How long you read meta before joining? October 14, 2008 9:35 AM   Subscribe

Just wondering how long the typical person reads this site before ponying up the $5?

I read this site for about a year before joining, then waited 2 months before my first askme, 9 months before my first project post, and 13 months before making my first FPP. Is this typical?

I do remember reading something I had to comment on. I don't think I did though, since I went back to my first comment and am pretty sure that wouldn't have been the one that made me pull the trigger.
posted by cjorgensen to MetaFilter-Related at 9:35 AM (125 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

forever/never (for the typical person)
posted by Mister_A at 9:43 AM on October 14, 2008

Why did you wait to do all of those things. I don't get it.
posted by Zambrano at 9:43 AM on October 14, 2008

Hmm. Hard to say. I can't remember life before joining MetaFilter.
posted by chinston at 9:43 AM on October 14, 2008 [2 favorites]

I'm still waiting to pay 5 dollars. I'm still not sure if it's worth it yet.
posted by Stynxno at 9:45 AM on October 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

A year-and-a-half? Two years? That would be the ballpark. It started out much more casually, voyeuristically lurking AskMe before I actually started following things concertedly, though, so it is hard to date it well.

The trigger-pull for spending the cash was being in India and having (at the time) absolutely nothing to do during the waking day, except reading work-safe, text based internet. It was far too much MeFi to lurk, I needed to be able to add favorites.

My first Ask predated my concrete plans to purchase an account, so it was up pretty quickly. My first comment seems to have been within the week of registering, and the other things I still haven't mustered up the mustard to do.
posted by paisley henosis at 9:46 AM on October 14, 2008

2-3 years, I think. Then again, I came up with the $5 as soon as I realized it was an option, after missing at least one sign up period by hours.
posted by QIbHom at 9:49 AM on October 14, 2008

I lurked for seven or eight months - mostly in askme, which I found via lifehacker's roundup - before I ponied up $5 because there was a question that I just HAD to answer. I don't remember what it was anymore, and I'm too lazy to go look.

In answer to Zambrano, I waited because I wasn't sure I had anything to contribute. I also wasn't sure what Metafilter was "like" - I haven't spent a lot of time on sites like this, and the few, years ago, where I did hang out weren't always very pleasant or fun sometimes. I wanted to really check y'all out.
posted by rtha at 9:52 AM on October 14, 2008

I lurked for about 3-4 years before getting an account. I would've registered earlier, but my bank didn't offer ATM cards that worked as debit/credit cards until then.

Fucking backwater hicks.
posted by Pope Guilty at 9:53 AM on October 14, 2008

I read off and on since 2000 before joining in 2007.
posted by waraw at 9:57 AM on October 14, 2008

I didn't pay. I just winked at the right roadie and they let me in.
posted by jonmc at 9:59 AM on October 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

I lurked since 2004, registered in 2006, and paid later that year. I still have not made a single FPP.
posted by Electrius at 10:01 AM on October 14, 2008

About 18 months for me, until there was a post related to an event that was taking place about twenty feet from where I was working.
posted by ob at 10:02 AM on October 14, 2008

I just winked at the right roadie and they let me in.

"wink"? Is that what they're calling it these days?
posted by bondcliff at 10:05 AM on October 14, 2008

I never even paid attention to MeTa until I joined. The few times I looked it seemed like a bunch of anal retentive whiners and assorted varieties of ne'er-do-wells. But once I joined up and began thinking of this place as a community rather than just another site for interesting links MeTa became my first stop every morning.

As for MeFi - I popped in a few times a week for about a year before finally wanting to join, but by then I had to wait almost another year until the $5 gate opened. Second best five bucks I ever spent.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 10:05 AM on October 14, 2008

I lurked for a couple of years, I think. Some of it was enforced lurking: signups were cruelly closed for a long time, and I wasn't clever enough to work out the special secret trick, which involved adding a number to the URL of the signup page or something.

