maturity.

...yeah, you really don't get how MetaTalk (or MetaFilter) works. Hence the recommendations from several people to keep observing instead of proclaiming you know it all. That's probably the best advice you've received here.
posted by palomar at 9:27 AM on June 9, 2013 [15 favorites]


ISMJ: As has been mentioned above, the food-related frivolity that often starts to arise near the end of a long thread is a longstanding site tradition. Once again, you're coming in to an already existing situation and declaring that YOU KNOW HOW THINGS SHOULD BE DONE AND WE'RE ALL DOING IT RONG.

And of course you think the responses from lambdaphage are "thoughtful", the argument "articulate", and the proofs "beautiful". lambdaphage's one of the few people in this discussion who agrees with you. It's worth noting that lambdaphage is also one of the few people in this discussion who's ignoring direct instruction from the mods that because MeTa is not MeFi, this is not the place to have the discussion he's trying to have, so don't do it here.
posted by Lexica at 9:30 AM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


Pointing out a thread or poster that I found insightful does not mean that is the sole person I found helpful. Nor was it the sole post that agrees with me (although most do not). It was the sole post that looked at the arguments and found that men do in fact have a higher sex drive than women as a well sourced statement of fact which no one else bothered to do. This fact has nothing with my or anyone else's desire to be right, nor is it right in proportional to that desire. It's just true, but of 600+ posts he is the only one who looked. He also saw why there was a well grounded argument from this point to the problematic framing of the article. In short I was just really impressed with him and I wanted to say that publicly.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:35 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


If the best way you know of how to deal with someone you think derails threads is to derail their thread I question your integrity and maturity.

Notwithstanding the fact that the conventions on MetaFilter and MetaTalk are quite different with regard to introducing subject matter unrelated to the original post (which has been discussed at length in this very thread and which you would know about had you taken the advice offered several times to familiarize yourself with the culture of the site), and notwithstanding the hundreds of compassionate, well-thought-out responses to both your comments in the original thread and your concerns expressed here (which you refuse to learn from, appreciate, or even acknowledge), perhaps you are correct and there is simply not enough integrity and maturity here for you.
posted by headnsouth at 9:36 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


It's just true, but of 600+ posts he is the only one who looked.

Except these 600+ posts are because your original post is about name calling, and the mods have explicitly stated that this thread is not the place to have the argument you wanted to have in the original thread.
posted by troika at 9:39 AM on June 9, 2013 [6 favorites]


Ishrinkmajeans:

Your comment was a derail in that it compared women to men, and the thread was about women's shame issues as related to masturbation. So it should have been deleted for derailing. Do not take it personally! Despite the pile-on and unnecessary speculations as to your age and immaturity in this thread, which is uncalled for, most of us here on Metafilter have had comments deleted!

I can understand your upset and confusion though, having read both the original thread and this one, because that derailing comment was allowed to stand when last Imchecked the thread, while your attempts to back up your comment were not. That...well, that makes no sense. Even if the sources you used were questionable, if the original comment was the derail, that's where the pruning should have started.

Your opinion about women's libidos vs. men's libidos, i.e. that women's libidos on average tend to be lower than men's libidos on average is well-supported by research, to such an extent that it is considered a given but not an acceptable opinion to hold, apparently, here on Metafilter.

I think this is because many women, and also many men who support feminist ideals, are frankly sick of of sexist and misogynist comments based on specious reasoning being trotted out as a 'defense' against the need for much-needed conversations about women's issues. As a feminist, I can tell you that it gets really tiringto have to deal with both overt and insidious misogyny on a daily basis on the internet, especially when the discussion is about women's issues.

So, when someone comes in basically saying, as you did, 'This supposition is flawed because it doesn't take into account that women (on average) have lower libidos than men do (on average),' they hear and respond to what they feel you are insinuating: 'This study is not worth discussing because it doesn't focus on men too!'

To them, the issue is not the veracity of what you said, but the fact that you brought men's experiences into a women's issues thread at all. And yes, that IS a derail. Which, frankly, you made more inflammatory by tacking on your little aside about how it is 'easier' for women to have sex more often than men. It would help, Ishrankmajeans, if you took a step back and tried to see where they were coming from; it is not whether what you said was true or not but why you felt it needed to be said in that thread at all that rankled.

So, that's your first point and objection seriously addressed.

The second point you made was that elizardbits insulted you. And yes, she did, and there really should not be an argument about that. I, like many here, love elizardbits for her frequently hilarious and spot-on observations. She's a popular contributor to the site, for good reason. It seems obvious that it is because of her popularity that she is getting a pass on what she said, though, and that's just not right.

If you, ISMJ, dismissed someone else by hurling vituperatives at their argument and calling them "bro" derisively (as it is absolutely intended to be derisive in that comment, and anyone arguing it isn't is being willfully obtuse), you would be brought to task for it, and rightfully so. Since elizardbits did not offer any argument at all disputing what you said, which would beperfectly cromulent, but simply dismissed it as patriarchal bullshit, etc., either her comment should have been deleted, too, or a mod should have admonished her to dial it down in the thread.

So, yeah, I agree with you there.

I understand your confusion and upset at how that thread was moderated, too, ISMJ, because the original comment you made, which was a derail, was not deleted, while your attempts to support it were. That makes no sense. Since it is a derail, that is where the deleting should have begun. Allowing the comment to stand and not allowing you to defend it, in my opinion, makes it seem like Metafilter doesn't want anyone to see evidence of contrary opinions maybe being factually supported, which is not at all the case, at least in my opinion.

So, yes, I can see your frustration, but it comes from a mistaken assumption. You were not getting deleted because you were wrong, but because what you were arguing had no place in the context of the thread.

Still, I can also see where you would be confused on that score, ISMJ. Because in this Metatalk, we are seeing people coming forward to agree with the deletions because they feel elizardbits was right and you were wrong. Which misses the point.

There are a few people who have taken the rather extremist (and not supported by facts) stance that men and women must be seen as equivalent in all things. This, I think, is kind of a lazy debate tactic, like a cheat code in a game. The tactic is a handy shortcut to keep them from having to go over the same ground over and over again about how women deserve to be treated equally, which is of course true. They should not have to debate such an obvious truism. It should be accepted, and women's experiences should be respected and accepted as a matter of course.

But insisting there are no sex-based differences between women and men in aggregate is just plain wrong, no matter how fervently they may want to believe it. It is magical thinking. Women and men are biologically, constitutionally different. Not better, not worse, but obviously different--and viva la difference, in my opinion. I like being a woman, and have no desire to be the same as a man.

But, anyway, you will hear these people insist, for instance, that men and women's libidos are the SAME! Or that, if anything, women's are greater! Because they are afraid that admitting there are differences opens the gateway to more misogyny.

And they will use anecdotal evidence--which would NOT fly if it came from any other context than women's issues, because we are fighting a hard battle here, feminists, and people recognize that, but it still doesn't make it right--to support their argument. So when EmpressCallipygos says women have stronger libidos than men because, hey, hers is stronger than the man she is with or whatever, while she is no doubt telling the truth for her, it is not a good-faith argument, and not a counterpoint to women, on average, having lower libidos than men, on average. Which, yes, is supported by factual studies. I found an overwhelming body of evidence to that effect, but this Meta is not, as the mods point out, intended to take on that issue.

TL; DR version: So, ISMJ,I didn't flag what you said, because to me your comment offered an opening for an examination of whether shame was or was not a factor for women, which I think it definitely can be, and I think a surprising number of younger Mefites don't even realize that yes, this is a Thing that happens or at least happened. I know women who have struggled with "good girls don't do THIS" feelings, especially those who have been exposed to repressive religious or moralistic double standards. There were some excellent comments demonstrating that in the thread, too. So I didn't really see it going off the rails in the way the mods feared it might after your derail.

Oh, and there are other derails in that thread that probably should come out, too, and I'm going to make sure I flag those as well. Like the comment complaining about "men" pushing clitorises like elevator buttons, because seriously, WTF? That has nothing to do with women and masturbation, either!
posted by misha at 9:39 AM on June 9, 2013 [19 favorites]


Except these 600+ posts are because your original post is about name calling, and the mods have explicitly stated that this thread is not the place to have the argument you wanted to have in the original thread.

Even the original thread wasn't the place. Believe me, if I thought the points you were trying to make were worth engaging, I'd have engaged them. But it's a flaccid, tired and shallow discsussion and not worth another ride on the merry-go-round, let alone not even really being germane to the discussion, at least not in the way it was raised.

Don't confuse taking a pass on lame contestations in inappropriate places with an inability to research and contest.
posted by Miko at 9:45 AM on June 9, 2013 [11 favorites]


I find it amusing that people are making appeals to my age (as an indicator of immaturity)

I find it amusing that you can say this after you stuffed your fingers in your ears and said you don't have to give the words of the Head Guy of this site any more weight than you would those of a random mefite.
posted by rtha at 9:50 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


Oh, and there are other derails in that thread that probably should come out, too, and I'm going to make sure I flag those as well. Like the comment complaining about "men" pushing clitorises like elevator buttons, because seriously, WTF? That has nothing to do with women and masturbation, either!

Please don't. We don't usually delete stuff at all two days after the fact, and it's not going to do anything except make us clear more flags. As I've said, the original comment stood because I didn't get to it in time (and because, as I've also said, the initial comment was only partially an obvious derail, and could have gone well if it had been handled better.)
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 9:50 AM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


misha thank you for your response, that was very nice.

Your comment was a derail in that it compared women to men, and the thread was about women's shame issues as related to masturbation. So it should have been deleted for derailing.

The reason I did not think it was a derail was because the framing of the article was "women aren't masturbating enough!" and cites some statistics of how often women masturbate. Which begs the question "often enough as compared to what?" If women have lower libidos than men the only reasonable conclusion I could draw, given that in our current culture it is relatively easy to purchase sex toys and we have a pretty open sexual culture (not everywhere, but as a comparison to a "1950s mindset"), was that they were using the frequency of male masturbation as a normative judgement against which to compare women.

From a statement of feminism, my position was that they had internalized a standard of conduct as compared to men and were therefore not feminist enough!

Bringing up male masturbation had nothing to do with taking the spotlight away from women in the thread. In retrospect I should have been more careful in my wording (clearly) but it does make me question the knee jerk response people seem to have. Because you feel strongly about an issue (especially because you feel strongly) the first reaction shouldn't be to drown out a poster you disagree with and then stifle what he has to say in a thread by deleting his posts rather than responding to his logic.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 9:55 AM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


I find it amusing that people are making appeals to my age (as an indicator of immaturity)

Nobody here actually knows your age. They are sympathising with your self-centred arrogance because it appears to be the self-centred arrogance of youth.

They are posting silly beer things because mature people are happy enough to enjoy a little silliness now and then.

Just like they are happy enough to have conversations where the goal is sharing of information, not winning.
posted by ambrosen at 9:58 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


Bringing up male masturbation had nothing to do with taking the spotlight away from women in the thread.

I don't know how we got here, but I think what a lot of people took issue with was your assertion that women have lower libidos than men, and telling people to "look it up" when they challenged you on this.

