Are the 'deleted' blogs defunct? July 14, 2015 2:37 AM   Subscribe

The (as far as I know, unofficial) blogs for deleted MetaFilter posts and deleted AskMetafilter posts do not seem to get updated lately. Is something broken, or is something else going on? Does anyone know?
posted by Too-Ticky to MetaFilter-Related at 2:37 AM (37 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

Yeah, these are unofficial so I do not know, but my guess is something has changed and it's affected the updating.

As I understand it, the blogs are populated automatically via an api that scrapes the front pages of Mefi and Ask Me looking for missing post ID numbers (creator cj_ explains here), so it's possible some change with the Blogger posting system, or our site code (which pb can comment on in a bit), or perhaps the api itself has interfered with the process.
posted by taz (staff) at 2:52 AM on July 14, 2015


We haven't made any changes recently on our end that would break things.
posted by pb (staff) at 3:03 AM on July 14, 2015 [1 favorite]


I've always noticed that there's a few days' lag, could it just be behind a little more than usual?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:13 AM on July 14, 2015


I've heard from cj_ that there is in fact some known headache on the blogger end of things; he'll have it back updating when he can, but for now it's, yeah, having a moment.
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:18 AM on July 14, 2015 [2 favorites]


Thank you Cortex! Good to hear that it will be fixed. I always like being able to sneak a peek at deleted stuff.
posted by Too-Ticky at 5:49 AM on July 14, 2015 [4 favorites]


The MetaFilter Deleted Posts UserScript works with Tampermonkey on Chrome (with my config anyway). There are a few weird display issues from time to time and I seem to remember having to tweak it a while back when site changes were made. It basically unhides deleted posts inline and highlights them so it's obvious they are deleted. If you're on something that can handle userscripts it might be an option for you.
posted by Clinging to the Wreckage at 8:26 AM on July 14, 2015 [3 favorites]


I see deleted posts via RSS. It's even become the basis of a little game I play: "Guess whether the post will be deleted by reading the RSS summary."

I always thought the deleted posts sites were just pulling down RSS and parsing that. Does the RSS feed not reflect the full state of reality (i.e. do deleted posts eventually disappear from it)?
posted by mph at 8:26 AM on July 14, 2015 [3 favorites]


It basically unhides deleted posts inline and highlights them so it's obvious they are deleted.

Seconding this script. It's very cool.

Although I keep meaning to try and tweak it to display better on the Pro White Background. It uses a very light gray text that tends to get lost.
posted by zarq at 8:32 AM on July 14, 2015


This is what it looks like to me with the userscript. I also use the Pro White. I know I've tweaked it over the years but I can't remember how or where exactly. I can upload the script as I have it later if anyone cares but I can't do it from work due to browsing restrictions. It's too long to dump here as a comment.

For comparison - Classic Modern Modern Dark
posted by Clinging to the Wreckage at 8:47 AM on July 14, 2015


do deleted posts eventually disappear from it?

Yes, deleted posts are removed from RSS feeds but once a feed reader has a post it tends to hang onto it and display it.
posted by pb (staff) at 8:52 AM on July 14, 2015


I always like being able to sneak a peek at deleted stuff.

Me too! The HARSH TRUTHS that BIG METAFILTER doesn't want you to know are out there!!
posted by prize bull octorok at 9:23 AM on July 14, 2015 [11 favorites]


I still miss puke & cry who ran one of the original "deleted threads" blogs.
posted by Nevin at 10:30 AM on July 14, 2015 [7 favorites]


Those sites are invaluable as a balm for fragile egos, in that you can go there and see that even SUPER-POPULAR and HIGH-VOLUME me-fite posters get deleted sometimes, same as you. Anyway, works for me. Sometimes.
posted by valkane at 1:36 PM on July 14, 2015 [2 favorites]


Totally. It's also helpful when you release your little pet into the wild hoping it lives a long and healthy life only to find it got sent to "the farm". It's comforting to go and visit the farm. Gone but not forgotten, little ones...
posted by billiebee at 1:44 PM on July 14, 2015 [7 favorites]


🚬👽🙌👾
posted by clavdivs at 1:58 PM on July 14, 2015 [2 favorites]


I have sometimes wondered if there are deletion stats. For e.g. what days/times have the most deletions, or is it evenly spread? How about percentage wise, as some days get more posts than others. And which mefites have the most deleted posts, either directly or as a percentage. Just idle curiosity, but if there are any datawankers out there who fancy wrangling the numbers, please do!
posted by marienbad at 5:36 PM on July 14, 2015


On a related note, were there one or more attempts at FPPs regarding the international nuclear deal today that were deleted?

I was surprised to see it fail to make the blue, and ordinarily I'd check the deleted posts blog before investing the time in crafting my own FPP.
posted by Xavier Xavier at 5:45 PM on July 14, 2015


Going through the post numbers manually, it appears there were not!
posted by Shmuel510 at 5:50 PM on July 14, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yeah, I wouldn't be surprised if someone was slow-cooking one about the Iran deal but nothing yet.

