There Goes Another One January 23, 2010 8:50 PM   Subscribe

This post shouldn't have been deleted.

First, specifically about the post in question, I just spent a very enjoyable two hours watching the ten-part series of the movie linked to. That's 119 minutes more pleasure than I get from the majority of FPPs. That's not to say that most posts suck. They don't. I mean it shouldn't have been deleted.

The reason given by cortex is "I know the internet video thing is a fuzzy line, but I feel like "here's the entirety of an Oliver Stone movie from '86" without some really compelling explanation for why is pushing into sort of weird space."

Actually, it's not an Oliver Stone movie. He co-wrote the screenplay. I have no idea what the internet video thing is a fuzzy line means. And why should there be an explanation for why it's pushing into some sort of weird space? The explanation by cortex makes very little sense. I would like to suggest to cortex that, he being a very clever man (I'm being sincere), writing plainly might be a good idea. I am often bewildered by his comments. I suspect that oftentimes it's on purpose so as to allow for the largest number of contingencies.

What bothers me about the deletion (other than I would have missed it had not someone emailed me about the existence of the post) is that a valued member of this community disabled their account. vronsky has been here for quite some time and is responsible for hundreds of posts that many have found enjoyable. Of course not all of his FPPs appeal to everyone, but that's the nature of this site. There was nothing wrong with this post and it didn't violate any guidelines. It was a link to a movie posted on YT. I understand that some people have a problem with YT links in general, but it's my understanding that there is no consensus here regarding them.

I have been going back to the first posts ever published here. I am confused and I think many others are too. Maybe the owner of this site and the mods are as well. Some posts are simply bookmarking. Some editorialize. Some are heavily researched, others are a single link to something amusing. In my opinion, metafilter is all of these. The vision Matt had and has for this site is his own and he has entrusted a few people to make things run smoothly. But without people like vronsky--the thoughtful and prolific posters--metafilter is nothing.
posted by Mike Buechel to MetaFilter-Related at 8:50 PM (260 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

It seems pretty clear to me; posting an entire movie by a major studio on YouTube is a blatant copyright violation, with no extenuating circumstances. It will be deleted there soon. What about that are you missing?
posted by msalt at 8:59 PM on January 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


I don't think content decisions on MetaFilter should be made on the basis of guessing whether users will respond by taking their ball and going home.
posted by grouse at 9:00 PM on January 23, 2010 [7 favorites]


vronsky quit?

That really sucks.
posted by serazin at 9:00 PM on January 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


Oh fuck... vronsky?!

That sucks... he had a unique posting sensibility and I will miss it.
posted by Kattullus at 9:08 PM on January 23, 2010 [4 favorites]


This seems like a very difficult couple of months.
posted by The Whelk at 9:09 PM on January 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's a mystery to me why someone would quit MetaFilter over this. Of course, I'm not vronsky, so I don't understand. I mean, I've had my fair share of posts deleted.

It would be nice if, when people left, they were allowed to fill out (if they so wished) a "Reason for leaving" message that showed up on their profile page. That way there would be less of a mystery.

Vronsky will be missed.
posted by Deathalicious at 9:10 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


It was an iffy post. Just a movie? It's a good movie and not available on DVD. Yet there are many movies like this. Do we post them all? That seems more the province of a dedicated movie blog or something rather than mefi. It was an OK deletion. If I were the mod I can't say how I would have decided.

Now, if vronsky left over that alone that makes vronsky a drama queen. My guess is that there is more to this story. I have seen zero drama queen in vronsky up to this point, although I may not have been paying attention.
posted by caddis at 9:10 PM on January 23, 2010 [4 favorites]


This seems like a very difficult couple of months.

Oh no. I've spent too much time away. Who else is gone?
posted by Deathalicious at 9:10 PM on January 23, 2010


What bothers me about the deletion. . .is that a valued member of this community disabled their account.

Where do you get that vronsky disabled his account b/c of the deletion?
posted by mlis at 9:10 PM on January 23, 2010


I think the mods generally do a great job of walking the whole fuzzy copyright line. They really could be far more narrow about what is allowed and what isn't. Thankfully, they are pretty laid back folk. But, it seems to me that posts like the deleted one are removed, not so much because the mods have a personal love of specific copyright provisions, but because the content might get the pants sued off of Metafilter. So, we may not always like having some content removed from the blue, but we certainly also would like Matt to keep what are no doubt a lovely pair of pants.

It's a compromise, but I think it works out for the best (unless you want Matt naked).
posted by boubelium at 9:11 PM on January 23, 2010


I have been going back to the first posts ever published here. I am confused and I think many others are too.

Speak for yourself and provide links to contrast what you are talking about next time.
posted by mlis at 9:12 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


msalt: It seems pretty clear to me; posting an entire movie by a major studio on YouTube is a blatant copyright violation, with no extenuating circumstances. It will be deleted there soon. What about that are you missing?

About that, I'm not missing a thing. metafilter points to interesting information on the internet. What about that are you missing?
posted by Mike Buechel at 9:14 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


metafilter points to interesting information on the internet.

But this particular thing will almost certainly be removed from YouTube soon. Certainly most things like it are removed quickly. There's not much point in posting links that go dead before most users can see the content. This is completely independent of any concerns about copyright.
posted by jedicus at 9:20 PM on January 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


metafilter points to interesting information on the internet. What about that are you missing?

Why mile-wild generalities are justifications for anything in specific?
posted by Bookhouse at 9:22 PM on January 23, 2010


grar
posted by The Whelk at 9:25 PM on January 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


I have no idea what the internet video thing is a fuzzy line means.

It means that while it's an acknowledged fact that there's nothing like a firm prohibition on posting links to copyrighted stuff, there are general degrees of acceptability there ranging from "here is an obscure, unfindable cultural artifact of unknown copyright status" all the way up to "here's the entirety of a contemporary major motion picture". It means that we're stuck as moderators making judgement calls about what's okay and what's not on that big spectrum of situations, and that while I don't fault anyone for looking at something and thinking, "hey, I'll share this on metafilter" even if it's copyrighted material, there are going to be things like that that we decide are not, in fact, going to work as posts.

And why should there be an explanation for why it's pushing into some sort of weird space? The explanation by cortex makes very little sense.

You misread my deletion reason. I did not say that I needed an explanation for why it was pushing into some sort of weird space; I said that the lack of an explanation for why that not-obscure film was being posted in full left the post as something that was pushing into weird territory.

I would like to suggest to cortex that, he being a very clever man (I'm being sincere), writing plainly might be a good idea.

I make a tremendous effort on a regular basis to write plainly. Deletion reasons are not something we go into paragraphs on, they are intended as a general heads-up for the poster and possibly folks who have been reading the thread, if any, before its deletion; inquiries about the details have been and always will be welcome if someone wants a more expansive treatment of the subject.

I am often bewildered by his comments. I suspect that oftentimes it's on purpose so as to allow for the largest number of contingencies.

I have nothing polite to say in response to this.

I'm sorry vronsky left, and I'm hoping he comes back. I value his contributions here as well. We've had a couple people leave and come back lately, hopefully this will be another case of that. He left no note as to why he was leaving, but the timing suggests it was in some way a response to the deletion, and that sucks, but we're not going to refrain from deleting stuff on the off chance that it will cause someone to leave.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:27 PM on January 23, 2010 [31 favorites]


metafilter points to interesting information on the internet. What about that are you missing?

I could go find hundreds of great albums illegally streamed. I could find nice reproductions of paintings that are worth looking at. I could find you, if I looked, dozens of more cases of good movies being streamed. I could look up great books on the Gutenberg Project — and they're legal! Not one of those would make a good post in itself.

Just as an example, Dante's Inferno is a great work of literature. Is it helpful to make a post of where one could find it? No, not particularly, unless I had something to add about it. Cezanne was a pretty good painter. Should I link to one of his paintings so you can see it? Not if that's all I do.

The Treasure of the Sierra Madre — great movie, you really oughta see it. But it wouldn't make for a good post to just link to it on Google Video; there needs to be some context, some reason for bringing up the movie, something extra going on. Otherwise we could just sit and swap great, illegally-posted movies back and forth all day and night.
posted by argybarg at 9:33 PM on January 23, 2010 [9 favorites]


Just as an example, Dante's Inferno is a great work of literature. Is it helpful to make a post of where one could find it?

Dude, no one reads that shit any more. Just play it!
posted by graventy at 9:40 PM on January 23, 2010


The thing that got me about the post was that there was literally nothing to it apart from "Hey, here is a movie that is on the internet." There wasn't anything particularly notable about it, no anniversary or current news that was making it relevant. If we accept that straight-up posting movies in their entirety is OK, where do we draw the line? Such posts need some extra oomph to be postworthy than merely "Here's this old movie I liked."
posted by Rhaomi at 9:41 PM on January 23, 2010


vronsky!!!!!
posted by nola at 9:44 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


cortex: You misread my deletion reason. I did not say that I needed an explanation for why it was pushing into some sort of weird space; I said that the lack of an explanation for why that not-obscure film was being posted in full left the post as something that was pushing into weird territory.

Yes, I considered it both ways. Neither makes sense. If for the reason you stated, why would that be pushing into weird territory? It was simply a link to a movie. Why is that weird? Why would that need an explanation? It seems pretty obvious to me.

I have nothing polite to say in response to this.

LOL!!!
posted by Mike Buechel at 9:44 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


METAFILTER: I am confused and I think many others are too.
posted by philip-random at 9:51 PM on January 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


First, specifically about the post in question, I just spent a very enjoyable two hours watching the ten-part series of the movie linked to. That's 119 minutes more pleasure than I get from the majority of FPPs.

tl;dw
posted by hal_c_on at 9:52 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


Let the mods do their fucking job. I love vronsky and I hope he will be back but let the mods do their job.
posted by nola at 9:53 PM on January 23, 2010 [12 favorites]


It's a mystery to me why someone would quit MetaFilter over this.

Yeah, this part. It's not on DVD. vronsky never said so. We figured that part out. Long time history of MetaFilter not really condoning copyright violations. That's about it. Too bad long-time member is gone, long-time member maybe should have known?
posted by fixedgear at 9:55 PM on January 23, 2010


Yes, I considered it both ways. Neither makes sense. If for the reason you stated, why would that be pushing into weird territory? It was simply a link to a movie. Why is that weird? Why would that need an explanation? It seems pretty obvious to me.

The fact that it was, indeed, simply a link to the entirety of a contemporary motion picture without any sort of framing as to why that was being done, puts the post in weird, not-really-kosher-for-metafilter territory. It makes it much more likely to be deleted. That shouldn't be a controversial notion to anyone who has been paying a reasonable amount of attention to post deletions over time; you don't have to personally agree that it's problematic, but this is where we are and have been as moderators for quite some time.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:56 PM on January 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


Let the mods do their fucking job. I love vronsky and I hope he will be back but let the mods do their job.

How are the people posting in defense of their or vronsky's position NOT letting the mods do their jobs? MeTa is the place for this, and I think everyone here appreciates:

1. Dissenting viewpoints
2. The mods voicing their concerns and reasoning

So why don't you let MeTa do its job, instead of trying to set yourself up for hall monitor duty.
posted by hal_c_on at 10:02 PM on January 23, 2010 [4 favorites]


vronsky left? That sucks.
posted by Sailormom at 10:03 PM on January 23, 2010


I flagged the post when I saw it. I assumed it would be gone from YouTube in no time. Even if it stayed on YouTube I figured it would be gone from here just as soon. There was nothing whatsoever about the post that provided any context, reason, or point for linking the movie.