I have no idea why I then waited a year to make post (though I don't post or comment that much in general).
posted by jack_mo at 10:06 AM on October 14, 2008

I saved $1 per year of murking lore before registering. Honestly, I never felt like my presence here would be of benefit since I never felt like I had much to contribute besides snark. I discovered AskMe late, though, and decided that was worth the $5 in itself. Now I'm here, posting in MetaTalk.
posted by cimbrog at 10:06 AM on October 14, 2008

Oh, and once I got a desk job with internet, I was here enough that I really felt that I owed the $5 for services rendered, at the least. So how much is a MetaFilter Platinum account?
posted by cimbrog at 10:09 AM on October 14, 2008

What? People pay for this shit?
posted by grateful at 10:11 AM on October 14, 2008

If I remember correctly, I lurked for about 5 years before joining. Like jack_mo, some of that time was spent futilely attempting to sign up, only to see that registration was closed. Then I forgot about MeFi for a while when I had kids. Now my kids only suck up part of my energy, though, so I'm back.
posted by mitzyjalapeno at 10:14 AM on October 14, 2008

I started reading around 2001, but didn't join until 2007. I kind of wish I'd joined earlier, since I would have had more time for posting a few years ago.
posted by Rangeboy at 10:16 AM on October 14, 2008

Wow, I'm easy. Less than six months for me.
posted by desjardins at 10:21 AM on October 14, 2008

I lurked on and off for about 3 years before registering. Once I started reading it every day, I joined about 3 months after. And that was after repeated almost-registers ("user did not finish the sign up process").

Some people I know registered right away. Others, including some who read more than I do, still have not registered. In their case, I believe it's performance anxiety. I think once people are familiar with MetaFilter, the idea of contributing becomes a bit...intimidating. But, for others, paying the $5 right upfront isn't a big deal, and perhaps they have the self-control to only post every so often. For me, paying the $5 was equivalent to investing in the website as a near-daily activity.
posted by lunit at 10:21 AM on October 14, 2008

I read the site a lot towards its beginning, then on and off for a bit. It was really AskMe that pulled me back into reading regularly, and when I found myself emailing a couple of people with answers I realized it would just be easier to join.
posted by mikepop at 10:21 AM on October 14, 2008

I started reading in 2002, and joined last year. When registrations opened, I tried vainly to trade a beta login to some sites I had access to for somebody forking over the 5 bucks (yeah, I'm that cheap), but eventually just paid up myself.
posted by Bernt Pancreas at 10:26 AM on October 14, 2008

I lurked for more than a year - exclusively on Ask.
I joined to ask a question for a friend that I had no clue how to answer without help.
I still haven't figured out how to craft a decent question, though.

I just started reading metachat maybe a month ago, and I make about one visit a week to see the blue.

The blue is scary. The green is friendly.
I don't know why they're on the same site.
[and people keep calling this part grey, but it looks purple to me]
posted by Acari at 10:27 AM on October 14, 2008

I lurked for a couple of years until 2004 because you bastards wouldn't let me register.
posted by octothorpe at 10:29 AM on October 14, 2008

I read the site for about four years before signing up.
posted by EarBucket at 10:32 AM on October 14, 2008

metafilter: a bunch of anal retentive whiners and assorted varieties of ne'er-do-wells.
posted by cjorgensen at 10:32 AM on October 14, 2008

I'm from the pre-5$ days.

When I started lurking around here, I said something whenever I wanted to say it.

The imagined literati standards of the blue may have changed, but I haven't. Some days that outlook gets me in trouble, some days it doesn't. I also think some people take the blue waaaay to seriously sometimes, but that doesn't mean I don't still enjoy the posts and overall commentary.

I say "Speak up when you want to and don't worry about what others think... you'll never please everyone anyway."

Oh... and I still mean to pay someone $5 eventually!
posted by matty at 10:32 AM on October 14, 2008

When were the recent French riots? That was my intro to Metafilter. I asked a friend if he knew of a good site where there might be some functional insight into what was going down ... and voila.

