Do we need AskMeTalk? December 29, 2003 9:37 PM   Subscribe

Shouldn't MetaTalk, recently flooded (and, imho, diluted) by AskMe queries, be about MetaFilter alone and AskMe have a reflective sidekick of its own? [More inside.]
posted by MiguelCardoso to Feature Requests at 9:37 PM (52 comments total)

Ask MetaFilter, bright and beautiful as it is, is clearly a different kettle of fish. Shouldn't it have its own MetaAsk, to preserve its uniqueness and develop its own personality within this community weblog's remit? (An interesting chromatic question is: If grey questions blue, what colour would question green?)

It seems to me that there are now three (occasionally overlapping) audiences on this website: the blue, the grey and the green crowds. Given the politeness and usefulness of the green, I'd say that quite a few users would prefer their own "green" forum for the meta stuff, rather than engaging the sceptical, cynical and snarky forum which is MeTa.

Shyness and a non-confrontational attitude surely come into it. Concurrently, MeTa runs the risk of being sidetracked by the all too frequent topics about AskMe.

Given that MetaFilter and AskMe have such different principles and methods, don't you think that MeTa should remain restricted to MeFi issues and that AskMe should have a reflective off-shoot of its own? Just thinking out loud here.

In sum: to each its own.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 9:37 PM on December 29, 2003


No. MetaTalk is good for commenting on what goes on in the blue, in the green, and in the grey itself.

I think you just want one more place to start too many posts in.
posted by anapestic at 9:39 PM on December 29, 2003


Hang on. Miguel is complaining about something being diluted by pointless queries?
posted by adamgreenfield at 9:47 PM on December 29, 2003


Uhm. No.
posted by ZachsMind at 9:54 PM on December 29, 2003


Not pointless, Greenfield. Simply better marshalled elsewhere, in its own forum. I'm not sure myself; hence the "thinking aloud" proviso. Perhaps it is better to concentrate all questions in MeTa. Though I'm sure that not all AskMe devotees will bother. It really boils down to a cost/benefit analysis, I guess.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 9:59 PM on December 29, 2003


If grey questions blue, what colour would question green?

Is this a new GRE question?
posted by namespan at 10:07 PM on December 29, 2003


why is a carrot more orange than an orange?
posted by quonsar at 10:13 PM on December 29, 2003


No, Miguel, you can't have 4 places to post entries each day.
posted by Space Coyote at 10:35 PM on December 29, 2003


Actually, he could. Domain names and hosting are pretty cheap.

Besides, I sense proper restraint -- our portuguese friend has only posted four entries to AskMe since its inception. :)
posted by weston at 10:43 PM on December 29, 2003


It really boils down to a cost/benefit analysis, I guess.

But I don't know that I see the pros of seperating metagrooming for green and blue. Perhaps someone who is fond of the idea could break those down.

Cons would be that there would be two meta areas to pay attention to.
posted by weston at 10:45 PM on December 29, 2003


Weston: As I see it, AskMe is a wholly new endeavour with its own philosophy. It's not about links or discussion (the two staples of MetaFilter) - it's a wonderful, practical and utilitarian instrument which is Q&A-directed. As such - although it's experimental and no guidelines have yet been established - it really is an instant success. Meaning: its main objective is to not be sidetracked or mystified by metaphysics. It works!

On AskMe users consciously limit themselves to what is useful; to problem-solving. No wisecracks; no chat; no speculation. Complaints about AskMe are generally related to deflections from this simple agenda. It's not complicated.

MetaFilter, on the other hand, is in a perpetual state of flux. It's more open; it changes; it follows trends. MetaTalk helps define it and, as such, it's similarly open.

At the very least, I think, a new MeTa category (say "AskMe-related") should be added; so that both streams don't get confused. There are different attitudes and philosophies in play and, in more ways than one, AskMe is way more defined than MeFi or MeTa.

