Reacting to threads and comments September 12, 2017 8:23 AM   Subscribe

A modest pony request.

If I am recalling correctly, the idea behind favouriting was akin to a bookmark feature so that users could easily return to noteworthy mefi posts and comments at a later date. There were some who wanted upvote/downvote buttons akin to other sites we probably don't need to mention, but this was not considered right for the site, particularly in that downvoting is not really a very positive feature for our community.

However, it seems obvious that favourites are most commonly used as if they are a method for upvoting rather than bookmarking, and this is not wrong in my opinion as it's a very human thing to want to react to content without necessarily having anything in particular to say about it other than [this is good].

My idea is certainly not to replace the favouriting feature, because I do also think it's useful for bookmarking content. I have been using discord a lot recently though, and a feature I really enjoy is being able to react to comments in text channels with a range of emotes which are then added to the comment with a count for each instance of each emote.

I believe if the range of emotes is chosen sensibly this will not become a feature that could be used to downvote content, but rather a way to increase our range of reactions in a way that more naturally allows us to express emotion, additionally repurposing the favouriting feature as a way to bookmark content separately from emotional reaction.
posted by walrus to Feature Requests at 8:23 AM (146 comments total)

I sympathize with the impulse here, to reduce the ambiguity of favorites and to give people more ways to react, but having a menu of pre-set emoji or emoticon reactions isn't something we've been considering really. This is one of those "the system is imperfect and that's ok" areas, to me. The basic line about favorites has been unchanged for a long time: people can use them as approval or as bookmarks or however they want, and should interpret them with appropriate uncertainty (i.e. not interpret someone's favoriting a comment as necessarily meaning they endorse that comment). It's fine for folks to discuss the idea here, though.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 8:29 AM on September 12 [21 favorites]


๐Ÿ˜
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 8:30 AM on September 12 [10 favorites]


but having a menu of pre-set emoji or emoticon reactions isn't something we've been considering really.

:-(
posted by bondcliff at 8:30 AM on September 12 [8 favorites]


+1 for keeping nasty emoji and other such debris off of my lawn!
posted by thelonius at 8:33 AM on September 12 [34 favorites]


I have been using discord a lot recently though, and a feature I really enjoy is being able to react to comments in text channels with a range of emotes which are then added to the comment with a count for each instance of each emote.

The horror.

The horror.
posted by zarq at 8:34 AM on September 12 [11 favorites]


๐Ÿคก๐Ÿค–๐Ÿ‘ฝ๐ŸŽƒ๐Ÿคฆโ€
posted by octobersurprise at 8:35 AM on September 12 [4 favorites]


When Facebook added a range of reactions it was difficult because you could no longer 'like' a post you agreed with, you had to figure out if it made you happy or angry it whatnot. I don't want to have to figure out the nuances of agreement, happiness, or outrage here; knowing there's something in the comment or post that I want to find again is enough for me.
posted by Margalo Epps at 8:43 AM on September 12 [13 favorites]


I'm with LM in both appreciating the intent behind the suggestion and not seeing this as something we're gonna pursue.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:59 AM on September 12 [5 favorites]


I sympathize with the impulse here, to reduce the ambiguity of favorites and to give people more ways to react, but having a menu of pre-set emoji or emoticon reactions isn't something we've been considering really.

:Thankful flower:
posted by drezdn at 9:05 AM on September 12 [4 favorites]


i've always felt that reacts are more for advertisers & the platform than for users, so i'm glad mefi isn't going down this route <3
posted by yaymukund at 9:06 AM on September 12 [2 favorites]


๐Ÿฅ”๐Ÿฅ”๐Ÿฅ”๐Ÿฅ”๐Ÿฅ”
posted by Barack Spinoza at 9:06 AM on September 12


Can we retire this question from MetaTalk?
posted by fluttering hellfire at 9:07 AM on September 12 [3 favorites]


The bread and butter of this site is ads/impressions, etc, and as long as people post and reload in order to see how many people liked their snarky comment the site will remain the same.

It was the policy of the old owner, and as stated above, it is the policy of the new owner.
posted by terrapin at 9:19 AM on September 12


> The bread and butter of this site is ads/impressions, etc, and as long as people post and reload in order to see how many people liked their snarky comment the site will remain the same.

I don't remember the numbers, but I remember reading that a majority of the site's ad revenue comes from AskMe, where snark is pretty much verboten.
posted by tonycpsu at 9:32 AM on September 12 [7 favorites]


There's a very simple way to make this happen: mathowie should convince Slack to buy MetaFilter.
posted by teraflop at 9:34 AM on September 12 [3 favorites]


The ambiguity of favorites is a feature, not a bug.
posted by flabdablet at 9:42 AM on September 12 [24 favorites]


Related: as a Canadian, I demand that the spelling of โ€œfavoriteโ€ be corrected to the proper British/Canadian way of โ€œfavouriteโ€!!
posted by Fizz at 9:47 AM on September 12 [18 favorites]


Fizz - Jessamyn has you covered
posted by namewithoutwords at 9:50 AM on September 12 [8 favorites]


๐Ÿ’ฉ
posted by alby at 9:50 AM on September 12 [1 favorite]


Thanks @namewithoutwords. :)
posted by Fizz at 9:51 AM on September 12


I like the way Techdirt handles this. They have 2 options, funny and insightful, because they wanted to promote both humorous and insightful comments. It seems to work well for them.
posted by COD at 9:59 AM on September 12 [2 favorites]


Nice, but my humor is so insightful that it would be too confusing for folks to choose.

