GoPro Blue September 26, 2013 4:57 PM   Subscribe

Fireman Saves Kiten [sic] is a recent FPP that I take issue with. It's a commercial advertisement. It's great for Reddit but not great for MetaFilter.

"Pepsi Blue" is an ad or product endorsement for reasons other than just overall consumer joy." [FAQ]

Fireman Saves Kiten [sic] is a recent FPP that I take issue with. It's an ad. It's a commercially produced advertisement by the fine folks at GoPro, produced to extoll the virtues of a consumer device. It's clearly so, because it begins with a product shill animation - GoPro - and it's hosted on YouTube by the GoPro Camera company. I hope you agree that it is a commercially produced video. I hope you agree that it is produced to sell a commercial product.

There are a great number of astonishing, stupendous videos available on the internets that are commercially produced - Red Bull, Sports Illustrated, Axe, Pepsi.

I like to think that not every fun/awesome corporate-produced heartstring-tugging product placement video belongs on MetaFilter. Yes, despite the KITTEHS, this video is corporate-produced. Please, please don't think that some earnest early-20s chinpubes intern just happened to film this because a sudden opportunity presented itself. Don't be a rube.

Heartstring-tugging high-producton money-backed video that isn't selling you anything - A OK for MetaFilter

Regarding MetaFilter's ostensible rule against PepsiBlue posts, it's important to observe the second clause of the definition - "for reasons other than just overall consumer joy". This is indeterminable and not worth debating unless you are an actual detective and can present evidence of a corporate connection, like when the mods backtrace an IP. Then it's a righteous smackdown.

Regarding that, my opinion is that kbanas is not engaged in nefarious stealthy marketing. kbanas is awesome, no trouble there. So if your argument on favor of keeping this FPP despite the generally accepted Pepsi Blue rules is the absence of commercial malice, then let's not argue, because it's pointless.

IN CLOSING, please consider: brilliant marketers make brilliant ads, and if we all post links to their brilliant, moving and enjoyable ads, then this website will be full of ads and most people won't even notice. My advice is to not host FPPs that are simply ads, for that reason.

Thank you for listening.
posted by sidereal to Etiquette/Policy at 4:57 PM (131 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

Yeah, it's a little tough, and the marketing teams behind GoPro are obviously doing a great job making videos. I think I actually posted that GoPro video where a seagull takes a camera and flies around San Francisco.

For what it's worth, the post got barely any flags, and no one complained that it should be taken down. If you spot stuff in the future, feel free to flag it.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 5:01 PM on September 26, 2013


You know, I just found that kitten video through the YouTube homepage (not Metafilter). I thought about posting it to Metafilter, saw that is was a GoPro ad, and thought, "No, not right for Metafiler."

But, you know what, this comment redeems the whole thread for me. It's sad but life-affirming. Yeah, the thing's an ad. But it's amazing to watch, and sparked a worthwhile discussion. I vote that it should stay. Some ads have sufficient redeeming virtues - and I think this is one.
posted by Dasein at 5:03 PM on September 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


There have been many many many ads/commercials/movie trailers posted on MeFi over the years, just for the commercials themselves. I've never taken the Pepsi Blue thing to mean that posting ads was specifically against the guidelines, just that they deserve special scrutiny. I'm sure a discussion much like this has been had in MeTa before. If you really want to broaden it, music videos have been posted a bunch of times, and what are those but ads for albums?
posted by LionIndex at 5:09 PM on September 26, 2013 [7 favorites]


The original video was shot by a fireman with his helmet camera. The original was a mock movie trailer put together by Fresno, CA firefighter Cory Kalanick using footage he captured of a kitten rescue and resuscitation he performed last month.

GoPro spruced it up and polished it up.
posted by JujuB at 5:12 PM on September 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


I don't know, this post sounds kind of kittenist.
posted by planetesimal at 5:13 PM on September 26, 2013 [4 favorites]


At this point I can't imagine anyone with really good -- like FPP good -- GoPro footage isn't going to at least try to sell it to them for advertising purposes.
posted by griphus at 5:16 PM on September 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Ads are a part of our lives. Like most things in life some are good, some are bad.

I have a love/hate relationship with ads. I think they are a fine subject for a post, and if you look through my posting history I know I've posted at least one. I could make an argument that every post is an ad for something.

Sometimes ads are the story. Sometimes they are just cool. Sometimes they slip past you and you don't even realize you just saw an ad.

KFC! KFC! KFC! KFC!
posted by cjorgensen at 5:17 PM on September 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


If GoPro staged the whole thing, drugged a kitten or the like, yeah, I'd be deep in the fuck 'em camp. Given that the only thing they did was to repost something real that just happened to be shot on one of their cameras, it's exactly not like a publicity stunt and hard for me to feel a whole lot of outrage.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 5:23 PM on September 26, 2013 [21 favorites]


SLYT FPP to an ad, even an adorable ad, meh.
posted by theora55 at 5:35 PM on September 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


i ignore all posts involving anything remotely feline. I flag garbage. And then, I move on.
posted by IvoShandor at 5:35 PM on September 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


Nice try bird. #freemarket #America #wholegrain
posted by vozworth at 6:06 PM on September 26, 2013 [11 favorites]


IN CLOSING, please consider: brilliant marketers make brilliant ads, and if we all post links to their brilliant, moving and enjoyable ads, then this website will be full of ads and most people won't even notice. My advice is to not host FPPs that are simply ads, for that reason.

The site will not be full of ads. It's not something that can be filled up. Posting amazing ads doesn't preclude people from posting amazing things that are not ads.