I'm glad you finally engaged with someone in this thread who offered a valid criticism of what went wrong there, out of the hundreds, but I gotta say:

From a statement of feminism, my position was that they had internalized a standard of conduct as compared to men and were therefore not feminist enough!

kinda made me wince.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 10:06 AM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


So it appears what you have learned from this thread is not the many pieces of constructive advice on how to have discussions on MeFi and the subsites as well as the site mechanics, but rather that as long as you can find one person who supports you and one who is snarky, then you must be right and everybody who disagrees is being mean to you, and therefore the rules should change to suit your style.

Fantastic.
posted by zombieflanders at 10:07 AM on June 9, 2013 [18 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans: "I find it amusing that people are making appeals to my age (as an indicator of immaturity)"

Personally, I hope you're young, because I remember being rigidly sure of my own opinions and dogmatic in defending them when I was younger. If you're young, the chances are better that with age you'll learn the value of things like questioning your own assumptions, listening to others and trying to find what's true in what they say rather than what you can refute, doing research before making assertions, and things like that. If you're not young, chances are lower that you're going to change, and everybody here has been wasting their time trying to help you get a sense of how things work around here.

I'm out of here. It's a gorgeous day outside and all the roads around Lake Merritt are going to be closed to motor vehicles from 11:00 to 4:00 today. That seems like a much better way to spend my time than continuing to observe this apparently fruitless discussion.

Good luck. I mean that sincerely. I hope you are able, eventually, to gain a different perspective on how you're doing things.
posted by Lexica at 10:09 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


Bringing up male masturbation had nothing to do with taking the spotlight away from women in the thread.

Yes it absolutely did, and in a way that many women (myself included) see far too often and are sick of dealing with. You regularly make sexist comments on this site so I can see how elizardbits got frustrated and made her reply in a less than perfect manner (note: I have no idea what kind of person you are, this may not be how you intend on coming across and may even be a surprise to you, but the comments themselves sure are sexist). But we're also kind of sick of being told off for how we react to sexism rather than having the original problem addressed. Basically we can't win.

The way you've been interacting with the site so far doesn't seem sustainable to me. When someone this new even has mathowie taking note then yeah. Hopefully you'll step back, think about why you're coming across so badly, think about someone else's viewpoint for a change and start being a more productive member. But if it goes the other way (flame-out, banning) I won't be too upset, just get it over with so we can move on to something more interesting.
posted by shelleycat at 10:13 AM on June 9, 2013 [14 favorites]


I find it amusing that people are making appeals to my age (as an indicator of immaturity)

You have this backwards.

You'd have a point here if we were pre-judging your behavior based on your age. But we don't know your age. We're judging your age based on your behavior. Based on your behavior, you do indeed appear to be quite young.
posted by ook at 10:26 AM on June 9, 2013 [9 favorites]


You are talking at us. You're not engaging with anyone but choice pieces of data that suits the script that is already running in your head. If reality was this malleable, not a single grandmaster would have stopped writing.



*Moroccan Mint with spices helps with the menopause fwiw*
posted by infini at 10:26 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


the framing of the article was "women aren't masturbating enough!" and cites some statistics of how often women masturbate. Which begs the question "often enough as compared to what?"

For example: as compared to as often as they could. There was really no reason to bring men into the picture.

From a statement of feminism

Sorry, I can't parse this. What do you mean?

deleting his posts rather than responding to his logic.

Which logic are you talking about? I didn't see you using any.
I saw you state 'this is true because everyone knows that it's obvious' and then move on to 'look it up, it's true' and eventually 'it's true, see [source]' but none of that is what I'd call logic.
posted by Too-Ticky at 10:29 AM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


I think the best thing life has taught me is that acknowledging I am wrong about something or have made a mistake, and that people I disagree with make good points (even if I disagree with them!) does not kill me or shame me or make me weak. Neither does walking away from an argument, whether or not I'm "right."
posted by rtha at 10:30 AM on June 9, 2013 [6 favorites]


I have often snarked on this site before
Put the pixels never seemed to be so bright before
All at once am I several stories high
Knowing I'm on the street where you snark



I'm more of a baritone anyway
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 10:30 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


zombieflanders I don't believe that what is true is subject to popularity nor do I think that even one person being rude is acceptable. The times I have been rude or not addressed someones position with the integrity of rhetoric are embarrassing to me and I hope that the same is true for other people. But often, even if I don't like a fact, if it can be proven then I must accept it.

As far as site mechanics go I feel I have learned a great deal, but not all of it conducive to discussion. I don't know how I feel about posting favorites next to comments so it is visible to all users for example. Even if some users here don't treat it as a scoreboard, it seems like posting numbers of "favorites" visible next to a comment is just a way to inspire popularity contests. If it was truly used as a bookmarking system there wouldn't need to be an ongoing tally. I am aware I can turn the visibility off, but the fact that the visibility is there for some users will mean that scoring points will be a motivation for users to post vitriol and arguments from emotion. I feel that this is counter productive to good discussion.

I don't know how the flagging system works either. If enough people flag a post as a derail then the mods may take it down, but I don't know if this is ranked by popularity or not. They probably have leeway in what they personally think of a given post.

shelleycat I don't see how my comments are sexist after rereading through my post history. If you would like to memail posts that you find offensive I can take another look or talk with you about it. As far as the posts under discussion are concerned they either deal in proven statements of fact or beliefs that womens' actions shouldn't be normatively compared to mens'. Neither of which are sexist.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 10:35 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I have been seething mad for over an hour now.

I used to work with a guy who I witnessed using this as a tactic in meetings a lot. We'd challenge him on a point and just because we disagreed with him, we were bad and stupid people and he'd escalate to "I'm about to lose my mind" without any provocation. First time I saw this happen, I had to do a double take as the disagreement was civil and was supported by experienced people in the room. He kept doing this in multiple meetings and he never got the hint despite senior management telling him to shut it down. I understood his passion for his subject, however he refused to believe that other people were at least as knowledgeable as him. He took completely the wrong approach and didn't learn from the advice he was being given. He was laid off last month. This was a guy with a wife, a kid and a mortgage. Extremely sad, but no-one could work with him.

Please don't be this guy.
posted by arcticseal at 10:38 AM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


I don't know how the flagging system works either. If enough people flag a post as a derail then the mods may take it down, but I don't know if this is ranked by popularity or not. They probably have leeway in what they personally think of a given post.

A moderator looks at every flag. Heavily flagged stuff will get a quicker look and may inform their choices on close issues but ultimately it's up to the moderators.
posted by Drinky Die at 10:38 AM on June 9, 2013


Hey, sorry I posted the cider recipe, which was off-topic to the main thrust of the OP's post. I sort of thought the thread had been winding down, and didn't think there was much harm in it, but let's be honest, I was also just excited about this drink and let that get the better of my judgement, because I think it's gonna be a really good drink for the summer.

To address the favorites thing, though:
Even if some users here don't treat it as a scoreboard, it seems like posting numbers of "favorites" visible next to a comment is just a way to inspire popularity contests.

I believe it was It's Raining Florence Henderson who said, in some other thread about favorites, something along the lines of: "Look, I'd still be just as much of a jackass, whether there's a number after my comment or not." I guess I can speak only for myself here, but if I'm dickish or gauche or twee or nasty or corny or evasive or in any other way otherwise eschew "the integrity of rhetoric," it has nothing to do with the number of favorites I do or do not get.
posted by Greg Nog at 10:43 AM on June 9, 2013 [7 favorites]


the fact that the visibility is there for some users will mean that scoring points will be a motivation for users to post vitriol and arguments from emotion.

Just because you feel threatened by favorites doesn't mean everyone does. Some of us find them entertaining. So, don't go oppressing my favorites, bro.
posted by octobersurprise at 10:46 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


I am aware I can turn the visibility off, but the fact that the visibility is there for some users will mean that scoring points will be a motivation for users to post vitriol and arguments from emotion.

For what it's worth, I use favourites as a bookmarking system, but look at what other people have favourited -- not just in my own comments -- to see what kinds of comments are useful and interesting, and try to write those kinds more. Very clever snark will always get favourites, but heavily favourited posts are also often informative and well-written and useful, and I at least like to aim there.

I know some people consider it a scoring system, but there are a lot of ways to interpret scores, and that doesn't mean that all people use it that way.
posted by jeather at 10:47 AM on June 9, 2013


I don't know how the flagging system works either.

Flags draw the mods' attention to an item (post or comment), there is no level of flagging that leads to auto-delete. We take a look and decide what action to take on it. (Sometimes we delete, sometimes leave it an leave a note in the thread, sometimes send a MeMail to the person behind the scenes.)

More things get flagged than get deleted - and that is fine. Flags over time let us see what kinds of things people find to be objectionable, which is useful but still doesn't lead to auto-deleting. In rare cases, something might pick up a ton of flags when a mod doesn't expect it to... and in those cases, sometimes the thing gets deleted and sometimes not, again depending on the mod's judgment. If there is a really borderline item, we'll talk it over on the moderator email list.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 10:47 AM on June 9, 2013


I don't see how my comments are sexist

suggesting that women have an easier time getting laid than men is sexist - or at least wrapped up in sexist baggage.
posted by nadawi at 10:48 AM on June 9, 2013 [10 favorites]


I view the favorites as a form of "token economy" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Token_economy). It's a way of promoting popular behavior in my view. Because it works on conditioning and, in some sense, takes away human agency from personal decisions each person will say that it "doesn't work on them" much the same way people say that advertising has no effect. At least with advertising we know it exists because in the aggregate it generates billions of dollars in revenue.

These are just my opinions and are quite unprovable of course. I just don't like "favorites".
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 10:50 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


More info about flagging.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 10:50 AM on June 9, 2013


thank you
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 10:51 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I just don't like "favorites".

We gathered
posted by Greg Nog at 10:52 AM on June 9, 2013 [11 favorites]


I don't believe that what is true is subject to popularity

I don't think anyone here believes that. So I'm not sure why you're posting it.

I just don't like "favorites".


Then go ahead and don't like them. There's nothing wrong with that. But why keep telling us?
posted by Too-Ticky at 10:53 AM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


You've got company in not liking favorites. Though you might want to poke around for the mighty mighty meTa that occurred at the time of the Favorite Experiment. I am too lazy to look for it myself (and I should quite stalling and go get ready for brunch already because I'm getting wicked hungry.)
posted by rtha at 10:53 AM on June 9, 2013


the favorites conversation has been a huge one - you'll find lots of people that agree with you, i'm sure. it would maybe be a good idea to read through some of the threads linked up a ways to see how mods have responded to all the points you're bringing up. this is an issue that the site has dealt with a lot. you're welcome to your feelings on the matter - but this is a system with a lot of site specific history and isn't an easy conversation to shoehorn into a metatalk thread about civility.
posted by nadawi at 10:54 AM on June 9, 2013


and, in some sense, takes away human agency from personal decisions

I have no choice but to say, in the sense of "not at all."
posted by octobersurprise at 10:55 AM on June 9, 2013


The reason I did not think it was a derail

Look, man. The point is, the overwhelming majority of the participating userbase of the site, and significantly, all of the mods, are saying that it was. If you disagree with that, it's much more likely that you're wrong, not them.

This is a situation where you have to say to yourself, I must be missing something and try to learn. Maybe you won't get it today, or even for some time.

Situations like this are going to come up in life from time to time. It will serve you well to have a functioning mental "I believe" button, as we say in my business. This button allows you to act as if you assume something is true, even if you can't follow its proof. Like science fiction, you have to take some premises as given to make the story work.