(this is not generally true)
posted by MCMikeNamara at 10:03 AM on September 12 [16 favorites]


It would still be hard to interpret. I would never be able to tell if all the fuck emojis on my comments are supposed to mean, "No, fuck you!" or "That's so perfect I want to fuck it."
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 10:07 AM on September 12 [4 favorites]


ยฏ\_(ใƒ„)_/ยฏ
posted by standardasparagus at 10:07 AM on September 12 [4 favorites]


Where's the plate of beans emoji?
posted by ODiV at 10:07 AM on September 12


Also, I appreciate this idea because I dislike it when favourites get dragged into a conversation. Then again if MeFi went ahead with it, then there would just be more to drag into the conversation, so probably not great in the long run.
posted by ODiV at 10:09 AM on September 12


The bread and butter of this site is ads/impressions, etc, and as long as people post and reload in order to see how many people liked their snarky comment the site will remain the same.

Wrong, and weirdly uncharitable in the process.

If you want to go with a really simplistic take, the bread and butter of this site is ad impressions by non-member google search traffic on the Ask MetaFilter archives. The jam and the bacon are Amazon referral purchases also largely from drive-by non-member traffic and direct giving by members of the site.

To the extent that people post and reload to see how many people liked their snarky comments, they are not generating revenue in the process but rather driving up server costs. Thankfully by a pretty marginal amount in a fairly buyer-friendly market for web hosting services, but it is exactly backwards to view favorites as somehow a cynical cash-generating ploy.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:14 AM on September 12 [30 favorites]


โ˜โ˜โ˜โ˜โ˜โ˜ but โ˜โ˜โ˜ and if โ˜โ˜โ˜โ˜โ˜โ˜โ˜โ˜ then obviously we should encourage โ˜โ˜โ˜โ˜โ˜       โ˜โ˜โ˜โ˜
posted by sammyo at 10:15 AM on September 12 [3 favorites]


the bread and butter of this site is ad impressions by non-member google search traffic on the Ask MetaFilter archives. The jam and the bacon are Amazon referral purchases also largely from drive-by non-member traffic

and direct giving by members of the site.


Why did direct giving not get a food metaphor? What are we: chopped liver?*

*Author's note: I actually like chopped liver.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 10:19 AM on September 12 [1 favorite]


No, Amazon is the jam, direct giving is the bacon.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:19 AM on September 12 [8 favorites]


I like you, but you can't have any of my bacon.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 10:20 AM on September 12 [4 favorites]


cortex: "To the extent that people post and reload to see how many people liked their snarky comments, they are not generating revenue in the process but rather driving up server costs."

Damn. Now I can no longer use that as my excuse. ("No, I was just doing my part to increase MeFi's pageviews, not desperately reloading to see my favorites count.")
posted by chavenet at 10:34 AM on September 12


cortex: "but it is exactly backwards to view favorites as somehow a cynical cash-generating ploy."

Facts never get in the way of people's conspiracy theories about Metafilter.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:10 AM on September 12 [1 favorite]


This is actually a rather immodest pony.
posted by GenjiandProust at 12:01 PM on September 12


This is actually a rather immodest pony.

Well I don't think Swift's proposal was as modest as it was cracked up to be either but I was rather hoping someone would get the reference.
posted by walrus at 12:08 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


I've said it before, I'll say it again -- "noted" is preferable to "favorited" because it contains no value judgement, and I demand this change now ... or else I'll just keep on doing what I've been doing.
posted by philip-random at 12:28 PM on September 12 [6 favorites]


Noted.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 12:29 PM on September 12 [15 favorites]


I know, just surface all of the flag data. There's no way that can go wrong.
posted by ODiV at 12:31 PM on September 12


To the extent that people post and reload to see how many people liked their snarky comments, they are not generating revenue in the process but rather driving up server costs.

I would gladly pay you next week for a favorite today. ๐ŸŽ…๐Ÿป๐Ÿ”ฎ๐Ÿ‘ป๐Ÿ™Œ
posted by octobersurprise at 12:38 PM on September 12


I for one have had enough of these brazen ponies, and demand a feature that lets users shame, clothe, intimidate, or restrain them as necessary.
posted by Spathe Cadet at 12:43 PM on September 12


Every time you use an emoji, a word disappears from the OED forever.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 12:50 PM on September 12 [18 favorites]


Is the word "moist"? Cause fuck that word.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 12:53 PM on September 12 [9 favorites]


If you need to do more than +1 something... I really do like that notion in other formats, but here? Here, I think a good general principle is: Use your words. I don't think using it as a +1 instead of a bookmark is inappropriate because bookmarks are already a well-used feature of every web browser that I know of.
posted by Sequence at 12:54 PM on September 12


( อกยฐ อœส– อกยฐ)
posted by Freelance Demiurge at 12:55 PM on September 12 [2 favorites]


It is incredibly possible to love the clever use of emoji to communicate and very much not want to see them at MetaFilter.

