Should Debates (and other unique events) be diverted to Fanfare? March 10, 2016 8:24 PM   Subscribe

Currently things like political debates (and similar unique events, such as Apple announcements) tend to play out in related threads on the Blue. Since that just adds to (usually) already-long threads, wouldn't it make sense to require that dedicated posts be made on the Purple? (I'm not alone in thinking so.)
posted by ChurchHatesTucker to Etiquette/Policy at 8:24 PM (359 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

Hmm, we've been a touch bearish about putting events on FanFare, and I'm not sure that this is a great idea. The different subsites have different rules (and customs) of discourse, and elections are a little rowdy for FanFare. Curious to hear what people think, though.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 8:29 PM on March 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


Debates make (at least a little) sense for FanFare insofar as they are in fact televised episodes of the most preposterous reality series that the US has to offer.
posted by dersins at 8:31 PM on March 10, 2016 [30 favorites]


Putting them on FanFare could be a nice way of preventing the election-related threads from ballooning with one-off-type comments, a lot of which are confusing once memories of the debate start to fade.
posted by sallybrown at 8:41 PM on March 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


The different subsites have different rules (and customs) of discourse

Hrm. What differences do you see b/t Blue and Purple?
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 8:42 PM on March 10, 2016


Yes, put them on FanFare! It's super irritating that (a) debate liveblogging can show up in any of the six-ish active election threads, seemingly at random, and (b) when it does, the nominal topic of the thread gets buried.

Are the debate threads really rowdier than the Game of Thrones threads on FanFare?
posted by zeptoweasel at 8:44 PM on March 10, 2016 [21 favorites]


The debates are so episodic that it kind of makes sense, and it's weird how debate threads are just declared halfway through these already huge threads about different topics entirely. But, I do enjoy posting stuff like the State of the Union to the main page to draw in a wider audience. That's once a year though, not every week or so.

I think if we are going to do something to push this content off to a subsite like this we might as well...

*pours Cortex a stiff drink.*

...just go ahead and do the politics.metafilter.com idea.
posted by Drinky Die at 8:45 PM on March 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


yes, put on FanFare.

(a) debate liveblogging can show up in any of the six-ish active election threads, seemingly at random, and (b) when it does, the nominal topic of the thread gets buried.


exactly. It's hard to tell which is debate thread.
posted by zutalors! at 8:47 PM on March 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


(Even if you just have it up for American election season. Something Awful has done that, one subforum ((Your Candidate Sucks)) to put all the election stuff in that I assume is going away when this is done.)
posted by Drinky Die at 8:47 PM on March 10, 2016


It's hard to tell which is debate thread.

This has come up repeatedly recently.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 8:51 PM on March 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Yeah, when we have a debate thread popping up in a post about a Bad Lip Reading sketch, it's a sign that we need to do things differently.
posted by teponaztli at 8:53 PM on March 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


Two debate threads in it now, iirc.
posted by Drinky Die at 8:54 PM on March 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


... that now is the thread for TWO debates.
posted by rabbitrabbit at 8:54 PM on March 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Jinx
posted by rabbitrabbit at 8:54 PM on March 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


If I followed them to FanFare would that make me a fan of the debates? Because I've been trying to maintain my self-respect by regarding myself more as "horrified on-looker" and I don't know if I can give up the small comfort that provides.
posted by benito.strauss at 8:54 PM on March 10, 2016 [14 favorites]


...but then I don't get to set off my DEBATE THREAD DECLARED alarm!

Kidding. I agree that the debates should be in Fanfare.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:55 PM on March 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


Obviously we'd have to preserve the no-spoiler rule, for those who are watching ahead and already know how it ends. Also, it'd be good if the people reading the comic books would not divulge any important plot points before they're revealed on-screen.
posted by koeselitz at 8:55 PM on March 10, 2016 [36 favorites]


If I followed them to FanFare would that make me a fan of the debates? Because I've been trying to maintain my self-respect by regarding myself more as "horrified on-looker" and I don't know if I can give up the small comfort that provides.

Heh, yeah. When I think of stuff to add to Fanfare I think of stuff like sports or games. Stuff that is about fans being fans. Half of these debates are just hatewatches.
posted by Drinky Die at 8:56 PM on March 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


I like this idea -- and it might help keep the madness to a single thread for the mods.
posted by mochapickle at 8:56 PM on March 10, 2016


It's going to be a long, long American election season, and although (as I understand it) Matt was traditionally quite strongly against doing anything special to accommodate the excesses that it brings, it might be time to revisit the idea. It does come up every four years, and this year feels a LOT more busy in terms of the election-related threads.

(I personally think it's fine, everything is fine, and I don't think Fanfare is a good match, but I understand the impulse.)

Spitballing: maybe a special tag (maybe admin-only applicable) that we could follow/use, or something like that? That would be the smallest change for maximum effect, maybe. A politics.metafilter.com subdomain or something would be fun, but it would be a Major Change in the Way Of Metafilter.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:00 PM on March 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


> Yeah, when we have a debate thread popping up in a post about a Bad Lip Reading sketch, it's a sign that we need to do things differently.

I am (predictably) on Team Whimsy here and find the practice of debate thread declarations utterly charming, especially when debate thread shows up somewhere unexpected.

but I admit that probably in this case the concerns of Team Whimsy should not be taken particularly seriously.
posted by You Can't Tip a Buick at 9:00 PM on March 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


I endorse this, but would make a plea to fellow mefites that if so, we follow the rules of FanFare: we are talking about the televised event, not Round 1,356 of Why Some Mefites Prefer Bernie Sanders And Others Prefer Hillary Clinton.
posted by corb at 9:03 PM on March 10, 2016 [31 favorites]


Right, I've been keeping a tab open of the thread we discussed the Dem debate in, and when the R one started there wasn't much talking, so I looked at people's profile who are usually chatty to see where they were commenting so I'd know where the debate was being discussed. I guess I could have searched the Election2016 tag and checked every recent post, but neither of these seem optimal.
posted by DynamiteToast at 9:03 PM on March 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I am not a fan of moving the debate threads to FanFare AT ALL. Even though ideological and political things semi-regularly work their way into threads on FF, by and large, that is still not what it's about there. I kinda like having part of the site that's mostly about pop culture piffle. It's an entirely different vibe there, and because of that, it's increasingly where I spend my time.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:03 PM on March 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


Wasn't one of the rules when FanFare was created that the three wouldn't go up until the episode was over, specifically so the live-blogging thing didn't happen as much?

I think they should stay where they are.
posted by Night_owl at 9:07 PM on March 10, 2016


It's an entirely different vibe there

Part of the problem is that discussing the debate can quickly become a much different vibe than the thread surrounding it. We just had 4 debates in 7 days, should a new FPP be made for each?

I do get the reticence to put them on FanFare, but it's an interesting thought.
posted by DynamiteToast at 9:08 PM on March 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


Although I agree with the culture mismatch arguments about putting politics on FanFare, the main thing that makes me skeptical of the idea is that I don't think anyone's exactly a fan of American politics right now, and also maybe the idea of fannishness in politics is just generally something not to encourage.
posted by You Can't Tip a Buick at 9:11 PM on March 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


I think putting them on FanFare is a great idea!
posted by rabbitrabbit at 9:11 PM on March 10, 2016


I should clarify my position: I am sometimes driven to the point of existential despair by how ugly the Election threads have been getting lately. I understand it's impossible for mods to keep on top of because there's simply too much vitriol, but it is saddening. At the same time, the debate mini threads within threads are often much kinder, and more shared-suffering. I would like a way to be in those without having to see people verbally knifing each other.
posted by corb at 9:15 PM on March 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


The debates may nominally be a "show," but really what we're butting up against is the age-old problem MeFi has where the folks here sometimes want to live blog/discuss current events as they happen, even though that's not really what the site is built to do. Shoveling some contentious politics off of the blue and onto a subsite meant for pop culture fandom is a really clumsy kludge for that.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:16 PM on March 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


> Heh, yeah. When I think of stuff to add to Fanfare I think of stuff like sports or games. Stuff that is about fans being fans. Half of these debates are just hatewatches.

Not me, but I've got some friends who are really sports-obsessed, and they know a thing or two about the hate-watch.
posted by benito.strauss at 9:18 PM on March 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Dallas sucks.
posted by Drinky Die at 9:20 PM on March 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


FanFare, since it's about a TV show. Or just squash the chatty live-blog thing altogether and mod-note-redirect people to chat. Since that's really what it turns into anyway. I mean, I like the chatty debate threads as much as the next person, but they do directly go against the guideline of at least trying to avoid live-blog newsfilter on the blue.
posted by ctmf at 9:32 PM on March 10, 2016


I so agree with this and have often wished it was so.... Just it was because it can be hard to find the current "cool kids spot" especially when on a mobile. My brother snagged a ticket to tonight's debate and the craziness he has witnessed (his words as a STAUNCH republican who is voting for Hillary with gusto this year) had me searching like crazy for where to share. I was at a rehearsal of the most glorious, choral adaptation of Walt Whitman's 'Leaves of Grass : Calamus' at the same time while sneaking looks at my phone to read his texts. The irony was not lost on me.... Let's do this please!!
posted by pearlybob at 9:35 PM on March 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


too much vitriol...verbally knifing each other

I've been in all those threads, they can get tense, but I really don't think they rise to this level.

Just a few thoughts:
-I'm not sure how many debates there are going to be from here out. At least a few party vs. party debates, yes. Perhaps enough to make this switch. But not that many.
-Moving debates to FanFare is not going to move all political news and conversation to FanFare. There are going to be plenty of election-related links getting FPP'd without them being debates. So, as a solution to the tense atmosphere politics can bring with it, it would be an incomplete one.
-I understand the FanFare vibe is mostly nonpolitical but at the same time I think you could just easily avoid debate threads, just like you avoid threads for shows you don't watch. There's no real way it could pollute the experience of anyone who isn't interested.
-If the issue is just being confused about which is the current debate thread, prehaps a little more mod steering or internal discipline could fix that without making a major change to the approach.

On the whole I think I would be happy to see debate threads go to Fan Fare. I would expect the effect to be that they're more like liveblogs and would wind down as the show winds down, and would not extend into a lengthier, fuller discussion as they do now. I'd still expect to see periodic discussions of election issues on the Blue, for everyone that is not going to FanFare and everyone who is not watching debates (a very sane choice just now). So, for debates only, this might make some sense, but we should keep expectations realistic that it's not going to make the election, or the tough issues it raises, go away entirely.
posted by Miko at 9:38 PM on March 10, 2016


I think the problem with debate threads on the blue is that the mods' (very understandable) reluctance to have multiple related threads going on simultaneously has meant that we get these weird megathreads that are difficult to find and that switch topics after already being a few days old, as new events happen that the community wants to discuss.

FanFare is one solution - another might be to tweak the rules on the blue a bit. For these sorts of ongoing, live, events that generate massive interest and discussion, the new policy could be that a) new threads are allowed more often (maybe once every 48 hours for something like election season or the world cup). but also b) threads are closed more quickly (with a link to the new thread), so that there's only one open thread at any one time.
posted by kickingtheground at 10:08 PM on March 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


> ...just go ahead and do the politics.metafilter.com idea.

Entering this thread (and exiting it immediately afterwords) for the sole purpose of saying:

oh god please no
posted by brennen at 10:46 PM on March 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


Please do not put them on FanFare because FanFare threads never close.
posted by MoonOrb at 10:53 PM on March 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


I'm telling you guys, if you ignore the sweat Nixon totally won that. I will not let this go!
posted by Drinky Die at 10:56 PM on March 10, 2016 [8 favorites]


This thread should definitely be tagged election2016. I really don't understand why it wasn't.
posted by Quonab at 11:07 PM on March 10, 2016


Please do not put them on FanFare because FanFare threads never close.

Repeated, because I do not have a +100 favorites button.

