Fortuitou.us April 30, 2007 10:51 PM   Subscribe

Our dear leader has started a new website.
posted by gen to MetaFilter-Related at 10:51 PM (188 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

Tight. I like the semi-transparency above the footer.

Subscribed!
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:57 PM on April 30, 2007


w00t!
posted by slogger at 11:10 PM on April 30, 2007


stavrosthewonderchicken: "I like the semi-transparency above the footer."

Seconded.
posted by Effigy2000 at 11:25 PM on April 30, 2007


I don't. I tried clicking the link on the page linked that lead to the inaugural post, but the overlay didn't let me. This was only exacerbated by my scroll wheel not working. I had to use the physical scrollbar!

With that said, I liked the content and I'll keep reading. I love the fact that my RSS reader removes any site-specific breakage.
posted by bkudria at 11:34 PM on April 30, 2007


Beautiful, I'm lovin' the Georgia.
posted by theiconoclast31 at 11:37 PM on April 30, 2007


Ooo... I see it's packaged with wholesome Web 2.0tm goodness .
posted by spiderskull at 12:05 AM on May 1, 2007


(That said, I've just subscribed to it myself).
posted by spiderskull at 12:06 AM on May 1, 2007


Yeah, it probably only works in firefox given all the lame hacks, so RSS is a better way to go. The content in the next few weeks might be kind of narrow (a lot of stuff about accounting) so don't get your hopes up. :)
posted by mathowie (staff) at 12:13 AM on May 1, 2007


Safari seems to like it too. Sweeet.
posted by furiousthought at 12:27 AM on May 1, 2007


Works in Opera.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:49 AM on May 1, 2007


The link to Transmit is bad - other than that, hysterically awesome.
posted by Jofus at 1:07 AM on May 1, 2007


Shouldn't this be posted to Projects?
Nothing like a nibble at the hand that feeds you :D
posted by Abiezer at 1:12 AM on May 1, 2007


I await the day when someone can recreate Textmate in a browser window, complete with code bundles, syntax coloring, and ftp/ssh support to pull files in from remote servers.

Is this the sort of thing you mean?

(Someone probably said that weeks ago, making me look like an unbearable, clueless jackass. But then, I am, so I'm all "flaunt it, baby, flaunt it!" So.

As you were.)
posted by Grangousier at 2:10 AM on May 1, 2007


I posted more about the thrust behind the site on my first entry here.

Not sure yet what it's about, matt, but you had me at "thrust."
posted by rob511 at 2:37 AM on May 1, 2007


Yeah, I love the translucent text.

If you think I'm gonna pay another five dollars for that shit, though, you couldn't be more wrong.
posted by OmieWise at 4:33 AM on May 1, 2007 [3 favorites]


He's leaving us!
posted by LarryC at 4:52 AM on May 1, 2007


The transparent thing scares me. :(

It puts words over words.
posted by liquorice at 4:54 AM on May 1, 2007


Psst, Matt: 10/16/2006.
posted by brownpau at 5:08 AM on May 1, 2007


So where are these ten failures buried? Show me the bone pile!
posted by prostyle at 5:59 AM on May 1, 2007


Neat! Though seconding the annoyance at unclickability of footer links—within five seconds, the site had done something Puzzling And Wrong, which is a pretty bad idea.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:16 AM on May 1, 2007


The first sentence currently on the site: "If your business is based on the web, it pays to do as much of your management and development with web apps yourself." is a sentence fragment. I think "as you can" should be added at the end, or directly after "as much".
posted by Bugbread at 6:32 AM on May 1, 2007


Me likey. Make the semi-transparent things clickable, and you're off to the races.
posted by chuckdarwin at 6:33 AM on May 1, 2007


Also, the link to "Transmit" is malformed: you're missing a colon.
posted by Bugbread at 6:35 AM on May 1, 2007


From this:

If your business is based on the web, it pays to do as much of your management and development with web apps yourself. With something like Google Browser Sync, you can move from your computer to any other computer on earth and pick up right where you left off.

If you're a windows or Linux person, You can buy a hosted server and use windows terminal services or VNC to connect, and still use most of your local desktop apps (I'd be leary of trying to use photoshop this way, and certainly video editing is out) but it's certainly a possibility. I'd much rather work that way then deal with all these random web apps.
posted by delmoi at 6:41 AM on May 1, 2007


Also, in firefox 2.0(.0.3) The 'fortuitus' logo on the footer somehow manages to appear on top of the scrollbar. It's very strange.

screenshot
posted by delmoi at 6:48 AM on May 1, 2007


I love that I read the about page and the 25 comments posted and I still don't know what this site is. It is a personal blog of matt's? Is it a company? Does it do something? I understand there's a party here I'm not invited to but one or two declarative statements would help.
posted by neustile at 6:56 AM on May 1, 2007




I love it. Sweet design, Matt.

posted by IronLizard at 7:01 AM on May 1, 2007


It is a personal blog of matt's?

Yes
posted by IronLizard at 7:02 AM on May 1, 2007


You need a bigger screen, delmoi.
posted by IronLizard at 7:03 AM on May 1, 2007


neustile writes "I still don't know what this site is. It is a personal blog of matt's? Is it a company? Does it do something?"

It's a blog of Matt's, which is intended to provide information and advice regarding making a living off of blogging/websites. Things like what laws affect you, how to handle setting yourself up as a limited liability company, accounting things that would affect you, advice on helpful techniques, useful software, things to beware of, etc.

delmoi writes "Also, in firefox 2.0(.0.3) The 'fortuitus' logo on the footer somehow manages to appear on top of the scrollbar. It's very strange. "

Huh. I got that too, because I keep the Sage sidebar open on Firefox, making my viewing window narrower than the usual full-screen resolution.
posted by Bugbread at 7:18 AM on May 1, 2007



So where are these ten failures buried? Show me the bone pile!