It's not until much later you realize that it really was true and you were wrong, or that it's not true but is a useful fiction anyway, or maybe it still sticks in your craw and it's worth talking about again.

Please push the "I believe" button here. I promise you you'll get it after a while of MeFi-ing.
posted by ctmf at 10:55 AM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


I don't believe that what is true is subject to popularity nor do I think that even one person being rude is acceptable. The times I have been rude or not addressed someones position with the integrity of rhetoric are embarrassing to me and I hope that the same is true for other people. But often, even if I don't like a fact, if it can be proven then I must accept it.

This isn't borne out by how you've commented, either in other threads (i.e., robots.txt) or here. People have pointed out where you've been rude or not addressed positions this entire thread, and your responses have all been variations on "why isn't this how I want it to be" or "lookit what this guy who agrees with me said" or "stop disagreeing with me because it means you're basically calling me an idiot." At least at the beginning, when it looked like you might listen to reason, long-time members who have had difficulties with the site and/or other members were pouring their hearts to you and writing multi-paragraph descriptions of encouragement, and you've thrown that back in their faces because this is all apparently some sort of game with winners and losers, and if you can't win then no one should get to play.

As far as site mechanics go I feel I have learned a great deal, but not all of it conducive to discussion. I don't know how I feel about posting favorites next to comments so it is visible to all users for example. Even if some users here don't treat it as a scoreboard, it seems like posting numbers of "favorites" visible next to a comment is just a way to inspire popularity contests. If it was truly used as a bookmarking system there wouldn't need to be an ongoing tally.

You're still not getting it. This is the way things have been done for a while. It has been hashed out many times before and will no doubt be hashed out again in the future. Instead of doing tiniest amount of research on this, you air your grievances in this accusatory tone that implies that if you can't be popular and win an argument when everybody else wants a discussion, then the site owners and mods must be doing something wrong to you. You're not alone in having a low opinion on favorites, but your framing of the discussions as having winners and losers that personally affects you is not a good argument in favor of your position.

I am aware I can turn the visibility off, but the fact that the visibility is there for some users will mean that scoring points will be a motivation for users to post vitriol and arguments from emotion. I feel that this is counter productive to good discussion.

See, stuff like this is why people assume you're a young and immature person, because your viewpoint on this is so self-centered and revolving around addressing your personal issues regardless of anybody else's opinions or feelings that the most apt conclusion we can come to is that you're in the egotistical stage of adolescent development (even if it's something many people retain for most or all of their lives). You can't possibly get value or enjoyment out of the site unless everybody else gets the same value or enjoyment as you do, and you will always be paranoid that someone is enjoying something at your expense. This is just one of the many ways that you seem to approach the site that is itself not conducive to productive discussion.
posted by zombieflanders at 11:00 AM on June 9, 2013 [6 favorites]


view the favorites as a form of "token economy" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Token_economy). It's a way of promoting popular behavior in my view.

"Your view" just doesn't carry as much weight as you seem to think. You are being told, explicitly, by several of the people who use the favorites system, that it's used for several different reasons. And yet you're still insisting that your take on the subject is the only one worth considering. This response pattern has a lot of similarity to the behavior in the other thread that got you so much push back.

Seriously, what do you want from your experience here? There's tens of thousand users on the site, and you are never going to get majority support for the rhetorical positions you've taken, either on "robots.txt", sexual harassment, the female libido, the favorites system, or how much respect you merit. Maybe that's not what you're after, but I can't evaluate your efforts here as indicating any other goal.
posted by Ipsifendus at 11:01 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


There is nothing in your 'agency' that should let itself be influenced by favorites that others give to each other, while you can't see them because you've turned them off. Not to worry about what other people are saying/thinking/favoriting while one is looking the other way is a matter of relaxing one's mind. It works great, for any age group and any type of maturity. You'll be so much happier, I promise.
posted by Namlit at 11:02 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Which begs the question "often enough as compared to what?"

As compared to the 53.4% of women who masturbate once a month or more. Really, it's right there in the article linked in the OP. Did you even read it?

And then if you follow the link from the Gamification article to the HappyPlayTime website, there are plenty more charts analyzing & comparing women to each other & to their own feelings about masturbation. No evidence whatsoever that they are "using the frequency of male masturbation as a normative judgement against which to compare women."

We can have a long and fruitful discussion about all the different types of oranges without bringing apples into it.

You brought apples into the discussion - thus it was a derail, and your baseline assumptions of the "obvious" are what people are calling out as sexist. They are not calling you, personally, a sexist who will take any and all opportunities to be a pig; they are not claiming that you are saying sexist things from an intentional desire to hurt or belittle anyone. They are pointing out that your baseline assumptions are not necessarily 110% accurate.


Also, you may not like favorites, but I use 'em as both bookmarks and marks of support & agreement, and I like the intentionally vague nature of their meaning.
posted by soundguy99 at 11:03 AM on June 9, 2013 [9 favorites]


And just to give an example what "reading the room" could mean, I've been lurking here since 2004 and signed up in december 2008. I still got it wrong a fair number of times.
posted by Namlit at 11:03 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Sorry, restless_nomad! I did not realize how old that thread was. I still think it is absurd that some inflammatory derails stand while others go, though.

I have a note in my mailbox and now I am afraid. It's you chewing me out for flagging late, isn't it? Aww, geez. It's like going to the principal's office.
posted by misha at 11:04 AM on June 9, 2013


This shouldn't bother me so much... But I think I am extra sensitive to this because I've been watching ST:TOS lately (first time ever, for me!), and Spock seems to know what logic is about as well as a tribble knows what abstinence is. It has left me tetchy.

That said I don't treat his logic or defense of his position to any higher or lower standard than that I treat for every other poster here.

I don't see the word "logic" being used in this context in a useful way. There really is only one standard of logic--so, you're right about that. But the "standard of logic" is just validity: have some set of symbols been strung together in a way deemed technically appropriate given some particular set of rules? If yes, then it is valid. If no, it is invalid. That's all that logic gets you. The only time it's appropriate to dispute someone's logic is if they're stringing symbols together in an invalid way. And that, while noteworthy, isn't too big a deal. In any case where it is appropriate to question someone's logic, either you or they have made an easily-correctable and noticeable error. There's not really much of a debate if someone is appropriately following modus ponens, say, or is instead denying the antecedent. Whenever it is appropriate to dispute someone's logic, you can do so without engaging at all with the actual content of what they've said.

So, I don't think "logic" is the word you really want. Sure, it sounds really awesome to talk in terms of holding people to the "standard of logic." It makes it sound like one's quest is for nothing less bold and pure than INDISPUTABLE FACT and OBJECTIVE TRUTH. But if you really do mean that you're holding everyone to the standard of logic, then you've given yourself the very boring task of making sure no one denies an antecedent, affirms a consequent, etc. Since that's not at all what you've been doing in this thread or any of the other ones where I have seen you comment, it looks to me like you need to be more careful with how you express your conversational goals.

It's cool if you want to talk logic. A bunch of mefites know a lot about logic, and there have been plenty of occasions where logic has been a significant element of a thread. But I think this is another example of something you should really examine regarding your understanding of your participation here. When you say you're interested in holding thread participants to some standard of logic, what do you really mean? Because, again, your participation in Metafilter has proven it to be regarding something other than simple, boring logic.
posted by meese at 11:04 AM on June 9, 2013 [9 favorites]


I am biting my tongue about the use of 'begs the question,' but it is taking the full strength of my descriptivist convictions to do so.
posted by meese at 11:07 AM on June 9, 2013 [17 favorites]


misha - it's not absurd that in fast moving threads (that then spawned a ratking of a metatalk thread) that every single derail isn't nipped. sometimes mods clean out the cat box, sometimes the derail isn't as big of a bomb as early in the thread. there's lots of reasons not have an automatic standard for deletion that is exactly the same across the board.
posted by nadawi at 11:07 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


Moreover, the not fully explained and possibly ironic or negative use of otherwise positively connotated words such as "amusing" is something one often finds in writings of relatively younger people. At least I have found this, and I've seen quite a bunch of writings of young-ish people.
I'm hasting to say that this proves nothing, I know. But gut-feeling-triggering data points of this kind, both in terms of style and of argument conduct, abound in your contributions, which evidently brought some people to suggest that some learning may still be ahead for you.
Just an attempt to explain how that part may have come about...
posted by Namlit at 11:10 AM on June 9, 2013


If you would like to memail posts that you find offensive I can take another look or talk with you about it

There have been plenty already pointed out to you in this thread already. Not all but a huge amount to be going on with (and more in the other threads you've participated in if you open). If you can't be bothered reading all the insightful advice here I'm sure not going to go do a bunch of research on demand for you.

Even your wording here is a problem: "posts that you find offensive". It's not my opinion that's up for debate when you're espousing really tired, cliched, old, sexist tropes that we've all seen and discussed before on this site and which are written widely about elsewhere. It's boring at this point. If you want to educate yourself and stop coming across as a misogynist jerk and/or troll then there is plenty of information available both right here and with a little bit of digging into metatalk then out into the word at large. But I'm not going to spoonfeed you given your total lack of engagement with the advice you've been given so far.
posted by shelleycat at 11:16 AM on June 9, 2013 [18 favorites]


meese you're reading a stricter interpretation of my use of the word logic, or my use of the word was unclear or incorrect as compared to the standard.

I view any logical discussion and rhetoric as being a series of statements that follow from implication of known fact and are predictive of other known facts. "Fire hot" and "hot pain" are known facts while a logical argument to predict a future known fact would be "If I touch the hot fire I will be in pain". This can then be tested against the set of known reality (if we wanted to burn our hand). I am using the definition of logic and argument at it's most broad.

This is in stark contrast compared to the following;

"You make me angry so therefore you are wrong."

"Most people think you are wrong. Therefore you are wrong."

"You think you are right and do not agree with people who think you are wrong. You are therefore immature and young. You are therefore wrong."

"Your arguments are stupid. I will not say why but I will say they are stupid in a humorous way. Therefore I am right and you are wrong."
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 11:18 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


So you're... using a made-up version of logic and applying that to arguments that no one is actually presenting? That's really, really weird.
posted by palomar at 11:20 AM on June 9, 2013 [10 favorites]


As far as the posts under discussion are concerned they either deal in proven statements of fact

I'm a biomedical scientist. I've studied reproductive physiology and associated neurology to a postgraduate level (although I don't actively research in this area). You are flat out wrong here. Libido in all genders is not a straight forward yes/no problem, it absolutely is a social construct as much as a physiological one, it is actually very complex and not fully understood at any level, and you can keep calling your opinion a fact until you're blue in the face and you will still be wrong and bringing it up in that context in that way will still be sexist in the manner which has been pointed out to you repeatedly. Just to be really clear.
posted by shelleycat at 11:21 AM on June 9, 2013 [67 favorites]


shelleycat if you're not interested in talking, but rather just want to vent that is fine. But I contest that what I have written is factually sexist.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 11:23 AM on June 9, 2013


Leaving aside any scientific analysis of libido, you wrote that women have an easier time getting sex than men. That's pretty sexist.
posted by palomar at 11:25 AM on June 9, 2013 [7 favorites]


oh for Pete's sake
posted by Namlit at 11:25 AM on June 9, 2013


ISMJ, I suggest that you please take a step back and look at how you're engaging with the other users. This is not a good faith approach that you're taking. Perhaps you might consider lurking more until you have figured out the dynamics of the site.
posted by arcticseal at 11:26 AM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


But I contest that what I have written is factually sexist.

