anonymous gift of mefi membership? August 20, 2011 4:32 AM   Subscribe

Is there a way to gift a membership anonymously, or at least without the gift linking to my username?

I know a couple of young adults who are really smart and incredibly thoughtful and articulate, but they don't have access to online payment stuff easily.
I reckon they would fit in great around here, but I don't especially want their first action on the site being trawling through uncle bystander's comment history.
It would be cool if there was a way to send a gift membership that said someone thinks this site would be awesome for you.
Is this already possible? Am I dumb and naive to suggest it?
posted by bystander to Feature Requests at 4:32 AM (30 comments total)

Another option would be to inform them of the community, and hand each of them a PayPal gift certificate.
posted by Smart Dalek at 4:47 AM on August 20, 2011


Is paypal the only method of payment available? Its not accessible across most of Africa and I'd offered memberships to at least two very articulate and thoughtful Kenyan friends.
posted by infini at 5:24 AM on August 20, 2011


To finish the thought, but our concern was that I'd *have* to know their log in names and passwords (at least the first one) to set up their accounts.
posted by infini at 5:25 AM on August 20, 2011


infini: you buy the accounts, set them up, hand over the keys to your friends via email.
posted by Meatbomb at 5:50 AM on August 20, 2011


Your young adult friends are worth $15— you could register a new account for yourself (no nefarious intentions, just the ability to respond to those pressing anonymous questions you have to ask occasionally, well, and this of course) and use that one to gift the accounts through the usual means.
posted by carsonb at 6:37 AM on August 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


I think wanting to do this anonymously might be the stumbling block, but not for any technical reason. Presumably the know and like you, so you recommending a site carries more weight than a anonymous email. Would they even see anonymous email or would it end up in their spam folder? If it doesn't, what reason would they have to pay attention to an anonymous email?

Go with Smart Dalek's solution, it'll let you be non-anonymous to them, while still keeping your identity on the site secret. The only loose end is this MeTa though. Perhaps ask the mods to delete it once you've made up your mind about how to proceed?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:44 AM on August 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


Meatbomb, wouldn't I then have to know what their usernames would be? Isn't that first in the registration process (recalls dimly)
posted by infini at 6:48 AM on August 20, 2011


Not with gift registrations, the giftee chooses their own name if and when they claim it. If you look at the user info in the infodump, you'll see a lot of "giftuser135603"-type usernames from people who haven't accepted their gift membership yet.
posted by Gator at 6:57 AM on August 20, 2011


Yeah, we have no anonymous gifting process built into the site.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:05 AM on August 20, 2011


It's "give", not "gift".

(pet peeve, right next to "iced cappucino".)
posted by dunkadunc at 8:11 AM on August 20, 2011 [3 favorites]


We will now play Which Century, the exciting quiz show in which folks guess, about some peeved-at and presumed-to-be-recent bit of English usage, which century said usage was first attested by the OED's records.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:18 AM on August 20, 2011 [12 favorites]


It's "give", not "gift".

Gift can be a verb. Also, I like it more for stuff like this. "Giving" (even if it's not the intent) in some situations implies to me a sense of need-based charity. "Gifting" is much more fun because YAY PRESENTS.

Cf. "I am giving you this chalupa because you look hungry" and "I am gifting you this chalupa because I know how much you like chalupas."

Also, what's up with spell check wanting to correct chalupa to paschal? That's not even a little bit the same!
posted by phunniemee at 8:20 AM on August 20, 2011 [2 favorites]


Well, you can give a gift anonymously, but the gifter won't be anonymous to admins. We'll have the Paypal info associated with the new gift account, but the giftee won't know who sent it. The invitation to create an account will say "a friend has given you the gift of MetaFilter."

Just log out of the site and go to the gift page. If you go that route you won't have the ability to see if the gift accounts you've given have been claimed.
posted by pb (staff) at 8:20 AM on August 20, 2011 [10 favorites]


The answer is the sixteenth! The sixteenth century.

Also, what's up with spell check wanting to correct chalupa to paschal? That's not even a little bit the same!