If this makes any sense, I'll be very glad. ;)
posted by MiguelCardoso at 11:15 PM on December 29, 2003


Why not think of MeTa as the place where you post all your meta-questions about everything *.metafilter.com ?

Also, from what Matt has said, there's been some pruning to AxMe going on that we're oblivious to.
posted by bshort at 11:24 PM on December 29, 2003


I'd like to suggest new colours for the rainbow spectrum that is Meta*, representing the newly-to-be-implemented "MiguelMe," the forum in which Miguel asks questions that are answered by Miguel, and also "MetaMiguel," in which Miguel asks questions related to "MiguelMe" that are answered by... Miguel!
posted by five fresh fish at 11:41 PM on December 29, 2003


This thread has value for me, cause I am fascinated watching Miguel constantly apply pressure to Matt. I think he is trying to break our poor host. I do not think he will succeed, but I do figure some dramatic event cannot be all that far away.
posted by thirteen at 11:58 PM on December 29, 2003


I'm not entirely sure that weston is aware of the definition of the word "friend."
posted by crunchland at 12:36 AM on December 30, 2003


Yup, I can see what a lousy idea this was. Apologies and triple vodkas all round! Nothing like a bracing gust of the old MeTa gale to make one come round to one's senses, such as they are. ;)
posted by MiguelCardoso at 5:34 AM on December 30, 2003


It's not a lousy idea, and there's nothing wrong with asking questions so keep it up, Miguel. And this is a very good idea: At the very least, I think, a new MeTa category (say "AskMe-related") should be added; so that both streams don't get confused.

(and if this question came from someone else, would it have occasioned this kind of response?)
posted by amberglow at 5:56 AM on December 30, 2003


Yes, most likely. Although we would have been less snarky about it.
posted by bshort at 6:06 AM on December 30, 2003


I think Mr. Cardoso's is a soundly great idea. Has anybody noticed the MetaTalk archives? New color or area would clear up a lot of confusion.

why is a carrot more orange than an orange?

How about an orange MetaAsk?
posted by hama7 at 6:21 AM on December 30, 2003


I too think it was a good question and second the idea that another category be added to MeTa (and that if be of a green hue, because frankly, I often forget to look at the category designation).
posted by ashbury at 7:48 AM on December 30, 2003


Rather than have a separate MeTa category, why not just divorce AskMe from MeTa? Probably involves a lot of work, but then you'd have each member's MeFi posting history, MeTa posting history, and AskMe posting history. It'd be much easier to browse.

MeTa would have fewer posts listed in its archives (because AskMe would have its own section), and would be more focused on site-specific issues.
posted by rocketman at 8:34 AM on December 30, 2003


Since a lot of the value in AskMe derives from the sense of community we have, it makes little sense to me to create a second forum for AskMe. Having a unified MetaFilter community has a great deal of intrinsic value.
posted by y6y6y6 at 8:40 AM on December 30, 2003


psst, rocketman, that's what Miguel was suggesting. It's not rocket science, y'know. :)
posted by ashbury at 8:43 AM on December 30, 2003


At the very least, I think, a new MeTa category (say "AskMe-related") should be added

That has my vote, too. But it should be noted that mathowie is probably already working on such further tweaks, given his previous comments.

I am fascinated watching Miguel constantly apply pressure to Matt. I think he is trying to break our poor host.

Sorry, but that's just dumb. Why are some people so determined to just sit and take take take from Metafilter without ever offering anything (thoughts, ideas, feedback) back? More, they are quick to condemn those who do. Mathowie is quite capable of reading a suggestion or alternate perspective on some aspect of the site and saying (to himself, if nothing else), "Nah, that's not the direction I want to go" or "too much work." I fail to see the pressure, unless you think that he's somehow under some obligation to fulfill each and every pony wish that gets posted.

Now THAT would be rude and selfish.
posted by rushmc at 8:46 AM on December 30, 2003


Sorry, but that's just dumb. Why are some people so determined to just sit and take take take from Metafilter without ever offering anything (thoughts, ideas, feedback) back?