Ask me how I know ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ’ฏ๐Ÿ˜˜๐ŸŽฏ
posted by MCMikeNamara at 12:56 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


>This is actually a rather immodest pony.

Well I don't think Swift's proposal was as modest as it was cracked up to be either but I was rather hoping someone would get the reference.


Now my takeaway is that you want cortex to eat an Irish baby...
posted by GenjiandProust at 12:59 PM on September 12 [3 favorites]


a feature I really enjoy is being able to react to comments in text channels with a range of emotes

A feature I really enjoy is that people react to comments in text channels with a range of words. This pony should be sent to the knackers.
posted by ActingTheGoat at 1:00 PM on September 12 [4 favorites]


having a menu of pre-set emoji or emoticon reactions isn't something we've been considering really

(โ•ฏยฐโ–กยฐ๏ผ‰โ•ฏ๏ธต โ”ปโ”โ”ป
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 1:00 PM on September 12 [2 favorites]


I for one have had enough of these brazen ponies, and demand a feature that lets users shame, clothe, intimidate, or restrain them as necessary.

๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ

Whoa! Whoa! Stampede!
posted by octobersurprise at 1:03 PM on September 12 [5 favorites]


Mmmm! Brazed ponies! Aaaaaahhhh!
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 1:05 PM on September 12


Cortex's MetaFilter sandwich consists of only bread, butter, jam, and bacon....

These are my people.
posted by Weeping_angel at 1:17 PM on September 12 [5 favorites]


Also, it's bacon jam. And bacon butter. And the bread is actually a donut.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 1:20 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


No, Amazon is the jam, direct giving is the bacon.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:19 PM on September 12


I was, seriously, just about to ask which was which. Thanks for answering.

๐Ÿ˜
posted by soundguy99 at 1:23 PM on September 12


Jam bacon? Why, sure! *jams bacon in face holes*
posted by loquacious at 1:29 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


bread, butter, jam, and bacon....

Needs ๐Ÿฅœ + butter, ๐ŸŒ, and an Elvis emoji ๐Ÿค˜
posted by octobersurprise at 1:49 PM on September 12


Vote #1 quidnunc kid, and I will replace the tired and old "favourite" button with new, highly-innovative MeFi interaction mechanism that will leverage tomorrow's paradigm disruptions today! Instead of "favourites", we'll have "moists", and users will be able to give 100 moists a day to individual comments and posts. And every time you moist a post or comment, the website will auto-play a recording of 100 people screaming: MOIST!!! Moist this comment if you agree! [๐Ÿ’ฆ]
posted by the quidnunc kid at 2:40 PM on September 12 [49 favorites]


i've always felt that reacts are more for advertisers & the platform than for users, so i'm glad mefi isn't going down this route <3

don't you want mefi to be financially sustainable? do you think cortex's monocle just polishes itself?
posted by entropicamericana at 2:40 PM on September 12


Every chance it gets.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 2:43 PM on September 12 [2 favorites]


Moist this comment if you agree!

Moisten. Moistly. With moist noises.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 2:59 PM on September 12 [6 favorites]


So I DO happen to think emoji reactions are a pretty nice emergent internet convention to communicate active listeningโ€”they offer an expansive but fairly standardized emotional vocabulary and contain enough semantic content to stand in for the vocabulary of facial expressions and short utterances that communicate "I'm listening to and processing what you're saying."

BUT, in terms of the basic model of how people interact with the site, Metafilter feels kind of feature-complete. There's no way you can introduce Slack/Discord-style emoji reactions to comments without the ancient, opinionated user base pitching an absolute fucking fit. (Recall the hue an cry over the innocuous addition of post titles to the front page, or how many people continue to use the old, wildly inferior layout/style.)

Anyway though let's pull some strings and get a paid-up slack for the whole userbase. The bots, comrades. Think of the bots
posted by Sokka shot first at 3:03 PM on September 12 [4 favorites]


old, wildly inferior layout/style

Seems like you've left some work unfinished there in that assertion.
posted by Chrysostom at 3:06 PM on September 12 [4 favorites]


[Turn favorites off]
posted by clavdivs at 3:35 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


FINALLY my opportunity to call out ThePinkSuperhero's weird use of favoriting in AskMe!

TPS: You have the most quirky favoriting of anyone on this site! Is the idea that you temporarily bookmark a question you wan to read later, then delete it? I must know your methodology here! I've seriously almost posted a MetaTalk about it. Please reveal!
posted by latkes at 4:16 PM on September 12 [3 favorites]


I like the way Techdirt handles this. They have 2 options, funny and insightful, because they wanted to promote both humorous and insightful comments. It seems to work well for them.