If that post was fine why not FPPs that are only single links to .torrent files. Links to .torrents are a fine thing in their own right but that doesn't make them a great post for here. I didn't notice that it was vronsky's post. If he has indeed left that's a shame. If he left due to that post's deletion it's kind of baffling also.
posted by Babblesort at 10:04 PM on January 23, 2010


Dude you don't get to call me a fucking hall monitor. What the hell.
posted by nola at 10:04 PM on January 23, 2010


FREE HUGS, srsly.
posted by The Whelk at 10:06 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


The guidelines then should state that linking to copyrighted material is not allowed, to avoid any confusion.
posted by Mike Buechel at 10:08 PM on January 23, 2010


Dude you don't get to call me a fucking hall monitor. What the hell.

You know what, you're right. Apologies. But I still stand by everything else that was said. I'm sorry...that was not cool.
posted by hal_c_on at 10:16 PM on January 23, 2010 [3 favorites]


Babblesort: If that post was fine why not FPPs that are only single links to .torrent files. Links to .torrents are a fine thing in their own right but that doesn't make them a great post for here.

I see a difference, but I get your point and agree.
posted by Mike Buechel at 10:18 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


sorry...that was not cool.

Thanks.
posted by nola at 10:19 PM on January 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


I like vronsky's posts too, so I did a quick check. There was another deleted post (a dupe) on the 20th, a greenlighted one, then something on 'Bad Movies' back on the 17th where there were lots of comments (132). But one in particular was noteworthy; getting pretty annoyed at the search function not returning previous posts on The Making of... and having wasted his time.

He's right about the search not working of course, and the linked Google search requires very much sifting. I can see how putting in a fair bit of work on a post only to have it turfed could be frustrating; moreso if you had sort of an unlucky streak going. Like they say; the thing about beating your head against a wall is that it feels good when you stop - maybe he just needs to feel good for a while. Hope he comes back for more of the dain bramage.
posted by Hardcore Poser at 10:25 PM on January 23, 2010


The guidelines then should state that linking to copyrighted material is not allowed, to avoid any confusion.

yeah but linking to copyrighted material is clearly allowed, if you have a compelling reason and you write a compelling post. here are the arguments against this post: framing, copyright, and the soon to be dead link. here are the arguments in favor of this post: good but obscure movie you might not have heard of/be able to find. sounds more like an opportunity for improvement than outrage.
posted by toodleydoodley at 10:27 PM on January 23, 2010


'The Making of...' being 'The Making of The Shining' documentary, which was the dupe post deleted on the 20th.
posted by Hardcore Poser at 10:28 PM on January 23, 2010


The guidelines then should state that linking to copyrighted material is not allowed, to avoid any confusion.

It is emphatically not the case that linking to copyrighted material is not allowed. The situation is that:

- there's a certain amount of context-specific consideration required when choosing to build a post around copyrighted material, and
- framing well in the cases where the copyright situation is kind of questionable (e.g. it's a lot of material, or the provenance of the copy being shared is questionable, or specific extenuating circumstances make linking the material potentially more objectionable than normal) is really important for making it clear why the stuff is being posted to metafilter, and
- in any case it's slightly dicey territory by default and the chances of such a post getting nixed are a bit higher at the baseline compared to a post that doesn't have that extra baggage.

It's an inherently tricky situation. If we were to institute a hardline No Linking To Copyrighted Material rule, it would be a nightmare. And vronsky's posting history would have a giant pile of new holes in it.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:29 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'm getting around to watch the film from the deleted post. It is pretty uneven and in parts downright terrible. And then there's some great dialogue like this... "The streetlight makes my pussy hair glow in the dark. Mmm... Cotton candy in the glow. I'll show you."

And part when Rosanna Arquette puked on Bridges' crotch was pretty funny though. And WTF with Andy Garcia with the pony tail?

Yeah, linking to a so-so movie that was illegally posted to YouTube doesn't make a good post. But then again, without the post -- and the deletion -- I'd never waste two hours of my life. And this may have been that straw that caused vronsky to skip town on us. So I'm torn.
posted by birdherder at 10:36 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


I have nothing polite to say in response to this.

LOL!!!
posted by Mike Buechel at 12:44 AM on January 24 [+] [!]


Dude, you're being a jerk.
posted by foxy_hedgehog at 10:38 PM on January 23, 2010 [20 favorites]


I'm fucking annoyed to no end by the 'taking my ball and going home' reaction when mods do something people don't like.

Anybody who would quit over something trivial like that was going to flameout or quit over something else anyway.
posted by empath at 10:41 PM on January 23, 2010 [7 favorites]


cortex: And vronsky's posting history would have a giant pile of new holes in it.

That comes off as a pretty strange, antagonistic comment.

OK, so lets say all of the arguments against the post have some merit (the copyright issue is off the table now). By the same criteria, a number of current FPPs should be deleted.
posted by Mike Buechel at 10:44 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


vronsky just left, he doesn't owe anyone a reason why.
posted by nola at 10:45 PM on January 23, 2010 [8 favorites]


Mike have a coke, go outside count the stars. I was friends with vronsky and I can tell you that comment was anything but antagonistic. Lurk more.
posted by nola at 10:47 PM on January 23, 2010 [4 favorites]


Vronsky left? WTF? Shame, shame, shame, all around. Metafilter is losing one of its best posters. Shame.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:50 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


By the same criteria, a number of current FPPs should be deleted.

I think the mods have a better idea of the sort of nuance required to make a good post than a guy who joined a couple months ago.

You're coming across as needlessly hostile here.
posted by chiababe at 10:52 PM on January 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


foxy_hedgehog: Dude, you're being a jerk.

LOL!!!
posted by Mike Buechel at 10:52 PM on January 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


Unto us a trool is born, unto us a pain in the ass is given.
posted by nola at 10:55 PM on January 23, 2010 [16 favorites]


nola: "ng but antagonistic. Lurk more."

If you take offense at someone calling you a hall monitor, and then tell another user to lurk moar, you probably should be the one to take a break.
posted by lazaruslong at 10:56 PM on January 23, 2010 [7 favorites]


Yeah I'm way out of line.
posted by nola at 10:57 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


That comes off as a pretty strange, antagonistic comment.

It's not intended to be antagonistic. It's just intended to convey why your suggested "no copyrighted stuff" amendment of the guidelines as they actually exist would be counterproductive to what seems like your actual position going into this thread.

I think we agree that vronsky has made a lot of good posts over the years, and it's plainly evident that a lot of those have involved linking to copyrighted media. He has generally done a pretty good job of framing those well, though not always and this is far from the first post he has had deleted. He's a quantity kind of guy, and seems to like to post sometimes on the strength of his enthusiasm in the moment; that's a fun way to post but it does mean getting some deleted, and so it goes.

If the guideline you were suggesting was actually in place—if our policy was in fact "no copyrighted material"—many of those posts he's made that have been let to stand would have by necessity been deleted. That's the point.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:58 PM on January 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


Give it a rest, nola. You are out of line.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:58 PM on January 23, 2010


getting pretty annoyed at the search function not returning previous posts on The Making of... and having wasted his time.

Well, that was a completely ridiculous assertion on his part. I noted that his post on The Shining was a double because I had made pretty much the exact same double post that he had because I hadn't found the original post through search.

Whining that it took him "a fucking half hour" to make his post is ridiculous, if only for the fact that his post was a link to Google video, Wikipedia, and a couple of jpegs. I've liked a lot of vronsky's posts in the past, but he's acting like a drama queen.
posted by dhammond at 11:03 PM on January 23, 2010


Blazecock, you need to get a mefite mail.

Also, guys? HUGS. C'mon, Saturday nmight, simmer down, imaginary internet people. Calm blue ocean y'all. Calm blue ocean.
posted by The Whelk at 11:04 PM on January 23, 2010 [4 favorites]



posted by The Whelk at 11:07 PM on January 23, 2010


I'm sorry if I suggested new members don't have a voice here. What I am saying is being willfully obtuse and ungenerous in reading cortext's responses is frankly pissing me off. I'm not a mod, I don't get paid to play nice and I don't like people not even trying to understand what is being talked about. I don't know why vronsky left but I don't like letting mike ride on his name in here.
posted by nola at 11:07 PM on January 23, 2010


The rules are not always consistent - I appreciate it tremendously when some back catalogue, lost in a pile of rubbish - film gets a link here.
posted by a non e mouse at 11:09 PM on January 23, 2010


Blazecock, you need to get a mefite mail.

Since this is the second time this has been mentioned, I'll explain why I turned it off: I received a number of abusive and harassing messages from a particular, popular user through Metafilter mail and through regular email and, given the state of opinion on this site, I realized I could either start a Metatalk thread to call out the person in question, or turn off that feature altogether. So I chose the latter.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:10 PM on January 23, 2010


Unlike some of the recent folks who left in a snit, I'll really miss vronsky and his/her posts.
posted by Rumple at 11:10 PM on January 23, 2010


Calm blue ocean
posted by Mike Buechel at 11:12 PM on January 23, 2010


vronsky take care. Good night.
posted by nola at 11:16 PM on January 23, 2010


BP, to be clear, you can block individual users without disabling the whole mefimail feature if you prefer.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:18 PM on January 23, 2010


Mike Buechel:

Most MetaFilter posts have some sort of framing content that explains why the link or links in question are particularly interesting or topical. This content is usually custom-written by the poster, or consists of selected excerpts from the link or related materials.

Most MetaFilter posts are also links to things that have intentionally been made available at that particular URL by the author or authors, making it safe to assume that the linked content is legal and will stick around for more than the amount of time it takes the MPAA's lawyers to get back from a Starbucks run.

Both of these characteristics help make up a "good" MetaFilter post. Neither is strictly necessary, but a post that fails both those criteria is extremely questionable, and well within the grey area that represents the moderators' deletion authority.

Vronsky's post was a bad post even if it was a link to a good movie, and vronsky's been around here long enough to know it. If he or she decided to die on that particular hill then the responsibility for that is not on the moderators at all. It's a shame, but nobody's fault but vronsky's.

On a more logistical note, you seem to be looking to this as some sort of violation of moderator precedent from previous posts. You should adjust your mindset. There are very few hard-and-fast-and-almost-no-exceptions rules here (such as "no self-linking in FPPs"), but not everything that adheres to the letter of the rules is or should be permissible. This is a moderated community and that means accepting that the moderators have some leeway beyond just being glorified spam filters.

You were right to come to MetaTalk, this is the place you would go to accuse them of being overly heavy-handed. But the post you're defending was Not A Good Post For MetaFilter by many of the (yes, vaguely-defined) community standards, so it's really not going to be a productive crusade for you to wage.
posted by Riki tiki at 11:18 PM on January 23, 2010 [9 favorites]


Find your power animal...MeTa

mine's a duck
posted by hellojed at 11:20 PM on January 23, 2010


Damn, I hate to see vronsky go. Hope he comes back.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 11:21 PM on January 23, 2010


I couldn't figure out why the deleted post in question was an FPP. It didn't make any sense in the context of MetaFilter
posted by KokuRyu at 11:22 PM on January 23, 2010


BP, to be clear, you can block individual users without disabling the whole mefimail feature if you prefer.