You're reading one, ass-munch! [/Beavis & Butthead]

Anyway, good stuff, thanks Matt. My wife and I are launching an online/offline venture later this year and I'm sure you've got a lot of useful/hysterical insight. One of the things we're concentrating on in building our site is reaching a balance between "anyone can do it" and "it can do anything", if you know what I mean.
posted by Mister_A at 7:20 AM on May 1, 2007


I tried clicking the link on the page linked that lead to the inaugural post, but the overlay didn't let me.

Ditto, re: transparency. Sacrificing utility for "ooh pretty" = not recommended.
posted by cribcage at 7:24 AM on May 1, 2007


Nice, subscribed. Don't shy away from boring, technical server and hosting stuff too, it's always good hearing about the industry from the other end.
posted by Skorgu at 7:26 AM on May 1, 2007


There is absolutely nothing about forts here.
Advise, please?
posted by Dizzy at 7:36 AM on May 1, 2007 [1 favorite]


From your About page: I'm a hobbyist turned designer turned developer that who eventually got to quit my day job and support myself with my projects.
posted by iconomy at 7:48 AM on May 1, 2007 [1 favorite]


"I love that I read the about page and the 25 comments posted and I still don't know what this site is. It is a personal blog of matt's? Is it a company? Does it do something?"

It's web 2.0! It doesn't have to do anything! Don't you see the transparency, gradients and rounded corners? Invest now!
posted by klangklangston at 7:50 AM on May 1, 2007 [3 favorites]


While we're all doing QA testing for you, I may as well point out that the "Comments" link on each post goes to #comments, but there is no corresponding anchor in the comments section, so users still have to scroll down.
posted by Partial Law at 8:00 AM on May 1, 2007


that hole by the forest service road, that was a really good hole.
posted by quonsar at 8:00 AM on May 1, 2007 [2 favorites]


It took me over a minute to figure out what the site was about, too. Might not be a problem for its target audience, but it might alienate casual readers. Perhaps a clearer "...a blog about doing business online" type statement for those of us with goldfish attention spans?

Sweet design though, and I'll definitely be following it.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:11 AM on May 1, 2007


Also, the first paragraph of the latest entry (...every friend with a cellphone is simply a direct Twitter message away, my bookmarks are in del.icio.us...) kind of reads like the first few minutes of that Carlin routine.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:14 AM on May 1, 2007


hehe... using your user base for QA testing is always a nice thing ;)

Love the design (viva transparency!) and the content looks swell, too. I love it when people share their best practices and experiences - it really helps people just starting out *and* the old geezers among us as well. Would that more people did it. Kudos for starting this out... looking forward to following the adventures.

*added to Bloglines, coz I don't dig that Google reader hype*
posted by rmm at 8:22 AM on May 1, 2007


Hmm, Ryan helps Matt out with his new site and suddenly he gets the sack.

I hope you're happy now, Matt. :)
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:51 AM on May 1, 2007


Finally. Mathowie: the man, the myth, the memoirs!
posted by scarabic at 9:25 AM on May 1, 2007


Cool, but this also ads to my feeling of being on a swelling bubble.
posted by Good Brain at 9:45 AM on May 1, 2007


Where do I sent my $5?
posted by psmealey at 9:47 AM on May 1, 2007


td blurg
posted by psmealey at 9:48 AM on May 1, 2007


Now how do I quit my job just reading someone elses site all day?
posted by French Fry at 9:50 AM on May 1, 2007 [1 favorite]


All the fun of first year financial accounting with all the sparkle of contract law.
posted by geoff. at 9:59 AM on May 1, 2007


So metafilter has this klunky homebrew look and feel.
But Matts weblog is all gradients, rounded corners, punny domain name and logo that does not consist of just letters.
Ok, it's clear: daddy has started a new family, he does not love us anymore!
posted by jouke at 11:05 AM on May 1, 2007 [1 favorite]


Ok, it's clear: daddy has started a new family, he does not love us anymore!

*runs away from home and joins circus* : >
posted by amberglow at 11:31 AM on May 1, 2007 [1 favorite]


But Matts weblog is all gradients, rounded corners, punny domain name and logo that does not consist of just letters.

White background too. Very hawt.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:11 PM on May 1, 2007


More professional.
posted by cillit bang at 12:22 PM on May 1, 2007


*runs away from home and joins circus*

Yeah, you go waste your substance with riotous living. Just leave us to provide for our siblings and when you return he will be all fatted-calf-slaughtering for you.
:-(

letterscharacters
sorry for the dutchism/archaism
posted by jouke at 12:37 PM on May 1, 2007


More professional.

9 out of 10 anonymous interjerks agree.
posted by Mister_A at 12:39 PM on May 1, 2007


9 out of 10 anonymous interjerks agree

these interjerks, they have pink shirts and microphones?
posted by quonsar at 1:23 PM on May 1, 2007


Natch, quonsar.
posted by Mister_A at 2:05 PM on May 1, 2007


letterscharacters
sorry for the dutchism/archaism


Methinks "letters" is just fine.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 3:47 PM on May 1, 2007


You need a bigger screen, delmoi.

I don't normally have browser windows filling my screen. It kind of defeats the purpose of a windowed OS, don't you think?

Anyway, regardless of size, websites are supposed to stay firmly behind the scrollbar.
posted by delmoi at 7:19 PM on May 1, 2007


Sure, but 800x600? Windows work best when you open them a bit wider.
posted by IronLizard at 7:23 PM on May 1, 2007


Huh. The logo-over-scrollbar thingy does not happen on the current Mac version of Firefox, fwiw.
posted by furiousthought at 8:58 PM on May 1, 2007


I am absolutely not a fan of the transparency (thought something was going wrong with my eyesight) but I do very much enjoy the fact that you've picked a domain name that there are so many ways to get wrong :-)
posted by flabdablet at 9:15 PM on May 1, 2007


Initial reaction:

Your design is completely unusable. Take it's pretty, but useless, ass out back and shoot it.

It does not work like any other site on the net. Lower right hand corner to get to the home page? (or alternately extremely small, low-contrast text, in a stealth nav bar.)

