I loved the Post, I just didn't have an opinion on it! February 7, 2011 5:40 PM   Subscribe

How many FPPs have more favorites than comments?

I got to thinking about it when I saw that my last FPP has gathered 6 favorites, but only 3 comments over the first 24 hours or so (which covers most of the activity on most of the FPPs, I think).

I guess this sort of thing would be trivial for someone well-acquainted with the dark arts of infodumpery. If someone wants to run a script, it might also be fun to see which FPPs have the largest favorites-comments differentials (in absolute terms; in percentage terms).
posted by vidur to MetaFilter-Related at 5:40 PM (55 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

this one
posted by clavdivs at 5:41 PM on February 7, 2011 [2 favorites]


this one

Not anymore.
posted by John Cohen at 5:42 PM on February 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


Most of the most favorited FPPs of all time have a lot more favorites than comments.

This is true of AskMe questions too. Here's one with almost 10 times as many favorites as comments. This has more than 10 times as many favorites as comments. Same thing here.

This might have the biggest favorites-to-answers ratio of an AskMe question: about 18 times as many favorites as comments. 393 favorites ... 21 answers.
posted by John Cohen at 5:49 PM on February 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


It's not that uncommon. That's my personal measuring stick for a good FPP, actually.
posted by dobbs at 6:03 PM on February 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


Seven!
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 6:28 PM on February 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


John Cohen: " This might have the biggest favorites-to-answers ratio of an AskMe question: about 18 times as many favorites as comments. 393 favorites ... 21 answers."

What's the average ratio of comments to favorites?

vidur: " How many FPPs have more favorites than comments? "

It's happened on a bunch of my posts. I think there should be an in-site term for the phenomenon. :)
posted by zarq at 6:45 PM on February 7, 2011


3 favorites ÷ 0 comments = INFINITELY GOOD POST OH SHI-
posted by Rhaomi at 6:46 PM on February 7, 2011


I've pulled that off a couple times I think. Seconding the need for a name for this.
posted by marxchivist at 6:47 PM on February 7, 2011


Rhaomi: "73 favorites ÷ 0 comments = INFINITELY GOOD POST OH SHI-"

"Divide by Cheese Error. Redo from Start."
posted by zarq at 6:48 PM on February 7, 2011 [5 favorites]


Thanks for the links, John. AskMe is not meant for discussions, so I can understand that folks would bookmark an interesting question but not post an answer to it.

BTW, I don't meant to imply that it is somehow "weird" that people would favorite an FPP on the Blue but not comment on it. I just found it curious, and thought it would make for an interesting infodump request, and it would be fun to look at ratios, extreme scenarios (only comments, no favorites) etc.

On preview: Yes, this needs to have a name.
posted by vidur at 6:52 PM on February 7, 2011


referential needs: + [+] - [!] = [add to favorites] Favorite removed!/ [remove from favorites]
posted by clavdivs at 6:59 PM on February 7, 2011


I've used "referenceability" to describe the sort of I'll-come-back-to-this nature of some questions and posts that by my reckoning drives much of the more-faves-than-comments phenomenon; things that have some perceived reference value aren't always things that have some obvious conversational hook, and so you get people faving them as a thing to come back to without necessarily saying anything at the time.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:04 PM on February 7, 2011


A shame there isn't a way to determine how many of those sorts of posts one has automatically. I want to know, but don't feel like going through my history.
posted by zarq at 7:17 PM on February 7, 2011


My most recent FPP has a few more favourites than comments, but fewer than 1% of those comments explicitly refer to the main YouTube link in the FPP. (Well, just one comment explicitly refers to it. I was hoping it would stay at zero because I don't think I've ever seen an undeleted thread work out that way before.)

I have no idea how many of the favourites were made so that people could access the link later. I'm guessing somewhere between a fair chunk and rather a lot.
posted by maudlin at 7:28 PM on February 7, 2011


This has a pretty high ratio: 193 favorites - 15 comments.
posted by unliteral at 7:33 PM on February 7, 2011


Oooh! Oooh! I had one! I was a little disappointed at the lack of discussion, but the link was to a really long series of articles and it was satisfying to see people were interested in it.
posted by Trochanter at 7:34 PM on February 7, 2011


I propose we call it a Whoopie-Do.
posted by cashman at 7:34 PM on February 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


How about 'favnocom' - bonus, it has no returns on google.
posted by unliteral at 7:37 PM on February 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


Skimmed and did a rough count. I have about 40, i think. Out of 205. Probably says something negative about my posting style.
posted by zarq at 7:40 PM on February 7, 2011


Call it a "that and 50 cents will get you a bag of chips".
posted by Burhanistan at 7:51 PM on February 7, 2011


zarq: "A shame there isn't a way to determine how many of those sorts of posts one has automatically. I want to know, but don't feel like going through my history."