To be clear, I'm tired of dealing with abusive users who dredge up something I did four years ago while their comments sit undeleted. I'd prefer that their behavior gets dealt with appropriately, but since that isn't happening, I prefer to just turn the feature off and be done with it.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:23 PM on January 23, 2010


I hope vronsky comes back, too. It's Metafilter's loss.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:24 PM on January 23, 2010


KokuRyu - is that a bit of irony?
posted by a non e mouse at 11:36 PM on January 23, 2010


The thing about vronsky is, while I agree he brought a lot of interesting stuff here, my impression was that he did seem to make it a bit of a point of identity to challenge conventions, eschewing the necessity of context being one of his recurring virtues/flaws. Which is fine in my book, but if you're going to take that road you're going to have to accept it as an element of reality that you will fall prey to the mod magic eraser somewhat more than the average.

Especially when a person exits without comment, even if it seems clearly in the context of some particular editorial decision, my inclination is to think that there is probably more going on than whatever the momentary irritant encompasses. Being the sort of site it is Metafilter can easily become a time sink, or a context where one gets drawn into unwanted interpersonal drama, or a tap into overexposure to some particular crazy-making variety of information (like politics). As statements go closing your account without context is about as content-free as it gets. The merits or detriments of this particular deletion seem pretty clearly gray-area to me (as are the majority of deletions). One thing I'm dead certain of is that Metafilter would be a much worse site without the feature of dedicated, professional moderation. Vronsky left for his own reasons and chose not to share them. If he decides to come back, well, one of the benefits here is that such actions tend to occur with a minimum of snarky smack. I imagine most of us have had our "fuck this place" moments, whether we ultimately pulled the pin or not.
posted by nanojath at 11:43 PM on January 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


Mike Buechel: “I would like to suggest to cortex that, he being a very clever man (I'm being sincere), writing plainly might be a good idea. I am often bewildered by his comments. I suspect that oftentimes it's on purpose so as to allow for the largest number of contingencies.”

cortex: “I have nothing polite to say in response to this.”

Mike Buechel: “LOL!!!”

foxy_hedgehog: “Dude, you're being a jerk.”

Mike Buechel: “LOL!!!”

Okay, let's try again: you're being a jerk. cortex has done nothing to antagonize you, he's been more than accommodating and explanatory about why he's done what he's done, and he's gotten nothing but misdirected insults and indications that you're not reading any of the comments here. vronsky was an awesome poster here. He'll be well missed. I hardly think he needs a crap eulogy from a jerk who can't seem to do anything except come in here and LOL!!! all over the place. You're doing him shame right now, y'know?

We've had many, many, many, many discussions about copyright in metatalk before. And that's not even all we've had – we've been doing it at least since 2002. This is a loose guideline, but it's one that sometimes requires the mods to act, in the general best interest of the site; if you couldn't be bothered to actually look up what the mods' thoughts on this are, vronsky certainly did. cortex was, in his deletion reason, expressing what I believe is genuine puzzlement that vronsky would post that kind of thing and think it'd fly; it's not an evil or terrible thing to get a post deleted, so all of us are wondering why that would make vronsky, who has had at least five posts deleted at various times over the years, want to quit.

You're not really doing anything but being annoying now.
posted by koeselitz at 12:21 AM on January 24, 2010 [31 favorites]


Metafilter: You're not really doing anything but being annoying now.
posted by iamabot at 12:29 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


woulda picked "you're doing him shame right now" as a tagline myself, but then what do I know
posted by koeselitz at 12:33 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'm not much of a contributor here, but my first response to seeing someone dropping "LOL!!!" in what is apparently a non-ironic manner is to think "that guy should lurk more". Crappy, fighty callout? No problem, that's par for the course. But "LOL!!!"? That's just out of place. Todd Lokken.
posted by hades at 1:06 AM on January 24, 2010 [18 favorites]


MetaTalk: Woulda... but then what do I know
posted by carsonb at 1:09 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


"LOL!!!" is the last refuge of the scoundrel. Or the mating cry of someone who doesn't want to be taken seriously on the Interwebs. I forget which.
posted by scody at 1:09 AM on January 24, 2010 [20 favorites]


This Metatalk thread is giving me flashbacks to how much it sucked to run a forum.
posted by artemisia at 1:39 AM on January 24, 2010 [6 favorites]


I think we need a lot more single link FPPs to the whole chunks of copyrighted material.

It would be healthy for the site to encourage more democracy in postings, especially so that we users don't have to go to the trouble of framing anything, or adding any context.

It's also entirely clear to me that baiting mods is not just the decent thing to do, but the right thing to put them back in their place.

If anyone disagrees with me, I'm going to quit the site.

I also really like Mike's constructive contribution to the debate here.

/sarcasm
posted by MuffinMan at 1:42 AM on January 24, 2010


Actually, by my most recent count, "LOL!!!" and other internet-speak sarcasms are the seventeenth-to-last refuge of the scoundrel. Patriotism, Religion, and a number of the more common logical fallacies are still ahead of it (or behind, however you rate Last Refuges), although it has passed Executive Privilege and is close to overtaking the Godwin thing. And, speaking as one who is less of a fan of vronsky as some commenters in this thread (his contributions have been quite noticable if not always notable), I must note that "taking your ball and going home" is the eleventh.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:02 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter: Lurk More

Can I just say that I never get tired of pedantic "why did this [terrible] FPP get deleted?" threads. They're like an episode of "Law and Order" -- the same kind of characters say the same kinds of things, it's unintentionally formulaic, you know what's going to happen and yet they're reassuringly entertaining. (Then again, I'm jetlagged and also watching "Law and Order" in French, so it may just be me.)

Metatalk is the best part of the site some days -- unless you're a mod.
posted by Gucky at 2:21 AM on January 24, 2010 [25 favorites]


There's a new billboard ad for Renault cars here at the moment. The caption on the ad is 'OMG and LOL come equipped as standard'

It makes me fucking furious just looking at it.

I felt I had to unburden myself. Please, carry on.
posted by Jofus at 2:32 AM on January 24, 2010 [10 favorites]


I'll miss vronsky. He made good posts. I hope he comes back.
posted by hydatius at 2:43 AM on January 24, 2010


The caption on the ad is 'OMG and LOL come equipped as standard'

So do WTF and FAIL.
posted by daniel_charms at 2:53 AM on January 24, 2010 [3 favorites]


I hate lol as much as I hate the word 'sangers' for sandwiches and thanks muchly. Fucking lol.
posted by h00py at 3:46 AM on January 24, 2010


Can we trade Mike Buechel for vronsky?
posted by Joseph Gurl at 3:57 AM on January 24, 2010 [13 favorites]


There is a bunch of reasons I ain't posted yet after 7 years (except the first disastrous time). It's a difficult line to walk, it asks the poster to put forward a lot of faith and trust (in mods and community) that it'll be taken the way intended. To me, it's not clear what is entailed in a successful post and what is not, and it also strikes me as often an issue of timing (which I'm not good at - I have a job and other pursuits), a quirky sense of the fascinating (I think my sense of that does not entirely map well with the main subcultures here), and a strong stomach for putting that faith and trust forward and not always having it respected (i.e. no guarantee that it won't get flagged, won't get deleted, or perhaps worse, ignored).

I've had a few involvements with mods, usually after running afoul of other fighty/truculent/stabby commenters.

My sense of cortex is that he's capable of getting his back up and that (like me and a lot of other geeks I know) when he starts prioritizing thorough communication, he loses a little compassion and kindness (or maybe it's that he thinks that hey, these are MeFites, they should take my grey-area words well to my benefit, right? Right? and then we don't). At the same time, the dude holds it together while moderating thousands (millions?) of posts and comments and is consistently fair and ethical about his moderation. I think he does a good job.

My sense of Mike Buechel, though, is that he's being a cock (by which of course I mean a full of himself, strutting, arrogant bird with a big-ass comb and a loud voice). Dude. "LOL!!!"? Seriously? What? Are you a btard or something?

I think it's a shame when folks throw in the towel, for whatever reason. But I'm not simple enough to think that any particular interaction here does more than contribute to that departure. I think when folks leave or return, they are doing so by considering the whole experience, what they're getting out of it and whether it's worth the time and energy required to stick around.

I hope vronsky decides to come back too, but if he does, I hope it's for his own reasons and not just because us Jackasses want him to. I mean seriously, I like a lot of you guys, but in a crowd, we're not that predictable or consistent and I wouldn't trust the lot of you to be particularly (or perhaps from your perespective, unwarrantedly) gentle with me or anyone else.

I do find it ironic, though, that Mike Buechel, the poster, is chiming on the "we should be nicer to vronsky" approach while being a total cock (bird) to cortex and others. Nice way to dilute the point there, Mike.
posted by kalessin at 4:01 AM on January 24, 2010


Metafilter: Dude. "LOL!!!"? Seriously? What? Are you a btard or something?
posted by Joseph Gurl at 4:04 AM on January 24, 2010


The explanation by cortex makes very little sense.

I didn't think it was meant to- isn't it just like, well cortex' thing?
posted by mattoxic at 5:22 AM on January 24, 2010


Two points, if I may:

1) Yes the mods are sometimes inconsistent. I remember being very confused once about a post that was essentially just "Watch this, I think you'll like it." There was an embedded link that went to a 4 minute Polish folk song or something. Everyone loved it. The mods let it live. How that post was any better or less cryptic than vronsky's is beyond me. Way, way, way beyond me.

2) Who gives a shit? kalessin, have you seriously not posted anything to Metafilter in seven years because your first post didn't go well? Good Lord. Buck up, bud. It's okay, we've (almost) all had posts deleted or at least called out. There's no scorecard here where you get points for the longevity or quality of posts. Your posting history isn't going to win you an award. Just post something you find interesting and hopefully other people will enjoy it, too. If the mods nix it - then improve your post and try again the next day if that's what you want to do.

Personally I thought vronsky's post was underdeveloped and figured it was bound for deletion. The thing is - he disabled his account over that post? Yeah, you know what that was? That was testing the mods. He (she?) was probably upset about something else and decided to intentionally write an ambiguous post to see if the mods would let it stand. vronsky knew better than to write a post that was just: Hey here's a movie, check it out. So there's probably something more going on. "Oh mods, do you love me more than the others?" is the subtext I'm getting here, especially with the flameout/disabling that occurred immediately after.

Toughen up, peeps, it's just the interwebs. Have some fun.
posted by billysumday at 5:23 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


I've always appreciated vronsky's posts and hope he returns.
posted by vacapinta at 5:28 AM on January 24, 2010


Dancing Vaginas.
posted by fixedgear at 5:33 AM on January 24, 2010


Skittering cockroach-vaginas.
posted by Meatbomb at 5:53 AM on January 24, 2010


Wait, vronsky is a guy?! Oooooooooh, that explains so much now.

Yes the mods are sometimes inconsistent.

Strongly disagree, they're just not following hard and fast rules usually, which is a good thing.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:54 AM on January 24, 2010


Okay, fair enough, you strongly disagree with the statement that sometimes the mods are inconsistent. But I'm not sure how saying "they're just not following hard and fast rules, which is a good thing," is in any way disagreeing with me, since I also believe that.
posted by billysumday at 6:02 AM on January 24, 2010


Off point: Movies on youtube never get deleted. There are hundreds of newer and old classics posted in playlists some in very good quaulity. Just poke around when you have a free few weeks.......
posted by bjgeiger at 6:02 AM on January 24, 2010


Threads that are deleted from MetaFilter, MetaTalk or AskMetaFilter still show up at their old URLs with the reasons for deletion written in, but they no longer show up any other place on the site.