Giving to MetaFilter means posting good links, thoughtful comments. Taking from MetaFilter must mean abusing the limited resources which keep the site humming.
posted by sudama at 8:57 AM on December 30, 2003


That has my vote, too. But it should be noted that mathowie is probably already working on such further tweaks, given his previous comments.

Yes he is, and he has posted a few weary replies to Miguel to let him finish. Using this forum to chant "Are we there yet" again and again is not the gentle help you seem to be implying it is.

As for your second part, I was the first to ask for a feature like Ask metafilter back in Jan 01 AND was the first to ask for a pony, so I am not sweating under your criticism. I know when to ask, and when to let the scab heal over. Being discourteous is not the same as being helpful. I never said Matt is incapable of weighing suggestions, I implied that he appears to be growing irritated with a particular user. I might be as wrong as you are.
posted by thirteen at 9:10 AM on December 30, 2003


Can Miguel have his own MeFi subdomain to keep from diluting metatalk?.
posted by mkelley at 9:36 AM on December 30, 2003


A present for thirteen.

The shirt, not the girl.
posted by iconomy at 10:16 AM on December 30, 2003


Giving to MetaFilter means posting good links, thoughtful comments.

Those are two ways. But not the only two.
posted by rushmc at 11:06 AM on December 30, 2003


Cuz the girl is for me, right iconomy? Right??
posted by rushmc at 11:07 AM on December 30, 2003


Um, forgive me for actually remembering things you post Miguel (I suppose I only remember your opinions because they are indeed so frequently expressed) but didn't you just post on the 21st about AskMe:

"Since it's probably the best thing on MeFi since the sliced-bread thread, wouldn't it be an elementary courtesy to extend the service (and information) to the blue-only crowd? Is it really so marvellous that it deserves to be kept for us aficionados alone?"

So are you saying you want MetaTalk to be blue only? And then have another area set up for green only questions? Interesting.
Later in the comments on that same thread you wrote

"So, there's a secret apartheid on MeFi, theora55, whereby the superior race is the grey-only; the middling race is blue-grey and the inferior one is blue through and through, poor bastards that they are?
I'm kidding, of course, but there just might be a kernel of truth here - which is really silly, I should add. ;)
How can you exclude your own companions? What does "We're all in this together" mean, if the words "all" and "together" don't really apply?"


HELLO MIGUEL???? Are you reading your own comments/posts as you write them? Now you suddenly want to hustle the green off to its own space?

...Or wait....is there something far more sinister at work? Is there in fact no single entity known as Miguel, but in fact a league of entities...or perhaps some mechanism, programmed with who knows what nefarious purpose in mind?

Tune in tomorrow, same Bat-time, same Bat-channel....
posted by batgrlHG at 11:09 AM on December 30, 2003


batgrlHC: with all respect, there is no contradiction whatsoever. That thread was simply about putting a link to AskMe on MeFi's front page. This one, in the form of an open question, was about whether it was worth having a separate area (or MeTa category) for matters relating to AskMe.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 11:51 AM on December 30, 2003


psst, rocketman, that's what Miguel was suggesting.

No. What he was suggesting was a "new" MetaTalk that would deal with etiquette and policy and bugs regarding AskMe - at least that's how I interpreted it.

Right now, AskMe is merely a category of MetaTalk - all posts and comments appear in your MetaTalk history. I propose that it be its own section, with a separate posting history from MetaFilter and MetaTalk.

Although I'll get by just fine if that doesn't happen.
posted by rocketman at 11:57 AM on December 30, 2003


But in it you answered your own current question, Miguel. And from that post I infer that the Miguel in that post would answer the Miguel of this post that there is room in here for comments about both blue and green. All that is needed is a new category, no need getting all separatist (and making needless work for Matt).

Hey, if you won't fully read yourself and then reapply it to new situations....

Dammit, I'm encouraging more MiguelTalk, aren't I?
*smacks self with penguin*
posted by batgrlHG at 12:04 PM on December 30, 2003


There will be a ask metafilter category in metatalk, not a separate metatalk site for ask metafilter.

