This. A million times this. This. June 18, 2010 4:49 AM   Subscribe

I have noticed your interesting quirk and it interests me! Why do folks copy and past someone else's comment in a thread and then add a "This." or a "A million times this." to it? Don't favorite counts indicate "This."? If everybody "This."'d for every comment they agreed with, threads would stall and go nowhere - it'd just be an endless recycling of the same few comments. Perhaps this is not a big deal and I have simply woken up grumpy and overly sensitive. Or perhaps you have noticed this trend, too, and wish it to stop? Commence with the copying, the pasting, and the "This."ing!
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates to Etiquette/Policy at 4:49 AM (177 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

Word.
posted by UbuRoivas at 4:52 AM on June 18, 2010


Agreed.
posted by cribcage at 4:53 AM on June 18, 2010


I find it vaguely lazy and would appreciate people using their words more.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 4:53 AM on June 18, 2010 [7 favorites]


what jessamyn said.
posted by UbuRoivas at 4:55 AM on June 18, 2010 [10 favorites]


Don't favorite counts indicate "This."

Yes, but nobody can tell that it is you personally who is indicating agreement without clicking on the little "x favourites" link. Quote+This lets you announce to the world that you agree! And that's what the Internet is for.
posted by A Thousand Baited Hooks at 4:56 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


I am in support of the concept as it is expressed.
posted by GenjiandProust at 5:00 AM on June 18, 2010 [4 favorites]


Don't favorite counts indicate "This."?

Not for me -- I use favorites as bookmarks and will actually go through and read all the stuff I've favorited in the past because often it is stuff that makes me giggle although I'll also favorite things that intrigue me or that are really interesting and of which I know I will want to be reminded.

I don't do the "This." thing either, but there are times someone says something so perfectly that I am taken aback and I do understand why future respondents would want to emphasize that, although it's more noise than signal. I think it actually makes the most sense to me in Ask because there it is in support of specific advice and might help the poster determine the relative merits of different proposed courses of action.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 5:03 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


If everybody "This."'d for every comment they agreed with, threads would stall and go nowhere - it'd just be an endless recycling of the same few comments.

STATUS OF COUNTERFACTUAL: UNOBSERVED
posted by DU at 5:05 AM on June 18, 2010 [8 favorites]


"This."ing

I have never in my life seen one word with three punctuation marks... I'm impressed!
posted by HuronBob at 5:08 AM on June 18, 2010 [4 favorites]


That.
posted by jonmc at 5:09 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


"This."'d

Four???? Four punctuation marks in one word????!!!!
posted by HuronBob at 5:09 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


Four???? Four punctuation marks in one word????!!!!

Boom. You've just been "This."'d.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 5:10 AM on June 18, 2010


Why do folks copy and past someone else's comment in a thread and then add a "This." or a "A million times this." to it?

They have nothing to say but want to be heard.

See also the FTFY (fixed that for you) debates, and 90% of of internet memes.
posted by hellojed at 5:11 AM on June 18, 2010


It's ok to use "this" as an opener when you're building on someone else's statements. There should be more sentences after "this". If it's just a standalone "this" then it is probably an attempt to be cool by proxy and should be shunned.
posted by Burhanistan at 5:12 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's slightly annoying, perhaps, but is it worth taking to metatalk?

If everybody "This."'d for every comment they agreed with, threads would stall and go nowhere - it'd just be an endless recycling of the same few comments.

If indeed, but this has never happened and likely never will.
posted by blucevalo at 5:13 AM on June 18, 2010


I was thinking about "this" just last night for some reason. It bothers me a lot. I believe that aside from just expressing agreement, it does it in a passive aggressive sort of way. I don't want to overstate it, but it seems to me to be akin to saying "duh" to someone, a way to dismiss them. In this case, the person being dismissed is anyone who doesn't agree with the "this." The difference between saying "I agree," or typing your own concurrence is that a quote with "this" seems to suggest that the point is so self-evident that it need not even be agreed with.

I'm of course not suggesting that everyone who uses it a bad person, I'm just describing the underlying dynamics that make it distasteful to me.
posted by OmieWise at 5:14 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


I have never in my life seen one word with three punctuation marks... I'm impressed!

fo'c's'le.
posted by Tube at 5:15 AM on June 18, 2010 [12 favorites]


They have nothing to say but want to be heard.

Quoted for truth.
posted by goshling at 5:20 AM on June 18, 2010


"This."'s're bad.

fo'c's'le. 'n' m'c'r'm'ck.
posted by fleacircus at 5:21 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


Quoted for truth.

"T."'dTFY
posted by fleacircus at 5:23 AM on June 18, 2010


Sometimes I long for the younger days of USENET, when anyone foolish and conceited enough to make an "I agree" post was tracked down by IP address, hauled off to the stocks and pelted with rotten fruit. The only thing I find more irritating than "This." is single-line "confirmation bias" responses in Ask Metafilter, even (for some psychological reason that I lack the insight to work out) when they are correct.

Overly melodramatic relationship AskMes can be annoying too, but they can also be such a rich source of comedy that I'm willing to let them pass.
posted by A Thousand Baited Hooks at 5:27 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


Sometimes I long for the younger days of USENET, when anyone foolish and conceited enough to make an "I agree" post was tracked down by IP address, hauled off to the stocks and pelted with rotten fruit.

Me too.
posted by goshling at 5:33 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


"Quoted for truth."QFT

FTFY
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 5:33 AM on June 18, 2010


Sometimes, there is a long rambly comment, from which one admires and agrees with a small chunk. One could simply restate that chunk in one's own words, and acknowledge that thought had been expressed before, or one can quote the little chunk and express one's agreement. I tend to prefer the latter option.
posted by bardophile at 5:37 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


Yeah I know, right?
posted by molecicco at 5:39 AM on June 18, 2010


I find it vaguely lazy and would appreciate people using their words more.

Isn't it kinda similar to obit threads in which most comments consist of a simple dot?
posted by gman at 5:41 AM on June 18, 2010 [5 favorites]


Don't favorite counts indicate "This."?

not this.
posted by russm at 5:42 AM on June 18, 2010


Perhaps this is not a big deal and I have simply woken up grumpy and overly sensitive.

This.

Also, not everyone uses favorites as a gesture of public agreement; some use them as (I think) they were designed to be used, to mark a post or favorite for later reference. And others, who do use favorites as a gauge of popularity, want a more individualized public gesture than just to be added to a look-up-able db list of those who favorited a post or comment.
posted by aught at 5:42 AM on June 18, 2010


I find it vaguely lazy and would appreciate people using their words more.
posted by jessamyn at 4:53 AM on June 18


Quote+This lets you announce to the world that you agree! And that's what the Internet is for.
posted by A Thousand Baited Hooks at 4:56 AM on June 18


cosigned.
posted by Mizu at 5:50 AM on June 18, 2010


Why do folks copy and past someone else's comment in a thread and then add a "This." or a "A million times this." to it?

