Wait a week and repose? April 30, 2011 12:49 PM   Subscribe

Gee do I really have to wait a week to repost my question?

I'm not so sure this question is at all unfocused, rather its dealing with Doctoral education, a rather sprawling topic, and several of the subquestions collapse (e.g., Viva).

There admittedly are several subquestions, but

This post was deleted for the following reason: There are way too many questions here - please narrow it down and try next week. -- restless_nomad

waiting a week to repost seems a little harsh. I'm willing to tighten / break up if necessary, but I've asked broad questions in the past without deletion. Checked the FAQ didn't see anything, apologies if I missed a new rule.
posted by Mutant to Etiquette/Policy at 12:49 PM (89 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

Can you narrow it down to a single topic and send it to me? I can edit and undelete it but ten separate questions on eight or nine subtopics is totally not going to work.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 12:52 PM on April 30, 2011


Yay! My first MeTa!

I imagine the novelty is starting to wear off a bit.

Hang in there!
posted by Horace Rumpole at 1:00 PM on April 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


"is totally not going to work"

Ok, I haven't been on the site in a while and just saw the MeTa thread under mine so I had no idea who you were. There already is a single topic, the sub questions are intended to help elicit / direct feedback.

Curious, but why was it deleted so fast? Seems like nothing would have been lost if we'd left it up for more than a few minutes and deletion is always an option if the question appears to be drifting / etc. It got pulled in less than five minutes.
posted by Mutant at 1:00 PM on April 30, 2011


Because you asked ten questions, on subjects ranging from reference material to getting along with supervisors to handling vidae. (Is that the correct plural? Hmm.) It would have been impossible for the question NOT to drift.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 1:02 PM on April 30, 2011


I didn't think it was so bad.
posted by Daddy-O at 1:04 PM on April 30, 2011 [6 favorites]


I don't think there's a rule in the FAQ or guidelines about the number of related questions in an question. I do it frequently when the question is complex/difficult.
posted by loquacious at 1:05 PM on April 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


I dunno, it's all related to getting a PhD, which involves lots of details, so if anything it sounds like someone should tell Mutant to "chill out, it's going to be ok, you sound panicked" and then point him in the general direction for answers, with a time table to answer them and a reminder to avoid run on sentences.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:06 PM on April 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


That question looks fine to me. It looks like one question (basically: 'I'm starting a PhD; what advice can you offer?' with a lot of accompanying detail about what the OP's unsure of. I think if the detail was all mashed together into one paragraph, instead of listed in point form, no one would have bat an eyelid.
posted by hot soup girl at 1:07 PM on April 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Mutant: you want the book Getting What You Came For. The web forums at the Chronicle of Higher Education are useful, though US focused. Also worth looking through the archives here, there have been a lot of very useful threads over the years.

I agree that you'll get much more useful feedback if you can narrow down to just one or two main questions. Also be aware that advice you'll get here will heavily skew to the US system, which might be different from the Swiss system in ways we don't realize. (so, grain of salt)
posted by LobsterMitten at 1:08 PM on April 30, 2011


Yeah, I agree with Mutant here. There have been many lengthy questions, especially relationship ones, that went on for longer and were much less focused... no need to punish Mutant for being more thorough out of the gate than the average.
posted by StrikeTheViol at 1:10 PM on April 30, 2011 [6 favorites]


It would have been impossible for the question NOT to drift.

Well, then, you'd have been able to delete it without anyone having grounds for complaint if you'd just waited half an hour.

Or is there some bonus for being the fastest gunslinger in the West?
posted by orthogonality at 1:12 PM on April 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Um. Couldn't you two do this over MeMail rather than in MeTa?

r_n, you're doing that new person thing where you're being a little too prescriptivist. No one is going to fire you for not giving slack.

mutant, I have to agree that question is seriously unfocused and very much throwing spaghetti at the wall. Seems like it'd make sense to break this in half between books/resources and PhD experience.

