Proposal for new MetaFilter guidelines July 26, 2007 9:30 PM   Subscribe

The subject of rewriting the guidelines is something that comes up from time to time. As MetaFilter evolves as a community, it is good to rewrite the guidelines to reflect evolving standards. I have been thinking about how to write new guidelines on and off for the last week and here's my proposal. [more inside]
posted by Kattullus to Etiquette/Policy at 9:30 PM (113 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

Proposal for new MetaFilter Posting Guidelines:


Posting to the Front Page of MetaFilter

People disagree as to what makes a post good. Try to figure out what you think makes for a good post. Try to emulate the style that most appeals to you. Some people like link-heavy posts, others like streamlining. You will never appeal to everyone. Don't sweat it, making a post isn't that hard. If you've found a cool site, link to it and write a short description, perhaps throwing in a bit of context for good measure.

What makes for a good link is a bit easier to explain. It has to be relatively unknown and it has to be interesting. It is an extra bonus if it raises an issue that warrants discussing, but that is not reason enough to post a link.

That's nearly everything on the internet, but most everything on the internet doesn't make for a good post to the front page of MetaFilter. Here are some things you should avoid:
Don't link to sites or pages you have a connection to. That means no link to your own blog, your homepage, your company's site, your essays or websites where you are a content creator. If you do, your account will be banned and your self-linking post deleted. You can, however, put up links to you own sites over at projects.

Refrain from linking to promotional content of any kind, be it ads, games or anything else. Your post will not be deleted automatically, but it will be held to a higher standard than normal. If the post is not superlative, it will be deleted.

Think twice before posting links that touch on hot-button social or political issues. Ask yourself if the post has value beyond sharing outrage or scoring a political point. Like with promotional content, political links will be scrutinized harder than non-political posts. It it's not of intrinsic interest, the post will be deleted. The same goes for posts about current news events.

Search MetaFilter before you make a post to ensure that your links haven't been posted to the front page previously. Almost every doublepost gets deleted. Also check to see if a recent, still open post dealt with the same subject. If so, consider putting your link there as a comment.

Don't link to porn. It's the internet, if we know what floats our boat, we know which harbor to dock at. That doesn't mean you can't link to sexually explicit stuff, it just has to have some value beyond titillation. Remember to include NSFW after the link to warn people, some people surf from work, others might have an inexplicable dislike of googly-eyed furries getting it on.

Include a link in your post. MetaFilter's main purpose is to point people to cool stuff.
If your post is deleted, an e-mail will be sent to you explaining why. Don't worry, if you post regularly eventually one of your posts will get deleted. It happens to the best of us, it's not a judgment of your character or the quality of your other posts, just that this one particular post didn't fit the style or spirit of MetaFilter.

Finally, remember, these are only guidelines, there are boundaries, but they are fuzzy.


Commenting in Threads

Think of comment threads as a conversation and act accordingly. That means:
Refrain from insulting other users. If you are angry, step away from MetaFilter for a minute and calm down. Remember, for all you know, most users could be nothing but sophisticated bots chattering on mainframes somewhere. Is it really worth it getting personal with computer programs?

Talk about the subject at hand. Sure, organic derails happen, and there's nothing wrong with that, but don't start talking about matters completely unrelated to the post the thread is to. An example would be start arguing that the Star Wars Prelogy is better than the original trilogy in a thread about how the zombie hordes of the Imperial Dominion of Canadia have overrun Kalamazoo. Nobody wants to hear about the Skywalker family when they just had to shoot the animated corpse of their mother with a sawed-off shotgun.

Don't try to shut down the conversation or berate users for talking about an issue raised by the post different from what you feel is most important. Sure, your hometown has been overrun by the living dead, but it is natural that people wonder if Albequerque's valiant defenders can hold on.

Don't jump on people for making typos. Everybody makes mistakes.

Read what people write. Don't misconstrue what they say.
Only rarely are comments deleted. If yours is, an e-mail will be sent to you explaining why. Repeated transgressions will lead to temporary bans and, if the pattern of behavior doesn't change, to a permanent banning of your account.

There are no refunds.
posted by Kattullus at 9:30 PM on July 26, 2007


P.S. Much of this is inspired by the MetaFilter Wiki entries WhatIsABadPost and WhatIsAGoodPost.
posted by Kattullus at 9:33 PM on July 26, 2007


Posting to the Front Page of MetaFilter

Don't Do It.
posted by jonson at 9:35 PM on July 26, 2007 [5 favorites]


My proposal: link to the MetaFilter Wiki entries WhatIsABadPost and WhatIsAGoodPost.
posted by The Deej at 9:35 PM on July 26, 2007


Posting to the Front Page of MetaFilter

Don't Do It.
posted by jonson


Especially if it involves kids dressed as old-time gangsters.
posted by The Deej at 9:37 PM on July 26, 2007


posted by Kattullus As MetaFilter evolves as a community, it is good to rewrite the guidelines to reflect evolving standards.

Why? What's wrong with the current guidelines?
posted by fandango_matt at 9:38 PM on July 26, 2007


This will definitely not me.
posted by wendell at 9:39 PM on July 26, 2007 [16 favorites]


posted by jonson Posting to the Front Page of MetaFilter: Don't Do It.

Especially if it involves Scott Baio.
posted by fandango_matt at 9:40 PM on July 26, 2007


GYOMF
posted by mullacc at 9:42 PM on July 26, 2007 [1 favorite]


Scott Baio got me tickets to Stone Temple Pilots in 1999!

Also, I'm sorta with fandango_matt at this point. Do you have any specifics regarding the evolving standards you cite as impetus for this? Or any further reasoning aside from that the topic comes up from time to time? So far the only fault I find with your re-write is that it is too long. My eyes glazed over and I stopped reading right after "People disagree". I like the current guidelines for their simplicity and brevity.
posted by carsonb at 9:49 PM on July 26, 2007


If you're going to have guidelines, they'd better only be about a paragraph long or some quick bulleted sentences. Nobody's gonna read anything longer than that, especially the ones that should have read the guidelines.

Really, they should be as accessible as fandango_matt's safety guide.
posted by Stan Chin at 9:49 PM on July 26, 2007


Not bad at all, if a little long. I'd change some wording a bit here and there, and definitely say in flaming 60point letters of fire "IF YOUR SHIT IS DELETED DON'T RUN TO METATALK TO FUCKING WHINE ABOUT IT JUST DO BETTER NEXT TIME, ASSHOLE" or something to that effect.

