View Only Favorited Comments? February 19, 2008 1:46 PM   Subscribe

I assume this question has been asked before, but I couldn't find it. So maybe not. So maybe I'll ask: For those of us who might like to get the cream of the comments without spending so much time digging through them -- such as on posts with hundreds of 'em -- could we have a "view only favorited comments" button or something?

It's not a perfect idea and I could see potential problems with wanting people to experience the entirety of the conversation and not just fragmented bits-and-pieces. And maybe it would lead to favoriting abuse. But there are some threads I would just like to see the Best Of comments without having to dig through the full pile.

Not that each one of your comments isn't a unique, delicate flower worthy of my time and loving attention.
posted by chasing to Feature Requests at 1:46 PM (44 comments total)



I know we've discussed this before, and I recall Matt saying no.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 1:49 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


More often than not, you'd miss out on the comments that the most favorited ones were in response to. It would be clotted cream indeed.
posted by hermitosis at 1:51 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


I think you just gotta suck it up and chunk it. Take a bit at a time. Wading through that religion MeTa eh?
posted by cashman at 1:55 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


I hate to pull out that old saw, but This Sounds Like A Job For Greasemonkey. (In fact, I think there's at least one script out there that does exactly this, possibly among other things.)

I don't like the idea of a collapse-to-favorites or favorites-only view of threads, first and foremost because favorites aren't intended as a moderation system. Skimming by favorites may be handy for the catching-up reader, but it's explicitly detrimental to the conversation itself—as a matter of course, people should probably be reading the threads they're commenting in, not reading arbitrary highpoints.

Hence the Greasemonkey/miscellaneous-external-solution idea; the difference between an external script and built-in site behavior is the difference between letting people view things how they like if they really want to (can't really do anything about this, anyway) and explicitly condoning and encouraging such a Readers Digest style culling/disregarding of comments that haven't, for whatever reason, snagged favorites.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:55 PM on February 19, 2008 [2 favorites]


I suggest that the link say

"Switch to jokey one-liner and embarrassing multi-page bullshit view"
posted by 1 at 1:58 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


Good lord. Reading the site this way would guarantee you almost always got the snarkiest parts. I'm really starting to loathe the favorites system.
posted by agregoli at 1:59 PM on February 19, 2008 [2 favorites]


As people have alluded to, "favorites" often times != the best, or even the most favorite comments, but act more as a bookmark that can be used any number of reasons. Reading a thread that was would be horrible. I've "favorited" things that where completely horrible because I wanted to find them again to illustrate a point. I've also read plenty of comments that speak glowingly about another comment, but which had not favorites to mark it. Mark me down for the change-"favorites"-to-"bookmarks"-please camp.
posted by edgeways at 2:09 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yeah, fine, whatever. But can we talk about why the mods couldn't hold off for TEN MORE LOUSY COMMENTS before closing down the 'Christianity gets no respect on Metafilter' thread? WTF?
posted by dirtdirt at 2:14 PM on February 19, 2008 [3 favorites]


No.
posted by waraw at 2:17 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


NONONONONONONONONO
posted by interrobang at 2:19 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


But can we talk about why the mods couldn't hold off for TEN MORE LOUSY COMMENTS before closing down the 'Christianity gets no respect on Metafilter' thread? WTF?

Would it have made any difference? Doubtful.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 2:19 PM on February 19, 2008 [2 favorites]


as a matter of course, people should probably be reading the threads they're commenting in, not reading arbitrary highpoints.

Word. But in the comments, are favorites even an indication of high points? I thought they were merely bookmarks that could be made for any number of reasons. (That argument of course fails when you have people with 7k+ favorites--the idea of bookmarking is rendered meaningless when you have that many things tagged). I'll accept the favorites as bookmarks argument when the number of favorites is hidden. Until then, most evidence suggests to me that they are used as a tool to either "me too" comments in an effort to bolster a POV in an argument or they are used as a feeder bar response to snark. I suspect that the "favorite used as a way to mark a truly noteworthy comment" option is the very limited exception to the rule. Given that, encouraging favorites is a negative for this site ("favorites" hunting has really been harmful). Reading the site that way strikes me as all kinds of wrong.
posted by dios at 2:23 PM on February 19, 2008 [2 favorites]


But can we talk about why the mods couldn't hold off for TEN MORE LOUSY COMMENTS before closing down the 'Christianity gets no respect on Metafilter' thread? WTF?

Because it was at a decent stopping point, the original poster had said her piece and it had turned into a yukyuk fest of sorts. Was it at some excellent N - 10 point that we stopped it?
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:36 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


656
posted by that girl at 2:45 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


Sometimes I almost find myself wishing for the reverse in some threads, where the snarkiness is at its thickest. I see many excellent comments go unfavorited. So yeah this idea sounds worse every time I see it.

