Tags being included in titles — titles tags SEO January 12, 2011 5:32 AM   Subscribe

What's with the first three tags being included in the title of every AskMe post? For example, this thread's page title is "My Friend's Lost Story - loststories jealousy forgiveness | Ask MetaFilter".

To be honest, I don't much care for it — it smacks of the sketchy SEO you see on less reputable pages — but mainly I'm just curious. My apologies if I missed a memo where this was explained.
posted by Johnny Assay to Uptime at 5:32 AM (46 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

Mathowie said it here
posted by deezil at 5:49 AM on January 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


And it was sorta hidden there to begin with, but I remembered it, so there's your link.
posted by deezil at 5:53 AM on January 12, 2011


Yeah I explained there and there are some follow-ups. It's new and we are considering other options like fewer keywords, brackets around them, and hiding from members (not sure if that breaks Google guidelines).
posted by mathowie (staff) at 5:55 AM on January 12, 2011


I guess Google really is broken, like all those articles have been saying.
posted by smackfu at 6:01 AM on January 12, 2011 [2 favorites]


It makes me sad like this: :-(

But, at the same time, Mefi getting its rightful page views instead of awful copiers makes me happy like this: :-)
posted by meese at 6:04 AM on January 12, 2011


And the idea of Mefi not making enough money makes me nervous like this: :-O
posted by meese at 6:05 AM on January 12, 2011


Relatedly, the formatting of the "best answer" highlighting looks off here - for me the highlighting extends partially into the "Share" links for Twitter and Facebook. I'm on Firefox with the professional white background.
posted by exogenous at 6:09 AM on January 12, 2011


and clowns look like this: <:o)
posted by ShawnString at 6:10 AM on January 12, 2011


I think it's ugly and distracting, but if MetaFilter needs it to stay solvent, I can deal.

Klingons look like this: }}}:-(>
posted by Faint of Butt at 6:24 AM on January 12, 2011


The recent thread Can Google beat spam addressed the apparent decline in Google's ability to downrank spammers' copied sites.
posted by TheophileEscargot at 6:53 AM on January 12, 2011


I didn't notice it until now. Now that it's seen, it looks useful because it helps define what the tread is about. LIKE USEFUL CHANGEISGOOD.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:00 AM on January 12, 2011


I noticed that on one of my questions, and for a split second I thought I'd gotten the title field and the tags field switched around when writing it up.

I did that once in another forum, and started a thread asking about my cat's constant nighttime yowling, and the title of the thread ended up being something like fuckingcat shutthefuckup deargod thisiswhyyouregettingneutered.
posted by Metroid Baby at 7:09 AM on January 12, 2011 [13 favorites]


Has this been dropped? Because I'm not seeing it in any AskMe post this morning. If not, it should probably mention underneath the tags field that the first three will show up in the title.
posted by mediareport at 7:16 AM on January 12, 2011


mediareport: urls are not <title>s.
posted by boo_radley at 7:18 AM on January 12, 2011


Yeah, we should have it for comments too. snark snowflake ponylove
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 7:19 AM on January 12, 2011 [2 favorites]


Oh, you mean the top of the browser window. Got it. That's not very noticeable. Do the tags show up in the RSS feed? If they're not in the URLs or on the actual page then it's pretty minor. Still, "Your first three tags will show up at the end of your title at the top of the browser window" would be bending over backwards to be kind, I suppose.
posted by mediareport at 7:19 AM on January 12, 2011


I think it's ugly and distracting, but if MetaFilter needs it to stay solvent, I can deal.

This pretty much sums up my reaction. Thanks for the explanation, and consider my complaint cheerfully withdrawn.
posted by Johnny Assay at 7:20 AM on January 12, 2011


Got it, thanks, boo_radley; the confusion came because the posting page uses "Headline/Title" to describe the field that becomes the end of the link and the question title. "the title of every AskMe post" means something pretty specific here, unless you mention you're talking about HTML attributes.
posted by mediareport at 7:22 AM on January 12, 2011


If they're not in the URLs or on the actual page then it's pretty minor.

The reason I noticed it is that the "post to Facebook" links pull in the title so you get that junk in there. Also bookmarks use the title.

I think it would better with some formatting, like:

My Friend's Lost Story (loststories, jealousy, forgiveness) | Ask MetaFilter

than:

My Friend's Lost Story - loststories jealousy forgiveness | Ask MetaFilter
posted by smackfu at 7:43 AM on January 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


I don't know why I was so shocked by it, but the possibility of Metafilter actually losing you guys money makes me feel really bad. I know I disabled ads; would it help if we all turned them back on? Is your ad revenue determined by page views or clicks?
posted by estlin at 7:45 AM on January 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


I don't know why I was so shocked by it, but the possibility of Metafilter actually losing you guys money makes me feel really bad. I know I disabled ads; would it help if we all turned them back on?

Also addressed in the thread linked above! Here's cortex's take:
Oof. Suddenly I feel bad about aggressively blocking ads.

Don't. Our ad revenue comes from the anonymous horde of non-members reaching the site via search engines and other off-site links. Our revenue is down some for the same reasons it ever went up: passive income produced as if at a whim by the force of nature that is the internet ad economy. You blocking ads on the site is the fluttering of a single tassel on the sleeve of the jacket of the cowboy scrabbling to stay saddled on a great big nasty bucking bronco named AdWords.