I don't think it's a very useful metric. I've made fifty posts; of those, twenty-four have more favorites than comments and twenty-six don't. But the way they shake out into those two categories is a little counterintuitive -- according to that ratio, this nearly dead post on Off Planet Films (8 favorites, 2 comments) and this one about cult film We Are The Strange (15 favorites, 5 comments) are both "better" than the Lost finale live thread (123 favorites, 1195 comments) and the Pixar/Toy Story 3 one (99 favorites, 227 comments). I think it's weird to count comments as a negative quality that way, especially since the ratio you get out of it fluctuates wildly the fewer there are (as this thread demonstrated early on).

The most interesting numbers game in my mind is still the index method lifted from Wired and discussed (and analyzed) in the last big Infodump thread. It feels less susceptible to the kinds of statistical unpredictability you get working with rawer numbers. It's also interesting how it seems to approach a limit, or at least get much harder to raise with each increase.
posted by Rhaomi at 7:56 PM on February 7, 2011 [2 favorites]


Hmmm, the genius index thing is interesting.

In the meantime...

Which posts in MetaFilter have the highest favorites/comments ratio?

(Six of the top ten by the same poster? Huh.)

Doesn't include posts with no comments. You can do the usual filtering by date/user/site on the main infodumpster page.
posted by Combustible Edison Lighthouse at 8:23 PM on February 7, 2011


Woo-hoo, I did this once! My FPP on the Lost Boys of Sudan has 12 comments and 28 favorites.
posted by bluedaisy at 8:51 PM on February 7, 2011


Clearly what we need here is a scatterplot.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:54 PM on February 7, 2011


(Six of the top ten by the same poster? Huh.)

netbros is the Michael Jordan of referenceability/favnocomicity.
posted by vidur at 9:12 PM on February 7, 2011


Question: How many Metatalk threads have goals of sending viewers to their own FPP?
posted by hal_c_on at 9:16 PM on February 7, 2011


hal_c_on, I'm sorry if my framing made it look that way to you. That was not my intention. I'll be glad if the mods could remove the hyperlink.
posted by vidur at 9:21 PM on February 7, 2011


hal_c_on: "Question: How many Metatalk threads have goals of sending viewers to their own FPP?"

Who cares? What difference does it make? Vidur posed an interesting question. Why not simply assume good faith and take it at face value?
posted by zarq at 9:27 PM on February 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


netbros is the Michael Jordan of referenceability/favnocomicity.
I approve of this comment word use.
posted by unliteral at 9:34 PM on February 7, 2011


netbros: keeper of the dread Favnocomicon
posted by Rhaomi at 9:44 PM on February 7, 2011


Dudes, netbros is a proprietary algorithm script.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:09 PM on February 7, 2011


That's my personal measuring stick for a good FPP, actually.

Uh … why?
posted by kenko at 10:24 PM on February 7, 2011



Clearly what we need here is a scatterplot.


I love it when you talk statistcs.

that is statistics, right?
posted by Sparx at 10:25 PM on February 7, 2011


The most interesting numbers game in my mind is still the index method lifted from Wired and discussed (and analyzed) in the last big Infodump thread. It feels less susceptible to the kinds of statistical unpredictability you get working with rawer numbers. It's also interesting how it seems to approach a limit, or at least get much harder to raise with each increase.

Power law curve.

Also, is there a way to run that number for all of metafilter?
posted by empath at 11:20 PM on February 7, 2011


I was one of your commenters, and let's be frank I waffled on for a couple of sentences to say very little (as is me wont); I do that because I've posted a fair few things that have garnered their fair share of faves but few comments. My presumption is that with the topics being fairly obscure to the general run of users here, people are enjoying something they wre previously not too aware of but don't want to say something just for the sake of it. Which as I say, doesn't stop me (being as I only know about Pakistan from what you read etc.), but then I sense a comment is always welcome when you've gone to the trouble to post.
posted by Abiezer at 2:30 AM on February 8, 2011


One of my recent AskMes was linked by NotMartha. It now has 5 comments and 84 favorites. But seriously, none of you NotMartha readers know of any clothing-upcycling blogs?
posted by specialagentwebb at 5:17 AM on February 8, 2011


the most favorited FPPs of all time

Hey! Whoa! I made that list, and, against all odds, it was a post about music from Botswana, fer chrissake! Who'd a thunk it?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:28 AM on February 8, 2011


I thought this was a very frequent phenomenon with my posts, but I only count 22 out of the 164 that have more favorites than comments. At one point I asked pb if he could include favorites for posts of the Recent Activity page just to be able to compare this there.