For these sorts of ongoing, live, events that generate massive interest and discussion, the new policy could be that a) new threads are allowed more often (maybe once every 48 hours for something like election season or the world cup). but also b) threads are closed more quickly (with a link to the new thread), so that there's only one open thread at any one time.

I like this notion way better anyway. Consolidating political threads and opening them more frequently seems like a great way to avoid the current morass.
posted by mordax at 11:07 PM on March 10, 2016


I gotta say, as much as I spend like 90% of my time here in politics related discussions and I'm not anti-newsfilter...every time I'm in a long ass thread that is about to turn into a debate thread I think that I should just make a new FPP for it and save everybody the confusion. But...I just don't. These aren't good FPPs, I don't want my post history full of, "Okay tonight Marco and Donald are having a dick measuring contest, literally" type of shit. I like discussing newsfilter stuff with the people here but I just wish there was a more appropriate place for it than the blue. When it gets as dumb as this Republican primary has I don't want it appearing on the main page of Metafilter once or twice a week during election season. I'm not sure what the better way is here, but I hope we can find one that doesn't result in too much of an increase of posts on the blue on election stuff.
posted by Drinky Die at 11:13 PM on March 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Fanfare posts are timeless (hence posts always being open); while debates are really not of interest to anyone once the next debate happens. I'm against this (for this reason as well as others articulated in this thread).
posted by el io at 12:13 AM on March 11, 2016


I don't support this idea, if only because Team Whimsy should get to Win once in a while and how better to grant them that win that doing so on a whim?

Obviously we'd have to preserve the no-spoiler rule, for those who are watching ahead and already know how it ends.
Oh please. Everyone already knows how it ends - a 4 year fucking nightmare.
posted by dg at 12:30 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yeah, George Orwell knows how it ends: with a boot stomping on a human face, forever.

If I followed them to FanFare would that make me a fan of the debates? Because I've been trying to maintain my self-respect by regarding myself more as "horrified on-looker" and I don't know if I can give up the small comfort that provides.

That works for most of us with "The Walking Dead" so why not with the debates?
posted by mmoncur at 1:02 AM on March 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


Exactly, you have a cargo van full of goods and yet Rick doesn't trussTed, the leather clad martial arts guy.

Remember, HG Wells wrote: " Even if the astounding luck of Goring,...holds, so that they remain in control, they may grow wise with success, experience, and ripping years"

-Wells, 'Europe Ten Years from Now',
Liberty, Pg.12, Jan. 21, 1939.
posted by clavdivs at 2:06 AM on March 11, 2016


The main draw in the debate threads as they currently exist seems to be liveblogging it, traffic drops way off in the aftermath. Allowing liveblogging in fanfare breaks the model even more than getting political there, and not allowing liveblogging means that it'll still happen in some other thread. It doesn't seem workable to me.
posted by vibratory manner of working at 2:33 AM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


The only good argument I can see against this is that Fanfare threads don't close. Maybe mods could close them off manually once the next episode is up, a la Meta? But I think that it's actually a great way of fencing off election vitriol into an easily avoidable place - it's not going to spill from thread to thread as a new election thread is declared as Fanfare threads are, by nature, fenced around. Those who are interested could subscribe to the show and those who are not could ignore them and never even have the temptation of clicking on 600+ comment posts on the blue.

I also wonder if this might make it possible to have discussions about politics which are less America centric. I would love to have a place to grumble about the UK's Question Time, for instance (especially now that I'm no longer in the UK and can't do it at work). But this sort of thing doesn't work on the main page as there just isn't that critical mass of hype that the US election gets.
posted by tavegyl at 2:55 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


This seems like a very 2016 issue for which the chosen solution, or lack thereof, will hardly matter after November.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 4:27 AM on March 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


"The only good argument I can see against this is that Fanfare threads don't close."

I'm not quite following this objection.

I feel a bit removed from the whole argument because I have stayed away and will continue to stay away from almost all MetaFilter US election threads, but it's actually surprising to me that a televised event wouldn't automatically be eligible for FanFare. I was surprised that there wasn't a Super Bowl post in FanFare, for example. I don't see why at least major sports events aren't in FanFare. Likewise, things like the debates.

And about the thread not closing -- well, the discussion would need to be about that debate, not the next debate or subsequent events. To me, this would function like, say, an episode of reality television or a news(ish) show (like the Daily Show or whatever).
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 4:36 AM on March 11, 2016


Tell you what, my friends. We're gonna build a wall and keep those filthy debate threads out of this site and bring it back to its former glory. We'll build that wall. A great big beautiful firewall. It's gonna be incredible, my friends. 20 feet high. At least 30 feet thick. And it's gonna be just beautiful. We're gonna put a great big spectacular door on the wall, to let the good people in and keep the bad guys out. We'll build that wall and call it, "Trump Wall," and I tell ya, here's the beauty of the thing. I tell you what, this is the best part, so listen closely... I'm gonna make Reddit pay for it. Now all the losers in the biased unfair media (they know who they are) may say, "But Mr. Trump, how are you going to force Reddit to build your incredible wall?" But they're gonna build it, my friends. Oh, yes they will.
posted by zarq at 4:48 AM on March 11, 2016 [22 favorites]


I can't even imagine how tired I will be by November. Having a shitty disease doesn't help, but it's not going to be possible to avoid the Godzilla vs Mothra show. It will, I think, be impossible to quarantine to the purple.

I'd love to be able to unswitch myself from this horrible train crash, but I guess at the end of the day I lack sufficient character to do so. In my defence, I'm trying to get off a couple of really strong drugs — painkillers you've undoubtedly heard of — and I expect a certain amount of energy is getting directed that way.

And so ends this day's chapter of all about me.

Haloumi.
posted by Wolof at 4:59 AM on March 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


Pony alert: how about a Live subsite specifically for live-blogging televised events, where threads close much more quickly than other subsites, e.g. after several hours or a day?
posted by zebra at 5:27 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


UK's Question Time

Questions include:

- 'Allo 'allo, what's all this then?
- Are you 'aving a larf?
- I say - do you want a bunch of fives?
- Wouldn't it be loverly?
- Do they know it's Christmas time at all?

David Dimbleby chairs the debate in Stamford, Lincolnshire and is joined by special guests HRH The Duchess of Wonderwall, Sir Gordon Bennett, Blue Peter, Nathaniel Barley KCMG, Rupert Giles and Boj.
posted by the quidnunc kid at 5:31 AM on March 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


how about a Live subsite specifically for live-blogging televised events, where threads close much more quickly than other subsites

Or just a "Live Event" category on the purple.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 5:44 AM on March 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


Yeah, what happens in a debate thread -- live commentary on a televised event as it's happening -- seems fundamentally opposed to what's supposed to happen in a Fanfare thread -- commentary on a piece of media after it has been telecast, published or released in its entirety. If there can be no live Fanfare thread about, say, the first episode of the new season of Game of Thrones, why should there be one about the next GOP debate? And where do you draw the line? (Based on what I understand about how Metafilter works, if there were a live GoT thread, I would expect to see it grow out of a posting on the blue about the new season, a la one of the debate threads.)

I know Metafilter site culture discourages them to a degree, but I actually love newsfilter threads and learn tons from them. I personally would like to see more of them declared on the site, even if they're separated from the front-page feed somehow, so that it's not as hard to find them in the midst of a live event like one of the campaign-season happenings. But they feel very Metafilter to me, and not very Fanfare at all.
posted by Mothlight at 5:55 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


I thought you couldn't post FanFare stuff until something had aired (or you better believe I would have been liveblogging PLL BEFORE I TURNED ON IT). Wouldn't allowing this be a major shift in site policy?

Also, would hosting live events on FanFare open up the subsite to sports discussions? I don't care so much but I know there are people who would really like to use FanFare to talk about sports and I'm wondering if a shift to live one-time event threads would include that.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 5:57 AM on March 11, 2016


(Also based on what I understand about how Metafilter works, I've always interpreted the high bar for newsfilter posts and the reluctance to embrace liveblogging-style threads in a big way partly as a control tactic for the moderators, who are strained by contentious and fast-moving threads. Encouraging live-blogging threads, especially politically charged ones, seems like a sure way to increase mod burden.)
posted by Mothlight at 5:59 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


for those who are watching ahead and already know how it ends.

Spoiler alert: everyone loses.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 6:01 AM on March 11, 2016 [13 favorites]


the quidnunc kid: "Questions include"

"How much longer does the Government intend to cover up the number of holes in Blackburn, Lancashire?"
posted by Chrysostom at 6:18 AM on March 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


I am 100% in favor of this request and I think it makes a lot a lot a lot of sense. Quarantine the snappy patter into a thread specifically for watching the show, not one that is ostensibly supposed to be about a "neat thing someone found on the web" but which ends up being a mere fig leaf for people to get Feisty.

I endorse this, but would make a plea to fellow mefites that if so, we follow the rules of FanFare: we are talking about the televised event, not Round 1,356 of Why Some Mefites Prefer Bernie Sanders And Others Prefer Hillary Clinton.

I think some of this is inevitable, but I believe the strongest case for moving the debates to FanFare is that this will happen less often there; if a debate thread is just about the debate itself in realtime, there seems to be less focus on "here are my several paragraphs about why YOU, a JOHN HAGELIN voter, are WILLFULLY UNINFORMED" and more just like five people going "holy shit is that a wig" in realtime.

Which, as noted upthread:
Putting them on FanFare could be a nice way of preventing the election-related threads from ballooning with one-off-type comments, a lot of which are confusing once memories of the debate start to fade.

Yes, absolutely yes.

This is the strongest I've agreed with a pony in a long time and (I could be wrong, I'm not a mod) I also think it would make other threads easier to moderate when the debates are happening; mod can just do a smalltext bracketed copypaste of the link to the Fanfare thread every time someone in a thread about a posted-two-days-prior Guardian article is like "omg WHERE did Rubio get that tie"
posted by Greg Nog at 6:38 AM on March 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


kickingtheground: " threads are closed more quickly (with a link to the new thread), so that there's only one open thread at any one time."

Let's not be doing this. Whatever the nominal reason for the thread originally still exists and conversation about that shouldn't be curtailed just because someone(s) want to re-purpose the thread.
posted by Mitheral at 6:40 AM on March 11, 2016


Spoiler alert: everyone loses.

So, Trump wins then ? Thanks alot.
posted by y2karl at 6:51 AM on March 11, 2016


Yeah, what happens in a debate thread -- live commentary on a televised event as it's happening -- seems fundamentally opposed to what's supposed to happen in a Fanfare thread -- commentary on a piece of media after it has been telecast, published or released in its entirety.
...
I thought you couldn't post FanFare stuff until something had aired (or you better believe I would have been liveblogging PLL BEFORE I TURNED ON IT). Wouldn't allowing this be a major shift in site policy?

Fanfare is currently already a weird mess, where some rules apply to some things, some to others, and there's no common set of expectations across the subsite. We have threads for individual episodes and for shows as a whole; we have some threads for TV adaptations of books where spoilers ARE allowed and some where they ARE NOT; we have books only being able to be discussed if they're posted by certain people, and then only with the expectation that discussion will happen in a time-limited fashion (as opposed to movie threads, where The Force Awakens is still accruing comments as people wander in, having just seen it). One more type of thread doesn't seem to be difficult to add to the morass of conflicting expectations in FanFare.

It's also worth noting that this would be a change in policy only in the letter of the law, not the spirit. The site currently supports live-discussion of televised events (debates, sports, awards shows) - it is happening now. It happens every time there's a live televised event. It just doesn't happen in the subsite that was SPECIFICALLY MADE for discussing televised media. That's downright loopy. Just move the discussions over, let fanfare be a bit of an escape valve for all this steam, and let threads on the blue actually be about the links/articles and stop turning into phone-crashing longboats just because five people wanted to shout "SPEAK UP, DOCTOR CARSON" in a row.
posted by Greg Nog at 6:52 AM on March 11, 2016 [17 favorites]


Also, would hosting live events on FanFare open up the subsite to sports discussions? I don't care so much but I know there are people who would really like to use FanFare to talk about sports and I'm wondering if a shift to live one-time event threads would include that.

