How many questions per AskMe are allowed? June 18, 2006 2:37 PM   Subscribe

25 answers, 3 users marked as favorite. Yet I get "please don't abuse ask me by asking 300 questions disguised as one" in my email. I didn't actually ask 300 questions, I asked for answers for the debunkable ones. The thread was doing quite well, and was quite informative before it was deleted.
posted by loquacious to Bugs at 2:37 PM (90 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

And regarding "I removed your AskMe question. You'lll have to ask about them one at a time like everyone else." do you really want me to post each one of those questions individually? Isn't that just going to create even more noise?
posted by loquacious at 2:37 PM on June 18, 2006


Also, MetaChat is not some dumping ground or landfill of/for MeFi rejects. It's not for you to reference off hand like some lesser entity. It's not an official function or overflow parking lot for MeFi. It is not yours.

The fact you consistantly reference it and allude to it as such is disturbing and extremely offensive to me.

How you fail to realize that it is an oasis and escape from bullshit like this - a direct response to the more heavy-handed moderation and infighting here on MeFi - a direct response to this "landfill" attitude you seem to display - amazes and confounds me.

jessamyn, I'm left doubting your editorial objectivity. There's been so many questions and comments that you've deleted that had no need to be. Sometimes it feels like you're our own personal FCC office gone quite mad. It stinks, frankly, and I'm not sure you quite realize how many users you've annoyed with it.

Why? Do you need a vacation? Do you even want the responsibility? What gives?
posted by loquacious at 2:45 PM on June 18, 2006


371 factoids? And you don't think that was a bit excessive? Regardless, the snopes thread shouldn't have been hard to find. What kind of searching did you try before posting?
posted by mediareport at 2:48 PM on June 18, 2006


The snopes thread is unreadable.

Besides, AskMe users are smarter, more edyfing and more creative than snopes.
posted by loquacious at 2:52 PM on June 18, 2006


If you posted that in the Blue, it would've gone without deletion and had a wider audience. You've been here long enough to know that. So why didn't you?
posted by SeizeTheDay at 2:53 PM on June 18, 2006


MetaChat is for talking about things. I don't think it's a dumping ground, but sometimes chatty questions would be better there. In fact, sometimes they go there and thrive.

I sent you an email explaining the deletion. You asked 300+ "questions" at one time which is abusing the community and the general standard of asking one question at a time which is a fairly hard and fast limit, enough so that it's been coded into the site and is not merely a guideline.

I'm interested to hear what people think about this, but to me it was a pretty cut and dried "this is not what ask metafilter is for" question.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:54 PM on June 18, 2006 [1 favorite]


A no-name one link post to a bulleted outline list phrased in the form of a question to the blue?

Are you fucking mad or just fond of rectal fissures and tears?
posted by loquacious at 2:55 PM on June 18, 2006


Sorry, that was for SeizeTheDay, jess.
posted by loquacious at 2:56 PM on June 18, 2006


I'm just making the statement that you can get away with chatfilter on the Blue, as opposed to the Green. With everyone (rightfully so) being so uppity about AskMeFi being useful and informative, I'm not sure how you could claim your post as nothing but a house of useless guessing, anecdotes, and a general waste of time. (And don't trot out the "I asked people for citations" nonsense. That's just a cover for "let's discuss useless trivia.")
posted by SeizeTheDay at 2:59 PM on June 18, 2006


I really don't see any problem with the deleted thread. It may not be terribly interesting, but that's for people who choose to read it to judge.
posted by sindark at 2:59 PM on June 18, 2006


Sorry, that was for SeizeTheDay, jess.

*laughs* Yeah, wouldn't want her to think you were overreacting or anything.

Come on, loquacious. Asking for answers to 371 questions at once is so clearly ridiculous it's astonishing you've chosen it as your moment to unload your frustration on the moderators. If ever there was someone who needed to step away from the keyboard for a few hours, you'd be that person right now.
posted by mediareport at 3:00 PM on June 18, 2006


I guess what I'm trying to say, jessamyn, is that perhaps we should let the community decide if it's not what AskMe is for by their response - rather than pre-emptively deciding for the community.

If I'd been flagged, snarked at in thread or whatever, then I'd say - sure, people didn't want that here.

But people jumped right in, contributed, and were informative as hell.