I assume that this means deleted posts do not show up in search results? (I've experimented with search a bit and have no been able to raise any.) Would an "include deleted posts" checkbox over-complicate search?
posted by kid ichorous at 6:02 AM on January 24, 2010


billysumday, thanks for the encouragement. It's part my own anxieties and partly my not wanting to waste mod time with silliness that could have been avoided.

For the record, I agree with Brandon Blatcher, though. I think that despite a lack of hard and fast rules, the mods are really consistent about their enforcement and judgement calls. To your point, though I don't often think that lack of hard and fast rules is necessarily a good thing

Still I've really grown to trust mods' judgement. Not only are they factoring in each individual post the poster, but they're also keeping in mind the ever-changing mood and composition of the individual users as well as the community as a whole.

I really think they do a good job. I say this having had moderator-like volunteer and paid jobs in smaller Internet-based communities. It's a difficult job to get right and I think our mods to a really good job of it.
posted by kalessin at 6:12 AM on January 24, 2010


You don't see the difference between a 4 minute Polish folk song and a major motion picture directed by and starring critically acclaimed members of the motion picture industry?
posted by Mick at 6:39 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


You don't see the difference between a 4 minute Polish folk song and a major motion picture directed by and starring critically acclaimed members of the motion picture industry?

I don't see why the post about the movie, with multiple links and more context, was deleted and why the cryptic post with a link that led to a 4 minute Polish folk song was not deleted.
posted by billysumday at 6:53 AM on January 24, 2010


Okay, fair enough, you strongly disagree with the statement that sometimes the mods are inconsistent. But I'm not sure how saying "they're just not following hard and fast rules, which is a good thing," is in any way disagreeing with me, since I also believe that.

The term inconsistent a negative attribute, as if the mods are illogical or incoherent. They aren't. They examine each situation fairly separately, using a general framework of trying to be fair to the individual while doing what's best for the site. So yeah, they're not following hard and fast rules, but I'd hardly call that inconsistent.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:54 AM on January 24, 2010 [4 favorites]


The thing that frustrates me the most about MeFi is not the behavior of the mods but people willfully and constantly misrepresenting what people write and then trying to start little arguments all the time. I guess I'm just an old fuddy duddy like Denby who's really starting to tire of aggressive snark (absurd snark I love). I know that that intentional misrepresentation stuff happens a lot more often to other users, and I've seen it drive quite a few of them away. I don't know who or what you're throwing punches at, Mick, but I don't think I'm it.
posted by billysumday at 7:01 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


So yeah, they're not following hard and fast rules, but I'd hardly call that inconsistent.

Exactly--they are not, to use a legal standard, arbitrary and capricious. Although I wish I could understand why they haven't deleted that "Photos of famous people" post.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 7:01 AM on January 24, 2010


Whoops, that first line should have been in italics.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 7:02 AM on January 24, 2010


I could swear this isn't the first time that Vronsky has disabled his account, and I hope he comes back.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 7:06 AM on January 24, 2010


From the Warez meta a while back it seems that it's a very popular line of argument. I am not convinced anyone, even the pro-piracy folks, believes it to be true.
posted by Artw at 7:06 AM on January 24, 2010


Brandon:

This is what I said: "Yes the mods are sometimes inconsistent." I didn't say that they were inconsistent or that they are typically inconsistent. I said that they were sometimes inconsistent. I would think that even the mods would agree with that assessment - all things considered, it's pretty broad and you have to admit, to disagree with the claim that the mods are sometimes inconsistent means to argue that the mods have never been inconsistent. The mods are usually consistent - sometimes they are inconsistent. They're people, it happens.

Now, that's just my opinion. You have your opinion. What I don't understand is your argument. I said that the mods were sometimes inconsistent. You replied "Strongly disagree, they're just not following hard and fast rules usually, which is a good thing." I don't see how the second part of your sentence correlates to the first part. It seems to me if you wanted to disprove the notion that the mods are sometimes inconsistent, you would argue by showing me or telling me that they are actually very consistent. Instead you bring up something that, to my ears at least, supports my argument - the mods don't follow hard and fast rules. That would lead me to believe that they will at times be inconsistent. Then you follow by making a judgment of the situation, calling it "good." And I agree with that assessment, I think their application of rules is a good thing, but I don't see how that relates to consistency or inconsistency.

I think that the mods are humans, they try their best, they do a very good job, and that their system of evolving standards is a very good one. I also think that at times they can be inconsistent in how they apply those standards.
posted by billysumday at 7:10 AM on January 24, 2010


Metafilter: Dude you don't get to call me a fucking hall monitor. What the hell.
posted by fire&wings at 7:16 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


Although I wish I could understand why they haven't deleted that "Photos of famous people" post.

It's Sunday morning and it takes a little longer.
posted by gman at 7:17 AM on January 24, 2010


Yup, no sooner said than done.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 7:19 AM on January 24, 2010


The thing that got me about the post was that there was literally nothing to it apart from "Hey, here is a movie that is on the internet."

This is sort of the thing, to me. The difference between that and a weird Polish folk song is that the weird Polish folk song was unlikely to have been seen by MeFi folk and the random movie was ... a movie anyone could have seen in the threater.

I also hope vronsky comes back, but if he decides to leave after having one post deleted -- and he's a very active member of the site generally -- that's pretty much between him and his own personal barometer and not really something we could have prepared for.

Longtime users leave and come back sometimes, and sometimes they leave and don't come back. I'm hoping vronsky comes back, but not deleting iffy posts just because a user might leave.... that puts us in a totally not-going-there position.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:27 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Well this absolutely sucks. I loved vronsky. He was like my stoner uncle with his obtuse but fascinating sense of humor. I really hope he comes back.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 7:31 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


The difference between that and a weird Polish folk song is that the weird Polish folk song was unlikely to have been seen by MeFi folk and the random movie was ... a movie anyone could have seen in the threater.

Okay, I get that. But, again, my objection was not to the material but the context included in the post. Isn't it up to the poster to provide at least some context? The objection I had to that post specifically was the phrasing - "Check this out I think you'll like it." I've seen many other posts that link to interest subject matter deleted with the reason being "this is interesting but you didn't provide any context here."
posted by billysumday at 7:32 AM on January 24, 2010


But without people like vronsky--the thoughtful and prolific posters--metafilter is nothing.

Yes, but we're not talking about all the people of vronky's calibre leaving. We're talking about just vronksy leaving.

If there was a mass exodus of good people due to a general unhappiness with the way the site was being managed, yes, that would be a problem. But on a site with the kind of large, varied membership we have, a trickle of good people leaving may be a shame, but it is also inevitable and unproblematic. We have new members joining every day who will contribute just as much in their own unique ways. To be honest, at this point even Mathowie could probably quit and the site would carry on in much the same way it always has done. Of course I know that there are stellar members here while others are just average or maybe don't bring a lot to the table at all, and I appreciate the outstanding contributions made by the best MeFites, but I don't filter the 'Filter for their work, and when they leave it might not even register on my radar screen. There is no shortage of good stuff posted here every day, and I'm too busy enjoying it to notice that this or that person has left.

And I agree with this deletion. Posts are supposed to be about stuff that is new to most members. One can safely assume that most MeFites won't have heard a Polish folk song, but many would know about that movie and almost all of us would know who Oliver Stone, Jeff bridges and Rosanna Arquette are, and anyone interested in their work can and will check out their pages on IMDB.
posted by orange swan at 7:35 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


gotcha Blazecock.
posted by The Whelk at 7:37 AM on January 24, 2010


Speaking for myself, I love mystery links. I don't really need context. That's why I'll never understand the complaints about context-free SLYT posts, for example. All you need to do is click the link to see what it's about.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 7:37 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Come back vronsky.
posted by applemeat at 7:37 AM on January 24, 2010


I'm not really sure that this should be on the site either, certainly it could do without the loony op-Ed bit.
posted by Artw at 7:40 AM on January 24, 2010


If we want to be angry about something, how about finding out your anthology project is pretty much dead in the water? That sucks on a Sunday.
posted by The Whelk at 7:42 AM on January 24, 2010


I'd prefer that their behavior gets dealt with appropriately, but since that isn't happening, I prefer to just turn the feature off and be done with it.

That's a shame. I've resolved plenty of conflicts via MeMail. I shudder to think what kind of ugly in-thread bickering what have resulted without MeMail. No one needs to see user-on-user arguments in a thread, when the whole thing could be dealt with privately. And if it gets out of hand, I see nothing wrong with calling someone out and/or reporting them for MeMail abuse.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 7:43 AM on January 24, 2010 [5 favorites]


Isn't it up to the poster to provide at least some context?

Yep. But some don't and the posts are okay [I'm thinking of tellurian's post from the other day where a lot of people were like "why did you link to this?" but a lot of people seemed to find it interesting and by the time I saw it in the flag queue there was some discussion going]. I guess there's sort of a pluses and minuses sort of thing going on. To oversimplify for a sec....

- insta delete: self-link or giant weird mess
- criteria for all posts: interesting, likely not seen by MeFites, starts good discussion
- pluses: people have things to talk about, seems to fit MeFi interest areas, OP added a lot of context, really good links
- minuses: copyvio possibility, GRAR or touchy topics, Pepsi Blue, axe-grindy approach, contextless or mystery meat post, linking to Same Old Shit
- community context: loved or hated by the community overall?
- poster: new? seasoned? history on the site?

So when we look at something with a medium amount of flags and a few favorites [i.e. no overwhelming keep/delete mandate] we sort of go down the list and think about that sort of thing. As I'm sure you're all aware, it's definitely not math, but it's also definitely not random or just how we're feeling that day.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:43 AM on January 24, 2010 [7 favorites]


And if I may offer the hive mind a discussion question without making MeFi a personal soapbox...

You may not.
posted by fixedgear at 7:45 AM on January 24, 2010


There was an embedded link that went to a 4 minute Polish folk song or something. Everyone loved it. The mods let it live. How that post was any better or less cryptic than vronsky's is beyond me. Way, way, way beyond me.

No two posts are ever identical (except when they are, in which case they get deleted as doubles, but I digress), and a lot of what we end up hashing out in making deletion decisions (and discussing them here) is where two different things fall in relation to one another: comparing and contrasting, basically.

I don't remember the polish folk song thing off hand, but based just on the description some of the points of reference for distinguishing those two things include: apparent novelty (polish folks song vs. major American film release), accessibility (settling into 4 minutes without much framing: reasonable time investment; two hours without any framing: not so much), raw distance from lay-sense of Fair Use (a short obscure thing vs. the full length product of an obnoxiously litigious major media system).

That's not intended to be an exhaustive list nor a formal one; we don't have any sort of literal checklist we go down when looking at posts. But those are a few things that jump out at me as being different between the two things even if they were otherwise similar in form as "posts linking without much explanation to a piece of video media likely posted in violation of existing copyright".

We look at posts and we have to suss out what we can of the situation, and look in part at how the community seems to feel about it via flags and in-thread commentary and private communication and make a call. The only alternative to that fuzzy system is to make a hardline rule, and I don't think either of "everything is permitted" or "nothing is permitted" would serve this community well at all.

I'll never make a claim to perfect consistency. I think, see above, that the only way to achieve it would be to ruin the site for the sake of it. We're applying our best judgement, alone or collectively depending on the circumstances, to very not-black-and-white stuff, and I've said before that I look at these things in terms of probability as much as anything: some things will make a post more or less likely to be deleted, and those things multiply, and when it comes down to a decision to keep or not we're dealing more with a weighted coinflip than some deterministic application of a rigid ruleset.

