I suppose the asker could be trying to escape the mafia... June 2, 2009 2:11 PM   Subscribe

Why is this AskMe about St. Paul, OR anonymous? I can't think of any possible reason for it to be so except to get around the once a week question limit (though I confess, I'm not sure if the software actually allows that). If we can get around the limit by asking any old question and making it anonymous, and the mods will approve it, why not take the limit away? And if that's not what's happening, I'm still not sure why it was approved; I just can't imagine why that question needs to be anonymous.

I guess I'm not up on the policy on this sort of thing. Most anonymous questions I see, it's obvious why it's anonymous. I guess it's not really hurting anyone, but it sets sort of a weird precedent.
posted by Caduceus to Etiquette/Policy at 2:11 PM (46 comments total)

I know why, and that's why I approved it.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:13 PM on June 2, 2009 [7 favorites]


"I am considering taking a job just outside of St. Paul"

My guess would be the asker has co-workers who read Mefi and doesn't want to tip them off that he's considering leaving.
posted by anastasiav at 2:13 PM on June 2, 2009 [4 favorites]


Because the poster does not want anyone who knows her MeFi name to know that she is considering taking a job in St Paul OR.
posted by crush-onastick at 2:13 PM on June 2, 2009


Anon is considering taking a new job. Perhaps this is not general knowledge with current coworkers who know this person's Mefi alias? Or - perhaps Anon has outstanding warrants.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 2:14 PM on June 2, 2009


I can't think of any possible reason for it to be so except to get around the once a week question limit

My, my, somebody has a one track mind.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:15 PM on June 2, 2009


And to speak to the one a week question limit, we've got some clunky stuff in place to keep people from doing that, but I think it only works one way [i.e. once you ask a real-name question you can't ask an anonyquestion that same week] and if we see people abusing it we tell them to cut that shit out.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:22 PM on June 2, 2009


Anon is relocating within the witness protection program and doesn't want to be assassinated by the cabal before he or she is able to testify against them.
posted by little e at 2:22 PM on June 2, 2009


It has to do with the Portland mafia, but I've said too much.
posted by found missing at 2:22 PM on June 2, 2009


I know why, and that's why I approved it.

"I'm Jessamyn West, and I approved this message."
posted by not that girl at 2:25 PM on June 2, 2009 [20 favorites]


Honeypot question to see who among us instinctively assumes the worst of peoples' motives?
posted by felix betachat at 2:26 PM on June 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


Who cares? If the person feels they need anonymity to ask their question, that's their business.
posted by doctor_negative at 2:27 PM on June 2, 2009 [3 favorites]


Another potentially weak precedent is allowing people to ask questions in MetaTalk that have been answered a 1000 times.
posted by Falconetti at 2:37 PM on June 2, 2009


And for more totally boring behind the scenes stuff. Sometimes (not this time) people put notes into their question that explains why they're anonymous and occasionally say "please delete this line" or MeMail explaining the anonymity for something we might otherwise not approve. I'm generally pretty okay approving stuff where I'm not sure why it's anonymous. Less so with a question where I can't even understand why it might be anonymous. This one was more the former than the latter.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:37 PM on June 2, 2009


For some reason I had so much trouble parsing the first sentence of this FPP as anything other than Why is this AskMe about St. Paul -- and why is it anonymous?
posted by shakespeherian at 2:38 PM on June 2, 2009


It's none of your business.
posted by fire&wings at 2:42 PM on June 2, 2009 [4 favorites]


I can't figure out this:

Can anyone recommend any brutally honest, diary/journal blogs? ... For example: http://rubystark.com.

[Anonymous because I write rubystark.com and don't want to connect it with my real-life MeFi account.]


Is it the green or the anonymity that exempts this from the usual Banhammer of Doom for self-linking?
posted by Joe Beese at 2:42 PM on June 2, 2009


Self-linking = bad for FPPs... pretty much okay elsewhere.
posted by Pantengliopoli at 2:48 PM on June 2, 2009


Oh geez, I didn't even read that far down, was just thinking "oh that looks okay" removed the self-linkiness which is actually pretty much not okay on AskMe unless it's mission critical to the post.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:52 PM on June 2, 2009


Once I accidentally asked a question anonymously--I still have no idea how it happened.
posted by notswedish at 2:57 PM on June 2, 2009


For some reason I had so much trouble parsing the first sentence of this FPP as anything other than Why is this AskMe about St. Paul -- and why is it anonymous?