It's a perfect example of how the hive-mind can attack a large problem all at once, breaking the task down into many small segments and having many hands make the work light.

And it was enjoyable to boot, damnit.
posted by loquacious at 3:01 PM on June 18, 2006


Aaugh! If it were maybe 20 or 30. What mediareport just said.
posted by furiousthought at 3:02 PM on June 18, 2006


Sorry,

I'm not sure how you could claim your post as anything but a house of useless guessing, anecdotes, and a general waste of time.

I guess what I'm trying to say, jessamyn, is that perhaps we should let the community decide if it's not what AskMe is for by their response - rather than pre-emptively deciding for the community.

That's what makes her a "moderator", as opposed to just a poster like you and me. She was given the responsibility of helping decide what is and what is not AskMeFi, among other things. That's also why we have MeTa, so that people like you can vent their frustration and discuss their alternative perspective. Everything here is working the way it's supposed to.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 3:04 PM on June 18, 2006


loquacious wrote, "If I'd been flagged, snarked at in thread or whatever, then I'd say - sure, people didn't want that here."
Accordingly, I have gone into the deleted thread and flagged it as noise. Awful, awful question, and I don't want it in AskMe.
posted by boo_radley at 3:04 PM on June 18, 2006


Is it something in the water? Has everyone at MeFi gone batshitinsane?

*waits for loquacious to sprawl across a piano and warble "Memories"*
posted by languagehat at 3:05 PM on June 18, 2006


It's the heat, languagehat. It's 99 degrees here, and I'm just in no mood.
posted by boo_radley at 3:07 PM on June 18, 2006


I'm not sure how you could claim your post as anything but a house of useless guessing, anecdotes, and a general waste of time.

I had already learned a couple of things, so it wasn't a waste of time for at least one person.
posted by loquacious at 3:11 PM on June 18, 2006


Also, MetaChat is not some dumping ground or landfill of/for MeFi rejects. It's not for you to reference off hand like some lesser entity. It's not an official function or overflow parking lot for MeFi. It is not yours.

I don't have an opinion one way or the other on the question--although it does seem like a lot to post all at once--but I thought that this bit was worth repeating. MetaChat is not for second-string AskMe questions.

In any case, debunking the useless facts--the ones that need debunking, anyway--seems like a fun group project, so I created a page on the wiki for it. Behold, the Debunkathon!
posted by monju_bosatsu at 3:22 PM on June 18, 2006


I guess what I'm trying to say, jessamyn, is that perhaps we should let the community decide if it's not what AskMe is for by their response - rather than pre-emptively deciding for the community.

I think this is a terrible idea. I don't agree with every decision matthowie or jessamyn make around here, but I'd much rather have a person to blame for bad decisions than an ambiguous and unaccountable hive mind.
posted by scottreynen at 3:22 PM on June 18, 2006


You can't see it, but I'm flagging you as hard as I can. Edifying you on pointless trivia does not make good AskMe.
posted by boo_radley at 3:25 PM on June 18, 2006


I'm newish to metafilter, and I know there is some argument as to whether new members should post to MetaTalk at all, so take this with however many grains of salt you need.

The way I see it, there are three separate issues here:
1) Is this post an abuse of askme?
2) Did this post spark interesting responses? and if so
3) Does that warrant its inclusion in a forum that will reach significantly more people than a post to metachat or some other forum?

If you'd narrowed down one, or even several, dubious 'facts,' and posted these to askme with the link to the full list inside, I doubt you'd have had a problem. It's one thing to ask "Are these following purported facts actually myths?" and quite another to ask "Can anyone debunk any of these 300+ facts, many of which are true?" It's inspecific, and so to my mind an abuse of askme.

But, loquacious, you're right--it would've gotten shot down on the blue. I think that you could have satisfied issues 2 and 3 (sparks interesting discussion and so warrants a large forum) while narrowing the list to 3 or 4 questionable facts.

I think that this would deal with SeizeTheDay's complaint that this question is "nothing but a house of useless guessing, anecdotes, and a general waste of time." If you'd pared the list to (preferably) one, or even a few, questions with which you take issue, I'd expect that your post would have received informed answers with compelling linked evidence. There's so much there that it seems like noise.

All that said, I see a dozen other questions on AskMe daily that are more interesting.
posted by scarylarry at 3:26 PM on June 18, 2006


Ah, well. It's probably the first AskMe post to spawn it's very own Wiki.