Because sometimes a comment is particularly well written and a person likes to see it repeated. I don't see it as a problem on the site, it hardly seems to be done a lot.

Sometimes I long for the younger days of USENET, when anyone foolish and conceited enough to make an "I agree" post was tracked down by IP address, hauled off to the stocks and pelted with rotten fruit.

Frankly, it's this sort of attitude that internet could use less. This almost gleeful savaging of others, just because they follow different conventions or are ignorant is far from high level mark of human behavior.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:50 AM on June 18, 2010 [11 favorites]


One could simply restate that chunk in one's own words, and acknowledge that thought had been expressed before, or one can quote the little chunk and express one's agreement. I tend to prefer the latter option.

Good news, everyone! I've discovered a third way. If the initial point is persuasive enough, and if you have nothing substantial to add to the conversation, it is possible to not say anything at all. I've tried it a couple of times, and it seems to be working out pretty well.
posted by zamboni at 5:52 AM on June 18, 2010


A simple dot? Doesn't everybody else write a novella-length personal reflection about the deceased &amp then shrink it down into a microdot-style image, so as not to appear too much like they're trying to steal the limelight?
posted by UbuRoivas at 5:54 AM on June 18, 2010


Isn't it kinda similar to obit threads in which most comments consist of a simple dot?

No, actually. The obit thread thing is a convention here. People may or may not like it, but over time it's grown to stand in for "hey I don't have much to add but that's too bad" or something similar though we say it's a shorthand for a moment of silence. So, it's a shortcut but I don't see it as lazy because tons of people use it. Now what we're really looking at is the difference between things that are conventions and tons of people use versus things that are still sot of on the fringes but some people use and other people are driven crazy by [@notation, I'm looking in your direction] and my general feeling about all of this is: does it make conversation better or worse?

So, even though I'm not that keen on @notation, it doesn't markedly screw up conversation. People who use to to make massive comments replying to everyone are not making weird comments because of @ notation, they're making those comments weirdly because they're replying to everyone individually, bla bla.

The . doesn't screw up conversation because nearly everyone knows what it means and it doesn't bug people [though seeing it in other places can be annoying, I can not believe that someone's figured out a way to use a period sarcastically, but there you go.]

And "this" well it strikes me as a way of saying "soandso said it better than I could" but without actually using seven words. We're not writing telegrams here. You can use all seven words. Plus I agree, there's a bit of a "duh" aspect to it, as OmieWise says that I do not like.

So, no big deal and I don't think we'll get to a point where we're telling people not to do it, but just that hey if you're asking yourself "How can be more present on MetaFilter and participate here more actively?" using full sentences and not just "This." would be a way to do that.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 5:54 AM on June 18, 2010 [3 favorites]


Don't favorite counts indicate "This."

I favorite more things I disagree with, or am completely amazed at (in utter inanity). DO NOT TRUST YOUR FAVORITES. They are tricky at best.
posted by blue_beetle at 5:56 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


Good news, everyone! I've discovered a third way. If the initial point is persuasive enough, and if you have nothing substantial to add to the conversation, it is possible to not say anything at all. I've tried it a couple of times, and it seems to be working out pretty well.

That.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 6:02 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


I don't want to overstate it, but it seems to me to be akin to saying "duh" to someone, a way to dismiss them. In this case, the person being dismissed is anyone who doesn't agree with the "this."

I dislike "that is all" at the end of comments for the same reason. I think it's sometimes intended to mean, modestly, "and this small thing is all I have to say" but it sounds like, "And that is all there is to be said on the subject, so you all everybody can shut the fuck up now."
posted by FelliniBlank at 6:02 AM on June 18, 2010


Bully, I say!
posted by Smart Dalek at 6:05 AM on June 18, 2010


We need some "quoted for truth" t-shirts.
posted by orange swan at 6:05 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


If the initial point is persuasive enough, and if you have nothing substantial to add to the conversation,

hmmm. a) Sometimes the long rambly nature of the post means that the persuasive bit gets lost. Or one actually disagrees with parts of it, but strongly agrees with the pull quote.
b) Pulling a quote from within a larger text serves to emphasize that particular portion. That editorial choice CAN serve as "something substantial to add"

So while I agree with your statement should both of your conditions be met, I don't believe they are met in the situation I was describing.
posted by bardophile at 6:06 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


I think it's sometimes intended to mean, modestly, "and this small thing is all I have to say" but it sounds like, "And that is all there is to be said on the subject, so you all everybody can shut the fuck up now."

Try hearing it in the voice of Gary Burghoff as Radar O'Reilly over a tinny P.A. system and see if that makes a difference.
posted by aught at 6:07 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


So, it's a shortcut but I don't see it as lazy because tons of people use it.

Like drive-thrus?
posted by gman at 6:07 AM on June 18, 2010


Like drive-thrus?

If you're just 4thelulz-ing here, please spare me.

But since you asked and since I feel like I pretty much need to discuss topics raised in MetaTalk. Drive-thrus solve a bunch of problems for people including the "I'm too lazy to get out of my car" problem. If we're talking about community conventions here on MetaFilter, it's useful to look at what everyone else on MetaFilter does generally and how outside the standard deviation something is. The . is normal for here. The @ notation is not. "This." sort of is and I think that's what people are talking about.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:14 AM on June 18, 2010


Sometimes I favourite stuff just because it gave me lolz. Once I favourited a quickly-deleted answer to a question along the lines of "Why don't I burn easily," and it was, roughly, "Why don't you go put your hand on the stove, you bragging bastard," and by favoriting I was socking it away for future sniggering, not "A thousand times this!"
posted by kmennie at 6:16 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


Dis right here.
posted by Mister_A at 6:19 AM on June 18, 2010


I don't see it as lazy because tons of people use it

I don't think the obit dot is lazy, but tons of people using it doesn't make it not lazy, as you seem to be suggesting here. Laziness can be conventionalized. (See: well, almost everything.) But I think the obit dot isn't lazy for a different reason: the brevity is part of what it's expressing. It's a non-contradictory way of saying "this person's life can' t be adequately summed up in words." So I agree with your conclusion that the obit dot is not lazy, but completely disagree with how you got there. Popularity is generally a poor measure of goodness.
posted by scottreynen at 6:21 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


hellojed: They have nothing to say but want to be heard.

Not this. More like "they have something to say and are not being heard."

I've done it maybe twice in my entire time here, and I'm pretty sure I've only done it when there's a clear, rational, substantiated and well-expressed but minority opinion or counter point expressed that is being ignored in the hullabaloo.

"This" seems more polite than EXCUSE ME, THIS WAS COVERED IF YOU PEOPLE COULD BE BOTHERED TO READ INSTEAD OF JUST KNEE JERKING YOUR OUTRAGE/RANDOM GUESSES/ MISTAKEN DATA ALL OVER THE THREAD. Which is not a nice thing to say but a thought that does occasionally cross my mind on threads where I am frustrated.

