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How about a Statute of Limitations on double-posts?
June 22, 2001 12:44 PM   Subscribe

How about a Statute of Limitations on double-posts? jpoulos just posted a link that turns out to be a double-post from something from April 2000. Sure, he should have done the search, but is there a point where something has slipped out of our collective conscious long enough that it can be seen afresh?
posted by briank to Etiquette/Policy at 12:44 PM (12 comments total)

I'd say something that was last posted over a year ago is probably fair game. There's lot of water under the bridge in a year's time.
posted by briank at 12:45 PM on June 22, 2001


I was surprised that Double-Post Watch only warns you that your link has been posted before, but doesn't actually stop you from posting it. Maybe Matt should plop a big honkin' graphic next to the warning to jar people into noticing it, because I'm sure I'd have done just what he did: vaguely noticed on a subconscious level that the wording on the preview page was different than usual, but not have consciously grokked the warning itself until after I'd already hit "post." All this sans-serif text tends to blur together after a while.
posted by aaron at 1:06 PM on June 22, 2001


I was surprised that Double-Post Watch ... doesn't actually stop you from posting it.

Two-thirds of the folks on MeFi live for the chance to dogpile someone who has inadvertently double-posted. (And if they can do so in the first message of the thread ... ooooh, baby!) Depriving them of this petty pleasure seems unnecessarily cruel.

I agree that a warning graphic might be nice -- "all this sans-serif text tends to blur together after a while" is an apt summation. Or perhaps we've found the one-and-only-one application for the blink tag. I also think a year Statute of Limitations sounds about right, although I suspect that another two-thirds of MeFi'ers are A.D.D. addled tech guys like me, who can't even remember how many of their grandparents are still living much less if we discussed something six months ago ...

posted by Shadowkeeper at 1:29 PM on June 22, 2001


I was surprised that Double-Post Watch only warns you that your link has been posted before, but doesn't actually stop you from posting it.

i imagine there are many reasons for this, one of which is that someone may post a link to a site's front page, which may have been posted before under a different context. but the graphic to bring notice to the warning seems like a good idea, because it does tend to get looked over.
posted by pnevares at 1:59 PM on June 22, 2001


Two-thirds of the folks on MeFi live for the chance to dogpile someone who has inadvertently double-posted.

Oh please. People are usually polite to point of meekness about this. Everyone understands that it's an accident except for the occasional random flamer.
posted by rodii at 2:06 PM on June 22, 2001


I'm trying to migrate a "discussion" from a Metafilter thread over to Metatalk. Wish me luck ...

Backstory: Ezrael double-posted and was duly dogpiled. He then wrote "Hey, I searched for it and checked the link. If it didn't come up after all that, what else am I supposed to do, manually search every thread on MeFi? As you just pointed out, there are more than 8000 of them."

To which Mo Nickels replied You're actually supposed to read Metafilter. That's the biggest part of contributing. If you read Metafilter, then you'll have an idea of what's already been posted. If you only post new entries but never read the existing threads, then you're not committing yourself enough to the enterprise. And that leads to the Prometheus Syndrome, in which a person thinks he's bringing the rest of use fire in the form of a very special link, as if the person has special, inside knowledge of the Associated Press wire or CNN that the rest of us don't. Bah. There's no excuse for double posting."

And then I chimed in with "According to his profile, Ezrael has posted 37 links and 409 comments. So %8 of his total posts are new entries -- that's not a bad ratio.".

And ... FIGHT!

posted by Shadowkeeper at 4:26 PM on June 22, 2001


I don't know about you folks, but I don't spend all day reading all of MeFi. Sometimes i don't check MeFi for a few days, and by then so much stuff has been added that I opt for keeping up with recent posts, without tracking all the way back to read everything that's been posted since I last had a look. After all, most of us have more to do than read websites all day. So I don't understand all the fuss about double postings; they don't occur very frequently, and it's easy to filter them (I use my Brain Device(TM) for that).

Mo Nickels: There's no excuse for double posting.

Those that are all too happy to jump double posters should get a life. Back away from the computer slowly. Go out and smell a flower or something. There is more to life than reading MeFi all day, and nobody likes a smartarse. Everybody makes mistakes, and I'd rather have to skim over a few double posts than miss something of interest.

The flaming and criticism that people have to endure when they post something to the front page (double or not) is most discouraging - it will deter people from posting, which may lead to an open community turning into a very closed clique. It sure as hell deters me; I only post the occasional hesitant comment and that's it.
posted by dutchbint at 4:33 PM on June 22, 2001


I certainly don't read every post.

here's what I do. I search for the URL. but I know that the same story can be posted many places, so then I search for a keyword or two.

so far, so good, but it's still likely that some day I'll post something that has been posted before, and it won't be a big deal.

double post? move along. or have another discussion about it. big whip. - rcb
posted by rebeccablood at 4:44 PM on June 22, 2001


I think part of the reason there are so many news items posted to the front page, even if they're barely newsworthy, is that people feel they're the only safe way to avoid a double post.
And there is no way on Earth that I am going back and reading every thread that existed before I got here.
posted by Doug at 5:20 PM on June 22, 2001


"There's no excuse for double posting."

Right. I always just use my magic wand to make sure I'm not double posting. People who can't do that are very stupid.
posted by y6y6y6 at 7:01 PM on June 22, 2001


And there is no way on Earth that I am going back and reading every thread that existed before I got here.

Thus the search feature was born, but I agree in principle. One should be able to read a week's worth of posts to determine if one might be double-posting, but certainly not back into the mists of MeFi antiquity.

Sp...Mo is right that the point is to read the threads, and it is worth the extra few minutes to do what rebecca does and at least check to see if the URL has been part of a recent thread. Ezrael should have ntoiced that he was double-posting even without doing an extensive search, since it was a front-page item just a couple of days ago, but piling on jpoulos for a link that was posted 14 months ago is a bit much.


posted by briank at 7:06 PM on June 22, 2001


1.5 days prior to be exact. Furthermore there were some very easy keywords to search for a Mo pointed out I believe: rental, Big Brother, car, GPS, speeding, ticket, $450, etc etc

I usually don't have a hissy over people double posting. I've done it myself as have most of us at one time or another. This one though, grates a bit as did the one a few days ago that had almost the exact same front page post (can't remember what it was now)....

And don't let it deter you from posting threads. Post away! Just do the requisite homework first, you know?
posted by fooljay at 1:01 AM on June 23, 2001


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