Other things:
I don't understand the zombie bit. Too cute, not clear.
Self-linking prohibition words need to be Big, Bold and Yargh!
There might be some mention of the undesireability of axe-grinding, agendafilter type of stuff.

Good effort all 'round, though.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:50 PM on July 26, 2007


The subject of rewriting the guidelines is something that comes up from time to time. As MetaFilter evolves as a community, it is good to rewrite the guidelines to reflect evolving standards. I have been thinking about how to write new guidelines on and off for the last week and here's my proposal.

HAI HAU U CAN HAZ GOOD POST?

LOL I DUNO, ASK CORTEX

RUH ROH, U MADE A POST BUT CORTEX EATED IT
posted by Krrrlson at 9:56 PM on July 26, 2007 [4 favorites]


If someone does rewrite the guidelines, they may want to ensure that it jives with the new user page and it might be a good idea to echo the idea of trust first mentioned there. It's kinda central to how things work here.
posted by shoesfullofdust at 10:08 PM on July 26, 2007


Why a scratch re-write as opposed to an edit of the existing document?
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:08 PM on July 26, 2007


Maybe if people actually read and followed the existing guidelines, we wouldn't have other people insisting the guidelines be rewritten because people aren't reading and following the existing guidelines.
posted by fandango_matt at 10:15 PM on July 26, 2007 [1 favorite]


Nobody's gonna read anything longer than that, especially the ones that should have read the guidelines.

Heck, some people don't even read the gigantic warning about self-linking on the front page!
posted by The Deej at 10:21 PM on July 26, 2007


What guidelines?
posted by blue_beetle at 10:41 PM on July 26, 2007


Your rewrite makes no reference to analingus (i.e., rimjobs).
posted by Meatbomb at 10:47 PM on July 26, 2007


This wasn't intended as a set-in-stone proposal. I just made an attempt to rewrite the guidelines because I think it's time to re-examine them. I made an effort to try to describe what I perceive to be the community norms of MetaFilter, rather than what I would like MetaFilter to be. I don't think that my proposal's perfect, but I believe it's closer to how MetaFilter operates today than what the current guidelines describe.

cortex: Why a scratch re-write as opposed to an edit of the existing document?

It started out that way, but it got further and further away from the original until I decided to simply start from scratch while keeping all the most important ideas.

stavrosthewonderchicken: I don't understand the zombie bit. Too cute, not clear.

I was trying to keep it light-hearted. No need to intimidate people, after all (the people who need intimidating rarely read these things anyway). While MetaFilter takes itself seriously, it's still a fairly silly place. I also felt like I needed to include specific, yet farfetched, examples to make things clear. If it muddles things however, it's a bad idea.

shoesfullofdust: If someone does rewrite the guidelines, they may want to ensure that it jives with the new user page and it might be a good idea to echo the idea of trust first mentioned there. It's kinda central to how things work here.

What an excellent point! I wish I'd thought of that.

carsonb: Do you have any specifics regarding the evolving standards you cite as impetus for this?

Some community standards aren't reflected in the guidelines as they now are written. The most glaring example is the higher standard political posts are held to.

It's been a while since the guidelines were written. A lot has changed. I don't know how old they are, but they feel out of date. To give an example, on today's MetaFilter, 10-20 comments in a thread is not a link "everybody is talking about." Also, for that matter, there's little correlation between long comment threads and the quality of the posts.
posted by Kattullus at 10:54 PM on July 26, 2007


Perhaps it is past languagehat's bedtime. Fwiw, a note to shoesfullofdust:
jibe
to be in harmony or accord; agree: The report does not quite jibe with the commissioner's observations.
jive
1. swing music or early jazz.
2. the jargon associated with swing music and early jazz.
3. Slang. deceptive, exaggerated, or meaningless talk: Don't give me any of that jive!
posted by Cranberry at 11:03 PM on July 26, 2007


posted by Kattullus I think it's time to re-examine [the guidelines].

Could you please explain this further? Why do they need to be rewritten? If people aren't reading or following the existing guidelines, I don't understand why writing new guidelines will solve the problem.
posted by fandango_matt at 11:19 PM on July 26, 2007


I don't understand what's changed vs. the original version.

Also, you misspelled the largest city in New Mexico.
posted by dw at 11:30 PM on July 26, 2007


The most important change that needs to be made to the guidelines is a sentence or two reflecting the three mods' evolving consensus on the lack of value of most political news posts.
posted by mediareport at 11:31 PM on July 26, 2007


Well written but...

LESS POLICY MORE SENSEMAKING.


I've been meaning to write my own version of this. Just a moment... *waves cortex off of thread with complicated warding signs*
posted by loquacious at 11:32 PM on July 26, 2007


I'll take meaningless talk for 500.
posted by shoesfullofdust at 11:39 PM on July 26, 2007


To give an example, on today's MetaFilter, 10-20 comments in a thread is not a link "everybody is talking about."

That's a fine example of how the current guidelines are out of date, but it's not one I'd choose to support re-writing the whole damn thing.
posted by carsonb at 11:41 PM on July 26, 2007


Kattullus: the level of boredom it must have taken to inspire you to write that is matched only by mine, to comment.
posted by UbuRoivas at 11:41 PM on July 26, 2007


Posting Guidelines:

If you need a rule-book written by Gary Gygax to figure out what makes a good post, don't!

If you have to force yourself to make a post and it feels like work, don't! It'll feel like work to your readers, too.

If you have an agenda - don't post about it! Post about something else.

Still confused? View the FAQ.
posted by loquacious at 11:41 PM on July 26, 2007 [2 favorites]


It's a pretty good rewrite, but I agree with a lot of people here in that it would have to be edited down to 1/4 the length.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 11:43 PM on July 26, 2007


If you need a rule-book written by Gary Gygax to figure out what makes a good post, don't

...unless you have a Cloud of Credulous Admiration spell up your sleeve.
posted by UbuRoivas at 11:54 PM on July 26, 2007


...unless you have a Cloud of Credulous Admiration spell up your sleeve.

I've worn the Ring of Conflict on the Astral Plane, I have Ascended Cursed and Hungry while entrapped inside a Gelatinous Cube that was my pet - and I have a Bag of Infinite Holding that I'm not afraid to turn inside-out.

