SLFBPs April 4, 2017 12:53 AM   Subscribe

I am not on Facebook. I'm not going to be on Facebook. When a FPP consists of a single link to a Facebook page, it's not much use to me, since FB blocks half the page with a sign-up popup. Maybe posters could warn us private persons that we'd be wasting our time clicking on the link? Thanks.
posted by Kirth Gerson to Etiquette/Policy at 12:53 AM (90 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

First of all, apologies to Kirth Gerson for delay in putting this through, it's been extra busy on the admin side for the last few days. Secondly, as a non-FBer myself, I recognize this problem, and agree it would be a good thing to keep in mind. Checking to see if there is a non-FB version somewhere would be helpful, or if there isn't an alternative, a [Facebook] or [FB link] notification after the link would be useful. (I think literally using "SLFBP" would just be confusing though).
posted by taz (staff) at 12:56 AM on April 4 [17 favorites]


Checking to see if there is a non-FB version somewhere would be helpful, or if there isn't an alternative, a [Facebook] or [FB link] notification after the link would be useful.

Seconded. Although I could see the content. Blocking FB's javascript helps here because the popup doesn't show up. But still, seconded.
posted by Too-Ticky at 1:29 AM on April 4 [3 favorites]


Maybe posters could warn us private persons that we'd be wasting our time clicking on the link?

As someone who is also not on Facebook, I also support this small heads up.

I think literally using "SLFBP" would just be confusing though.

SLFBP, that obviously stands for Single Link Ferrets Badgers and Pottery. What's confusing about that?!?! Pretty self explanatory.
posted by Fizz at 3:35 AM on April 4 [15 favorites]


I support the ferrets, badgers and pottery posts.
posted by taz (staff) at 4:05 AM on April 4 [31 favorites]


Oh god do not overextend the "SL[more letters]" acronym. It's already pointless and annoying and frequently incorrect.
posted by ardgedee at 4:17 AM on April 4 [31 favorites]


I always hover links on Metafilter to see what they point to, since there are many sites I try to avoid (because they're browser-hijackerish, or I prefer to not give them traffic, or because they run adblocker-blockers, or they're streaming media and I can't/don't handle that at the time).

On iOS and Android devices you can hold your thumb over the mouse until a popup dialog appears with browsing options. At the top of the dialog will be the target URL.
posted by ardgedee at 4:20 AM on April 4 [11 favorites]


It seemed like a gag line, but in fact it appears it might be a real thing. (SLFBP)

(I agree with the general sentiment of identifying Facebook links.)
posted by nickmark at 4:37 AM on April 4 [2 favorites]


Oh god do not overextend the "SL[more letters]" acronym. It's already pointless and annoying and frequently incorrect

I agree that we should NOT overextend the SL[ML]A. "Do not OTSL[ML]A" should be on the FAQ, and we should be able to link directly to "DNOTSL[ML]A" on the FAQ with a single link. The SLFAQ(DNOTSL[ML]A) will then be a convenient shorthand to use if an FPP OsTSL[ML]A, and we'll be like: "FPP OsTSL[ML]A??? SLFAQ(DNOTSL[ML]A)!!!"

And that's the kind of clear and open communication MetaFilter will have when we all V#1QK.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 4:50 AM on April 4 [115 favorites]


Blocking FB's javascript helps here because the popup doesn't show up.

Didn't work for me. If I disallow the FB javascript, the page is completely blank. If I allow it, the popup covers it.

If posters are willing to add "(facebook)" to their posts, that would work. I have no investment in the SL** convention.

taz: no worries.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:53 AM on April 4 [3 favorites]


...also, the Facebook video links don't work for me half the time. Ugh. I'm in agreement-plus with this general sentiment. Indicate somehow if people _must_ link to Facebook.
posted by amtho at 6:24 AM on April 4


Non facebook user, I hover before I click. And I'll click anyway if it looks very interesting. So mostly don't care that much if you add another acronym and if people remember to use it.

Linking to a non-facebook source when there is an option is greatly appreciated, however.
posted by mark k at 7:16 AM on April 4


I think literally using "SLFBP" would just be confusing though

Although it is fun to try to pronounce it.
posted by JanetLand at 8:09 AM on April 4 [7 favorites]


I'm on Facebook, but it's firewalled at work, so I get really demoralized when I click on the link and get the frownie face icon. So yeah, this would be much appreciated.
posted by holborne at 8:10 AM on April 4


Oftentimes (including the Facebook overlays in question), overlays that conceal the content you're interested in can be removed*. Right click on the overlay; most browsers have a context menu option "Inspect Element" or similar. Select that. This will bring up the developer tools for that browser- you'll see something like the html source** for the page, with a highlight on the source for the element you originally right-clicked on. If you start mousing over that html, you'll see different boxes get highlighted on the actual page. When you see an element you don't like, right-click on its html source and choose "Delete Element" or similar. Oftentimes the overlay will have something like "class='overlay'" to make this task easier.