There were a couple "The NFL Today" posts last season, but they attracted surprisingly little discussion.
posted by Rock Steady at 6:57 AM on March 11, 2016


(I could be wrong, I'm not a mod)
posted by Greg Nog


Well whose fault is that?
posted by beerperson at 6:59 AM on March 11, 2016


I assume it's possible for the mods to close FanFare posts? If so, then I would say FanFare is a good place for debate threads - they can just close the thread if a heated discussion drags on well after the debate is over. I think ideally you would leave debate threads open - so people could post links to after-the-fact analysis like factchecking, for example - but as long as it is technically possible for mods to shut it down if need be, I pretty much agree with Greg Nog's points.
posted by Rock Steady at 7:01 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yup, that all seems reasonable! I am not against a shift in this policy, and I think those are compelling arguments for it (NB: This was directed at Greg Nog but someone posted in between).

Also not to be a pain but I would also like to encourage us to allow these for sports and stuff if we allow them for debates. Partially, I know there are people who want to talk about, say, the Stanley Cup playoffs or whatever without people coming in to talk about their personal problems with/apathy towards sports in general. I think it would be nice to have this space available and we should also think now about how we'll use it for other live events and not just stuff about US politics.

(On actual preview: it looks like those garnered 26, 14, 4, and 8 comments which doesn't seem too low to me?)

Anyway, I guess my real point is that if we do this (and I agree that it's a good idea), how will this be applied in the future? What posts can have live threads and what can't?
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:01 AM on March 11, 2016


It just doesn't happen in the subsite that was SPECIFICALLY MADE for discussing televised media. That's downright loopy.

I find this argument persuasive.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 7:02 AM on March 11, 2016 [8 favorites]


Current live debate chat should really be in chat. Afterwards, someone can post a debate thread where people can get linky and have a post-morten.
posted by Room 641-A at 7:02 AM on March 11, 2016


A debate thread in FF, that is.
posted by Room 641-A at 7:03 AM on March 11, 2016


(On actual preview: it looks like those garnered 26, 14, 4, and 8 comments which doesn't seem too low to me?)

Well, there is also the fact that there wasn't even enough interest for people to continue to make posts after Week 6. Part of it may be that people didn't realize those posts were being made, so it might be artificially low. In any case, I agree with you that live sports discussion could fit in on FanFare, but how do you group it? By game/week/season? American football lends itself to one post a week, but how would you do baseball? As you say, it's worth thinking about.
posted by Rock Steady at 7:13 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


but how would this affect my paper-thin FPPs which are transparently posted to the blue in order to house the debate livechat? what of my plausible deniability? what of my lust for favorites?
posted by beerperson at 7:17 AM on March 11, 2016 [10 favorites]


there wasn't even enough interest for people to continue to make posts after Week 6

I feel kind of bad about this - I am typically pretty vocal about sports here, and kept forgetting to take advantage of those threads. I hope they resume next season!
posted by everybody had matching towels at 7:20 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


By game/week/season? American football lends itself to one post a week, but how would you do baseball? As you say, it's worth thinking about.

I think the first place to start would be tournaments with one post a week/round/whatever. That gives a chance to see how the mechanics work in a time limited environment. The NCAA tournament is coming up, which would seem to lend itself to a post per-weekend and I think would be a natural time to try out some live events posts for sports to see how well we like them. Just a thought, and not one that's only about giving me a venue to talk about Carolina.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 7:20 AM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


March Madness would be a great test run for that. If it succeeds, I would be so down (and willing to make the posts) for each round of this year's Stanley Cup finals.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 7:24 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Room 641-A: Current live debate chat should really be in chat.

Perhaps, but my impression from speaking with a few folks on social media and at meetups is that Chat doesn't always feel like the most welcoming area of the site.
posted by zarq at 7:26 AM on March 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


The NCAA tournament is coming up, which would seem to lend itself to a post per-weekend and I think would be a natural time to try out some live events posts for sports to see how well we like them. Just a thought, and not one that's only about giving me a venue to talk about Carolina.

Oh God please, please do this. I do not care about basketball and right now he's explaining basketball to the baby who is still in my uterus so I have to sit through games while a Carolinian loon tells my stomach about how we hate Duke and love Roy Williams and maybe something about "buckets" and "the paint" and it would be really really lovely if he had another outlet for this. Please.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:26 AM on March 11, 2016 [21 favorites]


zarq, I'm actually one of those people, but I feel differently about going into chat with a purpose. It might even be a way to get more people comfortable in that area, although that would just be a bonus.
posted by Room 641-A at 7:30 AM on March 11, 2016


a Carolinian loon tells my stomach about how we hate Duke and love Roy Williams

Tobacco Road Derail: My first day ever in North Carolina. My wife has just been hired to a job at NC State, and I am driving around the Triangle scouting out where we might want to live. I'm checking out Chapel Hill, enjoying how much it feels like the New England college towns I am used to, when I am stopped at a red light. Two older men jogging down the sidewalk approach the intersection from the right, both decked out head to toe in Carolina blue athletic gear. "Wow, people here really do take this college sports thing seriously," I think to myself. As they get closer I realize that one of the men is ROY WILLIAMS HIMSELF. I sit there, idling at the intersection as he passes in front of my car, and the imp of the perverse and I have a brief discussion about becoming the most infamous person in North Carolina history despite having spent less than 24 hours in the state.
posted by Rock Steady at 7:39 AM on March 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


becoming the most infamous person in North Carolina history despite having spent less than 24 hours in the state.

Yeah but at least one message board crank would have sent you a fruit basket.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 7:42 AM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Chat doesn't always feel like the most welcoming area of the site.

I don't really like this idea. First, there are people who love to hang out in chat, and I'm not sure they want to be essentially flooded out of that social channel whenever events happen. Second, when I miss a debate, which is usually, I like being able to backtrack through the thread and see what the notable moments were. Finally, the debate threads really don't end at the end of the debate. There is still fairly deep conversation going in at least one of them. It becomes a good place to update election news without new FPPs.

I don't really see a problem with FanFare threads never closing. Just as I noted above, sometimes discussion can continue for a long time after the debate, because a few people are pursuing a particular thread. Eventually it'll wind down like every thread does. I would see a problem with artificially closing just those FanFare threads, because as Greg Nog notes, the inconsistencies start to build up to a thicket.

The classification issue is that yes, it's a televised event, but it's also part of general election news, so it's bluish in that it's NewsFilter.

I do like the liveblogging aspect. But if there's a wide outcry against that, here's one thought: don't allow any debate FPP until the day after the debate. Or at least after the debate is concluded. That way people will be forced to watch it together and at least digest their thoughts a bit before they can start commenting. It also increases the likelihood of better analysis linking since there will be time for the pundits to get to their keyboards.
posted by Miko at 7:44 AM on March 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


it's bluish in that it's NewsFilter.

*strangling sounds intensify*
posted by beerperson at 7:56 AM on March 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


don't allow any debate FPP until the day after the debate. Or at least after the debate is concluded.

But it seems that a lot of the objection to the current state is less "specific Debate FPP" and more "already long politics threads become even longer (and less comprehensible) as debates pop up and take over existing threads."

Also, while I'm hardly a mod, I suspect such a rule would consume an inordinate amount of mod time and energy as they play whack-a-mole with debate FPP's and thus get flooded with "Y U DELETE MY DEBATE THREAD!!" emails.
posted by soundguy99 at 8:13 AM on March 11, 2016


*strangling sounds intensify*

I don't understand this.
posted by Miko at 8:14 AM on March 11, 2016


I read it as a reaction to the seeming equation of MetaFilter to NewsFilter.
posted by MoonOrb at 8:20 AM on March 11, 2016


I like that were having a debate about debate threads.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:28 AM on March 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


Shouldn't "site culture" really be descriptive rather than prescriptive?

/runs away
posted by Celsius1414 at 8:33 AM on March 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


It is called Meta Talk, MCMikeNamara.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:35 AM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Guys, could you please take it to MetaMetaTalk?
posted by Chrysostom at 8:47 AM on March 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


FWIW chat is completely useless for those of us who are time shifted. I don't often get to see the debates live (possibly luckily) since i live in Europe-- but I still like to read mefites' impression of them afterwards.
posted by nat at 8:51 AM on March 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


koeselitz: Also, it'd be good if the people reading the comic books would not divulge any important plot points before they're revealed on-screen.

Thanks, that reminds me: I just found the first three issues of Chaykin's "American Flagg" in bags & boards (very nice condition!) in case anyone is interested in doing a close read for parallels to current events more current than this piece from 2008.

MeMail me!
Wikipedia says:"Chaykin devised a series set in 2031, a high-tech but spiritually empty, consumerist world in which the American government has relocated to Mars, leaving what remains of the U.S. to be governed by the all-encompassing corporation the Plex. The series star is Reuben Flagg, a former TV star drafted into the Plexus Rangers and posted as a deputy in Chicago, Illinois."
posted by wenestvedt at 8:58 AM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Just dropping in to get behind everything Greg has said.
posted by lalex at 9:04 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


I like the idea of a "live events" tab in the purple, as mentioned above
posted by gaspode at 9:35 AM on March 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


the subsite that was SPECIFICALLY MADE for discussing televised media.

This was one of my main considerations when I suggested moving debate threads to FanFare back in November.
posted by ogooglebar at 9:35 AM on March 11, 2016


I don't go on FanFare much because it confuses me, but let the record state that I would be ALL OVER a "Live Event" tag and a live thread for Eurovision.
posted by billiebee at 9:50 AM on March 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


I like the idea of a "live events" tab in the purple, as mentioned above

I agree. I can see not just major debates and sports events, but also media spectacles like the big award shows or the Eurovision finals. It is a natural fit for that part of the subsite (though as always when Fanfare comes up, the current glorious mess is going to just get messier with each addition until finally someone comes up with a better way to organize things there).
posted by Dip Flash at 9:53 AM on March 11, 2016


The different subsites have different rules (and customs) of discourse, and elections are a little rowdy for FanFare. Curious to hear what people think, though.

It could change the tone of the subsite, I think. FanFare is one of those places that I can regularly count on being able to have pretty awesome discussions with people over more neutral entertainment topics whom I might normally disagree with elsewhere on MetaFilter, and sometimes very strongly. I've found it comforting to be reminded that relationships here can be like that if you take politics and push button issues out for awhile. While we technically don't have to participate in threads that we don't want to, somewhat implied in noting that there are different customs is that we will probably feel some sort of impact from more fractious conversations in the near vicinity. This doesn't mean it's wrong to do it there necessarily, but I think we'll see some effects.

On the other hand, some of the posts only get one or two comments for shows, and it would be somewhat humorous to see it followed by one that gets 2497 because it's about a debate people love to hate.
posted by SpacemanStix at 10:02 AM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


The different subsites have different rules (and customs) of discourse

MetaFilter can be so hilarious sometimes. It's a small-enough (tiny!) site as it is, divided into even smaller subsites.
posted by My Dad at 10:05 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


I don't understand the "FanFare threads don't close" objection.

Is the objection that people won't want to discuss the debate beyond maybe a day or so after the event? That's probably true, but if it is I don't see any harm in leaving the debate thread open.

Or is it that people shouldn't discuss a debate indefinitely after it happens, but they will if they leave the thread open? I doubt that would happen, but if it does, I don't see why people shouldn't discuss the debate specifically as long as they care to.

Or is the objection that leaving it open indefinitely will lead to those threads devolving into general political discussion not specifically related to the debate? OK, that's a possibility, but I think any initial inclination people have to do that can be handled by moderation, and once people adjust to the notion that debate threads on FF are for discussion of the debate specifically, you won't see much of that.