Livin' large as usual.
posted by loquacious at 3:29 PM on June 18, 2006


Hah, make that TWO wikis.
posted by loquacious at 3:31 PM on June 18, 2006


Heh. Great minds think alike, I guess.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 3:33 PM on June 18, 2006


If I'd been flagged, snarked at in thread or whatever, then I'd say - sure, people didn't want that here.

But people jumped right in, contributed, and were informative as hell.


This line of reasoning drives me nuts, and I would like to take the time, right now, to draw attention to it.

In a community pushing 40,000 members, every thread that isn't impossibly esoteric or technical will get some kind of response, especially the worst ones. Please don't point to thread comments and say "see! people liked it, so it should stay!" that's what insomnia used to do all the time for his garbage agenda posts before he was justly banned. The mushroom thread had a legendary number of comments in it, and that is one of the worst posts in metafilter history. In a community this large, there's always someone willing to participate in even the worst discussions. getting a response to your question is simply not an accurate measure of its validity as an askme question.

additionally, askme has its own rules for questions that don't depend on how the community feels about the post. it someone were to post "how do you like my new hat?" with a picture of a hat to askmefi, and every single user were to chime in and say it's a great hat and they love the question, it would still be chatfilter and merit deletion. askme simply has rules, and no amount of community participation subjugates those rules if a mod chooses to enforce them.
posted by shmegegge at 3:34 PM on June 18, 2006


ugh, loquacious - perhaps in bad taste, but at least you're living up to your name.
posted by muddgirl at 3:35 PM on June 18, 2006


My mind isn't so great, but yours and blag's apparently are.
posted by loquacious at 3:35 PM on June 18, 2006


shmegegge : Now you're talking plain sense. Points taken. Thanks.

However, the mushroom thread was all kinds of awesome.
posted by loquacious at 3:38 PM on June 18, 2006


askme has its own rules for questions that don't depend on how the community feels about the post. it someone were to post "how do you like my new hat?" with a picture of a hat to askmefi, and every single user were to chime in and say it's a great hat and they love the question, it would still be chatfilter and merit deletion. askme simply has rules, and no amount of community participation subjugates those rules if a mod chooses to enforce them.

See, but many people would point to this very same example and say, "Why is this deleted? Why is it 'chatfilter'?" If it had been phrased slightly differently, it would not have been deleted: "I just bought this new hat at the store, and before I wear it to my brother's wedding, I want to know if a majority of people would find it fashionable. So tell me, how do you like my new hat?" there, that question is a million times more "appropriate for AskMetafilter" than the hundreds of "IANAL" questions we see almost every day.

Metafilter is a community, unline other q&a sites like AskYahoo or whatever. As such, shouldn't members of the community have some say in what's appropriate, rather than just follow dictatorial rules set by "a mod"? (IMO, that's pretty much how it's run, anyway).
posted by muddgirl at 3:40 PM on June 18, 2006


Another vote for the admins to stop saying "take this to metachat". It's really quite condescending.
posted by seanyboy at 3:44 PM on June 18, 2006


A perfect solution, monju_bosatsu. Now everyone is happy. Right, folks?
posted by leftcoastbob at 3:45 PM on June 18, 2006


Ugh, wouldn't that kind of thing be better suited for the MetaChat Wiki?

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to jump into the lion habitat of the Kiev Zoo!

God will save me, if he ex-OW!
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 3:53 PM on June 18, 2006


However, the mushroom thread was all kinds of awesome.

lordy, yes it was, but the POST was terrible.

muddgirl, I'm not following your hypothetical. are you saying that people really WOULD think "do you like my hat" was fine, and that they would then convince the admins to leave it?
posted by shmegegge at 3:54 PM on June 18, 2006


oh, and I too dislike the use of "take it to metachat" that matt and jess somtimes employ.
posted by shmegegge at 3:55 PM on June 18, 2006


fuck askme, and why are we talkng about this on meta?

*drinks own urine*
posted by quonsar at 4:07 PM on June 18, 2006


To be honest, I didn't mind the question at all. I'm usually the first to decry abuse of AskMe but I thought this one was a good use of the collective mind. It was, in my eyes, closer to the spirit-and-intent of AskMe than the frequent pseudo-chatfilter relationship questions.