Both of you need to chill out in your own way. You're both smart and you both know what you're doing. Just... chill. OK?
posted by dw at 1:12 PM on April 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


As to the meta-question about the whether to leave this question up: I think it's ok, and within the usual run of Askme, in that it does have a general question that is answerable: "any advice for a new PhD student in Finance in Switzerland?". So I don't think it needs deleting.

But from a pragmatics-of-question-asking point of view, I think you'll get much better answers if you can narrow down to, for example, advice about what to do before you start, what books and websites to consult beforehand or in your first year. Then ask your later questions, eg about vivas and editing your thesis, when you get to those points - you'll know better how to narrow down what you're asking, and you'll get more useful feedback as a result.
posted by LobsterMitten at 1:12 PM on April 30, 2011 [5 favorites]


I would rather see an occasional multipart question from someone who contributes high quality stuff than those weekly questions from the people who contribute nothing to the community but questions and solicitations for help.
posted by Daddy-O at 1:13 PM on April 30, 2011 [16 favorites]


Also, hey Mutant, congrats on starting the PhD!
posted by LobsterMitten at 1:13 PM on April 30, 2011 [7 favorites]


You know, I agree that the question shouldn't have been deleted...

But, GEEZ, orthonography, your attacks on r_n in both this thread and the other one are making me really uncomfortable joining into this conversation. You seem to be taking this extremely personally. You're being really cruel to someone who's new at her job. I try very hard not to get into fights on MeTa, but the anger you're throwing into both this thread and the other is causing more harm than good.
posted by meese at 1:17 PM on April 30, 2011 [67 favorites]


How about if Mutant cut the question in two, and I post one half for him? I've had a very quiet couple weeks.
posted by StrikeTheViol at 1:20 PM on April 30, 2011


tbh I think this question is way too unfocused to get useful answers. I think I am probably the kind of person the question would be targeting (a faculty member who has advised students, but is young enough to still remember what it was like), and I also usually answer academic questions if I can. But there is just way too much in that question and when I saw the wall of text (before it was deleted) I basically just moved on. Each of the parts is probably answerable (though many of them better directed at older grad students, or faculty members, in your specific department), but all told, there is no prioritization and no way for me to decide what you really care about in that list.
posted by advil at 1:20 PM on April 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Sorry I misspelled your name. I checked the spelling twice even, but was too preoccupied with vowels to realize how insanely off my consonants were.
posted by meese at 1:20 PM on April 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Well, then, you'd have been able to delete it without anyone having grounds for complaint if you'd just waited half an hour.

What the fuck? This is just getting weird and creepy.

On-topic: I didn't think the question was all that delete-worthy, but I also think it would be better (in the "more useful to Mutant") if broken up in the way LobsterMitten said.
posted by rtha at 1:21 PM on April 30, 2011


I agree with meese, you sound really angry and attacky there orthonography. Maybe ease up a bit and deal with the issue instead of attacking the person as if they're your personal enemy.

I like to think of r_n as a new waitress on her first day/week/month at a popular restaurant (Is pb the chef?). There's a lot of regulars use to the way things have been, so some patience is in order on both sides of the coin, 'cause hey, nobody wants to beat up on another person for being human, right?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:22 PM on April 30, 2011


You're being really cruel to someone who's new at her job.

I'm sorry. I'm not trying to be cruel.

I meant my comment here quite seriously: if restless_nomad was certain the question would drift, she needed only to wait until it did, and then she'd have been immune to criticism.

I have no prior interactions with restless_nomad, not preconceived notions about her, I'd forgotten she was mod: there's no personal animus here.
posted by orthogonality at 1:27 PM on April 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I don't have time to review my entire posting history (108 questions total), but a quick glance says eight sub questions has been ok in the past.

I'd suggest that two could be collapsed (e.g., the viva queries) into one, and the generic "anything else?" be discarded -- if indeed eight is a hard and fast limit -- but again, the one week wait seems harsh.