Nobody wants to learn how to use your website. It should be obvious.

This is the sound of 50% of your visitors leaving after reading one or zero articles because of the design flaws.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 10:10 PM on May 1, 2007


Tacos, I don't much care. I'm writing to kinda get a bunch of ideas out of my head and anyone intrigued by the subject will just subscribe to the feed and read it as they see fit.

PVRblog has about 10,000 web visits a day, but 70,000 RSS visits. Among a tech-savvy audience, anyone that feels the site gets in the way will simply follow in a feedreader.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 10:13 PM on May 1, 2007


I figured you'd say something like that.

You don't care about your users. You know you're popular, and as such you can host on an unreliable server, or put off people who stumble into your blog via google.

It's a prime example of why you're making about 50% of what you should be. (Probably Less.)

Though I guess you can make up for your lost profits by paying Jessamyn in gift cards.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 10:16 PM on May 1, 2007


(that was snarkier than it should have been, but it's true. you screw yourself harder than you screw any of us, excepting perhaps jessamyn, who is about a million times too nice.)
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 10:20 PM on May 1, 2007


You don't care about your users. You know you're popular

Naw, I think you're misinterpreting things a bit. This site has no advertising on it, doesn't create any revenue for me. I didn't think too many people would follow it since I don't generally consider the number of people blogging for a living to be large. My goals with the site aren't to grow as big as possible as fast as possible.

It's really a niche thing about how I found an accountant, why I think SEO is bullshit, and how to handle talking to the press (just a few future essay ideas). Since it's a niche thing, I can play with the design much more than I can with mefi or pvrblog or anything else, which does benefit from having more users and more pageviews, etc.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 10:32 PM on May 1, 2007


I'm not a Web 2.0 businessman, but I am a businessman in real life, even though I play the part of a troll in real life.

Your current job is to do stuff on the web. There are a lot of ways to make money off of this: direct revenue like user contributions ($5!), indirect revenue like advertising, and affiliations.

Those streams aren't affected if you choose to make an unusable design.

Another way to make money off of this stuff is to become sufficiently expert that you're qualified to assist other businesses, write books, give talks, etc. Those streams get dryer every time you make an unusable site, be it because the site is unavailable, or because the design broke all current usability guidelines.

So like I said, it doesn't really hurt me when you screw things up. MeFi has sufficient mass that you aren't going to starve for the foreseeable future. (I'm not a web pro, but I'd be surprised if you're making less than $100-150k/year from it.)

Obviously it's your own decision if you want to minimize your audience, but that just strikes me as being wildly counterintuitive, for a guy whose most valuable assets are a few web properties, and his name.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 10:58 PM on May 1, 2007


err, I play the part of a troll online. In real life, I am fucking tired.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 10:59 PM on May 1, 2007


And that, ladies and gentlemen, is an object lesson in why I dislike sockpuppets.

You are much politer to driveby hecklers than I'd ever be able to be, mathowie. Good on ya.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:02 PM on May 1, 2007


I'm not giving you cake until you drink
a big glass of Be Nice, Taco.
posted by Dizzy at 11:04 PM on May 1, 2007


Nobody wants to learn how to use your website. It should be obvious.

I'm not a fan of the design either, but Matt has a built in audience. He can bend the rules a little bit and get away with it. I do find it amusing that a site with tips on making it on the web is so user unfriendly, but hey, it's pretty.

I didn't think too many people would follow it

You had to know waxy and kottke would link to you. Seems like that will keep it more than a niche site for at least a while.
posted by justgary at 11:35 PM on May 1, 2007


fortuitous MetaFilter: for every success there are ten failures
posted by UbuRoivas at 12:05 AM on May 2, 2007


stavros: mathowie trades on his name and a few sites.

I think he's smart enough to realize that he's better served by recognizing that I made a large number of objective criticisms, and this outweighs the value of getting all stupid-mad because some guy on the Internet was brusque and snarky.

Even if he disagrees with my assessment that he doesn't care about his users, I'm sure he knows that a lot of people think the same way.

And hey, I'm not the one who pays employees in gift cards. I just report the news, I don't make it.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 12:09 AM on May 2, 2007


Yeah, well, constructive criticism is good. Being a bit of a dick while delivering it, not so much.

Just my opinion. Doesn't seem like Matt was offended, and I'm not bothered other than very mildly, by the brazen rudeness of it. Hell, if I got upset every time I saw people being needlessly rude, I'd be The Most Upset Guy In The World, and nobody wants to be that. Not me, anyway.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 12:18 AM on May 2, 2007


What's this about gift cards?
posted by timeistight at 12:50 AM on May 2, 2007


I'm with stav.

Tacos- if your comments are anything close to your business demeanor, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't be doing business with you. You may have constructive criticism but the delivery is as important as the message itself- sometimes the delivery is more important than the message.
posted by gen at 1:30 AM on May 2, 2007


if he's such a successful businessman, and so tired in real life because of that success, why does he waste time writing unsolicited assholish business advice on the Internet?
posted by matteo at 2:37 AM on May 2, 2007 [1 favorite]


so jessamyn = good; mathowie = bad is the new meme?

* updates rant generator accordingly *
posted by Saucy Intruder at 5:21 AM on May 2, 2007


Tacos Are Pretty Great writes "Obviously it's your own decision if you want to minimize your audience, but that just strikes me as being wildly counterintuitive, for a guy whose most valuable assets are a few web properties, and his name."

Mathowie: "I am a professional oil painter, and make my living from selling my paintings. On weekends, I photoshop pictures of cats for fun."

Tacos: "I am a businessman, and it strikes me as wildly counterintuitive for you to do something for fun when you could do it a way you don't want to and make money instead."

Bugbread: "I am a tech lackey, and it strikes me as wildly counterintuitive for you (Tacos) to be giving free advice to mathowie when instead you could be making money as a consultant."