Or am I missing some other reason why it would be a bad idea to have debate threads that stay open indefinitely?
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 10:07 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


FanFare is one of those places that I can regularly count on being able to have pretty awesome discussions with people over more neutral entertainment topics whom I might normally disagree with elsewhere on MetaFilter, and sometimes very strongly.

It'll definitely bring a different element to the debate threads (but who knows if that'll translate into threads on The Good Wife or whatever, but I find the tenor on FanFare is already full of snarky hate-watching so I'm not sure adding Donald Trump to the mix is a big departure.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 10:11 AM on March 11, 2016


I don't understand the "FanFare threads don't close" objection.

The three longest threads in Metafilter history have been about US politics -- specifically the 2008 and 2012 elections. Several metatalk posts have been made over the years, complaining that posts above a couple of thousand comments are unwieldy and difficult to navigate. The concern, I think, is that since Fanfare threads don't close, we'd be looking at an ongoing, endless argumentative thread.
posted by zarq at 10:11 AM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


I'm not sure about diverting it to Fanfare, which seemed to be a different kinda thing.

However, there is maybe an ongoing issue with US elections threads. I started to draft a MetaTalk post in my head in the middle of last night*, but fell asleep again. The jist of it is:

1. They attract a lot of comments. See some of the higher ones in the infodumpster.
2. Each election goes on for months and months. At the current rate of commenting, and when people get fed up of loading increasingly long/slow threads and starting new ones, there are going to be several dozen more before the actual election.
3. Though, is this an actual problem for people not interested? So long as tagging is done properly, these things can be avoided.
4. Though they can be high maintenance for the mods, especially with the same argument over and over.
5. The debates and associated events can be difficult to separate at times e.g. a press conference by blah saying he is going to support blah.
6. MetaFilter is/was supposed to be the Best of the Web or cool things online. Donald Trump's [redacted] is not either the best, or cool. Neither as any debate around it; at times it does feel like "scraping the barrel of the web" (and I'm a US political obsessive).
7. But then again, much of what is on MetaFilter is not Best of the Web or cool things online. Remove posts about politics, inequality or ongoing or significant events, and though MetaFilter wouldn't be tumbleweed rolling down a Utah Main Street, it would be a lot quieter.
8. Enormous long threads of comments about a contentious, high profile and current event may bring in some extra non-member traffic to MetaFilter and, through ad revenues, help keep the place afloat somewhat. I have no idea if that is the case, and this may not be a +ve factor anyway.
9. MeFi commenters are going to comment on US elections at a rapid rate (see previous points) whether people not interested in the election like it or not. And, at the least, the discussion is generally better here than in some other political media online.
10. When one US election cycle ends, another begins. This time next year, there may very well be a "The Road to the 2018 Mid Term Elections" thread getting a lot of comments. In other words, IT NEVER ENDS.

Getting to the heart of this, it's seriously difficult to keep "the conversation" in both (a) just one place, as opposed to sprawled across several threads and (b) in threads which don't get too long. I tried to guess this when constructing two recent threads on the US election - this one, and especially this one which I thought may be the home of the election stuff until the March 15th primaries. But I was wrong and that one got unwieldy and the discussion river branched, so you end up having to look at several posts - if you know about them all - to follow the discussion.

I don't have a solution or suggestion to how MetaFilter deals with this, which is a continuous chat / comment on an evolving event that, again, never ends.

* I got as far as typing in a possibly contentious title for the MetaTalk - If Bernie declaws his cat in Israel, should Hillary declaw hers in Palestine? - before falling asleep, and on reflection in the cold light of day that may have been a good thing.
posted by Wordshore at 10:21 AM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


my impression from speaking with a few folks on social media and at meetups is that Chat doesn't always feel like the most welcoming area of the site.

Participating in Chat is a bit like walking up to the smoker's area outside the office. You may or may not know the people there and they may or may not already be talking about something that you would have to catch up on. But they're reasonably friendly and will probably include you if you just come by and start talking.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 10:42 AM on March 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


First, there are people who love to hang out in chat, and I'm not sure they want to be essentially flooded out of that social channel whenever events happen.

I'm a Chat-erer, and I think you'd find most of us wouldn't mind if Chat got flooded during debates or other events. It can make for a pretty confusing place when there's a million commenters all talking at once, and you wouldn't be able to reread everyone's clever witticisms once you log out. Other than that, I don't think it would be a problem; once the event is over we'll all go back to whatever it was we were doing.

DirtyOldTown pretty much has it right. Many of us are logged in while working or doing other things, and so we pop in and out and sometimes it can be pretty somnolent in there. But it's a reasonably friendly place in general, with some mild in-jokes that we're happy to explain or drop if it's confusing.
posted by Existential Dread at 10:47 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Participating in Chat is a bit like walking up to the smoker's area outside the office.

Yeah, but I can't find my lighter password. :7(
posted by wenestvedt at 10:49 AM on March 11, 2016


I don't understand the "FanFare threads don't close" objection

Yes, sure, additional moderation could always help this, and if FanFare has a live event space then presumably there will always be some new live event to move on to, but, for those of us who find the politics/NewsFilter threads among the least satisfying, greatest aggravation-producing, most resource-intensive, and most-likely-to-result-in-hurt-feelings threads on this site, the idea of having (a) more of these threads in (b) a part of the site that is almost completely free from the worst parts of MetaFilter and (c) open for eternity sounds just absolutely terrible.

I would still not like to see live event FanFare threads for reasons set out by SpacemanStix because I tend to think of FanFare as a respite from other areas of the site that are frequently less enjoyable, but if we must have them, it would be my sincere wish that they could close at some point.
posted by MoonOrb at 10:51 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


you wouldn't be able to reread everyone's clever witticisms once you log out

I would miss that. It's half the reason I'd rather read debate recap here than the hundreds of other places online.
posted by Miko at 10:52 AM on March 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


Miko, me too. I love everyone's clever witticisms.
posted by Existential Dread at 10:55 AM on March 11, 2016


FanFare threads never close and there is no current way to rewatch or watch at a later time. I don't really see how this fits with FanFare. Who is ever going to revisit last week's debate in the future?
posted by jillithd at 10:58 AM on March 11, 2016


Maybe FanFare could be cloned into EventFare or somesuch that allows for live event chatter.
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:58 AM on March 11, 2016


I mean, we could just have:

Select A Category...
TV
Movies
Podcasts
Books
Live Media Event
FanFare Talk


And Live Media Event gets closed after 7 days. Everything else goes on as normal.
posted by Greg Nog at 11:09 AM on March 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


Who is ever going to revisit last week's debate in the future?

If no one ever revisits it, and the thread remains open forever yet no one comments in it past the first few days, what exactly is the harm here?
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 11:10 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


FanFare is a nice place. A happy place. A place for me and my star wars friends. Sure the Game of Thrones threads are a filled with appalled on-lookers, but that's fiction.

I feel the "live" and argumentative nature of the debate threads is better on the blue.

For the record I'm voting Sen. Organa
posted by French Fry at 11:13 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


And Live Media Event gets closed after 7 days. Everything else goes on as normal.

If we did something like this would we consider leaving them open if you want to, say, have a live thread for an important season finale or something? It's not technically live in the same way but it might be a big deal to fans of a show and I think it gives a nice feeling of community in some of the FanFare threads if you can talk to people in real time.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 11:13 AM on March 11, 2016


Thank you to whichever of the mods deleted a bunch of comments in the "Six candidates, eight days, eleven states: Election 2016 continues" election thread earlier.
posted by zarq at 11:13 AM on March 11, 2016


lets make /pol/ a subsite of /a/ what could go wrong?

The Blue has had liveblogs since its inception, and fanfare seems a weird kludge to deal with the fact that some people don't like 'em.
posted by klangklangston at 11:18 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


The concern, I think, is that since Fanfare threads don't close, we'd be looking at an ongoing, endless argumentative thread.

NO WE'RE NOT
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:18 AM on March 11, 2016 [8 favorites]


lets make /pol/ a subsite of /a/ what could go wrong?

what is this language you're speaking
posted by beerperson at 11:23 AM on March 11, 2016


the fact that some people don't like 'em

The opposite. I DO like them, and so want a real place for them to live.
posted by ctmf at 11:25 AM on March 11, 2016


have a live thread for an important season finale or something?

No, and I think that's a really good place to draw a clear bright line; the Live Media category would be only for stuff that is actually happening as the audience watches, right then. Sports, awards, the recent little fad of live musicals on NBC, that kind of thing. If we open it up for time-delayed material, then we run the risk of turning all threads into liveblogging rather than serving as a conversational digestif.
posted by Greg Nog at 11:26 AM on March 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


(That being said, I do think we could allow this for occasional live eps of otherwise-time-delayed shows, like when Roc did one, or 30 Rock, and apparently the Simpsons)
posted by Greg Nog at 11:28 AM on March 11, 2016


Okay that seems reasonable. Again, there are plenty of outcomes to this that seem perfectly reasonable to me, I just like knowing what the expectations are ahead of time. My only question for that would be what about something like the Olympics that is a big-deal sporting event that might be presented as if live but time-delayed based on country?
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 11:36 AM on March 11, 2016


regardless of where debate thread ends up (on the blue, on fanfare, roving without purpose or meaning at random across all the subsites, whatever) maybe it would be good practice for people to post links to the "donate to metafilter" page near the end of epic contentious threads. establish sort of a "pass the hat at the end of the political meeting" tradition, as a means to partially mitigate for the extra mod work we cause.
posted by You Can't Tip a Buick at 11:41 AM on March 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


My only question for that would be what about something like the Olympics that is a big-deal sporting event that might be presented as if live but time-delayed based on country?

My take would be run it live with first broadcast (or with whoever makes the post.)
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 11:44 AM on March 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


The new subsite for debates and maybe all politics posts should be FanFlame. Agree or disagree with the subject of the post or the comments, those threads have a tendancy to ramp up the intensity. I like the idea, but I like FanFare and I don't like PoliticsFilter. That's just my opinion though and I'm not sure bringing debates into FF would necessarily change the existing threads there at all. I don't see how fighty or long debate threads would have any effect on the re-watch of Valley Girl.
posted by Clinging to the Wreckage at 11:45 AM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


I don't see how fighty or long debate threads would have any effect on the re-watch of Valley Girl.

I don't either. I also think that keeping people on topic will mitigate some of the long drawn out arguments.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 11:48 AM on March 11, 2016


I don't see how fighty or long debate threads would have any effect on the re-watch of Valley Girl.

Whatever you think about it, come discuss Valley Girl!
posted by MoonOrb at 11:53 AM on March 11, 2016


I'm really coming around on live.metafilter.com. Have a thread for a live event people want to chat about, close any thread X hours after the event ends. I would both enjoy participating and also really appreciate some of that stuff leaving the front page.
posted by selfnoise at 11:59 AM on March 11, 2016 [5 favorites]


I find this suggestion inexpressibly depressing.

I guess we are just abandoning ourselves to the reality that the US democratic process is put on to entertain us and distract us from our political realities.

So fucking grim.
posted by latkes at 12:13 PM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


There are three scheduled events soon here in Europe which are likely to result in threads/posts with hundreds or thousands of comments. These are:

- The Eurovision Song Contest. Two semi-finals and the final, over 10th to 14th May.
- The 2016 UEFA European Championship, from the 10th June to 10th July.
- The United Kingdom European Union membership referendum, on 23rd June, which could see the UK "leave" Europe with all the ramifications that come with that.

So if there is some 'live' mechanism running by then, it isn't going to be just US election (or even US) content within. From past experience, the aforementioned three events get comments from a lot of US, and other non-European, MeFi's.
posted by Wordshore at 12:24 PM on March 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


Yeah, a "live events" designation within FanFare makes the most sense. It could (and should) pretty much all live-broadcast events -- sporting events, election debates, awards ceremonies (e.g. Academy Awards), eurovision, etc.