Even worse I'm guilty of terrible mixed-realm metaphors. Frog blast the vent core!
posted by loquacious at 12:02 AM on July 27, 2007


So, the grey is the Astral Plane, right? I wish I'd known that earlier.
posted by UbuRoivas at 12:05 AM on July 27, 2007


So, the grey is the Astral Plane, right? I wish I'd known that earlier.

Well, we could rewrite the engine to simulate Rifts, Toons or Teenagers From Outer Space but then we'd get mob-lynched for being such total idiots.
posted by loquacious at 12:25 AM on July 27, 2007


Well, just leave mob-lynching out of the code then, duh.
posted by UbuRoivas at 12:31 AM on July 27, 2007


People disagree as to what makes a post good. Try to figure out what you think makes for a good post.

No, goddamnit. These are guidelines. They are supposed to guide. You do not start off a set of guidelines by saying "there's no consensus, figure it out yourself." If you do that, you have provided no guidance. Which is kind of exactly the opposite of the point of guidelines.
posted by ikkyu2 at 1:33 AM on July 27, 2007 [1 favorite]


Guideline overhaul is probably a good idea... but, yeah - short, simple and bulleted is probably the way to go. Maybe something that looks a little more like this:

Good posts:
  • will link to something interesting and relatively unknown on the internet; it's great if it also sparks an interesting conversation, but that's not enough reason to post a link.
Bad posts include:
  • sites or pages you have a connection to; your post will be deleted and the your account banned. See here for complete details.
  • promotional content of any kind, be it ads, games or anything else. These posts are held to a higher standard, and if they aren't superlative, they will be deleted.
  • news links that simply regurgitate information that can be found everywhere else on the web. If it doesn't present something new or different and interesting, don't post it.
  • posts on hot-button social or political issues. Posts that are designed to spark outrage or score political points are bad posts. Political and news links will be scrutinized much more severely, and deleted if they aren't excellent.
_______________________________________

etc.

(this is more for style than content.)
posted by taz at 1:36 AM on July 27, 2007 [1 favorite]


PowerPoint slides. We need bulleted slides. With whooshing transitions.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:26 AM on July 27, 2007


There are three kinds of posts on MetaFilter: good, bad, and ugly self-linking posts that will get you banned.

Good posts
  • link to something interesting and relatively unknown. It's great if it also sparks an interesting conversation, but that's not enough reason to post a link.
Bad posts

All of these categories will get extra scrutiny and may be deleted if they aren't of superlative quality:
  • promotional content of any kind, be it ads, games or anything else
  • news links or op-ed pieces that simply regurgitate information that can be found everywhere else on the web
  • posts on hot-button social or political issues, or that are designed to spark outrage or score political points
Ugly posts

If you post one of these your post will be deleted and your account will be banned:
  • sites or pages you have a connection to. It's really simple, don't ever do it.
posted by grouse at 3:37 AM on July 27, 2007


Round 2: This is probably visually tighter than what I just posted.
_________

There are three kinds of posts on MetaFilter: good, bad, and ugly self-linking posts that will get you banned.

Good posts include:
  • links to something interesting and relatively unknown. Sparking a good conversation is not enough reason to post a link.
Bad posts will get extra scrutiny and may be deleted if they aren't of superlative quality. They include:
  • promotional content of any kind, be it ads, games or anything else
  • news links or op-ed pieces that simply regurgitate information that can be found everywhere else on the web
  • posts on hot-button social or political issues, or that are designed to spark outrage or score political points
Ugly posts will be deleted and your account will be banned if you post one. They include:
  • sites or pages you have a connection to. It's really simple, don't ever do it.
posted by grouse at 3:44 AM on July 27, 2007


Ah fuck it, let's just go no-comments memepool-stylee, like kottke was telling Matt to do 5 years back.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:20 AM on July 27, 2007


If your post is deleted, an e-mail will be sent to you explaining why.

Hmmm. I've had multiple posts deleted but have never received an e-mail from an admin explaining why.
posted by fallenposters at 4:50 AM on July 27, 2007


Only rarely are comments deleted. If yours is, an e-mail will be sent to you explaining why.

I don't think every comment deletion can possibly get an email. Posts maybe, but not comments.
Also nix on the zombie stuff. That's where I would have stopped reading.
posted by CunningLinguist at 4:54 AM on July 27, 2007


Hmmm. I've had multiple posts deleted

Given that you've been here for three months so far, that's not exactly a mark of pride, there, buddy. I suggest LURK.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:06 AM on July 27, 2007 [1 favorite]


Guidelines:

1- Don't be an ass.

2- Don't post things that make it too easy for someone else to be an ass.

3- Regardless of these efforts, someone will be an ass.

4- See #1.
posted by The Deej at 5:22 AM on July 27, 2007


The hand-holdy nature of the rewrite does not match the tone or personality of the site.
posted by necessitas at 5:29 AM on July 27, 2007


Guidelines:

1. Do the right thing.
(a) Fucko.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:55 AM on July 27, 2007


When exactly would anyone see these guidelines? I don't think I've ever seen that page before.
posted by smackfu at 6:00 AM on July 27, 2007


It's linked at the top of the posting page, smackfu.
posted by mediareport at 6:10 AM on July 27, 2007


Noob.
posted by i_cola at 6:15 AM on July 27, 2007


The best way to improve the site is to delete the accounts of approximately 1/3 to 1/2 of all users. No refunds! We can do this with a banning-lottery.

For example, we could delete the account of all members whose name's start with the letter m. No, NO WAIT! NOOOOOOOOO! *&*(^$%##((#@^*((.

/end process .matty
posted by matty at 6:24 AM on July 27, 2007


It's been a while since the guidelines were written. A lot has changed. I don't know how old they are, but they feel out of date.

No offense Kattulus, but we rewrite the guidelines -- more for clarity than for content -- pretty regularly. The latest version of them is probably no more than 6-8 months old. It may have some old parts in it, but we revisit that document frequently.

The FAQ is actually more of a living document, the guidelines are more of the constitution. While I appreciate the work you went into to put together the whole thing the fact that you felt the need to rewrite the whole document, more or less, to me speaks to the disconnect between how the site runs and how you would like it to run.

We have a bind between writing everything down in the guidelines/FAQ and trying to leave things more or less open so that we can discuss more things in MeTa. Tighter guidelines mean more griefing here because people point to the letter of the law and adjust everything around that. Looser guidelines lend themselves to more discussion about interpreting the guidelines which is mostly how mathowie (and cortex and I) like to keep things.