I'm going to be more blunt than I was before: nobody gives two shits what you contest. Until you give some indication that you're actually reading and understanding and absorbing the content of what people have said to you here, all your arguments are so much noise.
posted by Ipsifendus at 11:27 AM on June 9, 2013 [6 favorites]


we have a pretty open sexual culture (not everywhere, but as a comparison to a "1950s mindset")

Yeah, you really don't know what you're talking about.

From a statement of feminism, my position was that they had internalized a standard of conduct as compared to men and were therefore not feminist enough!

Not yours to determine.

"You make me angry so therefore you are wrong."

Please notice that is exactly the stance you are taking in this thread.
posted by Miko at 11:28 AM on June 9, 2013 [9 favorites]


shelleycat if you're not interested in talking, but rather just want to vent that is fine. But I contest that what I have written is factually sexist.

The only thing that would make this response to a measured, matter-of-fact comment even more condescending is if you had actually accused shellycat of being hysterical and to unbunch her panties.
posted by zombieflanders at 11:31 AM on June 9, 2013 [46 favorites]


I contest that what I have written is factually sexist.

Also, I agree about the presumptuousness of youth here. Do you really think we haven't had this discussion? Do you really think people have never encountered this old canard before? Do you really imagine a site like this can have been going for 10+ years without, at many points, breaking this down to see the crap it is?

I assure you, we have dealt with your "contestation" multiple times in the past, and if we don't want to pick the fight with you, it's because it really seems like a waste of time and effort, not because you have developed such singular, brilliant insights about the "obvious" nature of reality. Maybe the way you should spend your time adapting to MeFi culture would be to go back and read some past threads on gender issues, so you can at least bring yourself up to the level of discourse we're more used to.
posted by Miko at 11:31 AM on June 9, 2013 [15 favorites]


Also, "factually sexist?" I'd love to know what the definition of that is supposed to be.
posted by Miko at 11:32 AM on June 9, 2013 [6 favorites]


shelleycat I'm afraid that it is a fact that men on average have a higher sex drive than women. It's not a point of sexism its just true. This is not indicative of a judgement on whether this is good or bad it just is.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexual_desire#Sex_differences_in_sexual_desire

Men, on average, have significantly higher sex drives and desire for sexual activity than women do; this also correlated with the finding that men, on average, have a larger total number of lifetime sexual partners.

And the sources that lamdaphage pointed out.

It won't matter how many times you say I'm wrong or how many people here do either unless you can come up with a scientific study on the basis of known fact to contest the overwhelming evidence to the contrary.



Leaving aside any scientific analysis of libido, you wrote that women have an easier time getting sex than men. That's pretty sexist.
posted by palomar at 11:25 AM on June 9 [1 favorite +] [!]


Not at all. If men have higher libidos than women then they would desire sex with greater frequency than women. It seems a straightforward logical step from the above known fact that a woman would have an easier time convincing a man to engage in intercourse than the reverse. I could not find a source to back this up, which I mentioned in the original thread, but anecdotally I believe it to be the case. Not sexist in the least.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 11:35 AM on June 9, 2013


I contest that what I have written is factually sexist.

I contend that you don't know that contest is a synonym, not an antonym, of contend.
posted by ambrosen at 11:35 AM on June 9, 2013 [19 favorites]


shelleycat I'm afraid that it is a fact that men on average have a higher sex drive than women.

All that aside, take a deep breath and notice that despite how much you are in love with this idea, what she called sexist is not this but actually your assertion that women have an easier time "getting sex" than men.
posted by Miko at 11:36 AM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


Ok, we are actually not going to debate which sex has higher libido. This is the area of the site to discuss meta-issues, issues about site participation.

ismj, the dynamic I see at play in your commenting is this:

You come into a thread about a topic and make a comment that's all three of these:
1. a contentious claim (i.e., factually dubious or even false), and
2. a cliche of (for example) sexist arguments, which makes it sound as if you're trying to invoke other arguments that have a lot of baggage, and
3. seemingly irrelevant, or only tangentially connected, to the topic at hand.

People object to your claim and you dig in.

This is a bad way to participate. I think people are saying you seem young because you don't recognize 2 and 3, and when challenged you dig in defending 1.

It is okay not to know which things are cliches -- if you're not familiar with the many-years-long history of eg debate over sexual harassment, it's understandable that you don't know that you're trotting out a very old trope. And it's okay to not realize, when you make your comment, that its relevance will be obscure to readers. But in both cases, once you get pushback, it's time to reassess, clarify your intent, try to understand other people's objections, etc. That is my suggestion for how to change your behavior going forward.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 11:37 AM on June 9, 2013 [17 favorites]


Holy hopping Christ ISMJ, learn when to stop digging.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 11:37 AM on June 9, 2013 [7 favorites]


WIKIPEDIA AGAIN WELL THAT SETTLES IT
posted by Miko at 11:37 AM on June 9, 2013 [19 favorites]


shelleycat I'm afraid

no you're not
posted by Namlit at 11:37 AM on June 9, 2013


Is there a pool going for how many times a mod will have to tell us to quit having the derail discussion here, and that that is not what meTa is for? I want in if so.
posted by rtha at 11:37 AM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans:

Earlier in this thread I raised an unpopular point-- that the set of issues surrounding your original OP had been derailed. Since then many people have tried to explain the policy issues that relate to your post but you seem interested only in debating your beliefs about women’s sexuality.

I think that the community vibe here can be a bit stifling at times and I have said that in past threads. But people with outsider views also have a responsibility to understand the community’s norms. Here is my attempt to grab your attention and engage you with what virtually everyone in this thread has agreed is necessary for participation in Metafilter.

1) Your concerns have a history larger than you. See how the topics of favorites, sex and gender, flagging and so on have played out over the years by using the archives.

2) The mods have repeatedly linked you to threads on these issues. Go back through the thread and read those linked threads. This will take a lot of time to do carefully.

3) Metatalk is not a place to get a second hearing on your beliefs.

4) There are a lot of very smart people here. The concentration of smart people here is higher than any other forum I can think of. It takes a bit of getting used to. You will never be the smartest guy in the room.

These are just my off-the-cuff opinions and are no way authoritative.
posted by vincele at 11:38 AM on June 9, 2013 [10 favorites]


Is there a pool going for how many times a mod will have to tell us to quit having the derail discussion here

I'm guilty and will try to stop. The baiting is truly extraordinary, though.
posted by Miko at 11:38 AM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


I wonder if that's more of his special brand of not-logic logic. Heh. Keep it up, dude. I think it's clear that your time here will not be of a terribly long duration.
posted by palomar at 11:39 AM on June 9, 2013


I want in if so.

It would be the one thing that is winnable in this thread, that's for certain.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 11:39 AM on June 9, 2013 [25 favorites]


It won't matter how many times you say I'm wrong or how many people here do either unless you can come up with a scientific study on the basis of known fact to contest the overwhelming evidence to the contrary[...]I could not find a source to back this up, which I mentioned in the original thread, but anecdotally I believe it to be the case.

Do you even read what you write before you post it?
posted by zombieflanders at 11:39 AM on June 9, 2013 [14 favorites]


No. His vent is broken.
posted by Namlit at 11:41 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I view any logical discussion and rhetoric as being a series of statements that follow from implication of known fact and are predictive of other known facts. "Fire hot" and "hot pain" are known facts while a logical argument to predict a future known fact would be "If I touch the hot fire I will be in pain". This can then be tested against the set of known reality (if we wanted to burn our hand). I am using the definition of logic and argument at it's most broad.

And what people have been pointing out to you, is that you you seem to have some very strong ideas and assertions about what are "know facts", and that these often feel to everyone else like, "personal opinions", and in other cases (the robots.txt is a good example) just ignore actual known facts brought up by others because you do not already know them.

I don't think you are being illogical, but i think you are being logical inside the framework of a limited worldview, the issue seems to be pretty much the way you engage with information outside of the "known facts" you already have.
posted by St. Sorryass at 11:41 AM on June 9, 2013


Talking about beer... (hopeful silence)
posted by Namlit at 11:42 AM on June 9, 2013


The baiting is truly extraordinary, though.

Yes, at this point it's clear we've transitioned from unintentional to deliberate provocation.
posted by ook at 11:42 AM on June 9, 2013 [7 favorites]


everyone else has essentially added him to some kind of Wall of Infamy

This is pretty small stuff by Wall Of Infamy standards. No, at the best what has been achieved here is "That Guy" status.

When you see a wall of text and glance at the username to see if its worth reading? If its That Guy you move along.

If someone makes a frustrating or antagonistic comment that needs a response? Flag it or forget it, it's not worth your time with That Guy.

That Guy usually doesn't hang around very long, at least if they keep on insisting on being That Guy.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 11:42 AM on June 9, 2013 [6 favorites]


Also check the meaning of "rhetoric". Wikipedia is a great place to begin.
posted by Namlit at 11:43 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm also going to be blunt. ISMJ, I think your participation in the McGinn thread was sexist logic chopping of the worst kind, and to my chagrin I feel like I basically got trolled by it in that thread. The veneration of "logic"* is not the be all and end all of argumentation / discussion, and you would do well to learn this earlier rather than later.

* (I'd additionally recommend reading a bit about informal logic to get a sense for the scope of what you probably mean by "logic"; this extends well beyond just a notion of logical consequence. This subsection may be helpful. This may give you some framework for what you're missing here: you may have some notions corresponding to 3 and 5, but you're clearly missing most of the rest, especially 1, 2, and 9.)
posted by advil at 11:43 AM on June 9, 2013 [9 favorites]


I think vincele's list is spot on.
posted by soundguy99 at 11:43 AM on June 9, 2013


So matthowie doesn't know more about how his site works than you do, and a biomedical scientist doesn't know more about female libido than you do? Really now?

In my peer group, you're the kind of person we'd tell to go teach his father how to fuck.
posted by Too-Ticky at 11:43 AM on June 9, 2013 [17 favorites]


The baiting is truly extraordinary, though.

Master baiting, even.
posted by octobersurprise at 11:44 AM on June 9, 2013 [26 favorites]


I disagreed with posters calling "troll" upthread but I now believe I was wrong.
posted by headnsouth at 11:44 AM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


I could not find a source to back this up, which I mentioned in the original thread, but anecdotally I believe it to be the case.

Good enough! After all, shellycat is merely a woman who has been professionally trained in biomedical science. You are a man with wikipedia and anecdotes.
posted by scody at 11:46 AM on June 9, 2013 [84 favorites]


Ok, I'm not one to call Troll right away, but come on now.

A "logical" person just doesn't call mathowie wrong (or possibly just confused) about how MetaFilter works. Then go on to contest shelleycat's opinion without any credentials in this field. Or tell a very large number of web professionals how robots.txt works, then back off to how the way it works is stupid when it becomes clear you don't actually know how it works.

Fucking hell, ishrinkmajeans. I'm starting to think you'd pick a fight with Michael Jordan about how basketball should be played.