I've posted a couple of ads over the years that I thought were well above the bar for cool things I found on the web that I thought Metafilter would like. I do not think that has harmed the site, and I do not think it will harm the site if other people continue to do that in the future.
posted by jacquilynne at 6:07 PM on September 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


i ignore all posts involving anything remotely feline

well, if anyone ever posts about a man eating tiger in your neighborhood, i guess i know what's going to happen to you
posted by pyramid termite at 6:10 PM on September 26, 2013 [6 favorites]


If GoPro staged the whole thing,

Even if we buy these are real firefighters recording a real incident, they're certainly hamming it up to an amazingly tacky degree. They "happen" to sit the camera down with perfect framing of the poor little kitty getting water poured on him. (They're also very careful to keep the logo on the water bottle turned away from the camera.)
posted by drjimmy11 at 6:30 PM on September 26, 2013


man that kitten died. c'mon now.
posted by boo_radley at 6:58 PM on September 26, 2013 [6 favorites]


The other day there was an FPP about hand jobs, and you're complaining about this?
posted by HuronBob at 7:00 PM on September 26, 2013 [5 favorites]


Tomorrow: GoPro footage of handjobs.

I guess the camera can be strapped to the wrist or something.
posted by griphus at 7:02 PM on September 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


I guess the camera can be strapped to the wrist or something.

Um, motion sickness, anyone?
posted by annsunny at 7:28 PM on September 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


It can't be any more (or less) motion sickness inducing than GoPro + Hula Hoop.
posted by griphus at 7:36 PM on September 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


Don't be a rube.

This is good advice.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:37 PM on September 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


griphus: "Tomorrow: GoPro footage of handjobs."
featuring the music of Oasis.
posted by boo_radley at 7:51 PM on September 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


I didn't like it because I hate kittens.
posted by GuyZero at 7:55 PM on September 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


I think I actually posted that GoPro video where a seagull takes a camera and flies around San Francisco.

AKA, the Rube GoBird Machine
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 7:59 PM on September 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


Someone mentioned it above, but GoPro (along with making their own videos) uses consumer created videos for advertising. It's kind of their thing, that's how they've sold so many billions of these... the customers sell the product.

http://gopro.com/videos/video-of-the-day/submit

The camera takes high-quality video, that's why you see them in T.V. shows all the time, just because the quality is good doesn't mean they made the video, it's inherent in the camera.
posted by thylacine at 8:07 PM on September 26, 2013


some earnest early-20s chinpubes intern

OTOH, if said video never had been posted, then I never would have read this phrase which is, frankly, a beautiful thing. So there's that.
posted by octobersurprise at 8:21 PM on September 26, 2013


Every single post on metafilter ever has been advertising of one kind or another kind. Request denied.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:32 PM on September 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


The other day there was an FPP about hand jobs, and you're complaining about this?

It was complaining about handjobs - Mefites like complaining.
posted by Artw at 8:49 PM on September 26, 2013 [3 favorites]


If this new camera is pretty good at on the go footage, and the only "ads" it creates are ads showing the best footage that the camera produces, so that in effect the ads are uniformly the best footage that some new great camera produces, I don't have a big problem with having the ads on MetaFilter occasionally. That is probably going to be some fucking good footage. (And it was.)

Also, consider the history of MetaFilter. We do cats here. We put pancakes on them, watch them play in boxes, admire cartoons of them torturing Simon their owner, read websites of them typing ALL CAPS IS HOW I FEEL INSIDE with their human, and of course, scan them on catscan.com.

In conclusion, cats! (touch meeeeeeeee, it's so eeeeeeeeasy to leave meeeeeee!)
posted by onlyconnect at 8:49 PM on September 26, 2013 [5 favorites]


We put pancakes on them

That was actually a bunny.
posted by radwolf76 at 9:34 PM on September 26, 2013 [6 favorites]


But what of the melon babies?
posted by Artw at 9:42 PM on September 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


The other day there was an FPP about hand jobs, and you're complaining about this?

Hell, someone is probably complaint about the lack of videos of firemen in trees getting handjobs.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:56 PM on September 26, 2013


Cool. Can I post that Beyoncé Pepsi ad here. I think that's awesome.

Best of the web and shit.
posted by hal_c_on at 10:20 PM on September 26, 2013 [1 favorite]


"The camera takes high-quality video, that's why you see them in T.V. shows all the time, just because the quality is good doesn't mean they made the video, it's inherent in the camera."

and

"If this new camera is pretty good at on the go footage, and the only "ads" it creates are ads showing the best footage that the camera produces, so that in effect the ads are uniformly the best footage that some new great camera produces, I don't have a big problem with having the ads on MetaFilter occasionally. That is probably going to be some fucking good footage. (And it was.)"

I missed that post because I've been mostly away from MeFi for the last couple of weeks, and it has nothing to do with the fact that I bought a GoPro Hero 3 Black two weeks ago.

Actually, it really doesn't — I'm just going through a phase of visiting MeFi less.

But as it happens I did just get the top-of-the-line model of the current GoPro and so I've been learning quite a bit about it for the last while.

It's been both ironic and frustrating in a slightly sad way that I bought this camera and I'm disabled. There's so many amazing things it can do in the context of outdoor/extreme/lightweight/small requirements that it's really frustrating that I can't do them. It comes, out of the box, with a waterproof plastic casing that affects only the mike. It's tiny and lightweight — so many of the best videos I've seen are built around getting beautiful hi-def video from amazing camera placements, such as mounted on a hula-hoop and the camera continually faces the person (and their midriff roles across the lens cyclically). And in slow-motion! At 1080p it can do 60fps. At 720 it can reach 120fps. And it can do 4K video, though only at 15fps, which isn't very useful, but 2.7K at up to 30fps.