Anyway to get it reposted before a week?

Didn't mean to kick up in MeTa, just surprised and thought perhaps I'd something new in the FAQ ...thanks!
posted by Mutant at 1:30 PM on April 30, 2011


then she'd have been immune to criticism

Mods take a lot of things into consideration when making decisions about the good of the site. Isn't it lovely when "immunity to criticism" doesn't have to be one of them?
posted by Horace Rumpole at 1:30 PM on April 30, 2011


I believe that ask.me is better served by more deletions, not fewer. As for this question, I agree that the responses would have been high-noise, low-utility.
posted by crush-onastick at 1:32 PM on April 30, 2011


I'd suggest that two could be collapsed (e.g., the viva queries) into one, and the generic "anything else?" be discarded -- if indeed eight is a hard and fast limit -- but again, the one week wait seems harsh.

Note that my comment wasn't about the deletion per se. It was advice about how to get useful answers about your target audience. I'll restate my point: answering every question there (and I have opinions or knowledge about all of them) would take me hours. Some of the questions, as you even noted yourself, have appeared on their own as independent questions, multiple times. So I'm not going to answer them all. (I wouldn't even do it if it was one of my own PhD students sending me those questions in an email, though in that case I would feel obliged to answer the ones that I judged immediately important.) If there had been some guidance about which subquestions (maybe one or two) were actually important to you in an immediate sense, I would probably have made some attempt to answer those. But if it comes to that, why not just ask those one or two questions right now, and save the rest for later?
posted by advil at 1:38 PM on April 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


I thought the general rule was one question to an AskMe, and that sub-questions were only grudgingly tolerated if they were pretty clearly of the "What's the best thing to make for dinner? Without tomatoes, I mean, because I really don't like tomatoes." variety.
posted by wierdo at 1:40 PM on April 30, 2011


No recipes in meta.
posted by cjorgensen at 1:41 PM on April 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


All the questions seemed pretty much on the same topic; questions as vague as "starting a PhD; what do I need to know?" usually stand and this is much more focussed. I'd certainly rather people were allowed to post like this rather than forced to post a drip drip drip of related questions one a week over a period of months.
posted by nowonmai at 1:45 PM on April 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


I didn't want to pile-on in the other thread, but I don't see how a specific question entailing many fine details could possibly be against the AskMe rules.

He didn't ask: "what do I need to know about buying a car? and what are your favorite vegan kosher grilling recipes? and while I have you here what time of year would you book a trip to visit Barbados? ps- is this avocado still good to eat?" That would be ridiculous.

"I've started a Phd and would like to get tips and advise from those who have walked the path before me." Is a clear, concise, single sentence and all the rest is fishing for useful replies.
posted by paisley henosis at 1:53 PM on April 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


I appreciate that Mutant was really thorough in outlining all the questions he has about PhD stuff but I do feel like while all the questions are on the same topic, asking somewhere between eight and fifteen questions in one AskMe is something that falls into an "often delete" category for any of us. There's no hard and fast limit.

I undeleted this one because it's easier to move forward with "hey okay bit of a misunderstanding" than figuring out exacrtly how to rewrite it quickquick, but there is a long history of deleted "here are my eleven questions about this one topic" because they can look a lot like "I'd rather ask them all now and not wait my turn" sometimes. No harm, no foul.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 1:54 PM on April 30, 2011 [5 favorites]


Ugh, this post exists too?

I feel bad for everybody involved. For restless_nomad, it being that she can't win on the 8-dimensional chess game she's just found herself in. For Mutant, who has a lot of questions and needs a lot of answers...but congrats on the PhD programme to bring you the raison d'être for it all, hooray! For orthogonality, who means well but possibly needs to let off some steam somewhere and for whatever reason. And for the rest of us sucked into it all like moth to flame, sweet flame.