Sure, nobody is right every time, and there are cases where the experts are mistaken. YOU are probably not going to be the one that makes them all scratch their chin and say WOW! I NEVER THOUGHT OF THAT!

Which I'm now starting to suspect you know damn well, and just like the attention.
posted by ctmf at 11:46 AM on June 9, 2013 [8 favorites]


I think it should be abundantly clear by now that ishrinkmajeans has a better grasp on how things work around here - at least in terms of how to masterfully push buttons and elicit responses - than the users who continue to engage him in good faith. Forget about favorites. The real gamification seems to be about the ratio of exasperated responses per comment.
posted by Anoplura at 11:47 AM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


In my peer group, you're the kind of person we'd tell to go teach his father how to fuck.

I have no idea what you guys expect to get out of this thread at this point.

If it it's more beer talk, I just want to point out that La Fin Du Monde is the best beer in the world.
posted by Drinky Die at 11:49 AM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


I have no idea what you guys expect to get out of this thread at this point.

Wait, we're supposed to have expectations?
posted by Too-Ticky at 11:50 AM on June 9, 2013


I just want to point out that La Fin Du Monde is the best beer in the world.

Anecdotally, no. Full stop. And I'm a man.
posted by Anoplura at 11:51 AM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


What vincele says:

4) There are a lot of very smart people here. The concentration of smart people here is higher than any other forum I can think of. It takes a bit of getting used to. You will never be the smartest guy in the room.

Yes. Very, very much. I'm still getting used to reading comments that are much clearer, smarter, intelligent, wittier, and better referenced than anything I can write. Comments by many people on here.

It doesn't matter what your previous discussion experience is, even if you were previously a big fish in a small pond. On MetaFilter, you're a small fish in a very big pond (of cleverer fish). From the perspective of reading, contemplation, understanding and learning, that can only be a good thing.

Back to tea; as the sun sinks towards the western horizon, it's a freshly-made pot of camomile for a relaxing early evening reading of more comments. That's all I've got.
posted by Wordshore at 11:53 AM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


I like La Fin Du Mond, but I'd choose an Ommegang Three Philosophers or an Allagash Curieux over it any day.
posted by octobersurprise at 11:55 AM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


Oh, could be a good point for anecdotes. Beer can wait. Nice and cool.

We once had a visitor (some or other ravelry acquaintance who happened to be in the area), who knew everything about anything. Conversation was largely one-way.
Then, somehow it transpired that I'd published a book about piano performance in the classical style and that was the rest of the evening: her lecturing me about the classical style.

I mean it does happen, that type of thing, like, IRL.
posted by Namlit at 11:55 AM on June 9, 2013 [8 favorites]


We'll have some really nice Chianti later. So there. The sun won't sink for a while. It's June in Sweden...
posted by Namlit at 11:57 AM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Wait, we're supposed to have expectations?

Yeah, hopefully to learn about and improve the experience of using the site. Jeans still holds disagreements but I doubt either side is going to get any more persuasive than they did in the first 700 comments.

Yuengling is my second favorite beer, but that's just personal taste and nostalgia and deliciousness.
posted by Drinky Die at 11:59 AM on June 9, 2013


Has there ever been any talk about a MeFi beer swap? The mentions of La Fin du Monde and Three Philosophers reminds me that Hair of the Dog (my favorite brewer of strong, sweet beers) is only available in a few US states. Anyone up for a quasi-legal, cross-country, regional specialty beer trade?

Something productive should come out of this thread...
posted by Anoplura at 12:01 PM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans: "It seems a straightforward logical step from the above known fact that a woman would have an easier time convincing a man to engage in intercourse than the reverse."

If you cannot at least acknowledge this is heteronormative (you seem an expert at Wikipedia so look that up) then I think you really are trolling.

Heteronormativity is deeply intertwined with sexism (and homophobia) so it's a "straightforward logical step" to the claims of sexism.
posted by secretseasons at 12:01 PM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


When you see a wall of text and glance at the username to see if its worth reading? If its That Guy you move along.

I would amend or add to this slightly to say that if you read the first sentence or two of a comment and know who wrote it before you get to the username...
posted by rtha at 12:03 PM on June 9, 2013 [10 favorites]


ishrinkmyjeans- you're becoming the person at the party that everyone wants to avoid.



La Fin Du Monde is a fine beer, but it's no Westmalle Tripel.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 12:04 PM on June 9, 2013


I just want to point out that La Fin Du Monde is the best beer in the world.

Look at you. Look at how wrong you are.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:05 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Oh, btw- for a good new beer out of Belgium? De Dolle Arabier. Spectacular.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 12:05 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm always one to warn against assuming ulterior motivations in other users, but after following this for *days*, I'd just like to paraphrase Clarke:

A sufficiently stubborn iconoclast is indistinguishable from a troll.
posted by absalom at 12:05 PM on June 9, 2013 [8 favorites]


I'm leaning towards the sufficiently stubborn iconoclast conclusion myself.
posted by ambrosen at 12:08 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Is there a name for the logical fallacy of "I don't need to cite shit; this is OBVIOUS on its face"?
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:10 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Jeansian.
posted by arcticseal at 12:12 PM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


Actually, Ishrinkmajeans, you are absolutely right.

This is the worst place to seek popularity. Especially the grey sections of the website, called MetaTalk.

Or even validation.


Pity the interest rates are so low, that 3 weeks on the $5 won't get you much of an ROI on withdrawal.
posted by infini at 12:14 PM on June 9, 2013


Predicition: eventual "I started out serious, but then I decided to just see how long I could keep spinning everyone up haha" comment. It's really the only thing you can do once you've dug the hole this deep.

I presume the banhammer button is already open in another window, cursor hovering.
posted by ctmf at 12:15 PM on June 9, 2013


Just another PSA for folks about flagging:

Flagging comments in a MetaTalk thread is typically not very useful. Mods are already reading, so we have already seen whatever comment you're flagging.

Also - newer users may not be aware of this, but the different sub-sites of MetaFilter have different moderation standards. AskMe is strictly a stay-on-topic, answer-the-question, no-wisecracks, kind of place; the blue is more lax although generally we ask people to stay on topic and not to engage in metadiscussion there; and MeTa has the least moderation, and is the place where people can engage in metadiscussion. Comments are rarely (tho sometimes) deleted from MetaTalk... so comments remain in MetaTalk that would not remain on the blue.

(It is still okay to flag of course, but just trying to set people's expectation appropriately about the likely outcome of their flagging.)
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 12:16 PM on June 9, 2013


It's June in Sweden...

I'm going to go out on a limb and say it's June everywhere.
posted by asterix at 12:16 PM on June 9, 2013 [18 favorites]


I presume the banhammer button is already open in another window, cursor hovering.

I think it actually takes a lot to get banned around here, and I don't think ISMJ has really reached that point, despite what we've seen here. That's not to say his participation has been stellar or anything, and that continued antics like this won't probably end badly.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:18 PM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


"I think it should be abundantly clear by now that ishrinkmajeans has a better grasp on how things work around here - at least in terms of how to masterfully push buttons and elicit responses - than the users who continue to engage him in good faith."

I honestly don't understand why so many people find this conclusion as likely as they do in so many cases. I'm genuinely puzzled by this. I've known many, many people who have behaved as ishrinkmajeans has behaved in this thread and who have done so in complete earnestness.

In my experience, this personality combination is very common, while the actual troll is relatively quite rare. It seems far more likely to me that ishrinkmajeans is not a troll, but rather earnest-but-infuriating.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 12:18 PM on June 9, 2013 [33 favorites]


but more so in Sweden. I am right. I could quote.
posted by Namlit at 12:19 PM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


I'll tell you what, it's not June where I am, and I don't care who says otherwise.





Oh, who am I kidding. It's gorgeous out. It's June.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 12:21 PM on June 9, 2013


People who troll don't generally admit they are as angry or angrier about how the conversation is going than the people they are trolling.
posted by Drinky Die at 12:21 PM on June 9, 2013


I think I stumbled over the flag button when I made an attempt to leave.
posted by Namlit at 12:21 PM on June 9, 2013


It felt somehow soothing.
posted by Namlit at 12:22 PM on June 9, 2013


That's true. I think it's to the point, though, where that account is not going to be taken seriously on this site ever again. So it's either flame it out gloriously, or let it go inactive and Brand New Day with a different user name.

Of course, not everyone even reads MeTa, so maybe it's not that bad.
posted by ctmf at 12:23 PM on June 9, 2013


asterix: "I'm going to go out on a limb and say it's June everywhere."

It's not June in Afghanistan or Iran because the Solar Hijri calendar doesn't have June (or any other Gregorian months for that matter).
posted by Mitheral at 12:26 PM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


If it's any consolation to those who are frustrated with me I feel equally frustrated. I don't like being unpopular for its own sake, I just think its intellectually dishonest to change arguments based on popularity or appeals to authority.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 12:28 PM on June 9, 2013


No, it's better to change arguments based on appeals to Wikipedia.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 12:30 PM on June 9, 2013 [13 favorites]


Now I'm actually wondering ...

Ishrinkmajeans, where are you from? Is English your native language? Have you been online much before in the past?
posted by infini at 12:30 PM on June 9, 2013


CWAA. Done.
posted by ctmf at 12:31 PM on June 9, 2013


(That WAS name-calling.)
posted by ctmf at 12:31 PM on June 9, 2013


I just think its intellectually dishonest to change arguments based on popularity or appeals to authority.

You do know there's a difference between "appeals to authority" and "I actually study this for a living" yeah?

At this point I honestly think your best bet would be to walk away from this thread, and try and really take to heart at least a couple of the literally hundreds of earnest and valid criticisms proffered to you.

Among them, I'd start by remembering that what's "totally obvious" to you isn't obvious to everyone, that when you make extraordinary claims you need to cite, and that if your motivation for involving yourself in a discussion is to "win", you will invariably lose. And lurk more. Like, a lot, lot more.

Probably a waste of time even suggesting all this, but people can change, so there you have it.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:33 PM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


I think it is fair to say, ishrinkmajeans, that you have an incomplete understanding of Metafilter's site culture. I also think that learning more about how things work around here would help you make a more informed decision about whether this is a place you want to be. You might consider whether this learning process is most effectively conducted so publicly, and you might also consider how this public learning process might affect other site members' perceptions of you in the long term.
posted by box at 12:39 PM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


Now I'm actually wondering ...

Ishrinkmajeans, where are you from? Is English your native language? Have you been online much before in the past?
posted by infini at 12:30 PM on June 9 [+] [!]


This seems less an honest request for information than a thinly veiled insinuation. It's poor form and I don't appreciate it.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 12:40 PM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


The baiting is truly extraordinary, though.

This guy could make Gandhi punch a kitten.
posted by Pudhoho at 12:41 PM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


That does it- all this talk of beer has made me thirsty. I'm off to Bellwoods Brewery. If anyone wishes to join me, I'll be the skull sitting by the bar.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 12:42 PM on June 9, 2013


It can't be an 'Appeal to Authority' fallacy if the voice actually is the authority?

From your favorite cite source:
Although certain classes of argument from authority can constitute strong inductive arguments, the appeal to authority is often applied fallaciously.

Fallacious examples of using the appeal include:

cases where the authority is not a subject-matter expert
cases where there is no consensus among experts in the subject matter
any appeal to authority used in the context of deductive reasoning.