On preview, see Jessamyn's reference to the idea of pluses and minuses as another formlation of that same idea.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:51 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


I don't understand why the history of the poster matters. In fact, I suspect that the perception that the posts of different users are treated differently was exactly what drove vronsky off. He was a long-time poster here and perhaps he perceived some slight awhile ago. And perhaps he was testing to see if his borderline post would be accepted. It wasn't (and I agree with the deletion, btw), but instead of accepting it as a judgment on the quality of the construction of his post, he took is as a personal judgment. I think that could be avoided.

For instance: New user posts link to folk song with text "Check this out, you'll like it." Post is deleted because we're not "familiar" with the new user and the mods tell that user to provide a little context in their next post - perhaps they are worried that the new user will continue to make posts with little or no context.

On the other hand, you have a seasoned user post the exact same post and it stands, because that person is known for posting good links. On a conceptual level, I understand it. Someone sees that a certain user posts something, they know that person posts interesting links, they click it, it's good, everyone's happy.

The only problem is that the posts were exactly the same. It shouldn't matter who posted it, it should only matter what the post is. Bringing user history into the equation is a recipe for feelings getting hurt and head-scratching from other users.

I understand that at this point I'm just going on and on trying to defend a previous statement or to clarify my point of view, so I'll step out now. But thank you for your replies, jessamyn, I appreciate the time you took to answer me.
posted by billysumday at 7:56 AM on January 24, 2010


Oh, and thanks, cortex. Like I said, I understand where you guys are coming from, I think you all do a great job, but I also understand where a lot of the head-scratching comes in.
posted by billysumday at 7:59 AM on January 24, 2010


If having your marginal FPP deleted is the reason you take your toys and go home, good f'ing riddance no matter who you are. I'll dissent from vronsky's eulogization here. Of course he could have other reasons, but if he left in a snit, that's his problem.

Gucky nails it. Law and Order indeed. I'll give you a hint: it's the mother's fault. Again.

"Why did my/this thread get deleted?" MeTas are just ever so tiresome.

I think something along these lines should be posted to the wiki under the heading "Why Was My Fucking Post Fucking Deleted?"

Because it's Matt's fucking site and cortex and jess and vaca are the fucking moderators. Maybe they don't want to be cease-and-desisted or DCMA'd or sued into oblivion. Or maybe they just hate your taste in whatever it was you posted. Or don't want to spend the weekend moderating a shitstorm. If this fucking bothers you, HERE is a link to delete your account and HERE is a link to get your own fucking blog. Be aware that the deletion reason stated in the thread may be sarcastic, humorous, or otherwise not meant to be legally binding. Please see Puke & Cry's "Deleted Thread" blog [LINK] if you'd like to see your words immortalized on the internets.
posted by fourcheesemac at 8:00 AM on January 24, 2010 [11 favorites]


That's DMCA'd into oblivion. I'm slydexic.
posted by fourcheesemac at 8:01 AM on January 24, 2010


For some reason I read that in Denis Leary's voice, which only made it worse.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 8:03 AM on January 24, 2010 [5 favorites]


It seems to me if you wanted to disprove the notion that the mods are sometimes inconsistent, you would argue by showing me or telling me that they are actually very consistent.

So very not interested in arguing or battling it out in another round of Internet Verbal Jousting.

But anyway: You said "sometimes". I would have used "rarely". I had actually thought to write, "of course the mods are human and make mistakes, fuck up etc", but I did and do strongly feel that they fuck up so rarely, it just wasn't worth mentioning 'cause duh, everyone knows they're human.

Hope this helps clarify things.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:04 AM on January 24, 2010


So very not interested in arguing or battling it out in another round of Internet Verbal Jousting. But anyway: You said "sometimes". I would have used "rarely".

Sometimes this site really makes me wonder if I'm insane.
posted by billysumday at 8:09 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


I actually had some kid say "OMG," out loud to me the other day. The world has gone mad.

(also, I think I just involuntarily snored while I was awake. I dunno if thats even possible.

Also, I liked vronsky and hope he comes back.
posted by jonmc at 8:10 AM on January 24, 2010


also, I think I just involuntarily snored while I was awake. I dunno if thats even possible.

Snoring is the product in part of lax tissue at the back end of the soft palate; when you sleep the muscles involved tend to be relaxed, which (and posture plays a part here too) leads to an obstruction of the airway.

When you're awake, that tissue tends not to be so relaxed, especially when you're engaged in some sort of task like speech or eating. But it's totally possible to let that area chill out, and then, bam: WAKING SNORE. It's a bigger problem for some folks than others, but it can happen to just about anyone.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:20 AM on January 24, 2010 [5 favorites]


I appreciate the direction this thread is taking.
posted by The Whelk at 8:24 AM on January 24, 2010


*snores*
posted by jonmc at 8:25 AM on January 24, 2010


It shouldn't matter who posted it, it should only matter what the post is.

I don't think this is realistic standard. Relationships with people matter, no matter the situation, be it here on Metafilter or elsewhere.

For example: If you made a shitty post to the blue filled with juvenile frat boy humor that mocked minorities and women, the mods would delete and then contact you and probably say something like "Hey what the hell, man, what's going on, why you'd do that?" because they know that you are not that type of poster and would want to get the full story before they decided to give a time out or whatever

If someone who had only been here a week did the exact same post, I bet they'd strike a different tone, because they don't know the poster, they wouldn't have a history with them.

Relationships and posting history matters. It should not be the only criteria obviously and I'm pretty sure it isn't with the mods, but to argue that who makes a post shouldn't matter is an unrealistic notion for a community weblog.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:26 AM on January 24, 2010 [5 favorites]


When you're awake, that tissue tends not to be so relaxed, especially when you're engaged in some sort of task like speech or eating. But it's totally possible to let that area chill out, and then, bam: WAKING SNORE. It's a bigger problem for some folks than others, but it can happen to just about anyone.

You hear that people? Forget copyright infringement, WAKING SNORING CAN HAPPEN TO ANYONE.
posted by Atreides at 8:27 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Sometimes this site really makes me wonder if I'm insane.

*Fist pump*
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:28 AM on January 24, 2010 [4 favorites]


Sometimes this site makes me wonder if you're all insane.

*complicated hand shake*
posted by The Whelk at 8:29 AM on January 24, 2010 [5 favorites]


Mike Buechel writes "The guidelines then should state that linking to copyrighted material is not allowed, to avoid any confusion."

Uh, 99.9+% of the front page links are to copyrighted material. Only stuff either so old or explicitly placed in the public domain isn't.
posted by Mitheral at 8:30 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


This seems like a very difficult couple of months.

I've said this a few times already, but it really reminds me of MeFi circa 2007, just with even less acrimony, if you can believe it.

Vronsky has left and returned before; hopefully he will return again, as he generally posts interesting stuff and has somewhat mellowed since back in th' day. That said, this was a poor post whose deletion did not warrant leaving - that's totally unsubstantiated anyway, and like said above, t'ain't none of our business if someone chooses to leave without reason.

A lot of FPPs involve copyrighted material in one form or another, the thing is to find something either sort of obscure or provide enough supplementary material (Not filler!). There's an awesome FPP about Hal Ashby's career waiting to be posted. This was the equivalent of posting to a .torrent file because the material isn't available on Region 1 DVDs (Cue someone who has made such an FPP that escaped the hook).
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 8:32 AM on January 24, 2010


FYI, it's the pelvic thrust.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:34 AM on January 24, 2010 [4 favorites]


jonmc: I actually had some kid say "OMG," out loud to me the other day. The world has gone mad.

I sometimes say "omg" out loud. As in a single syllable "omg," not oh emm gee. I also sometimes say "lol" and "rofl" and even "omgzomg" and, in unguarded moments, afaik [ah-fay-ick] but no one ever understands afaik.

I may have spent too much of my life on the internet
posted by Kattullus at 8:36 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Kattullus: this kid said O..M..G. She looked about sixteen, and as I've decided to hate all young people anyway, I didn't feel so bad.
posted by jonmc at 8:37 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


*takes a step to the right*
posted by The Whelk at 8:38 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Annoying youngster here. What's wrong with OMG? It's got a nice ring to it, sounds vaguely cutesy, and is somewhat less formal than "ohmigawd", but in a good way. As far as slang goes, I'll take OMG and LOL to gnarly and booya.
posted by Rory Marinich at 8:43 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Cause it sounds funny, oooommmmmggggg. Blarg. ZOMG at least has that nice "zuuh!" sound to it.

yes, I use Blarg. Meh. Fed. And "Nerds!" in conversation
posted by The Whelk at 8:44 AM on January 24, 2010


My sister (at nineteen, 21 years younger than I; Mom got a hell of a case of empty nest when my brother and I moved out) regularly says 'bee tee dubs,' which I am to understand is the spoken form of BTW. She has also said 'oh em gee' and 'dubya tee eff.'

I suppose I will have reached the 'get the hell off my lawn' point when I hear a child say 'bee tee dubs' having no idea they are pronouncing an acronym for 'by the way.'
posted by Pragmatica at 8:45 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's not slang, it's abbreviations. Talk like a human, not a freaking cellphone.
posted by jonmc at 8:46 AM on January 24, 2010


"O.K" is an abbreviation. There was a huge fad for them at the turn of the last century.

Nerds!
posted by The Whelk at 8:48 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's not slang, it's abbreviations. Talk like a human, not a freaking cellphone.

Huh. Whenever I listen to my cellphone, it sounds just like a human - in fact, depending on who's the other line, it sounds just like that person.

Zing!
posted by billysumday at 8:49 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Burn The Witch? You never know, particularly in certain parts of rural East Anglia.
posted by Abiezer at 8:53 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


*Enters like the newb he is*
*Watches complicated hand shake*
*Muffs it*
*Grins awkwardly*
*Emulates mod's pelvic thrust*
*Blushes*
*Leaves walking backwards*
posted by Hardcore Poser at 8:55 AM on January 24, 2010 [3 favorites]


I'll miss vronsky. He made good posts. I hope he comes back.

fourcheesemac beat me too it. I can't think of one person that has flamed out here that I wasn't happy to see go by the time they were done flaming. Of course in this case vronsky didn't exactly flame out, but all the same, I could care less. There are plenty of interesting people left posting plenty of interesting things. If he no longer wants to be one of them, that's fine by me.
posted by cjorgensen at 8:57 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Abbreviations are a form of slang. Just like how "moving picture" got abbreviated to "movie", which, when you think for a second about the word, sounds like the most immature descriptor of any great art form.
posted by Rory Marinich at 8:57 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


You forgot Poland!
posted by found missing at 9:01 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Awww, vronsky, come on back. Your fans are legion and clamoring for your return. Count me among the fans. This ain't worth leaving over.

On the other hand, I respect and understand the need to take a break every now & again, so with any luck, that is all this is.
posted by madamjujujive at 9:01 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Rory, wassa matter you don't like flicks?
posted by The Whelk at 9:03 AM on January 24, 2010


*puts his hands on his hips*
posted by Gorgik at 9:10 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: Look, I'm cold, I'm wet, and I'm just plain scared!
posted by The Whelk at 9:14 AM on January 24, 2010 [5 favorites]


"vronsky quit?"

Don't worry, it's just a feint.
posted by Eideteker at 9:26 AM on January 24, 2010 [11 favorites]


Vronsky Beat.
posted by box at 9:37 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


billysumday, are you referring to this post by flapjax at midnite? Because he actually does include quite a bit of context on the inside. But, never mind that. I'm only linking it because I'm one of the people who watched it and indeed loved it. If anyone missed it first time around, check it out. Worth your time.