Still, as the others have said: have at the wiki. Or the other one.
posted by blag at 4:24 PM on June 18, 2006


Your question "How many of these "useless facts" can you debunk?" can only have one form of answer. A number. If you wanted to ask WHICH of these useless facts can you debunk, you'ld probably get a more reasonable response.

And with all due respect, putting "I don't mean this to be chatfilter" doesn't make it not chatfilter. Example:

"I don't mean this to be chatfilter, but I like stuff. Do you like stuff? Please explain what kind of stuff you like and why."
posted by blue_beetle at 4:26 PM on June 18, 2006


371*5=1,855. You wanna ask your questions, I'd suggest ponying up.
posted by Kwantsar at 4:28 PM on June 18, 2006


I think a more accurate deletion reason was 'this post fucking sucks.' It'd end the debate, really, too.
posted by cellphone at 5:05 PM on June 18, 2006


I agree with scarylarry. The question reads like "I don't feel like using Google. Here, you people do all the work." And since it's a lot of work, it just comes across as kinda rude, in a way. "I'm not going to waste my time, but I maybe you nerds can figure out the answers for me."

Which I know is not your intent, loquacious, but I think it was the effect of the question as you posed it.
posted by occhiblu at 5:05 PM on June 18, 2006


Metachat is ready! Come on over and post about anything you damn well like. ...are you going to keep metafilter and metachat competely seperate? Can we please get a MetaChat link added to the MeFi top bars? I hear those scallywags over at MetaChat don't even require a link to make a post! Metachat is for arranging the transhippment of narcotics and suitcase nukes across international borders. If anyone has a local copy of the MeTa Theatrical Matriarch seppuku thread, please email it to me or better yet post it to Metachat. You can always use metachat for more chatty questions like these which don't belong in AskMe. Please keep metachat on metachat. Thanks.

Do I have a point? Matt and Jess aren't the only ones directing traffic to Metachat. And it's CRAZY that metachat was mentioned in Metatalk thread 4! I guess it was an idea whose time had come. Thanks DodgyGeezer.
posted by Roger Dodger at 5:12 PM on June 18, 2006


I personally don't see what the problem with the question was at all. I mean, it only takes up one question spot, and only a few are going to be debunked. It's absurd to ask that each question be posted independently, since many of them would be true, and it would take 14 years.


I really don't see what "rule" this question broke, I've never seen a "don't ask more then one question per thread" and often times more then one question is asked. This is just an extreme example.
posted by delmoi at 5:23 PM on June 18, 2006


Oh man, I was looking forward to that thread.
posted by puke & cry at 5:46 PM on June 18, 2006


The question reads like "I don't feel like using Google. Here, you people do all the work." And since it's a lot of work, it just comes across as kinda rude, in a way. "I'm not going to waste my time, but I maybe you nerds can figure out the answers for me."
Well, yes, but since AskMe is a website and not an antebellum plantation, if you don't want to look up an answer you don't have to. All of the responses were quite voluntary (as far as I know, there might be some folks who run their accounts with sweatshop labor), and no one seemed particularly butt hurt about the post existing. I'm witl Loquacious on this one, everyone was having a good time exploring myths and common cannards that float around our culture. Reading the questions and answers to the post was actually INTERESTING, as opposed to most of AskMe. Does it really all have you be questions about how to get out of leases and obscure problems with software? Can't we have just a little bit of fun?
posted by Doublewhiskeycokenoice at 5:54 PM on June 18, 2006


"Can't we have just a little bit of fun?"

Haven't been around long, have you?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 5:59 PM on June 18, 2006


Can't we have just a little bit of fun?

Take it to MetaChat, you hippie!
posted by muddgirl at 6:17 PM on June 18, 2006


I don't like "MeFi is not siteX.com" reasons for deletions. If there's something about siteX.com you don't like or don't think fits MeFi, then explain it.

Don't just say "URL1 != URL2" because we can all see that plainly, and whatever MeFi's "purpose" is, it's going to have some overlapping territory with other sites from time to time.