I didn't pay the $5 until this summer. No particular reason other than frustration at not being able to comment on some moronic statement or other. As for AskMeFi and MetaTalk, I honestly wasn't even aware of them until I'd paid my $5 and finally got around to reading the whole FAQ.
posted by philip-random at 10:36 AM on October 14, 2008

I started reading in '00 (or maybe '99) but I felt like I needed the time to get to know how to interact here...then still get it wrong from time to time.

I'm sometimes glad I waited until I had to pay because then I can tell myself I've paid a penance for my idiocy.
posted by batmonkey at 10:37 AM on October 14, 2008

Zambrano: Why did you wait to do all of those things. I don't get it.

Well, I didn't join right away because meta was one of many sites that I read to find interesting links. I didn't spend a lot of time on any one site. I hit fark, digg, and a few others I have forgotten. Eventually it got to where I was only reading here, but still had nothing I really needed to contribute. Sure I would have had I an account, but didn't see a reason to to go through the hassle just to leave one of 400 comments.

I waited for the askme, because honestly I never even clicked the link for the longest time.

I waited for the FPP because as someone put it "performance anxiety." I really was afraid I'd do it wrong (or just poorly).

And the as for "talk" I think you really have to read the site for a while before you even care it's there (at least for me).

I didn't realize that there were enrollment periods. I thought anyone could join at any time.
posted by cjorgensen at 10:40 AM on October 14, 2008

I lurked till registration opened then got in the first try due to a bug. (Whee!) That was before Ask even existed.
posted by dame at 10:42 AM on October 14, 2008

I must have been lurking daily for at least a few years, I actually just ponyed up the 5$ right now. I'd say it was a combination of intimidation and laziness.
posted by 8088 at 10:42 AM on October 14, 2008

Lurked since 2002. Joined for some reason, don't quite remember.
posted by Damn That Television at 10:45 AM on October 14, 2008

I waited for the FPP because as someone put it "performance anxiety." I really was afraid I'd do it wrong (or just poorly).

It's just a website. It's not real life. Don't take it so seriously.
posted by Zambrano at 10:50 AM on October 14, 2008 [2 favorites]

Six or seven years here. By the time I'd read enough to be interested, membership was closed. Then it was on that timed deal, and I never managed to catch it at the right time. Then it was closed again for a while, and by the time it was reopened (at the $5 rate) I'd gotten used to lurking.

But lo, here I am after all these long years.
posted by echo target at 11:01 AM on October 14, 2008

I waited 4 months. I waited two years for my sock puppet.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 11:09 AM on October 14, 2008

I am pre-pay. I bought some ad impressions though, a few years after joining.
posted by TheophileEscargot at 11:15 AM on October 14, 2008

It took years for the first account, then mere minutes for sock puppets 1 through 7. Now it's about every six months.
posted by blue_beetle at 11:21 AM on October 14, 2008

I'm going to join any day now.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:31 AM on October 14, 2008

2 or 3 years, started reading because of a deathly boring period in my life. Joined because of Zambrano's comment above.

I can't believe it actually says "Everyone needs a hug"; I thought that was just an in-joke.
posted by Wrinkled Stumpskin at 11:37 AM on October 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

Don't remember.

It appears I made my first comment about a month after I joined, so maybe I did my lurking after joining instead of before.
posted by elfgirl at 11:51 AM on October 14, 2008

About 3 years of lurking. I wasn't sure you people could handle the truth!
posted by JaredSeth at 11:57 AM on October 14, 2008

I'm so lame.

I got introduced to AskMe about a month before I joined. I remember thinking that it was a really cool site that had the potential to be an awesome internet haunt, and I didn't want it to fall by the wayside like so many other communities I'd discovered then forgotten about, so I bought the person who introduced me an account, and bought myself an account, and figured after having spent the money I would be more inclined to remember to check it every so often.

