A boon for the fumble-fingered! January 29, 2014 8:11 AM   Subscribe

A small pony request: we have the edit button for comments we make on AskMefi, would it be possible to add an edit capability to Memail messages? 'Cause sometimes, my fat fingers don't go where I want them to go....
posted by easily confused to Feature Requests at 8:11 AM (33 comments total)

Nope, that wouldn't make sense; by the time you've sent the mefimail, you've...sent it, and the other person has it. Changing the content of the thing in their inbox after the fact would be odd; if there's a serious error, just send 'em another one real quick saying "oops, that should have read x".

I say this as someone who sends that sort of followup message on more than rare occasions. I feel you.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:14 AM on January 29, 2014 [1 favorite]


No, sorry, a MeFi Mail message is more like an email than a comment. Many people get MeFi Mail alerts via email and receive the message as soon as you click send. You can click the Preview button to see how your message is going to look before you send it. You might go that route and double-check things before you click Send.
posted by pb (staff) at 8:15 AM on January 29, 2014


Preview option sort of is the edit button. I get that people feel really ootchy when they've typoed something, but a typo going to one person is a different level of magnitude problem than one going to the whole website.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 8:16 AM on January 29, 2014


Pooh. In that case, can you teach my fingers to go where I WANT them to go, as opposed to where THEY feel like wandering?!?
posted by easily confused at 8:17 AM on January 29, 2014




I pre-typo all my MeFi Mail messages. Nothing huge, just a misspelling or two. That way, I just get it over with.

Similarly, I always buy a cup of coffee (that has a very loose lid) right after shopping for white shirts. Same basic idea.
posted by lampshade at 8:54 AM on January 29, 2014 [3 favorites]


Pooh. In that case, can you teach my fingers to go where I WANT them to go, as opposed to where THEY feel like wandering?!?

Have you and your fingers thought about counseling together? I think it may help.
posted by hal_c_on at 9:12 AM on January 29, 2014 [2 favorites]


Therapy having been suggested, I'll counter with Dump the Maladroit Fingers Already. Either that or lawyer up.
posted by GenjiandProust at 10:41 AM on January 29, 2014 [2 favorites]


What's a typo?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:57 AM on January 29, 2014


It's a fancy font.
posted by So You're Saying These Are Pants? at 11:08 AM on January 29, 2014


It's short for Take Your Pony Outside.
posted by GenjiandProust at 11:39 AM on January 29, 2014 [4 favorites]


If Aliena's lets the crying baby stay, why can't my pony?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:41 AM on January 29, 2014


Can we also have an edit feature for conversations that happen at IRL meetups?
posted by aubilenon at 11:47 AM on January 29, 2014 [6 favorites]


Can we also have an edit feature for conversations that happen at IRL meetups?

Oh yes. And mod attention. I want to hear cortex's voice boom out "For god's sake, GenjiandProust, get away from the guacamole!" It would make things much nicer.
posted by GenjiandProust at 11:57 AM on January 29, 2014 [3 favorites]


Finally, an opportunity for quidnunc kid, ventriloquist-impressionist and guacamole addict, to profit from his criminal compulsions!
posted by the quidnunc kid at 12:08 PM on January 29, 2014 [3 favorites]


Pooh. In that case, can you teach my fingers to go where I WANT them to go, as opposed to where THEY feel like wandering?!?

Strangely today's BC comic is a fitting response to this.
.
.
.
Never before, and hopefully never again will I write such a thing.
posted by edgeways at 12:26 PM on January 29, 2014 [2 favorites]


write your messages in a text editor
hit save
have a small cup of tea
re-read
amend
copy-paste message into Memail
finally hit send

You will still get mistakes, but now you'll have a useless saved text document to go with that.
posted by 0 answers at 12:53 PM on January 29, 2014 [1 favorite]


I've been assuming that all the people with autocorrect errors were posting on mobile devices, but Safari does that now. I have to radically reexamine my view of how aerobically conditioned MetaFilter is.
posted by running order squabble fest at 12:58 PM on January 29, 2014


I've been assuming that all the people with autocorrect errors were posting on mobile devices, but Safari does that now

That drove me nuts - you can turn it off in the keyboard system prefs. Under the "text" radio button uncheck the "Correct spelling automatically" button.
posted by Packed Lunch at 1:03 PM on January 29, 2014 [2 favorites]


> Strangely today's BC comic is a fitting response to this.

