One Line One Link Posts November 14, 2005 6:35 PM   Subscribe

When is a one-line FPP with no (or little) description appropriate for MeFi?

Oh really? Is that so? Well, is this a good example then [MI]?
posted by sjvilla79 to Etiquette/Policy at 6:35 PM (42 comments total)

I thought this recent news image of an Iraqi woman suicide bomber could rouse some topical discussion on MeFi (still looking for a better resolution photo too). My link description would be something witty like: So, what do you have planned for retirement? I may also link to a source article (via NYT) and provide a descriptive quote via "more inside". Yeah, I am very conscious of the mushroom thread and how at any instant this place can go tits up. Thus, I await approval before trying something that might cause disapproval among my fellow members. Not that I'll ever match MiHail's brilliance though. After all, I am but a mere mortal!
posted by sjvilla79 at 6:36 PM on November 14, 2005


Beat you!
posted by Joeforking at 6:36 PM on November 14, 2005


Agh, no I didn't, sorry SJ
posted by Joeforking at 6:36 PM on November 14, 2005


Well, is this a good example then [MI]?

I meant to write ....a good example then? [MI]. Duh.
posted by sjvilla79 at 6:38 PM on November 14, 2005


Boy, I wouldn't do that. Thought if you just HAD to post it and didn't htink it would fly in MeFi proper, you could always just put it in MetaTalk to gauge the reaction.
posted by jessamyn at 6:40 PM on November 14, 2005


ololol. The guy who posted "Street Surfer" is referencing the mushroom thread. It's like when you hold a mirror up to another mirror and it goes to infinity. If you think that is an acceptable FPP then you need banned ASAP.
posted by fire&wings at 6:42 PM on November 14, 2005


it's about the links, not the discussion
posted by bonaldi at 6:45 PM on November 14, 2005


...you could always just put it in MetaTalk to gauge the reaction.

I guess that's what this thread will do. My intention is not to offend though. I just find the image striking, thought-provoking and most of all insane. Within reason, therefore, why shouldn't it be discussed? I mean we had the "Five questions non-Muslims would like answered." post yesterday. Isn't what I'm proposing here with my topic more or less in the same category?
posted by sjvilla79 at 6:47 PM on November 14, 2005


"I thought this recent news image of an Iraqi woman suicide bomber could rouse some topical discussion on MeFi..."

Why can't people accept that the purpose of a post is not primarily to spur discussion? It's not.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:48 PM on November 14, 2005


...it's about the links, not the discussion

This statement is contradicted each day on MetaFitler.

If you think that is an acceptable FPP then you need banned ASAP.

I think you're absolutely correct. I bring nothing of value to this site and deserve to be banned immediately. What a clever sausage you are. Have a gold star. Here, have another.
posted by sjvilla79 at 6:52 PM on November 14, 2005


A good post to MetaFilter is something that meets the following criteria: most people haven't seen it before, there is something interesting about the content on the page, and it might warrant discussion from others.

People have seen pictures of suicidebombers before. There is nothing interesting about another picture of one. Discussion without decent content is not the point of metafilter.
posted by 23skidoo at 6:53 PM on November 14, 2005


Laugh
hahaha.

You know, I honestly came *this close* to posting this link to the blue. I loved that page, for like a minute and a half, and I think a lot of people here would as well. Not the majority, but a lot.

but if I had posted it, my description would have been very clear. I'd want people to know what it was about, so if they weren’t interested they wouldn't click.

in my view there is some function f(x), such that f = the total time wasted by any mefite who might not like a link x. You want to minimize that. If you think every mefite will like a link, you can be a bit more cryptic. If you think fewer mefites might like a link, you should be more descriptive.

In this case, you should simply state that there was a fewer suicide bomber in Iraq, and ask for people's thoughts.

The less snarky you are in your FPP, the better the discussion.

You can follow up with your own shrill-ass commentary if you want, but keep the FPP objective and informative.
posted by delmoi at 7:01 PM on November 14, 2005


Nice, delmoi. Cheers.
posted by sjvilla79 at 7:03 PM on November 14, 2005


The concept of a Fark rebuttal as FPP frightens me.

P.S. You're interpretation of witty betrays your lack of wit.
posted by furtive at 7:09 PM on November 14, 2005


I don't know of Fark. I smell peanuts though.
posted by sjvilla79 at 7:22 PM on November 14, 2005


Thus, I await approval before trying something that might cause disapproval among my fellow members.

The idea sucks.
posted by stirfry at 7:23 PM on November 14, 2005


This doesn't seem like FPP material to me.

Is it a compelling picture? Absolutely.