Before I knew it, 'every so often' turned into 'thirty seven times a day or else I start spasming'.
posted by Phire at 11:58 AM on October 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

7 years. I now have two sock puppets.
posted by Jofus at 12:04 PM on October 14, 2008

I lurked at most 2-3 months. I kept seeing the AskMe roundup on Lifehacker and decided that this would be a really useful and fun site to be a member of. And I like to give advice, so staying silent on questions that I knew the answers to was impossible. I still have yet to post a FPP. I can't think of anything interesting, but mostly I'm scared.
posted by bristolcat at 12:25 PM on October 14, 2008

8 years. I was poor for a long time.
posted by doteatop at 12:26 PM on October 14, 2008

How do you join this place again?
posted by clearly at 12:33 PM on October 14, 2008

I lurked for about 18 months while sign-ups were turned off, and joined the first week after the $5 rule.
I waited 2 and a half years before making an FPP. I was so afraid of it I even started three MeTa threads before I made an FPP.
posted by roofus at 12:38 PM on October 14, 2008

Hours. When I found Askme, it was because I needed to ask a question. It seemed like a good idea at the time. I guess I'm above average, eh?
posted by b33j at 12:42 PM on October 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

Read for a few months, and then got really worked up about some bad info in an AskMe that I simply had to correct. That's what the crappy answers are for – to suck you in.
posted by roger ackroyd at 12:46 PM on October 14, 2008

The answer is FOUR YEARS.
posted by Sys Rq at 12:53 PM on October 14, 2008

I think I read for about 2 years before joining. I wanted to make sure I knew how to act before I got on here. I still haven't made an FPP because I am afraid of no one liking it or it being a hidden double. I joined MetaChat and I am less afraid over there since there is less yelling.
posted by rmless at 1:00 PM on October 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

Joined in February of 2005, but had been reading off-and-on since 2003 and got serious around late Fall of 2004. Didn't really discover AskMe or MeTa until after I joined. I rarely post.
posted by mrmojoflying at 1:02 PM on October 14, 2008

I joined MeCha in 2006, so I must've been reading MeFi earlier than that... 3 years?
posted by daniel_charms at 1:09 PM on October 14, 2008

Anyway, to be serious, I stumbled upon MetaFilter while searching for information on real-world use of antithrombotics/antiplatelets in the cath lab setting in 2001 or 2002. I had no intention of joining for some time, but used to search regularly for answers to obscure things that might be posted there. Then one day I decided to join and could not. I was sorely pissed. I stopped lurking for some time, and my wife bore from her womb our son. That's just a coincidence though. Then I tried again in like 2004 or something, and could not sign up. GRRRR!

Finally, in 2006, I offered a bribe of 5 American Dinars and my membership was accepted. MetaFilter has never been the same.
posted by Mister_A at 1:18 PM on October 14, 2008

posted by dirty lies at 1:23 PM on October 14, 2008

I lurked for about a year I think with a few visits before then... with increasing frequency of visits it was a D&D thread that finally drew me out. 10 days later was my first fpp.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 1:35 PM on October 14, 2008

jonmc: "I didn't pay. I just winked at the right roadie and they let me in."

Now I feel ripped off - I had to do waaaay more than wink!

I can't believe how long people waited - Within a few minutes of first seeing this place, I was totally hooked and the only reason I delayed at all was that sign-ups were closed at the time.
posted by dg at 1:46 PM on October 14, 2008

I lurked for about 4 years. From early 2002 because cortex turned me on to the site... And then in 2006 he pinned me to the floor with a shotgun and took my five dollars. Been a member ever since..
posted by French Fry at 1:54 PM on October 14, 2008

I lurked off and on for a couple of years because mathowie would not let me join. Perhaps he sensed that I was a misfit - not really a nerd, no cellphone, not even a camera. The rare open admissions were closed by the time a lurker in the Pacific time zone got a little work done and checked the site.
Finally November 18, 2004 happened and the 'floodgates opened' as someone observed and I bribed my way in. Do I really think mathowie kept me specifically out? Sure, and I think there are other paranoid whiners with special snowflake complexes here.
posted by Cranberry at 2:01 PM on October 14, 2008

I lurked for about 3-4 months before I joined. Pre-$5 days but I have made various contributions over the years, if you must know.
posted by Lynsey at 2:07 PM on October 14, 2008

I think I started reading the site at some point in late 2000, turned on to it by a friend in college. Lurked for however many months before signing up in April '01; I waited another year to make my first FPP, and another four years after that to make my second.