Sometimes people just do stuff for fun without payment. Life is not just a string of attempts to make income.
posted by Bugbread at 5:32 AM on May 2, 2007 [4 favorites]


quonsar: i am a borked foonlet, and it strikes me as wildly counterintuitive for you to dig a hole by the forest service road when you could be saying smock.
posted by quonsar at 6:26 AM on May 2, 2007 [1 favorite]


Man, sometimes I complain about assholish behavior on mefi, and someone will make a compelling counterargument defending the merits of a measure of unchecked brusqueness in semi-anonymous discourse and I'll reconsider my position. Does everything need to be nicey-nice all day long? Are there not situations in which an unmitigated rebuke helps to contain a situation? What's the proper fulcrum between civility and honesty? Etc. I can appreciate the nuance. Helps me stay calibrated.

And then someone else will just act like an asshole without any merit or justification and remind me why I think people should show a little goddam class in the first place.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:29 AM on May 2, 2007


Sometimes people just do stuff for fun without payment. Life is not just a string of attempts to make income.

A-fucking-men!
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 6:30 AM on May 2, 2007


metafilter: a compelling counterargument defending the merits of a measure of unchecked brusqueness in semi-anonymous discourse.
posted by quonsar at 6:38 AM on May 2, 2007 [1 favorite]


And hey, I'm not the one who pays employees in gift cards. I just report the news, I don't make it.

Tacos, what the fuck are you talking about? I've never paid anyone using gift cards in my life. I don't mind your snarky advice, but if you're going to walk around talking shit making it sound like I run slave labor and give people pointless store credit as reimbursement, you're way off.

I gave her an ipod as a gift once when she lost hers and I gave her a $50 iTunes last xmas but those were gifts, given in addition to the salary I pay her (and the computer equipment I furnish her with).

Perhaps you misinterpreted her mentioning that she once got a gift from me, but it's not how I pay anyone. I would never do anything so unprofessional.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 7:28 AM on May 2, 2007


So, mathowie, since you're hoarding all those gift cards, instead of giving them out to your employees, how about swinging some my way?

And where can they be used, anyway? The nearest MetaFilter store was the one out on I-10, but it looks like that closed down. I don't want to have to drive to the MetaFilter Outlet store in Austin; sure, it's newer, and it has a bigger parking lot, but the general manager, Ralph, is an asshole.
posted by Bugbread at 7:55 AM on May 2, 2007 [1 favorite]


At his own behest, cortex gets paid in gift cards. TO THE THREE WISE MEN'S SEX EMPORIUM*

*note: this is probably a lie, but it wouldn't surprise anyone
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:05 AM on May 2, 2007


you get a 10% discount on gift card purchases is what makes it such a cherry deal
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:08 AM on May 2, 2007


so to speak
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:08 AM on May 2, 2007


cortex writes "you get a 10% discount on gift card purchases is what makes it such a cherry deal"

Sweet.

Get a $100 gift card.
Use it to buy an $111.11 gift card ($100 after 10% discount).
Rinse, repeat.
After 100 iterations, you have a $3,764,861.95 gift card.
posted by Bugbread at 8:15 AM on May 2, 2007


I would never do anything so unprofessional

Thank fuck the site has a white background or this would be less believable.
posted by peacay at 8:21 AM on May 2, 2007


Hey I like the site. The transparency isn't something I see every day, and it's not like the site is so wide and deep that I can't possibly find what I'm looking for. I think some of the criticism lobbed at the site is the result of petty jealousy, and some comes from self-appointed web design experts who would "never" do something like this.

There are like three things on the fucking page, people, and the bottom nav bar is static - it never goes anywhere. You know how long it took me to figure out how to use this site? Zero seconds. It's completely intuitive in its current configuration. Simplicity is the soul of elegance, and this site has that quality.

One thing that I like about it is that it has a "print" feel to it but without being dreaded deadly brochure ware. The site speaks to me in a familiar idiom. I just don't get what people don't get about this. There may be some issues re: browser compatibility, but they'll get sorted (I'm on Win XP//FF 2.0 and no problems).

I'm not just writing this to suck up; the fact is that I really, really, really enjoy yelling at people. On the other hand, if Mathowie wants to gift me with a cool sockpuppet acct. like "Mister_A 2.0" or "Mister_B", I wouldn't turn it down.
posted by Mister_A at 8:48 AM on May 2, 2007


#ffffff bg-colour joke aside, I agree with Mister_A. It's nice and clean and does what it's supposed to, and I honestly look forward to reading it. Cheers, mathowie!

And jeers to Tacos, who comes across more as an embittered HR drone who barely made it a third of the way through Web Marketing For Dummies than any sort of professional businessman.

If you're tired, try going to bed instead of posting shit.

Gift e-cards can be sent to the e-mail in profile.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 10:21 AM on May 2, 2007


I like the semi-transparency above the footer.

That's what she said.
posted by jefbla at 10:23 AM on May 2, 2007


"if he's such a successful businessman, and so tired in real life because of that success, why does he waste time writing unsolicited assholish business advice on the Internet?"

Because he's DRIVEN TO SUCCEED! Obviously, such successful advice from such a successful businessman can't be turned on and off like a faucet. That's why consultants are usually kept in cages while under contract, lest they spew their brilliance publicly and inadvertantly aid the competition.
Jeez, don't you know anything about business?
posted by klangklangston at 10:30 AM on May 2, 2007


And is this the same Tacos that was banned before?
posted by klangklangston at 10:31 AM on May 2, 2007


Tacos, what the fuck are you talking about? I've never paid anyone using gift cards in my life. I don't mind your snarky advice, but if you're going to walk around talking shit making it sound like I run slave labor and give people pointless store credit as reimbursement, you're way off.

I apologize if my information is incorrect, but I've been told that for a significant period of time, Jessamyn received no compensation outside of christmas "gifts".

That basically you thought it was such an honor to be the #2 on MetaFilter, that financial compensation was unnecessary.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 10:52 AM on May 2, 2007


And is this the same Tacos that was banned before?