I'm not going to get into details about why I think your post is problematic, Mutant, but maybe to ask...Would you send your advisor or a professor or guidance counselor or anybody else otherwise qualified to answer these things an email just like that post? How do you think they'd respond?
posted by iamkimiam at 2:01 PM on April 30, 2011 [7 favorites]


Restless_Nomad has balls.

I haven't laughed so hard in a week.
posted by SLC Mom at 2:14 PM on April 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


Hey now, that one happened first. And come on, 1 leader, 14 add-ons, and 5 sub-sub-questions under the general heading of "aerobic fitness"? Just... no.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 2:16 PM on April 30, 2011 [5 favorites]


iamkimiam: "... maybe to ask...Would you send your advisor or a professor or guidance counselor or anybody else otherwise qualified to answer these things an email just like that post? How do you think they'd respond"

Posting his question to AskMe is helping refine/define exactly what to ask said advisor/professor/counselor when the time does come. I have been nothing short of amazed at the high quality of the responses to many questions here, the remarkably experienced crew willing to help, and most anyone would help Mutant with anything they can, being as he's held somewhat god-like here.

I've seen questions all over the map -- someone upthread mentioned how relationship questions in particular are often fleshed out fully, in fact responders often ask for further info.

It was a good question, seems to me, fleshed out but I say it was thorough.

All that said, I would not want to be in your shoes for the next two weeks, restless_nomad, the curve here is pretty vertical. Welcome to the show.
posted by dancestoblue at 2:27 PM on April 30, 2011


Oh, darn. I thought it was after.
That would have been so great.
posted by SLC Mom at 2:29 PM on April 30, 2011


I thought the general rule was one question to an AskMe, and that sub-questions were only grudgingly tolerated if they were pretty clearly of the "What's the best thing to make for dinner? Without tomatoes, I mean, because I really don't like tomatoes." variety.

That's closer to my usual thinking, yeah, though with some flexibility thrown in. Mutant, I would have preferred you tighten this one way up, too; that's a lot of Oh And Another Thing for one question, and if we're leaving it up after all we're leaving it up after all and I hope you get some use out of it, but it's definitely pushing it pretty hard.

As far as the wait-a-week thing: that's pretty much how it goes almost always if we nix a question. Now and then it's something where someone can get back to us real fast with a reconfiguration of the whole thing to be less problematic and we swap it in place, and that might have been something to do here, but it's more exception than rule and practically speaking the default answer is in fact "yes, it's a bummer but you need to wait a week."

Askme is not meant to be a time-critical resource. It's fine if you are able to use it for something time sensitive, but it really, really should not be the lynchpin of any mission critical plans.
posted by cortex (staff) at 2:30 PM on April 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm just surprised we haven't yet had a student posting his exam questions to Ask Me... during the exam.
posted by Justinian at 2:39 PM on April 30, 2011


AskMe: not the lynchpin of any mission critical plans.
posted by sciencegeek at 2:57 PM on April 30, 2011 [7 favorites]


And come on, 1 leader, 14 add-ons, and 5 sub-sub-questions under the general heading of "aerobic fitness"? Just... no.

Yeah, that's pretty much the epitome of trying to game the system like a crazed weasel.

(And yet, so amusing after the fact. I was hoping there'd be 11. b. 2) iv) levels as I scrolled down.)
posted by FelliniBlank at 2:59 PM on April 30, 2011


I would rather see an occasional multipart question from someone who contributes high quality stuff than those weekly questions from the people who contribute nothing to the community but questions and solicitations for help. *

luckily, AskMetafilter isn't there to serve for your entertainment. it's there to answer people's questions.

in other words, people who ask a lot of questions are not a problem.
posted by jammy at 3:01 PM on April 30, 2011 [9 favorites]


AskMetafilter: pretty much the epitome of trying to game the system like a crazed weasel.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:54 PM on April 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Wow, orthogonality, just looking at your recent posting history you've been acting like it was your freaking job to criticize restless_nomad. What the hell. Not a good look.
posted by jayder at 4:21 PM on April 30, 2011 [6 favorites]


luckily, AskMetafilter isn't there to serve for your entertainment. it's there to answer people's questions.

in other words, people who ask a lot of questions are not a problem.