It took me less than a year to make my first (dumb-ish) post to Metatalk; I think I took to this section fairly early, though I remained a fairly casual poster and commenter overall for at least my first two or three years on the site.

I was around before AskMe and Music were, so the wait time there is kind of arbitrary, but I was hot for Music out of the gate (I'd actually been one of the people excited about the prior, years-earlier iteration that Matt threw together and then cruelly abandoned, alack).
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:17 PM on October 14, 2008

I found the site and lurked for about six months until I had a question and then forked over the fiver.
posted by NoraCharles at 2:20 PM on October 14, 2008

I started reading MetaFilter February 23rd 2001, tried to sign up on September 10th, 2002 thought I had messed up, tried again on November 26th 2004 and succeeded this time. I made my first post to the Front page nine days later.

If you're wondering how I remember all these dates it's because I have them tattooed on my dick (which is embarrassing to reference in a café, I tell ya, but one does what one must).
posted by Kattullus at 2:34 PM on October 14, 2008

I think I joined almost immediately after I found MeFi, but that was back in mid-'01, when signups were open & free. I started commenting right out of the gate, and was relatively active through late 2001 and 2002, although I've only ever made 2 FFPs. Dropped out for a while, then came back after Lifehacker kept linking to AskMe. I love AskMe. (AskMe gave me an awesome haircut!)

I had been gone so long that not only had I both lost AND forgotten my password, but I didn't even have access to the email account I had when I signed up. mathowie was kind enough to send my password to my new email address. Yay!
posted by epersonae at 3:48 PM on October 14, 2008

2002: lurk, stymied attempt to sign up
2003: lurk, lurk
2004: lurk, lurk lurk
2005: lurkity lurk lurk
2006: lurk lurk lurk lurk lurk
2007: lurk lurk lurk hmmm, maybe I should pay the 5 bucks, lurk lurk
2008: lurk lurk. Oh wait! I can use my credit card!

and here I am. First metatalk comment. May never post an FPP to the blue.
I had the most awesome username all ready to go and then forgot it in my excitement to sign up and had to run with the first thing that came to mind.
posted by Miss Otis' Egrets at 3:57 PM on October 14, 2008

Years of lurking before ponying up the $5, but then I'm kinda shy (and cheap?)
posted by The Ardship of Cambry at 4:10 PM on October 14, 2008

I think I lurked between 6 and 9 months before signing up. PayPal was the barrier--I didn't have an account. Then someone told me that I could use a credit card via PayPal, and I was IN.
posted by Stewriffic at 4:10 PM on October 14, 2008

I lurked for over a year (probably over two years, or more) before joining. I wanted to join so badly, but I don't have paypal and I don't use credit cards, so I just sat back from the outside looking in. Then one day right before Christmas in 2006, vacapinta posted that he would buy accounts for the first 10 people to email him. I emailed him and he paid for my account. I'm forever grateful, but I stopped making an issue of my gratefulness after the first few months because I didn't want him to think I was a weirdo.
posted by amyms at 4:43 PM on October 14, 2008

I can't believe it actually says "Everyone needs a hug"; I thought that was just an in-joke.

I thought the same thing about "flagged as fantastic"!

Lurked for a few months back in '04 until they took my $5.
posted by A dead Quaker at 4:43 PM on October 14, 2008

I don't remember, but 4-5 years, based on where I was living when I remember first reading the blue. I've lurked intermittently since then and I ponied up my $5 last week.
posted by immlass at 4:46 PM on October 14, 2008

Pre pay

I am not much of a FPP person but I like to butt in.........