I mostly use this technique to get rid of nags and overlays but it occasionally comes in handy in other ways. If you ever want to print something, you can get rid of elements you don't need to save paper.

*If the overlay is created on the client side with javascript, this technique will work. But if the server is trying to stop you from seeing the page (e.g. smarter paywalls) they can send you shitty markup which this technique can't help you with.

**technically not the html source; it's a view of the DOM: the tree of in-memory objects that the browser parsed out of the source. The important thing is, this can be modified to suit your purposes and you don't need special tools to do it; all major browsers allow you to massage the DOM.
posted by Jpfed at 8:20 AM on April 4 [4 favorites]


massage the DOM.

I didn't realize my browser and I had that sort of relationship.

Anyway, I also am in favor of a [FB] notice.
posted by Greg_Ace at 8:22 AM on April 4 [12 favorites]


massage the DOM

I think we are veering off topic now. Besides, you don't just decide to massage the DOM.
posted by trinity8-director at 9:44 AM on April 4 [4 favorites]


I would support some acknowledgement that links to Facebook aren't best of the web - they're not 'the web' at all.
posted by mce at 9:47 AM on April 4 [11 favorites]


I resisted Facebook for 11 years. Oh well, now I be sheeple.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:48 AM on April 4 [2 favorites]


Adding my AMEN to "links to Facebook aren't best of the web - they're not 'the web' at all." Can you say "Walled Garden"? Can you say "Peter Theil's Playground'???
posted by oneswellfoop at 9:54 AM on April 4 [1 favorite]


"Oh god do not overextend the "SL[more letters]" acronym. It's already pointless and annoying and frequently incorrect."

Number one MetaFilter pet peeve:
Check out this cute cat! [SLYT] [more inside]
where [more inside] contains more links.

I would really like to say that I don't give a damn about where a link leads, or how many of them there are - and most of the time that would be true. However, as another non-FB-having person, I'd love a warning for FB links. Something like the 'play' button that appears next to a YT link when I'm logged in, except it should be the skull and crossbones emoji or equivalent.
posted by komara at 10:03 AM on April 4


However, as another non-FB-having person, I'd love a warning for FB links. Something like the 'play' button that appears next to a YT link when I'm logged in, except it should be the skull and crossbones emoji or equivalent.

At this point where it feels the internet is turning into a lot of huge walled gardens, I wonder if it wouldn't be better if when parsing links from certain sites an icon next to the link was added automatically, just like there is one for media content from Youtube instead of having to constantly argue about adding [stuff] at the end.
Twitter (when someone quotes a complete tweet but still leaves a linkback that doesn't add anything), Facebook (for privacy purposes/not being able to see without an account) and NYTimes (paywall) would be perhaps the first to get their own.

Feasible?
posted by lmfsilva at 11:14 AM on April 4 [2 favorites]


lmfsilva, my thoughts exactly! I've been thinking about this, particularly in relationship to links that point to tweets.

Icons seem doable enough, given that we can enable YT/Vimeo content to be identified with the play button. I would suggest:
- Twitter
- Facebook
- Potentially paywalled news [wall icon? [PW]?]
- PDFs
- Other documents (including video, audio, and compressed files?)

As mobile devices become increasingly common (mobile devices outnumbered "traditional" PCs in 2013 or 2014) and there's no easy option to "hover" over a link to identify the content, these seem like fair warnings.

And if icons are a hassle, maybe a text alternative would work? [Tw], [Fb], [PW], [PDF], [File] could be used in place of icons, and would be flexible across platforms.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:28 AM on April 4 [2 favorites]


FBO. Facebook only?
posted by Splunge at 12:04 PM on April 4


And that's the kind of clear and open communication MetaFilter will have when we all V#1QK.

I am leaning towards V#1QK, but I need to know more -- does your campaign have a facebook page I can like?
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:15 PM on April 4 [6 favorites]


As mobile devices become increasingly common (mobile devices outnumbered "traditional" PCs in 2013 or 2014) and there's no easy option to "hover" over a link to identify the content, these seem like fair warnings.

Hold the link with your finger. The target url will appear. This works on both Android and iOS.
posted by zarq at 12:50 PM on April 4 [6 favorites]


Also, from experience, people will complain in the thread about linked sites if you label those that go to ones they dislike. They will also complain if you don't label links that go to sites they dislike. Instead of creating labels, it would probably be more efficient for the mods to add a note to the FAQ that in the past, Mefites have voiced complaints about the following sites and should you include links to them in your posts, people may complain no matter how they are presented.
posted by zarq at 12:55 PM on April 4 [3 favorites]


Hold the link with your finger. The target url will appear. This works on both Android and iOS.