(I can't remember when favorites were introduced, but based on favoriting patterns, some substantial percentage of my posts must have been before that date.)
posted by OmieWise at 5:32 AM on February 8, 2011


That's my personal measuring stick for a good FPP, actually.

I've got my own system:

1 favorite or less: Struck out

2-3 favorites: Pop-up fly

4-5 favorites: Sacrifice fly

6-7 favorites: Sacrifice bunt

8-9 favorites: Beat the throw to first base

10-15 favorites: Infield single

16-20 favorites: Round first, but held on base

20-30 favorites: Double

30-40 favorites: Triple

40-50 favorites: Home run

50-60 favorites: Home run with men on base

60-70 favorites: Game-winning home run

70-80 favorites: Playoff berth-clinching home run

80-90 favorites: Playoff home run

90-100 favorites: World Series home run

100+ favorirtes: World Series-clinching home run
posted by Joe Beese at 6:46 AM on February 8, 2011


Unclench, man. Favorites are nothing wrapped in emptiness.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:35 AM on February 8, 2011


It's happened on a bunch of my posts. I think there should be an in-site term for the phenomenon.

I always see it as "Achievement Unlocked".
posted by quin at 7:44 AM on February 8, 2011


Whoa, more than half of my FPPs have more favorites than comments. I should even it out with some Wikileaks SLYTs.
posted by theodolite at 8:14 AM on February 8, 2011


1400 comments, 33 favorites.
posted by empath at 8:19 AM on February 8, 2011


grar, favourites suck
posted by terrapin at 11:10 AM on February 8, 2011


That's my personal measuring stick for a good FPP, actually.

Uh … why?


Because I prefer posts that *don't* spark conversation but that people like. It seems to me that the posts that encourage conversation are soliciting opinion and (usually) offering opinion deeper than "this is neat". To me, MeFi is best used for "this is neat" and worst used for "what do you think about this?" The more conversation is encouraged by FPP content, the further the post moves from one to the other.

empath's link just above this one is the kind of post I hate on Mefi and represents, in my mind, a watering down of the site. Seeing that it has 1400 comments and only 33 favorites doesn't surprise me in the least. The news of balloon boy was everywhere when it happened. It didn't need to be on Mefi--I don't come here to see stuff that's everywhere. I come here because I expect all that crap to be filtered out.

But... I recognize people use Metafilter for different things...
posted by dobbs at 5:30 AM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


empath's link just above this one is the kind of post I hate on Mefi and represents, in my mind, a watering down of the site. Seeing that it has 1400 comments and only 33 favorites doesn't surprise me in the least.

When I posted it, it was a little 'news of the weird' link and not on all the tv networks.
posted by empath at 5:40 AM on February 9, 2011


Quite some time ago, in another datawankery thread, we had a look at which tags are associated with the most favorites per post, and which are associated with the most comments per post.

It's interesting to see the qualitative difference in which tags show up on one list vs. the other. This is probably worth running again, since 18 months has passed since I did it originally. Anybody want to see that?
posted by FishBike at 5:46 AM on February 9, 2011


From today: 5 favorites, no comments (for now, anyway).

I sometimes favorite without commenting; sometimes because I just want to bookmark the post for later, sometimes because I liked the post but for whatever reason don't want to say so in a comment, sometimes for no apparent reason. So I am not surprised that others do the same.
posted by TedW at 6:51 AM on February 9, 2011


Anybody want to see that?

Heck yeah.

You know what might be interesting to look at? The distribution of faving vs. commenting activity on a post, in terms of volume over time, as two lines on the same graph.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:50 AM on February 9, 2011 [1 favorite]


147.79: meth [3547 comments on 24 posts)

This made me laugh for some reason.
posted by empath at 7:53 AM on February 9, 2011


From today: 5 favorites, no comments (for now, anyway).
8 for 1 now, but that's a rad favnocom (yes, it's on google now).
posted by unliteral at 2:27 PM on February 9, 2011


This is probably worth running again, since 18 months has passed since I did it originally. Anybody want to see that?