I did send Matt a $5 dollar bill for the server when ever that was in my pre credit card days.
posted by bjgeiger at 4:49 PM on October 14, 2008

I started seriously reading Metafilter after feelinglistless FPP'd a project of mine in Oct 2004 - but didn't sign up until Aug 2007 and made my first FPP about a month later.
posted by crossoverman at 5:25 PM on October 14, 2008

6 or 7 months. Mostly on the green. Then I got sucked over here.
posted by Quidam at 5:39 PM on October 14, 2008

Started reading in 2001, then let one or two opps to join swim by (pay to post on a forum?), then joined in the Great Influx of late 2004.
posted by telstar at 5:43 PM on October 14, 2008

several years.
posted by johnofjack at 5:45 PM on October 14, 2008

And I thought I would be a long term skulker what with having spent two and a half years with my nose pressed against the glass before I ponied up, but clearly I am a rank amateur. It makes me wonder how many people reading this right now will not make a post until 2014.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 6:26 PM on October 14, 2008

6-7 years here. do I win?
posted by supermedusa at 6:28 PM on October 14, 2008

It makes me wonder how many people reading this right now will not make a post until 2014.

And by the we shall all be considered old timers!! MWAHAHAHA - dear god that's a scary thought.
posted by Phire at 6:58 PM on October 14, 2008

5 years.

I was motivated to finally register by this thread. This is my first comment.
posted by Lapin at 6:59 PM on October 14, 2008 [4 favorites]

I first stopped by in 2002. I have recently been unable to go more than a week without a full review of discussions on MeFi, MeTa, and AskMe. I just became a member today (first post!), largely due to this thread.

Hello world!
posted by abc123xyzinfinity at 7:01 PM on October 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

If anyone remembers some huge drama flameout involving dirtnumbangelboy and a sockpuppet (the details are fuzzy for me...), that was my first introduction to Mefi. It was linked on an internet drama site I liked to read. I guess I lurked between whenever that was and, uh, my sign up date (March 6, 2007).
posted by srrh at 7:02 PM on October 14, 2008

6 years. Started reading in 2001, joined in 2007.
posted by hecho de la basura at 7:02 PM on October 14, 2008

Wait, MetaFilter runs on PST?!? And cheers to my new mate above, Lapin, who has also just registered!
posted by abc123xyzinfinity at 7:03 PM on October 14, 2008

posted by srrh at 7:05 PM on October 14, 2008

It was cold that November morning. I had wondered by the gates of Metafilter daily, hearing the laughter, seeing the bright lights inside. I longed to enter, to be part of this incredible place.

It was too late when I realized the laughter came from the many bubblewrapped rooms and the bright lights were the raging fires of MetaTalk.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:06 PM on October 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

5 years, I reckon... started late '00/early '01 or thereabouts, and finally got around to registering in '05... man, what a valuable low user id I could have had... :(
posted by russm at 7:17 PM on October 14, 2008

I could have had a camera. I lurked for for a couple of years, then tried to sign up, but registrations were closed. Waited another 4 years or so to finally sign up.
posted by ActingTheGoat at 7:50 PM on October 14, 2008

Dude: years. Many years. I actually had an account back when they were free, which was deleted because I never used it. Didn't have anything to say.

Can't remember how I found my way here, although I think it was via a link (for some reason I want to say over at memepool, although it might have been somewhere else) to A Whole Lotta Nothing. My earliest distinct Metafilter memory is reloading over and over again on 9/11, actually, while desperately trying to reach people on the phone. Cliché, but that's when I realized what an incredible place this was.
posted by penduluum at 8:05 PM on October 14, 2008

I came via BoingBoing back in October 2nd, 2001 and read the site daily from that point on. If it weren't for askme I would have never joined last year - I have joined only two other online communities (bookfilter and mecha). Guess I am just not a joiner.
posted by saucysault at 8:07 PM on October 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

I think I started reading around 2000, just paid this year. So that would be 8 years for me. I think I'm average, I have a few friends who lurk but don't participate.
posted by pokeedog at 8:55 PM on October 14, 2008

I joined about six months after I first found askme, and about four months after I started visiting regularly. My boyfriend pointed me to askme one day and I thought it was mildly interesting and then forgot all about it, but he made an account and kept coming back to it. I posted two or three times under his name and got a best answer once, and then I got all excited and sprung for an account myself.