Mathowie is, in fact, a subject-matter expert on the workings of Metafilter.
There is a consensus here among the mods (subject-matter experts) on your interactions here.
Lastly, claiming this fallacy as a means to deduce your right-ness is, in itself, fallacious.
posted by ApathyGirl at 12:42 PM on June 9, 2013 [8 favorites]


ISMJ, you seem to be ignoring the helpful advice given you in this thread and choosing to focus on the few comments that agree with you or the odd snark. That is really poor form.
posted by arcticseal at 12:43 PM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans, maybe I missed it but I don't think you ever responded to my question here. Since you're back participating in the thread would you mind answering it?
posted by Unified Theory at 12:47 PM on June 9, 2013


I just think its intellectually dishonest to change arguments based on popularity or appeals to authority.

Well, hey, now you know what it's like trying to have a discussion with someone who's spent the last two days telling people about "settled" science and keeps on telling people--including biomedical scientists--that your anecdotal evidence is a valid primary source, and to go read Wikipedia as if it was the ultimate authority.

Again, perhaps you should start quoting the many comments with good advice and show that you're taking them to heart.
posted by zombieflanders at 12:47 PM on June 9, 2013


ISMJ, you seem to be ignoring the helpful advice given you in this thread and choosing to focus on the few comments that agree with you or the odd snark. That is really poor form.

That seems to be his thing, though, and I don't think all the well-intentioned advice in the world is going to change that. Sometimes you gotta accept that the horse is already dead.

Now, how about we all give up and go and have a nice wank?
posted by billiebee at 12:50 PM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


The constant accusations of being insulted by "thinly veiled insinuations" is actually getting kind of hilarious.
posted by palomar at 12:52 PM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


Yeah, especially when someone just came right out and called him an asshole directly.
posted by Drinky Die at 12:54 PM on June 9, 2013


Would love to, but I'm waiting for ISMJ to tell me how much I'm supposed to masturbate based on libido standards for my gender.
posted by chrchr at 12:54 PM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


Unified theory

To your question yes

1 I read into the article that the professor was pressured to resign. It seemed the admins gave him the option of a quiet exit before they decided to fire him which he took.

2 I question whether adding a ten minute sex scene in a movie added to its narrative content. I don't think the whole film was porn but I think the sex scene might be though I haven't seen it. I don't think that all art house movies are boring but they do often follow tropes that are irritating and degrade the quality of their films. Adding gratuitous sex scenes to make your film edgy is something I have seen in previous art house films and I think it's kind of boring yes.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 12:58 PM on June 9, 2013


Yeah, especially when someone just came right out and called him an asshole directly.

I just Ctrl + F'd "asshole" but I must have missed someone straight-up calling him an asshole.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 12:59 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


At this point I honestly think your best bet would be to walk away from this thread, and try and really take to heart at least a couple of the literally hundreds of earnest and valid criticisms proffered to you.

I agree.

ismj: One thing I noticed in looking at your posting history on the blue is that you have made a number of very good (and, fwiw, often heavily favorited) comments about the privilege of the socioeconomic ruling class, and how in their privilege they don't really have any idea of the realities of living as part of what you rightly call the reserve army of labor. And yet, it's part of the very privilege of the ruling class that allows them to bloviate in so many ways that they know BEST about all the socioeconomic options, needs, and lived experiences of those of us who are not so privileged ("bourgeois claptrap," as you put it in one comment).

It strikes me that the way you keep insisting you know more about women and women's sexuality than anyone else in the thread bears striking parallels to the way the ruling class insists that they know best about how the rest of society should function. That is to say, your privilege both allows you to assume that you would naturally know more and blinds you to how very much you truly, factually don't know. So rather than purveying bourgeois claptrap, you are purveying sexist claptrap.

So it seems to me you have a choice. You can keep doubling down on sexist claptrap, just like the ruling class doubles down on its own self-aggrandizing claptrap. Or you can humbly reconsider that you do not know everything you think you know about women, women's sexuality, and women's experiences under capitalism, and start thinking more rigorously and thoughtfully about the points that have been brought up here.
posted by scody at 12:59 PM on June 9, 2013 [50 favorites]


Thanks for your answer.
posted by Unified Theory at 1:00 PM on June 9, 2013


Yeah, especially when someone just came right out and called him an asshole directly.

Yeah, what MSTPT said -- I Ctrl-F'ed through the thread and could see no comment close to what you're describing. Can you point it out?
posted by palomar at 1:00 PM on June 9, 2013


I just Ctrl + F'd "asshole" but I must have missed someone straight-up calling him an asshole.


CWAA. Done.
posted by ctmf at 3:31 PM on June 9 [+] [!]


(That WAS name-calling.)
posted by ctmf at 3:31 PM on June 9 [+] [!]


CWAA=Christ what an asshole, unless I way misread that.
posted by Drinky Die at 1:00 PM on June 9, 2013


Ishrinkmajeans, I need to repeat that this is not the thread to rehash arguments on topics in other threads.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 1:00 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


MetaTalk: It's poor form and I don't appreciate it.

I was serious, ISMJ, that's my usual shtick when somebody's behaviour just doesn't make sense anymore. To see if there was a cultural problem or a language issue, to take into consideration. Also, you reminded me of some Finns I once knew.

Instead, now I'll start wondering about brain chemistry instead...
posted by infini at 1:01 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Beer is too weak. Laphroig Green Cask. Three cubes of ice please.

And sometimes, everyone not only doesn't need a hug but they'll shove you away screaming fear in your face.
posted by infini at 1:01 PM on June 9, 2013


I've developed this weird little trick that has been surprisingly effective in helping me avoid things/people/places/habits that are tempting but bad for me. I just decide (repeating to myself as necessary) that "[that thing] is Not For Me." Not bad, not good, just Not For Me. I basically just try to mentally reclassify those things as if I were hungry in a pet store -- sure, I'm hungry, and those cans may say "food" on them, but I don't have to wrestle mentally about whether to eat them because they are Not For Me.

I'm just thinking, and I mean this with kindness, that maybe contributing to metafilter is just Not For You right now, ishrinkmajeans.
posted by argonauta at 1:01 PM on June 9, 2013 [6 favorites]


I don't think the whole film was porn but I think the sex scene might be though I haven't seen it.

well, then, for all you know it might have been a study in comparative libido
posted by pyramid termite at 1:01 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


CWAA=Christ what an asshole, unless I way misread that.

Seriously? I mean, I guess, sure. He is been repressed.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 1:02 PM on June 9, 2013


I basically just try to mentally reclassify those things as if I were hungry in a pet store

I am glad that you went on to mention cans of food, because gah.
posted by palomar at 1:03 PM on June 9, 2013 [9 favorites]


Ishrinkmajeans, I need to repeat that this is not the thread to rehash arguments on topics in other threads.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 1:00 PM


I believe I had the $20 on 1300 hours, yes?
posted by infini at 1:04 PM on June 9, 2013


CWAA=Christ what an asshole, unless I way misread that.

Ah. I guess I missed that because I was looking for a comment that actually used the word asshole, not an acronym I didn't understand. My bad.
posted by palomar at 1:04 PM on June 9, 2013


I've been lurking all this time, but it just occurred to me that my username (in one sense) has great relevance for this discussion.

Ahem.
posted by ipsative at 1:04 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Seriously? I mean, I guess, sure. He is been repressed.

I said he was called an asshole, not repressed. He's had every opportunity to state his case here.

Ah. I guess I missed that because I was looking for a comment that actually used the word asshole, not an acronym I didn't understand. My bad.

Heh, I googled it and was trying to figure out how Central Wisconsin Apartment Association was namecalling before I figured it out.
posted by Drinky Die at 1:06 PM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


Have you tried renting in central Wisconsin? I thought CWAA was really below the belt until you pointed out it just meant Christ, What An Asshole.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 1:07 PM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


I read that as See, Waaaaah!
posted by infini at 1:08 PM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


ISMJ is basically trying to get us to call him names so that he can be RIGHTS on the INTRWEBS that his MeTa post title was FACTUALLY correct.
posted by infini at 1:09 PM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


shelleycat I'm afraid that it is a fact that men on average have a higher sex drive than women. It's not a point of sexism its just true. This is not indicative of a judgement on whether this is good or bad it just is.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexual_desire#Sex_differences_in_sexual_desire


Okay, you are just fucking with us now. Right?
posted by jokeefe at 1:10 PM on June 9, 2013 [6 favorites]


I stopped trusting Wikipedia as a source for anything after the time I looked up Chester A. Arthur and his Wikipedia entry said he was an aboriginal beard priest.

Just saying.
posted by palomar at 1:13 PM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


Somehow I think this would go better if people passed on opportunities to poke ismj with a stick.
posted by MoonOrb at 1:13 PM on June 9, 2013 [7 favorites]


i stopped trusting wikipedia as a source when it said that lincoln defeated douglas in the debates by a babality
posted by pyramid termite at 1:18 PM on June 9, 2013


Okay, you are just fucking with us now. Right?

Now?
posted by edgeways at 1:20 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


if you're not interested in talking, but rather just want to vent that is fine.

This is the sentence where ISMJ officially crossed the line from "maybe a troll" to "almost certainly a troll". He appears to me to be making a Grand Performance and skillfully Pushing Buttons in ways that someone who was honestly 'just clueless' would be incapable.

There are a number of things that make MetaFilter 'special' - special enough to have made me stick around since the beginning (under this identity and as 'wendell', user #206 and a pen name I sadly quit using a few years ago) and why it is the largest site on the Web where I read Comment Threads. (for example, Reddit is not so much of a 'free-for-all' as it's just a collection of wide-ranging topic-based echo chambers)

I consider the moderation here the best anywhere, even though I disagree with almost 25% of the 'controversial' decisions they make. (And the decision to NOT give ISMJ a timeout and close the thread is becoming one of them)

And the community includes some great personalities, some very wise (like scody and Miko and moderator jessamyn) and others achieving a rare "positive smartassery" I've attempted myself to limited success (like TheWhelk and It's Raining Florence Henderson and moderator cortex). Interesting how the first category has become more and more dominated by the female of the species, but that's just how the site has evolved to a higher quality (and I, probably less so, have).

I genuinely appreciate the fact that in 825 comments, I have not seen anyone use the most obviously insulting variations on his silly username (which since I am now assessing him as a troll, I now suspect were an intentional part of his choice of username). Or maybe the mods deleted those comments so I won't say more.
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:21 PM on June 9, 2013 [6 favorites]


i stopped trusting wikipedia as a source when it said that lincoln defeated douglas in the debates by a babality

Are we sure that's not what happened?
posted by zombieflanders at 1:22 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


(And the decision to NOT give ISMJ a timeout and close the thread is becoming one of them)

Agreed. At this point, it's obvious that ISMJ isn't listening, and all that's happening is a waste of energy and goodwill. I'd be happy to see this closed up.
posted by jokeefe at 1:25 PM on June 9, 2013


Leaving these threads open indefinitely so the people who are having a hard time adapting to MeFi culture and the people who think they're trolls who should be encouraged to flame out can keep going at it in a loop of recrimination that never approaches anything close to a positive outcome seems less than ideal.
posted by prize bull octorok at 1:25 PM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


You can say what you want about Wikipedia generally but pretty much every sentence in the sexuality article I linked to is referenced to peer reviewed scholarly articles. Just saying "lolwikipedia" without bothering to read the article is not very good.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 1:26 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I read CWAA as Comes With An Attitude and thought it apt.
posted by arcticseal at 1:28 PM on June 9, 2013


Pulls thread loose to let the whole sweater unravel.
posted by infini at 1:28 PM on June 9, 2013


hmm, maybe the article just wasn't all that interesting in the context of the discussion

hey, maybe you're not all that interesting yourself

bye
posted by pyramid termite at 1:28 PM on June 9, 2013


Oh dear god just stop.