Also, I, too, will miss vronsky.
posted by barrett caulk at 9:41 AM on January 24, 2010


I would just like to point out that Jeff Bridges is a talented photographer. He's no Dennis Hopper or Viggo Mortensen, but...
posted by Sys Rq at 9:49 AM on January 24, 2010


I see Jessamyn's last deletion (of that stupid Dutch Clinton/Bush prepare for Haiti speech post) was headed "Ah, this is really not that great."

Perfect. That should be the reason for every deletion.
posted by fourcheesemac at 9:50 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


I would just like to point out that vronsky didn't leave "in a snit", act like a "drama queen" or flame out like some are suggesting in this thread. He disabled his account without comment. That's about as far from flaming out as you can get.
posted by Sailormom at 9:51 AM on January 24, 2010 [4 favorites]


That's why I'll never understand the complaints about context-free SLYT posts, for example. All you need to do is click the link to see what it's about.

Worth adding. Sometimes the very fact that the FPP is context-free (or context-limited) makes it more effective. Case in point (I hope), my Trash Humpers post from a few month's back. At first, I almost posted it with links to wikipedia, imdb etc, plus some discussion of Harmony Korine's reputation for being a little unstable if not batshitinsane. But in the end, I decided the post worked best as a SLYT, with some press-release text thrown in from the Youtube page.

In the ensuing discussion, people ended up making all the links I'd originally intended to (plus a few I hadn't), and, among mostly favorable, good-natured comments, it was called out for being a lousy post:

without some supporting links giving me some context as to how or why it's brilliant, misunderstood, cutting-edge, edgy or controversial, it's just like every other 47 second YouTube of some guys acting goofy for their friends.

And so on.
posted by philip-random at 9:51 AM on January 24, 2010


Some say vronsky left in fire,
Some say in ice.
posted by found missing at 9:55 AM on January 24, 2010 [5 favorites]

If that post was fine why not FPPs that are only single links to .torrent files. Links to .torrents are a fine thing in their own right but that doesn't make them a great post for here.
I see a difference, but I get your point and agree.
I'm curious: What difference do you see?
posted by Flunkie at 10:02 AM on January 24, 2010


We're doing the time warp here.
posted by rtha at 10:05 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Again!
posted by The Whelk at 10:05 AM on January 24, 2010 [4 favorites]


I'm curious: What difference do you see?

To name but a few: Torrents require extra software, are not immediately viewable, have the potential to contain a whole lot of god-knows-what, and may be blocked by users' ISPs.
posted by Sys Rq at 10:12 AM on January 24, 2010


See, Sys Rq came back! And I am glad for that.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 10:15 AM on January 24, 2010 [3 favorites]


If vronsky was really so great he would have emailed languagehat and then flamed out in MetaTalk.
posted by OmieWise at 10:16 AM on January 24, 2010 [4 favorites]


(I do enjoy his posts and hope he decides to post again.)
posted by OmieWise at 10:16 AM on January 24, 2010


It's almost a shame vronsky didn't flame out - it would have been an AWESOME post! I, too, hope he returns.
posted by _paegan_ at 10:16 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


To name but a few: Torrents require extra software, are not immediately viewable, have the potential to contain a whole lot of god-knows-what, and may be blocked by users' ISPs.

The most important difference: If you take someone elses comment and put it on a site with your own advertising then you are thief and an asshole, but if you put up a torrent of it on a site with your own advertising you are a copyfighting hero!
posted by Artw at 10:19 AM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


You know, in the 5+ years I've been hanging out here, there have been many moderation decisions that would have been made differently if I were in charge. But not once have they done anything to shake my confidence that every call they've made has been inconsistent or does anything but raises the quality of the site. Not once. I think that's pretty remarkable.

Not only that, but they've never been hesitant to politely explain their rationale in the process. I only mention this (and forgive me if I am projecting too much) because user 97078 up there is coming across as a bit argumentative given the level of esteem in which the moderators are generally held around here.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 10:30 AM on January 24, 2010 [3 favorites]


I stopped watching that movie not long after the pussy hair glowing in the street light line. What in the world was the screenwriter intending there? Something erotic? Amusing? The desperation of a hooker at the end of her rope? It's just odd. Then I realized it was most likely the product of a cocaine fueled all-nighter. Anyway, it was kind of an enormously terrible movie but I hope vronsky isn't feeling too ruffled about anything here.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:52 AM on January 24, 2010


Ah box, that should have linked to "Don't Leave me this Way"
posted by Elmore at 10:53 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


I like vronksy's posts. I hope he comes back.

Noting that this movie isn't available on legit DVD, that it's essentially out of print, I wouldn't have deleted the post (though it sure woulda helped if he had mentioned that in the text). But I can accept that opinions differ. I don't think that the idea that YouTube is going to delete it (if they are) is a valid criticism. We're not YouTube, and there are plenty of links to stuff that's deleted later—nigh every newsfilter post.

Hope that he's just recharging elsewhere on the internet and that he comes back with another run of great posts.
posted by klangklangston at 11:02 AM on January 24, 2010


but all the same, I could care less

You cared enough to comment, anyway. People disabling their accounts here sucks. Most of the disablings that have happened in the last few weeks have been net negatives for the site. Posting a generic "good riddance" only makes you seem like a jerk.
posted by mediareport at 11:13 AM on January 24, 2010 [4 favorites]


I see Jessamyn's last deletion (of that stupid Dutch Clinton/Bush prepare for Haiti speech post) was headed "Ah, this is really not that great."

Perfect. That should be the reason for every deletion.
posted by fourcheesemac


I think the catch-all deletion reason should be "We are dissatisfied with the number of kittens in this package."
posted by marxchivist at 11:23 AM on January 24, 2010 [3 favorites]


What's wrong with OMG?

The reason I mentioned it is that I felt like my cultural touchstone had been hijacked by people younger than me, to sell something of no interest to me to people dumber than me.

That's not what I said when I saw it though. What I said was 'Fuck, man, look at this shit. That's like...fuck, man."
posted by Jofus at 11:34 AM on January 24, 2010


philip-random writes "Worth adding. Sometimes the very fact that the FPP is context-free (or context-limited) makes it more effective. Case in point (I hope), my Trash Humpers post from a few month's back. "

FYI: I know I'm not the only one who didn't see all the effectiveness. Description free mystery meat automatically removes a chunk of your audience.
posted by Mitheral at 12:17 PM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


An angry, befuddled, old chunk.
posted by koeselitz at 12:35 PM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


‘I can't believe we came to this ridiculous art gallery, honey. Yes, yes, I saw all those paintings, but there's not an artist's statement anywhere! How the hell am I supposed to know what it means? And who in god's name is 'doo-sham' anyway?’
posted by koeselitz at 12:40 PM on January 24, 2010


A doo-sham is used to cover a toilet fountain when not in use.
posted by carsonb at 12:43 PM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


Uh, that's Dutch Ump, philistine.
posted by scody at 12:50 PM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


You could use one of those too, I guess, but you might get called out.
posted by carsonb at 12:50 PM on January 24, 2010


We've had a couple people leave and come back lately....

Who? Or would that violate their privacy?
posted by zarq at 12:54 PM on January 24, 2010


"O.K" is an abbreviation.

For what? Oklahoma? Seems like it would be a bit, uh, rococo to say "Oklahoma!" every time I agree with some one.
posted by msalt at 12:54 PM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


Every time somebody mentions Martin Van Buren, I say 'Old Kinderhook!' Well, I mean, I would.
posted by box at 12:56 PM on January 24, 2010 [9 favorites]


Oh, duh. I missed Sys Rq. Hi Sys Rq! *waves* Welcome back! You've been missed!
posted by zarq at 12:59 PM on January 24, 2010


Oll kerreck!
posted by klangklangston at 1:08 PM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


A handheld spray bidet is a much safer alternative--confused Americans might unwittingly do their business in your traditional sit-down bidet.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:10 PM on January 24, 2010


> You cared enough to comment, anyway. People disabling their accounts here sucks. Most of the disablings that have happened in the last few weeks have been net negatives for the site. Posting a generic "good riddance" only makes you seem like a jerk.

I didn't comment because I cared vronsky left, I commented because of all the wailing and gnashing of teeth over the departure. No one knows for sure why he's decided to leave, and the conjecture that it was over having a post deleted is only that...conjecture. I don't know why he left, and again, don't care.

If people are correct and he left over having a post deleted, then I find this to be incredibly petulant, and agree wholeheartedly with fourcheesemac, "good f'ing riddance no matter who you are." If that makes me a jerk, so be it.
posted by cjorgensen at 1:11 PM on January 24, 2010 [3 favorites]


I don't know why he left, and again, don't care.

Exactly; the last time he left was due to life-related considerations, no one really has any reason to think this isn't the case again.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 1:39 PM on January 24, 2010


Look,

I had a thread of mine closed yesterday (see yesterday's metatalk post on Originalism). I was trying not to derail a thread, but ended up creating something that should have been an FPP. Stuff happens: I haven't been around as long as Vronsky, but I've been around long enough to know what should and shouldn't be posted on Meta/the blue/the green.

I think the inherent problem, as Cortex pointed out, is that there are no bright-line rules on which posts belong where: it's more of a flexible standard than a rule. And I appreciate the Mods using their 'guiding force' to keep discussion moving in the appropriate channels, even if it comes at the expense of my own post. Metafilter is really a place like no other I've seen on the internet: the level, variety, and force of discussion engaged in by so many witty and intelligent commentators is absolutely mindblowing. If it takes some posts being deleted as editorial decisions by the moderators, then so be it.

So I really fail to see what the big deal is. Some posts aren't up to snuff. Having a post deleted isn't a reflection on you as a person, just a moderator call as to what belongs and what doesn't. What is appropriate and what isn't. I also don't see a rule that says: "No Second Chances". If Vronsky felt strongly enough that "8 Million Ways To Die" was worthy of an FPP, he could have tried again. He could have engaged in constructive discussion with Cortex as to what the post lacked/what the post did wrong, gone back to the internet to find supporting research, and made the post again.

I've seen lots of anger recently about post deletions. It seems that people often take deleted posts to heart. I do recognize that a lot of effort goes into FPP's (at least sometimes). But I really think that people need to take a step back when their post is deleted. Because in the overwhelming majority of cases, it is not in any way meant as a reflection on you as a person: it is simply a call, by moderators, made to satisfy a set of guidelines that has made Metafilter successful for many years.

Vronsky seems like an intelligent poster, and given the above, I wonder if Vronsky left for reasons unrelated to the post deletion. But even if not, he will be missed, and I hope he comes back.
posted by HabeasCorpus at 2:02 PM on January 24, 2010


[I'm thinking of tellurian's post from the other day where a lot of people were like "why did you link to this?" but a lot of people seemed to find it interesting and by the time I saw it in the flag queue there was some discussion going]
Me in a flag queue. This is some kind of wonderful.
posted by tellurian at 3:08 PM on January 24, 2010


⚐⚐⚐⚐⚐ME⚐⚐⚐⚐⚐⚐⚐
posted by tellurian at 3:10 PM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


My first FPP was deleted. And it should have been, and it helped me learn to make better ones (I think.) A later post I thought was better quality got taken out later, but I respected the mods' reasons, as it was a single link to Slate, on a topic (Palin) with which MetaFilter generally has trouble. And I now keep track of deleted threads because seeing what goes is an ongoing learning experience. In sum, I think the mods are doing a good job. And I'm OK with this deletion too though I liked the FPP.