Some points bear repeating without addition. Not often, but not never.
posted by DarlingBri at 6:22 AM on June 18, 2010 [8 favorites]


PS: I myself have been guilty of mistaken data, random guesses and unfiltered outrage, btw, and have appreciated having earlier replies I've missed reposted so I can re-direct myself.
posted by DarlingBri at 6:24 AM on June 18, 2010


Don't favorite counts indicate "This."?

Some users (and all new ones?) have disabled favorite views, so they don't see favorites.

Everyone sees "This."

Particularly in AskMe threads, this is probably useful.
posted by rokusan at 6:25 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


I actually like the "this" convention (at least on Ask). When your main point is to draw attention to how perfectly somebody else expressed something, it makes sense not to want to embellish it more than necessary, even with seven words. And it does seem to happen frequently enough to count as a Meta convention at this point.

(Plus, the number of people in the Meta community who really feel like they couldn't have said something better is usually pretty small. Which keeps the convention from turning into "endless recycling," so it seems like things are pretty much at the right balance right now.)
posted by willbaude at 6:25 AM on June 18, 2010


Great tags, by the way.
posted by rokusan at 6:26 AM on June 18, 2010


The number of people in the Meta community who really feel like they couldn't have said something better is usually pretty small.

This. With a choked up coffee laugh.
posted by rokusan at 6:26 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


What he said.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 6:27 AM on June 18, 2010


Don't favorite counts indicate "This."

For me, they indicate "This. Is. Something. I. Would. Like. To. Come. Back. To."
posted by owtytrof at 6:30 AM on June 18, 2010


I'm glad someone posted this, because "This." is so fucking annoying to me that I nearly scream whenever I see it.

Sometimes I think of Metafilter as a cherished spouse whose once endearing idiosyncrasies have, over many years of happy marriage, turned into perfect diamonds of gall that divorce becomes an attractive option.

"This." is that to me.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 6:30 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


Don't favorite counts indicate "This."

The fact that many of us don't was discussed in excruciating detail in the November favorites experiment discussion. I bookmark for later reading, and generally don't favorite comments at all unless they have recipes or other interesting information in them.

I wouldn't forbid anyone to use "this", but it grates on me. It's lazy writing. If I were being really snarky, I'd say "it's a livejournal term" and run. But I like the mods too well for that, and I do see it in a lot of other blogs and communities now. On the other hand, all bets are off if people start with the "IAWTC" (I agree with this comment).
posted by immlass at 6:34 AM on June 18, 2010


I'm glad someone posted this, because "This." is so fucking annoying to me that I nearly scream whenever I see it.

Lad, you need to chill out.
posted by orange swan at 6:34 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


Regarding leaving a period in obit posts, we all know that it's been compared to the Jewish tradition of leaving a stone on a grave. I leave them in threads with that, and this in mind:
Ritual is a way of expressing our emotions and spiritual needs. We need physical acts to express these things for us, to make them concrete.

Placing a stone on a grave does just that. It works in several ways:

1) It is a sign to others who come to the grave when I am not there that they and I are not the only ones who remember. The stones I see on the grave when I come are a reminder to me that others have come to visit the grave. My loved one is remembered by many others and his/her life continues to have an impact on others, even if I do not see them.

2) When I pick up the stone it sends a message to me. I can still feel my loved one. I can still touch and be touched by him/her. I can still feel the impact that has been made on my life. Their life, love, teachings, values, and morals still make an impression on me. When I put the stone down, it is a reminder to me that I can no longer take this person with me physically. I can only take him/her with me in my heart and my mind and the actions I do because he/she taught me to do them. Their values, morals, ideals live on and continue to impress me - just as the stone has made an impression on my hands - so too their life has made an impression on me that continues.
OK, perhaps that's a bit of a florid justification for simply typing a period. But for me, at least, doing so is a way of indicating that I mourn the passing of someone I respect.
posted by zarq at 6:36 AM on June 18, 2010 [12 favorites]


fo'c's'le

At first, I honestly thought this was a contraction for fo'shizzle.
posted by slogger at 6:36 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


"perfect diamonds of gall" is one of the most curious mixed metaphors I've seen in a long time. I can't decide whether it would be lucrative, painful or fatal for one's gall to turn into diamonds.
posted by UbuRoivas at 6:40 AM on June 18, 2010


I favorite more things I disagree with, or am completely amazed at (in utter inanity). DO NOT TRUST YOUR FAVORITES. They are tricky at best.

This.

Wow. That's the first time I've used "this," and it will probably be the last. But there can be a point to adding nothing to a thread except for some form of "I agree." I know that seems like no-new-information. But if I ask for movie recommendations and one person suggests "The Godfather" and then ten other people write "this" or some other form of agreement, I am more likely to watch the movie than I would if just one person suggested it.

And if just one person here said, "I don't use favorites to show solidarity; I used them as bookmarks," you'd probably think that person was a lone freaks. But there a lot of us freaks on Metafilter. I have never once used a favorite to say, "I agree." I don't used favorites to say anything. I used them to as markers.

Does Internet Explorer still call bookmarks favorites? IE was my first browser and so I've always thought of "favorites" as bookmarks. And back when Matt implemented the feature, I think that was his intent, too. Or at least one of his intents.
posted by grumblebee at 6:40 AM on June 18, 2010


"." isn't lazy, it's an indicator of silence, which is completely different.

Likewise, "this." isn't lazy, it's an indicator of agreement. If we grant that favorites do not necessarily mean agreement, then what other choice is there? And before you say "silence, you attention whore" consider that people express agreement not (always) to say "look at me!" but to lend more weight to the person making the argument. "I agree with that guy" isn't necessarily a statement about ME so much as a lending of political capital to "that guy".
posted by DU at 6:41 AM on June 18, 2010 [3 favorites]


Agreed -- I find it lazy and tiresome if nothing else follows it (ie an explanation of why you agree etc).
posted by modernnomad at 6:49 AM on June 18, 2010



Sometimes I long for the younger days of USENET, when anyone foolish and conceited enough to make an "I agree" post was tracked down by IP address, hauled off to the stocks and pelted with rotten fruit.

Frankly, it's this sort of attitude that internet could use less. This almost gleeful savaging of others, just because they follow different conventions or are ignorant is far from high level mark of human behavior.


I can't help but disagree to a point. Obviously people should be polite, but Internet conventions exist for a reason. We discourage "QFT"ing, "This"ing, "I agree"ing not so much because people's opinions don't matter, but because it becomes a lot of noise quickly. An Internet forum or discussion can be imagined as analogous to a real-life forum or meeting, but there's a big difference. When someone says something poignant, funny, or witty, the entire room can laugh, shout, or applaud at the same time. 1,000 people laughing doesn't interrupt any longer than 3 people. Online, 10 irrelevant responses is half a page of noise on a BBS.