But like any camera, from crummy to great, you can do amazing things with it if you know what you're doing and have a good eye and sense of what you're doing, and you can get crappy results when you don't. So there are many, many amazing professional quality videos out there from the GoPro Hero 3 Black, but those videos represent a lot more work than just recording something. And in terms of how great the photography is, the ProTune modes are basically the equivalent of RAW, so photographers who know what they're doing can produce incredible results in post-production.

So, the point is that right now there's a lot of videos out there that are being made by GoPro customers and they're mostly not staged (some of their videos of the day are clearly sponsorship things, like the sports ones, but many of them are just customer submitted) and they are really amazing and worth a FPP.

We've already had at least one recently, IIRC, the gimbal mounted GoPro on a quadcopter, which is what led me to look at the camera and then decide to buy it. Too bad I can't afford a quadcopter (but the kit ones look really interesting).
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 10:39 PM on September 26, 2013 [2 favorites]


Hell, someone is probably complaint about the lack of videos of firemen in trees getting handjobs.

Then they don't know about Rule 34 - I'm not going to google because I have to go to a meeting, but I would be very surprised if it fails in this case.
posted by Dr Dracator at 11:10 PM on September 26, 2013


Comment #1 in this thread confirming, once again, that this is One Man's Web Site, Who pays the bills and pays the help, and not the fictional community web log so often portrayed here. Nothing wrong with that, regardless of your personal posture on the utility of flagging or the lack thereof, so long as no one subsequently argues the fiction portrayed, against the fact again confirmed.

We're mostly all paying $5 newbies, here. Not that most of us could be getting $20, in town. Because we wouldn't, even if we knew where the hell "town" was...
posted by paulsc at 12:45 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


The video creeped me out a bit because, apparently, the kitten died later. Which is not as heartwarming and camera-selling, so GoPro left it out. (at least that's what I hear, I would so, so love to be wrong on this)
posted by JHarris at 12:53 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


For what it's worth, the post got barely any flags, and no one complained that it should be taken down. If you spot stuff in the future, feel free to flag it.

Wait. I don't understand your comment. Was this your explanation as to what is necessary to warrant a deletion (in this case, enough flags that make it 'not barely'), or were you acknowledging that the OP of this thread is correct, but entirely dismissive of his complaint?

Because without a hint of sarcasm, I would love to post that Beyoncé Pepsi commercial as an SLYT.

It really is pretty awesome.
posted by hal_c_on at 2:01 AM on September 27, 2013


I'm okay with ads, as long as they're good ads. People post movie trailers and other explicit advertising to the front page all the time. And, for what it's worth, the footage wasn't shot as an ad, it was repurposed for an ad after the fact. And the GoPro ad is an improvement in every way.
posted by zanni at 2:33 AM on September 27, 2013


hal_c_on, it didn't (and doesn't) seem like a problem post to us for the reasons folks have mentioned here, and it was only flagged once (now twice, 30+ hours later), so it apparently didn't seem like a problem post for most people. We might look at something and be okay with it, but then if it gets a lot of flags we're going to go back and have a look to see what we missed. We expect to see flags on a post if members feel like it breaks the guidelines or is a problem for other reasons, and that's how it usually works out – and why we encourage people to flag posts they think should be deleted.

We can talk about whether people think Absolutely No Advertising Type Posts Ever is a good idea or not (it's not something that is currently part of the guidelines), but threatening to just start posting ads out of pique isn't a great way to go forward with that discussion.
posted by taz (staff) at 2:38 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


"... We expect to see flags on a post if members feel like it breaks the guidelines or is a problem for other reasons, and that's how it usually works out – and why we encourage people to flag posts they think should be deleted. ..."
posted by taz (staff) at 5:38 AM on September 27

Really? You're really going to advance that crap, still, as a paid...

Never mind. I'm sure you're entirely right, taz. After all, I'm a $5 newbie.
posted by paulsc at 2:53 AM on September 27, 2013


*wakes up*

*peers cautiously at thread*

Wow. Reasoned responses, no ad hominem, no strawmen. I'm impressed. Thanks to everyone for your views.

One thing:

no one complained that it should be taken down

Actually I did, in the thread. You deleted it. I'm not arguing that it should not have been deleted. I'm disputing your statement that no one complained.

Flagging is another problem altogether, for another post, which I probably will not make. Essentially, though, statements about the number of flags a post gets are meaningless without verifiable evidence.
posted by sidereal at 3:01 AM on September 27, 2013 [3 favorites]


*wakes up*
*peers cautiously about*

MEEAUW. How long have I been out? Is this aNOTHER commercial where I'm supposed to be the cute one? Where's food?

[note: nobody flags a kitten]
posted by Namlit at 3:07 AM on September 27, 2013


"... Essentially, though, statements about the number of flags a post gets are meaningless without verifiable evidence."
posted by sidereal at 6:01 AM on September 27

I could be wrong, I have been before. But until further evidence, QFT.
posted by paulsc at 3:12 AM on September 27, 2013


Sidereal, complaints about posts go to Metatalk or to the contact form, which is why your comment was deleted. It's fine if you don't want to flag posts, but you need to complain to us or here, not in the thread.