Having said that, I am really sorry to see vronsky go, even if this isn't the first time. Is there any way to communicate that a lot of us miss him and hope he returns soon?

On the subject of LOL, OMG, and for that matter IMHO, seems like they've all gotten to chestnut status after better than a decade of internet overuse, but YMMV.

Lastly, very sorry to see that you disabled your mail, Blazecock. Particularly since you are located near me and I value your comments. Please consider putting it back up and bringing any harassment you have experienced to Metatalk. Of course I would have memailed you this last if I could have . . .
posted by bearwife at 3:58 PM on January 24, 2010


Just to be clear, my "LOL!!!" comment was a joke, although I did in fact laugh out loud when I read cortex's comment: I have nothing polite to say in response to this.

My post and comments are not rude or antagonistic. No one needs to agree with me. I was having a discussion. It's my understanding that a discussion goes back and forth several or more times. Several people disagreed with me and changed my thinking. I favorited their comments because I sometimes do that to say, "I agree".

I get the impression my comments pissed people off not because they disagreed with them, but because "He has no right criticize. He hasn't been here long enough. Who the hell does he think he is?" Some people disagreed with my comments and explained why, including cortex. That's fine. The personal attacks, on the other hand, just seem mean.

I also want to be clear that I don't "represent" vronsky or speak for him.

As for the discussion in general, I have a better understanding of things now. Personally, I would like to see more posts like the one which was deleted.
posted by Mike Buechel at 4:27 PM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


I just spent the week at LinuxConf Australia (which was in New Zealand), and I am now inured to netspeak in real life. Especially Fail.

People whining about rules seem to have missed the point that MeFi is basically moderated to taste, not rules. Matt took a long to time to get his first mode because it's not just some mindless "read rulebook, pull lever" gig; it's a job about preserving and evolving a certain sensibility and providing a certain experience. It's good that way.
posted by rodgerd at 4:40 PM on January 24, 2010


Mike Beuchel: My post and comments are not rude or antagonistic.

Sometimes people are antagonized by things you might not intend as antagonistic. Especially if you are new to a community.
posted by Nabubrush at 5:02 PM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


My post and comments are not rude or antagonistic.

They may be sincerely meant, but they sometimes come across as somewhat tone-deaf. I appreciate that you may find cortex's comments or deletion reasons "bewildering", but it may be a good idea to do a reality check and figure out if you think this is a site-wide problem or just a personal problem. You and cortex just may have really different communication styles.

MetaTalk is definitely the place to do that sort of thing, I guess, but it's usually easier to talk about these sorts of things if a question is more open. So for example

- I was dismayed the recent post was deleted and I found cortex's reason confusing. Is it just me?
- The explanation by cortex makes very little sense. I would like to suggest to cortex that, he being a very clever man (I'm being sincere), writing plainly might be a good idea. I am often bewildered by his comments. I suspect that oftentimes it's on purpose so as to allow for the largest number of contingencies.

The second approach, yours, seems to me to accuse cortex of writing in a somewhat vague style for the purposes of plausible denial or something. Forgive me if that's not what you intended, but it seems a little needley and pokey if you were really just trying to understand something.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 5:24 PM on January 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


oll korreck // Old Kinderhook

Those are theories but acc. to wiki, the oldest recorded instances are "OK" itself, not something longer that got acronymized. Other theories: from okeh (like the record label), a widely used Choctaw word circa 1812, and waaw-kay, an affirmation in the West African language Wolof, used among American slaves as far back as 1784.
posted by msalt at 5:30 PM on January 24, 2010


For what? Oklahoma? Seems like it would be a bit, uh, rococo to say "Oklahoma!" every time I agree with some one.

As far as I can tell from the OED (thanks, cortex!), klangklangston is exactly right; it's an abbreviation of a misspelling of all correct, possibly first used by Andrew Jackson. It was also an abbreviation, as indicated by box above, of Old Kinderhook, a nickname for Martin Van Buren, and was used in his presidential campaign. I rather get the impression that the two terms were conflated, probably intentionally by Van Buren's campaign, and thus O.K. entered the popular lexicon.

Scream and cry all you want, but if O.K. is any indication, OMG and LOL are going to be just as well established in our lexicon in thirty years.
posted by Caduceus at 5:42 PM on January 24, 2010


That thought makes me want to cry.
posted by lilac girl at 5:50 PM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


That last sentence wasn't aimed at msalt, or anyone particular, really.
posted by Caduceus at 5:50 PM on January 24, 2010


I don't think that O.K. is any indication of what will happen with OMG and LOL. Of course, I was wrong about the flying cars, too.
posted by Nabubrush at 8:01 PM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Only 5 years left to get our shit together and make hoverboards.
posted by carsonb at 8:04 PM on January 24, 2010


"He has no right criticize. He hasn't been here long enough. Who the hell does he think he is?"

Speaking for myself, as someone who said he thinks you ought to lurk more, it's not really about who the hell you think you are. It's about how there's an idea in my head of what an average conversation on one of the Metafilter sites looks like, and how "LOL!!!" just doesn't fit. It's not part of the vernacular, the gestalt here, or at least I don't think it has been in the past. And that's one of the things I really like about the MeFi sites--they feel like an island of civility where people care about how they present themselves, textually. Metafilter feels to me a little like Usenet did before the September that never ended. (If your online existence starts after 1993, that might not mean anything to you, so here's wikipedia on the subject.) And when people come in tossing off "LOL!!!"s or @poster-style reply syntax, it triggers my sense that here's someone who either: a) hasn't been here long enough to have figured out and absorbed what the cultural norms here are or b) doesn't care what the norms are, and is going to do things his way.

The latter is the less charitable interpretation, so someone telling you to lurk more is actually taking the kinder approach. The less kind approach is to assume you're one of the encroaching AOL horde, and tell you straight up to get the fuck out. Either one sort of functions as the community's immune response to a perceived invader. In response, you could learn what the norms are and make an effort to follow them yourself, or you could continue not to care what the norms are and by continuing to ignore them as you become more integrated into the community, try to shift them more to your mode. I'm obviously hoping for the former.

So, if it helps, don't think of "lurk moar, newb" as a personal attack. Think of it as someone at a cocktail party politely letting you know that there's a banner of toilet paper stuck to your shoe. We're acknowledging that you have the right to be here, participating, and we'd rather you knew when you're embarrassing yourself.

And maybe in 30 years when we're all using compressed txt-speak, we can look back at this and sob into our synthohol laugh.
posted by hades at 8:52 PM on January 24, 2010 [15 favorites]


Goddammit vronsky, get your ass back here. OK?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 1:47 AM on January 25, 2010


Mike, I think another issue that sort of lengthened the outraged response to some of your comments is that it took you a long time to even say you didn't mean to be hostile or aggressive and it seemed like it took dozens of people saying "WTF" (paraphrased) to say so before you backed off with the "LOL!!!" which really does not fit here on MeTa.
posted by kalessin at 6:24 AM on January 25, 2010 [2 favorites]


You could have a user number in the single digits and get shit for using "LOL" sincerely (if that is even possible) on MeFi, dude.



I can't wait until LOL becomes so archaic it can be reintroduced as a MeFi in-joke.
posted by fourcheesemac at 6:32 AM on January 25, 2010


SIS

sob in silence
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:41 AM on January 25, 2010


(or using "dude")
posted by fourcheesemac at 6:47 AM on January 25, 2010


I've been handed 24 hour suspensions on this site for a lot less offensive comments than LOL.
posted by gman at 6:50 AM on January 25, 2010


(or using "dude")
posted by fourcheesemac


Wait a minute...Those of us who actually grew up saying "dude" because we grew up in an actual Southern California surf town in the 60s/70s, now have to stop saying it because Cameron Crowe went undercover, ripped off our dialogue to make himself famous and then rest of the world started overusing it to death?

That's bogus, dude.
posted by vacapinta at 7:10 AM on January 25, 2010


LOL, dude.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:24 AM on January 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


Indeed, an increased number of hall monitors- it affects the site.
Crunchland was about fifty times more effective at it though.
posted by sgt.serenity at 7:51 AM on January 25, 2010


I'm jetlagged and also watching "Law and Order" in French

...I actually kind of want to try this now. It sounds intriguingly mind-altering.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:11 AM on January 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'm jetlagged and also watching "Law and Order" in French

...I actually kind of want to try this now. It sounds intriguingly mind-altering.


Once, in Austria, I was hella jetlagged and watching some Miami Vice on German TV in German. The Germans are exquisitely precise with their voice overs so the German was very much in sync with the English lip movements. I know a teensy amount of German which made it even more strange at the time.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:23 AM on January 25, 2010


Dude, there is nothing wrong with using dude. It's how I talk. When I was 15, I thought it was cool. By the time I was 20 and realized what an idiot it made me sound like, it was ingrained into my consciousness, part of my personality. Now, at 39, people seem to tolerate it, perhaps they think I'm being ironic, perhaps I'm just a casual easy-going guy; they don't understand I can't stop at this point.

Yes, it's a born-in-California thing. You got a problem with that, dude?
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 8:59 AM on January 25, 2010


I call people dude and if they can't hang they can go talk to someone else.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 9:02 AM on January 25, 2010 [4 favorites]


don't call me dude!
posted by nomisxid at 9:03 AM on January 25, 2010


D*** is a word I've long had to fight to NOT use. On first hearing it become popular in zeitgeist (late 80s in my neck of the woods, via the skate-punks), I just thought it sounded dumb (certainly immature) and resolved to NOT go there. But man, it's been hard. It just keeps creeping up. Just that last sentence there; my first impulse was to say "But d***, it's been hard". But I fought it off. I consciously chose "man", which lets face it, is the word that d*** has most replaced. Sorry, d***, MAN's just the better word.

And, for what it's worth, neither works when applied to women/girls.
posted by philip-random at 9:34 AM on January 25, 2010


I'd post my birth cert here if it would help. I was born in 1968 in Riverside, CA.

You can have my dude when you tear it from my cold dead hands, dude.
posted by kalessin at 9:40 AM on January 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


Whoa dudes.
posted by Artw at 10:04 AM on January 25, 2010


Just to be clear, my "LOL!!!" comment was a joke, although I did in fact laugh out loud when I read cortex's comment: I have nothing polite to say in response to this.

My post and comments are not rude or antagonistic.


I think I have a perspective here that will help you grok how that might come off, and I hope you take it in the well meaning spirit I intend.

Recently, much to my embarassment, I had a pretty nasty going-at-it with the mods where I pretty seriously stepped over the line while thinking I was trying to have a discussion in good faith. Where I overstepped my bounds without meaning to wasn't in some kind of hard and fast "against the rules of metafilter" kind of way or anything, and it might not be totally apparent to someone who was in my position what was wrong about it until after the fact. That being the case, I found that going back over my comments, and thinking of them from the perspective of the mods, I was basically being insulting. I don't want to get into another thing about that particular discussion except to say that what I handled poorly was basically to make an accusation about what the mods intend, and how they feel about metafilter and/or mefites. I got a similar response along the lines of "it's pretty hard to respond to this politely," and it was part of what made me stop and rethink.