Yeah, but Metafilter (with its various sub-sections) is a community, and it's annoying to see people with a posting history of, say, twenty-five questions, and NO comments, or ONLY comments on their own questions. They're takers who aren't giving anything. It's not against the rules or anything, but it definitely has the feel of kind of tacky free riding.
posted by jayder at 4:23 PM on April 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


but it really, really should not be the lynchpin of any mission critical plans.

I am one of those people who would use AskMe as a mission critical resource.

When I taught conversational English in Japan back in the 90s, I was suddenly given an English-language cooking class. I thought it would be fun to make crepes. Turns out I didn't know how to make crepes. So, during the lesson, I actually had to get on the phone and find out how. This was several years before MetaFilter was born.

The crepes turned out fine, but the recipe called for nutmeg, which, it turns out, Japanese folks are supposed to hate.
posted by KokuRyu at 4:26 PM on April 30, 2011


it's annoying to see people with a posting history of, say, twenty-five questions, and NO comments, or ONLY comments on their own questions

To be fair, I can think of three exceptions to this. First, sometimes this is because people have separate question-asking accounts for subject matter they don't want tied back to their 'real' account, which may be associated with their real name or other identifying information.

Second, some people may not have any answers that they feel would be both helpful and unique. I'm not going to knock someone for holding back rather than spewing wild guesses or incorrect information.

Third, some people may simply be afraid of being upstaged or told that they are wrong. I'm a pretty active MeFi user, and I try to contribute back to the community, but darned if I don't get nervous as heck before posting an FPP. I can easily imagine other people feeling the same way about posting an answer to AskMe.
posted by jedicus at 4:33 PM on April 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


> It's not against the rules or anything, but it definitely has the feel of kind of tacky free riding.

Speak for yourself. I've never understood this attitude; I think it's perfectly fine if people want to ask a lot more than they answer. In fact, I wish more people would act that way rather than rushing to add "answers" (consisting mainly of wild surmises and just plain wrong information) to every question they see.
posted by languagehat at 4:50 PM on April 30, 2011 [49 favorites]


Thank you languagehat. My sentiments as well.
posted by futz at 5:22 PM on April 30, 2011


Hmmm...

You know, if someone has a question they really want answered, and want to do it anon, send it to me. I'll post it "question from a friend". Hell, I don't give a shit if mefites think I have a proclivity towards eating my own poop or whatever. I just think its a damn shame when people are a bit reticent to ask a question simply because they have the reputation of an avatar to uphold.

Also, i think anony questions are interesting...sometimes.
posted by hal_c_on at 5:31 PM on April 30, 2011


tbh I think this question is way too unfocused to get useful answers.

From the first three responses to Mutant's question:

It's tricky to answer your questions because ...

I can't answer all your questions but:

One of the most important things about PhD research is learning how to ask focused questions, because you can only research focused questions. Almost the opposite of your post.


Note that all three, in their way, refer to this being anything but a simple, easy-to-address question. Not resolutely against THE RULES, I guess, but definitely a gray area thing that I can see a strong argument for deleting.

So, restless_nomad, I say keep doing what you're doing. You were never going to please everyone.
posted by philip-random at 5:34 PM on April 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


"Or is there some bonus for being the fastest gunslinger in the West?

Yeah, you totally meant that as a serious question and weren't being a prick at all.

Do you get some bonus for being an entitled dick in MeTa?
posted by klangklangston at 5:36 PM on April 30, 2011


hal_c_on: Hell, I don't give a shit if mefites think I have a proclivity towards eating my own poop or whatever.