The other thing, as people have been pointing out, is that people don't read them as it is, in many cases. Having guidelines that we can point back to -- i.e. "we banned you because you broke the self-linking guideline" -- is more what they're used for than guiding people making new posts.

A lot of your guidelines are your own intepretation of how the site should run. We don't email people when their comments are removed all the time and we don't plan to. There's no need to tell people not to point out typos, this is not a huge problem and it's just another unneeded "don't do this" reproach. It's okay to link to porn once in a while, as with games, as with promotional stuff. I'm sure everyone has their own mini set of guidelines that determine how they contribute here, but we like the guidelines to be broad and open, not "there are no refunds" NONONO talking.

Finally, we're not Flickr, we don't have cutesy zombie or "googly eyed furries" language in the guidelines and that's intentional.

I'd much rather start this discussion with a "what absolutely is not working" in the guidelines discussion than have some Rewrite 'Em! contest. I like the idea of looking at the guidelines again, but I don't really want to change everything they say. I like the idea of splitting off comments and posts. I like the idea of being a bit more clear on newsfilter stuff. At the end of the day however, if it doesn't start with

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


It's changing what the site is fundamnetally about and that's a different discussion than just updating the guidelines.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:27 AM on July 27, 2007 [3 favorites]


I finally read the suggested new guidelines. I tend to use a lot of words to get my point across. But, wow, that's wordy. I didn't even want to read it here in the thread, so I can't imagine someone with an FPP rattling around, excited about posting it, would slow down long enough to read any of that. I think the current guidelines and the reminders by the comment boxes are clear and concise.

note: Help maintain a healthy, respectful discussion by focusing comments on the issues, topics, and facts at hand—not at other members of the site.

That already sits under the comment box, and it says everything the proposed 6 paragraph "comments" section says. That's why the admins get the big bucks. :)
posted by The Deej at 7:19 AM on July 27, 2007


1.) Don't be an ass.

2.) If you need a long-drawn-out defintion of the word "ass" and an even longer explanation of how not to behave like an ass . . . ask Matt for a refund.

3.) RTFA. Please at least glance at it or view the first ten seconds of the video.

4.) No self-linking.

5.) When in doubt, please refer to point 1.
posted by jason's_planet at 7:29 AM on July 27, 2007


Okay, I rewrote it, taking into account what people have wrtitten. The most important change is that I cut it from 800 words to 330. Hopefully that brought clarity.


Posting to the Front Page of MetaFilter

A good post to MetaFilter is something that meets the following criteria: most people haven’t seen it before and there is something interesting about the content of the page. It's an extra bonus if it raises an issue that warrants discussing, but that is not reason enough to post a link.

What to Avoid

Don't link to sites or pages you have a connection to. That means no link to your own blog, your homepage, your company's site, your essays or websites where you are a content creator. If you do, your account will be banned and your self-linking post deleted.

Some subjects are judged by a higher standard than others:

- Politics and hot-button social issues
- Promotional and marketing material
- Current news events
- Porn

Search MetaFilter before you make a post to ensure that your links haven't been posted to the front page previously. Almost every doublepost gets deleted. Also check to see if a recent, still open post dealt with the same subject. If so, consider putting your link there as a comment.

Include a link in your post. MetaFilter's main purpose is to point people to cool stuff.

Finally, remember, these are only guidelines, there are boundaries, but they are fuzzy.

Commenting in Threads

Think of comment threads as a conversation and act accordingly. That means:

- Refrain from insulting other users.
- Talk about the subject at hand. Sure, organic derails happen, and there's nothing wrong with that, but don't start talking about matters completely unrelated to the post the thread is to.
- Don't try to shut down the conversation or berate users for talking about an issue raised by the post different from what you feel is most important
- Read what people have written.

Only rarely are comments deleted. Repeated transgressions will lead to temporary bans and, if the pattern of behavior doesn't change, to a permanent banning of your account.
posted by Kattullus at 7:30 AM on July 27, 2007


jessamyn: While I appreciate the work you went into to put together the whole thing the fact that you felt the need to rewrite the whole document, more or less, to me speaks to the disconnect between how the site runs and how you would like it to run.

I tried to keep my own opinions out of it, but rereading it I noticed some that had slipped in so I took them out. I was trying to give a description of what I think the community norms are. I don't agree with all of them, but I recognize them for what they are (like I don't agree with all laws, but I abide by them). If I failed in describing what the standards of MetaFilter are, then I failed, but I was trying to give what I felt was a more accurate picture than I found in the guidelines. I'm not saying it's my way or the high way, and I don't really expect my proposal to be adopted as is, but I felt it was the most constructive approach I could take to what I felt was a problem.

And don't worry about me taking offense, I'm pretty thick-skinned. I was at Hampshire. If I couldn't take the back and forth of debate, I would have ended up simpering in a corner after the second week.
posted by Kattullus at 7:39 AM on July 27, 2007


uh.
posted by The Deej at 7:45 AM on July 27, 2007


tl;dr.

Oh wait, that one two posts above is a bit better. Thread should've started with that.
posted by bonaldi at 7:46 AM on July 27, 2007


Kattullus, jessamyn wants to have a discussion about what is wrong with the current guidelines so that we can understand why they need to be rewritten and how your version is better. So...what is wrong with the current guidelines?
posted by Kwine at 7:49 AM on July 27, 2007


Welcome to the posting page. Remember, everyone hates your topic. Write your post with the sure knowledge that we already want to delete it, unless it's a single link to a youtube video. We already know you're an ass. Thanks.
posted by blacklite at 7:52 AM on July 27, 2007 [1 favorite]


The guidelines don't need to be re-written.

Getting posts or comments deleted is a great way to learn.

