A Mefi place for project collaborations? July 26, 2011 2:49 PM   Subscribe

Is there a place on Mefi where members can hook up to work on new projects? Maybe expanding the scope of Mefi Projects or create something like Mefi Collab, a Mefi Music clone that's more general in scope?
posted by Foci for Analysis to Feature Requests at 2:49 PM (26 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

I think getting this off the ground would be a good idea: I'd use Projects for it.
posted by StrikeTheViol at 3:09 PM on July 26, 2011


I would dig this a lot. There are times when I think of something that could be really groovy if only someone in a ___ background thought so too and wanted to put a few sessions into it, and there are skills that I have that would make me that someone when it comes to other people's original ideas.

It could be called MeFiHopeMeHopeYou.
posted by herbplarfegan at 3:10 PM on July 26, 2011


I would love this.
posted by lalex at 3:16 PM on July 26, 2011


I'm far too lazy to get a project done on my own, but the idea that I might dissapoint someone might just be the shot in the arm I need!
posted by griphus at 3:17 PM on July 26, 2011 [5 favorites]


I have disappointed myself...
posted by griphus at 3:18 PM on July 26, 2011


Yeah, I've thought of posting stuff to jobs, but it doesn't seem quite right. I'm pretty sure projects is only for stuff that's already pretty well under way.
posted by Think_Long at 3:23 PM on July 26, 2011


Mmmm.... MeFi hookups.
posted by Admiral Haddock at 3:52 PM on July 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


Fine idea, but Collab is an awful name.
posted by The Whelk at 4:06 PM on July 26, 2011


Would getting drunk together be considered a 'project?' If so, sign me up.
posted by jonmc at 5:15 PM on July 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


MeTe(am)?
posted by arcticseal at 6:38 PM on July 26, 2011


Would getting drunk together be considered a 'project?' If so, sign me up.

I think IRL already covers that need, but Google+ has a feature called "Hangouts" that you can use if you're already too far gone to leave the house.
posted by StrikeTheViol at 6:45 PM on July 26, 2011


The bar for adding a new subsite is very high, and the last time this idea came up Matt felt like the idea wasn't very well defined: "Throwing together a discussion forum for brainstorming ideas is a bit too loose of a directive IMO for a well-functioning subsite for MetaFilter." I'm not sure a general theme of collaboration is any more tightly defined.

Adding a new subsite to MetaFilter is a big task. Unless there's a big push from the community or a more well-defined idea of how the site will work, it's not likely to happen.

I wonder if this is something that could start out at the wiki. Someone could make a page for collaboration there to gauge how much interest there is in the idea. A working prototype could help show that there's a lot of interest in having a new space for collaboration.
posted by pb (staff) at 7:58 PM on July 26, 2011


Come wis mee to zee cazbah, wee will make beuatiful music togeyzayr.
posted by not_on_display at 8:57 PM on July 26, 2011


Related question: can we play Metafilter in coop mode? I'm thinking two-to-eight mefites rampaging through threads flagging snark and collecting favorites?

It would be great if there was a way to do this online, too, so you don't have to lug your system over to your buddy's house for a LAN party.

Seriously though: isn't Metatalk already a place where people solicit help with projects? I'm thinking of all the different teams and book clubs and competitions that people post here.
posted by anotherpanacea at 4:06 AM on July 27, 2011


Ah, I missed the previous discussing, pb. I totally understand there needs to be more commitment and demand behind this as creating a subsite requires a lot of work. As for the wiki, not sure I follow you on the prototype part.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 5:53 AM on July 27, 2011


pb: "The bar for adding a new subsite is very high, and the last time this idea came up Matt felt like the idea wasn't very well defined: "Throwing together a discussion forum for brainstorming ideas is a bit too loose of a directive IMO for a well-functioning subsite for MetaFilter." I'm not sure a general theme of collaboration is any more tightly defined."

I said this last time and I'll say it again: It wasn't too loose of a directive to add chat threads to Music. Why is it that non-musical Projects are held to a higher standard?
posted by Plutor at 6:29 AM on July 27, 2011


It wasn't too loose of a directive to add chat threads to Music. Why is it that non-musical Projects are held to a higher standard?