CmdrTaco sheds a single tear.
posted by Space Coyote at 4:22 PM on September 12 [6 favorites]


Anyway though let's pull some strings and get a paid-up slack for the whole userbase.

Buddy, they don't even let me f—

That is to say we pay retail for the admin slack team already, so whatever strings Matt has access to aren't pulling anywhere hard enough to pick up another several thousand accounts freebie style.
posted by cortex (staff) at 5:34 PM on September 12 [2 favorites]


FINALLY my opportunity to call out ThePinkSuperhero's weird use of favoriting in AskMe!

TPS: You have the most quirky favoriting of anyone on this site! Is the idea that you temporarily bookmark a question you wan to read later, then delete it? I must know your methodology here! I've seriously almost posted a MetaTalk about it. Please reveal!


I thought this was pretty common? I feel like this one gets mentioned in almost every "let's change how favorites work" meta.
posted by curious nu at 5:42 PM on September 12


TPS: You have the most quirky favoriting of anyone on this site! Is the idea that you temporarily bookmark a question you wan to read later, then delete it? I must know your methodology here! I've seriously almost posted a MetaTalk about it. Please reveal!

You are not the first to notice, I've gotten some MeMails! I'm honestly surprised anyone notices.

You are correct that I most often use favorites on posts/questions* as bookmarks, following those posts on the "My Favorites" tab, and then removing the favorite when I am done following the thread. I understand that many people would use the "Recent Activity" function for that, but if I've got the history correct, that's a function that wasn't around until 2015. I've been using favorites this way for much longer than that- favorites began in 2006 (note mathowie's description: Think of favorites as an internal bookmark system, a way to keep a list of the good questions, great comments, or interesting ideas you've found here.), and I'm not sure when the "My Favorites" tab came around, but it's been a long time.

tl; dr- I've been doing it this way forever, it works for me, and I hate change. I still love You if I've given and taken away a favorite from you.

*I use favorites on comments to mark things that delight me, and then occasionally I read through them all until I'm smiling so hard my face hurts squeeeeeeeee
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 5:46 PM on September 12 [10 favorites]


If I am recalling correctly, the idea behind favouriting was akin to a bookmark feature so that users could easily return to noteworthy mefi posts and comments at a later date.

No-one has ever used them for this in the history of the site. That's just the polite handkerchief behind which we hide the real reason for favourites, which is as a placeholder for our own ravenous self-regard.

And, based on the amount of dopamine I get from clicking my profile link every day or two, (clicks link, smiles blearily) they do a great job.
posted by Sebmojo at 5:46 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


No-one has ever used them for this in the history of the site...except for the person who commented prior to you.

Also, I memailed TPS about the unfavoriting thing years ago, and got the same story.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:07 PM on September 12 [4 favorites]


based on the amount of dopamine I get from clicking my profile link every day or two

holy shit where you find the self-restraint
posted by entropicamericana at 6:19 PM on September 12 [7 favorites]


No-one has ever used them for this in the history of the site...except for the person who commented prior to you.

ThePinksuperhero is the exception that proves the rule.
posted by Sebmojo at 6:27 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


(I also use them that way much of the time.)
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:41 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


That was pretty much like when Marshall McLuhan shows up in Annie Hall.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:08 PM on September 12 [3 favorites]


No-one has ever used them for this in the history of the site

I do. But I use them for many things.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 7:28 PM on September 12 [2 favorites]


๐Ÿ™ƒ
posted by fedward at 7:40 PM on September 12


#๏ธโƒฃ1๏ธโƒฃ๐Ÿ—ฃ๐Ÿ‘ฆ๐Ÿ
posted by rodlymight at 8:19 PM on September 12


perhaps we will see emoji for 24 hours or so at the beginning of April next year?
posted by QuakerMel at 8:31 PM on September 12


And when you saw that you had only one favorite, it was because ThePinkSuperhero had finished the thread and taken the other one away forever. Pleasant dreams.
posted by rhizome at 10:51 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


It's possible I'm overthinking this, but my problem with responding to online content with reaction-emoji is that there are many cases when it is unclear what the object of my reaction will be considered to be. If a person quotes thing A and adds commentary B, there's ambiguity as to whether my reaction is intended towards A or B. Maybe people selected the Angry icon because A is outrageous. Maybe they selected it because B is a really inappropriate reaction to A.
posted by Jpfed at 11:39 PM on September 12 [1 favorite]


Here, I think a good general principle is: Use your words.

Indeed.

The concerns of people with difficulty coming to grips with this idea have already been adequately addressed by elizardbits.
posted by flabdablet at 12:19 AM on September 13 [4 favorites]


This pony is the feature request equivalent of a red shirt TV extra. Die, pony, die.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:44 AM on September 13


I tend to think of emoji/emoticons as having a particular quick-take function. In Discord, Slack, texting and even Twitter I guess, there's a heavy bias towards reactions and soundbite updates. If an emoji is worth a dozen words or 140 characters, it's a reasonable compromise because message precision is often less important than the keep-in-touch nature of live chat. Discord's and Slack's emoji reactions are a way to condense that even further, letting a dozen people agree that thing you said is worth many ๐Ÿ‘ without having to clutter the channel with half a screen's worth of pictograms. Since Discord, Slack etc. are often used as supplemental communications, participating solely in emoji is weird but not alienating because people are also communicating with you in person at the office or in other contexts, or through in-game voice channels, or something else.