What about on my RAZR flip phone
posted by beerperson at 12:58 PM on April 4 [7 favorites]


Maybe posters could warn us private persons that we'd be wasting our time

I can get behind this.
posted by arcticseal at 1:22 PM on April 4


I think literally using "SLFBP" would just be confusing though

Although it is fun to try to pronounce it.

"Edin-burrah"
posted by griphus at 1:34 PM on April 4 [1 favorite]


I think literally using “SLFBP” would just be confusing though

Although it is fun to try to pronounce it.

“Sluff-bup”
posted by Going To Maine at 2:20 PM on April 4


"Sili-fabop"
posted by Greg_Ace at 2:35 PM on April 4


Sounds like a new Hanson hit.
posted by solarion at 3:06 PM on April 4 [2 favorites]


Also I'd be for little icons next to links but I don't know if that's entirely feasible on the technical side. Bracketing ([FB], [WaPo], etc) seems agreeable and I'll trial to see if I actually remember to do that when posting links.
posted by solarion at 3:08 PM on April 4


I think literally using "SLFBP" would just be confusing though

Although it is fun to try to pronounce it.


"self-boop," obviously
posted by solotoro at 3:15 PM on April 4 [16 favorites]


I think literally using “SLFBP” would just be confusing though

Although it is fun to try to pronounce it.


Isn't this what Bill the Cat says on Bloom County?
posted by Bringer Tom at 3:21 PM on April 4 [1 favorite]


Adding my AMEN to "links to Facebook aren't best of the web - they're not 'the web' at all." Can you say "Walled Garden"? Can you say "Peter Theil's Playground'???

The main links for the last five MeFi posts I've made: 1) Twitter, 2) Instagram, 3) YouTube, 4) The New Yorker, and 5) Bandcamp.

They're all walled in some way. YouTube serves you ads before you see the content unless you subscribe to their paid service. The New Yorker has a paywall after a certain number of articles accessed per month. Bandcamp limits your number of repeat listens for some tracks.

If we're restricting "walled gardens" wholesale, then I think we all have to look back at our posting history and see what posts and links would be removed. And whether your post is legitimately restrictive or just somewhat annoying to some MeFites.

If we're looking for a bright line rule, I'd place it at: if nearly everyone can still access the content for free, within reason, and get to the words/video/images/music that the FPP is linking to regardless of whether they have accounts, then it's fair game, even if it's technically content that is siloed inside of some megacorporation's website. Under this rule, you might get a splash page or annoying window asking you to subscribe or sign up. But the content - in most cases, content only available in that one location - is still accessible, and presumably noteworthy enough that someone is making an FPP based on it.

I'm not up on my terminology, but I think it's worth differentiating the different levels of walled content - "permissive", "restrictive", and "lax restrictive". Permissive = sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram that still allow non-users to access the full content (as long as the content is not set to private), with varying degrees of pestering you to sign up. Restrictive = stuff like Law360 that gives you a sentence or paragraph and then forces you to subscribe to see the rest, no exceptions. Lax restrictive would be sites like The New Yorker, NYT, and Wall Street Journal that allow a certain amount of access before restricting (and, if you're ethically willing to do a quick workaround to remove cookies, only provide a brief hindrance at that point).

And then something arguably on the cusp of "restrictive" and "lax restrictive" might be JSTOR's model for (limited) free access to (some) academic papers, where we might have to distinguish between the type of content and whether the sitebase thinks a given link is overly restrictive or still on the side of wide accessibility. Another example would be content that is strongly region-restricted by country - not sure how we deal with that exactly (when I've seen this for YouTube content, I think people complain but without any real expectation of the FPP being deleted; maybe we just accept the less-than-ideal situation).

But for most cases, unless something is firmly in the "restrictive" category, I'm on the side of erring toward allowing it. It's on the web, it's potentially great content, it's accessible to the vast majority of MeFites whether they're signed into a specific site or not.

A warning like [Facebook] might be good practice, but I don't think it's should be encouraged to the point where you're breaching site etiquette if you fail to do this. Construction of an FPP is an art, and every word and bit of space is important to consider. For example, maybe you want a minimalist, "mystery meat" FPP above the fold, like mine here, and [Twitter] would distract from the impact. You should be able to do things like that without cluttering your post up. We're not just throwing out information haphazardly when we construct an FPP, after all. Some people may prefer to throw in a [WaPo] or [SLYT], and that's their style. I personally don't care to do it most of the time.