Also, I'm not that huge a MetaChat person, nor am I familiar with the exact terms of its upbringing, but I also find it a little presumptuous to use it as a moderation device, here.
posted by scarabic at 6:26 PM on June 18, 2006


Of course no one has to answer the question. No one has to answer any of the questions. In fact, not enforcing guidelines about what types of questions get posted is pretty much guaranteed to result in such a situation.
posted by occhiblu at 6:37 PM on June 18, 2006


Damn. Loquacious was working up to a good flame-out. What the hell went wrong?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:47 PM on June 18, 2006


someone mentioned metachat and he went all bunny on us.
posted by quonsar at 6:55 PM on June 18, 2006


Speaking up in favor of that post meriting insta-deletion, if the admins are still counting.

jessamyn, I'm left doubting your editorial objectivity. There's been so many questions and comments that you've deleted that had no need to be. Sometimes it feels like you're our own personal FCC office gone quite mad. It stinks, frankly, and I'm not sure you quite realize how many users you've annoyed with it.

You're welcome to start and admin your own Mefi-clone. Please, stop pretending that you've got some stake in all of this. And don't tell me you weren't being just a bit deliberately provocative with that post. Your anger at this would get my sympathy if it didn't feel so calculated.
posted by mkultra at 7:11 PM on June 18, 2006


I'm not that huge a MetaChat person, nor am I familiar with the exact terms of its upbringing, but I also find it a little presumptuous to use it as a moderation device, here.

And yet the Metachat about page clearly notes that it can be used "to post questions that are too basic or too general for AskMe." If Metachat doesn't mind being a "dumping ground for MeFi rejects," as loquacious put it, why is a moderator pointing folks to Metachat for some types of questions now being seen as presumptuous?
posted by mediareport at 7:30 PM on June 18, 2006


... I'm not sure you quite realize how many users you've annoyed with it.

I'm guessing one confirmed, and uhm.... 14 ⅓?
No, wait!
Ah... 74, 397? No, wait!

Dammit, where's the audience of the Price is Right when I need them?!?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 7:33 PM on June 18, 2006


Hey jessamyn? Count me as "don't give a shit" either way.
posted by Captaintripps at 7:36 PM on June 18, 2006


MetaBunny.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:44 PM on June 18, 2006


Loquacious, I love's ya (why yes, I have been drinking, want to make something of it?) but that was an annoying AskMe, a hundred maybe, on the outside. But nearly 400? That's like when someone offers to buy you a drink and you order a triple Crown Royal. Your cause would have been far better served to cherry pick the most dubious of the lot and post those for specific debunking.

Maybe we need an AsskMe for annoying questions like this one?

And I do not like the "Take it to MetaChat" either, it may not be intended as a slur but it certainly comes across as one at least some of the time. Nor am I a big fan of heavy handed moderation but I'm too busy to really notice most of the time, except when an AskMe gets posted to the Blue by mistake and then hangs out there for four or five hours.
posted by fenriq at 8:18 PM on June 18, 2006


Damn. Loquacious was working up to a good flame-out. What the hell went wrong?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:47 PM CST on June 18 [+fave] [!]


He finally found the Mr. Hands video
posted by cellphone at 8:19 PM on June 18, 2006


I thought the question was a good use of the AskMe community. People could easily answer based on their own expertise or areas of personal research, which happens all the time, and are usually considered the most helpful answers.

Example: #271. The Main Library at Indiana University sinks over an inch every year because, when it was built, engineers failed to take into account the weight of all the books that would occupy the building. (I go to IU, it's bullshit. It's a commonly repeated urban legend that is also mentioned about other schools' libraries, but IU seems to have become the most popular because of the forwarding of these e-mail lists.)

Perhaps I've been corrupted by MetaChat, where one of the cardinal rules is "Don't be an asshole." That said, loq, perhaps some of the stuff directed at jessamyn would have been better suited to a personal e-mail response, not a public forum.
posted by kyleg at 8:27 PM on June 18, 2006


If I have the rights to a 100-250 page work written in another language, and I post it to AskMe saying, "Can you translate this?" and someone does, without asking for compensation, is that a legitimate use?

(Hypothetically. Ask is not for hypotheticals, but MeTa is.)
posted by Eideteker at 8:37 PM on June 18, 2006


puke & cry : "Oh man, I was looking forward to that thread."

Me too. It was the type of question that either gets deleted quickly or ends up in the sidebar. Too bad jessamyn got to it before it got a ton of answers.
posted by Penks at 8:39 PM on June 18, 2006


some of the stuff directed at jessamyn would have been better suited to a personal e-mail response

Some of the stuff in his post was actually from my email to him, I assume this is just a public response to it.