Finally, the guidelines don't need to be re-written.
posted by The Deej at 7:56 AM on July 27, 2007


Seriously, unless you think there is something totally wrong with the guidelines as they are, let's talk about maybe changing what we have to suit how the site functions. Your new version

1. changes the mission statement in ways that i don't think are necessary "It's an extra bonus if it raises an issue that warrants discussing, but that is not reason enough to post a link." That's your take, that's not policy at all and it's a biggish change.
2. the line about "sure organic derails happen" is too mushy and not needed, these things are not current problems and don't need to be spelled out. Flamewar derails are a problem. Off-topic posts to AskMe are a problem but rambly derails are not really a problem in MeFi.
3. the self-link line we have now is better than yours. Yours is confusing, imo. The language needs to be strong and this is spelled out more in the FAQ.
4. the "higher standard" thing is something we've been batting around in MeTa but it is in no way policy or shoudl it be construed as such. I know people feel srtongly about these sorts of posts, but there's not currently a problem with a lot of cheezy porn links, advertising links or newsfilter links most of the time.
5. You can't post without including a link without hackery, this doesn't need to be there.
6. "Only rarely are comments deleted." this doesn't need to be in the guidelines, it is not helping people write better comments or posts.

From an admin perspective, everything in the guidelines is considered scripture by a small subset of the site. Everything there is there for a reason and it needs to be defensible, enforceable, fair, and consistent to the extent that it can be and to the extent that it's being reviewed and interpreted by somewhere between 5,000 and 50,000 people. We can't just copy and paste in a new set of guidelines and tell people "okay, please learn these, ktxbi"

For one thing, the site operates primarily on precedent. People mostly learn by seeing how the site works and figuring out how they fit into it. There's no big stigma to getting a post or a comment removed and acting like we have to spell out all the ways in which that might happen in the guidelines is overreaching, to me. I'll admit I'm way out on one end of the "we need new guidelines yes/no?" discussion, but the three of us have to deal with the ramifications of changing them more than anyone else on the site and, to my mind, there are few big glaring holes in the guidelines that make more work for us or more confusion for the bulk of the members of the site.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:05 AM on July 27, 2007 [2 favorites]


Nobody will read all that before posting. I certainly didn't read it before commenting.
posted by nowonmai at 8:10 AM on July 27, 2007 [1 favorite]


I second nowonmai on tl;dr.

The guidelines are guidelines. They are there to guide. The biggest and most important rule, that should appear in 72-pt green type on a light yellow background, is NO SELF-LINKING EVER.

I think the guidelines, combined with MetaTalk shit-storms and $5 entry fee, are up to the task of keeping this place interesting.

And remember, it's not a democracy. If it was a democracy it would be a horrible mess.
posted by Mister_A at 8:14 AM on July 27, 2007


The most informative guidelines would be a list of the last 10 deleted posts, with deletion reasons.
posted by smackfu at 8:25 AM on July 27, 2007


OK, I read the shorter version. It seems to describe a site that is not quite Metafilter. The existing guidelines make very clear what is allowed and what is not allowed. Your version is a much more personal take on how you would like things to run. "Think of comment threads as conversations" is something I particularly disagree with. I think of them as places where people can comment on the post, and usually the point where they become a conversation is where I stop reading them. There's no reason why your take is better (or worse) than mine. I was going to make some other points, but Jessamyn is more articulate than me and I won't bother copypasting from her most recent comment.
posted by nowonmai at 8:27 AM on July 27, 2007


This is where the current guidelines could be improved: there is one case where the rules are hard and fast - self-linking. The discussion of self-linking is kind of woolly and says it generally makes for a bad post, explaining why it is bad for several reasons. This could be simplified:
"Self-linking is not permitted. Do not link to a page that you have created, or have contributed to, or are otherwise connected to. If you do so, the post will be deleted and your account will be banned."
This could replace pretty much half of the text on the current guidelines page; the woolly explanations of why self-linking is bad could go in the FAQ.
posted by nowonmai at 8:36 AM on July 27, 2007


The self-linking warning is actually on the New Post page right above the posting box.

"Note: You read the guidelines, right? Because linking to your own site or a project you worked on in this space will result in a deletion and your account will be banned. Post it to MetaFilter Projects to announce your work instead, which was designed especially for this purpose."

Despite that we probably ban four or five people a month for violating this, almost all new members who seemed to have signed up for that purpose. That's a good point though, changing "not a good idea" to "not permitted" in the guidelines is probably smart.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:48 AM on July 27, 2007


As I look at the guidelines yet again, I think it's only missing the following:
If you see something on multiple (popular?) forums or blogs and feel like it must be posted on MeFi, don't, because everyone else already saw it, too.
or something to that effect. I mean, if you see it on Fark AND/OR BoingBoing AND/OR Kos AND/OR Slashdot, there's probably no point in posting it here. And if it's generating a massive amount of discussion on a major site, it's probably not worth posting unless there's something unusual/interesting about the conversation around it.

What I'm trying to say is that if you saw it on some big blog or forum, chances are everyone else did, too, so it's not something new to post it here.

I don't think it's a "if you see it on X site you MUST NEVER post it" rule, and I don't want it to be. It's more a "consider whether everyone else really needs to hear about it again" rule.

Someone else can try to cull that all down into a simple declarative sentence.
posted by dw at 8:55 AM on July 27, 2007


I'm sure this was well intentioned and all, but wow, what a display of hubris.

Aside from that, people are going to make crap posts and comments no matter what the guidelines say. Perhaps the admins can clarify, but I suspect that the number of deleted items coming from newbs who don't know any better are far fewer than those that come from people who have been here long enough to understand both the rules and mores of MeFi.
posted by mkultra at 8:58 AM on July 27, 2007


I'll try:

Don't post crap you saw on BoingBoing.
posted by Mister_A at 8:58 AM on July 27, 2007


I thought the Guidelines Committee met on the second and fourth Thursday of the month? Anyway, while I'm here, can I try that casserole?
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 9:11 AM on July 27, 2007


Put it on some stone tablets.
posted by sgt.serenity at 9:17 AM on July 27, 2007


I don't think it's a "if you see it on X site you MUST NEVER post it" rule, and I don't want it to be. It's more a "consider whether everyone else really needs to hear about it again" rule.

True, it can be the ultimate sign of lameness to post something from another popular blog. And yet... I have read posts here that were certainly from Fark or from whatever source Fark got it from. If I haven't seen it, and it's interesting, I read it. If I have already seen it, I just ignore it. But also, the level of comments is better here, so that's worth considering. I also posted something I saw on Fark a time or two myself, but with a little more context and digging.

So, yeah, it's worth a "think twice" and I don't think just posting it as "hey look what I found" would go over so well.
posted by The Deej at 9:24 AM on July 27, 2007


Put it on some stone tablets.

And make a movie starring Edward G. Robinson as sgt.serenity....