Icons are a horrible idea - it's bad enough that we have the little section to share a post on twitter or facebook. Do we really want to advertise these sites with their little logos strewn all over the site? I doubt it. We like our simple text-and-hyperlinks website just fine.
posted by naju at 3:38 PM on April 4 [6 favorites]


Perhaps an alternative - FPP with few links (say <= 3) automatically get those links tagged with their top level domain. Regardless of where they come from.
posted by mce at 4:06 PM on April 4


Is this conversation predicated on the idea that people click the links in a post
posted by beerperson at 4:12 PM on April 4 [16 favorites]


Turn on your YouTube inline preview in preferences and then look at this post of mine. Specifically, the first sentence below the fold. It has 12 youtube links in it.

Now this is an extreme case, but that one sentence is all but unreadable with those preview icons.

Adding similar icons to every link will make posts less readable. Mouseovers and holdovers already reveal a link's URL on most devices that will access this site. Further cluttering the front page for no logical reason seems like a terrible idea.
posted by zarq at 4:21 PM on April 4 [2 favorites]


I feel like there's a number of things we're supposed to be remembering to warn people about when it comes to posts -- some that have been around forever (NSFW, epilepsy triggers), and more that have been popping up lately (more general content warnings, accessibility features, this). It might be time to start reconsidering the posting interface to ask (in a non-mandatory way) about these things, rather than leaving it on people to remember them and apply the right acronyms/pseudo-tags to the post. Then the site could surface them in a consistent, easier to use manner.
posted by jacquilynne at 4:23 PM on April 4 [7 favorites]


Permissive = sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram that still allow non-users to access the full content (as long as the content is not set to private), with varying degrees of pestering you to sign up.

Mm. Two things, though - one of which is that Twitter & Instagram are "all or nothing", private or public, pick one. FB (I'm pretty sure) gives you more fine-grained options for what is supposedly private and what is public, and people goof this up all the time. So in practice FB is not quite so permissive.

The second is simply that fucking pop-up, which first covers the bottom third of the screen, then sliiiiiides up to cover the whole screen as you try to scroll down the page, then when you've clicked "not now" goes back to covering the bottom third, then repeat the whole damn process every time you try to go to a different sub-page/section/whatever you want to call it. This actively intrusive bullshit was the final nail in my personal "FUCK YOU FACEBOOK" coffin.

(Source: it's often quicker & easier for me to find out info about an event I'm working or an act I'm going to be working with by trawling the web rather than playing phone/email tag with people. So I go poking around and discover that, say, a little music festival just has a FB event page, no other web page, and even if I had a personal FB page I would not be logged into it at work on a computer that is intentionally open & available to not only every employee but several sub-contractors so I have to deal with that fucking pop-up fucking bouncing around the damn screen all the damn time and then about half the time when I discover that the festival has a post with a poster of their schedule I think, "OK, I'll go to their "photos" page so I can look at an actual readably-sized version" and NNNNNNOOOOOOPE "must log in to continue" because the person who set up the FB event page doesn't understand how to set up their public & private options. At which point I seriously consider dousing the computer in lighter fluid and lighting a match.)


Which is to say I like this pony (OP's being aware of the fact that FB is not necessarily all that accessible and possibly warnings of FB links) and would feed it carrots every day.
posted by soundguy99 at 4:26 PM on April 4 [2 favorites]


Besides, you don't just decide to massage the DOM.

Heavens, no! First you have to wash the dishes, do the laundry, scrub the floors, and clean the bathrooms.
posted by octobersurprise at 7:10 PM on April 4


Is this conversation predicated on the idea that people click the links in a post

Is this something I would need a computer to click?
posted by Devils Rancher at 8:45 PM on April 4 [2 favorites]


I support warning us re: FaceBook posts. To me, whenever I am sent to FB via link and I get that darn overlay, I feel like I have been some sort of form of Rick rolled.
posted by AugustWest at 8:56 PM on April 4 [2 favorites]



If we're looking for a bright line rule, I'd place it at: if nearly everyone can still access the content for free, within reason, and get to the words/video/images/music that the FPP is linking to regardless of whether they have accounts, then it's fair game, even if it's technically content that is siloed inside of some megacorporation's website. Under this rule, you might get a splash page or annoying window asking you to subscribe or sign up. But the content - in most cases, content only available in that one location - is still accessible, and presumably noteworthy enough that someone is making an FPP based on it.


The "splash page or annoying window" are actually my own issue. I have no qualm with Facebook, but WaPo, NYt, and most other magazines I do - because of that splash page or annoying window, which actually does not go away.