Yes.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 10:53 AM on May 2, 2007


Working on getting a second ban, are you?
posted by Mister_A at 10:58 AM on May 2, 2007


Mathowie: "I am a professional oil painter, and make my living from selling my paintings. On weekends, I photoshop pictures of cats for fun."

Let me correct that:

mathowie: I am professional web guy. On weekends, I make websites that are hard to use.

My point is that because his hobby is public, attached to his name and in the same field as his primary business, it needs to be done well. Failure to do this makes it very hard to tell if he truly understands his own business.

And I will fully admit that my anti-Matt bias is wrongly grounded, if it's untrue that he spent significant time paying Jessamyn with nothing but Christmas "gifts". That always struck me as an exceptional abuse of her kindness.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 11:01 AM on May 2, 2007


Working on getting a second ban, are you?

I don't much care either way. If I was wrong about him spending a long period of time compensating her with nothing but a Christmas gift, I deserve to eat some serious humble pie, and would be just as happy to do so in private.

<shrug>
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 11:04 AM on May 2, 2007


Christ, what a taco.
posted by Dizzy at 11:05 AM on May 2, 2007


I apologize if my information is incorrect, but I've been told that for a significant period of time, Jessamyn received no compensation outside of christmas "gifts". That basically you thought it was such an honor to be the #2 on MetaFilter, that financial compensation was unnecessary.

Totally and completely false. Who came up with this shit?

I've been paying her for over a year and a half. It's now a living wage on the order of thousands per month. On this past xmas eve, I gave her a $50 iTunes gift via email, but it was one friend giving a small gift to another friend.

I would never "pay" people with bullshit gift certificates they can't pay the rent with and I'm pissed that people are repeating this nonsense as if it's true.

Who specifically told you this?
posted by mathowie (staff) at 11:08 AM on May 2, 2007


So you have an example of your own, Taco? Oh wait, it's not that horrid flash thing in your profile, is it? It makes my eyes hurt.
posted by IronLizard at 11:11 AM on May 2, 2007


You don't have to explain anything to this jealous little twit, Matt.
posted by Mister_A at 11:13 AM on May 2, 2007


Who specifically told you this?

I Love Tacos told him.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:15 AM on May 2, 2007


Dateline 1.5 years ago:

The site is making enough money that you are considering quitting your day job, but Jessamyn was not yet being paid.

Am I missing something, or are we just arguing over how long of a period there was, where you were taking in significant profit, without giving anything to Jessamyn?
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 11:16 AM on May 2, 2007


I will fully admit that my anti-Matt bias is wrongly grounded, if it's untrue that he spent significant time paying Jessamyn with nothing but Christmas "gifts". That always struck me as an exceptional abuse of her kindness.

Please do. I spend a lot of time, money, and effort doing things on the up and up (which is why I have a bunch of accoutant/lawyer/etc experience). It's why I setup MeFi as a LLC, why jessamyn's laptop is a business equipment expense on my end, why I'm researching healthcare for employees down the line. I'm doing everything right and making sure everyone that helps out here gets paid and treated fairly and that I'm running a real business, not some bullshit goofball outfit that I hide from the IRS or abuse volunteer labor.

It's not just ridiculous to see what you've claimed I do, it actually harms "the business" and makes me look like an abusive asshole when I spend a shitload of time doing the opposite.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 11:20 AM on May 2, 2007


Tacos, answer this question: Who told you she gets paid in gift cards?

Am I missing something, or are we just arguing over how long of a period there was, where you were taking in significant profit, without giving anything to Jessamyn?

And looking at my accounting, my earliest payment to Jessamyn is in January of 2006, 16 months ago. That's close enough to "a year and a half".

Fuck you if you aren't going to apologize for being an asshole spouting falsehoods.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 11:24 AM on May 2, 2007




Perhaps it's wrongly grounded, perhaps not, but I'll voluntarily take a walk for a while either way.

It was irresponsible and bloggerish of me to publish a rumor about your employee's wages (even though you later confirmed that it was true until 1.5 years ago).

If there's some sort of strange explanation for how the MeFi cash flow could instantaneously jump from "insufficient to pay anybody" to "sufficient to pay mathowie on a full-time basis, as well as give a wage to jessamyn", I'd love to hear it, but I don't think there is one. I still think you had a significant period of time where you were taking a few thousand+/month, and giving nothing to Jessamyn.

That said, further public discussion bears no positive outcomes, so I'm going to take a walk from your grounds now.

This thread was the wrong place for this discussion, and that was entirely my fault.

so Matt, If you want to discuss anything further, contact me via e-mail.

posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 11:28 AM on May 2, 2007


Tacos, what's your point here?
posted by OmieWise at 11:30 AM on May 2, 2007


Tacos Are Pretty Great writes "My point is that because his hobby is public, attached to his name and in the same field as his primary business, it needs to be done well."

My point is that it needs to be done well if his interest in profitability is greater than his interest in playing around with UI, and that it doesn't need to be done well if his interest in playing around with UI is greater than his interest in profitability.

You seem to be neglecting the probability that Matt could make $0 by making all his sites bad UI playgrounds, $X by making some good and some play, and $2X by making them all good, and that he might actually prefer to play a little and make $X than not play and make $2X.
posted by Bugbread at 11:31 AM on May 2, 2007


Oh, your point is that you're a sanctimonious prick.
posted by OmieWise at 11:31 AM on May 2, 2007


Horse dead.
Why Taco beat?
posted by Dizzy at 11:32 AM on May 2, 2007


That said, further public discussion bears no positive outcomes

Particularly when one of the participants in the discussion has no fucking idea what he's talking about.
posted by psmealey at 11:32 AM on May 2, 2007


E-mail him an E-libel suit is what you ought to do. I hear you know a good lawyer ;)
posted by Mister_A at 11:32 AM on May 2, 2007


Tacos Are Pretty Great writes "I still think you had a significant period of time where you were taking a few thousand+/month, and giving nothing to Jessamyn."

And?