Yes, please!
posted by vidur at 2:51 PM on February 9, 2011


Ok, so here's an up-to-date zeitgeisty whatnot (as of the latest infodump, anyway) of the top 20 tags, first by average number of favorites per post that used them:

MeFi
63.91: frugal [703 favorites on 11 posts)
52.59: Henson [894 favorites on 17 posts)
52.47: emulation [787 favorites on 15 posts)
52.36: audiobook [576 favorites on 11 posts)
45.43: cartoonnetwork [636 favorites on 14 posts)
44.78: 90s [1030 favorites on 23 posts)
42.67: macro [640 favorites on 15 posts)
41.83: dungeons [502 favorites on 12 posts)
41.50: mlyt [664 favorites on 16 posts)
39.55: feynman [435 favorites on 11 posts)
38.73: is [426 favorites on 11 posts)
35.90: billwatterson [359 favorites on 10 posts)
35.24: indiegames [599 favorites on 17 posts)
34.43: gladwell [482 favorites on 14 posts)
34.10: freesoftware [341 favorites on 10 posts)
34.08: dune [443 favorites on 13 posts)
33.08: stephenfry [827 favorites on 25 posts)
32.79: latenight [459 favorites on 14 posts)
32.50: connections [325 favorites on 10 posts)
32.40: infocom [324 favorites on 10 posts)

AskMe
87.28: introduction [1571 favorites on 18 posts)
86.10: metafilterhistory [1722 favorites on 20 posts)
66.71: materialism [934 favorites on 14 posts)
50.46: luxury [1312 favorites on 26 posts)
45.27: sandwiches [679 favorites on 15 posts)
42.79: useful [599 favorites on 14 posts)
41.64: simplify [458 favorites on 11 posts)
41.40: staples [414 favorites on 10 posts)
40.72: thriller [733 favorites on 18 posts)
40.64: chef [1341 favorites on 33 posts)
40.40: frugality [606 favorites on 15 posts)
39.19: passion [1646 favorites on 42 posts)
36.91: slowcooker [812 favorites on 22 posts)
35.83: perfectionism [645 favorites on 18 posts)
35.12: frugal [2353 favorites on 67 posts)
32.97: salad [1088 favorites on 33 posts)
32.73: adulthood [491 favorites on 15 posts)
32.52: non-fiction [1073 favorites on 33 posts)
32.31: kindness [420 favorites on 13 posts)
32.05: stew [609 favorites on 19 posts)

MeTa
28.50: marriage [285 favorites on 10 posts)
21.58: life [259 favorites on 12 posts)
21.40: rape [214 favorites on 10 posts)
16.80: shopping [168 favorites on 10 posts)
15.22: books [411 favorites on 27 posts)
13.64: memes [191 favorites on 14 posts)
13.40: metafilterhistory [1152 favorites on 86 posts)
13.36: bestof [294 favorites on 22 posts)
11.56: wiki [451 favorites on 39 posts)
11.24: suicide [191 favorites on 17 posts)
10.18: secretquonsar [112 favorites on 11 posts)
9.76: ask [244 favorites on 25 posts)
9.23: author [120 favorites on 13 posts)
9.17: awesome [220 favorites on 24 posts)
8.94: infodump [152 favorites on 17 posts)
8.63: datawankery [138 favorites on 16 posts)
8.42: reading [160 favorites on 19 posts)
8.00: movies [128 favorites on 16 posts)
7.90: list [237 favorites on 30 posts)
7.86: holiday [110 favorites on 14 posts)

Music
43.00: mefi [602 favorites on 14 posts)
31.90: metafilter [638 favorites on 20 posts)
26.80: parody [402 favorites on 15 posts)
25.55: zombie [281 favorites on 11 posts)
20.83: sex [250 favorites on 12 posts)
20.79: nsfw [395 favorites on 19 posts)
16.44: bgm [1118 favorites on 68 posts)
13.18: chiptune [145 favorites on 11 posts)
12.60: tuba [126 favorites on 10 posts)
12.25: humor [147 favorites on 12 posts)
11.80: hallelujah [354 favorites on 30 posts)
11.05: stevegoldberg [221 favorites on 20 posts)
10.94: violin [339 favorites on 31 posts)
10.18: trombone [112 favorites on 11 posts)
10.17: French [122 favorites on 12 posts)
10.00: nintendo [120 favorites on 12 posts)
9.70: 8bit [97 favorites on 10 posts)
9.57: requests [201 favorites on 21 posts)
9.56: disco [172 favorites on 18 posts)
9.50: ska [95 favorites on 10 posts)

... and then by average number of comments:

MeFi
630.75: VP [7569 comments on 12 posts)
556.69: Sarah [7237 comments on 13 posts)
471.85: Election2008 [12268 comments on 26 posts)
396.64: palin [19832 comments on 50 posts)
375.55: sarahpalin [14271 comments on 38 posts)
328.95: Biden [6250 comments on 19 posts)
292.71: RNC [9074 comments on 31 posts)
285.71: vicepresident [6857 comments on 24 posts)
257.90: McCain [21148 comments on 82 posts)
224.67: ipad [5392 comments on 24 posts)
212.83: crystal [2554 comments on 12 posts)
195.09: healthcarereform [2146 comments on 11 posts)
190.18: finale [2092 comments on 11 posts)
181.61: barack [3269 comments on 18 posts)
181.08: okcupid [2173 comments on 12 posts)
176.18: LOCK [1938 comments on 11 posts)
174.33: prop8 [3138 comments on 18 posts)
174.29: evangelicals [2963 comments on 17 posts)
172.46: wikileaks [8278 comments on 48 posts)
168.25: marriageequality [2019 comments on 12 posts)

AskMe
66.85: metafilterhistory [1337 comments on 20 posts)
66.05: nicknames [1387 comments on 21 posts)
59.50: sexualharassment [595 comments on 10 posts)
57.92: insults [753 comments on 13 posts)
54.64: manly [601 comments on 11 posts)
53.40: comeback [534 comments on 10 posts)
50.83: arguments [1169 comments on 23 posts)
50.17: cry [602 comments on 12 posts)
50.00: materialism [700 comments on 14 posts)
49.77: nickname [647 comments on 13 posts)
48.64: lovesongs [681 comments on 14 posts)
48.25: adultery [772 comments on 16 posts)
48.17: politeness [1108 comments on 23 posts)
47.50: grammer [570 comments on 12 posts)
47.42: homophobia [901 comments on 19 posts)
46.79: masculinity [655 comments on 14 posts)
46.60: affair [1165 comments on 25 posts)
46.00: ignorance [736 comments on 16 posts)
45.49: cheating [6505 comments on 143 posts)
45.30: atheism [2401 comments on 53 posts)

MeTa
374.40: ui [3744 comments on 10 posts)
292.92: sexism [11131 comments on 38 posts)
214.00: hate [2782 comments on 13 posts)
212.30: bigotry [2123 comments on 10 posts)
210.30: rape [2103 comments on 10 posts)
178.00: wtf [2848 comments on 16 posts)
177.29: boyzone [3014 comments on 17 posts)
177.09: fat [1948 comments on 11 posts)
167.60: invites [1676 comments on 10 posts)
160.44: us [2567 comments on 16 posts)
159.92: obituary [1919 comments on 12 posts)
159.70: respect [1597 comments on 10 posts)
157.52: survey [3308 comments on 21 posts)
151.38: racism [5147 comments on 34 posts)
151.12: infodump [2569 comments on 17 posts)
149.69: datawankery [2395 comments on 16 posts)
143.38: pileon [1864 comments on 13 posts)
138.45: secretquonsar [1523 comments on 11 posts)
137.59: religion [6742 comments on 49 posts)
137.27: international [2059 comments on 15 posts)

Music
33.92: suggestion [407 comments on 12 posts)
29.86: mefi [418 comments on 14 posts)
29.59: mefimusic [1095 comments on 37 posts)
24.38: challenge [902 comments on 37 posts)
21.70: metafilter [434 comments on 20 posts)
17.92: album [215 comments on 12 posts)
17.82: zombie [196 comments on 11 posts)
15.93: parody [239 comments on 15 posts)
15.00: tips [195 comments on 13 posts)
14.11: nsfw [268 comments on 19 posts)
13.10: birthday [131 comments on 10 posts)
12.67: sex [152 comments on 12 posts)
12.47: hallelujah [374 comments on 30 posts)
12.38: bgm [842 comments on 68 posts)
12.18: gear [134 comments on 11 posts)
12.07: VelvetUnderground [483 comments on 40 posts)
11.90: requests [250 comments on 21 posts)
11.80: performance [118 comments on 10 posts)
11.77: vocalsonly [153 comments on 13 posts)
11.37: recording [591 comments on 52 posts)
As before, a tag has to be used on at least 10 different posts before it will be considered for this list.
posted by FishBike at 3:47 PM on February 9, 2011 [2 favorites]


Also, is there a way to run that number for all of metafilter?

Yes! The "Genius Index" for all of MetaFilter is 225, which is to say, there have been 225 posts and comments with 225 or more favorites. That's higher than any individual user's highest index here of course, but not staggeringly so.
posted by FishBike at 4:32 PM on February 9, 2011


Thanks to the links posted in this thread, I went and had a look at several previous datawankery threads. So much fascinating stuff by FishBike. Thanks!

And now, to work on improving my Genius Index (only 10!).
posted by vidur at 5:17 PM on February 9, 2011


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