The thing to keep in mind is this: jessamyn, cortex, et al. love metafilter. they love it as much as you do or I do, and probably more. and something that really isn't fair to them (and which they get too often) is when someone says "this makes me think you guys are (gaming the system in X way / covering your asses in X way / hiding your real feelings in X way / lying to us in X way / etc...)" This isn't to say that you can't confront them - within reason - about where you think there's a disconnect, or that you can't disagree about a decision or other. But, in the sense that the mods are real people with deeply invested feelings about the site and not just rule-robots, there are accusations you can make that are pretty much straight up hurtful. And if you're interested in being fair to them when you disagree, this kind of hurtful thing is a conversational direction you should consider avoiding. I ran headfirst into it myself, and I'm not proud of it. Because when it happened I really without realizing it was thinking of them as some kind of antagonist instead of people whose investment in the site matches my own, if not surpasses it, and who are trying their best to be good to and for the site.

And that's important. Part of why metafilter works as well as it does is because the mods are not overlords with any kind of ivory tower perspective on things. they're much closer to the old-timey notion of a public servant, in that they're doing what they do FOR us. they're here in the midst of the controversies and the problems and the triumphs with us, getting what good the rest of us get and getting a lot more of the bad than we do. so i find it helps to think of them as people in the same community as me so that I treat them the way I'd like to be treated, because when I get flip or accusatory in that way, I'm not being fair. and if other people think I'm being a dick for acting that way... well, they have a pretty fair point.

getting in your face about the LOL thing, while there are different ways to do that, is basically about saying "you're not being fair." from what I've read in thread, it has nothing to do with your usernumber. so consider that, though you didn't intend it, you might just be rude with that shit. because maybe you didn't realize how insulting an accusation like that is, and your casual dismissal of the reaction contributes to that. but you've been told as politely as possible that it wasn't fair by the mods (and maybe not quite as politely by some other users), so that you know now. Because everybody's different, everybody has things they don't like being called or accusations about themselves they don't appreciate hearing, and for the mods that's a biggie. and for the sake of being fair, it'll be helpful to remember that the next time you speak to them because they're targets for community ire but they're also people who love this site and the people on it.

i've learned this lesson a couple times, forgotten it to my shame, and had to learn it again. I hope this helps you learn that same lesson, because I think it's worth learning however many times someone needs to.
posted by shmegegge at 10:49 AM on January 25, 2010 [13 favorites]


also, I don't mean to speak for the mods. if i've represented them poorly or inaccurately in any way, apologies in advance.
posted by shmegegge at 10:50 AM on January 25, 2010


I've got a spare disemvoweller if anybody needs one. Think about the paradise we could be living in! MG LL!
posted by Skot at 11:05 AM on January 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


I only use "dude" in two and a half ways:

1) When someone does or says something obnoxious, but due to the nuances of our relationship I can't scold them outright. Example: "Dude, just tip the guy, it's not his fault there's a crying baby at the next table." This form can alternatively be expressed as an interjection: "Dude!" Counterintuitively, this form works to address both genders.

1.5) As an ironic or sarcastic subversion of (1), when I am mocking a scolding tone for something I am not actually criticizing.

2) Describing stereotypically male attributes. Example: "Trying to dam that source of flowing water? That's such a dude thing." Note that this form is not used to describe objectively male attributes. "You pee standing up? Jeez, what a dude thing to do." It works as a play on arbitrary stereotypes, by using the aggressively casual word "dude" to undermine the idea that such stereotypes might be taken seriously, thus being problematic for descriptions that should be taken seriously.

I do not use "dude" as a general form of casual address ("Dude, that movie was fantastic!"). That usage is far too closely identified with surfer subculture to be broadly acceptable.

I think the problem with MetaFilter is that the above has not been enumerated anywhere on the site. The guidelines then should state that using "dude" as a general form of casual address is not allowed, to avoid any confusion.
posted by Riki tiki at 11:12 AM on January 25, 2010


Dd.
posted by Skot at 11:13 AM on January 25, 2010 [1 favorite]


> My post and comments are not rude or antagonistic.

You don't get to decide that. Read shmegegge's comment. Then read it again and think about it.
posted by languagehat at 12:17 PM on January 25, 2010


what I handled poorly was basically to make an accusation about what the mods intend

I find it's a pretty good rule in life that telling someone what they intend, or how they feel, makes any disagreement worse. So I try really hard not to.
posted by msalt at 12:21 PM on January 25, 2010 [3 favorites]


yeah, you'd think I'd keep that in mind around here, but some broken part of my brain just gets all riled up. more's the shame.
posted by shmegegge at 12:58 PM on January 25, 2010


Just to be clear, my "LOL!!!" comment was a joke, although I did in fact laugh out loud when I read cortex's comment: I have nothing polite to say in response to this.

LOL!!!

srsly: not waawkay
posted by davejay at 3:05 PM on January 25, 2010


I can't wait until LOL becomes so archaic it can be reintroduced as a MeFi in-joke.

I thought it had.
posted by Mike Buechel at 4:23 PM on January 25, 2010


shmegegge: Thanks for your very thoughtful and informative comment.
posted by Mike Buechel at 4:30 PM on January 25, 2010


hades: I didn't take offense at your first comment. In fact, the Todd Lokken made me laugh (but not out loud) when I read about the origin. The story is kind of sweet.

On the other hand, this comment is offensive to me. I'm going to be charitable, as you have been with me. I'm thinking you might not have worded the comment the way you were really thinking. But taking it at face value, many of the ideas are obnoxious. You're right that I am not one of the elite pre-1993ers. I don't code assembly, have never made an ascii image and don't know my UDP from my asshole.

You wrote, "you could learn what the norms are and make an effort to follow them yourself, or you could continue not to care what the norms are" and "we'd rather you knew when you're embarrassing yourself." Like cortex, I have no polite response to this.

I really don't give a shit what people think about me or about "fitting in". Well, that's not true. I do care, but not much. What I do care about is refraining from hurting people, especially with my words. I oftentimes come across as abrasive here and in real life. That's a personality flaw I have. But the diversity of people is what I love about life; snobbery and elitism is what I hate.

A couple of years ago, there was a guy in my town who was cited for violating some community ordinance. He had painted the shutters on his house some color that was not approved of. In protest, he painted his entire house an awful shade of purple and put his house up for sale. It sat on the market, empty for about a year. I'm sure he lost money.
posted by Mike Buechel at 5:34 PM on January 25, 2010


I consciously chose "man", which lets face it, is the word that d*** has most replaced. Sorry, d***, MAN's just the better word.

And, for what it's worth, neither works when applied to women/girls.


Man signifies male adulthood, whereas dude signifies (among myriad other things) urbanity. Are you suggesting that females cannot be urbane, man?
posted by Sys Rq at 6:06 PM on January 25, 2010


Man signifies male adulthood, whereas dude signifies (among myriad other things) urbanity. Are you suggesting that females cannot be urbane, man?

Dude.
posted by grouse at 6:26 PM on January 25, 2010


Are you suggesting that females cannot be urbane, man?

First of all, there are no rules.

That said, Dude/Man always sounds kind of sloppy to me when I hear a guy referring to a woman/girl as such. Women/girls, on the other hand, are entirely free to self-identify as any damn thing they please ... as are men/boys, of course.
posted by philip-random at 6:32 PM on January 25, 2010


Okay, so you're hung up on dudes. What about guys?
posted by Sys Rq at 6:42 PM on January 25, 2010


We're all guys, aren't we? What else are you supposed to shout at a mixed group:

"Hey, y'all" ???
posted by philip-random at 6:44 PM on January 25, 2010


Guys is ungendered to me. A group of any prople, three or more, are guys.

Hey you guys!
posted by The Whelk at 7:39 PM on January 25, 2010


I've been told that guys is too gendered before, so my rule of thumb is that if someone objects to it, I try not to do it in their company. i've been told that y'all is actually probably the best way to replace guys.

unless you're in dallas, where I've been forbidden to ever say y'all again.
posted by shmegegge at 7:42 PM on January 25, 2010


also there needs to be some kind of graphic or ascii signifier for the Chunk voice when someone types out "hey you GUUuyys!" versus the more general "Hey you guys!"
posted by shmegegge at 7:43 PM on January 25, 2010


Mike Buechel: A couple of years ago, there was a guy in my town who was cited for violating some community ordinance. He had painted the shutters on his house some color that was not approved of. In protest, he painted his entire house an awful shade of purple and put his house up for sale. It sat on the market, empty for about a year. I'm sure he lost money.

I'm not entirely clear on what you're saying with this anecdote. Are you the Guy of the story, standing strong against arbitrary standards even at great personal cost?

Don't be that Guy. I'm sure even he hated the awful shade of purple, and he changed exactly nothing in the world by making it his personal crusade. He had such a knee-jerk opposition to authority and conformity that he managed to make the lives of everyone around him just a little worse, and gained nothing from the exercise.

Sometimes conformity is bad. Sometimes authority is abused. But rebelling against those things just for the sake of it is not the mark of a reasonable person.

Pick your battles. Fight the fights that actually matter to you. And give mathowie, jessamyn, cortex, pb, and vacapinta the benefit of the freaking doubt in the future because they have earned it over and over and over and over again.
posted by Riki tiki at 8:44 PM on January 25, 2010 [7 favorites]


don't know my UDP from my asshole.

I'd just like to say I know the difference between my asshole and everything in the world that isn't my asshole.
posted by Bookhouse at 10:25 PM on January 25, 2010 [4 favorites]


But you don't know shit from Shinola.

Sorry. Had to.
posted by klangklangston at 10:39 PM on January 25, 2010


> I really don't give a shit what people think about me or about "fitting in".

Yeah, that's coming across loud and clear. But keep on fighting The Man!
posted by languagehat at 12:01 PM on January 26, 2010 [3 favorites]


I really don't give a shit what people think about me or about "fitting in". Well, that's not true. I do care, but not much. What I do care about is refraining from hurting people, especially with my words.

But the people who are suggesting you spend more time as an observer aren't just giving you a snarky "lurk moar" brush-off, they are actually trying to tell you HOW to refrain from hurting people with your words. Sometimes the best way to tell someone how to do something is to show them, is all.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 1:02 PM on January 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


[A few comments removed. Careful with the charged accusations, please.]
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:13 PM on January 26, 2010


[A few comments removed. Careful with the charged accusations, please.]
posted by cortex at 10:13 PM on January 26 [+] [!]

Which is pretty ironic considering this whole mess was caused by a badly received comment of mine addressing cortex's moderation and in the end have him to thank. He's a bigger man than I am.
posted by Mike Buechel at 11:30 PM on January 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


You should see his doughnut.
posted by chinston at 9:02 AM on January 27, 2010 [5 favorites]


Which is pretty ironic considering this whole mess was caused by a badly received comment of mine addressing cortex's moderation and in the end have him to thank. He's a bigger man than I am.

Well, I don't think cortex doing his job makes him a better man than you, but I think it does highlight what a lot of people here have been saying from the beginning: the mods do their jobs conscientiously, and usually, well. Your first couple of comments in this thread made it seem as if you were operating from a different starting premise, and so they seemed poorly pitched.

We have "This should not have been deleted" threads in MeTa all the time. Some give the mods the benefit of the doubt and simply argue for a different line over what should be deleted. Some take a confrontational stance with the mods and usually their argument about what should stand gets lost in their seeming desire to pick a fight. The former can be just as vehement, but tend to go better all around.
posted by OmieWise at 10:08 AM on January 27, 2010


vronsky! Thunderbolt and Lightfoot is up on Hulu!
posted by steef at 4:50 PM on January 28, 2010


vronsky please come back you are the best poster
:(
posted by Potomac Avenue at 11:56 AM on January 29, 2010


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