Checkmate, mate.
posted by gman at 5:50 PM on April 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Do you get some bonus for being an entitled dick in MeTa?

Memail me.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:25 PM on April 30, 2011


jayder: " Yeah, but Metafilter (with its various sub-sections) is a community, and it's annoying to see people with a posting history of, say, twenty-five questions, and NO comments, or ONLY comments on their own questions. They're takers who aren't giving anything. It's not against the rules or anything, but it definitely has the feel of kind of tacky free riding."

Jedicus nailed it. You have no idea if that's true. You don't know if that's a sockpuppet account. For all you know, they could be someone with a high level of activity on any of the subsites using an "AskMe-only" account to maintain privacy.

AskMe is a fantastic resource and let's face it, it's fantastic that questions can be asked by everyone who meets the low bar prerequisites: five bucks and obedience to the subsite rules.

It is also most effective when people aren't judging the Asker beyond the scope of their question and genuinely make an effort to help them.
posted by zarq at 6:27 PM on April 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Do you get some bonus for being an entitled dick in MeTa?

My fault, your profile claims you're a "writer", so I assumed that meant "creative writer", implying some originality or at least felicity of expression.

Perhaps you specialize in in flyers for ska bands or the verbiage printed on milk cartons or the like, where words like "prick" and tired phrases like "entitled dick" are considered high art?
posted by orthogonality at 6:29 PM on April 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Saturday night's all right for fighting/ get a little action in...
posted by futz at 7:02 PM on April 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Perhaps you specialize in in flyers for ska bands or the verbiage printed on milk cartons or the like, where words like "prick" and tired phrases like "entitled dick" are considered high art?

Well thanks to orthogonality for answering the question with a most empathic "YES." Your bonus points are on the way...

Now, maybe we can show restless_nomad at least a basic amount of courtesy as a member of this community even when we are disagreeing with one of her decisions?
posted by zachlipton at 7:04 PM on April 30, 2011


MetaFilter: poop or whatever.
posted by loquacious at 7:05 PM on April 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


"My fault, your profile claims you're a "writer", so I assumed that meant "creative writer", implying some originality or at least felicity of expression."

Wow, you created "fastest gunslinger in the West"? And also the thing where you ask a sarcastic question and then later are all like, No, man, I was totally serious, you can't get mad?

But good going for the patented profile ice-burn. Are you sure you're not a writer too?
posted by klangklangston at 7:18 PM on April 30, 2011 [3 favorites]




Do you get some bonus for being an entitled dick in MeTa?

My fault, your profile claims you're a "writer", so I assumed that meant "creative writer", implying some originality or at least felicity of expression.


Do I get any points for a villanelle?

Do not post gentle on a Saturday night
Old posters should burn and rave at comments taken
Rage, rage against the new mods in their flight

Though wise men at their end know deletion’s right
Because their call-outs called back no post forsaken
Do not post gentle on a Saturday night

Good men may pause in comment, hold their bite
But sorry can’t soothe wounds insult’s been making
Rage, rage against the new mods in their flight

Wild men who’ve bested all in a Obamacare fights
Learn too late they’ve wrestled pigs, but won no bacon
Do not post gentle on a Saturday night

And you, o ortho, look down on us from height,
Righteous in fury, on vengeful course unshaken
Do not post gentle on a Saturday night
Rage, rage against the new mods in their flight


How about a limerick?

There once was a man from Nantucket
Whose dick was so big he could suck it
But to the ladies' dismay
His disdained use for display
Saying, I'd rather they hate me then fuck it


I'd go for more but I'm shit at Alexandrines.
posted by Diablevert at 7:45 PM on April 30, 2011 [9 favorites]


Who wants a hug?
posted by Roger Dodger at 7:50 PM on April 30, 2011


HUGS! I thought you'd never ask!