My apologies for bothering people with the MetaChat comparison. I think MetaChat is delightful and know that loquacious has in the past taken questions there that were removed from AskMe and this seemed like another likely candidate. I meant no disrespect.

do you really want me to post each one of those questions individually? Isn't that just going to create even more noise?

It means you'll get one a week like everyone else, which seems fair.

we should let the community decide if it's not what AskMe is for by their response - rather than pre-emptively deciding for the community. If I'd been flagged, snarked at in thread or whatever, then I'd say - sure, people didn't want that here.

The point is, it was flagged. Chatty questions always get a lot of responses and a lot of flags, leaving it up to me or mathowie to decide what to do about it. I'm sorry you didn't like the way this went, but your response seems a little excessive ("your own personal FCC"? really?) and there's a great big Internet out there where you can ask your 371 questions. Just because it has a question mark at the end of it doesn't mean it's right for AskMe and mathowie and I have worked hard, with a lot of people in MetaTalk, trying to make the guidelines clear and available in case people aren't sure about things. Did you really think that question was going to fly?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 9:08 PM on June 18, 2006


While I'm sure we're not keeping score, please do feel free to count me as supporting the deletion of crap.
posted by majick at 9:16 PM on June 18, 2006


Damn. Loquacious was working up to a good flame-out. What the hell went wrong?

A six pack of Corona, six rare sirloin steaks, four grilled corn ears in husks, a whole grilled sweet onion, a bag of tortilla chips, a jar of peach-pineapple salsa, and a real charcoal BBQ and some friends to share it all with. *burp*

someone mentioned metachat and he went all bunny on us.

Typo. In, not on. They call me "Thumper".

And don't tell me you weren't being just a bit deliberately provocative with that post.

Ah, no. I was honestly curious, and I wanted to see the AskMe hivemind rip it to pieces. If I really wanted to monkeywrench AskMe - and I don't 'cause I love it and worship it - I'd post an anonymous question about fucking chickens or something.


Your anger at this would get my sympathy if it didn't feel so calculated.


Sorry, the question wasn't calculated. There's no way I can prove that, but your points about the anger being (paraphrased) misplaced are correct.

Perhaps I've been corrupted by MetaChat, where one of the cardinal rules is "Don't be an asshole." That said, loq, perhaps some of the stuff directed at jessamyn would have been better suited to a personal e-mail response, not a public forum.

Agreed.

Sorry for being a prick, Jessamyn.

Part of my overreaction was that I was honestly really looking forward to the thread and the answers, and the admonition to "take it to metachat" just irked the shit out of me.

Did you really think that question was going to fly?

Actually, yes. I wouldn't have bothered, otherwise. I thought it'd be an awesomely informative thread.

Again, sorry for flying off the handle.
posted by loquacious at 9:38 PM on June 18, 2006


Horrible question. That long list of random tidbits, most of which were Google-able, was pretty torturous.
posted by desuetude at 9:40 PM on June 18, 2006


so now what? I lost my keys and can't get home. anyone have a deck of cards or anything?
posted by shmegegge at 1:03 AM on June 19, 2006


"By some unknown means, an iguana can end its own life."

If I'm ever so bored as to write a book, this will mark the beginning and the very best part of the entire sorry screed.
posted by NinjaTadpole at 2:04 AM on June 19, 2006


Goddammit—another good flameout spoiled by a dinner with friends and a pleasant apology. Not even a rendition of "Memories."

*cries*
posted by languagehat at 6:02 AM on June 19, 2006


Look, kid, I don't take requests. Karoake night is Thursday.