I'm surprised to have to say this, but I'm not lying about flags. It would be pretty ridiculous to lie about stuff like that, and not something I/we would do anyway. But here's the thing: if I say there was only one flag, then another one over 30 hours later, and that wasn't the case, then everyone on the admin side would see that I was lying about that, and I don't think anybody would be happy about it. That would be me expecting them to back me up on a stupid lie, which isn't how we work and not how we are. I'd expect to get a note right quick about, hey, not cool... maybe just a mistake or something, but let's try to be careful and not do that.
posted by taz (staff) at 3:32 AM on September 27, 2013 [8 favorites]


paulsc, do you have something you want to say or are you just going to let us try to figure out what you're alluding to?
posted by empath at 3:36 AM on September 27, 2013 [6 favorites]


Also, I am in favor of advertising posts, if they are good ads. Everybody is selling something. All the links to news sites have ads. Metafilter has ads. People put ads on their youtube channels that we link to. Artists we link to are selling their work in galleries, etc.
posted by empath at 3:38 AM on September 27, 2013 [5 favorites]


"paulsc, do you have something you want to say or are you just going to let us try to figure out what you're alluding to?"
posted by empath at 6:36 AM on September 27

Alluding to something? Not me. I'm not wondering, for one minute, how a tech team savvy enough to put up a new chat server yesterday, can't post a link to the oft discussed flag queue.

Me? I'm sure that would result in infinite JRun errors. Good reason to keep it...

Ah, I hate JRun errors.
posted by paulsc at 3:42 AM on September 27, 2013


Alluding to something? Not me. I'm not wondering, for one minute, how a tech team savvy enough to put up a new chat server yesterday, can't post a link to the oft discussed flag queue.

Wow, this is super bad faith; one, it's a completely different issue and two, frankly, I don't see any reason that users should see the flag queue. It'll result in a bunch of nitpicky arguments that don't help anyone and, while I am a hugely curious person and would love to see it because it seems fascinating, I also recognize that it's not of my damn business. This site is pretty open in many, many ways but that doesn't mean we get to know every specific internal detail of everything. This isn't, like, government transparency, this is a privately-owned website and, while the community is super important to many people (including me), I also recognize that my investment in Metafilter doesn't mean I deserve access to everything which would just create a bonkers and unproductive free-for-all.

I get that may you're frustrated and would be in favor of additional information, but saying it like this doesn't really help anything.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 3:51 AM on September 27, 2013 [21 favorites]


We don't put up a link to the flag queue because we are not going to argue about every flag and every decision, which we've discussed here over and over again. A public flag list was never going to be a feature of the flag function just like a public list of deleted comments was never going to be a feature of the delete function. We leave some posts up that have many flags, and we delete some posts that don't have any, because the flag function was never meant to be or act like an automated system. It's a system for members to easily pass on info to moderators because a) we can't see everything, and b) it allows us to quickly see what people are finding problematic generally.
posted by taz (staff) at 3:55 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


taz, I assure you, I am not calling you a liar. I also understand that complaints about posts aren't supposed to go in the posts.
posted by sidereal at 3:59 AM on September 27, 2013


"... I get that may you're frustrated and would be in favor of additional information, but saying it like this doesn't really help anything."
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 6:51 AM on September 27

Eh, I'm not frustrated, Mrs. Pterodacryl. I paid my $5, and never looked back.

taz's justification of the obfuscation of reality is perfectly cromulent, as far as I can't see. I wish her, and the Proprietor, and all the paid help, all the luck in world, in maintaining that this is a community web log.

And I really do hate JRun errors.
posted by paulsc at 4:03 AM on September 27, 2013


So, uh, paulsc, what's up? I have this distinct impression of you in my mind as being a friendly, nice dude and a valuable part of the site. Maybe I'm confusing you with someone else. I hope not. I don't think I am.

In this thread you seem really angry... Bordering on nasty, even... Certainly seething with some kind of.... something. It's just a website, man. It's just a video about cats. It was my god damn post and I could seriously not give less of a shit. All this whole site is is a bunch people. Other people. Just like you. Most of them trying their best.

Relax. Smile. Take a walk. Hug someone. Stop being prick.

It doesn't suit you.
posted by kbanas at 4:10 AM on September 27, 2013 [11 favorites]


"... It doesn't suit you."
posted by kbanas at 7:10 AM on September 27

If you're getting that impression, you'll be happy to learn that what suits me is generally Italian woven 45" loom width, worsted wool. I like deep greys and broad pinstripes, but that's just me.

JRun errors are the worst, if not the worsted, as I think we all agree.
posted by paulsc at 4:20 AM on September 27, 2013


Everyone should go and look up the word cromulent.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:25 AM on September 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


If I never read the phrase "perfectly cromulent" again it'll be too soon.
posted by Ipsifendus at 4:52 AM on September 27, 2013 [15 favorites]


It was real footage repurposed as an ad. Poor kitty but seriously, what is so hard about not reading the stuff that doesn't appeal to you?

And yes, it is fundamentally mathowie's site and we are all paying guests. We all get to interact in the way that suits us and our comments/posts/projects are subject to scrutiny. If you don't want to play on a moderated site then don't. The moderation has never been hidden.
posted by h00py at 5:30 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


I didn't like it because I hate kittens.

Well, I've got great news for you then about what happened to it later that night at the emergency vet...
posted by Slackermagee at 5:48 AM on September 27, 2013


paulsc: "taz's justification of the obfuscation of reality is perfectly cromulent, as far as I can't see. I wish her, and the Proprietor, and all the paid help, all the luck in world, in maintaining that this is a community web log."