I still haven't made a fpp, and I've only asked a couple questions in askme. I visit the site multiple times a day, though.
posted by lilac girl at 8:57 PM on October 14, 2008

I forget where I found MeFi, I think possibly via Slashdot, around 2003? I read until April '06, then joined up. I think my first contribution was an Ask post, and I've been a relatively low-level contributor since then. I really need to work on my ask questions-to-answers ratio, however.
posted by Alterscape at 9:05 PM on October 14, 2008

I found Mefi from kuro5hin, before it went all wonky. That was probably 2000 or 2001. I joined just this year. I was a pretty active lurker, too--I was a lurker-leader who caused many other lurkers to follow the site.
posted by pantagrool at 9:35 PM on October 14, 2008

Back when I joined there was no $5 fee, all you had to do was show up with an onion on your belt--which was the style at the time.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 1:46 AM on October 15, 2008 [2 favorites]

Actually, joined after my (now defunct) blog was linked here, but didn't really participate (or even lurk) for something like five years. Then I started lurking and one day remembered I was a member. Some serious fumbling about wondering what my username/password was, haha.

True story.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 1:51 AM on October 15, 2008

I lurked for three years before signing up. I wanted to join sooner but like amyms I had no credit card. I remember that christmas actually, I was in deep lock down submersion finishing my masters and Mefi and Meta were my web outlets. The one evening I didn't read metatalk vacapinta posted their incredibly kind offer of free sign ups. I was genuinely depressed the next day when I realised what I had missed.
posted by minifigs at 3:34 AM on October 15, 2008

About 5 years.
posted by sandraregina at 7:02 AM on October 15, 2008

8 frikken years. I kept almost joining every few months, but I couldn't find a screenname I liked.
posted by The Whelk at 7:29 AM on October 15, 2008

04/02/2004, mathowie lifted the velvet rope and accidentally forgot to tell the bouncer to only let 100 people in. So I shoved my way in and have been here ever since.

Started reading the site around early 2000 or so, thought about joining off and on for a while, but never got around to it. Actually went as far as filling out the reg form but never hit "submit" because at the time I figured "I can always do this tomorrow".

Well, just my luck, that was the day before mathowie closed registration for years.
posted by caution live frogs at 7:53 AM on October 15, 2008

Wow, I am totally digging how many people signed up because of this thread, then jumped in and said so. That's so Meta!


Oh man.
posted by SpiffyRob at 8:38 AM on October 15, 2008

Started reading in mid-2001, but didn't pay to join until August 2002. Posted a comment as soon as I joined. Didn't say anything in MeTa until early 2007. Didn't ask or answer in Ask until 2004.

To this day, I have not created a FPP. Too scared, I guess.
posted by fijiwriter at 9:02 AM on October 15, 2008

For whatever reason, which I don't entirely understand, I read MeFi for about two years before I actually signed up. I can't even remember the post that finally spurred me to do so, but it may have been more the steady paycheck I acquired.
posted by six-or-six-thirty at 9:24 AM on October 15, 2008

The Great Metafilter Membership Drive of '08

posted by blue_beetle at 11:48 AM on October 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

I am the opposite of almost everyone. I read for about a month, and then decided I had a burning question that maybe the MeFites could answer. I did know about the $5 right away, and that's why I held off initially. Not because of the $5 per se, but other forums [usu. ones offering tech support] where I have had to pay, they usually suck. Then again, those sites deny you access to the answer until you pay.
posted by alice ayres at 11:59 AM on October 15, 2008

I lurked for about two years, first just occasionally stopping by and then reading more and more on the blue, and finally realizing there was a Green and a Grey too (!) before I signed up. So, two years before I made the jump.

And even then, I felt out of place for about the first 5 months, because I had come to respect the low-number Mefites so much. I was worried to even post for fear of saying something stupid.