And it totally makes sense for that one category to have a little "live event" tag, like the "rewatch" and other tags, and for it to correspondingly have a special set of rules, including that it can be posted when the event begins and live-blogging type commenting is allowed.

I'm not sure how much this will end up relieving some of the US election pressure on the blue. I very much agree with the idea that such threads be limited to discussion about the events and that moderators should set those expectations. During and shortly after the event, it will be natural for discussion to include things that are referenced by the event, related to it, but as time goes on I think it would be obvious if people were just using the thread to have a more general discussion, which they oughtn't. So I don't really see the need to close these threads, although there's no reason why that can't also be a quirk of that category of posts, if people really think that's an important limit.

"I would still not like to see live event FanFare threads for reasons set out by SpacemanStix because I tend to think of FanFare as a respite from other areas of the site that are frequently less enjoyable, but if we must have them, it would be my sincere wish that they could close at some point."

I understand the sentiment behind this idea, because I don't like how much US election posts dominate the rest of MetaFilter and, in fact, I've always been one of the old cranks who isn't totally comfortable with newsfilter.

Having said that, the first response that people will offer is the response that's offered by the defenders of newsfilter -- it's not like we're going to run out of bytes. My counter to this has been that the blue is the core of the site and the front page sets the tone and a lot of the expectations -- if it's mostly current events, that makes the whole site feel like a current events site, which I think is a problem.

But that really doesn't apply to FanFare. Or rather, I think that FanFare has an underlying problem that this would only add another drop to the bucket. Unlike the blue, the interest in FanFare posts is much, much more highly fragmented and disjoint and this creates a problem with the reverse chronology main-page posting style. And, yeah, adding political posts to that will make it worse. But it's already a big problem in that much of what appears on the main page isn't of interest to the majority of the people who go to FanFare at all. But guess what? The mods are going to change this. IIRC, they've said so -- the reverse chronology of all posts isn't going to be the main interface for FanFare in the future. So, basically, in the future you mostly wouldn't even have to be aware of such politically-themed FanFare posts unless you specifically go to look for them.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 12:34 PM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Just for me, the density of Hair Guy posts on the blue has become a real problem. And I've been surprised by this, because I haven't had an issue in past election seasons. But if you use MF as someplace to find something interesting to read it is getting a bit painful and although I have no data for this I feel like the endless collection of people dunking on whatever in those threads is sucking the air out of participation elsewhere.
posted by selfnoise at 12:39 PM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


I support the hat-pass idea YCTAB proposes.
posted by corb at 12:40 PM on March 11, 2016


@Wordshore: Eurovision, at least, traditionally has taken over chat for at least one night. So there's precedent there.
posted by isauteikisa at 12:44 PM on March 11, 2016


No. If we are going to do anything like this it would make most sense to have yet another page which is about politics/newsfilter/debates/elections. And then, despite all the grar and so forth, we'd really lose one of the best things about the blue -- the ability to talk to lots of other interested people who are smart and well informed about what is happening in a timely way, with sensitive moderation to keep things from going off the rails.

It is pretty artificial to rely on the fact that there is something televised underway to segregate a thread that is about politics. We might as well move any post about a major speech or press conference.

Some MeFis hate these political threads, but I think the solution for this continues to be not to click on those.
posted by bearwife at 12:44 PM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


I sort of feel like events which are more than a single show on a single network (on a per-country basis) are a different kind of thing and shouldn't be included in this. An election day/night, especially. But maybe also things like the Olympics or the NCAA basketball tournament. With those two examples, I would think that it would make sense for, say, the championship game or specific very high-interest events to get their own posts. I'm uncomfortable with the idea of posts that aren't tethered to a specific broadcast or a specific event and are instead just "Rio 2016 Olympics" or "March Madness". That's way too broad. Although I understand the desire to have threads to discuss these things.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 12:45 PM on March 11, 2016


Wordshore: “However, there is maybe an ongoing issue with US elections threads... Each election goes on for months and months. At the current rate of commenting, and when people get fed up of loading increasingly long/slow threads and starting new ones, there are going to be several dozen more before the actual election... When one US election cycle ends, another begins. This time next year, there may very well be a 'The Road to the 2018 Mid Term Elections' thread getting a lot of comments. In other words, IT NEVER ENDS.”

I agree that this is an ongoing issue. Taking into account the inevitable realities of the United States election cycle, the solution I would like to propose is that we all get together and burn the whole goddamned country down. Just burn it all down, every bit of it, and leave nothing standing. Absolute and utter fucking all-annihilating destruction and desolation. Take off, nuke it from orbit, only way to be etc etc etc.

That is the solution I think we should pursue. And please don't say I'm coming from a bad place emotionally. My therapist says I'm having a pretty good week, relatively speaking.
posted by koeselitz at 12:50 PM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Hey, is anyone going the opening night showing of BvS? can we open up a live thread and talk about that as we're watching?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:57 PM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


Hey, is anyone going the opening night showing of BvS? can we open up a live thread and talk about that as we're watching?

I'm pretty sure that's not being broadcast live.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 1:00 PM on March 11, 2016


I understand the sentiment behind this idea, because I don't like how much US election posts dominate the rest of MetaFilter and, in fact, I've always been one of the old cranks who isn't totally comfortable with newsfilter.

Yeah, if I were the Benevolent Dictator of MetaFilter I'd solve this problem simply by not allowing BreakingNewsFilter in the first place. Sure, we could have live event threads in FanFare, but it wouldn't be for political or news events, it would be for stuff like award shows or sporting events or other things that wouldn't lend themselves to needing much in the way of mod resources. I think part of my reaction here is my disappointment that news/politicsfilter, which I generally consider the worst of this place, just keeps creeping in scope to the point where it seems to dominate MetaFilter.
posted by MoonOrb at 1:12 PM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


Some MeFis hate these political threads, but I think the solution for this continues to be not to click on those.

I love political threads and hadn't been bothered in other election cycles, but this year has been frustrating. The "official" debate threads seem to be chosen arbitrarily so it's hard to find them, and always some overlap as people get the memo to go to the new declared thread.

Also, and this is my biggest peeve, I absolutely love the commentary when I'm watching the debate or primary results live and think we should have a space for this.

But it's pretty annoying when I bookmark a political thread about some substantive issue to read later, and when I get back it's been declared a debate thread and the comments have gone from [substantive commentary about link in post] to
What time is this thing starting?

Rubio's tie sux

Did Donald Trump just reference the size of his penis?

Shut up, Cruz

Kasich got a haircut. I like it!

what a racist asshole

when is the commercial i need to go to the bathroom

we are all doomed
which means the original topic has been forcibly abandoned and this type of conversation holds very little interest if you're not watching along live.
posted by lalex at 1:35 PM on March 11, 2016 [11 favorites]


Taking into account the inevitable realities of the United States election cycle, the solution I would like to propose is that we all get together and burn the whole goddamned country down. Just burn it all down, every bit of it, and leave nothing standing. Absolute and utter fucking all-annihilating destruction and desolation. Take off, nuke it from orbit, only way to be etc etc etc.

But I really, really want to see the end of this season of Better Call Saul.
posted by SpacemanStix at 1:56 PM on March 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


Yeah, MoonOrb has a good point in terms of scope creep. I don't know how often mods are trying to keep election threads pared down to, but it definitely seems like given that every single one becomes a thousand+ page comment thread, it might be nice to have at least a loose cap for how often election posts are going up.
posted by corb at 2:28 PM on March 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


What if we just had a "March 1-15 US Election Thread" and a moderator created a new one on the 16th and closed the old one?

At least then we'd know where to go to find the latest comments and the debate thread could just be whichever thread is current.
posted by mmoncur at 2:47 PM on March 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


Just an observation but this, by lalex:

What time is this thing starting?
Rubio's tie sux
Did Donald Trump just reference the size of his penis?
Shut up, Cruz
Kasich got a haircut. I like it!
what a racist asshole
when is the commercial i need to go to the bathroom
we are all doomed


...would be great lyrics for a new MetaFilter podcast opening tune. One ukulele or guitar, Cortex singing each line, then all the mods coming together for an uplifting last line.
posted by Wordshore at 2:52 PM on March 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


Will it be ok to post a running discussion in the House of Lords? Often a lot more lively and entertaining than our 'merican political events.
posted by sammyo at 2:59 PM on March 11, 2016


What if we just had a "March 1-15 US Election Thread" and a moderator created a new one on the 16th and closed the old one?

Boosting that idea.
posted by Miko at 3:04 PM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


What if we just had a "March 1-15 US Election Thread" and a moderator created a new one on the 16th and closed the old one?

Great idea.
posted by bearwife at 3:25 PM on March 11, 2016


...would be great lyrics for a new MetaFilter podcast opening tune.

OR FOR THE COVER CHALLENGE
posted by Greg Nog at 3:27 PM on March 11, 2016 [4 favorites]


Yeah, I'd like to see the politics threads as a single, time-specific thread that has a link on the sidebar and all discussion is sent there. When it's done (triggered by say a debate being over or a number of days or an election or a number of posts) it gets closed and the new politics thread is the last link, so you can sort of chain our national horror show together bit by bit. Having six or seven megathreads open at a time sucks, especially when you've posted in two or three and nobody's sure where the kerfluffle is.
posted by graymouser at 5:34 PM on March 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


The timed threads could cover the ongoing election drama (including the debates as they happen) but there could still be a specific thread for political topics of interest. Looking through the last few election threads, these would still be their own threads:

- The three-party system
- Samantha Bee on the most important election
- He Loves to Eat Hair (This would JUST be discussion of the bad lip-reading video)
- Single Women Are Our Most Potent Political Force
- How a Demagogic Opportunist can Exploit a Divided Country (This would be article discussion only)

...and "The 2016 Iowa Caucuses", "Live Free or Die", "Nevada and South Carolina", "Super Tuesday", and "Six candidates, eight days, eleven states" would have been rolled into the time-based threads, which would also absorb a lot of the clutter that has ended up in the above specific threads. And moderators could delete PoliticsFilter posts if they weren't specific enough and should be discussed in the current election thread.

If nobody else is eager, I'd gladly volunteer to post new threads at midnight on the 1st and 16th of each month (or whatever schedule was decided) although a moderator should really close the old threads.
posted by mmoncur at 10:22 PM on March 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


^ I second this.
posted by clavdivs at 1:45 AM on March 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


- He Loves to Eat Hair (This would JUST be discussion of the bad lip-reading video)

God yes. I am baffled and don't like the "nominate this existing thread to start a debate" thing, which has happened before on MetaFilter in e.g. football tournament threads. We end up with fractured post threads; a chunk of the comments may not be applicable to the title, or the tags; other MeFi's who may want to comment aren't aware of the debate; and for archiving and looking back purposes it's permanently shoddy. For a website with a strong librarian-nerd contingent and aesthetic, it's pretty crap.

If nobody else is eager, I'd gladly volunteer to post new threads at midnight on the 1st and 16th of each month (or whatever schedule was decided) although a moderator should really close the old threads.

^ I third this. I've done the last two election posts and time for someone else to have a go and hopefully do a better job.

Note that this one goes up to the caucuses today in the post, and after today there's a distinct shift to "winner takes all" delegates. Tuesday will be a major voting day as it's quite possible that it's the last stand of Rubio (Florida) and/or Kasich (Ohio) if they don't win their home states. In a nutshell there's probably going to be a lot of comment about tuesdays votes before, during and after it so you may want to consider doing a post a bit before so it's all in one, correctly titled and tagged, post.
posted by Wordshore at 2:52 AM on March 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


The big Florida/Ohio/etc vote on the 15th will definitely be a good time for a new thread. Since your post lists up to Saturday's caucuses I'll start a new one on Sunday morning with a list of the upcoming votes similar to that post -- unless someone beats me to it.