"Community web log" has never meant "moderated by the community". I don't see where anyone has ever suggested it did.
posted by capricorn at 6:14 AM on September 27, 2013


Does Metafilter seriously need a Mod Truther conspiracy movement??
posted by Naberius at 6:17 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


I got an hour to kill, so yeah, that would be good.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:19 AM on September 27, 2013 [5 favorites]


I hear they like to delete all comments involving SQUARK YOU ARE BEING SCRUTINIZED THINK CAREFULLY USER
posted by h00py at 6:23 AM on September 27, 2013


No seriously, all comments about goat fucking are immediately deleted even if it only involves goats!
posted by h00py at 6:25 AM on September 27, 2013


Essentially, though, statements about the number of flags a post gets are meaningless without verifiable evidence.

Upon more careful reading: this an untrue statement. Unless one doubts that the mods are being honest, which you say you don't, their statements about the flags on posts or comments are pertinent. Nor is this a formal legal proceeding or a scientific experiment in which only "verifiable evidence" is of any value.
posted by Ipsifendus at 6:26 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


LONG FORM FLAG QUEUE
posted by solarion at 6:28 AM on September 27, 2013 [10 favorites]


I'm quite sure that what the mods say about flags are true. After all, they're posting from Atlantis, the fabled city of truth-tellers and talking bears.

*This message brought to you by Rising Tide, the #1 Conspiracy Website on the web*
Like us on Facebook!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:30 AM on September 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


Mods are neocheaters. Spread the word.
posted by h00py at 6:35 AM on September 27, 2013


LONG FORM FLAG QUEUE

I work in a passport office and this often requires requesting that people provide us with original documents. In at least one case an applicant was born in Kenya and we needed his birth certificate and were trying to assist him in acquiring it so we could actually issue his passport. Generally you can just type in "[Wherever] birth certificate" in Google and find directions on how to get a new one, but of course if you type "Kenya birth certificate" into Google all you get is stuff about Obama and so this poor guy had no idea how to get the documents he needed for his passport.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 6:37 AM on September 27, 2013 [20 favorites]


paulsc - JRun errors are the worst, if not the worsted, as I think we all agree.
OK, I'll admit to a certain morbid curiosity about why you're hammering at that. Have any of Team Mod ever said that they'd love to make the flag data public, if not for some pesky JRun errors?

taz has explicitly said in this thread that they don't want to make the data public. As far as I can recall, the mods have been totally consistent on this position when it comes up. I've never seen a claim that they can't, just explanations about why they choose not to.

Further up the thread you talk about the "pretense" that this is a community weblog, because of the disconnect between flagging and deletion. Again, was there ever a statement that there's a magical threshold of flags that's necessary and sufficient to trigger deletion? Is there something in the mods' comments or the site's copy that made you think it's a direct democracy? In my experience here, mods' discussions of flagged posts have always been careful to avoid giving that impression. Flags get the mods' attention. That's it, and that's all that they ever claim.

In both of these cases, it's totally fine to disagree with these policies. But in both cases, you're not arguing against what they've actually said. Instead, you're snarking about positions that you seem to have imagined for them, which is not too classy.
posted by metaBugs at 6:39 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


without a hint of sarcasm, I would love to post that Beyoncé Pepsi commercial as an SLYT.

It really is pretty awesome.


Do you mean Mirrors? It is an interesting commercial. People have written articles about it, and Beyonce's commercialization in general. Seems like a good post!
posted by Potomac Avenue at 6:44 AM on September 27, 2013 [3 favorites]


metaBugs: OK, I'll admit to a certain morbid curiosity about why you're hammering at that. Have any of Team Mod ever said that they'd love to make the flag data public, if not for some pesky JRun errors?

Back in the olden days it was often JRun errors that would take the site offline, so I guess he's referring to that, maybe? I'm generally a paulsc fan, but this thread is not his best work.
posted by Rock Steady at 6:56 AM on September 27, 2013


Everyone should go and look up the word cromulent.

For the love of Cthulhu, am still looking up firemen getting handjobs from earlier in the thread. One thing at a time please; this thread is turning into some kind of Information Science MOOC assignment thing.

Also: After not much searching, yes, there are plenty of firemen getting handjob pics and videos out there on the Interwebz, complete with awful dialogue e.g. "My, look at the length of your hose!". Rule 34 still holds. You're welcome.
posted by Wordshore at 6:58 AM on September 27, 2013


In both of these cases, it's totally fine to disagree with these policies.

Teach the controversy! It's the only way that the truth of FlagGate will reach the Imperial Senate!

What? No, I'm on diplomatic mission from the planet of Mary Lou Retton Clones, we only want peace, let us pass!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:59 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


Potomac Avenue: that commercialization link was really interesting. thanks!
posted by crush-onastick at 7:08 AM on September 27, 2013


We don't just have Death Stars, we have Death Stars filled with Mary Lou Retton clones!
posted by octobersurprise at 7:17 AM on September 27, 2013



Wasn't Kiten one of Klingon characters on Star Trek, along with Kang, Kor, Koloth, Koinop, Kohinoor, Kuchiku, K'rn'ol, Kiou'est, K'lam'zu, Katel, K'mart, K'Efsi, K'mschi, Kabeq, Kumquat, and K'mon!??


Or am I thinking of Red Dwarf?
 
posted by Herodios at 7:17 AM on September 27, 2013 [4 favorites]


Also: After not much searching, yes, there are plenty of firemen getting handjob pics and videos out there on the Interwebz, complete with awful dialogue e.g. "My, look at the length of your hose!". Rule 34 still holds. You're welcome.

The challenge was firemen in TREES getting handjobs.