Yeah, fine, whatever. But can we talk about why the mods couldn't hold off for TEN MORE LOUSY COMMENTS before closing down the 'Christianity gets no respect on Metafilter' thread? WTF?

Revelation is so overrated.
posted by Tehanu at 2:47 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


as a matter of course, people should probably be reading the threads they're commenting in, not reading arbitrary highpoints.

Reading the site that way strikes me as all kinds of wrong.


Here's a crazy idea: you read it the way you'd like to read it, and other people can read it the way they'd like to read it.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 2:55 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


CTRL + F, type in "favorite", hit "next"
posted by jtron at 2:57 PM on February 19, 2008 [2 favorites]


Repeat after me, Metafilter's flat comment system is a design feature not a bug.

ThePinkSuperhero writes "Would it have made any difference? Doubtful."

We would have got to an eponystrical like number of comments.

And since we're rehashing closed too early threads here, if anyone is interested the original MM images from that LL post are available here
posted by Mitheral at 2:58 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


I don't like the idea of a collapse-to-favorites or favorites-only view of threads, first and foremost because favorites aren't intended as a moderation system. Skimming by favorites may be handy for the catching-up reader, but it's explicitly detrimental to the conversation itself

That makes sense. I could see a favorites-only view for archived threads, though. I don't think I'd ever use it, because if I'm searching the site for something (as opposed to just reading the front page), it's usually something I'm fairly interested in, so I'd be likely to at least skim all the comments. And because I also agree favorites are not necessarily an indication of quality. But still.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 3:00 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


jessamyn: "Because it was at a decent stopping point, the original poster had said her piece and it had turned into a yukyuk fest of sorts. Was it at some excellent N - 10 point that we stopped it?"

Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number.
posted by team lowkey at 3:04 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


Bad idea. Bad, bad idea!
posted by dg at 3:08 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


(That argument of course fails when you have people with 7k+ favorites--the idea of bookmarking is rendered meaningless when you have that many things tagged).

But then we went and added fave search, making the bookmark aspect nice and functional again for those enthusastic folks with more than a few pages of faves. Yay!

Here's a crazy idea: you read it the way you'd like to read it, and other people can read it the way they'd like to read it.

Other people can read the site however they like. I said as much, and there's scripts designed specifically for this particular brand of how-you-like. However, there's a difference between user x deciding they'd like to skip everything without favorites, and metafilter itself providing that view as an official Way To Read The Site, and that's the difference I care about. Someone can read every thread backwards and translated to French and back via Babelfish if they really want to, but I don't think making that an official site feature would be good for the site.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:11 PM on February 19, 2008 [2 favorites]


There is a possibility of reading a location to the person and it likes all but. Me with him it talks together, the trademark which is this special under hazard clearness keyl Oh there is the original which becomes your together design. But, between the user the different x it decides and when them holding in this mind all it wants jumping over without, and there is a metafilter form which provides that view with the official method which reads a location, that is different i care summary. It wants with in this realness of them, it goes out but and official location feature that when hazard it will be good, it will make a location it does not think, who the angle to translate in Babelfish light oil France U and after after loading, it reads.

I prefer to use Korean.
posted by nzero at 3:28 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


I just favorited every comment in this thread - you're going to be forced to read 'em all.
posted by KokuRyu at 3:43 PM on February 19, 2008 [2 favorites]


cortex, put that old saw away!! Greasemonkey is becoming the bane of my mefi existence. It is referenced and suggested as a panacea for so many site woes, pony requests, etc etc. Suggestions for Greasemonkey + me = :(

Unfortunately, Greasemonkey is not usable on Safari (which is the only browser I have on my iphone), and therefore - like so many brilliant pony requests that have come before (*ahem*) - the features made available via Greasemonkey exist somewhere yond like a distant dusky dream....... . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
posted by numinous at 3:45 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


Cream ain't the only thing that floats.
posted by Wolfdog at 3:52 PM on February 19, 2008


Unfortunately, Greasemonkey is not usable on Safari (which is the only browser I have on my iphone)

"unfortunately" + "cellphone webbrowsing" + "iPhone"...

I seem to recall a bunch of posts about websites that catalogue chromatically-challenged complaints of that sort.

I kid, numinous.
posted by CKmtl at 4:04 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


I really don't want MetaFilter to become another Slashdot. Maybe it's time to hide favourite counts in threads.
posted by Mikey-San at 4:17 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


But there are some threads I would just like to see the Best Of comments without having to dig through the full pile.