That, and the QFT usually shows up randomly pages later. Imagine a dinner party in which you're having a semi-serious conversation about BP, and the leak belching oil into the gulf. Now imagine a Homer Simpson or Peter Griffin-type boor laughing 2 minutes later, "HA! BELCHING OIL! *BURP!*" That is the "QFT," and they just often don't realize that they're being boors.
posted by explosion at 6:50 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


Don't favorite counts indicate "This."?

(1) A favorite doesn't always mean "I agree." It could mean "This is funny and/or very well put (regardless of whether I think it's the right answer)." It could mean "This comment has interesting links I'd like to keep track of." It could mean you want to go back and read the comment again, for any number of reasons.

(2) You're glossing over the fact that copying and pasting is not necessarily done to a whole comment. If there's a dense, 5-paragraph comment where one or two sentences in the middle brilliantly get to the crux of the whole discussion, it's not surprising if some people have the urge to excerpt that portion and give a quick, "Yeah, I totally agree with this -- you really got to the heart of the matter." And since that's rather wordy considering it's a sentiment people very often want to express, it gets shortened to "This."
posted by Jaltcoh at 6:54 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


I personally first encountered the Thisness via LiveJournal and the fan/fanfic communities. Like @ and other lazy short forms, I'm not surprised that it came here. I'm also not surprised that not all MetaFilter reactions are that welcoming of the Thisness.

I think I come down on jessamyn's side. I wish folks would use their own words.
posted by kalessin at 6:55 AM on June 18, 2010


This. doesn't bother me, maybe because I have seen it used exactly as DarlingBri has described. I may have used it myself, although never as a stand-alone.

I'm sure we've all had the experience of beginning to read a thread, getting worked-up, coming up with something we really want to express, only to reach a comment that sums up our thoughts exactly. You're left with a deflated feeling, a need for release. "This." I imagine sometimes fits the bill. Is it better netiquette to remain silent? Do the rights of the reader not to be bored outweigh the rights of the writer to express their feelings? And if they do, can this "This." usage be discouraged?
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:01 AM on June 18, 2010


This.

Not this.
posted by fuq at 7:02 AM on June 18, 2010


This. This this this this.

"This" is by far my least favorite online shorthand. It turns me into that huffing and puffing crapass that I giggle at in threads where the other crapassess huff and puff about Twitter. Oh, but it really does bug me. Use "I agree", or a favorite, or actually SAY something.

Huff, puff, etc.
posted by dirtdirt at 7:02 AM on June 18, 2010


In addition to my ranty rant above, I'd venture that the reason I loathe this particular idiom so very, very much is that, despite its brevity, it strikes me as tinged with a smug tone. It is as if it's meant to convey that the poster has concluded that s/he is the arbiter of merit and has identified the crucial germ of wisdom or infamy in the post.

This. Here. Look no further. This is the thing that is important.

"I agree/disagree" is by its nature subjective; "This." gestures towards a definitive assertion of objective importance.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 7:12 AM on June 18, 2010




"perfect diamonds of gall" is one of the most curious mixed metaphors I've seen in a long time. I can't decide whether it would be lucrative, painful or fatal for one's gall to turn into diamonds.

They're the new alternative to blood diamonds. Scientists are still working on transmuting the other bodily humours.
posted by zamboni at 7:21 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


ditto.
posted by empath at 7:22 AM on June 18, 2010


Comment threads are conversation. Re-quoting a strongly agreed comment is a personal conversation style for some, as are FTFY, hamburger, obit dots, and @username.
There's nothing more annoying than having a conversation with someone who keeps telling you you're doing it wrong.
posted by rocket88 at 7:24 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


There's nothing more annoying than having a conversation with someone who keeps telling you you're doing it wrong.

Having a conversation about conversation styles is not the same thing as telling someone they're doing it wrong. It seems like you think "This." is a fine convention and people should be allowed to use it, but I don't think your cause is served by suggesting that the discussion about it is something more than it is.
posted by OmieWise at 7:28 AM on June 18, 2010


> There's nothing more annoying than having a conversation with someone who keeps telling you you're doing it wrong.

UR DOIN IT WRONG is a million times worse than "this" and unless it's clearly a jokey dig at a guilty third party and not a commenter here, it should be responded to by yanking off the offenders fingernails with pliers.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:33 AM on June 18, 2010


I think the whole idea of discussing how people should be "allowed" to communicate is ridiculous.
And this thread is very much about getting people to stop This-ing.
posted by rocket88 at 7:34 AM on June 18, 2010


I think it's an effective form of communication.
posted by theora55 at 7:34 AM on June 18, 2010


There's nothing more annoying than having a conversation with someone who keeps telling you you're doing it wrong.

I can't decide whether to be envious of a life where people's communication preferences on Metafilter are the most annoying thing someone deals with or glad that I can't get all het up about other people's (admittedly grating to me) conversational tics.
posted by immlass at 7:35 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


There's nothing more annoying than having a conversation with someone who keeps telling you you're doing it wrong.

I dunno, I think that runs a close second to trying to have a conversation with someone who's doing it wrong.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 7:40 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


"This" is a social convention that's migrated here from 4chan, which doesn't have favoriting so it's their way of making up for the deficiency of their software. Curiously I've noticed that patterns move in both directions; I've seen "." taking hold in the chans recently.
posted by scalefree at 7:47 AM on June 18, 2010


I think the whole idea of discussing how people should be "allowed" to communicate is ridiculous.

REALLY? BECAUSE I THINK EVERYONE HAS PRETTY MUCH AGREED THAT WRITING IN ALL CAPS SHOULD BE FROWNED UPON. OR IS THAT FREE GAME NOW, TOO? (CROSSES FINGERS IN EAGER EXPECTATION OF THE VIGOROUS COMMENTING I SHALL MAKE IF THE CAPS LOCK BAN HAS BEEN RESCINDED.)
posted by Admiral Haddock at 7:48 AM on June 18, 2010


"This" is a social convention that's migrated here from 4chan

Not everything you see on 4chan started on 4chan.
posted by empath at 7:52 AM on June 18, 2010


I think the whole idea of discussing how people should be "allowed" to communicate is ridiculous.

Also, table manners are for people with nothing better to do.

Every time that someone makes the decision to forgo writing an actual response and instead to type a single word or a bit of punctuation, Metafilter gets just a little more tedious. Another site that I am on will refuse to accept posts that are not at least ten characters in length. When I first discovered that, I thought it was stupid and nannyish, but I begin to see the wisdom.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 8:08 AM on June 18, 2010


You could get with this, or you could get with that.
posted by klangklangston at 8:09 AM on June 18, 2010


But which is where it's at? Please advise.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 8:10 AM on June 18, 2010


(Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates posted "Don't favorite counts indicate 'This.'?"

No. And even if they did not everyone has favourite display turned on. Thanks again pb, favourite free Metafilter is awesome

jessamyn writes "Drive-thrus solve a bunch of problems for people including the 'I'm too lazy to get out of my car' problem."