Although even worse are the pages that recognize I've got an ad blocker and throw up a page blocker begging me to whitelist them before I can view the content.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 2:48 AM on April 5 [3 favorites]


Some people will link content you don't like, or to sites you don't prefer. There's a lot of linking to non-free newspaper websites, non-labelled PDF links, links to content that's blocked for anyone outside of the US, etc, etc. There's nothing to do but shrug and move on.
posted by Dysk at 3:14 AM on April 5 [5 favorites]


Well, no. There is something to do, which is discuss it here.
posted by agregoli at 5:30 AM on April 5 [5 favorites]


Similar discussions in the past have always gone the same way: as long as most or a significant number of users can access a thing, it's fine, but try to be aware of this and provide more widely accessible links where possible.
posted by Dysk at 5:36 AM on April 5 [1 favorite]


They always have? Is that how the SLYT convention arose?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 6:53 AM on April 5


The convention of labeling youtube videos (not "slyt", which happened much later) began on this site before MetaTalk existed. We didn't have this place to hash things out then, nor did we have somewhere people could go to publicly complain about posts on the site. That happened in threads on the Blue, causing what we now consider derails. So people started labeling their posts that contained autoplaying videos to either be polite, or to entice people to click on something that would be more than a text article, or perhaps out of hope that other mefites wouldn't complain in threads about them. Possibly mostly the latter.

The SLYT convention happened much later, mostly because people had started complaining in threads and metatalk that a single youtube video made for a thin post that didn't meet Metafilter's standards.

Never mind that we're talking about a site whose first post was of pictures of scanned cat butts... we have standards, dammit. :)

Matt used to be quite vocal about not liking acronyms (like OP, FPP, SLYT, etc.,) because he felt that in-jokes would make the site feel unwelcome to outsiders. He lost that battle.

People have been complaining that posts aren't "best of the web!" for years and years. And no matter how many times they're told by mods and other users that the phrase isn't a set-in-stone metric by which individual posts are supposed to be judged, they keep using it. People have been complaining about posts that link to sites like Buzzfeed, Twitter, YouTube, the New York Times and many, many, many other sites for ages. This post is part of a long tradition in that respect.

You're absolutely entitled to talk about how you feel about FB links, Kirth. Some people will probably agree, take the initiative and label their links, which is fine. Others won't and that's fine, too. As long as there's no expectation that your suggestion has to happen or that posters will get lectured if they don't include it, that seems perfectly reasonable.
posted by zarq at 9:28 AM on April 5 [6 favorites]


I have no such expectations. My response was to the assertion that "Similar discussions in the past have always gone the same way," from someone who also claims that "There's nothing to do but shrug and move on." Your history lesson WRT the origins of SLYT is not really addressing the validity of those claims. I understand that you see no problem with not identifying links that exclude sets of people, sets that do not happen to include you. Maybe there's nothing for you to do but shrug and move on.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 9:48 AM on April 5

You're absolutely entitled to talk about how you feel about FB links, Kirth. Some people will probably agree, take the initiative and label their links, which is fine. Others won't and that's fine, too. As long as there's no expectation that your suggestion has to happen or that posters will get lectured if they don't include it, that seems perfectly reasonable.
I agree that, generally, community standards work better when they arise organically out of the community. Sometimes, though, it's constructive to curate, lead and otherwise excecise vision to shape the future. Moderation is, for an example, a large part of which this place is useful and enjoyable. Crowdsourced moderation and meta-moderation is a large part of why places like /. Are no longer so.

I think that, in the not too distant future, the culture at large will look back upon these times with a wary eye. There is much to glance askew at and there is always a good-fight-to-fight. This particular pony, and my (though I don't think I'm alone here) is hardly top of the heap but it is addressable. We have the opportunity to take small stands in the face of the feudaliszation of a once (kinda-sorta) democratic internet. 'The web' is naught but a collection of standards, protocols and conventions that enough producers, publishers and clients agree upon. This could be a place that might take a stand just this side of neutral on the topic of walled gardens harvesting people for profit whilst masquerading as 'The web'.

When a front page post is thin, it would be nice to know if that one link Is going to be a link in a chain or a strand in a web.
posted by mce at 10:26 AM on April 5 [1 favorite]


I have no such expectations.

Good to hear.

Except you then go on to say "I understand that you see no problem with not identifying links that exclude sets of people, sets that do not happen to include you."

Which seems very much like an expectation on your part.

My response was to the assertion that "Similar discussions in the past have always gone the same way," from someone who also claims that "There's nothing to do but shrug and move on." Your history lesson WRT the origins of SLYT is not really addressing the validity of those claims.

My "history lesson" was a response to you asking, "Is that how the SLYT convention arose?" It wasn't intended to do anything other than answer that. I'm not taking sides between you and Dysk in this discussion. I've already voiced my opinion about what you're proposing. Also said your request was reasonable.