On web forums (many of them, anyway), messages are permanent and the site is the primary channel, not the sideband. Ideally you're more specific and precise in what you say, and should be willing to work towards clarity if other participants think they're misunderstanding you. It's not that quick takes are discouraged (in fact it's all a lot less informal and more free-flowing than I'm making this sound), but that you aren't treated as a full participant if the only thing you contribute to threads are glib reactions. You have to engage more fully or else you're a noisy lurker rather than a participant.
posted by ardgedee at 2:34 AM on September 13 [2 favorites]


Hmmm. I use favorites to say "I agree with this," but also "this made me laugh," "I noticed this," and "I want a better shot at finding this later." The "notice" use is mostly when someone responded to me and I want them to know I saw it but it doesn't make sense to reply in-thread/by memail. So, multi-use?
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:54 AM on September 13 [5 favorites]


Well, I just realized that while reading this thread, I completely skipped over any cluster of emojis I came to, because there isn't enough of my life left to waste any of it interpreting that shit. So this pony is not one I want.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:58 AM on September 13 [3 favorites]


In fact the system is oddly expressive. I'm not sure by what feat of pragmatics it was conveyed, but I'm sure I've had sarcastic favourites. I think I might have had a couple of pity favourites, come to think of it, and I've definitely been patronised with a favourite.
posted by Segundus at 4:56 AM on September 13 [1 favorite]


walrus: it's a very human thing to want to react to content without necessarily having anything in particular to say about it other than [this is good].

There is no reason on this moist green earth not to post exactly that if that's what you want to say.
posted by Too-Ticky at 4:59 AM on September 13


Moisten. Moistly. With moist noises.

And mouthfeel.
posted by middleclasstool at 5:02 AM on September 13


Kirth Gerson: "Well, I just realized that while reading this thread, I completely skipped over any cluster of emojis I came to, because there isn't enough of my life left to waste any of it interpreting that shit. So this pony is not one I want."

Thisthisthis. If I see multiple emoji in a row, my mind just shuts off. I find them almost literally unreadable.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:36 AM on September 13 [3 favorites]


Seems like you've left some work unfinished there in that assertion.

I mean this is off-topic but I started the fire so what the hell: The Modern theme makes site navigation & search available regardless of scroll position, makes tablet & phone browsing breathtakingly more pleasant and readable, lets you toggle between light and dark modes via the sidebar, and makes post and comment attribution more legible and accessible. Subjectively, it's also clean and spacious and contemporary-feeling without losing its fundamental Metafilteriness. I love love love it and have since day one.

To return vaguely to the topic: While I don't think inscrutable emoji reactions are a hill worth dying on, I do feel like it's worth calling the feature-completeness of Metafilter into question every once in a while, even just as a thought experiment. The world changes; the web changes. I feel like Fanfare came out of this thinking, and while I can't speak to its bottom-line effect in terms of making the site money or being a drag on moderator time, as a simple user of the site it feels like an unadulterated success to me.

I know MeFightClub exists, but it never quite stuck with me, and with Fanfare becoming my default "go see what people thought of the movie I just watched," I'm starting to want a counterpart there for video games. Yesterday I loaded up Fanfare vaguely wanting to check in on a conversation, and then I realized the conversation I wanted to check in on was Destiny 2, and there wasn't going to be a Fanfare for it. Which is fine! But it's also interesting that my first instinct was to go to Fanfare.

If Soundcloud were to go under for reals, I might make Mefi Music my default home for the kind of musical shitposting that now goes on SoundCloudโ€”and if I were to do that, I can imagine some ways I'd like to improve that experience.

The death of LiveJournal-style personal, access-controlled blogging still bums me out. Sometimes I daydream about whether some kind of MeFiJournal could that niche.

Anyway, the point is, Metafilter is special. I hope to see it continue to evolve while always remaining true to its best and most humane self.
posted by Sokka shot first at 8:27 AM on September 13 [1 favorite]


I mean this is off-topic but I started the fire so what the hell: The Modern theme makes site navigation & search available regardless of scroll position, makes tablet & phone browsing breathtakingly more pleasant and readable, lets you toggle between light and dark modes via the sidebar, and makes post and comment attribution more legible and accessible. Subjectively, it's also clean and spacious and contemporary-feeling without losing its fundamental Metafilteriness. I love love love it and have since day one.

I agree. If there was a green/yellow toggle, I might switch to Modren full-time. I do use it on my phone.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:07 AM on September 13 [1 favorite]


Favorites are sick of being used. And they aren't going to take it anymore.
posted by Roger Dodger at 9:44 AM on September 13 [1 favorite]


I read somewhere that a clash over emoji responses is what ultimately prompted the sale of the site.

it was the preview window
posted by ODiV at 10:33 AM on September 13


So my thoughts on this are thus:

Don't think emotes would add anything substantive.