...So where's your G-d now, cortex-x-x ?
posted by y2karl at 9:31 AM on July 27, 2007 [1 favorite]


Put the casserole on some stone tablets?
posted by Mister_A at 9:33 AM on July 27, 2007


Kwine: Kattullus, jessamyn wants to have a discussion about what is wrong with the current guidelines so that we can understand why they need to be rewritten and how your version is better. So...what is wrong with the current guidelines?

My rewritten, shorter version was a response to criticisms before Jessamyn added hers. The weightiest one being mathowie saying: "It's a pretty good rewrite, but I agree with a lot of people here in that it would have to be edited down to 1/4 the length." Though I did a quick rewrite to make the language of my suggested opening paragraph more like the current opening paragraph to reflect one of the points Jessamyn made.

As to what I think is wrong with the guidelines, it's fairly simple: they're old. That's not bad per se, but the text doesn't describe MetaFilter as I perceive it. The guidelines can, and have been, patched and repatched throughout the years, but I think it's better to start from scratch. I think that the structure of the guidelines is important, not as important as the content, but if the guidelines were rewritten, it should be looked at from that angle too. I think the structure as it is no has started to creak a little from the additions, so I decided a better tack would be to rewrite it entirely.

mkultra: I'm sure this was well intentioned and all, but wow, what a display of hubris.

That's a fair point. It was well intentioned, but there might have been better ways to go about it. It started out as a response to the cortex comment I linked to in the MeTa post, but it grew out of hand, I suppose. I certainly didn't mean for this to come out as "this is the way the guidelines should be written" but rather as a suggestion for a possible way to rewrite them.

Jessamyn:

1. changes the mission statement in ways that i don't think are necessary "It's an extra bonus if it raises an issue that warrants discussing, but that is not reason enough to post a link." That's your take, that's not policy at all and it's a biggish change.

I changed it in to reflect the following comment mathowie made a year or so ago and was linked in the MeTa post just prior to this one: "No, because you really just want to chat about current events, and mefi is more about the links to interesting sites first, the interesting comments are secondary." It was also a response to chatfilter callouts. I like chatfilter, but I know I'm in the minority, but that's why I rewrote it the way I did.

2. the line about "sure organic derails happen" is too mushy and not needed, these things are not current problems and don't need to be spelled out. Flamewar derails are a problem. Off-topic posts to AskMe are a problem but rambly derails are not really a problem in MeFi.

You're absolutely right.

3. the self-link line we have now is better than yours. Yours is confusing, imo. The language needs to be strong and this is spelled out more in the FAQ.

Reading it over I agree. I was trying to clarify and toughen up the language, but clearly I didn't succeed.

4. the "higher standard" thing is something we've been batting around in MeTa but it is in no way policy or shoudl it be construed as such. I know people feel srtongly about these sorts of posts, but there's not currently a problem with a lot of cheezy porn links, advertising links or newsfilter links most of the time.

Well, it seems a pretty wide-held opinion, reflected in post-deletions, that a politics/promotional/news/porn fpp needs to be pretty damn great if it is to survive. Better than the average post, certainly. I disagree with that, but it seems to be the policy in practice.

5. You can't post without including a link without hackery, this doesn't need to be there.

I thought I was just rewriting the paragraph in the guidelines that starts "make sure you're linking to something on the web" but I guess I misunderstood it.

6. "Only rarely are comments deleted." this doesn't need to be in the guidelines, it is not helping people write better comments or posts.

Well, I included this line to make it clear that it doesn't happen very often, which it doesn't. It was more of a lead-in to the part about getting banned and was meant to make it clear that bans don't happen very often.

nowonmai: "Think of comment threads as conversations" is something I particularly disagree with.

I actually disagree too! But I felt this was kind of the prevailing attitude. My commenting history is filled with stupid quips. I guess I overcorrected for my opinions there.
posted by Kattullus at 9:37 AM on July 27, 2007


The self-linking warning is actually on the New Post page right above the posting box.
The main point of my suggestion was to cut down discussion of self-linking in the guidelines from several fuzzy paragraphs to one clearly-defined one. There are two reasons to do this: firstly, shorter is better, and secondly, you could read the current guidelines and come to the conclusion that self-linking tends to make bad posts, but your own web site is so awesome that it would be an exception. The fact that there is a more definitive statement elsewhere is irrelevant to a discussion of whether the guidelines page is as perfect as it might be.
If you see something on multiple (popular?) forums or blogs and feel like it must be posted on MeFi, don't, because everyone else already saw it, too.
I would think this is covered by the existing most people haven't seen it before. Any extension of this to "should not have been on Fark or BoingBoing or Neatorama or..." would be wrong. There are other popular blogs with a similar mission statement to MeFi, so there's bound to be overlap.
posted by nowonmai at 9:40 AM on July 27, 2007


"The most informative guidelines would be a list of the last 10 deleted posts, with deletion reasons."

That would actually be pretty handy didactically, but would be HELL for MeTa whiners. I prefer having some level of obfuscation so that evidence for "OMG JESSATEX HATERZ ME CENSORS FASCIST NAZI STASI" MeTas takes a little bit more effort to find.

About the biggest thing I'd change would be that "what everybody's talking about," though I do tend to think that posts that only get 10-20 comments are my favorites in general.
posted by klangklangston at 9:49 AM on July 27, 2007


As to what I think is wrong with the guidelines, it's fairly simple: they're old. That's not bad per se, but the text doesn't describe MetaFilter as I perceive it.

My basic and short point is: they're NOT old. They're continually revised, albeit very carefully and with much consideration. They don't describe the site as you see it because, to a small degree you don't see the site the way others see it and probably not how mathowie and I and cortex see it. The guidelines are a document that are for both helping the posters but also helping ease relations between the admins and the users of this site.

The site would certainly suck if we all saw the site the same way, but I see you frequently in MeTa complaining that the site isn't how you want it to be. To me that makes you not an optimal person to attempt to rewrite the guidelines. We've all got our own wish list about what we'd like to see on the site, but the guidelines need to reflect some loose yet inviting broad explanation that helps people use the site. They also need to be pretty unchanging so that people can get a handle on them and move forward, not have to keep an eye on them.

Don't get me wrong, I think a discussion about the guidelines is a good idea but I'd like to look at specifics, not just supplanting a supposedly "old" document with a newer one that is going to have many fo the same problems that any guiding document would have.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 9:51 AM on July 27, 2007


"Well, it seems a pretty wide-held opinion, reflected in post-deletions, that a politics/promotional/news/porn fpp needs to be pretty damn great if it is to survive."