That is directed, I believe, at myself. I'm going to the gym and then I'm having dinner with my elderly mother, who has made a strawberry and rhubarb pie for the occasion. And then the GoT finale! So why am I messing with this day any further? I wish you the best, ISMJ, and I hope you can take some time to consider all the thoughtful responses you have had here. If you were just planning on winding the whole site up, then well done. So long.
posted by jokeefe at 1:28 PM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


Oh, I read the article you linked. I even read the abstract of the study regarding sex drives. It's a lot more than just "men have higher sex drives than women". Maybe you ought to read it, dude. And then do some research on sociosexual orientation and gender identity, so that you understand what you're reading instead of thinking that it supports your theory.
posted by palomar at 1:30 PM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


STOP FEEDING IT!
posted by erebora at 1:30 PM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


And since the earlier attempts to do the MeFi-traditional 'end-of-thread cooldown' trivial/non-sequitur comments have been unsuccessful, may I recommend moving discussion of tea/pie/beer to the Alphabethread, which is still 2000 comments away from the all-site record (and loads very slowly). And the existence of something like the Alphabethread is one of the things I love most about this place.

Of course, if we do leave this open and the Alphabethread fails to break the record, we could always make another record attempt here. (That should scare the mods into action, bwahaha.)
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:30 PM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


I still don't believe that ishrinkmajeans is an actual troll, but his repeated attempts to defend the libido assertions in this thread is functionally trolling.

It's incredibly bad-form given that many of us could and would respond if we just blew-off, as ishrinkmajeans has, the mods' repeated cautions against having that argument here. I mean, seriously, at this point I think the guy should be given a time-out if he does it again. It's really pissing me off that he keeps bringing it up.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 1:35 PM on June 9, 2013 [9 favorites]


Can you edit comments in a thread that's been closed?
posted by Mitheral at 1:36 PM on June 9, 2013


there once was a female mosquito
who had a tiny libido
try as she might
she just couldn't bite
so evolution gave her a veto
posted by pyramid termite at 1:36 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


You can say what you want about Wikipedia generally but pretty much every sentence in the sexuality article I linked to is referenced to peer reviewed scholarly articles.

One thing that may not be obvious is that peer-reviewed scholarly articles get very nearly as much skepticism here as Wikipedia does. Their existence proves nothing; their abstracts do very little else. Referencing them without actually reading and analyzing them is so much handwaving.

The other thing that may not be super clear here is that we do not moderate for correctness. This may be why we don't seem to be communicating on the "don't have that argument here" front. I do not care in the least if your argument is correct. It won't affect my decisions as a moderator at all. I care if it's relevant, appropriate, and likely to send the thread spinning into the abyss. So if you keep coming back to that point in an attempt to argue the deletion, you can let that go, because it's not relevant.

And if you keep coming back to it for other reasons, stop. I'd like to not have to close this thread by fiat, but we're approaching ko here.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 1:37 PM on June 9, 2013 [15 favorites]


Now I'm actually wondering ...

Ishrinkmajeans, where are you from? Is English your native language? Have you been online much before in the past?

posted by infini at 3:30 PM on June 9 [+] [!]


This seems less an honest request for information than a thinly veiled insinuation. It's poor form and I don't appreciate it.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 3:40 PM on June 9


OK, this response right here is a great example of why people are suggesting you will have a better experience on this site if you maybe slow down and take a deep breath and do some legwork and read the archives.

In the ten minutes between infini's question and your response, you could have looked though her activity on the site - click the user name to get to the profile, click "View All Activity", which can then be sorted by Posts, Comments or Favorites, and then additionally sorted by sub-site, if you want.

It's trivially easy to discover that infini isn't American and isn't currently in America (I don't honestly remember if English is her first or maybe co-first language or what), and that her career takes her to places and puts her in contact with people who do not read, write, speak, or understand English very well (if at all), and who may be quite new to the Internet.

So infini is likely the very last person on MetaFilter to insinuate that a non-native English speaker is somehow not as good as those of us who are native English speakers. It's far far far more likely that her life experiences have taught her that language and cultural barriers can cause poor communication, and that your interaction with MetaFilter and this MeTa in particular remind her of those communication problems, and thus her question was an honest one.

And this is all discoverable, by you, by taking the time and energy to get to know some of the people in this community that you ponied up 5 bucks to join. I get that you're mad and frustrated, man, but this place can have a lot to offer if you maybe step on the brakes a little and investigate the site and the users a little more thoroughly.
posted by soundguy99 at 1:39 PM on June 9, 2013 [51 favorites]


Just saying "lolwikipedia" without bothering to read the article is not very good.

Seeing as I'm just as important a member of MeFi as you are (as indeed, are the other hundred plus commenters in this post), did you have anything to say about my LOLJournalArticles comment?

Would you care also to explain why you're not addressing my points, yet everyone should address your points?

Socratically, I'm making the point that really you maybe do interact with the thousands of people here in a far too solipsistic manner.
posted by ambrosen at 1:39 PM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


restless_nomad, can I just take a moment to say how much I have appreciated you and all the other mods in this thread? Seriously. You have the patience of saints.
posted by bitter-girl.com at 1:49 PM on June 9, 2013 [13 favorites]


If the amount of concern for ISMJ could be funneled into currency, I do believe MetaFilter could at least partially fund somebody's Kickstarter.

Which speaks amazingly well of the community for offering hundreds of bits of heartfelt advice when one of their fledgling members goes (way, way, way I mean holy fuck wayyyy) astray. It does not speak well of the fledgling member to not only shout "INCORRECT" as many times as they can muster, but then turn and declare that they know just as much if not more about this pond than the Head Gander. Because there's no such thing as a pecking order, or acquired wisdom that transcends limited experience. Hell, personal opinion beats out professional expertise when you've got a handy Wikipedia link, just like how the overwhelming need to be right completely overrules more than one request to not revive intellectual games of chicken in this thread. But what would I know about MeFi community engagement after a long period of watching MetaTalk? I'm just a silly goose, standing in front of a...

Wait.

You know what, your quackery here is not appreciated, ISMJ. Ducking around or not, being this nasty in the face of that much concern about improving the quality of your interactions here was disappointing to watch.

If anyone could recommend a pie that goes well with vanilla rooibos tea, that would be lovely and thank you.
posted by Ashen at 1:52 PM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


Metafilter: This place has a lot to offer.

That a thousand times. Do we need to go on, though?
posted by Namlit at 1:52 PM on June 9, 2013


ambrosen

There needs to be some basis for establishing what is true. If I cite Wikipedia and multiple academic sources for a fact that fact is true to a standard of "the preponderance of the evidence". It is a weaker form of truth than an immutable physical law (such as the speed of light on a vacuum), but a higher form of truth than personal anecdote or multiple personal anecdote on an internet forum. Many sociological studies rely on statistical observation on how people tend to act on average which is often the most we can say.

But any argument that has no basis other than to confirm personal desire without citing at least a preponderance of the evidence aren't really credible as statements of how people are. If we don't have a way of determining what is true we are just floundering in the dark.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 1:53 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm also interested in infini's sweater. What is it going to be next?
posted by Namlit at 1:53 PM on June 9, 2013


Ashen, what about coconut cream? I bet that would be delightful, particularly if the coconut was good and toasty.
posted by bitter-girl.com at 1:55 PM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


The basis for establishing what is true is called "good reading skills," or in conversation "good listening skills," and they aren't available online.
posted by Namlit at 1:56 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm going to go out on a limb and say it's June everywhere.

I'm going to need several peer-reviewed sources for that.
posted by ish__ at 2:02 PM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


Ashen, the correct answer is All The Pie. Any pie will do.
posted by arcticseal at 2:03 PM on June 9, 2013


If anyone could recommend a pie that goes well with vanilla rooibos tea, that would be lovely and thank you.

Or egg custard with nutmeg on top? Gingersnap crust?

If cite Wikipedia and multiple academic sources

The trouble is that these are not infallible. I can find Wikipedia articles and published papers on several things in the fields I am interested in that contain outdated information and bad studies. It happens. New things are discovered and analyzed; old data and misconceptions are refined or disproved. I am not an expert in these fields, even after years of research and study. When one of the professors here posts something contradictory, I take the time to go through and reasses my comment and theirs, and often, I'll apologize if I did leave in bad info. It isn't a bad thing to be wrong. It is a bad thing to assume that you, armed with Wikipedia, are saving experts and other experienced Mefites from floundering in the dark.
posted by jetlagaddict at 2:06 PM on June 9, 2013 [5 favorites]


Truth
posted by chrchr at 2:06 PM on June 9, 2013


If anyone could recommend a pie that goes well with vanilla rooibos tea, that would be lovely and thank you.

Apple seems the obvious and delicious choice.
posted by Drinky Die at 2:07 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


If the experts were willing to cite evidence to the fact of why they are right rather than say "I am an expert therefore you are wrong" I would be happy to read their evidence.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 2:08 PM on June 9, 2013


It is a weaker form of truth than an immutable physical law (such as the speed of light on a vacuum), but a higher form of truth than personal anecdote or multiple personal anecdote on an internet forum[...]But any argument that has no basis other than to confirm personal desire without citing at least a preponderance of the evidence aren't really credible as statements of how people are.

That's an excellent rebuttal to the commentor who said:

"I could not find a source to back this up, which I mentioned in the original thread, but anecdotally I believe it to be the case"

and

"but in my experience this is at least somewhat true"
posted by zombieflanders at 2:09 PM on June 9, 2013 [13 favorites]


ishrinkmajeans - you really do need to stop saying that citing Wikipedia shows you have done due diligence in a thread, or even the fact that you have read the sources of a Wikipedia article proves that it (and you) are correct. As someone who has sometimes edited Wikipedia to correct errors about where I work and the field I am in, I can tell you from personal experience that the quality of Wikipedia entries varies considerably. There are also Wikipedia entries with lots of what appear on the surface to be cites to legitimate journal articles, but that are written so that only one viewpoint of multiple ones is being supported, with opposing viewpoints (and legitimate scientific studies) suppressed. It is dangerous to rely on Wikipedia. Also, Metafilter has a number of subject matter experts, so asserting that you are correct in a thread based on Wikipedia and its sources, does not mean you necessarily have the info. to trump someone in the field, who has access to primary data.

(Or, on preview, what jetlagaddict said.)
posted by gudrun at 2:09 PM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


I'm pretty sure most of the women here aren't gonna let you read their vaginas.
posted by soundguy99 at 2:10 PM on June 9, 2013 [6 favorites]


but but but, you have stated that you have no cites but believe that you are right. amazing.
posted by futz at 2:10 PM on June 9, 2013


If the experts were willing to cite evidence to the fact of why they are right rather than say "I am an expert therefore you are wrong" I would be happy to read their evidence.