Soon.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 12:41 PM on December 30, 2003


So many ponies, so few stall-muckers.
posted by five fresh fish at 1:32 PM on December 30, 2003


What about a category called "Miguel-related"?
posted by eyeballkid at 2:35 PM on December 30, 2003


What about a category called "Miguel-related"?

ooh -- can we all have one?
posted by feelinglistless at 3:47 PM on December 30, 2003


only if you're related to Miguel.
posted by namespan at 4:00 PM on December 30, 2003


There will be a ask metafilter category in metatalk, not a separate metatalk site for ask metafilter.

Hmmm. Orthogonal, yet sensible.

I like it.
posted by namespan at 4:01 PM on December 30, 2003


But does Miguel like it?
posted by languagehat at 9:02 PM on December 30, 2003


By 2005 there will be AskMi (as in "Ask, Miguel!"), a site where he will be encouraged to ask about anything. Get ready.
posted by gluechunk at 10:24 PM on December 30, 2003


But does Miguel like it?

Well, it was among his suggestions...

It does indeed seem like the right solution.
posted by weston at 11:57 PM on December 30, 2003


Hey, I like it!

It's slowly getting through my thick skull that Matt has already thought through all aspects of AskMe and that little is gained by suggesting what's probably already obvious to him. He just kindly lets us come up with suggestions so that we can feel we participate when what we should be doing is our best to keep AskMe useful and clean.

*wild cries of "Hallelujah!" from the mob; rapturous ethnic beggar in dark glasses and cool second-hand three-piece-suit throws up his hands and flings cane into the air, shouting "Thank you, Lord! He's finally seen the light!"; frantic wailing from the womenfolk; strange dogs baying from the hills*
posted by MiguelCardoso at 4:24 AM on December 31, 2003


*bays*
posted by taz at 4:33 AM on December 31, 2003


I'm Casting Miguel in the role as

Viscount Cardoso-Felleni van Gremmle.

in the second upcoming installment of

"The Grey Smock"

so, if i should ask if this is a good name for a character should i askmetafilter (the Intelligence arm of metafilter;), ask metatalk, shut up, e-mail ossibuke or telegram Miguel?
posted by clavdivs at 10:10 AM on December 31, 2003


the Intelligence arm of metafilter

Now that's a scary thought.

INTERIOR: An untidy, book-filled apartment. Nighttime. Suddenly the door shudders under the impact of loud, belligerent knocking. Clearly it is a matter of moments before whoever is outside gets impatient and kicks the door in. The terrified tenant leaps out of bed, throws on a robe, and runs to open the door. Outside stand two men in green coats and leather caps with a strange insignia.

FIRST AGENT: AMF. I'm afraid you'll have to come with us, sir.

TENANT: But... what have I done? Where are you taking me?

SECOND AGENT: Save it for User Number One, pal. Now, move it or we send in the elephant.
posted by languagehat at 12:09 PM on December 31, 2003


{suggests, french sounding siren passing before "pick-up"}

"WENOWENOWENOWENOWENOwenowenoweno....."
posted by clavdivs at 6:19 PM on December 31, 2003


the Intelligence arm of metafilter
Oxymoron Alert!

{suggests Bill Withers singing "Ain't No Sunshine"}
"I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know..."
posted by wendell at 6:57 PM on December 31, 2003


clavdivs, languagehat - this was the very first thing I've read on the internet in 2004, and it made me very happy. I love you guys. (Yes, you, too wendell.)
posted by taz at 11:28 PM on December 31, 2003


in the alley off the fogbound boulevard, a man in a grey smock crushes out his cigarette and listens as the siren fades.
posted by quonsar at 11:51 PM on December 31, 2003


Happy New Year to MeFites everywhere! I ♥ MeFi, MeTa & AskMe!
posted by Lynsey at 12:05 AM on January 1, 2004


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