Really? Because the number of pretty damn great news/polifilter posts is very small compared to the number that survive. It's, like, 30% more scrutiny rather than 70% more scrutiny, from a base of about 5-10% scrutiny ("Is this double/self-link?").

"I thought I was just rewriting the paragraph in the guidelines that starts "make sure you're linking to something on the web" but I guess I misunderstood it."

It should be construed as emphasizing the web-exclusive nature of the content, but it's a hard thing to articulate.
posted by klangklangston at 9:53 AM on July 27, 2007


I would think this is covered by the existing most people haven't seen it before. Any extension of this to "should not have been on Fark or BoingBoing or Neatorama or..." would be wrong. There are other popular blogs with a similar mission statement to MeFi, so there's bound to be overlap.

Yeah. I agree in principle with the notion that things that are completely making the rounds aren't as high-quality as the more unique/weird/found stuff, but it's hard to codify that beyond what's already there without going too far in to explicit prohibition territory. A small tweak to the language to capture the idea of "things making the rounds" might be worth looking at.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:57 AM on July 27, 2007


MetaFilter is a gladiator arena, and we are the blood-thirsty crowd. Every once in a while the emperor has to give a post the thumbs down to satisfy our ravenous hunger.
posted by Mister_A at 9:59 AM on July 27, 2007


Any extension of this to "should not have been on Fark or BoingBoing or Neatorama or..." would be wrong. There are other popular blogs with a similar mission statement to MeFi, so there's bound to be overlap.

True, but the point I'm trying to make is that MeFi is not an island, and people should think before putting something up just because they saw it on three other sites. IOW, it doesn't have to be on MeFi to be complete.

Yeah. I agree in principle with the notion that things that are completely making the rounds aren't as high-quality as the more unique/weird/found stuff, but it's hard to codify that beyond what's already there without going too far in to explicit prohibition territory.

And personally, I don't want it to be, first because the 10-20 sites that make up "the rounds" would be a moving target, second because I don't like the idea that sites are prohibited. It is possible that LGF may, one day, produce a quality FPP. It's also possible that pigs will sprout wings, but still.

But I do think that just because you saw it somewhere else doesn't mean it HAS to be on MeFi.

A small tweak to the language to capture the idea of "things making the rounds" might be worth looking at.

That's really all I'm asking for. And I think something like that could give the three-headed modmonster some leverage against the march of political threads.
posted by dw at 10:10 AM on July 27, 2007


The guidelines have to stay guideliney, also because a good post today may not be a good post tomorrow. There have been times where there's just too many of a certain kind of post. But tomorrow, or next week... maybe it will fly. The opposite is true as well. It might fly today, then next week, no go.
posted by The Deej at 10:29 AM on July 27, 2007


MetaFilter is a gladiator arena

Cool! I'm a gladiator!!!!

*Adjusts tape on glasses. Goes back to organizing Magic The Gathering cards*
posted by The Deej at 10:33 AM on July 27, 2007


So if something is posted to MeFi first, then proceeds to "make the rounds", should it get deleted?

Perhaps we should codify all of this into a table of relative weights for each site. "Your friend's blog" is 1. Local news sites are 3. CNN/Fox are 5's. HuffingtonPost and SA are 7's. LGF, Kottke, BoingBoing, and Fark are all 10. YouTube is 50. If the resulting number is higher than your IQ, you can't post it.
posted by mkultra at 10:37 AM on July 27, 2007


Can we get a full ban on AOL/IM speak?

1tz shamful dat SA iz doin mor4 3nglsh then w3 R.
posted by unixrat at 10:38 AM on July 27, 2007


So if something is posted to MeFi first, then proceeds to "make the rounds", should it get deleted?

Heh. Which is a pretty good example of part of the difficulty of making some explicit hardline rule about this sort of thing.

For what it's worth, there's something to be said for trying to distinguish between something that starts at Mefi and makes the rounds merely because a mefite was just ahead of the curve, and something that starts at Mefi and makes the rounds because it's such an awesome discovery/construction by the mefite. The line between the two is not the line between deletion and non-deletion, but I think there is absolutely some extra value to the unusual things, the "look at what I found" posts that are more specific or off the beaten path—a value that's not present so much on things that are going to be inevitably posted on every major blog.

It's the difference between Apple/Google/Miramax product news and dusty-corners-of-the-web stuff. Both may be pretty interesting to a lot of folks here, both may make reasonably good posts and produce interesting threads, but the latter is a treasure where the former is a mainstream inevitability. I think that difference is something that a lot of people recognize to greater or lesser degrees in their arguments about post quality even if it's not stated explicitly as such.

And it's something that applies to news and politics but also to youtube and bloggery and all sorts of other things, and while it's impossible to completely avoiding conflating topic/genre with the qualitative stuff I'm talking about above, taking the care to treat the two at least as distinct parts of an argument would probably help clarify what people are getting so passionate about and why when arguing deletions/appropriateness/post-quality/etc.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:08 AM on July 27, 2007


posted by Kattullus As to what I think is wrong with the guidelines, it's fairly simple: they're old. That's not bad per se, but the text doesn't describe MetaFilter as I perceive it.

Since you don't understand how the site works, you should not be writing or rewriting the guidelines.
posted by fandango_matt at 11:13 AM on July 27, 2007 [2 favorites]


Let me go back to this excellent comment by Jessamyn. It really helped me to understand the opposite point of view from mine. I still think that the guidelines should be rewritten, but now I have a better appreciation of the position that the guidelines should stay as they are as much as possible. So let me come at this from a slightly different angle.

MetaFilter has always been very ad hoc community wise, which I feel is its great strength. However, as it has grown a number of fairly clear community standards have evolved. I think the guidelines should be rewritten from the ground up with these standards built in at the root level.

I never considered that the guidelines as a constitution so much as a description of what the MetaFilter community wants and doesn't want in posts and comments. That understanding guided my rewrite. Heck, if I thought of the guidelines as a constitution, I would never have rewritten them. I still don't think of them as a constitution for MetaFilter. I don't think MetaFilter needs or should have a constitution, but if that's what the prevailing view is, I'm clearly in the wrong.
posted by Kattullus at 11:22 AM on July 27, 2007


MetaFilter is a gladiator arena, and we are the blood-thirsty crowd. Every once in a while the emperor has to give a post the thumbs down to satisfy our ravenous hunger.