I assume that one could last us until the end of March? I think most of the discussion will be about Ohio/Florida/etc. on the 15th, it will probably slow down after that. There are 3 more primaries each on the 22nd and 26th.
posted by mmoncur at 4:52 AM on March 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


That's it. I'm gonna go find some archived debates from the 60s 70s or 80s and post them to fanfare as rewatch material. That aught to confuse this conversation more.
posted by Nanukthedog at 6:52 AM on March 12, 2016 [4 favorites]


Not a debate, but I've thought about doing a watch of the Army-McCarthy hearings. I missed the originals, but remember Watergate and Iran-Contra and they were fascinating.
posted by benito.strauss at 8:22 AM on March 12, 2016 [4 favorites]


A bunch of good conversation in here. Have finally caught up with it, want to add a few thoughts about where I am on some of these things, because it feels like we've got an intersection of a few different issues at play. So:

1. Live events on FanFare. I like this idea, with qualifications, and have thought about it a few times before. People have mentioned stuff like Eurovision and big sports tournament events, and those both seem like good targets for such a thing: live broadcast events where it's fun to chatter and liveblog in real time. For which ad hoc threads on the blue can and have worked, but FanFare would be a good purpose-built home. Difficulties that come with this are (a) managing the liveblog nature vs. FanFare's standard mode of after-the-fact discussion, and (b) many of these live events don't really fit the metadata assumptions FanFare otherwise makes for classifying content. But those are both things that I think we can work around if we want to give this a go.

2. Debate threads on FanFare. I don't like this idea very much. I get it, but insofar as live events seem like they're worth pursuing as a FanFare format, the US political debates are about the last fuckin' thing I'm interested in going out of my way on that front for. I think they jar a lot more with the general culture and intent of FanFare than any of the other live events folks have brought up, and (and I say this as a sometimes-participant) I feel like they'd just sort of...stink up the place? I might feel differently if this was something where (a) we'd already figured out how live event stuff works well on FanFare from start to finish and (b) there were only like two or three of them total instead of the giant endless recurring thing we get every four years at this point. I have a lot of debate fatigue at this point as both a US citizen and as a MeFi mod, and that colors my read on this I'm sure.

3. Finding debate threads wherever they are. This has been really ad hoc so far as people have sort of figured out in real time and by a kind of Somebody Just Call It consensus process amidst existing politics threads, and that's understandably a messy way to decide and to have to locate the things in real time. We could totally consider for future debates tossing something on the sidebar at or just before debate time saying TONIGHTS GOP/DEM DEBATE BEING DISCUSSED _HERE_, if that would help reduce that particular frustration.

4. Dedicated debate thread vs. "well, I guess this now the debate thread for the next 2 hours" situations. This is tricky because there's a huge tension between the number and frequency of debates and the general desire by the mods and by a lot of the userbase to keep US electoral politics from overwhelming the front page. And it feels like there's a few different scenarios that could play out:

- A. Kicking off a new thread for each debate would simplify that issue—the debate thread is obvious, and easy to find since it'd be right near the top of the front page when it's happening—but also mean a bunch more threads with their respective footprint on the front page, long tail of post-debate conversation, extra opportunities for political grar and mod attention stretched thinner.

- B. Keeping debate chatter to whatever the most recent open thread about debates is would reduce that footprint issue, at least, but would require some sort of pointer mechanism to solve the problem in point (3) above. Thread would also tend to fill in in between actual debates with general poli chatter.

- C. Sticking to the current ad hoc system where sometimes there's a new relevant debate thread, sometimes a debate gets liveblogged in an older debate-centric thread that folks previously chattered about another debate in, and sometimes the debate ends up getting liveblogged in some other open politics thread because it's less of a teeming multi-thousand-comment monster than any of the debate-centric threads. Downsides: this is a confusing mess (though again a pointer as in (3) could help with discovery at least), this can inflict weird bloaty interludes on ostensibly non-debate-centric political discussions. Upsides: it's, for all that, still basically working to the extent that MetaFilter ever really feels like it's "working" during this every-four-years horror show we keep having to live through for some reason.

- D. SHUT IT DOWN! SHUT IT ALL DOWN! Tempting but probably not on the table. I have my moments. Mind the scotch cabinet doesn't get bare.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:04 AM on March 12, 2016 [9 favorites]


Personally feel that if the election debates at least opened in the same way as Eurovision 2007, then they would be more palatable to watch.
posted by Wordshore at 10:15 AM on March 12, 2016 [3 favorites]


When it comes to sharing what the current election threads are, it seems like a lot of ground is already covered by tags such as election2016. It already seems pretty popular, but mods could make sure it's used consistently. If we then assume that tag to be comprehensive you could just put that link in the sidebar and call it a day. It would also be pretty easy to use additional tags to aggregate specific sub-topics like the debates, as-needed.
posted by feloniousmonk at 7:18 PM on March 12, 2016 [1 favorite]


amoktime.metafilter.com
posted by the uncomplicated soups of my childhood at 10:34 AM on March 13, 2016 [3 favorites]


Perhaps more postive communication will ensure more production of gold and trinium. Leaving once again the Horta to it's natural surroundings deep underground.
posted by clavdivs at 12:16 PM on March 13, 2016 [1 favorite]


So, uh, anyone know where the current debate thread is?
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 5:26 PM on March 13, 2016


And the answer is 4c. Town Hall thread
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 6:04 PM on March 13, 2016


After the town hall comments die down I'm going to start a new thread for the upcoming primaries Tuesday.
posted by mmoncur at 7:35 PM on March 13, 2016


I had no idea the debates were even discussed on Metafilter. To find out they take place at random in other political threads just seems really weird. The reasons for not putting them in Fanfare mostly make no sense to me at all. They're tv events that people want to talk about. Except for the thing about not liking them and not wanting to encourage them, which, fair enough.
posted by bleep at 11:16 PM on March 13, 2016 [5 favorites]


Well, there won't be any debates for a month or so -- probably. So for now here is a new election thread for Tuesday's upcoming primaries and whatever comes after.

Never mind, the mods suggest I post it closer to the event. It will be back Tuesday AM...
posted by mmoncur at 1:59 AM on March 14, 2016


Yeah, that'd be for the best. As is when they open early it's kinds of OFF TO THE RACES and we end up with several hundred comments before the thing the post is notionally about has even started, so keeping it to day-of (even maybe afternoon-of) would help reduce that pre-gaming effect some. Otherwise totally get you on the intentions.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:32 AM on March 14, 2016 [1 favorite]


I'm a little confused, though. I mean if we're going to two election threads a month, they are going to all be extremely long no matter what. I'm not sure I get what we gain by waiting a day. I'm fine with it but just thought it worth noting that they're all going to be heavily commented on, in case maybe we're not really as ready for that as we thought.
posted by Miko at 12:27 PM on March 14, 2016


Was it decided that we're going to two election threads a month?
posted by MoonOrb at 12:28 PM on March 14, 2016


I expect heavy commenting, yeah. I just feel like we're more or less guaranteed heavy commenting as soon as a new one opens up, so if the choice is a few hundred comments about what the actual new thing as of posting is vs. a few hundred comments of slop from the previous discussions' momentum as the start of the thread, the former's a bit better.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:29 PM on March 14, 2016


Right, I guess what's confusing me is that if we just go to a regular schedule, there's always going to be a situation where there's no particularly new thing to be reacting to (like a primary) and it's going to be a more general slow accumulation of whatever is in the news that day. So I didn't quite get why it should be different because a primary is tomorrow - though tomorrow is the 15th and maybe it makes sense just to start on the 15th. It just seemed to me like we were moving away from threads associated with specific "things happening" and more to catchall threads.
posted by Miko at 12:39 PM on March 14, 2016


I'm not committed to the idea of a regular schedule; we're talking to mmoncur in this case explicitly in terms of that particular post and when to better post it.

This remains very much a play-by-feel thing at this point in my mind, so while we may end up having a defacto Post Every Couple Weeks if that's how things play out, it's not something that's pegged on the calendar on the 1st and the 15th or anything like that.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:45 PM on March 14, 2016 [1 favorite]


Ok. It seemed like that's the way it was headed, so sorry I rushed to conclusions.
posted by Miko at 12:50 PM on March 14, 2016


Was it decided that we're going to two election threads a month?

I'm also confused. Is the two threads a month, shut down after 15 days proposal now moving forward? Or is the thread which will be posted tomorrow just another election thread?
posted by zarq at 12:51 PM on March 14, 2016


Oops. Sorry, should have previewed.
posted by zarq at 12:52 PM on March 14, 2016


Thank you, Cortex for clarifying.
posted by zarq at 12:52 PM on March 14, 2016


I'll post when the polls open tomorrow - I agree it's a good idea to start each thread with an event before they devolve into chat, and Tuesday's definitely the main event for this one. New York's primary on April 19th might be the next big "event" unless they decide to do another debate before then, or Trump shoots someone or something.
posted by mmoncur at 3:13 PM on March 14, 2016


New thread for Super Tuesday 2: Electric Boogaloo
posted by mmoncur at 3:58 AM on March 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


If you're wondering whether the incessant saturation of the entire site with election soap opera drives people away, the answer is yes.
posted by Wolfdog at 4:58 AM on March 15, 2016


Serious question, though - do you see that outside of political threads? I really don't see political infighting outside of the threads about relevant topics.
posted by Chrysostom at 4:06 PM on March 15, 2016


Give it a couple of months.
posted by zarq at 4:15 PM on March 15, 2016 [1 favorite]


I for one greatly enjoy the political threads here, mostly because I use them to insulate myself from being exposed to the actual horrors. I don't watch Donald Trump speeches or Republican debates, I just read the comments here...
posted by mmoncur at 9:03 PM on March 15, 2016 [2 favorites]


I hope you appreciate the sacrifices we make on your behalf.
posted by Drinky Die at 9:11 PM on March 15, 2016 [3 favorites]


Maybe it'll quieten down a bit, but with already 1,350+ comments in one day can see the thread becoming difficult to load for many sooner rather than later.

Whether some MeFi's like it or not (and the 'nots' can ignore the sole active thread, or take a few seconds to follow the mod advice and block it from sight) there's a significant contingent of MeFi's who are into the US elections and like to debate, discuss, add links and news here. Always has been, probably always will be. Since the first caucus on February 1st there's been:

- (2563) Iowa.
- (3563) New Hampshire.
- (1823) Nevada and South Carolina.
- (2708) Super Tuesday.
- (2549) Six candidates, eight days, eleven states.
- (1356) Last nights elections, and counting.

That's 14,562 comments so far in 44 days.

Perhaps there isn't that great a problem (or collection of problems) as per this Meta and there just needs to be some minor tweaking, namely (and much of this is happening now anyway):

1. Keep US election stuff in a sole active thread. Zap new posts unless the current one has gotten too long / onerous.
2. Consistent tagging.
3. A sidebar or somewhere else prominent pointer to that current sole thread or the tag, but also contains a link to that mod advice on how to make posts with the tag invisible.
4. Live event debate stuff happens in the same thread, and the weird and inconsistent practice of "I declare this random thread the place where we all jump to now to debate the live event debate within the large event" ends.

This may be a model for other long-running multiple-events-within-an-event sagas. There's an increasing possibility that the UK Brexit thing may be one of those sagas, especially if the UK votes to "leave" the European Union with all the ramifications and negotiations and whatnot.

As for whether any of this is the "Best of the Web", then some/many would say it's not. Though others may say that it's the best US election debate "space" online and some of the MeFi's debating here would put political pundits and experts to shame. Of note especially is dialetheia who puts out more actual information and reasoned and calm argument than pundits on CNN, Politico, the BBC, Guardian and other places I've been reading. Other MeFi's have noted this e.g. [1] [2] [3].