Want to give people an appreciation for drive thrus? Make them responsible for 4 kids under the age of three who all need unstrapping and strapping into car seats at each destination and also require herding at the destination once unstrapped. They will never cut down drive thrus (or pay at the pump) again. I really wish we had a drive thru bank here.
posted by Mitheral at 8:14 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


I agree with the thread-clogging, unhelpful "this"-ing. Unless, as previously mentioned it is used as a comment opener.

I would like to add that the "." comment falls in the same category.

And I am cranky and overly sensitive this morning. <---that!
posted by haunted by Leonard Cohen at 8:15 AM on June 18, 2010


Not everything you see on 4chan started on 4chan.

Didn't say it started there. I said it came here from there. It may well have migrated to there from somewhere else before that.
posted by scalefree at 8:18 AM on June 18, 2010


Mitheral: Want to give people an appreciation for drive thrus? Make them responsible for 4 kids under the age of three who all need unstrapping and strapping into car seats at each destination and also require herding at the destination once unstrapped.

Some nights, I've actually driven miles out of my way to make a drive-through stop at a bank, store or fast food place because my kids are asleep in the back seat. In that situation, waking them up to go in and out of a store would have been a Very Bad Idea. And it's not like I'm going to leave them locked in the car while I pick up milk, eggs or a burrito at Taco Hell.

My kids go through a gallon of milk every couple of days, and they can't be left alone in the house at any time, even when they're asleep. Thank heaven for 24-hour supermarkets, and also for drive thrus.
posted by zarq at 8:23 AM on June 18, 2010


Didn't say it started there. I said it came here from there.

This kind of phenomenology is tricky stuff; "This." is generic and self-explanatory enough that it's hard not to imagine it being used in a lot of place, however sparsely, and I'm not sure there's that notable of a 4chan->mefi chain of causality to make it likely that something crossed that particular gap without a fairly compelling pile of evidence. LJ->mefi seems as likely and then some, for example, but it migrating in bits pieces from a melange of other sites/communities feels as likely to me as any other explanation in vacuum.

That said, I guess someone could try and do some work on this and contact the folks who first used "This." style responses on mefi and ask them about their understanding of the convention, their sense of where they picked it up, and their pre-mefi hangouts, and look for patterns that way.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:41 AM on June 18, 2010


First!
posted by quin at 8:44 AM on June 18, 2010 [3 favorites]


Recently I witnessed someone on a political site (with threaded comments) leaving responses like "+1" under comments that matched his ideology and like "-32" under comments that didn't. It was like he wanted to make his own, personal Digg or reddit and it was really annoying.
posted by brundlefly at 8:56 AM on June 18, 2010


I came here to tell you how deeply X's (art, music, poetry, small wooden boxes) affected me. I first encountered X's work in (kindergarten, elementary school, junior high, high school, college, grad school, other) and it profoundly affected my own (work, life, relationship, other). I will deeply miss X.
posted by fixedgear at 9:02 AM on June 18, 2010


I'm pretty sure I've "this"'d a few things. I do it because I'm irresistibly drawn to lovely arrangements of words. Repeating them is partly me saying "holy crap I love this and want to touch it", and partly like me nodding and smiling encouragingly at you in an in-person conversation. I don't mean it passive aggressively or boorishly, and I'm really sorry if that's how it reads. I'll stop doing it now.

I can appreciate and actually agree with the social norms/mefi conventions arguments. I've been here a long time, and I love it partly because it's not overrun with annoying cutesy-ness (don't get me started on "DH" for referring to a man you married), winky emoticons and 15-line signature files. I just wanted to mention that not everyone who uses a non-conventional conversational quirk is stumbling in drunk from 4chan, hoping to bring ruin on Metafilter. It would be nice if somehow we could maintain the norms without automatically assuming the worst of those who somehow missed the memo.
posted by donnagirl at 9:04 AM on June 18, 2010 [3 favorites]


I feel suitably chastened, I henceforth vow to never irritate anyone ever again. Except the cat, he's just mardy.
posted by arcticseal at 9:27 AM on June 18, 2010


Didn't say it started there. I said it came here from there.

What? What evidence do you have for that? I'd suspect LJ much more than 4chan. Without any real evidence either, I'm guessing the Metafilter/LJ intersection is bigger than the Metafilter/4chan intersection. But I could be wrong.
posted by kmz at 9:28 AM on June 18, 2010


This almost gleeful savaging of others, just because they follow different conventions or are ignorant is far from high level mark of human behavior.
... when again touched, as surely they will be, by the bigger assholes of their nature.
posted by y2karl at 9:28 AM on June 18, 2010


fee fi fo fum I sense a meme about to become
a mascot new
perhaps a shrew
no
'tis this with marks
punctuated few
posted by infini at 9:37 AM on June 18, 2010


For me, it's like
This.
and like
That.
and like
This.
an'
Up!
Ya dig?
posted by filthy light thief at 9:41 AM on June 18, 2010


I'm pretty sure I've "this"'d a few things. I do it because I'm irresistibly drawn to lovely arrangements of words. Repeating them is partly me saying "holy crap I love this and want to touch it", and partly like me nodding and smiling encouragingly at you in an in-person conversation.

I think I do the same thing for the same reasons. I've taken to saying stuff like "Well put," but I'm not at all sure if that's better or worse.
posted by brundlefly at 9:48 AM on June 18, 2010


"This" is the "ME TOO" and "AOL" of the 21st century.
posted by Justinian at 9:50 AM on June 18, 2010


Oh, wait. Is that was QFT stands for? I always thought it was for Quite F---ing True

*The More You Know*
posted by Karmakaze at 9:52 AM on June 18, 2010


I hereby confess to having used "This." Then someone whose word command shines even in this realm of the super articulate mentioned how the practice grates on their nerves, and I forswore it. We have long and complicated threads on many fascinating topics daily, and I'd just as soon not add to them if I have nothing moderately original of my own to say.

But I really like "." It doesn't clog a thread, because there is nothing to read, and to me it visually expresses a solemn silence, interrupted by occasional comments on the life of the perrson who died. And like zarq, I like the resemblance of the periods to the stones we members of the tribe put on the gravestones of those who died.
posted by bearwife at 9:53 AM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


First!
posted by quin


THIS!
posted by Devils Rancher at 9:56 AM on June 18, 2010


Brundlefly, I loathe "This." with a passion, but to me, "Well put." is ENTIRELY different. I applaud you for taking "This." in a different direction.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 9:58 AM on June 18, 2010


filthy light thief, are you channelling Eloise?
posted by orange swan at 10:57 AM on June 18, 2010


like me nodding and smiling encouragingly at you in an in-person conversation.

For me, imagine that "this" represents pointing at the comment with my left hand index finger, throwing the devil horns with my right hand, sticking out my tongue as far down as it'll go, and with scrunched-up eyes and high-pitched voice, screeching, "BITCHINNNNNN"
posted by Greg Nog at 11:14 AM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


Because sometimes a comment is particularly well written and a person likes to see it repeated.