I understand that you see no problem with not identifying links that exclude sets of people, sets that do not happen to include you. Maybe there's nothing for you to do but shrug and move on.

Again, I'm not taking sides between you and Dysk.

You are not being "excluded." You're making a choice not to follow links to facebook and asking people to help you identify them. That's totally fine. But justified or not, your desire to avoid links to facebook is voluntary. Link destinations are already easily identifiable for most people who care. It takes virtually no effort to either mouse over or hold a link to determine where it goes. I did so for years on an old crappy phone that didn't handle certain content well. Is it more convenient to have people label links? Sure. Ask away! But if they don't, there are other options.

Oh, and for whatever it's worth, I already label some links in my posts, keep an eye on and mention youtube video restrictions, and even warn when a link's content may be disturbing or triggering.

None of that has anything to do with whether or not I'm personally affected by what I'm posting.
posted by zarq at 10:59 AM on April 5 [9 favorites]


I personally wish that everyone would get rid of the [SL###] tags, they're just annoying insider noise unless it's automated enforced site feature.

You can scroll through recent posts and find SL## posts that aren't tagged, so what's the point? Depending on the poster to identify the various labyrinths of paywalls, login-walls and region-locked content is just doomed to continual failure. On top of that they have to have been a member long enough to get the unwritten rule of doing it at all.

I mean, just scrolling through [Multi-Link Bunny Videos], [Obs/Guardian], [Chromatic Aberration Everywhere], [q-bio.NC], (SLNYT..., [NYT], [Teaser Trailer] it's all either inside jokey or noise.

Filthy Light Thief's idea for [Tw], [Fb], [PW], [PDF], [File] and all the other [NYT], [WaPo] is great if it's a computer doing the tagging, but just extra noise if not. If it's a computer doing the tagging, just please create a preference to turn it off.
posted by Static Vagabond at 11:24 AM on April 5


Just for fun...

.post a[href*='facebook.']:after { content: ' [FB]'; }

That throws the text " [FB]" after every facebook link, although the text is part of the link, which doesn't look great. The upside is you can indicate a lot of common "difficult" sources this way, with just a few lines of CSS and no additional HTML payload.

If you want the text to look better and be unlinked, you throw an extra (empty) span immediately after each link (when you're running through the same code that annotates youtube links), and do...

.post a[href*='facebook.'] + span:before { content: ' [FB]'; }
posted by davejay at 12:06 PM on April 5 [1 favorite]


You are not being "excluded."

I am being excluded from the content of FB pages, because of their popups. I do not think it should be on me to mouseover every link on the site in case it goes to some exclusive party. It would also take "virtually no effort" to join FB, but I won't do that, either.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 12:17 PM on April 5


Why are people still annoyed by PDFs? Chrome handles them nicely; do other browsers not? Are they being downloaded instead of displayed, in some browsers?
posted by thelonius at 12:17 PM on April 5 [1 favorite]


Why are people still annoyed by PDFs?

Mobile.
posted by lalex at 12:35 PM on April 5 [3 favorites]


I am being excluded from the content of FB pages

You are choosing not to read things on FB pages. That's not the same as being "excluded".

Hey, I'm also a Facebook-resister and often nope out of things if FB is the only way to access them. But in a situation like MetaFilter, where a post is effectively somebody saying "here's an interesting thing if you want to look at it", casting the fact that others don't have the same feelings about certain websites that you do as "exclusion" is unrealistic and makes it seem like you expect everything here to be tailored for your preferences.
posted by Lexica at 12:37 PM on April 5 [17 favorites]


Closed platform
posted by Mr. Yuck at 12:56 PM on April 5


The "splash page or annoying window" are actually my own issue. I have no qualm with Facebook, but WaPo, NYt, and most other magazines I do - because of that splash page or annoying window, which actually does not go away.

Although even worse are the pages that recognize I've got an ad blocker and throw up a page blocker begging me to whitelist them before I can view the content.


I'm not enthused about it either, but this is like 40% of mainstream web content at this point, like it or not. I don't think it's tenable to remove those links from MeFi, nor warn people preemptively about every possible splash page or adblocker message. If there's an unobtrusive solution I'm all ears, but I can't think of one.
posted by naju at 1:10 PM on April 5


Maybe posters could warn us private persons that we'd be wasting our time clicking on the link?

I would say sure to this, but I'm unlikely to post Facebook stuff since I'm not on it either. I'm another person who doesn't have a Facebook account. In the future I guess I could stay out of MetaTalks about Facebooks, but I won't do it today. Well, hope this helped. I'll see you guys all later.
posted by Greg Nog at 1:20 PM on April 5 [1 favorite]


If there's an unobtrusive solution I'm all ears, but I can't think of one.