Like Ritchie says, the most important thing a mefite can do to help metafilter thrive is to participate here in good faith, to engage this place thoughtfully; post, comment, help the community be the interesting and vibrant place it is.
posted by librarylis at 7:52 AM on January 12, 2011


Well, what about a bake sale?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:02 AM on January 12, 2011 [2 favorites]


And the idea of Mefi not making enough money makes me nervous like this: :-O

I would gladly pay yearly for Mefi. I'm sure others would as well. I understand I could just donate, but if Mefi is ever looking at hard times, I'm sure the money is there for the asking.
posted by odinsdream at 8:17 AM on January 12, 2011 [8 favorites]


Well, what about a bake sale?

I'll bring a plate of baked beans!
posted by zachlipton at 8:18 AM on January 12, 2011


Guys I'm pretty sure we need to enter the Battle of the Bands in order to win enough money to buy back our website.
posted by shakespeherian at 8:24 AM on January 12, 2011 [5 favorites]


The reason I noticed it is that the "post to Facebook" links pull in the title so you get that junk in there.

It shouldn't be doing that anymore. It did for the first 24 hours of our Facebook test or so, but we started looking for the Facebook User-Agent that grabs the title and nixing the tags for it.
posted by pb (staff) at 8:30 AM on January 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


Aren't you clever!
posted by smackfu at 8:42 AM on January 12, 2011


Aren't you clever!

No, not really, bake sales have going on since the dawn of time.

Now, a bake sale/strip show/coding contest would be new.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:47 AM on January 12, 2011


Finally, a way to draw interest to my PENIS ENLARGEMENT LIVE TEEN SEX posts.
posted by klangklangston at 8:48 AM on January 12, 2011


"Guys I'm pretty sure we need to enter the Battle of the Bands in order to win enough money to buy back our website."

I was told that we needed to beat Camp Boingboing in a series of Native American themed games.
posted by klangklangston at 8:50 AM on January 12, 2011


I'm not seeing it, even when I log out. Yes, I'm looking at the title.
posted by norm at 8:53 AM on January 12, 2011


It's only on AskMe in the window title bar, is that where you are looking?
posted by smackfu at 8:58 AM on January 12, 2011


This thread makes me want to donate. I searched for links to donate, and found this. That has a dead amazon honor link and a paypal link for the server upgrade. Then I found a paypal link hidden at the bottom of the About page. I'm sad the amazon honor link is no good because I really don't like paypal, but anyway, how about making a donate link visible somewhere a little more obvious? That might encourage people to do more random off-the-cuff donations.
posted by Joh at 9:14 AM on January 12, 2011


I suggest a strip coding contest. Held as far away from the baked goods as possible, because ew.
posted by nebulawindphone at 9:17 AM on January 12, 2011


klangklangston: "I was told that we needed to beat Camp Boingboing in a series of Native American themed games."

Double secret probation?!?!
posted by boo_radley at 9:20 AM on January 12, 2011


It's only on AskMe in the window title bar, is that where you are looking?

Ah, got it. That's not even readable in my tabbed browser unless I do a mouse hover.
posted by norm at 9:39 AM on January 12, 2011


I wish people were clamoring to donate to me. PayPal link is in the profile, people!
posted by cjorgensen at 9:57 AM on January 12, 2011


That's not even readable in my tabbed browser unless I do a mouse hover.

Yeah, it much more noticeable in Firefox since it shows the tab title as the window title and shows a lot more of it.
posted by smackfu at 9:59 AM on January 12, 2011


Man, the SEO wars require some weird ugly stuff.
posted by Artw at 10:24 AM on January 12, 2011


Time for us to each write a series of detailed, keyword-heavy AskMeFi questions about mesothelioma. Let's do it for our country website.
posted by Asparagirl at 10:42 AM on January 12, 2011


I did that once in another forum, and started a thread asking about my cat's constant nighttime yowling, and the title of the thread ended up being something like fuckingcat shutthefuckup deargod thisiswhyyouregettingneutered.

And then there is technologically deficient me, who managed to do that right here in MetaTalk. How embarrassing.
posted by cheapskatebay at 10:42 AM on January 12, 2011


I wish people were clamoring to donate to me.

I'm willing to donate a teenager to you. Where can I find your address?!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:46 AM on January 12, 2011


Still, "Your first three tags will show up at the end of your title at the top of the browser window" would be bending over backwards to be kind, I suppose.

Yeah, and it would become redundantly uninformative after each user posted exactly one thread (assuming posters actually read New Post pages, eh) so I think it's easy enough to just let that revelation happen on its own. Anyway, they can be edited after the fact if poster is unhappy with the three title-visible tags.

Now just to get people to type What's with the first three tags being included in the title of every AskMe post? in the search box instead of the New MetaTalk Thread page.
posted by carsonb at 10:54 AM on January 12, 2011


To me the added tags in the title make the site feel like it has a touch of Tourettes.

Is it only in Ask because that's where most of the search traffic lands?
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:32 AM on January 12, 2011


> how about making a donate link visible somewhere a little more obvious?

Yes, please. It's almost time for my annual mefiversary donation, and I always end up contacting the mods to ask how to make a piddly little contribution that probably doesn't even cover the cost of their time to reply.
posted by Quietgal at 11:59 AM on January 12, 2011


odinsdream writes "I would gladly pay yearly for Mefi. I'm sure others would as well. I understand I could just donate, but if Mefi is ever looking at hard times, I'm sure the money is there for the asking."

I sure that some members would be put off or just let their membership expire is annual fees were introduced; not that their has ever been any indication that annual fees are planned.
posted by Mitheral at 4:02 PM on January 12, 2011


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