When the topic of moderation first came up, I was thinking that I might want to volunteer to moderate. I didn't. But I was willing to do it, for free. Would it have made Matt some sort of evil hobgoblin if I'd offered to do it for free and he took me up on my offer?

Telling someone you'll pay them and not paying them? Bad. But I have heard nothing, whatsoever, from anyone, indicating that this is the case. All we've got is "Jessamyn has been a moderator for almost 2.5 years. She's been paid for 1.5 years. Therefore Matt is evil, because...uh...well, because he is."
posted by Bugbread at 11:38 AM on May 2, 2007


even though you later confirmed that it was true until 1.5 years ago

Is this your apology? Another fucking lie? I told you I gave her one fucking gift certificate on December 24, 2006, just a few months ago that was completely unrelated to the pay she received for the year previous to that. So it's not confirmed true at all. It's fucking false.

If there's some sort of strange explanation for how the MeFi cash flow could instantaneously jump from "insufficient to pay anybody" to "sufficient to pay mathowie on a full-time basis, as well as give a wage to jessamyn", I'd love to hear it, but I don't think there is one. I still think you had a significant period of time where you were taking a few thousand+/month, and giving nothing to Jessamyn.

Jessamyn started volunteering at the start of 2005. It was a little here and there in between her library day job. I started sending her money in late 2005 and made sure it was official pay in January 2006.

Man, this is looking less and less like that apology you promised upthread. Seriously, if you're going to keep grinding instead of admitting you were wrong and keep claiming I fuck people over, you might as well not return to the site. And again, I'm all ears on who said I pay people with non-money.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 11:38 AM on May 2, 2007


That said, further public discussion bears no positive outcomes, so I'm going to take a walk from your grounds now this Standing Up On My Hind Legs Talking Shit Shtick has sort of blown up in my face and doesn't seem to be the Favorited By... windfall I thought it'd be.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:41 AM on May 2, 2007 [2 favorites]


Man, that guy makes me so mad.
posted by Catfry at 11:41 AM on May 2, 2007


dot
posted by Mister_A at 11:44 AM on May 2, 2007


and would be just as happy to do so in private.

As opposed to spreading slanderous shit, which you're just as happy to do in public. C,WAA.
posted by languagehat at 11:44 AM on May 2, 2007 [1 favorite]


Any truth to the rumor that cortex is paid in discarded soybean hulls upon which the cat has peed?
posted by Mister_A at 11:51 AM on May 2, 2007 [1 favorite]


Tacos Are Pretty Great is a sockpuppet, right? Wonder who runs it.
posted by furiousthought at 11:52 AM on May 2, 2007


mathowie writes "Is this your apology? Another fucking lie? I told you I gave her one fucking gift certificate on December 24, 2006, just a few months ago that was completely unrelated to the pay she received for the year previous to that. So it's not confirmed true at all. It's fucking false."

Matt, Taco is off the deep-end here, but I think you misread that particular phrase of his. When he says "It was true until 1.5 years ago", I think he's talking about the "you didn't pay" part, not the "you gave gifts" part. As you said, it is true that you didn't pay her at the start, but that's because she was volunteering.

It's no big deal, but I'd rather you be mad at Taco for the right reasons than something which I think you may have misread.
posted by Bugbread at 11:54 AM on May 2, 2007


I have it on good authority that Tacos is the dishwasher at a local restaurant.
posted by IronLizard at 11:55 AM on May 2, 2007


Taco Bell has dishes?
posted by psmealey at 11:58 AM on May 2, 2007


It was wholly wrong of me to bring up financial matters.

Doubly so when I am not in a position of financial oversight for the MetaFilter Network.

It would be best if all of my posts could simply be redacted, to exclude all references to financial dealings.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 11:58 AM on May 2, 2007


furiousthought writes "Tacos Are Pretty Great is a sockpuppet, right? Wonder who runs it."

I Love Tacos
posted by Bugbread at 12:02 PM on May 2, 2007


bugbread, here's how I read it: "It was irresponsible and bloggerish of me to publish a rumor about your employee's wages"

refers to this rumor: "I apologize if my information is incorrect, but I've been told that for a significant period of time, Jessamyn received no compensation outside of christmas "gifts"." which tacos repeats several times in thread. The suggestion that gifts were given in lieu of payment is extremely defamatory, we all agree, and that is the allegation that is repeated several times in thread, only later softened to "Well, you weren't paying her".
posted by Mister_A at 12:03 PM on May 2, 2007


oh. duh. That'd be the obvious guess, wouldn't it?
posted by furiousthought at 12:04 PM on May 2, 2007


Mister_A: Good point. I got kinda caught up googling when Jess started, so I lost track of the initial argument and was more focussed on the "how long did she volunteer" part. Mea culpe.
posted by Bugbread at 12:11 PM on May 2, 2007


It would be best if all of my posts could simply be redacted, to exclude all references to financial dealings I would just STFU.
posted by languagehat at 12:16 PM on May 2, 2007


Tacos, your response sounds like a cop-out.

You've never admitted your claim was false even though you said you would.

You didn't really apologize for anything you've said, just that you're sorry you dragged financial matters into public.

You've completely lost any respect I had for you.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 12:17 PM on May 2, 2007


You've never admitted your claim was false even though you said you would.

I said I would do so if it turned out to be false. It turned out to be solely a difference of perspective.

I think it's hugely unethical to accept volunteers to staff a for-profit corporation. Others may disagree.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 12:32 PM on May 2, 2007


A banned member expounding on ethics via his sock puppet account is sort of like the ugly guy in the bar who critiques the appearance of every woman who walks past him.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:44 PM on May 2, 2007


Yeah, but Jess got back-dated stock options, so she's pretty much set.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 12:44 PM on May 2, 2007


I still think you had a significant period of time where you were taking a few thousand+/month, and giving nothing to Jessamyn.