And the BotW argument goes, frankly, for much of what is on the front page on any random day. That's perhaps a different debate e.g.
- Are we kidding ourselves about MetaFilter being the "Best of the Web"?
- Should the mods be harder on zapping non-BotW posts?
- Why are we here?
...for a different MetaTalk, maybe.
posted by Wordshore at 6:52 AM on March 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Of note especially is dialetheia who puts out more actual information and reasoned and calm argument than pundits on CNN, Politico, the BBC, Guardian and other places I've been reading. Other MeFi's have noted this e.g. [1] [2] [3].

Many people have called out dialethia as providing good information and she is clearly providing a service that many people find invaluable. While I think her information is good, I actually think that her highly partisan rhetoric has significantly soured all of the election threads. I wish she would think about the structure of the arguments that she is seeking to make as much as she is thinking about the content.
posted by OmieWise at 7:02 AM on March 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


partisan rhetoric

The fact that she's a Democrat?
posted by Greg Nog at 7:04 AM on March 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


The fact that she's a Democrat?

No.

Partisan: a strong supporter of a party, cause, or person.
synonyms: supporter, follower, adherent, devotee, champion;
posted by OmieWise at 7:09 AM on March 16, 2016


Webster's Dictionary defines person as:
: a human being
: a person who likes or enjoys something specified
law : the body or clothing of a person especially when considered as a place to hide things
posted by Greg Nog at 7:11 AM on March 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


What is your problem? Are you being disingenuous or are you actually confused about my comment? If you're just fucking with me, cut it out.
posted by OmieWise at 7:16 AM on March 16, 2016


I should have maybe mentioned in my comment that, despite her many and sometimes significant faults, I am a firm HRC supporter and hope she gets the Democratic Party candidacy and wins in November. But, although we gun for different candidates, I still think dialetheia has made a significant and high quality contribution to the election debate.

My umbrella is a broad, non-partisan umbrella and those supporting Hillary, Bernie and some of the others are welcome underneath it.
posted by Wordshore at 7:19 AM on March 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


What the hell would an election thread without "partisan rhetoric" even look like?
posted by klarck at 7:31 AM on March 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


I don't mind the partisan-ness, but I just think the Sanders stuff has been on blast from a few users and has crowded out other perspectives.
posted by zutalors! at 7:33 AM on March 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


It's also gotten ad hominem a few times.
posted by Miko at 7:47 AM on March 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


If you're just fucking with me, cut it out.

See? Dave Coulier is the best David.
posted by beerperson at 7:52 AM on March 16, 2016 [3 favorites]


I don't mind the partisan-ness, but I just think the Sanders stuff has been on blast from a few users and has crowded out other perspectives.

Funny, I was thinking the same thing about how the Clinton stuff has been on blast from a few users and has crowded out other perspectives.
posted by Etrigan at 8:13 AM on March 16, 2016


This is a big part of why I'm avoiding these threads. I don't even want to know the identities of mefites who are being nasty to each other because of Clinton vs Sanders. It makes me think less of everyone.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 8:28 AM on March 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


Yeah that's why I generally ignore the election threads entirely. I totally understand why some people feel a sense of utmost urgency about the process and how every small part of the path from here to these seems like it's mission critical. At the same time, it brings out the worst in a lot of people (not just on MetaFilter) and I don't think there's any good way to rein it in from a moderating perspective. I'd love a Debate Thread Extract that basically pulled out all the links (is there a greasemonkey script that does this?) and obviated all the commentary.

There's a big difference between "I support this candidate for these reasons which I think are worthwhile and you should know about them" and "I support this candidate for these reasons and if you don't you are [worse than Hitler or whatever]" People make it personal and nasty and, on preview, what Ivan said.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 8:29 AM on March 16, 2016 [9 favorites]


I feel like any comments about Hillary being a good candidate and not a corporate shill are not really welcome. It had to be fought off pretty hard in the sexism thread.
posted by zutalors! at 8:35 AM on March 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


I find them informative and sometimes find people's arguments persuasive. IT's also nice to be able to ask questions and to exchange information from different perspectives - different parts of the country, for instance, where people are quite familiar with local electoral patterns, important voting sectors, etc., or who are members of a particular group like a union or BLM or something and can talk about the discourse within those sectors. For these reasons I'd like to find a way to participate in the without as much rancor, rather than just avoid them.
posted by Miko at 8:38 AM on March 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


I feel like any comments about Hillary being a good candidate and not a corporate shill are not really welcome. It had to be fought off pretty hard in the sexism thread.

Seconding this HARD. Those comments have not been welcome, at all. Specific people in these threads have been pretty nasty and gone way off the deep end in attacking Hillary supporters. Saying that we're culpable for war crimes and other garbage. The mods have deleted most of those, but not all. When I tried to ask someone not to do that in a thread back in February I got shouted down. So I flagged and tried to rise above.

People feel passionate about these issues, and that's great. But flooding threads with the thinnest anti-Hillary links (random twitter comments, really?) and hyperbolic rhetoric felt pretty clearly like an attempt to shut down discussion.
posted by zarq at 8:42 AM on March 16, 2016 [5 favorites]


I want to also add that I've especially appreciated dialetheia's links in these discussions. They were usually very interesting reads.
posted by zarq at 8:44 AM on March 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


I ignore them too and now I'm removing this thread from recent activity too. If we're going to be dicks to each other I wish it were over something important like wearing hats indoors.

Seriously, I wish people could just not go out of their way to be dicks, though.
posted by MoonOrb at 8:49 AM on March 16, 2016


If 3rd party voters could not be accused of being horrible fifty times in every political thread that would be pretty sweet.
posted by Drinky Die at 8:50 AM on March 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


Drinky Die, I felt like our exchange yesterday about Sanders was great. I said I didn't support him, you asked me to elaborate on a specific comment, i did, you said "cool, thanks for elaborating, I think something different."
posted by zutalors! at 9:10 AM on March 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


I totally understand why some people feel a sense of utmost urgency about the process and how every small part of the path from here to these seems like it's mission critical.

God I'm just imagining if the US-election-post volume were mimicked for, say, Australia (does Australia have elections? Maybe everyone there is just friends and agrees on policies over lunch, note to self: look into this) and the sheer overwhelming amount of Stop talking about this thing so much-type feelings I would have about that is painful to contemplate.

Fellow US People! STOP POSTING SO MANY ELECTION-ADJACENT THINGS
posted by beerperson at 10:12 AM on March 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Since her name came up as we were getting in to this...Dialethia may be partisan for Sanders, but nasty? I've never seen that.
posted by Drinky Die at 10:44 AM on March 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Dialethia may be partisan for Sanders, but nasty? I've never seen that.

No one had said that. You're conflating two different comments.
posted by cjelli at 10:55 AM on March 16, 2016


Yeah I was referring to nastiness in general but no one's commenting in particular. I haven't been involved this time around so I don't know who is commenting how.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 10:59 AM on March 16, 2016


No one had said that. You're conflating two different comments.

Yeah I know, we just transitioned into this from OmieWise bringing her up, wanted to make sure nobody got the implication she is someone who posts like that.

(Also I've thought it was Omniwise forever until just now when I had to type it. This is as mind blowing as when I figured out it was font, not front.)
posted by Drinky Die at 11:10 AM on March 16, 2016


Ah, okay -- I misread you as saying people had said that, sorry.

Also I've thought it was Omniwise forever until just now

And me too, just now, reading that. Wow.
posted by cjelli at 11:18 AM on March 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yeah I know, we just transitioned into this from OmieWise bringing her up, wanted to make sure nobody got the implication she is someone who posts like that.

I didn't bring her up, I responded to one of several other people who have brought her up. My perspective is different, but I definitely did not introduce this part of the conversation, which has also been brought up in a couple of other threads. I also definitely did not say nasty. I was very careful to be as precise as I could.

(Also I've thought it was Omniwise forever until just now when I had to type it. This is as mind blowing as when I figured out it was font, not front.)

I'm glad you saw the difference! I particularly like the song Omiewise (or Ommiewise) and songs like it, and I like it as a username. I do particularly dislike that misreading just because I can feel my own eyes rolling when confronted by a username like Omniwise.
posted by OmieWise at 11:40 AM on March 16, 2016


I didn't bring her up, I responded to one of several other people who have brought her up. My perspective is different, but I definitely did not introduce this part of the conversation, which has also been brought up in a couple of other threads. I also definitely did not say nasty. I was very careful to be as precise as I could.

I think you were the first to bring her up in this thread, though I have seen the callouts for excellence in the other threads you were responding to. It was more Ivan's comment that made me worry she might be getting accidentally lumped in with the nastiness because that's when the conversation shifted from discussing partisan supporters into discussing partisan supporters who are nasty at each other.
posted by Drinky Die at 11:51 AM on March 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


I think you were the first to bring her up in this thread,

Wordshore's comment directly above mine was the one I was responding to. I have no idea if that was the first introduction of dialethia in this thread, but I'm not sure my comment, which quotes his, even makes sense without his introduction:
Of note especially is dialetheia who puts out more actual information and reasoned and calm argument than pundits on CNN, Politico, the BBC, Guardian and other places I've been reading. Other MeFi's have noted this e.g. [1] [2] [3].

Many people have called out dialethia as providing good information and she is clearly providing a service that many people find invaluable. While I think her information is good, I actually think that her highly partisan rhetoric has significantly soured all of the election threads. I wish she would think about the structure of the arguments that she is seeking to make as much as she is thinking about the content.
posted by OmieWise at 10:02 AM on March 16 [4 favorites +] [!]
(Sorry to belabor this, but it's important to me that the timeline and the specificity of my comment here is not misinterpreted.)
posted by OmieWise at 12:03 PM on March 16, 2016 [1 favorite]


Huh, weird. Not sure how I missed that.
posted by Drinky Die at 12:14 PM on March 16, 2016


Huh what yes I brought up dialethia in a positive way back upstream at the tail end of a long comment addressing this Meta. Though if I thought it was going to kick off Round #9,273 of Bernie supporters vs Hillary supporters on MetaFilter I would not have written it. This is probably why I've had stomach pains all evening, as a Mod in MetaFilter Mod Island is sticking pins in a doll of me in frustration.

If I bump into MeFi's who support either Bernie or Hillary (or Martin) at a meetup at some point, I will purchase them equal drinks.

Trump supporters can go buy their own.
posted by Wordshore at 2:24 PM on March 16, 2016 [6 favorites]


What about Republicans fighting Trump from the inside? Do we get drinks? I promise to buy some!
posted by corb at 3:23 PM on March 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


Only if you take him down.
posted by Miko at 4:05 PM on March 16, 2016 [4 favorites]


Trying.

But we'll need the drinks cart.
posted by clavdivs at 4:53 PM on March 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


This is probably why I've had stomach pains all evening, as a Mod in MetaFilter Mod Island is sticking pins in a doll of me in frustration.

I'm sure they have a doll for me too now. I've had the same problem.

And speaking of drinks: Wordshore, If I ever run into you, as a fellow poster of political threads who has probably muttered "My God, what have I done?" to himself a couple of times like I just did after reading comment #1600... The Pepto Bismol's on me.
posted by mmoncur at 8:33 PM on March 16, 2016 [2 favorites]


And speaking of drinks: Wordshore, If I ever run into you, as a fellow poster of political threads who has probably muttered "My God, what have I done?" to himself a couple of times like I just did after reading comment #1600... The Pepto Bismol's on me.

Thanks. As have just seen the near-perfect sign for a MeFite meetup (also, look at the neighbors sign) for people on this thread of different political persuasions, I may spend my drinks money on it instead.
posted by Wordshore at 7:52 AM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


While I think her information is good, I actually think that her highly partisan rhetoric has significantly soured all of the election threads.