((((HUGS))))
posted by filthy light thief at 8:00 PM on April 30, 2011


Can this be a "Yay! First addition to the faq!" thing to? I think it would be good to have more clarity about what is okay with multiple questions in the same ask.
posted by Blasdelb at 9:26 PM on April 30, 2011


My fault, your profile claims you're a "writer", so I assumed that meant "creative writer", implying some originality or at least felicity of expression.

We're getting into "ass-jittering cattle" territory now.
posted by Think_Long at 9:35 PM on April 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


Some of us never left.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:51 PM on April 30, 2011 [6 favorites]


Diablevert gets points for a villanelle! And extra points for asking two questions! Plus naughty limerick points!
posted by a humble nudibranch at 10:22 PM on April 30, 2011


Can you narrow it down to a single topic and send it to me? I can edit and undelete it but ten separate questions on eight or nine subtopics is totally not going to work.

Then tell me how did this one passed the mod test:
Please help me understand and manage what I think is an unhealthy and debilitating jealousy. Bonus points: identify the actual question. Is that something that the reader is required to puzzle out themselves?
posted by peeedro at 10:41 PM on April 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


My guess would be that the above-the-fold part "Please help me understand and manage what I think is an unhealthy and debilitating jealousy" is the actual question, but that's beside the point. It's quite possible that the question hasn't come up for any mod test, if none of the mods have noticed it yet. Flagging it and / or dropping the mods a note via the contact form might be the best approach.
posted by rjs at 1:41 AM on May 1, 2011


Many thanks for the undeleting the query; between the responses posted there, some tips here and several emails before it was restored, I've gotten a lot of very specific, very useful answers that have helped me to understand the process going forward; much appreciated.

restless_nomad apologies for kicking off another MeTa thread and please hang in there, I'm sure you'll do a fine job moderating.
posted by Mutant at 2:23 AM on May 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


Yeah, but Metafilter (with its various sub-sections) is a community, and it's annoying to see people with a posting history of, say, twenty-five questions, and NO comments, or ONLY comments on their own questions. They're takers who aren't giving anything. It's not against the rules or anything, but it definitely has the feel of kind of tacky free riding.

Good questions are as much of a contribution to Ask MetaFilter as good answers.
posted by Mikey-San at 3:51 AM on May 1, 2011 [7 favorites]


Mutant posted a draft of his dissertation.

Nomad said revise and resubmit.
posted by fourcheesemac at 5:09 AM on May 1, 2011 [6 favorites]


Well then what do you call the kind of self-important critic who makes 10,000 snarky comments, but not a single original post?

Oh yeah: an asshat.
posted by rokusan at 6:22 AM on May 1, 2011


We're getting into "ass-jittering cattle" territory now.

It's 2011. Please stop quoting Brokeback Mountain.
posted by rokusan at 6:23 AM on May 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Jedicus nailed it. You have no idea if that's true. You don't know if that's a sockpuppet account. For all you know, they could be someone with a high level of activity on any of the subsites using an "AskMe-only" account to maintain privacy.

AskMe is a fantastic resource and let's face it, it's fantastic that questions can be asked by everyone who meets the low bar prerequisites: five bucks and obedience to the subsite rules.

It is also most effective when people aren't judging the Asker beyond the scope of their question and genuinely make an effort to help them.
posted by zarq at 6:27 PM on April 30 [2 favorites +] [!]


I have a pretty good idea if it's true, I think. Sometimes a question just gets me thinking, "I bet this person does nothing but ask weekly-like-clockwork questions and has never tried to help anyone else with a problem." Something about the question gets my antenna twitching that this person does nothing but gather help here and contributes in no other way. My gut instinct is usually confirmed. If it were a regular member who was just posting under a sockpuppet, I don't know why I'd have that feeling. There's a certain tone in the questions of the AskMe leeches.

I realize that not everyone shares this opinion, and I understand that some people think good questions are as much a contribution as comments and posts. I don't know why it bothers me. Maybe it doesn't really bother me that much.