I have back dated sock puppet options actually. I don't mean to be flip, but my money business isn't really anyone's concern. If you prefer to think of me as a princess-in-exile with a palace and a yacht instead of some hippie in Vermont with few if any material needs, feel free. I will say

- I've always been pretty set with how mathowie and I work out money stuff. I'm racking my brain thinking if I could have said something to someone that implied otherwise. We have a mutual aid arrangement that suits both of us.
- I never got trinket-type stuff in lieu of income when what I wanted was income.
- I still haven't spent my $50 gift certificate
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 12:56 PM on May 2, 2007 [1 favorite]


You're so oppressed by the man you don't even know it. That makes me sick!
posted by OmieWise at 1:10 PM on May 2, 2007


Tacos Are Pretty Great writes "I said I would do so if it turned out to be false. It turned out to be solely a difference of perspective."

Let's review:

Tacos Are Pretty Great writes "I've been told that for a significant period of time, Jessamyn received no compensation outside of christmas 'gifts'."

Tacos Are Pretty Great writes "And I will fully admit that my anti-Matt bias is wrongly grounded, if it's untrue that he spent significant time paying Jessamyn with nothing but Christmas 'gifts'."

Tacos Are Pretty Great writes "If I was wrong about him spending a long period of time compensating her with nothing but a Christmas gift, I deserve to eat some serious humble pie, and would be just as happy to do so in private."

mathowie writes "I've been paying her for over a year and a half. It's now a living wage on the order of thousands per month. On this past xmas eve, I gave her a $50 iTunes gift via email"

So he gave her a gift card while he was paying her.

Sure, I suppose you don't need to apologize because it's just a "difference of perspective". Much like you're not wrong if you say that 2 + 2 = 5 in Euclidean geometry, it's just a difference of perspective. My mom is also the President of the United States, and humans obtain most of their protein from eating RFID chips.
posted by Bugbread at 1:21 PM on May 2, 2007


I think it's hugely unethical to accept volunteers to staff a for-profit corporation. Others may disagree.

She wasn't doing it for the corporation. She was doing it for us.
posted by IronLizard at 1:24 PM on May 2, 2007


I know it's a bit bloggerish to say, jessamyn, but would you consider back dating my sock puppet sometime? It's been my lifelong goal to marry a princess.
posted by and hosted from Uranus at 1:27 PM on May 2, 2007


Tacos Are Pretty Great writes "I think it's hugely unethical to accept volunteers to staff a for-profit corporation. Others may disagree."

Looks like, basically, we do.
posted by Bugbread at 1:31 PM on May 2, 2007


I wish I could afford a sock puppet. Then I could say mean things!
posted by Mister_A at 1:31 PM on May 2, 2007


ut-oh.

nice site, by the way
posted by poweredbybeard at 2:08 PM on May 2, 2007


ut-oh

Yeah, it's all here in my comments, including the design lead saying it was no big deal and that nothing was "stolen" at all.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 2:25 PM on May 2, 2007


Hey Tacos can you help me out on the design for my new website? It's about a drama queen who cut off his own hand, so it needs to be all white and professional-looking.

I'll pay ya.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 2:31 PM on May 2, 2007 [1 favorite]


It's about a drama queen who cut off his own hand, so it needs to be all white and professional-looking.

Is this some sort of racist comment?
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 3:04 PM on May 2, 2007


wow. just, wow.

i've berated his design savvy. bashed his coding skillz. mocked his usability mojo. jeered at his moderation judgement. ranted about his site management approach.

but i actually cringed reading this.
posted by quonsar at 3:17 PM on May 2, 2007 [1 favorite]


So, you're saying you've been out-trolled?
posted by IronLizard at 3:24 PM on May 2, 2007


Upstaged by an edible object with an oversized ego.
Now I seen it all...
posted by Dizzy at 3:30 PM on May 2, 2007


And isn't Tacos "Pretty Generic"?
posted by klangklangston at 4:55 PM on May 2, 2007


I just went and checked out Tacos' website.

Hey q, could I borrow a box of berate, a bucket of bash, a magnum of mock and a jug of jeer? Cos I just found a good spot to dump 'em.

"Invalid Security" lol
"Relaunch Site" rofl
flash bleurgh... think I just relaunched a bad fish taco

It's like a cheesy porn site to service the fish taco fetish market.

Matt, you should send TAPG a thank-you gift card. Being publicly harangued by a dick so manifestly clueless has *got* to be a cred booster.
posted by flabdablet at 5:13 PM on May 2, 2007


i've berated his design savvy. bashed his coding skillz. mocked his usability mojo. jeered at his moderation judgement. ranted about his site management approach.

Stake. Heart. Dust.
posted by Cyrano at 5:32 PM on May 2, 2007


Should have quoted the second part of q's comment. Oh well.
posted by Cyrano at 5:35 PM on May 2, 2007


I wish I could afford a sock puppet. Then I could say mean things!

I hear tell that the account itself is mere peanuts; it's the spine removal that'll cost you.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 8:19 PM on May 2, 2007


Don't steal from Mormon designers. Christ, do you want them showing up at your door to convert you every day, every three hours, on the hour? Are you crazy? That's running an ad with Scientology's secrets during the Super Bowl kind of crazy.

N.B., I don't consider it stealing at all. I once had a site that had the same color scheme as a previous incarnation of Deviant Art ... that's right, a previous version. Someone from Deviant Art sent me a nice message saying, "take this down", and I explained I never had, up until that point heard of Deviant Art. The similarity was about the same as NorthTemple and Fortuit.us, and the content was incredibly dissimilar. Deviant Art kids hounded me relentlessly until I took the site down. I didn't have the energy or the time to fight it vigorously, besides the content was important. Moral of the story: designers make the MPAA look like the old lady handing out full-size candy bars on Halloween.
posted by geoff. at 9:18 PM on May 2, 2007


Uh, so, getting back to the topic, I'm looking forward to reading fortuito.us, although I hope there are enough random Googlers, Stumblers, Diggers and non-random RSS people that the domain name becomes less challenging.
posted by acoutu at 9:29 PM on May 2, 2007


"It does not work like any other site on the net. Lower right hand corner to get to the home page?
Nobody wants to learn how to use your website. It should be obvious."