My god, B.C. is still around? The things I learn at MetaFilter!
posted by languagehat at 1:08 PM on January 29, 2014 [1 favorite]


Based on today's offering, I am going to vote #1 quidnunc kid. Guac and ventriloquism = good things.
posted by frecklefaerie at 1:10 PM on January 29, 2014 [2 favorites]


Since Mason Mastroianni took over, B.C. is actually kind of a step up from what it was previously. Or at least it was for a while, I haven't looked at it regularly. But they introduced a new character (Wolf) that I liked a lot.
posted by Wolfdog at 1:38 PM on January 29, 2014


Wait a minute - languagehat is still around??? Oh MeFi, you never cease to enterform and intain!
posted by the quidnunc kid at 1:53 PM on January 29, 2014


Hold on a grommit - quidnunc kid, still not banned?! Oh MeFi, you never pause to astonish and disappoint!
posted by the quidnunc kid at 2:13 PM on January 29, 2014


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posted by spitbull at 2:24 PM on January 29, 2014 [7 favorites]


I would be happier with a button that adds ASCII snowflakes.
posted by Juso No Thankyou at 4:18 PM on January 29, 2014 [1 favorite]


If Aliena's lets the crying baby stay, why can't my pony?

Brandon, I've got no qualms with the recent trend (if two is a trend) of you dropping references to this incident into Meta threads apropos of nothing, but please: Alinea. A-L-I-N-E-A.

Just use this handy rhyme if you have trouble:

"n" before "e"
Including when we
Are not telling fables
'bout babies at tables.
posted by SpiffyRob at 5:47 AM on January 30, 2014 [1 favorite]


What might make sense is a 30-second "undo send" option, similar to what Gmail allows. That's a really useful feature. Obviously the memail would only end up in the recipient's box and any notification sent after that time.

Of course writing the message in a text editor and then pasting it in is always an option, but psychologically there's something about having clicked the Send button that just highlights all the errors in your message.
posted by shivohum at 6:16 PM on January 30, 2014


Message recall or post send editing has profound social implications because it is never a perfect mechanism with absolute assurance that the original wasn't intercepted a million different ways, then intrigue takes over yer life. This bug is the feature of the Internet's whole existence so recall is just unfit for email and by extension me mail.
posted by lordaych at 6:38 PM on January 30, 2014


Like I've successfully recalled a message before in a work exchange email setting but the "recall success!" message was triggered by an admin (not the recipient) who knew about it and danced around trying to read it. Mostly successful except my acknowledgment was "from" the admin by mistake. Perfect crime foiled but this really is the "information wants to be free" cliche at work, the genie is out the bottle and technology is smearing your information all over the place in transit, memory, temporary folders, etc. Encryption was the promise to solve that but the NSA has different idears
posted by lordaych at 6:43 PM on January 30, 2014


If the admin had any basic scripting skills their perfect crime would've gone off without a hitch. More intrigue, I sent them a message once and felt bad and recalled it. I got the "recall success" message but will always assume that's bs, and weeks later they started leaking bits and pieces. Of what I sent them, so not crazy drama but you can how it escalates and here the bigger issue is shenanigans and enabling impulsivity.
posted by lordaych at 6:46 PM on January 30, 2014


I do not mean to be dismissive geek guy by saying "impulsivity" as I'm using it in the driest manner and am a huge guilty party myself, and you might be requesting a 5-10 minute wait between comments if I keep up these 3-4 comment bursts, but I guess you could say they are impulsively uttered pieces of a larger thought process that would otherwise be a single wall of text without little road markers in between. That's my jam, probably originating from my BBS 'n IRC origin story.

But I just mean it in the sense of, fat fingered or not, you do see the mistakes after you click "Send" so the problem isn't the composition of the original email, but the editing process afterward and timing the delivery of the message after editing has transpired. Murphy's Law anecdotes abound, but the more time you spend editing (I suck at this myself) the fewer mistakes you will end up sending, leading to a reductio ad absurdum of sorts where any message long enough to demand editing is probably going to have some little glitch that you wish the recipient could un-see, even after you've post-send-edited it, and ultimately you're kind of asking for the ability to change the past or thoughts and impressions you've passed to others. Not literally, but at the end of the day what is the fundamental problem and how does it get solved? Shit, I just said "at the end of the day" and then sent this without cutting that.
posted by lordaych at 6:59 PM on January 30, 2014


And I totally understand the mechanism of "once you send it, you see things easier" despite my "Murphy's Law" hand-wave, and that's exactly what underlies my comment bursts -- "oh and another thing" because my train of thought isn't moving through all of the normal paces until I've uttered bits and pieces of it, and if I don't realize how long and rambling it's going to be once I've thought myself to the end, and don't know where the end is, and just want to make a comment, but a few minutes later think about what I just said and then re-think and express a twist on it, I don't know how to finish this

OUT!
posted by lordaych at 7:03 PM on January 30, 2014 [1 favorite]


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