Don't click links. :D

Or you could try an ad-blocker blocker filter.
posted by zarq at 1:21 PM on April 5 [5 favorites]


Just added this filter to my adblocker, thanks zarq!
posted by naju at 1:24 PM on April 5


You're very welcome!
posted by zarq at 1:42 PM on April 5


You are choosing not to read things on FB pages. That's not the same as being "excluded".

You're mistaken. The choice I made was to not join Facebook. Because of that choice, and their huge popup urging me to join, I can't see useful amounts of content on FB pages. Please explain how that is different from me being excluded.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 1:56 PM on April 5


Everyone I’ve used Google to solve the problem: “How to Block the Log In / Sign Up Popup on Facebook”
posted by Going To Maine at 2:04 PM on April 5


Oh oops that filter doesn’t work abort abort everyone back into the thread.
posted by Going To Maine at 2:06 PM on April 5


Facebook isn't saying "Oh, we're a private club, and you can't come in." They'd be delighted to have you. You're looking at their TOS and practices and whatnot and saying "I choose not to be a member of your club." You're not being excluded. You're welcome to join and view the content. You choose not to because you consider the price of entry to be too high. That's a perfectly valid choice to make, but it's your choice, not Facebook's or Metafilter's or that of a poster who chooses to post a link to FB.

Compare and contrast with links to, say, Hulu or the BBC Player that actively exclude people outside their Geographic target region. The people who can't see those links are excluded -- they would have to circumvent the rules of the site to be allowed to see the content.
posted by jacquilynne at 2:12 PM on April 5 [9 favorites]


If content is Facebook-members-only, that's enough of a wall that it would be a problem (like maybe a deletion) here. Paywalled content, membership walls, those are typically not ok in a post.

I think we're talking about content that's on Facebook but not restricted to facebook-members-only.... it's just that Facebook chooses to put up that very annoying hassle-screen to people who aren't logged in. I agree that's a crummy practice on their part, and I understand why Kirth Gerson finds it to be annoying and something he'd appreciate a heads-up about.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 2:24 PM on April 5 [4 favorites]


Which means he's actually even less excluded.
posted by jacquilynne at 2:33 PM on April 5 [1 favorite]


LobsterMitten: I agree that's a crummy practice on their part, and I understand why Keith Gerson finds it to be annoying and something he'd appreciate a heads-up about.

Which is fine, but he's also accusing mefites who don't want to give him that heads-up of not giving a shit that he and others like him are being "excluded."

He's not being excluded. He's making a choice.
posted by zarq at 2:37 PM on April 5 [4 favorites]


I'm trying to bring us back around to the original framing of this post, which didn't bog down into the "excluded" language.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 2:44 PM on April 5 [3 favorites]


The choice I made was to not join Facebook.

Oh hey, me too! Like I said before.

I still reject your premise. Facebook pages that are visible only to Facebook members would be a problem, as LM indicates. But if the problem is that you're unwilling to click the "not now" button to hide the popup on a publicly-visible page, I don't have much sympathy, despite apparently otherwise being in the same boat as you.
posted by Lexica at 3:06 PM on April 5 [1 favorite]


SLGB
SLMO
SLRR
posted by Nanukthedog at 3:13 PM on April 5 [1 favorite]


I'm trying to bring us back around to the original framing of this post, which didn't bog down into the "excluded" language.

I understand that. Letting go of it is pretty much in the OP's court at this point.
posted by zarq at 3:25 PM on April 5


thelonius: "Why are people still annoyed by PDFs? Chrome handles them nicely; do other browsers not? Are they being downloaded instead of displayed, in some browsers?"

Well just like deep links to video PDFs can be huge with either embedded photos or just of war and peace proportions. So those of use on dialup or satellite internet or low volume metered accounts appreciate the warning.
posted by Mitheral at 3:49 PM on April 5 [3 favorites]


Facebook, in its majesty, forbids both members and non-members from going unmolested by pop-ups when they aren't logged in.
posted by XMLicious at 6:35 PM on April 5


those of use on dialup or satellite internet or low volume metered accounts appreciate the warning.

25% of the US doesn't have broadband at home. Many people have metered data plans on their phones. Large mystery PDFs don't often gracefully resize for a small phone screen (unlike responsive websites) and so are less optimal for linking. I'm not wild about many Facebook posts and would probably push back if I saw more of them, but I'll sometimes tweet them out if they're really worthwhile where it's clearer to people what they're clicking on.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 6:51 PM on April 5 [1 favorite]


Yes, if there can be an unobtrusive way of marking this kind of content, I'm all for it. I personally can't close the tab quick enough when I come across a that stupid NSAbook overlay.