I'd appreciate if you'd refrain from speaking for me. I "learned" to use his new site in all of about 1.5 seconds...though it was probably quite a bit more for you, dinosaur. I also happen to like sites that mix it up a little bit...we all learn from each other, and I plan to nick some of that css in a moment to play with it.
posted by Liosliath at 10:04 PM on May 2, 2007


This is what I now will always refer to as:

SOCK PUPPET CAJONES!
posted by Derek at 10:30 PM on May 2, 2007


I've been sitting here staring at wahoos.com for longer than it took me to read Matt's whole blog trying to figure out if I want to 'relaunch' the site, or allow the popup, or fall over laughing.
posted by 31d1 at 10:45 PM on May 2, 2007


I've been paying her for over a year and a half. It's now a living wage

I've totally changed my mind about the mushroom clouds and streets running with the blood of the innocent, Matt. Honest. You need a mod in this timezone, I'm yer man. No, really. C'mon, pleeeease?
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:59 PM on May 2, 2007


Nicely said, Liosliath. Matt I sincerely hope you don't waste any more energy on either interaction (the whole 'waaah, you stole our design' crap, or the 'waaah, I've got a list of grievances with you including some meaningless shite about giftcards'). I'm far from a worshipper in the Cult of Web Celebrity - you're a decent bloke and good luck with this latest new blog, the content of which will be eagerly read since there isn't enough of its type out there. You know what they say - success is the best revenge, anyway :)

Me, I'm still trying to figure out what language "take it's pretty, but useless, ass out back and shoot it" is written in. It seems to be English, but bitterness has transformed it into something else entirely.
posted by rmm at 11:55 PM on May 2, 2007


And isn't Tacos "Pretty Generic"?

No.
posted by thirteenkiller at 4:00 AM on May 3, 2007


And besides not being controlled by that person who used to post here under the username Pretty_Generic, this Tacos person isn't really generic at all. This is the most spectacularly bad flameout we've had in quite some time.
posted by thirteenkiller at 4:04 AM on May 3, 2007


I'd like to be a mod as well, but I'd only want to do it if I could randomly ban members for trivial or imagined grievances: "User 64398, your nose whistles when you breathe: banned". My second effort would be centered on deleting FPPs with strange and insulting reasons for deletion: "This post sucks. Also, your grandmother smells like lilacs, mildew and Harvey's Bristol Cream: deleted".

If chosen I promise to do everything in my power to uphold no standard of fairness whatsoever.
posted by psmealey at 4:11 AM on May 3, 2007


psmealy smells like a mouldy old Les Paul and a couple of tubey amps: banned.
posted by Wolof at 5:42 AM on May 3, 2007


I'm down with the lilacs and mildew, but keep yer mitts off the Harvey's.
Look, I don't have a turkey.
posted by Dizzy at 5:43 AM on May 3, 2007


Donkey spells psmealey's user name wrongly: autobanned.
posted by Wolof at 6:02 AM on May 3, 2007


That's an excellent idea for a script, Wolof. Thank you!
posted by psmealey at 6:11 AM on May 3, 2007


Of course, we'd also have to autoban (after the paypal clears, natch) any sufficiently difficult username.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:44 AM on May 3, 2007


This script sounds lousy, good luck pitching a robot/donkey story.
posted by Mister_A at 6:47 AM on May 3, 2007


Er...how do you relaunch a page that hasn't launched?
posted by Bugbread at 7:02 AM on May 3, 2007


Fun, fun, fun mit der Autoban.

/Kraftwerk-filter
posted by Grangousier at 7:07 AM on May 3, 2007


Genau, Grangousier.
posted by psmealey at 7:08 AM on May 3, 2007


"And besides not being controlled by that person who used to post here under the username Pretty_Generic, this Tacos person isn't really generic at all. This is the most spectacularly bad flameout we've had in quite some time."

Haha, fair enough— you'd be the one to know what P_G is up to on the internets.
posted by klangklangston at 7:15 AM on May 3, 2007


Er...how do you relaunch a page that hasn't launched?

n00b.
posted by Mister_A at 7:19 AM on May 3, 2007


Sorry, Mister_A, I can't find a key labelled "n00b". What am I doing wrong?
posted by flabdablet at 7:28 AM on May 3, 2007


Is it somewhere near the "any" key? Cos I can't find that either.
posted by flabdablet at 7:30 AM on May 3, 2007


Flabbby and bugbread: To enhance your enjoyment of wahoos.com, hold down the 'alt' key and press the 'F4' key.
posted by Mister_A at 7:32 AM on May 3, 2007


Explain to me again the thing that makes sockpuppets worth the trouble or why we let banned people come back and return to their ways?
posted by dios at 7:35 AM on May 3, 2007


Hey! It went away!
posted by flabdablet at 7:37 AM on May 3, 2007


Explain to me again the thing that makes sockpuppets worth the trouble or why we let banned people come back and return to their ways?

Revenue!
posted by psmealey at 7:38 AM on May 3, 2007


Mister_A is my new guru.
posted by flabdablet at 7:39 AM on May 3, 2007


Revenue!

ITYM 'Gift cards!'
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:40 AM on May 3, 2007


Fun trivia: Sock puppets are actually forbidden on MeFi, unless you pay the $5 signup fee with a gift card.
posted by Bugbread at 7:50 AM on May 3, 2007


Explain to me again the thing that makes sockpuppets worth the trouble or why we let banned people come back and return to their ways?

Revenue!


BRAND NEW DAY. Seriously, we try to give people second and third chances here as often as possible, but sometimes the cost of that is giving up your old comfy username.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:25 AM on May 3, 2007


I think users should pay $5 for every strawman they chronically abuse into a discussion.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:25 AM on May 3, 2007


The strawman was nice; he helped Dorothy.
posted by Mister_A at 8:35 AM on May 3, 2007 [3 favorites]


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