Once I post this comment, I'll get to see Brandon Blatcher's awesome comment repeated! I'm so excited!!!
posted by notswedish at 11:16 AM on June 18, 2010


Oh boy, there it is! It's right above this comment, see? In the italics? Yeah, that's the one. Particularly well written, indeed.
posted by notswedish at 11:17 AM on June 18, 2010


I find it annoying and superfluous. Agree and go on like in improvisational theatre, if you like the idea, but don't break the flow by pausing(.) and pointing at your agreement.
posted by Free word order! at 11:31 AM on June 18, 2010


'Metafilter: "You're doing 'this' wrong."'
posted by xod at 12:16 PM on June 18, 2010


Agreed.

This. But I try to add a little commentary when I do this. Like this.
posted by coolguymichael at 12:16 PM on June 18, 2010


Why not simply add the commentary and leave off the annoying sentence fragment? The semantic content of your comment is the same without the annoying livejournal trappings.
posted by Justinian at 12:25 PM on June 18, 2010


Most of these lazy contributions (This - QFT - FTFY - Win - Fail) are pretty lame, but can on occasion be funny or appropriate. However, "First!" is an abomination. I can only hope that if it ever shows itself around these parts, the mods target it with extreme prejudice, and cries of "Don't you tell me I'm doing the Internets wrong!" are ignored. Because they most certainly are doing it wrong. Very wrong.

-----

I dislike "that is all" at the end of comments for the same reason. I think it's sometimes intended to mean, modestly, "and this small thing is all I have to say" but it sounds like, "And that is all there is to be said on the subject, so you all everybody can shut the fuck up now."

The first meaning is rarely if ever intended. That is all.
posted by BigSky at 12:37 PM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


Only Hodgman pull off "that is all." Everyone else just sounds like a dick. But when Hodgman does it, Oh! how I swoon.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 12:47 PM on June 18, 2010


since we're discussing this, so to speak, are we allowed/permitted LOL on Metafilter and its brethren sites?
posted by infini at 12:50 PM on June 18, 2010


It's allowed. That doesn't mean it's any good or that people won't wonder why in god's name you're using it, though.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:53 PM on June 18, 2010


controls.self.and.steps.away.from.keyboard.
posted by infini at 12:54 PM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


Given that most people don't read MetaTalk, applying community pressure via the grey seems like a losing proposition. On the other hand, asking people not to do crap like use "@username" on Metafilter tends to get deleted. How does one apply societal pressure via Metatalk on people who don't read Metatalk? Answer: you don't.
posted by Justinian at 1:00 PM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


This confusion over the meaning of favorites comes up so often, would it be worthwhile adding this?

posted by Whoever at 4:00 PM on June 18 [12 Bookmarks +] [3 People Agree] [!]

Or a thumbs up with a tally next to it?

I'm sure this suggestion has come up countless times before, too. I can see some appeal to leaving "favorites" ambiguous, but -- boy -- it sure seems to cause a ton of confusions.

I'm tried of posts that rehash this:

Angry Person: that was a fucking racist comment! Why did five people favorite it?

Someone else: when I favorite things, it doesn't necessarily mean that I agree with them.

As-long-as we have the ambiguous word "favorites," we're going to keep having to deal with this.
posted by grumblebee at 1:34 PM on June 18, 2010


This confusion over the meaning of favorites comes up so often, would it be worthwhile adding this?

posted by Whoever at 4:00 PM on June 18 [12 Bookmarks +] [3 People Agree] [!]

Or a thumbs up with a tally next to it?


The confusion does come up a lot, but I wouldn't be thrilled with a system that makes agreement more explicit. If you have something to say, you should say it and contribute. If you don't, then don't. While I like favorites just fine I'm uncomfortable with them as a measure of popularity or explicit agreement, so I would be uncomfortable with an explicit means of agreement that was not essentially narrative.
posted by OmieWise at 1:45 PM on June 18, 2010


My favorites are a bookmarking system, so if I feel like agreeing with someone, I will do that in actual words.
posted by cmgonzalez at 1:45 PM on June 18, 2010


I really truly hope that the MetaFilter continues to be without a way for people to vote "agree" on a comment without actually commenting. If you agree with something, use your words like a big boy. Favorites are ambiguous, and that's fine because adults can deal with ambiguity.
posted by stoneweaver at 1:51 PM on June 18, 2010


I'm sure this suggestion has come up countless times before, too.

It has, and no.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:52 PM on June 18, 2010


Don't favorite counts indicate "This."?

For god's sake not this.
posted by Chuckles at 2:00 PM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


This confusion over the meaning of favorites comes up so often, would it be worthwhile adding this?

posted by Whoever at 4:00 PM on June 18 [12 Bookmarks +] [3 People Agree] [!]

Or a thumbs up with a tally next to it?


If we're doing that, I'd like to request an "AGREE" button like that next to each paragraph of everyone's comments. Because sometimes, someone will say something I agree with in their first paragraph, but then also say something I disagree with in the next paragraph.

Oh, and I'd also like a chili cheeseburger.
posted by zarq at 2:03 PM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


If favorites are ambiguous, and I'm not suggesting they're not, why are they called "favorites"? Shouldn't they be labeled as "bookmarks" instead?

Apologies for not understanding favorites better. It does seem like that's the way they're used most often on the site. No offense intended to those who I've irreparably wronged with my description in the OP.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 2:11 PM on June 18, 2010


Favorites are called "favorites" because years ago Matt called the feature that when he launched it, taking the name from the bookmarking feature of IE. Which, hey, maybe not the best choice but that was the name for them and it stuck.

They remain ambiguous in usage; expressing support in some sense or another is certainly one of the major uses they get, but it's not a clearcut thing and folks are sometimes a bit touchy about assertions that favorites do x or mean y or indicate z because, well, it's ambiguous.

As it is, they're a tool that does different things for different people and has a variety of uses and varying usefulness as a result. We're pretty much okay with that ambiguity, and with the fact that there will probably always be random side arguments about it; that's a cost we can live with for a feature that otherwise seems useful to a lot of folks for a lot of different reasons.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:17 PM on June 18, 2010


When a comment has a vision and succeeds at it, I'm just gonna quote it and approve with, "Hitler."
posted by klangklangston at 2:19 PM on June 18, 2010


This doesn't bother me. "Fixed that for you." does.
posted by inturnaround at 2:26 PM on June 18, 2010


Favorites are called "favorites" because years ago Matt called the feature that when he launched it, taking the name from the bookmarking feature of IE. Which, hey, maybe not the best choice but that was the name for them and it stuck.

I believe he said something about choosing a slightly positive name to keep the tone positive. Kind of like "everybody needs a hug". In the end though, it doesn't read as slightly positive, it reads as roaring approval, and that is a problem.
posted by Chuckles at 2:32 PM on June 18, 2010


In the end though, it doesn't read as slightly positive, it reads as roaring approval, and that is a problem.

Some people see it that way. It is a problem we are stuck with, however. You can use Greasemonkey scripts to turn them off or change the word, but jiggering around with it is really not something that's going to happen.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 2:40 PM on June 18, 2010


This doesn't bother me. "Fixed that for you." does.