Seriously? What about that part where you said "i have no evidence just anecdotes and experience" ?
posted by ish__ at 2:12 PM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


If anyone could recommend a pie that goes well with vanilla rooibos tea, that would be lovely and thank you.

I'd say a very good pumpkin pie with fresh whipped cream, but only if you're willing to share.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 2:13 PM on June 9, 2013


Jesus, cribcage, from your kvetching you'd think it was you who had to read all these comments.

Well...kinda. Sure, none of us has to read/comment. But above that baseline? We don't have threaded comments on MetaFilter, so if somebody opens a MeTa about a topic and you or I want to participate, then we have to read the thread. We can't click-closed a section of it. We can't hide or disable subtopics from our Recent Activity feed. If you find the conversation interesting and want to read or participate in it, then you have to read the comments.

Now flip it around. Nobody has to talk about beer on the Internet. Some people want to, and that's totally cool. But there are lots of places to do it: the official Chat channel, MetaChat, IRC, a private email list, the active alphabet thread, etc. Honestly, it's a little like going to a jazz club and having the table beside you loudly talking about baseball all night. Baseball's great, but aren't there a million other places where people can discuss it without being antisocial?

I feel like I need to note that you specifically have recently on a couple of occasions expressed an objection to the idea that Metatalk threads might end up closed on shortish (as in, on the order of an hour or two) notice when folks with slower engagement cycles on the site might not have a chance to get in on a thread between when the idea of closing it arises and when closure happens.

I have. (And as it happens, here I am replying fifteen hours later—not to make a point, but because I went to a Star Trek convention. Which was kinda neat, incidentally. I'd never been to one before.)

It's kind of a one-or-the-other thing; we can't in any reasonable way have both Metatalk threads staying open to let people have their say and threads not having this organic wandering and social tomfoolery, much as we do want people not to aggressively and preemptively derail discussions while they're still in their early stages and going strong.

I disagree. I think you do plenty of topical moderation without straying into iron-fist territory. In this very thread for instance, you've taken turns admonishing about the original FPP derail. I think it's an extreme example—you don't usually need to repeat this many times, "Don't import that derail into MeTa"—and even so, I don't think y'all are coming across as tyrannical and I think it's been pretty effective. People are, for the most part, talking in constructive ways about what made the derail problematic (eg, why studies can sometimes create more problems) and not delving into the derail topic.
posted by cribcage at 2:14 PM on June 9, 2013 [2 favorites]


Ish

I am admitting that in part of my argument I had an opinion that seemed a logical extension of a known fact. One I would change if presented with evidence to the contrary, but would hold as logical until such time. This seems intellectually honest in the extreme. I invite you to read over my previous posts.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 2:15 PM on June 9, 2013


Thanks for the answer, ishrinkmajeans. I appreciate that it was given sincerely but feel we are talking past each other. My main point in writing the comment that I referred you to was that most fields are too broad to have "a truth".

You really should internalise that. That is a hugely important lesson.

My main point in demanding you address my comment?: To get you to understand quite what a breadth of, (in the case of things other people have said), wisdom is being thrown your way. And instead of catching it and stockpiling it for when you have time to take it all in, you're treating it like you're playing tennis and the only valid way to deal with it is to hit it straight back over the net at whoever's saying it.

So when this thread's over, go over to the other side of the court, and pick up those tennis balls of knowledge you hit back, and the ones you let sail by because you didn't realise they were there for the collecting. Yes, collect up all the balls of ideas and wisdom and knowledge and have a read.

And some of them aren't that useful for anyone, some of them won't hit the right spot for you, and some of them might really make you understand why all these people put all this work in.
posted by ambrosen at 2:16 PM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


restless_nomad, if you're going to close the thread by Fiat, I recommend a Multipla.

That's about the only way this thing could get any uglier.
posted by box at 2:16 PM on June 9, 2013 [4 favorites]


I invite you to read over my previous posts.

Oh believe me, I've followed this thread with great interest. This is reaching sixcolors hilarity.
posted by ish__ at 2:23 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I am admitting that in part of my argument I had an opinion that seemed a logical extension of a known fact. One I would change if presented with evidence to the contrary, but would hold as logical until such time. This seems intellectually honest in the extreme. I invite you to read over my previous posts.

Intellectual honesty according to, yes, Wikipedia:
Intellectual honesty is an applied method of problem solving in academia, characterized by an unbiased, honest attitude, which can be demonstrated in a number of different ways, including but not limited to:

* One's personal beliefs do not interfere with the pursuit of truth;
* Relevant facts and information are not purposefully omitted even when such things may contradict one's hypothesis;
* Facts are presented in an unbiased manner, and not twisted to give misleading impressions or to support one view over another;
* References, or earlier work, are acknowledged where possible, and plagiarism is avoided.
At the very least, anecdata and opinion contravenes #1 and #3.
posted by zombieflanders at 2:24 PM on June 9, 2013 [7 favorites]


I am admitting that in part of my argument I had an opinion that seemed a logical extension of a known fact. One I would change if presented with evidence to the contrary, but would hold as logical until such time. This seems intellectually honest in the extreme.

This is a very, very long thread and people are dipping in and out. Would you mind concretely stating what opinion you are referring to, and (because I have a suspicion what you're referring to) whether you would accept personal experience as evidence?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 2:24 PM on June 9, 2013


misha wrote...
You were not getting deleted because you were wrong, but because what you were arguing had no place in the context of the thread.

I feel like if only the difference between talking and communication were clear to people that much strife could be avoided.

Communication is only achieved when the listener can hear the message. That means speaking up at the right time, in the right context, and in the right language so that people can take it in. Failing to do will result in a failure of communication.

Languages are good example of this. You could stand in front of a crowd of Inuit and speak the greatest truths in the universe, but if you did it in the Sesotho language very few people (most likely none) are going to benefit in the least from your speech. You will have talked but you will not have been heard. You will not have communicated.

That said the subtleties of the recognizing the right context --- what is often called "reading the room" -- are a difficult art to master. It does help to know that is what you're trying to sort out though.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 2:25 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


Intellectual disgrace!
Stares from ev'ry human face.

And the depths of pity lie,
Locked and frozen in each eye.
posted by Juffo-Wup at 2:25 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


At the very least, anecdata and opinion contravenes #1 and #3.

I don't think so, as long as you don't try and present them as something else and are open to having them challenged.
posted by Drinky Die at 2:27 PM on June 9, 2013



I'm also interested in infini's sweater. What is it going to be next?

Multi coloured bits and bobs of yarn from Mum's bag of leftovers made into one of those long floppy scarves in stripes. I'll choose colours by closing my eyes.


And I realized, upon reflection, that actually my libido is probably much lower than tightjeans over there - young men and menopausal women have differing levels of hormones. Though, its my testosterone that's now in ascendance so its going to be interesting to see what emerges when its all over. Just noted this isn't first young male ass I've felt like booting into the nearest canal in the past week.
posted by infini at 2:29 PM on June 9, 2013 [9 favorites]


I love a nice long floppy stripey scarf. Are we talking Doctor Who style long and floppy, or something less than that?
posted by palomar at 2:31 PM on June 9, 2013 [1 favorite]


I am admitting that in part of my argument I had an opinion that seemed a logical extension of a known fact. One I would change if presented with evidence to the contrary, but would hold as logical until such time. This seems intellectually honest in the extreme.

This is a very, very long thread and people are dipping in and out. Would you mind concretely stating what opinion you are referring to, and (because I have a suspicion what you're referring to) whether you would accept personal experience as evidence?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 2:24 PM on June 9 [+] [!]


I am referring to my comment that women have an easier time getting sex than men. This seems a logical extension of men having higher libidos than women but I could not find supporting evidence to support this so I must take it as a logical extension open to factual verification or refutation. We are talking about men and women in the aggregate so personal experience here will not validate a general rule. This does not invalidate any one persons experience as it relates to them, simply that it cannot have the weight of evidence as referring to people generally.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 2:31 PM on June 9, 2013


I don't think so, as long as you don't try and present them as something else and are open to having them challenged.

Neither of which, protestations to the contrary, are very much in evidence from his comments. One is not as dismissive as he was of shellycat's statements without having dug their heels in already, to say nothing of his general attitude towards other commentors regardless of their attitude or the site itself.
posted by zombieflanders at 2:32 PM on June 9, 2013


I am referring to my comment that women have an easier time getting sex than men. This seems a logical extension of men having higher libidos than women but I could not find supporting evidence to support this so I must take it as a logical extension open to factual verification or refutation.

If you will not accept personal anecdote, then may I instead ask you how you are factoring the effects of variance in personal attractiveness into this assumption?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 2:33 PM on June 9, 2013


Empress, you are specifically baiting him into doing the thing I have asked him, repeatedly, not to do. Please don't.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 2:34 PM on June 9, 2013 [16 favorites]


If you will not accept personal anecdote, then may I instead ask you how you are factoring the effects of variance in personal attractiveness into this assumption?

Actually personal attractiveness is easily statistically controlled. There are ways of rating attractiveness by facial symmetry and body shape among both men and women and then forming a ranking of attractiveness of the two types. We could then make scientific statements of the form of "men of attractiveness in the 88th percentile to 94th behaved in this manner" etc. personal anecdote is unnecessary.
posted by ishrinkmajeans at 2:38 PM on June 9, 2013


I'm going to go out on a limb and say it's June everywhere.

After reading all the way to this point in the thread, it's kind of winter in my heart.

And the best beer in the world is the one that you are about to drink. It may also be the worst beer in the world, but, up until the moment you take that first sip, you won't know which.

Looking at the original purpose of this thread, I don't think the thread on the Blue that generated this had an unacceptable level of name-calling. There was an about-average level of snark considering the derail. Yeah, any name-calling is kind of less-than-helpful, but I am not sure even polite disagreement would have gotten us anywhere except here -- rehashing the derail in a thread with is explicitly not about rehashing derails.

Thinking back over the last 36 hours or so of this thread, I think the general situation has been explained in great detail to absolutely no effect. I usually don't like to ask for closing a MeTa, but, in this case, considering how circular it's become, anyone who wants to continue could just go back to the top and start again.
posted by GenjiandProust at 2:38 PM on June 9, 2013 [7 favorites]


Get a room you two.....
posted by ish__ at 2:39 PM on June 9, 2013


This seems a logical extension of men having higher libidos than women but I could not find supporting evidence to support this so I must take it as a logical extension open to factual verification or refutation.

You specifically cited your own anecdotal experience of this, but will not accept the anecdotal evidence to the contrary of someone else.

Again, I'll ask, do you not see this as a problematic way to argue? Do you really think that it's your argument that's unpopular, and not your method?
posted by rtha at 2:39 PM on June 9, 2013 [9 favorites]


And I'll add, it's...off-putting, to say the least, that you will consider your own anecdata a "logical extension" but not offer that courtesy to anyone else.
posted by rtha at 2:40 PM on June 9, 2013 [3 favorites]


OK, since ishrinkmajeans is not responding in any way to the request not to derail this thread, too, and I think all of the issues have been discussed to a fare-thee-well, I'm going to go ahead and close it.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 2:41 PM on June 9, 2013 [44 favorites]


« Older A current thread in AskMe is a...  |  This thread has shattered the ... Newer »

This thread is closed to new comments.