Is it a compelling picture that has been on the front page of every newspaper in the world? Yes.

Would it possibly make a good FPP if coupled with, say, other links? Perhaps a fresh (if such a thing is possible) treatment of the case of the apprehended suicide bomber? Maybe give us the backstory? Possibly.

I mean we had the "Five questions non-Muslims would like answered." post yesterday. Isn't what I'm proposing here with my topic more or less in the same category?

Do you really want to post something in this category? I found that post (and most single link newsfilter items) profoundly lame. Don't make a profoundly lame post. Or even a partially lame post. There is simply no need.

I think you have, in your cautions resort to meta, stumbled upon a pretty good FPP litmus test. If you think your potential FPP is not up to snuff, especially if it deals with front page news, don't post it.
posted by kosem at 7:28 PM on November 14, 2005


You know, I honestly came *this close* to posting this link to the blue.

Delmoi, I think that link actually WAS posted to the blue last year at some time.
posted by spicynuts at 7:37 PM on November 14, 2005


I bring nothing of value to this site and deserve to be banned immediately.

This is the first sensible thing you've said. Ever.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 7:41 PM on November 14, 2005


When I see a borderline site I bookmark it and promise myself that I'll post it in a week. I've not once thought it was compelling enough to post it a week later.
posted by oddman at 7:50 PM on November 14, 2005


My intention is not to offend

wrong community weblog, then...
posted by quonsar at 7:50 PM on November 14, 2005


This is the first sensible thing you've said. Ever.

And the crowd cheers.
posted by sjvilla79 at 7:53 PM on November 14, 2005


In this case, you should simply state that there was a fewer suicide bomber in Iraq, and ask for people's thoughts.

Sorry, I meant female. That's a spell-o, an error caused by careless spell checking.

I should mention I'm drunk off my ass. And it's a Monday night. And I'm happy as a clam.
posted by delmoi at 8:00 PM on November 14, 2005


"This statement is contradicted each day on MetaFitler."

No it isn't. If it were, most posts would be like this one you propose: lame excuses to start a discussion. But they're not and such posts remain the exception, not the rule.

Yes, we want good discussions about posts. But the posts—the linked sites—are the raison d'etre of MetaFilter and must stand on their own merits. They should be interesting, unusual, and unfamiliar. If good discussion follows, all the better. But it's not necessary that good discussion—or any discussion—follow, and this fact should provide a clue to what does and does not make a good post. Discussion is certainly not sufficient for a good post, and it's not even necessary.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:07 PM on November 14, 2005


I wouldn't unless you're planning to compare and contrast that photo with a picture of Terry Jones from "Life of Brian".
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 8:09 PM on November 14, 2005


I, sir, am offended. I demand a free subscription to your newsletter (in the which I am very interested) !
posted by blue_beetle at 8:20 PM on November 14, 2005


I once turned a one liner into post. It also included the word boner which earned me my first MeTa callout.
posted by euphorb at 8:22 PM on November 14, 2005


I really wish people would not use "could generate good discussion" as the reason for making an FPP. IMO (and plenty will disagree with me), discussion should be an afterthought; a bonus. Link to interesting things that are on the web should be the first priority. A photo of a mushroom or a suicide bomber more than likely are not interesting in and of themselves. If that criteria is not met, it's not a good FPP. End of discussion. (For me, I mean.)
posted by dobbs at 8:32 PM on November 14, 2005


I thought this recent news image of an Iraqi woman suicide bomber could rouse some topical discussion on MeFi

Uh, no. Here are the reasons why:

1) It's provocative (in the over-the-top, bad sense of the word) and it's just a single image. It would stimulate conversation, but not the kind anyone wants.
2) Offering something provocative without any supporting material tends to *provoke* the membership whereupon a shitstorm ensues. You can present provocative material here, but do it carefully and offer lots of factual supporting info that can be discussed rationally. This image just prods lots of heated emotions and gives no one anything fixed to discuss. Any ensuing discussion would be a battle of opinions.
3) It's political (always be careful with the political)
4) It's Israel/Palestine, sometimes referred to as I/P - this is a hot button subject which many would say that MetaFilter just "can't do well." I'm not sure I agree, but it's reason to be careful.