That's the end result of the inventor of the chalupa losing a bet to Blaise Pascal, namely that Blaise could not manage to misspell his own last name, in what is now historically remembered as "Pascal's wager".

posted by cortex (staff) at 8:33 AM on August 20, 2011 [2 favorites]


Just log out of the site and go to the gift page.

!

I did not know that, but it makes a crazy kind of sense.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:37 AM on August 20, 2011 [2 favorites]


Thanks Gator, I didn't even know one could gift an account, I was just going to pay and set them up etc (and have mods wonder why my sockpuppets were like the entirely different personas)
posted by infini at 8:48 AM on August 20, 2011


Wait, what's wrong with iced cappuccino? (I mean, besides the fact that it's inherently ridiculous - how does one ice a half cup of foam?)
posted by pecanpies at 10:01 AM on August 20, 2011


It's "give", not "gift".

It's both. Both words have verb forms.

GIFT:
verb (used with object)
5. to present with as a gift; bestow gifts upon; endow with.
6. to present (someone) with a gift: just the thing to gift the newlyweds.
posted by tzikeh at 10:01 AM on August 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


(pet peeve, right next to "iced cappucino".)

I expect that you mean "iced cappuccino" is correct (btw, double "p"s and double "c"s, if we're going to be all pedantic about it). "Ice cappuccino" is incorrect, just like "ice tea" is incorrect (though becoming more and more accepted through the wonders of descriptivism).
posted by tzikeh at 10:05 AM on August 20, 2011


Got a motherboard full of iced cappacitors, came out of a Dell.
posted by Ahab at 10:14 AM on August 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


That's the end result of the inventor of the chalupa losing a bet to Blaise Pascal, namely that Blaise could not manage to misspell his own last name, in what is now historically remembered as "Pascal's wager".

I would like to subscribe to your Newsletter of Approximate History.
posted by Devils Rancher at 10:16 AM on August 20, 2011 [2 favorites]


Just log out of the site and go to the gift page.

Information assimilated. And it tastes good.
posted by carsonb at 10:18 AM on August 20, 2011


Got a motherboard full of iced cappacitors, came out of a Dell.

I've heard of freezing a hard drive, (helpful hint - place it between two bags of frozen veggies to keep it cool while recovering data) but icing a swollen capacitor doesn't seem to stop the kernel panics. Should I try a cream cheese frosting?
posted by Devils Rancher at 10:18 AM on August 20, 2011


What about creating a sock puppet and using that to gift the accounts?
posted by Kimberly at 10:36 AM on August 20, 2011


Also, what's up with spell check wanting to correct chalupa to paschal? That's not even a little bit the same!

I think you'll find that it's four little bits the same, actually, two more the same but different, and just one entirely different. Also, you're forgetting about Taco Bell's Passover Supreme Combo.

posted by Sys Rq at 2:14 PM on August 20, 2011


Just log out of the site and go to the gift page.

Thanks all.
posted by bystander at 3:40 PM on August 20, 2011


Awesome! Now my sockpuppet wont know who I am.
posted by babby╩╝); Drop table users; -- at 5:56 PM on August 20, 2011 [2 favorites]


Anonymous sockpuppets with AI takes us one step closer to the self-perpetuating MeFi.
posted by arcticseal at 5:52 PM on August 21, 2011


pb: "the ability to see if the gift accounts you've given have been claimed."

How can you look this up if you gave a gift the "normal" way (i.e., when you were logged in)?

Also, I note that the title bar for the gift page says "Create a new user," which is sort of amusing. (The same language is used on the actual "new user" signup page.)
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 7:40 PM on August 21, 2011


Ah, found it. You just go back to the gift page. One thing about that page. It reads:
Thanks for taking the time to give the gift of MetaFilter. After registering your friend will be able to post both links and comments, as well as customize the Metafilter interface to their liking. The invitation will include your MetaFilter username and a link to your member profile so they know who gave them the gift.
While I doubt that anyone giving a gift account will be confused, the bit about "post links" seems either long in the tooth and/or slightly incomplete.
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 7:50 PM on August 21, 2011


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