Besides, only losers flame out, and if you saw these steaks you'd understand why I was so mellow. They put the moooo in mellow.
posted by loquacious at 6:10 AM on June 19, 2006


Fucking Bravo. Loquacious, you get a cookie for being a jerk and apologizing about it. You are an material example for the cocksuckers out there who don't know when to reign in the alpha-male and say they're sorry.
posted by mrmojoflying at 6:57 AM on June 19, 2006


Anyone have a photo of a bunny holding a pitchfork in one hand, and a torch in the other. But he's crying, and looks dejected because he doesn't get to use them? Maybe there's a pancake in there too... <sniff> It's so beautiful, I can see it now...
posted by blue_beetle at 7:28 AM on June 19, 2006


Ben Franklin wrote about a young social climber who would go out of his way to deliver very minor insults to people, so he could the next day make very public and graceful apologies. Soon he was one of the most highly regarded young men in Philadelphia.
posted by LarryC at 8:01 AM on June 19, 2006


So, you're saying this was all a subtle, devious plot to make loquacious look good for apologizing? The fiend!
posted by Kirth Gerson at 8:15 AM on June 19, 2006


*looks up hopefully, grabs torch just in case*
posted by languagehat at 8:47 AM on June 19, 2006


MetaFilter is naught but a den of scallywags!
posted by gigawhat? at 8:51 AM on June 19, 2006


good-looking scallywags, tho.
posted by carsonb at 8:54 AM on June 19, 2006


Such a libelous slur was uncalled for. Please accept my most devout and humble apologies, good sirs. I'll show myself the door.
posted by gigawhat? at 8:55 AM on June 19, 2006


blue_beetle, it's not a pitchfork or a torch, but it does have a certain amount of dejection..


posted by robocop is bleeding at 9:09 AM on June 19, 2006


I guess what I'm trying to say, jessamyn, is that perhaps we should let the community decide if it's not what AskMe is for by their response - rather than pre-emptively deciding for the community.
That gets really ugly really quick. Check out Yahoo!Answers to see how low the lowest common denominator is. I come to AskMe and MeFi to avoid that crap. Take no prisoners, Jessamyn! Better safe than sorry.
posted by RussHy at 9:21 AM on June 19, 2006


Damn. Loquacious was working up to a good flame-out. What the hell went wrong?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 6:47 PM PST on June 18

Are you feeling okay, EB? Your word count seems alarmingly low!
posted by Doohickie at 11:53 AM on June 19, 2006


Prepare two units of syllable fluid, STAT!
posted by Kirth Gerson at 12:24 PM on June 19, 2006


The point is, it was flagged. Chatty questions always get a lot of responses and a lot of flags, leaving it up to me or mathowie to decide what to do about it.

Sometimes, it would seem that you guys jump when something gets flagged. I'm still quite sure you make a lot of judgment calls, but you both like to attribute admin actions to "well... there were tons of flags." Personally, I think you guys both get a little lazy about using this as an excuse for deflecting responsibility. Let's be truthful: you apply your own judgment to each case. Flagging is not some kind of voting system, it's more of a notification system. If it's becoming more of a voting system, where you toss out your own judgment in response to overwhelming flagging, I'd like to hear about it. That's not what's been communicated before.

After all, the mob can flag something overwhelmingly and be wrong. They also like to favorite some of the worst threads of all en masse. Does that make those posts more worthy?

In this case, anyway, there was an editorial reason provided for the deletion. So either substantiate that, support it, or don't. But don't pull the "many flags" card (which, it must be pointed out, you can pull anytime you want, since there is no transparency into flagging numbers).
posted by scarabic at 11:52 PM on June 19, 2006


So they're either a pair of iron-fisted despots who care naught for the workaday mefite like you or I, or a fickle, mush-headed duo who hide behind the tastes and whims of the hoi polloi.

I know I'm exaggerating your point, scarabic, and this isn't directed solely towards you, but fuck people, get off their goddamn cases already.

Yesterday Jessamyn was a personal FCC gone mad, and today she is lazy? In a related story, Matt shunned a group of rednecks on his way to a tractor pull. If you are going to accuse the mods' actions of lacking consistency, it seems only fair for your arguments to possess at least an ounce of coherency, if only to protect your own credibility.

'Deflecting responsibility'?
I disagree.

Unless I'm very much mistaken and a lack of accountability means "Having a bunch of yahoos second-guess every choice you make and insult and deride you and your efforts to improve things and keep the place vital and interesting," I'm going to have to call bullshit on the lack of mod/admin accountability thing. They give reasons for deleteds, and have defended those reasons when challenged. Sometimes they even change their minds and restore them. How is that not an effecient system of policy, discourse, and action?

Would they get less shit thrown at them if, instead of saying "Well, deleted thread x had a lot of flags, and upon further perusal was a violation of the guidelines," they said, "We decided it was a violation of the guidelines. Case closed."?