Do you mean the thumbs up, or are you implying that mathowie should kill more threads?
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:37 AM on July 27, 2007


what the MetaFilter community wants and doesn't want in posts and comments.
There are as many versions of this as there are MeFites. Seriously, I don't even agree with my own sockpuppets about Iraqfilter or Youtubefilter or whether mystery-meat posts are an abomination or an adventure. Rather than trying to define in advance what would make a post appropriate for some perception of MeFi, why not just have minimal guidelines and some admins with a delete button?
posted by nowonmai at 11:39 AM on July 27, 2007


MetaFilter is a gladiator arena

Un-un. It's longships full of Vikings (real ones and not dream ones)!
posted by ericb at 11:44 AM on July 27, 2007


So, 19 years later, Kattullus has his own blog and the rest of the 55,000,000 mefites continue as in the past.
posted by Cranberry at 11:47 AM on July 27, 2007 [1 favorite]


posted by Kattullus I think the guidelines should be rewritten from the ground up with these standards built in at the root level.

Yes, you keep saying this, but you're not explaining why this needs to be done i.e. what problem you think needs to and will be solved by rewriting them. You've said, "the guidelines are old," and "the guidelines don't reflect the site as I perceive it," but these are clearly reflections on your understanding of the way in which the site operates rather than reasons why the guidelines need to be rewritten. Judging from the screed you wrote on your profile page, you are the last person who ought to be writing clear, easy-to-understand guidelines.

Consider this: the site works just fine. The guidelines are clearly written, easy to understand, and people who read them have a good grasp of how to use the site. Perhaps one of the reasons the site keeps merrily chugging along is because the guidelines are just fine, and people understand them.
posted by fandango_matt at 12:14 PM on July 27, 2007


I agree with fandango_matt. There's no failure in the guidelines, there's a failure in the people who blatantly ignore the community and are itching for a fight. It should be no surprise, that when a person looking to stir up shitty debate gets his thread deleted, that he stirs it up in Metatalk. We really shouldn't give these people much attention with rampant guideline change. They'll always exist.
posted by Stan Chin at 12:25 PM on July 27, 2007


Mister_A: MetaFilter is a gladiator arena, and we are the blood-thirsty crowd.

Metafilter, that's where I'm a gladiator!
posted by syzygy at 12:38 PM on July 27, 2007 [1 favorite]


Scott Baio got me tickets to Stone Temple Pilots in 1999!

Oh man, just the premise has me salivating. Where might I read about this? Seriously.

On topic - thanks Kattullus, for taking a stab at it. As you can see, with a few rare exceptions, these threads turn into a heaping pile of disheartening fuckery. Granted, entertaining fuckery but probably not suitable for the type of feedback you're seeking. Good luck.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 12:39 PM on July 27, 2007


Think twice before posting links that touch on hot-button social or political issues. Ask yourself if the post has value beyond sharing outrage or scoring a political point. Like with promotional content, political links will be scrutinized harder than non-political posts. It it's not of intrinsic interest, the post will be deleted. The same goes for posts about current news events.

No. no. no. This is a place where we link to and discuss all possible things. There should be no category that is offlimits, especially not any based on some subjective "hot-button" scale. There are millions of places online that limit themselves--this should not be one of them.
posted by amberglow at 12:44 PM on July 27, 2007


fandango_matt: Judging from the screed you wrote on your profile page

What screed? Do you mean the formula for spewing invective on the internet? I thought that it was very obviously a joke. You get these completely nonsensical insults out of it. I mean, I never considered for a moment anyone would take it seriously. Or the Bohemian Rhapsody rewrite about trolls. Or the faux-science fiction "secret history of MetaFilter."
posted by Kattullus at 1:00 PM on July 27, 2007


No. no. no. This is a place where we link to and discuss all possible things. There should be no category that is offlimits, especially not any based on some subjective "hot-button" scale. There are millions of places online that limit themselves--this should not be one of them.

Agreed. What there should be is a sense in posters that categories and topics reach a saturation point if they're always posted about. Thus mathowie's "higher standard" comes into play. But there shouldn't be bans on any topic.
posted by dw at 1:01 PM on July 27, 2007


The rounds by their very nature are circular. I go to BoingBoing and Kottke rarely and Fark or Digg never, but even still, I occasionally have people say "you forgot to via BoingBoing" - grrr.

I prefer more obscure blogs, but heck, they could be lifting all their links from Boing Boing or Fark for all I know, so there you have it.

Obscure used to be relatively easy, not so much any more. I am continually impressed how well mefites are at finding fresh new things or interesting old things.

Katullus, I lean to the "leave as is" camp on the guidelines but I tip my hat to you for taking the time to try improve the site.
posted by madamjujujive at 3:05 PM on July 27, 2007


Kattullus, joke or no, your profile still qualifies as screed. I don't think fandango_matt was saying he was offended, but rather that it was a bit wordy to recommend you as someone to rewrite the guidelines.
posted by donnagirl at 3:05 PM on July 27, 2007


tl;dr
posted by flabdablet at 8:06 PM on July 27, 2007


There are millions of places online that limit themselves--this should not be one of them.

Well put amberglow. Here everything should be possible, with the only limit being our imagination.
posted by Meatbomb at 6:16 AM on July 28, 2007


The only limit is yourself!
posted by Mid at 6:38 AM on July 28, 2007


Katullus, I lean to the "leave as is" camp on the guidelines but I tip my hat to you for taking the time to try improve the site.

I think that says it all. I agree that the current guidelines, although perhaps in need of a little tweaking, are more clear-cut than Katullus's version, but there's no need to bring him down a notch. Sheesh.
posted by Devils Slide at 8:38 AM on July 28, 2007


"Well put amberglow. Here everything should be possible, with the only limit being our imagination."

You're thinking of Zombo.
posted by klangklangston at 9:09 AM on July 28, 2007


klang, surely we should strive to be, at the very least, as excellent as zombo.com?
posted by Meatbomb at 10:03 AM on July 28, 2007


klang, surely you're not reduced to stealing Mid's jokes?
posted by languagehat at 10:52 AM on July 28, 2007


I can't help it, LH— I NEVER LEARNED TO READ!
posted by klangklangston at 4:17 PM on July 28, 2007


Reduced?! More like aggrandized!
posted by Mid at 6:47 PM on July 29, 2007


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