Now, of course, I never shut up.
posted by misha at 12:03 PM on October 15, 2008

About 15 minutes. Maybe 10. Sans $5, of course.
posted by signal at 1:22 PM on October 15, 2008

Ive been a reader for.. 5-6 years?, and just signed up the other month. I remember trying to sign up years back and the sign up was closed for some reason. Always meant to sign up, and just decided to do so recently.
posted by edman at 1:57 PM on October 15, 2008

2-3 years for me. Then someone I know was the subject of an FPP and I felt compelled to join.
posted by slimepuppy at 2:51 PM on October 15, 2008

Maybe 6 years. Signed up, uhh, earlier this year.
posted by turgid dahlia at 2:54 PM on October 15, 2008

I remember lurking here for about a year before registering (no $5 needed, yay!). I only registered because I read a rumor that registrations were soon to be shut down and I wanted to get in on a good thing, just under the wire.
And then, I continued to lurk.

I really don't deserve an account.
posted by vewystwange at 3:07 PM on October 15, 2008

None of us do, really. Hugs!
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:18 PM on October 15, 2008

Around 3 years. Really got into reading AskMe regularly in the months before I joined and eventually I joined when I thought I could help someone on a particular question. Got a best answer for it so it was worth the $5 and I was hooked from then on.
posted by fire&wings at 3:35 PM on October 15, 2008

I tried to join right after coming across MeFi for the first time (some time in 2001? I had stuck with Plastic out of reflexive loyalty to the late lamented Suck, but in a period in which Plastic was unreadable due to a mass-posting anti-semite, I found my way here and thought it was pretty good*) but registrations were closed, and then I never felt compelled to post for the next 5 years or so, but finally joined due to being unable to resist answering a question about mute swan cygnets.

* Although I think it's much better now.
posted by Your Time Machine Sucks at 4:06 PM on October 15, 2008

Mr. Onanist must have put me on to the Blue about '02/03 I think, and I happily lurked away until June this year, at which point I think I spotted yet another FPP in which I was unable to lower my trousers and drop a great big steaming turd participate, and it was too much for me to bear. I then recounted my dismay to my girlfriend who then called me a tight arsed weenie or some such and goaded me into coughing up the money so I would stop my bitching, a move she now regrets.
posted by nudar at 4:24 PM on October 15, 2008

For me, it was like 7 years. If I remember correctly, I came from HuSi or Kuro5hin maybe, and after lurking for a couple of years I tried to sign up... but by then stupid PayPal wasn't taking Guatemalan credit cards.

OK mom just called someone crashed into her car gotta go. Long story short: I wanted to sign up for years but couldn't until last year or so.
posted by papafrita at 5:27 PM on October 15, 2008

5 years, and I have this notion I got here from Mister Pants.
posted by Coatlicue at 6:15 PM on October 15, 2008

4-5 years? Something like that.
posted by the littlest brussels sprout at 6:22 PM on October 15, 2008

Man, I can't remember how I first came to the site. I think it was from Lore and the Spinnwebe (Hi Spinn! Finish the site soon? maybe?) and just kept coming back.
posted by The Whelk at 8:27 PM on October 15, 2008

At least 5 years. For a fact I talked about the site with a friend who is a member at an art event, and I have momentos from that event that date it. (My own memory is worthless for dates.)
posted by Lesser Shrew at 9:16 PM on October 15, 2008

I read the site for a little less than a year. Then I was terrified to post anything because I didn't want to waste anyone's time with comments that weren't awesome. I waited, I think, a month before I posted any comments, and then a week or so later I did my first AskMe.

I still haven't posted an FPP, because I am terrified.
posted by Nattie at 5:20 AM on October 16, 2008

I lurked for a couple of years before ponying up my $5 this year. For a long time I had been "favoriting" comments by copying and pasting them into my personal collection, and I finally decided I needed a better way of keeping track of them, so I signed up.

It was the green that hooked me. Originally I had found AskMe while searching online for a forum where people would talk frankly about their emotional experience in relationships. I wanted in-depth relationship advice that didn't insult my intelligence or pander to sexist Mars-and-Venus stereotypes. AskMe was the only place I found it, so here I am.
posted by velvet winter at 11:38 AM on October 19, 2008

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