Offering one's services in an AskMe answer? March 14, 2011 3:58 PM   Subscribe

What is the etiquette for offering one's services as an answer to an AskMe seeking said services?

Often an FPP will appear on AskMe of the general construction 'looking for a _________ to do ________ .' And often answers will suggest the OP put something on MeFi Jobs. Is it wrong or in bad form to simply drop a line in the thread saying, "Hey, I do this! here's what I charge; contact me if you want." Or is it better to just MeMail them?

Forgive me if this is ground well trodden in earlier threads.
posted by Lutoslawski to Etiquette/Policy at 3:58 PM (26 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

Best idea is to send MeMail to them. We've had some folks historically offering services who find that the thread persists in the Google Universe forever and they get a lot of random contact for doing whatever the thing is. As a result, we're a little touchy about making sure that there's not something sketchy going on [i.e. two linked accounts one saying "Need someone to do this" and another saying "Hey I do that!"] and so it's a little more hassle-free for all concerned to just MeMail them.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 4:00 PM on March 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


A note to people who post questions that get "You need a lawyer" as an answer: lawyers, including lawyers posting in the thread, generally can't ask if you would like to be their client. So if you see someone post an answer like "I'm a lawyer, but not your lawyer. You should contact a competent lawyer in your jurisdiction," don't assume that they can't or won't handle your case. There's a good chance they would be happy to but are ethically prohibited from making the first move. At worst they'll politely decline and help you find representation elsewhere.

Following jessamyn's suggestion of MeMail, definitely take an inquiry about representation to MeMail or, better yet, email. Keep the details out of it in the initial contact; in the unlikely case that there is a conflict of interest you don't want to spill the beans to the other side's attorney.

However, the choice of an attorney is an important one and should be based on more than just an AskMeFi answer. Don't just retain the first attorney you see, MeFite or otherwise.
posted by jedicus at 4:24 PM on March 14, 2011 [5 favorites]


I second the memail suggestion. It was via a MeFi memail response to my AskMeFi that I found my (very wonderful) guitar teacher, so the method works fine.
posted by bearwife at 4:32 PM on March 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


What if I'm looking for a lawyer to crochet me one of those beanies?
posted by found missing at 4:35 PM on March 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


I've used memail the couple of times I thought my own website was the best answer to a question just to avoid the appearance of impropriety, and I feel good about it.
posted by restless_nomad at 4:42 PM on March 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


What if I'm looking for a lawyer to crochet me one of those beanies?

You will end up with an extremely expensive beanie and somewhere a paralegal will have learned how to knit.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 5:36 PM on March 14, 2011 [71 favorites]


Would those "services" happen to be $20, same as in town?
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 5:57 PM on March 14, 2011


No sex with old ladies and no bear-traps. Those are my "bugaboos."
posted by bardic at 6:20 PM on March 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


I would like to offer my services as a cookie tester.
posted by arcticseal at 6:49 PM on March 14, 2011 [2 favorites]


I am a GUY who can do THINGS.

Feel free to contact me for ANY SERVICE. No reasonable offer refused.

(Danger: I may make art out of it later.)
posted by klangklangston at 7:44 PM on March 14, 2011


I'd like to offer my services as a homewrecker. I can do romantic, physical/mental, or property damage or some combination thereof. Each case is tailored to specific home environment destroying needs based on my proprietary algorithm. Payment is accepted upfront when services are requested but usually will be collected involuntarily. Message me for more information or just wait a few days for the scourge to come to your door.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:21 PM on March 14, 2011


Wait - THAT'S where those crocheted beanies come from?! I had no idea...
posted by OneMonkeysUncle at 8:31 PM on March 14, 2011


What if a _________ who does ________ has already posted their availability on MeFi jobs? Can we direct the Asker to the post describing their abilities? Since that's already public (and, if I remember correctly, can be taken down by the user who's posted their availability) surely there's no harm in linking to that in-thread?

I ask because while the Asker may not decide to use the services of that particular mefite, it might benefit that mefite while their jobs post is still active.
posted by ocherdraco at 8:37 PM on March 14, 2011


"What if a _________ who does ________ "

This reads like a FetLife MadLibs.
posted by klangklangston at 10:39 PM on March 14, 2011 [4 favorites]


FetLife MadLibs would mean my tendency to answer everything like a 9 year old boy would actually probably fill in the blank rather accurately, and therefore, not very funny.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:23 PM on March 14, 2011 [1 favorite]


One of the things that I learned when working at Taboo was that there seems to be a very, very sharp line between kinksters that can laugh at their kink and kinksters for whom the kink is SERIOUS BUSINESS.

The only problem, really, was having to hang out with both groups simultaneously.
posted by klangklangston at 11:30 PM on March 14, 2011


I offered my transcription services to someone who has an AskMe up via memail. They didn't know they needed a transcriptionist :) I also linked to my Jobs listing in the mail.
posted by By The Grace of God at 2:55 AM on March 15, 2011


tries hard not to create mad libs fetish on fetlife
posted by By The Grace of God at 2:56 AM on March 15, 2011 [3 favorites]


One of the things that I learned when working at Taboo was that there seems to be a very, very sharp line between kinksters that can laugh at their kink and kinksters for whom the kink is SERIOUS BUSINESS.

True that. The Ray Davies v. Dave Davies Fan Wars have been known to get ugly.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 8:16 AM on March 15, 2011 [2 favorites]


This is slightly related, but if someone has a service that they want to offer to Mefites, then where would be the best place to post? If any, that is. Mefi Jobs seems more "Help Wanted" and Projects is for actual content and websites, right?
posted by schroedinger at 9:04 AM on March 15, 2011


Thanks much! Appreciate all the answers, and Jessamyn thanks for clearing that up!
posted by Lutoslawski at 9:54 AM on March 15, 2011


We've had some folks historically offering services who find that the thread persists in the Google Universe forever and they get a lot of random contact for doing whatever the thing is.

This was me. I was the 1st to say in some random thread that I had Google Voice invites (I don't have them anymore! Don't e-mail me!), and people who found the thread via Google e-mailed me forever after.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 10:03 AM on March 15, 2011


HEY YO CAN I GET A GOOGLE VOICE INVITE HOOK ME UP, PSH!
posted by klangklangston at 10:27 AM on March 15, 2011


You should, By The Grace of God, I am into ___________ Mad Libs.

[ ] giving
[ ] receiving
[*] everything having to do with
posted by jtron at 12:27 PM on March 15, 2011 [1 favorite]


FetLife can lead to some interesting happenings. As I told an old friend as we caught up on years of happenings the other night, "You know, 14 years ago I really wanted to see you naked. I never thought it would be 14 years later and on the Internet, though." Her husband thought that was hilarious.
posted by mrbill at 10:02 AM on March 16, 2011 [1 favorite]


I think the answer to the original question is "whip it out," is it not?
posted by Mister_A at 11:13 AM on March 16, 2011


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