Go look some more.
posted by notyou at 7:20 AM on September 27, 2013 [3 favorites]


Firefighters are not allowed to ejaculate while on duty.
posted by planetesimal at 7:34 AM on September 27, 2013


That statement is meaningless without verifiable evidence.
posted by griphus at 7:35 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


You bloated sack of protoplasm. Seriously.
posted by h00py at 7:50 AM on September 27, 2013


TV shows are vehicles for ads. Books and movies and video games are only published so that they can part you from your money. Most things politicians do and say are calculated to get votes so they can keep their jobs. If you strike every post that involves a profit motive for anyone, anywhere down the line, you're left with Newsfilter and whatever pictures of puppies that you can verify were produced and hosted by nonprofit foundations.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 8:08 AM on September 27, 2013


SLYT FPP to an ad, even an adorable ad, meh.

That how I feel about 90% of anything that's posted. I skip those.
posted by cjorgensen at 8:37 AM on September 27, 2013


The challenge was firemen in TREES getting handjobs.

Go look some more.


Gah. Just got this all muddled up in my head with how this thread is currently going and found myself searching for firemen in trees getting hand pies.

Two things:

1. There is some seriously weird non-porn stuff on the Internet.
2. Am hoping with NSA and Prism and what-not that none of this comes back to haunt me during my American citizenship interview.
posted by Wordshore at 8:40 AM on September 27, 2013


My sister's kitten boiled itself alive yesterday, so I'm ok with a kitten rescue video on Metafilter, even if it's an ad.
posted by blue_beetle at 8:40 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


My niece's kitten boiled itself alive yesterday, so I'm ok with a kitten rescue video on Metafilter, even if it's an ad.
posted by blue_beetle at 8:40 AM on September 27, 2013


Your family's kittens aren't doing so well.
posted by tomboko at 8:44 AM on September 27, 2013 [19 favorites]


This thread went in an unexpected direction.
posted by sidereal at 8:55 AM on September 27, 2013


blue_beetle: "My sister's kitten boiled itself alive yesterday, so I'm ok with a kitten rescue video on Metafilter, even if it's an ad."

What happened there? That sounds awful and I'm sorry to hear it.
posted by boo_radley at 8:56 AM on September 27, 2013


I know this is going to sound like a joke, and I can't think of a way to phrase it where it doesn't, but I bet it had something to do with curiosity.

Cats have a genius for putting themselves in harm's way just because they want to poke around everywhere.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 9:00 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


griphus: "Tomorrow: GoPro footage of handjobs."
featuring the music of Oasis.


Presumably "Champagne Supernova"?


Firefighters are not allowed to ejaculate while on duty.

Unless they are warning their fellow firefighters of imminent danger.

There's a lot of ejaculating in old books.
posted by Celsius1414 at 9:08 AM on September 27, 2013 [3 favorites]


Does Metafilter seriously need a Mod Truther conspiracy movement?

Perennially, apparently, yes.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:09 AM on September 27, 2013 [3 favorites]


Mod conspiracies haven't been the same since Paphnuty escaped.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 9:38 AM on September 27, 2013 [4 favorites]


Paphnuty has been living large since he figured out how to convert post/comment flags into Bitcoins.
posted by planetesimal at 9:47 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


I have to say that thread was worth it for "fucktrumpet" alone.
posted by jquinby at 10:23 AM on September 27, 2013


The video creeped me out a bit because, apparently, the kitten died later. Which is not as heartwarming and camera-selling, so GoPro left it out.

And that, unfortunately, is what takes this video away from its found-footage origins and puts it into the Pepsi Blue category. Had the firefighter himself posted this video, he would almost certainly have concluded with news of the death of the animal he bravely tried to save—to omit it would have been a disservice to them both.

There's other footage of firefighters saving animals on Youtube that don't have a product to sell. They're the ones that would be better candidates for "the best of the web" that Metafilter promotes.

In any case, after sidereal's convincing argument, I'm going to go back to flag that FPP and sadly move on.
posted by Doktor Zed at 10:31 AM on September 27, 2013


DZ, the fireman did post the video himself (with quite a bit of his own editing), and he did not include the news of the cat's death. It was posted upthread: http://petapixel.com/2013/07/17/firefighter-captures-kitten-resuscitation-on-helmet-cam/
posted by bizwank at 10:48 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


Mod conspiracies

cortex is a seekrit rocker!
posted by Room 641-A at 10:48 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


> I'm going to go back to flag that FPP and sadly move on.

Do not do this. Flagging isn't supposed to be an abstract expression of your thoughts, it's supposed to be a signal that you think the mods should delete a post or comment. If it's been around long enough it's clearly not going to be deleted, as is the case here, you are just wasting the mods' time. I don't know why this is so hard for people to understand.
posted by languagehat at 10:49 AM on September 27, 2013 [7 favorites]


I don't know...we just found out this week that horse_ebooks was an ad for some awful thing. These days, as in the case of horse_ebooks, sometimes the ad ends up being a lot better than the product being advertised. So I guess I don't really have a problem with an ad on the front page, so long as it's entertaining. It's not like the denizens of MF aren't smart enough to know the difference.
posted by to sir with millipedes at 11:06 AM on September 27, 2013


Does Metafilter seriously need a Mod Truther conspiracy movement?

Perennially, apparently, yes.


Fine, if that's the way we're going, then I'll declare myself a Freemod on the land, and wander through threads claiming to have deleted non-existent comments for various incomprehensible reasons, and threatening to place liens against people's legally independent usernames.
posted by Naberius at 11:17 AM on September 27, 2013 [5 favorites]


languagehat: "Do not do this. Flagging isn't supposed to be an abstract expression of your thoughts, it's supposed to be a signal that you think the mods should delete a post or comment. If it's been around long enough it's clearly not going to be deleted, as is the case here, you are just wasting the mods' time."