You seem to sense that you are close to the line, and maybe you should listen to that instinct. Actually if this were a post it would be ridiculously way over the line - an incredibly bad idea that would be deleted. So good on ya! You made the right decision to ask for advice. Next time, though, don't burden MetaTalk with this kind of advice question. Just email someone. Any member you like/respect. Most everyone here is cool enough to help you out with a reply. I certainly will if you want my opinion on something.
posted by scarabic at 8:58 PM on November 14, 2005


Rousing some topical discussion is not what Metafilter is for.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:09 PM on November 14, 2005


Thanks for that, scarabic.
posted by sjvilla79 at 9:09 PM on November 14, 2005


Which is to say, what dobbs said.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:10 PM on November 14, 2005


I think I get the point now.
posted by sjvilla79 at 9:10 PM on November 14, 2005


And I'm appreciative of the feedback. The above comment wasn't meant to imply anything negative.
posted by sjvilla79 at 9:12 PM on November 14, 2005


"Clever Sausage" is now my favorite phrase for a little while. I think I'll take it to work with me tomorrow!
posted by freebird at 9:45 PM on November 14, 2005


..it's about the links, not the discussion

This statement is contradicted each day on MetaFitle


No, it isn't, really. You can't see all the happy people who are here for the links because they're busy looking at them, not babbling away in threads. I reckon I comment on about 1% of the links that I read, most of which I look at in NetNewsWire without ever even coming to the site, and there must be thousands of members (not to mention non-member readers) who never do anything but click on links, read them, and are grateful to MetaFilter for pointing them out. (Not that you couldn't make a really amazing post about women terrorists through the ages, with that topical image in there somewhere...)

Discussion is icing, links are cake.
posted by jack_mo at 6:21 AM on November 15, 2005


And where did this idea that a single link post is no good come from? It seems to be really prevalent among newer members.
posted by jack_mo at 6:50 AM on November 15, 2005


If the link is good enough, a one-line single link post with little (or no) description is perfectly appropriate.
posted by crunchland at 6:58 AM on November 15, 2005


And where did this idea that a single link post is no good come from? It seems to be really prevalent among newer members.

Zealously adopted bit of proscription, I'm thinking. A good, lengthy argument for the merits of well-researched multi-source posts on interesting and novel subjects can be efficiently reduced to the less-helpful "don't post one link FPPs d00d". And the latter can be easily repeated. And so the virus spreads.

And so you have people afraid of making one-link posts to good things, and other people dressing up shitty posts with multiple shitty links, and the problem of good posts remains unadressed.

We need to spread the word: Shitty single link posts are no good.
posted by cortex at 7:39 AM on November 15, 2005


jack_mo, perhaps in your dream world but that's not the way things stand on the ground. Until mathowie begins actually deleting posts with reasons like "great discussion but the link is so-so!" then the whole "links matter more" contingent is just wishful thinking. A good post is a good post and it's made up of many different elements including links, tone, topicality, and the potential for discussion.

But honestly sjvilla, what kind of discussion do you think would emerge from a picture of a suicide bomber? To be blunt, such a post wouldn't rouse good discussion. At all. You wouldn't even make it out of the gates with such a post. Also, since newsfilter is generally judged to a harsher standard, you'd probably be better off updating the previous bombing thread with the pic. Like scarabic said, be very careful when handling dynamite. For some great examples of political/newsfiltery posts check y2karl's posting history. The more in depth you can make them, the better. Reaching a level of analysis not available in most any random newspaper is the difference between a so-so or bad newsfilter post and a great one. A single picture would never be enough.
posted by nixerman at 7:49 AM on November 15, 2005


We need to spread this word : jack-booted metatalk control-freak thugs are no good.

When any idiot can make a call-out for any damn thing that even slightly tickles their fancy or raises their ire, they will. And they do.

I propose a week's time-out for every jackass who brings a false and crappy call-out up on Metatalk. Maybe then the little self-important ideologue shits would think twice before pushing the post button.
posted by crunchland at 7:51 AM on November 15, 2005


Until mathowie begins actually deleting posts with reasons like "great discussion but the link is so-so!" then the whole "links matter more" contingent is just wishful thinking.

He has deleted FPPs that are shitty links even if they have dozens or a hundred comments. To my knowledge he has never deleted an FPP that was an excellent (or even just so-so) link (unless it's a double) even if it was a single word link and even if it generates little or no discussion. The vast majority of my own FPPs have little commentary besides "thanks for the link!" and usually less than 10 of those. I've never had an FPP deleted, that I can recall. I even have an FPP with zero comments in it, I think.

The kinds of things I link to are the kinds of things I come here for. With the exception of matteo's consistently good opuses, I rarely bother commenting in the multi-link essayesque posts, and their prevalence as of late is a bit disturbing and is the reason we ended up with someone thinking linking to a mushroom jpg was a good idea.

Of course, not trying to set myself up as the perfect FPPer--not by any stretch of the imagination--but I do believe your "example" is flawed.
posted by dobbs at 8:36 AM on November 15, 2005


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