I wish we could ban "I see what you did there" meaning you understand a joke or a reference.

Also, prefacing one's comment with "Oh for fuck's sake" as a way to say "I'm so right and you're so wrong."
posted by Jaltcoh at 2:48 PM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


(Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates: “Don't favorite counts indicate ‘This.’?”

Look, you've been around long enough to know this isn't the case, right? Favorites don't mean agreement, and if they did I think it would probably be a good reason to get rid of them altogether. Shorthanding agreement stupids conversation.

Even so, favorites are there, and I end up using them. So I've been thinking about what exactly it means when I favorite. I've found I tend to favorite for the following reasons:
  • I think the comment / post is so diametrically opposed to my view of the world that I'd like to know more about how someone can possibly think such things.

  • I think the comment / post was outlandishly offensive.

  • I think the comment / post showed good sportsmanship in a contentious discussion.

  • I think the comment, which is arguing explicitly against my point of view, did a good job of calling me out and pointing out my inconsistencies.

  • I am tired of arguing about a subject, and therefore I indicate that the opposing side can have the last word by marking their comment with a favorite.

  • I think the comment / post contains unnoticed seeds of a deep and malicious nihilism which will probably end up costing our whole civilization dearly, and I would like to mark it so that I can ponder it further later.
  • If anyone discovers that I've favorited something they've written, well... I'm sorry. Or: congratulations. Or whatever. I guess you'd probably better just try to deal with it on your own.
    posted by koeselitz at 2:53 PM on June 18, 2010


    Look, you've been around long enough to know this isn't the case, right?

    I really don't know how to apologize enough. I tried once semi-sincerely. Don't push me to groveling/begging. It's not respecable.
    posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 3:01 PM on June 18, 2010


    And you favorited my post! Hurray! I'm chalking that up to #2: "I think the comment / post was outlandishly offensive."
    posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 3:07 PM on June 18, 2010


    I think the comment / post contains unnoticed seeds of a deep and malicious nihilism which will probably end up costing our whole civilization dearly, and I would like to mark it so that I can ponder it further later.

    I'm shooting for this one.
    posted by BigSky at 3:07 PM on June 18, 2010


    I wish we could ban "I see what you did there" meaning you understand a joke or a reference.

    The only acceptable use for this is to imply that someone intentionally made a joke, when they actually did not.
    posted by empath at 3:15 PM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


    Why do folks copy and past someone else's comment in a thread and then add a "This." or a "A million times this." to it?

    This is a reflection of how people talk in real life when they are in large groups. If you are having a discussion with a group of people regarding a topic, if it's a large enough group, most people are quiet most of the time while a few people are talking at a time. However, if something significant is said, and others feel that it's important enough to back, they will say something along the lines of, "Yes." Or, "Agreed" or something. People want to throw in their voice to add weight, even if they don't want to add anything further, simply because they want to acknowledge that there are others that think the point is well made, as well, and like that the discussion is being developed appropriately. It encourages the discussion in what they think is a healthy direction, even if they can't (or don't want) to carry the conversation themselves. They aren't necessarily being lazy.

    I think that some people see online dialogue about efficiency in data retention ("just google it, the answer is already out there!), or want everything that's said to be about advancing the cause of learning or something. Some people, though, see online dialogue about building relationships that reflect, on some level, what they experience in real life. Hence, people ask questions (to which answers may already exist) in part because they want to interact with others, and sometimes they give one-liners just simply to add their voice in approval.

    This bugs some people, but I think that's why things like this are done.
    posted by SpacemanStix at 3:19 PM on June 18, 2010


    As long as we're on the gripe train, I'm not a fan of starting posts with "So," or "Look,"--which seem to be lax enough in spoken English, and wholly unnecessary when writing. "Um" for comic effect is acceptable in moderation.
    posted by Admiral Haddock at 3:22 PM on June 18, 2010


    I should clarify that "So" strikes me as lax, whereas "Look" is aggressive, though I'm no fan of its use, in any event.
    posted by Admiral Haddock at 3:23 PM on June 18, 2010


    > "Um" for comic effect is acceptable in moderation.

    I find using "Um" for effect to be far more pernicious than "this". It has a caustic yet passive-aggressive element to it, and seems to be a weak way of calling someone stupid.
    posted by Burhanistan at 3:24 PM on June 18, 2010


    Eh. Favorites usually mean simple agreement. I use them pretty stingily as markers for comments I find funny enough to want to read again and again, but looking at how they're used, they generally track with "I agree" and I am kind of an outlier which is fine.
    posted by furiousthought at 3:28 PM on June 18, 2010


    But are we airing grievances? This is MetaTalk, of course we are. Here's mine, and I haven't seen it so much here lately, but I wanna make sure it is good and buried. It's links of this form:

    That reminds me of this movie and its themes of loss

    Ok, look. This complaint is not subjective. It is empirical. Linking shit is supposed to be helpful. But what you have done here is additional work that has the sole effect of making the reader do extra work to figure out what the fuck movie it is you're talking about, which you can't tell from mousing over and is the only reason anybody clicks on a "this movie" IMDb link. This just wastes time! In the future, please just type the title of the movie. If I'm dying to find out more about the particular title mentioned, I can always go to IMDb my own damn self and every memorable quote from Hardbodies 2 will be at my fingertips.

    Thank you. Thank you and goodnight!
    posted by furiousthought at 3:40 PM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


    I like to think of "favorites" as being dog biscuits and all of the commenters are dogs:

    You made me laugh out loud? Here, have a biscuit.
    You were being particularly clever? Here, have a biscuit.
    All the other dogs are being mean and you are being good? Here, have a biscuit.
    posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 3:43 PM on June 18, 2010 [4 favorites]


    I find using "Um" for effect to be far more pernicious than "this". It has a caustic yet passive-aggressive element to it, and seems to be a weak way of calling someone stupid.

    I agree. I meant the use of "um/uh" as a verbal placeholder (like "so..." at the start of a post), reflexively in one's comment. Like, uh, this! (comic gold). Not as in the "Um, like this?" response on AskMe, etc. (dickishness).

    People of the internet: if you are resorting to "Um, like this?" constructions to make someone else look stupid, you only show yourself to be mean and dumb.
    posted by Admiral Haddock at 3:43 PM on June 18, 2010


    'This.' sounds Canadian to me. US MeFites are advised to use #hellyeah.
    posted by lukemeister at 4:19 PM on June 18, 2010


    The only acceptable use for this is to imply that someone intentionally made a joke, when they actually did not.

    Huh? I've seen it many times and have never understood it that way.

    For instance, in the Gary Coleman obit thread, someone posted a lone period in a super small font. It was a clever joke that was barely perceptible. Someone else said "I see what you did there." I don't think there's any question that the joke was intentional.
    posted by Jaltcoh at 4:32 PM on June 18, 2010


    (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates: “I really don't know how to apologize enough. I tried once semi-sincerely. Don't push me to groveling/begging. It's not respecable.”