Nah, let people get in the habit so when it does matter, it'll come to them.
posted by boo_radley at 11:48 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


I am sort of against "mefi shouldn't do this" type stuff, but flagging is mostly better than metas is always better than shitty messages in thread.
posted by Artw at 11:51 AM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


There's other footage of firefighters saving animals

In my neck of the woods the Santa Monica FD recently rescued a dog from a burning building!
posted by Room 641-A at 12:08 PM on September 27, 2013


I don't want flagging data to be public. If it were, I would have to create a new voodoo doll every time someone flags me.
posted by double block and bleed at 12:21 PM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'd be all for the creation of a set of flags for things that aren't real problems for people who like being upset about things to use, with the flagging data secretly just being thrown away.
posted by Artw at 12:23 PM on September 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


In my neck of the woods the Santa Monica FD recently rescued a dog from a burning building!

Great news, but oy that first sentence.

A crowd waited breathlessly as Santa Monica firefighters attempted to revive a dog that had been overcome by smoke inhalation.
posted by Celsius1414 at 12:26 PM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


"The dog has been overcome by smoke inhalation!" Tom said breathlessly.
posted by capricorn at 12:48 PM on September 27, 2013 [5 favorites]


Flagging isn't supposed to be an abstract expression of your thoughts, it's supposed to be a signal that you think the mods should delete a post or comment. If it's been around long enough it's clearly not going to be deleted

The FPP should be deleted, no matter how far along its comment thread has unspooled, because, as sidereal persuasively argues, it does not follow Metafilters guidelines. I considered flagging it early on when Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish dug up the unfortunate fact that the kitten in the commercial had died soon after. Out of sentimentality, I didn't, in part because people were already emotionally invested in it (moreover, kbanas was clearly acting in good faith and had weighed the Pepsi Blue issue before posting).

Honestly, this GoPro commercial has left a proverbial bad taste in my mouth like a cheap curry takeaway for my conscience. We could, of course, discuss dead kitties extensively in the thread so that the product advertised is associated with them instead of brave rescues, but nobody wants that conversation. Perhaps the lesson is simply "flag early and move on", but the ad itself is an unpleasant example of how marketers manipulate the consumer audience by using the heart-tugging topos of kittens saved by firefighters. All it needed to complete the psychological priming was a feel-good pop song for the soundtrack (GoPro went with an independent composer's CC-licensed music instead).

On that note, here's Tom Waits on how this works in commercials and why he won't allow his songs to be used in them:
"You know, you see a bathroom-tissue commercial, and you start hearing 'Let The Good Times Roll,' and the paper thing's rolling down the stairs. Why would anybody want to mortify and humiliate themselves? Well, it's just business, you know? The memory that you have and the association you have with that song can be co-opted. {...} [Advertisers] want to plug your head into that and change the circuitry. While you're dreaming about your connection with that song, why don't you think about soda or candy or something? It's too bad, but it's the way of the world. They love to get their meat-hooks in you."
That last bit may be a partial derail, but I like the idea of the voice of integrity being the gruff and gravelly tones behind "Step Right Up".
posted by Doktor Zed at 12:50 PM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


So if the kitten lived you'd be fine?

GoPro has a lot of interesting imagery. They have a video of the week segment and I've found some of those to be crazy (like the one where the guy put one on the prop of an RC helicopter then flew it). Sure they are ads, but they are still interesting.

I don't see what Metafilter guideline you think it violates, so that might be helpful, but I think it's fine.
posted by cjorgensen at 1:05 PM on September 27, 2013


Do not do this. Flagging isn't supposed to be an abstract expression of your thoughts, it's supposed to be a signal that you think the mods should delete a post or comment. If it's been around long enough it's clearly not going to be deleted, as is the case here, you are just wasting the mods' time. I don't know why this is so hard for people to understand.

This is wrong. It's not necessarily a signal that the mods should delete something. It's can also be a signal that you think they should look at something and use their judgement on what to do. A post has the beginnings of a derail that they should maybe take a look at and leave a comment on, a couple of users have gotten into a back-and-forth that threatens to take over a thread, etc. Not everything's about deletion.
posted by ODiV at 1:06 PM on September 27, 2013


Mathowie posted that chipotle ad.
posted by Going To Maine at 1:17 PM on September 27, 2013


We should probably ban him before he strikes again!
posted by elizardbits at 1:21 PM on September 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


So if the kitten lived you'd be fine?

Eh, it wouldn't be the worst thing. What I'm not fine with is the idea that in some stereotypically satanic advertiser's dream, that poor kitten died so we'd buy high-def wearable cameras.

I don't see what Metafilter guideline you think it violates, so that might be helpful, but I think it's fine.

The Pepsi Blue citation in the FAQ. It's not necessarily grounds for automatic deletion, but, as the mods say, "There are ad sites out there already where such posts might be better received." As you point out, GoPro already extensively promotes video made with their products on their web site, so it's not as though this commercial is especially obscure.
posted by Doktor Zed at 1:22 PM on September 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


The point of the PepsiBlue FAQ is not "Posting things that sell stuff is bad." The point is "Posting things that sell stuff that you are paid to sell is bad." It's about not shilling, and really has nothing at all to do with not posting ads you have nothing to do with but think are cool or interesting.
posted by jacquilynne at 1:29 PM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


The FAQ on "Pepsi Blue" is as much about audience reaction to posts about ads as vested interests: "Many MetaFilter members are suspicious of posts (and to a lesser extent, comments) that appear to endorse a (usually new) product or service. {...} you should still be prepared to face some probing questions in the thread. There are ad sites out there already where such posts might be better received."