However, I +do+ think there might be some benefit to surfacing the 'flagged as fantastic' feature more. Currently the [!] menu is a dropdown of ways to report content as requiring moderator attention mostly within the context of some part of it being problematic or negatively affecting the thread, EXCEPT the "fantastic comment" one.

I feel like making this more visible could address the goals of making favorites less vague for those to whom it is important, not breaking things for those who choose to use favorites in a different way, adding a little bit of a qualitative (though not comprehensive) group opinion of a comment (in a way thats true to the binary MeFi spirit), and separating out this element that is notably different from the other actions with which it is grouped.
posted by softlord at 10:45 AM on September 13 [2 favorites]


If I am recalling correctly, the idea behind favouriting was akin to a bookmark feature so that users could easily return to noteworthy mefi posts and comments at a later date.

I honestly wish I could divide between favorites and bookmarks. The election threads have made it impossible for me to ever find again anything I wanted to bookmark.
posted by corb at 10:49 AM on September 13 [1 favorite]


corb, I had some advice about that.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:12 AM on September 13


This would have made a great April 1 gag. Needs to have been lots Buzzfeedy though.
posted by bonehead at 11:12 AM on September 13


Just a reminder, you can always turn off favorites!

That way you'll have no idea what anyone is thinking. Unless they write a comment.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:29 AM on September 13


I use favorites as bookmarks, notes of agreement or endorsement of ideas, to denote laughter, to mark something particularly insightful, for shopping ideas, and on and on and on. For the practical uses, once I've done what I needed to do, I unbookmark the comment or thread. I'm sorry if this is injurious to some egos. It's not meant to be, but then, putting too much stock in your received favorites count is a mug's game, because you'll never actually know what they're there for.
posted by tzikeh at 11:32 AM on September 13 [2 favorites]


Half of emojis posted here don't work on chrome. Just from that there's a big usability problem.

If anything, the "flagged as fantastic" could be moved from flags into something like [+] [*] [!]. Maybe accounting them as +1 favourites anyway, but also displayed on a different place. Dunno.
posted by lmfsilva at 11:39 AM on September 13


I'm honestly surprised anyone notices.

Some people track their favorites by examining the number on their profile page, rather than using the Recent Favorites page as God mathowie cortex intended. This means they notice when they lose favorites, not just when they gain them.
posted by grouse at 12:12 PM on September 13 [2 favorites]


> Yesterday I loaded up Fanfare vaguely wanting to check in on a conversation, and then I realized the conversation I wanted to check in on was Destiny 2, and there wasn't going to be a Fanfare for it. Which is fine! But it's also interesting that my first instinct was to go to Fanfare.

I have zero interest in video games, but I don't see why they couldn't be added to Fanfare if people want them there.

*waits for cortex to patiently explain why it wouldn't make sense to add them to Fanfare*
posted by languagehat at 1:59 PM on September 13


โ˜ž Half of emojis posted here don't work on chrome.

Odd. What OS are you on?
posted by fedward at 2:03 PM on September 13


I'm super duper for adding video games to FanFare but we have more important stuff to do over there before expanding media types further.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:43 PM on September 13 [1 favorite]


How about splitting favourites into three different abstract shapes, so the semantics of favouriting can get really interesting.
posted by lucidium at 2:45 PM on September 13 [2 favorites]


If anything, the "flagged as fantastic" could be moved from flags

I'm not a particularly 'flaggy' person but pretty interface savvy having written some -- but it was a long time before I noticed this, it basically took a mis-flag and mod contact before it, ah, clicked.
posted by sammyo at 2:50 PM on September 13


Odd. What OS are you on?

Windows 7. I think it's related to font settings.
posted by lmfsilva at 2:56 PM on September 13


Some people track their favorites by examining the number on their profile page, rather than using the Recent Favorites page as God mathowie cortex intended. This means they notice when they lose favorites, not just when they gain them.

Is there a difference between the Recent Favorites page and the Activity From page other than the latter gives you "fuzzy," "popular" and "precise" sorting options?

Keeping track of favorites looks more complicated than ever.
posted by zarq at 2:57 PM on September 13


> How about splitting favourites into three different abstract shapes, so the semantics of favouriting can get really interesting.

Triangled!
posted by Spathe Cadet at 4:17 PM on September 13 [2 favorites]


Windows 7

There's your problem. Chrome's emoji support more or less needs Windows 10 or some workaround.
posted by fedward at 7:54 PM on September 13 [2 favorites]


Wait until Apple's new "Animoji" hit town.

And the bread is actually a donut.

So IHOP has been advertising "Donut French Toast" on my TV this summer.

Donut French Toast. ๐Ÿฉ
posted by spitbull at 4:20 AM on September 14


First I heard of Donut French Toast was yesterday, when they started throwing banners about it on the Waze app.