I thought it said "Why is this AskMe about St. Paul? Or, why is it anonymous?" [Pick a question!]
posted by desjardins at 3:02 PM on June 2, 2009 [2 favorites]


grr, first line should have been italicized there.
posted by desjardins at 3:02 PM on June 2, 2009


Doh! Thanks for the clarification -- thought it was just a blue thing.
posted by Pantengliopoli at 3:14 PM on June 2, 2009


(mods please make the rest of this comment anonymous)

HEY! YOU SUCKERS, YOU CAN'T TELL WHO I AM RIGHT NOW!

HOW YOU LIKE THAT
posted by Greg Nog at 3:26 PM on June 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


Whenever I see an anonymous question where it's not immediately obvious why the question would be anonymous, I consider a couple of real-life/online conflict possibilities, namely:

a) Some people the OP knows in real life also know his/her MeFi handle, and do not want his RL friends/family/coworkers/acquaintances to know what he's/she's asking.

b) Some people the OP knows in real life do not know his/her MeFi handle, but there is enough info in the post that someone who knows him/her in real life might connect him/her to the handle, and the OP doesn't want his/her RL friends/family/coworkers/acquaintances knowing the OP wrote some of the other things he's/she's written on MeFi.

Usually at least one of these two is plausible for the anonymous question.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 3:28 PM on June 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


posted by Caduceus Why is this AskMe about St. Paul, OR anonymous?

Because Jessamyn actually knows far more about this subject than I think you can imagine.
posted by mattdidthat at 3:42 PM on June 2, 2009 [19 favorites]


I just can't imagine why that question needs to be anonymous.

DevilsAdvocate offers two good all-purpose reasons you can imagine in the future.
posted by mediareport at 4:40 PM on June 2, 2009


Imagine there's no AskMe;
It's easy if you try.
No yahoo answers below us,
Above us only "why?"
Imagine all the Anons
Living with no advice

Imagine there's no intarnets
it isn't hard to do
Nothing to flame out or snark for
no wikipedia, too
imagine all the MeFites
living life in peace...

you may say I'm a noob
and you're not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
and shell out $5, SAIT

[/me ducks to avoid thrown rotten fruit and vegetables]
posted by not_on_display at 5:29 PM on June 2, 2009 [9 favorites]


It's good that we have people like you to moderate anonymous questions, since as far as I know, there isn't a dedicated team of people whose job that is.
posted by !Jim at 5:47 PM on June 2, 2009


Because things there cost more than in town, that's why.
posted by liketitanic at 5:53 PM on June 2, 2009


Do not question Jessamyn, she is the EYES AND EARS OF THIS INSTITUTION MY FRIENDS.
posted by The Straightener at 6:14 PM on June 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


It has to do with the Portland mafia, but I've said too much.

You mean the PDX Mafia, doncha?
posted by davejay at 6:21 PM on June 2, 2009


No Portland MAINE, for the last time....
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:51 PM on June 2, 2009


anonymous is clearly OREGONIST.
posted by qvantamon at 6:59 PM on June 2, 2009


"I'm Jessamyn West, and I approved this message."

Is Jessamyn running for Governor next year, or is it Senator?
posted by lukemeister at 8:05 PM on June 2, 2009


I would be a pole dancer before I'd run for public office.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:11 PM on June 2, 2009 [3 favorites]


Make it a straw pole, and you've got my vote.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 8:12 PM on June 2, 2009 [3 favorites]


I would be a pole dancer before I'd run for public office.

I don't see these as mutually exclusive for you.
posted by found missing at 8:15 PM on June 2, 2009


I don't see these as mutually exclusive for you.

Famously attempted by Mary Carey.

Actually now that I think of it, strippers running for office seems to happen every couple years.
posted by dead cousin ted at 8:22 PM on June 2, 2009


I would be a pole dancer before I'd run for public office.

Huh? The south pole is strictly research bases, there's venue for dance troupes.

And I seriously doubt Matt would put your desk out the balcony. Geez, chill out.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:25 PM on June 2, 2009


I think it was anonymous because they were being discrete for Minneapolis, KS. Twins separated at birth.
posted by ALongDecember at 9:10 PM on June 2, 2009


And I mean discreet of course. Wish I was a math major so I could make a funny joke about finite sets or something.
posted by ALongDecember at 9:15 PM on June 2, 2009 [1 favorite]


It seems like I see people confuse "discrete" for "discreet" continuously.

Oh. Wait.
posted by Pronoiac at 11:02 PM on June 2, 2009 [3 favorites]


jessamyn posted the question and doesn't want to freak out the meetup.
posted by ActingTheGoat at 4:08 AM on June 3, 2009


Dear AskMe, can I vote for a stripper? signed, anonymous

(wait, did I do that right?)
posted by not_on_display at 7:42 AM on June 3, 2009


Who cares.
posted by Zambrano at 1:36 PM on June 3, 2009


Well I do, because homophones are fun.
posted by found missing at 1:56 PM on June 3, 2009


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