I have sometimes wondered if there are deletion stats. For e.g. what days/times have the most deletions, or is it evenly spread?

Would certainly be computable for posts, at least, from the Infodump data, yeah; we include deletion status.

If someone does feel computational, I'd recommend keeping the focus on aggregate stats, not identifying individual users; someone inquiring directly about their own deletion metrics is one thing, but volunteering any sort of ranking there in general could make some folks feel uncomfortable.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:09 PM on July 14, 2015


Before I realized there was a Deleted Posts Blog, I would often manually change the numbers in the URL bar to see what was recently-deleted. To have an aggregated site for deletions is certainly easier.
posted by Greg Nog at 8:41 PM on July 14, 2015 [2 favorites]


I'd be interested in "trivia-like" stats along the lines of:
  • Are there certain words in posts or post titles that disproportionately correlate with deletion?
  • Is there a pattern to whether longer or shorter posts get deleted?
  • Does length of the title play into it?
  • Number of tags?
  • Any specific tags?
  • Is there a correlation between the number of links and the likelihood of deletion?
  • Or how about the ratio of linked text to unlinked text?
  • Maybe the ratio of "description" vs. "extended description" size?
  • Anything else along those lines
You know, just in case someone gets bored...
posted by primethyme at 10:25 PM on July 14, 2015


Before I realized there was a Deleted Posts Blog, I would often manually change the numbers in the URL bar to see what was recently-deleted. To have an aggregated site for deletions is certainly easier.

Bring back (the old unredacted) lofi.mefi, I say.
posted by dng at 4:24 AM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


I would read the hell out of a collection of "Mefi deletion reasons"; these are usually a hoot & a half.
posted by chavenet at 7:36 AM on July 15, 2015


For DIY fun, you could grab this ~3MB .zip from the Infodump, open it in a spreadsheet, and sort by the "reason" column for a list of all of the deletions reasons ever given on the blue. Warning: many deletion reasons actually quite boring.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:39 AM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


cortex: Warning: many deletion reasons actually quite boring.

Didn't you once write a deletion reason that was something like "Fuck off spamming our website you fucking spam cunt." I am sure you did, it made me laugh loads. It was someone well known who made the post, not a known mefite, someone else. Sorry I am vague on the details, it was a long time ago now.
posted by marienbad at 8:42 AM on July 15, 2015


Apparently, only one deletion reason uses the "C" word.
posted by zarq at 8:54 AM on July 15, 2015


I'm sure I've referred to fucking spammers or such on a couple of occasions, and you may be thinking specifically of me telling Tao Lin not to fucking spam our site. But I can guarantee you without checking that neither I nor any other moderator has ever called someone a cunt in a deletion reason.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:55 AM on July 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


This post was deleted for the following reason: If you're going to get decent at your SEO job, you might want to figure out how to not sound like such an SEO SPAMMER ALL THE TIME. Er. Sef-link, banned. -- jessamyn -- mathowie

This post was deleted for the following reason: fucking banned seo spammer. fucking banned. -- mathowie

This post was deleted for the following reason: are you fucking kidding me -- cortex

This post was deleted for the following reason: OH FOR FUCKS SAKE
posted by zarq at 9:03 AM on July 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Oh, interesting. The txt file says the deletion reason for "55344" is "read the fucking rules, douchebag" but the page says: "Nothing to see here, move along...
You've stumbled upon a non-existent post, or one that was deleted for various reasons."

I vaguely remember that some older posts weren't saved?
posted by zarq at 9:06 AM on July 15, 2015


You're looking at a mefi deletion on the metatalk subdomain for some reason, is the issue there; actual deletion is still there.

In the early days, thread deletions were actually nuked outright because that's just how Matt had set it up originally, but those won't appear in the infodump files at all; they're just numeric gaps in the postid order. We have deleted-as-in-nuked a handful of posts after the fact in the last decade, but it's very rare.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:10 AM on July 15, 2015


Oh, doh! That was dumb of me.

Thanks for explaining. :)
posted by zarq at 9:12 AM on July 15, 2015


Progress being made!!!

There's an empty post (presumably a test) on it now!
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 9:00 AM on July 21, 2015


In one of my favorite deletion reasons, cortex didn't mince words all that much.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 9:28 AM on July 21, 2015


And now two more!!!
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 11:44 AM on July 21, 2015


In one of my favorite deletion reasons, cortex didn't mince words all that much.

Is 7 years later too late to start a meta demanding that a post be reinstated? Asking for a friend.
posted by billiebee at 1:07 PM on July 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yay, AskMeDeleted is back! Thank you, cj_ !
posted by Too-Ticky at 6:44 AM on July 26, 2015


They're both back, and they've backfilled all the time they missed! Thank you for your hard work!
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 11:40 AM on July 27, 2015


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