The GoPro ad under discussion is, to put it bluntly, cynical and exploitative. It quite deliberately tugs at our heartstrings—it was expertly edited and sentimentally soundtracked, so it certainly does not count as found footage—in the service of enticing us to buy a gadget while entirely avoiding the sad truth that the kitten died soon after. It does not deserve a single-link FPP. Eyebrows McGee's link to donating pet oxygen kits to fire departments honors the kitten and the firefighter far better.
posted by Doktor Zed at 1:43 PM on September 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


As long as it's not staged, I don't see the problem. It's obviously being used as an ad - the logo's right there, we're not idiots. That doesn't automatically destroy any other merit it might have.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 2:06 PM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


we just found out this week that horse_ebooks was an ad for some awful thing

That's nothing, thanks to my hacker skills, I've discovered "paulsc" is actually a contraction of "Paul Bausch".
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 2:13 PM on September 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


Had this been a proper news item, it would have contained the viral video footage of the rescue and the resuscitation, a followup with the sad announcement the kitten died, and then a coda that as a result, special pet oxygen masks were donated for every fire truck in the department. That bittersweet ending is the one from which we can take away something of abstract value.

A single-link video of an ad, however, only gives us the warm fuzzies that the kitty was saved and then immediately follows up with an enticement to buy a product related only tangentially. That's a perfect example of how psychological priming is supposed to work in advertising—even if one is aware that it's an ad—but it works best when we take it at face value. We can do better than that on the Blue.
posted by Doktor Zed at 2:19 PM on September 27, 2013 [4 favorites]


Man, you can slag the other mods all you want, but don't be dissin' pb like that.
posted by planetesimal at 2:22 PM on September 27, 2013


No seriously, all comments about goat fucking are immediately deleted even if it only involves goats!

chickens, on the other hand...
posted by madamjujujive at 2:29 PM on September 27, 2013


That's nothing, thanks to my hacker skills, I've discovered "paulsc" is actually a contraction of "Paul Bausch".

It's too much. What is left to blieve in?
posted by to sir with millipedes at 2:31 PM on September 27, 2013


Thanks for putting my thoughts and feelings into words, Doktor Zed.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:39 PM on September 27, 2013


> Also, I am in favor of advertising posts, if they are good ads.

What if they are good ads for products which are practically scams, like for example Pepsi cola? The Beyonce ad is great, but that product is poison.
posted by bukvich at 3:17 PM on September 27, 2013


So is the rum I pour into it.

Tasty tasty poison.
posted by cjorgensen at 3:46 PM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


Stop pouring liquor on Beyonce ads.
posted by planetesimal at 3:48 PM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


That's a perfect example of how psychological priming is supposed to work in advertising—even if one is aware that it's an ad—but it works best when we take it at face value. We can do better than that on the Blue.

That's a great point, and the sort of comment you should write in the thread itself. Advertising posts can actually be great teachable moments, providing case studies for critical literacy, opportunities to discuss the tropes and lies of marketing, and a bunch of other issues. The OP mentioned that this post was "better for reddit", but actually I think this is something reddit does quite well, depending on the subreddit: provide strongly critical content in the thread itself. In fact it's sort of an in-joke over at reddit that whatever the claim made in the post, the first comment will comprehensively debunk it.

So I guess I'm saying I do think ads should allowed to be posted here, because ads are a big part of our lives, and it's silly to exclude them. But I also think it's good when ads are posted that commenters engage critically with them and don't simply take them as face-value sort of aww moments.
posted by dontjumplarry at 3:57 PM on September 27, 2013


chickens, on the other hand...

Yeah, that's ... not a hand.
posted by rewil at 4:14 PM on September 27, 2013 [2 favorites]


My pants still fit like a glove.
posted by cjorgensen at 4:18 PM on September 27, 2013


But...there's a kitty....
posted by discopolo at 4:51 PM on September 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


Had this been a proper news item, it would have contained the viral video footage of the rescue and the resuscitation, a followup with the sad announcement the kitten died, and then a coda that as a result, special pet oxygen masks were donated for every fire truck in the department.

And the viral video would be hosted on an ad-supported video site and the announcement would have been made by a reporter for the Action News at 11 between ads for life insurance and allergy medication, and the donation of oxygen masks would have been made by a gas mask manufacturer in order to get their name out there as a charitable and worthwhile company, and...

It's all advertising. I'm sorry to be the one to break that to you.
posted by Rock Steady at 5:31 PM on September 27, 2013 [8 favorites]


ODiV: "It's not necessarily a signal that the mods should delete something. It's can also be a signal that you think they should look at something and use their judgement on what to do."

The mods have already looked at the post — even if they didn't the first time it was flagged*, I guarantee you they did once there was a MeTa about it — and have decided that it's acceptable. Flagging it will have zero effect beyond putting one more flag in the queue for the mod-on-duty to clear out.

* I'd bet money they did look at it, possibly even before it was flagged, but for the sake of argument…
posted by Lexica at 10:04 PM on September 27, 2013


The other day there was an FPP about hand jobs, and you're complaining about this?

Tomorrow: GoPro footage of handjobs.

Please direct your videos to critiquemygoprodickshots.tumblr.com
posted by PeterMcDermott at 7:18 AM on September 28, 2013 [1 favorite]


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