    Look, you've been around long enough to know that I'm an opinionated, loud-mouthed boor who always walks into a thread and starts shooting without previewing, right?
    posted by koeselitz at 5:10 PM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


    Jaltcoh: “I wish we could ban "I see what you did there" meaning you understand a joke or a reference.”

    Heh. Well, since you mention it, I actually came close to using this annoying jokey phrase recently. I was reading the fourth link of the recent post on clitoroplasty when this bit jumped out at me:

    “By the way, when Janet Green asked Poppas about these vibrators at a meeting, he cut her off”

    ... I almost wanted to say "I see what you did there," but I realized that it didn't really catch my sense of it. And when I couldn't figure out a succinct way of saying "wow, this is sort of a humorous turn of phrase, but in a way that is at the same time utterly tasteless," I just kind of scrapped the idea of mentioning it at all.
    posted by koeselitz at 5:19 PM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


    Look, you've been around long enough to know that I'm an opinionated, loud-mouthed boor who always walks into a thread and starts shooting without previewing, right?

    THIS.

    But, seriously, no, I haven't noticed.
    posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 6:15 PM on June 18, 2010


    It is a problem we are stuck with, however.

    I know, and since we've been able to turn off favourite counts it has become pretty livable all in all. I just thought a little more historical context was relevant. Of course I don't have a link for that context, so maybe it wasn't a very useful comment, but you know..
    posted by Chuckles at 6:18 PM on June 18, 2010


    Likewise, "this." isn't lazy, it's an indicator of agreement.

    Which is lazy. Indicating agreement is the lazy man's way of currying favor and accruing social currency. Grow some ideas of your own!
    posted by limeonaire at 6:18 PM on June 18, 2010 [1 favorite]


    Arriving late to the party to say, "LOL WUT?"
    posted by fuse theorem at 6:19 PM on June 18, 2010


    I find it vaguely lazy and would appreciate people using their words more.

    This.
    posted by deborah at 6:19 PM on June 18, 2010


    "This."

    Thus.
    posted by klangklangston at 7:28 PM on June 18, 2010


    Bollocks.
    posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:50 PM on June 18, 2010


    "sot of on the fringes"

    This.
    Describes me late on a Friday night after a particularly frazzling week of work.


    That indulgence aside "This." suffers because of how it is usually formatted. The quote referenced precedes the "This." and merely restates a previous comment. The reader may agree or disagree with the original sentiment and though internet reading isn't sequential "This." purposely interrupts the flow in order to reiterate a point but as typically formatted it addresses only those that disagree.

    "This." only amplifies as though volume is the same as quality. "This." doesn't distill or clarify or elaborate. "This." reinforces the notion that popular opinion, rather than reason, is an appropriate arbiter . "This." has had disastrous results in the past.
    Some examples: "This." is Geocentric. "This." is reflected in an all-to-recent DSM. War is "This.". "This." is what the cool kids are wearing. "This." arrests progress. Seriously, progress comes from people advocating ideas that aren't "This."
    You may be convinced of your "This.", I'm sure the people that disagree with you are also similarly convinced. "This." circumscribes.

    "This." is bullshit.

    I think I may have just disappeared up my own fundament there but I have given this some thought over many years and I think that the natural inclination to identify with one group as opposed to another is being increasingly amplified and the fruits harvested by the politicians and religious leaders and media outlets and anyone else that can benefit.
    Please forgive my 8:55 Friday rant.

    posted by vapidave at 8:53 PM on June 18, 2010 [2 favorites]


    Which is lazy. Indicating agreement is the lazy man's way of currying favor and accruing social currency. Grow some ideas of your own!

    I agree with "this." See what I did there? Um, what was I trying to say?
    posted by fixedgear at 6:03 AM on June 19, 2010


    Also, "this." is only three letters away from "hipster."
    posted by Free word order! at 1:16 PM on June 19, 2010


    That
    posted by y2karl at 4:27 PM on June 19, 2010


    ...there.
    posted by y2karl at 4:28 PM on June 19, 2010


    Uh
    posted by y2karl at 4:29 PM on June 19, 2010


    hyuck
    posted by y2karl at 4:30 PM on June 19, 2010


    The other thing
    posted by vapidave at 6:06 PM on June 19, 2010


    UbuRoivas: Word.
    posted by WCityMike at 6:27 PM on June 19, 2010


    ━━━━━━━━━┏┓
    ┏┫ ┏┓ ┏┓ ┣┓    ┃┃
    ┗┫   ┃   ┣┛ ┏━━┻┃
     ┃ ┗━━━┛ ┃  ┣━━ ┃
     ┗━━━┳━━━┛  ┣━━ ┃
     ┏━━▇▇▇━━━━━┻━━━┛
    posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 6:46 PM on June 19, 2010 [3 favorites]


    For the record, when your sole contribution to an obit thread is a single dot, some of us (I'll go as far as 'many', in fact) most certainly do think less of you.
    posted by genghis at 5:12 PM on June 22, 2010


    > For the record, when your sole contribution to an obit thread is a single dot, some of us (I'll go as far as 'many', in fact) most certainly do think less of you.

    I don't post dots, but I probably chafe more at people who presume to be the voice of the silent majority.
    posted by Burhanistan at 5:17 PM on June 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


    I like your dot okay.
    posted by jessamyn (staff) at 5:19 PM on June 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


    I probably chafe more at people who presume to be the voice of the silent majority.

    The silent majority aren't all that keen on it, either.
    posted by UbuRoivas at 5:44 PM on June 22, 2010 [2 favorites]


    For the record, when your sole contribution to an obit thread is a single dot, some of us (I'll go as far as 'many', in fact) most certainly do think less of you.

    Wut? That's news to me. Did you conduct some sort of poll when I wasn't paying attention? Also, when you see a big long wall of dots, do you stop and note each user name and "think less" of that person? Because when I see a big long page of dots, it makes me feel bereft.
    posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:05 AM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


    For the record, when your sole contribution to an obit thread is a single dot, some of us (I'll go as far as 'many', in fact) most certainly do think less of you.

    Huh? I mean, I personally don't do the dot thing, but why would you "think less of" someone for using the website's customary way to show respect for someone who just died?
    posted by Jaltcoh at 9:33 AM on June 23, 2010


    For the record, when your sole contribution to an obit thread is a single dot, some of us (I'll go as far as 'many', in fact) most certainly do think less of you.

    .
    posted by zarq at 9:47 AM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]

    I don't post dots, but I probably chafe more at people who presume to be the voice of the silent majority.
    Yes, because "some" and "many" are the same thing as "most".
    posted by genghis at 10:57 AM on June 23, 2010


    The lurkers have all MeMailed me to say that genghis is right. So that settles it.
    posted by SpiffyRob at 10:58 AM on June 23, 2010


     
    posted by y2karl at 11:17 AM on June 23, 2010


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