Too many links in post February 20, 2002 6:31 AM   Subscribe

How many links does a front page post have before they become irritating?
posted by Spoon to Etiquette/Policy at 6:31 AM (25 comments total)

As far as I'm concerned, it's not the number of links, it's the usability of them. Immediately adjacent links with different hrefs have very few interface cues about their behavior (fewer still for browsers that don't support hovering) unless you scrub the whole row with the pointer, and playing hunt-and-click isn't my idea of a good time.
posted by majick at 7:06 AM on February 20, 2002


The more, the merrier. (As long as they are supporting)
posted by ColdChef at 7:32 AM on February 20, 2002


Don't like 'em? Don't click 'em.
posted by Optamystic at 7:55 AM on February 20, 2002


50 to 100 is annoying...mkay?
posted by clavdivs at 7:56 AM on February 20, 2002


I agree with ColdChef. As long as they support the thread, there's not really a problem. For example, this thread on MeFi a while back left me in awe {damn, there's a whole lotta linkin' going on}. However, this one on MeTa didn't.
posted by eyeballkid at 7:58 AM on February 20, 2002


Hey guys!

How annoying can I be before I get really annoying?

--Spoon
posted by dogmatic at 8:01 AM on February 20, 2002


I can be much much more annoying than this.
PS. Dogmatic - when i read your post I imagined that you looked like the comic book guy.
posted by Spoon at 8:07 AM on February 20, 2002


I agree w/ Spoon. A post in which every letter (or word) is a link creates a problem for the reader because it's not apparent which links are the most important and best resources on the subject. As a result, the reader will either clicking through 10+ links to try to determine what the poster's point (even notice that the hyper-hyperlinked posts are also usually cryptically worded?), or will simply skip over the post. I usually go with the latter choice.

This is MetaFilter, right? I can google around and find a lot of links on a particular subject. Wee. But a good poster will narrow it down to an appropriate number (3 or 5?).
posted by jennak at 8:10 AM on February 20, 2002


Hey guys!

How dogmatic can I be before it becomes automatic?

--The doggie
posted by adampsyche at 8:22 AM on February 20, 2002


How long until the Metafilter Posting Guidelines resemble the Unabridged Tax Code?
posted by Optamystic at 8:31 AM on February 20, 2002


1 link is plenty, unless some outside info is needed to better understand the topic. any more outside of that is wasting the reader's time.
posted by mcsweetie at 8:33 AM on February 20, 2002


I can be much much more annoying than this.

Oh believe me, we know. You have a history of pushing the annoyance threshold way beyond its limits.
posted by dogmatic at 8:34 AM on February 20, 2002


Dogmatic A couple of badly judged posts does not a nnoying make.
At least i have always conducted myself in a manner befitting a gentleman.


posted by Spoon at 8:44 AM on February 20, 2002


Like eyeballkid says, I think tamim holds a record which will probably stand the test of time for most links in a single post. And you know, none of those were irritating.
posted by briank at 9:01 AM on February 20, 2002


I personally prefer three links or less; any more than that and the subject matter tends to become more work than I care for. I admit it, I'm lazy. Tamin's world link record did leave me in awe, though I only clicked thru on a large handful of links.
posted by ashbury at 9:24 AM on February 20, 2002


IMHO, it doesn't really matter how many links there are in the post (although clearly this depends on the length of the post), but two guidelines should be observed. Firstly, the link word(s) should indicate what the target's content will be - this sounds obvious but a lot of people tend to link any old word, resulting in random clicking.

Secondly, I agree with Jennak's comment that there shouldn't be several continuous links, since this makes it much harder to figure out how many links there are - but this shouldn't happen if the first guideline is observed.

I don't agree with those who put a limit on links in posts. My ideal post would have one 'main' link and perhaps several other links with supporting or other related information. There shouldn't be any links to what is essentially the same piece of information though (e.g. links to three news stories covering the same event at the same time). Certainly the post should have a main focus though.
posted by adrianhon at 9:44 AM on February 20, 2002


i have always conducted myself in a manner befitting a gentleman.

now i know you are a friend of my cuz. that is what he would say to people, minutes before releasing the kraken on their ass.
posted by Frasermoo at 10:34 AM on February 20, 2002


with some posts even one is too much!
posted by tilt at 2:58 PM on February 20, 2002


7... the answer is 7.
posted by geoff. at 4:34 PM on February 20, 2002


A one (lick), a two (lick), a three (crunch).

A three.
posted by rushmc at 4:57 PM on February 20, 2002


rushmc: the world will never know.
posted by bingo at 5:19 PM on February 20, 2002


Obviously, someone needs to write a script that will calculate the average number of links mathowie includes in his posts. That will be deemed the perfect number, which everyone must adhere to.
posted by Gary at 8:50 PM on February 20, 2002


Creating memepool-style front page posts with an annoyingly large number of links just got a lot easier.
posted by Shadowkeeper at 12:32 PM on February 21, 2002


Gee, thanks.
posted by kindall at 12:50 PM on February 21, 2002


Don't thank me, thank the moon's gravitational pull!
posted by Shadowkeeper at 1:19 PM on February 21, 2002


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