I have such mixed feelings... if it's just french toast with pink sugar glazing and sprinkles, fuck that shit. If it's some kind of actual hybrid, like a yeast-raised pastry coated in egg batter and pan-fried, they have my attention.

Since it's IHOP we're talking about though, it's probably option A except, somehow, even chintzier.
posted by ardgedee at 4:59 AM on September 14


1. Make or purchase a pound cake. Eat some of it, but not all.
2. Leave a couple slices out overnight so they get a bit dry (or dry them out in the oven).
3. Use them to make French toast.
4. Send me money because I just fixed your whole god damned life.
posted by middleclasstool at 5:15 AM on September 14 [2 favorites]


๐Ÿšซ
posted by quinndexter at 7:11 AM on September 14


LOL, I recently mentioned in the MeFi parents' facebook group (you want in? Just ask and we'll hook you up!) that I'd been spending so much time in there - where you can Heart and Sad Face and Angry Face any comment - and then I came in here and wanted to do the same.

I dunno. It'd be fun. It was neat to see my senator Al Franken announce on facebook his support for the #MedicareForAll and see the breakdown of likes vs Hearts vs Angry Face (current breakdown right this second: 38k likes, 7.9k hearts, 180 Angry Faces, 77 Wows, 58 Laughs and 19 Sad Faces). But then I already get sad when ThePinkSuperhero takes away a favorite (mostly because I get a jolt of happy when I see I even GOT a favorite from her), so maybe my poor fragile ego couldn't handle it.

Can you imagine the load times of those big political threads if everyone had the ability to post GIFs? LOL. I think I can smell the smoke from the server farm already...
posted by jillithd at 7:50 AM on September 14 [1 favorite]


so whatever strings Matt has access to aren't pulling anywhere hard enough to pick up another several thousand accounts freebie style

( โˆ™_โˆ™)
I think we should...
( โˆ™_โˆ™)>โŒโ– -โ– 
(โŒโ– _โ– )
...cut Matt some Slack
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 8:18 AM on September 14 [2 favorites]


Recall the hue an cry over the innocuous addition of post titles to the front page, or how many people continue to use the old, wildly inferior layout/style.

Them's fighting words
posted by grouse at 8:47 AM on September 14 [4 favorites]


how many people continue to use the old, wildly inferior layout/style.

And then the murders began.
posted by corb at 8:55 AM on September 14 [12 favorites]


the old, wildly inferior layout/style

I can read this because the old, wildly inferior style is text on a screen. I'm clearly doing something wrong and unfuturistic.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 9:57 AM on September 14 [5 favorites]


wildly inferior layout/style.

... cold dead hands ...
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 9:58 AM on September 14 [15 favorites]


the old, wildly inferior style is text on a screen

Ill-considered joking on my part notwithstanding, I FOR SURE respect differences of opinion regarding the themes. That said, I'm having trouble parsing this. In what way are both themes not...text on a screen...?
posted by Sokka shot first at 10:07 AM on September 14 [1 favorite]


(I'm seeing Sokka shot first's emoji stats as something like 500 angry faces and maybe 100 laughing faces. Modern Dark FTW)
posted by jillithd at 10:29 AM on September 14 [1 favorite]


In what way are both themes not...text on a screen...?

When you assumed that the theme you weren't using was shit, I guess.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 12:07 PM on September 14 [1 favorite]


(Recall the hue an cry over the innocuous addition of post titles to the front page, or how many people continue to use the old, wildly inferior layout/style.)

*calmly reaches under table. pulls out large box of knives. unlocks and opens box. places knives in a pattern on the table preparing for...*

Ill-considered joking on my part notwithstanding, I FOR SURE respect differences of opinion regarding the themes. That said, I'm having trouble parsing this. In what way are both themes not...text on a screen...?

*wipes knives off one by one. replaces knives in box....*
posted by zarq at 12:45 PM on September 14 [3 favorites]


without the ancient, opinionated user base pitching an absolute fucking fit.

Me, this is me. Keep your cornfusticated emojis off of my classic lawn.
posted by a humble nudibranch at 8:58 PM on September 14 [5 favorites]


These questions have been building up in me for a long time and I'm just gonna ask them now. Why does it matter if some people use favorites for bookmarks, and some people use them as a thumbs-up, and some people use them as a head nod? Why does it matter why someone else is leaving a favorite? Why does it matter if they're called "favorites", if it's generally known that everyone uses them in different ways? Do people actually keep track of who favorites them to the degree that they notice changes of plus or minus a single user? And do people actually keep track of who those users are? I've noticed that some people are against the idea of favorites entirely. Is there some kind of behind-the-scenes social stuff that goes on here where people are literally using favorited numbers in arguments or something? Do people get self-conscious over lack of favorites on their comments?

ok I have more questions but that's all I remember at the moment
posted by schroedinger at 10:11 PM on September 14 [4 favorites]


Why does it matter if some people use favorites for bookmarks, and some people use them as a thumbs-up, and some people use them as a head nod? Why does it matter why someone else is leaving a favorite?

https://xkcd.com/386/
posted by flabdablet at 10:53 PM on September 14


schroedinger: Why does it matter if they're called "favorites"

It matters because that's just wrong. "Favourites", thank you very much.
posted by Too-Ticky at 1:32 AM on September 15 [4 favorites]


I have an entire system by which I analyze whether other people really deserve the favorites they've received, so that I can know whether to feel superior to them or prostrate myself before their greatness. It's a bit like a combination of phrenology and the Egyptian Book of the Dead.
posted by XMLicious at 2:07 AM on September 15 [3 favorites]


Do people actually keep track of who favorites them to the degree that they notice changes of plus or minus a single user?