I highly doubt it.

Instead of accusations of being dictators on even days and incompetents on odd days, it'd be "Matt doesn't care about the community," and "Whatever happened to self-policing?" all day, every day.
Some people should just come out and admit it: You don't want the admins to run the site, and you don't want Gen Pop running it either.
Who's left, then? Hmmm...

Flagging is self-policing. It's a MeTa bitchfest sans the vitriol and baiting and flameouts, and a "This post sucks" and "Not the best of MY web!" without derailing a thread with posturing and ego.

Do you think a transparent flag system would be a good thing? It'd be the bastard child of My Favorites and Pandora's Box, for all the trouble and petty bullshit it would cause. Besides the stuff you flag, what business is it of yours? If it gets the result you desire, swell! If not, well, I guess other mefites didn't share your point of view.
Send a polite inquiring e-mail or suck it up.

Matt and Jess go out of their way to not rock the boat and to maintain MeFi's open and egaltarian environment, to the point where it some people seem to play the ref, making absurd and disgusting accusations with impunity, knowing that should they be penalized for it, it will add the veneer of plausibilty to their otherwise flimsy as oneply ass wipe talking points.

And if you don't trust the mods to be honest, well, tough titty.
If you seriously believe that Mathowie and Jessamyn would so disrespect the people who have made MeFi what it is, why bother even coming here?
I know I wouldn't.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 1:11 AM on June 20, 2006


Well said.
posted by Roger Dodger at 5:05 AM on June 20, 2006


But don't pull the "many flags" card

loquacious said "There were a lot of favorites/comments so why remove it?" and also said "If I'd been flagged, snarked at in thread or whatever, then I'd say - sure, people didn't want that here." My response was and is "There were a lot of comments/favorites and a lot of flags. Then we had to make an admin decision" which I think is what you mean by

Let's be truthful: you apply your own judgment to each case.

So in case I wasn't clear: we apply our own judgement. On really borderline cases we consult each other and the flag queue [as in "hmm this got 17 offensive flags, I think it's funny but it's possible I'm missing something..."]. I already explained the reason for deletion here [and didn't just say "er... flags!"] and in an email to loquacious and didn't bring up flags until he did. I don't know what you're on about, but I dislike being called lazy.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:07 AM on June 20, 2006


Jessamyn and matt,

I'm sure you already realize this, but one of the cardinal rules in life is that if someone does something that someone else doesn't like, the person who doesn't like it will judge that it was wrong. So if you delete something someone likes, they will call you wrong for it. If you say it wasn't because of flags, they'll interpret you as being wrong because you haven't paid attention to the peoples' wills. If you say it was because of flags, they'll interpret you as being wrong because you have been swayed by the mob. Any reasoning you provide will probably just be used as evidence of why you were wrong.
posted by Bugbread at 6:20 AM on June 20, 2006


Are you people still here splitting hairs? Here, have a taco and a beer.

Meanwhile, the wikified version is going off like 50 kilotons of simultaneously leaping, Coca-Cola flavored, ambergris-infused peanut butter TNT. It's had a lot more responses than I ever expected, in a more readable format, and I am happy. Thanks, blag, and everyone! (Phrase coin: MeCha Turk!)

It's nearly FPP or sidebar material at this point, like Snopes all hopped up on freebased Jolt or some shit.
posted by loquacious at 6:57 AM on June 20, 2006


loquacious : "Are you people still here splitting hairs?"

You know how people go to the hairdresser/barber to get their split ends taken care of? How do you think those hairs get split, by themselves? Nuh-uh. That's my job. Long hours, but I get to travel around the world splitting hairs. My splitting hairs here at MeFi is just due to my inability to leave my work behind.
posted by Bugbread at 7:37 AM on June 20, 2006


I knew there had to be someone to blame for keeping me from attaining flowingly luxurious waist-length hippy hair. You bastard.

You owe me at least a dozen gorgeous hippy girls, a few hundred rounds of hack, three miracles, two lids, a can, a ten strip and no job.
posted by loquacious at 8:05 AM on June 20, 2006


Though, these days I'll settle for an ice cold spicy veggie burrito, a fifth of Tito's and a pack of Rolaid's soft chews.
posted by loquacious at 8:07 AM on June 20, 2006


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