Incidentally, I would say that the sidetracking onto the [SL more letters] topic is probably worth addressing in a separate meta.
posted by Juso No Thankyou at 7:12 AM on April 6


For all the love of merciful grodd, could Metafilter please please please implement a CSS solution like what davejay has shared so we can end these posts and the unindicated PDF/NYT/Hulu link sibling reports?

There have surely been a dozen of these metatalks by now and if there can be customizable themes I don't see why this sort of option can't be in profiles too. From a coding perspective it's little more than a minor repurposing of the YouTube & Vimeo video inline? option which toggles another inline alteration. You can even use the hierarchy to limit it to the post body or not. Copy it a second time to indicate PDFs and other file links.

If you want to gussy it up past the plain text you can use the Font Awesome stuff to put a little logo next to stuff. If the 120k load space is too big there's generators to slim it down to just the desired icons.
posted by phearlez at 1:59 PM on April 6


Would it be possible to have a limited series of check boxes (FB, YT, NYT, etc.) on the posting page that would add those as tags? That way, at least people could filter out those kinds of posts without relying on poster's memory or inclination. (I think NSFW and content warnings should be encouraged, fwiw.)

zarq: Turn on your YouTube inline preview in preferences and then look at this post of mine. Specifically, the first sentence below the fold. It has 12 youtube links in it.

Now this is an extreme case, but that one sentence is all but unreadable with those preview icons.


I agree, but that was also from 2010(!) when creative linking, like breaking up words or linking individual letters was popular. By today's standards, that sentence would (probably) have three fewer icons. But I do find myself reworking posts so that they are readable and succinct without being too long for the front page, while helping people who need warnings. (That said, other than this specific example sentence, I think zarq's posts are some of the best of MetaFilter.)

I do think we've reached a tipping point, though, where there are now enough types of problem content that labeling everything is impractical.
posted by Room 641-A at 2:42 PM on April 6


But if the problem is that you're unwilling to click the "not now" button to hide the popup on a publicly-visible page, I don't have much sympathy, despite apparently otherwise being in the same boat as you.

Huh. In my experience clicking that just moves the pop up a little bit out of the way, where's it's still hard or impossible to read the page.
posted by bongo_x at 3:35 PM on April 6


I've also always been confused by the "SL" part of those tags. Why do we need to know it's a single link, wouldn't you assume that? What would a multi-link link look like?
posted by bongo_x at 3:36 PM on April 6


At the time that SLYT, SLNYT, et al were establishing themselves, there was a contingent of posters who felt strongly that a single link to a piece of content on a site that was often linked was really too thin to make a good post. This was a way to let those people know that's all there was to this particular post, so they shouldn't expect anything meatier and if they really hated them, they should just move on.
posted by jacquilynne at 4:28 PM on April 6 [2 favorites]


zarq: Turn on your YouTube inline preview in preferences and then look at this post of mine. Specifically, the first sentence below the fold. It has 12 youtube links in it.

Now this is an extreme case, but that one sentence is all but unreadable with those preview icons.


All the better reason to make it a configurable option. Folks who are het up that they might click a link and end up somewhere that gives them internet cooties can live with the mass of icons or they can find some other way to avoid the Zuck. If they don't like it they can decide what they like least. But either way we no longer have to hear about it.

Would it be possible to have a limited series of check boxes (FB, YT, NYT, etc.) on the posting page that would add those as tags? That way, at least people could filter out those kinds of posts without relying on poster's memory or inclination.

Still requires active effort which means it won't always happen. Why mess with it if it only half solves the problem and leaves people still unsatisfied and therefore leads to more complaints?
posted by phearlez at 5:20 PM on April 6


Number one MetaFilter pet peeve:

Anyone else's...

Eschew Single Link Excessively Easily Peeved People, Please, OK ?
posted by y2karl at 8:18 AM on April 8


I agree, but that was also from 2010(!) when creative linking, like breaking up words or linking individual letters was popular

You can pry creative linking from my cold, dead hands.
posted by Going To Maine at 10:30 AM on April 8


And I just made a post with six video links and two regular links, so I take back my previous comment.
posted by Room 641-A at 3:31 PM on April 8


The thing I don't like about F******k links is the underlying implication that "we're all on F*******k" and labeling them will dispel that feeling. In actuality, I am on it (though with a pseudonym) and use my account mainly to view others' links. I don't know why more people don't do this and hope it's not because they tell you you have to use your real name, because doing what I'm told not to is an important extra benefit.
posted by Obscure Reference at 8:41 AM on April 9 [1 favorite]


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