Can you give an example of one you'd rather read this way? I'm curious.
posted by iconomy at 4:29 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


This is a bad idea as a feature. It's fine if folks want to implement it themselves by script or bruteforce, but it would suck as a feature.
posted by OmieWise at 4:39 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


If you have to have the favorited comments pointed out to you, this is the greasemonkey script for you.
posted by flatluigi at 4:41 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


You can't have it because you never finished those threads and there are children in Africa starving for threads.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:12 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


I love how almost every comment in this thread has at least one favorite. Somebody did that as a joke, right?
posted by tarheelcoxn at 6:05 PM on February 19, 2008 [1 favorite]


Maybe it's time to hide favourite counts in threads.

I think I might agree with that.
I like being able to bookmark great posts or songs or references to things. But for the most part favoriting seems to be about voting.
posted by chococat at 7:19 PM on February 19, 2008


Maybe two features, one called "bookmark" and one called "favorite", would be more useful.

(I'm newly registered here so I feel a little uncomfortable offering suggestions so soon, but I've been reading for years and always thought that "favorite" meant that someone voted that they liked a post or comment. I didn't realize until I finally registered that it was also a bookmarking feature. Now I'm torn about whether I should "favorite" something so that I can easily find it later or "favorite" all the comments and posts I like/agree with or what.)
posted by Jacqueline at 11:21 PM on February 19, 2008


Jacqueline writes "I'm torn about whether I should 'favorite' something so that I can easily find it later or 'favorite' all the comments and posts I like/agree with or what."

Yes.
posted by Mitheral at 11:59 PM on February 19, 2008


Y'see, I like it when a comment or a post of mine gets favorited. It tells me that people like what I contribute, whether it be information or witticism. It helps people find something that should be pointed out as 'good.' Yes, people definitely 'whore' for favorites, but I see that as a problem with the poster and not the system. I definitely don't think the system should be removed; it's too ingrained in MeFi culture.

Anyway, that's my two cents. Judge it as you will.
posted by flatluigi at 12:02 AM on February 20, 2008


Greasemonkey is becoming the bane of my mefi existence. It is referenced and suggested as a panacea for so many site woes, pony requests, etc etc.

I agree.
posted by agregoli at 6:15 AM on February 20, 2008


Matt will never admit that "something that deserves a little applause" and "something I want to keep around for future reference" are orthogonal concepts. "But favorites are both!"
posted by Wolfdog at 6:22 AM on February 20, 2008


Greasemonkey is becoming the bane of my mefi existence. It is referenced and suggested as a panacea for so many site woes, pony requests, etc etc.

Yes, but it seems to me that what nearly all of these pony requests (that is, the ones which gather 'Try Greasemonkey' responses) have in common is that they're a request for something that appeals only to a small minority of site users, and something which the moderators are not interested in adding to the site. Bearing this in mind, and putting myself in the shoes of the pony-requester, I think I'd rather hear 'Try Greasemonkey' than 'No. Also, this is a dumb idea, and here are the ten previous discussions where we listed the twenty reasons why.'
posted by box at 8:14 AM on February 20, 2008


Greasemonkey is becoming the bane of my mefi existence. It is referenced and suggested as a panacea for so many site woes, pony requests, etc etc.

Box has already pretty much said this, but with every pony request, one of the things we spend time thinking about is whether this is a feature the requester wants for them and other people who might like it, or whether it's for the site to change the way it functions for everyone. If what someone wants is a slightly different look and feel, it often makes more sense to suggest ways that that person might be able to make those changes on their own. We assume that not everyone even knows what Greasemonkey is, or that there are many customized scripts that are already set up to change some of the look and feel options at MeFi. We are also aware that for various reasons not everyone can run Gresemonkey [won't run on the iphone, locked down to IE at work, for example] but for people who are free to use a different browser, it might solve some problems.

For requests that are more site wide suggestions, like changing the way favorites work for example, we have to spend a lot of time talking about how that might work and trying to get a ballpark idea of how it would affect the site overall as well as the many sub-parts of the site that are interrelated and call code from each other. At this point the site is so large that this isn't a casual undertaking and being ready to take bug reports and feedback and rewrite the faq are all parts of making a change.

In this particular case, at an admin/site management level we're not interested in adding this feature and it's been discussed here before. If you still want to read the site this way, you can by using Greasemonkey.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:46 AM on February 20, 2008


My favorites page is reportedly a distilled version of metafilter. Try that.
posted by tehloki at 5:49 PM on February 20, 2008


Favoriting should be encouraged, if only to piss off people who can't mind their own business.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:33 AM on February 21, 2008


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