Favorites are Mefi's proverbial third rail.
posted by zarq at 4:31 AM on September 15


Do people get self-conscious over lack of favorites on their comments?
*checks out how many favorites schroedinger has*
*checks out how many favorites I have*
*turns back to personal altar for the [+] deity*
posted by jillithd at 7:17 AM on September 15 [2 favorites]


/collapse

Oh, I forgot where I was for a sec.
posted by emelenjr at 9:46 AM on September 15


I think the idea is that favorites incentivize bad behavior - stunty comments and snark. I am skeptical, myself.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:06 AM on September 15 [1 favorite]


To satisfy everyone, I propose we change the name to "favourorites." No one will have any conceivable problem.
posted by GenjiandProust at 10:39 AM on September 15 [5 favorites]


And then we will be trapped forever together in the infinite moebius gullet of the Favouroboros.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:41 AM on September 15 [7 favorites]


Cut your way out of the gullet with some favouroborosilicate.
posted by rhizome at 11:43 AM on September 15 [4 favorites]


เฒ _เฒ 
posted by Cookiebastard at 11:47 AM on September 15 [1 favorite]


No-one has ever used them for this in the history of the site.

they're not just for gaslighting?
posted by klangklangston at 3:09 PM on September 15 [1 favorite]


Is there some kind of behind-the-scenes social stuff that goes on here where people are literally using favorited numbers in arguments or something?

Or some sort of favourites arbitrage that forms the basis of a Ponzi scheme?

But I've said too much...
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 3:57 PM on September 15

ยฏ\_(ใƒ„)_/ยฏ
posted by standardasparagus at 4:07 AM on September 13
Have some metafilter gold for this comment.
posted by daybeforetheday at 4:29 PM on September 15 [1 favorite]


LISTEN ALL Y'ALL
FAVORITES ARBITRAGE
posted by Chrysostom at 10:18 PM on September 15 [2 favorites]


When you assumed that the theme you weren't using was shit, I guess.

I'm sorry. Again, I am not being obtuse. I just don't understand the point you're making.

Man, sometimes I think to myself, "I wonder if I'm a recognizable name on Metafilter. Like, when people see my username, do they remember me as that person who posted that other thing a few weeks ago, or that person who had a funny comment I liked, or whatever."

Now I'm pretty sure that a moment of thinking-out-loud combined with a bit of throwaway snark has enshrined me, at least for a while, as "that person who is EXTREMELY WRONG who would RUIN METAFILTER given his druthers."

I'm not wild about this, but live by the snark, die by the snark, I guess.
posted by Sokka shot first at 8:43 AM on September 16 [2 favorites]


Sokka I favorited you because you made me chuckle in recognition.
posted by SyraCarol at 9:23 AM on September 16


Gaslit Moebius strips taste like chicken.
posted by clavdivs at 1:07 PM on September 16


Nothing much to add to the actual subject under discussion.

But how nice was it to receive ThankYou MeMails from TwelveTwo, e.g. the ever joy enducing

"I am quite behind on thanking everyone who favorited me, but now is the time to catch up. Hooray for communal weblog! Hooray for comments! Hooray for favorites! Hooray for you being existing! Hooray for me! Hooray hooray hooray! :D"

[not sarcasm, not fake]
posted by Buntix at 4:58 PM on September 16 [3 favorites]


TwelveTwo said that "everyone who favorites my comments gets songs, happy words, book recommendations, funny links, and other fantastic prizes!" back in 2011. I love that he is still plugging away at that. Tehnund may have made it all the way through of those threads, but TwelveTwo did it backwards and in high heels.

Hooray for communal weblog!
Hooray hooray hooray! :D
posted by ActingTheGoat at 5:38 PM on September 16


Is there some kind of behind-the-scenes social stuff that goes on here where people are literally using favorited numbers in arguments or something?

Yes?... It wasn't behind the scenes, but a few years ago in a contentious metaTalk thread someone basically said something like "I see all of you who favorited that [difficult or argumentative] comment and you all suck!" or "You obviously all agree and are terrible people!" I'm sure it's happened more than once but I don't often feel the urge to search for angry comments on MetaFilter these days. Suffice to say people have been quite emotional about favorites for various reasons.
I have them turned off because I caught myself avoiding adding a favorite to an already well-favorited comment or post, which seemed unfair. As many ways as there are to use them, there are to be affected by them.
posted by oneirodynia at 5:48 PM on September 19 [1 favorite]


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