I think it's just a different standard. Music had a community of people who wanted to talk about things that were outside of the purpose of the original "here's my song" thread and so we added a small discussion forum for the musicians mainly. Part of this was that we have a moderator that is a heavy user of the music site and could keep an eye on it and part of it was that there was an existing small music community. A similar thing for Projects seems, to me, to be way too wide in scope since everyone is basically a potential Project collaborator. Projects is mostly a Projects announcing page, not a place where people are working on Projects. We feel that creating a collaborative space is way outside of our wheelhouse.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:44 AM on July 27, 2011


jessamyn: "Projects is mostly a Projects announcing page, not a place where people are working on Projects."

This is circular logic. We won't allow projects-planning threads because people don't use the subsite to plan projects. (And even if you're pointing out that people only use Projects to announce "done"-ish projects instead of works-in-progress, that's because that's semi-official site policy.)
posted by Plutor at 6:55 AM on July 27, 2011


This is circular logic. We won't allow projects-planning threads because people don't use the subsite to plan projects.

This is me answering a question and trying to explain our thinking as far as why things have evolved as they have.

We set up Projects to be for a certain thing, a certain thing that was being clamored for by the users. Expanding its mission to include a significantly larger amount of things it could be for is something that strikes us as turning MeFi into a different thing. Chat threads on Music aren't actually for musical collaboration (though people occasionally use it for that) they're for talking specifically about music. Folks have set up a page on the wiki for looking for musical collaborators.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 7:11 AM on July 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


As for the wiki, not sure I follow you on the prototype part.

Well, a prototype is just a working model of something you'd like to see in the world. So if you set up a space for people to discuss collaboration and people start discussing collaboration, it shows that the community has a certain level of interest. Dozens of sites have spun off of MetaFilter. The ideas weren't quite right to start here, but they did take off away from the site. That's another option for this idea.

It wasn't too loose of a directive to add chat threads to Music.

Music Talk grew organically out of what was happening in various places on the site. It's very narrowly defined as a place to discuss the process of creating music. Having a space to discuss everything else that isn't music seems too chaotic. IRL is another example of a subsite that took existing behavior on the site and encouraged and channeled it at a new location. I'm not sure I see the push for a general collaboration site. This is the 2nd request, maybe this is the beginning of that push.
posted by pb (staff) at 7:14 AM on July 27, 2011


pb: " I wonder if this is something that could start out at the wiki. Someone could make a page for collaboration there to gauge how much interest there is in the idea. A working prototype could help show that there's a lot of interest in having a new space for collaboration."

Page created.
posted by zarq at 7:15 AM on July 27, 2011


Thanks for creating the wiki page, zarq. I've just created an account and I'm trying to figure out what to actually do :)

pb, I'm familiar with the concept of prototypes (being a developer and all). What confused me was how I should prototype projectCollab using a wiki engine. But I think I understand now. However, the mefi wiki doesn't get same exposure as mefi itself so I'm not sure how people would find out about it. At the same time, Also, I don't want to turn this into a crusade, lobbying for something that people might not care about. Guess I have to figure out if and how to proceed.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 8:11 AM on July 27, 2011 [1 favorite]


You're welcome!

Some quick references: Wiki Markup and a cheatsheet.
posted by zarq at 8:36 AM on July 27, 2011


Yeah, maybe the wiki isn't quite right for this, I don't know. I was thinking of the recent post collaboration idea that people have tried out there. Maybe a weblog would work better. Getting people to find out about it is part of answering the question of whether there is enough interest in the idea to make it a viable subsite.
posted by pb (staff) at 8:36 AM on July 27, 2011


pb: "Yeah, maybe the wiki isn't quite right for this, I don't know."

Now he tells me. ;)
posted by zarq at 8:47 AM on July 27, 2011


Interesting, but I'll observe that wikibooks has a standing policy of "Don't start a book you aren't prepared to write most of yourself." I'd imagine the projects works for finding people to add specific expertise once the project is already underway though. You might look into how kick starter works out the seriousness of all their different projects.
posted by jeffburdges at 1:17 PM on July 27, 2011


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