I supppose my distaste for the behavior is their nakedly instrumental approach to AskMetafilter. "This is a tool where I can get my questions answered." No desire or inclination to hang around and actually participate in anyone else's questions. Those of you who are okay with the behavior are okay with the instrumental approach; I have a more communitarian approach that it's tacky to just glom onto other people's expertise without contributing something. Kind of like it would be tacky to get a house from Habitat for Humanity but never volunteer in the building of someone else's house.
posted by jayder at 6:52 AM on May 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


I really don't get this. It's Mutant's question and the answers are primarily for him, why is focus an issue? It's not like he asked about dog-grooming and then segued into orange marmalade recipes. His question could have been as simple as "tell me about what was the hardest or most confusing part of grad school for you?" and the answers would still be all over the map. Some questions are inherently messy, as are some answers.
posted by doctor_negative at 7:59 AM on May 1, 2011 [4 favorites]


PhD level question might just be of a PhD level volume.
posted by buzzman at 8:04 AM on May 1, 2011


It's 2011. Please stop quoting Brokeback Mountain.

It's 2011 and people are still quoting the Bible.

I don't know what my point is.
posted by WalterMitty at 11:02 AM on May 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


> "ass-jittering cattle"

Vibrating Bum-faced Goats, surely?
posted by scruss at 11:04 AM on May 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


The guy asking the heartrate question asks this as a sub-question:

"13) what happens if my heart physically grows larger in size? will it push on my bladder and make me have to pee more often?"

hahahaha what?
posted by marienbad at 11:27 AM on May 1, 2011 [2 favorites]


I know I'm coming late to this thread, but is there some issue with the Greasemonkey app which shows deleted threads? It hasn't worked for a week or so.
posted by UrineSoakedRube at 12:16 PM on May 1, 2011


'Rube, see here. The script needed updating, and plutor updated it. New one works!
posted by rtha at 12:19 PM on May 1, 2011


Then tell me how did this one passed the mod test:
Please help me understand and manage what I think is an unhealthy and debilitating jealousy. Bonus points: identify the actual question. Is that something that the reader is required to puzzle out themselves?


The question was pretty clear to me, even if she didn't frame it as a specific question: "How can I overcome feelings of jealously, which I realize are rooted in insecurity and are causing me distress?" Indeed, pretty much all the folks who posted answers in that thread gleaned that as the core question, and stayed on that topic.

So while it might have been framed as a complex situation with various personal details, it still boiled down to one essential problem for which the OP was searching for solutions. It wasn't a question about jealousy with 15 different subquestions about, say, how to find a therapist and what kind of therapy would be best and should she go on antidepressants too and could someone explain the difference between SSRIs and non-SSRIs, etc.
posted by scody at 1:08 PM on May 1, 2011


Cool. Thanks, rtha.
posted by UrineSoakedRube at 4:00 PM on May 1, 2011


> How about if Mutant cut the question in two, and I post one half for him?

How about if Mutant cuts the question in half and the two ends crawl away in different directions?

(Concerning M's actual meta-issue, I do not think a given askme question should count as 'your askme question for [time interval]' if it gets deleted.)
posted by jfuller at 5:32 PM on May 1, 2011


Anyway to get it reposted before a week?

I know this question has been restored, but why would this particular question need to be answered within the week?

Also, I feel like veteran users asking "Is there a new rule?" ignores a lot of previous Metatalk conversations.
posted by Jagz-Mario at 6:57 PM on May 1, 2011


Power Corrupts but administrative power corrupts absolutely
posted by Fupped Duck at 7:21 PM on May 1, 2011


So, will we get to call him Doctor Mutant? Because that would be cool.
posted by Grangousier at 5:29 AM on May 2, 2011


Yes. Mutant will, mutatis mutandis, become Dr. Mutant; or Mutant, Ph.D.
posted by Crabby Appleton at 8:19 PM on May 3, 2011


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