Amen. Hogging the mike in terms of frequency and length of comments in response to any and every sentiment to the contrary used to be called thread curating or monitoring, if I recall correctly. Carpet bombing a thread is more shouting down than persuasion. But so far I have only seen markkraft called out for such.
posted by y2karl at 8:02 AM on March 17, 2016 [3 favorites]



Amen. Hogging the mike in terms of frequency and length of comments in response to any and every sentiment to the contrary used to be called thread curating or monitoring, if I recall correctly.


Yeah, i was really confounded by this. Usually that kind of thing wouldn't be allowed. I contacted the mods about it but it's still happening.
posted by zutalors! at 8:36 AM on March 17, 2016


I frankly think this one is on us, not limited mod resources. Maybe we could just try to self correct the nasty? And pro tip, talking about how the other side is nasty but yours isn't, is nasty.

Fortunately for me, nobody is yet going after the "drunken Republican weeping into their beer" demographic.
posted by corb at 9:09 AM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


I frankly think this one is on us, not limited mod resources. Maybe we could just try to self correct the nasty? And pro tip, talking about how the other side is nasty but yours isn't, is nasty.

Um, no?

One party is dead set against allowing equal rights for women, minorities, LGBT's., etc.

We don't need to engage in false equivalence or euphemisms to point that out.
posted by zarq at 10:21 AM on March 17, 2016


One party is dead set against allowing equal rights for women, minorities, LGBT's., etc.

As much as I agree with you on this point, there's a difference between laying out the platforms which is cricket and turning it into some sort of "So therefore if you vote for this party you agree with all those terrible things..." People have a lot of reasons they vote how they do and I think it's possible to point out the weaknesses of the party platforms and the specific candidates' viewpoints without turning into "Therefore if you support them this is what I know about YOU" on interrogating people about their fealty to the various noxious parts of the various party platforms. We see this all too often here and is one of the things that makes political discussions toxic.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 11:09 AM on March 17, 2016 [11 favorites]


I am with you 100% on that, Jessamyn.
posted by zarq at 11:13 AM on March 17, 2016


some sort of "So therefore if you vote for this party you agree with all those terrible things..."

This is absolutely the second at which we go off the rails, and I really felt it in the recent threads. It's one thing to talk about Sanders v. Clinton but another to say "...therefore if you vote [one or the other] you are a morally corrupt individual who hates me and all that I love, and seeks to destroy all that is good in the world," to give an admittedly hyperbolic caricature. But this is a helpful identification of the pivot point where we go from positions to persons.
posted by Miko at 11:31 AM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


I think it's possible to point out the weaknesses of the party platforms and the specific candidates' viewpoints without turning into "Therefore if you support them this is what I know about YOU"

ugh yes

I was a bit startled because earlier on I thought it would be possible to have a discussion as someone who liked Clinton and Sanders but was leaning Clinton and wow whoa, no.

It did tone down more in March though.
posted by zutalors! at 11:36 AM on March 17, 2016


against allowing equal rights for women, minorities, LGBT's., etc.

You do realize I'm talking mostly about the Sanders/Clinton hate, right? There's not thaaaaaaat much difference between their positions.
posted by corb at 11:55 AM on March 17, 2016 [2 favorites]


It's one thing to talk about Sanders v. Clinton but another to say "...therefore if you vote [one or the other] you are a morally corrupt individual who hates me and all that I love, and seeks to destroy all that is good in the world," to give an admittedly hyperbolic caricature.

I've started trying to kindly ask people to tone it down, but my comments have been deleted along with theirs. So, win?

I really, really don't like those comments coming from Sanders people because it brings down the tenor of the Sanders comments on the whole. It's one thing to say "I disagree for X reason," but it's another thing when that's in the context of other people going "you're a horrible person if you think that!" I think it makes a lot of comments look way more hostile than they are.
posted by teponaztli at 12:07 PM on March 17, 2016


There's not thaaaaaaat much difference between their positions.

This is what I think about the Republicans based on the things that I value and care about, which is sort of the point. People think Vermont and New Hampshire are really similar too, unless you live here.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 12:12 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


New Hampshire's the one with the elm syrup, right ?
posted by y2karl at 12:15 PM on March 17, 2016 [4 favorites]



I really, really don't like those comments coming from Sanders people because it brings down the tenor of the Sanders comments on the whole. It's one thing to say "I disagree for X reason," but it's another thing when that's in the context of other people going "you're a horrible person if you think that!" I think it makes a lot of comments look way more hostile than they are.


that's a really good point. I do feel like I started to blend all Sanders comments into one mode because so many people were like "Well, you're a terrible person" etc if you don't agree with them on this one guy at this one time.
posted by zutalors! at 12:17 PM on March 17, 2016


I will try not to do that is my point.
posted by zutalors! at 12:18 PM on March 17, 2016


One of the things that has helped me also is basically not caring if people who disagreed with me that strongly or had such opposing viewpoints to mine considered me a terrible person.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 1:24 PM on March 17, 2016 [6 favorites]


it's just kind of hard to post something purely about Clinton (like when I posted that I liked her specific talking points after winning Florida) and someone copied what I wrote and said, well, that's all Bernie's stuff, end of. That's what I mean by drowning out - it's like, let's get this topic back to Sanders right. now. Even posting positive things about Clinton without mentioning Sanders at all was seen as "gloating."

It's not about being considered a terrible person, it's basically not being able to say very much at all.
posted by zutalors! at 1:30 PM on March 17, 2016


"You do realize I'm talking mostly about the Sanders/Clinton hate"

I usually agree with Zarq, it's hard not too. ( thanks for brightning my day with the heist thread, your a jem)
But I don't read hate. HATE maybe but that's a thing. No. What you dont really see is repvblucans debating the finer policy point of Rubio and Cruz.

You just really don't. And Jessamyn is right and that's part grovel for my comment on the other Jessamyn West, meant no disrespect there because I had the magazine and thought what if I sent it and that's just weird.
But I'll admit to still being a republican and Corb, there is no one to talk too concerning as far as I know. I voted and hope to vote Bern.

I'm voting in all my best interests and that is my fairest assessment.
But your correct, only another republican can shake the machine which makes a radical republican dangerous. Radical in thier head because that what one becomes if you dissent for the most.

I have no link to prove this.
I don't need one.
posted by clavdivs at 4:12 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


It's not about being considered a terrible person, it's basically not being able to say very much at all.

That does not seem to have been an issue.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 6:05 PM on March 17, 2016


There's a continuing problem with how moderation is exercised in threads like these. It's like teachers in a kindergarten class. Instigating comments are left to stand while responses are deleted and scolded. That's the structural form of modding at MeFi. In these threads it ends up meaning that the vocal and demeaning Sanders supporters are given a pass while the people challenging their self-serving narrative are deleted. This is not a conspiracy to support Sanders, but it ends up amounting to the same thing.
posted by OmieWise at 6:19 PM on March 17, 2016 [2 favorites]



It's not about being considered a terrible person, it's basically not being able to say very much at all.

That does not seem to have been an issue.


It actually is, because someone told me to stop snarking and being uncharitable about Bernie Sanders, not a fellow poster.

Thanks for counting my comments though.
posted by zutalors! at 6:26 PM on March 17, 2016


When I said that I believe the Iraq vote disqualifies Hillary to be President one of the responses I received included that I must have been a schoolchild or in a coma at the time. That sounds pretty personal and demeaning to me. When I further clarified my comments I was told that my comment amounted to calling Hillary a "shebeast" which is nothing close to anything I had said. A good number of Clinton supporters favorited both of those demeaning and insulting comments.

It's an ugly discussion from both sides at times. Insisting one side is uniquely at fault is silly and just perpetuating the problem. The mods are doing the best they can, cut them some slack, please.
posted by Drinky Die at 6:32 PM on March 17, 2016 [2 favorites]


I think it's pretty crazy that people are saying to please be charitable to Sanders in that thread and my comment on it got deleted as metaconversation but the person who said I was uncharitable to Sanders got to let their criticism stand.

We're not allowed to criticize other posters, that makes sense, but we're not allowed to criticize the candidate Sanders? We were also told not to be happy when Clinton won five states on Tuesday.

Drinky Die, I think you and I disagree just fine, which I said before. I'm sorry that happened to you.
posted by zutalors! at 6:37 PM on March 17, 2016 [2 favorites]


zutalors!, your first comment to that effect was left up. It was the second and third that got deleted, and it's really a subject that needs to be hashed out here, not there.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 6:39 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


I think the first comment that said 'please stop snarking' should have been deleted. While I understand that was ambigous, when it was clear that that person was essentially saying "please stop saying mean things about Bernie Sanders," I think it's fair that moderation should have played a part.

The only reason I commented further was because I was pretty irritated that it seems to be cool to be like, "Can we cut out the Sanders snark? He spoke with Killer Mike!" and the poster came back to clarify that it was my comment they had a problem with. Again, I wasn't talking about any person in the thread but a leading Presidential candidate for a major party.
posted by zutalors! at 6:43 PM on March 17, 2016 [2 favorites]


If you flag it but then reply to it, I'm stuck making the call as to which is more helpful. I figured a "that's not a cool mode of rhetoric" reminder was fine, but that's all the thread really has room for. If you would have preferred I delete it, skipping the reply to it would have been the right option.
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 6:47 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


that's fair. I'll flag going forward.
posted by zutalors! at 6:48 PM on March 17, 2016


I'm frankly embarrassed by how much I've commented in these threads, and way I've engaged with them. It's not really how I like to present myself.

Sorry to make extra work for you, r_n.
posted by teponaztli at 6:57 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


If you flag it but then reply to it, I'm stuck making the call as to which is more helpful. I figured a "that's not a cool mode of rhetoric" reminder was fine, but that's all the thread really has room for. If you would have preferred I delete it, skipping the reply to it would have been the right option.

I think that's weak sauce.

If moderation is supposed to fix or foreclose the same repeating problems, then I think mods need to do a better job of figuring out what is actually going on. Of course I say this as someone who has been deleted more times by r_n than by all the other mods combined, but if your solution is to go with the easy deletion, you aren't doing your job. There is a dynamic in these threads, and the moderation dynamic has made MF into a defacto pro-Sanders site. That's a problem, in my opinion.
posted by OmieWise at 7:01 PM on March 17, 2016 [2 favorites]


I hate to be for something before I was against it, but I also agree with Omiewise. The site is becoming de facto pro Sanders.
posted by zutalors! at 7:04 PM on March 17, 2016


It's kind of wacky, the degree to which comments disparaging one candidate are read as being propaganda for a different candidate. If I'm talking shit about Politician A, it's not because I'm trying to accrue votes for Politician B; I just think Politician A is shitty and I'd like to talk about it.
posted by Greg Nog at 7:05 PM on March 17, 2016 [3 favorites]


I mean the worst thing I said about Sanders was that his outreach to minority voters seems tacked on to me, a minority voter. MUCH worse things have been said about Clinton, but I've been called out for posting too much, and for being uncharitable to Sanders.
posted by zutalors! at 7:07 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


It's kind of wacky, the degree to which comments disparaging one candidate are read as being propaganda for a different candidate. If I'm talking shit about Politician A, it's not because I'm trying to accrue votes for Politician B; I just think Politician A is shitty and I'd like to talk about it.

Really, is that all? Your earlier comments (in this thread) giving me shit lead me to believe that you're in the bag for Sanders. I have a hard time, given those earlier comments, crediting your "aw shucks" stance now.
posted by OmieWise at 7:09 PM on March 17, 2016


I wrote that I was excited about Hillary in the general because I think she could take on Trump, and someone complained because they thought I was saying Sanders was out - and I didn't even say that, I just said I was excited about the possibility of Hillary in the general.
posted by zutalors! at 7:09 PM on March 17, 2016


I just feel like every single comment ends up with tons of metacommentary around it. Think Sanders is great? Well, Clinton is being held to a higher standard. Think Clinton is great? Well, here's some fighty comments about something unrelated by one of, like, the same three people. It's absurd and it sucks, and for a minute I thought I could actually talk about something besides supporters, but apparently not.
posted by teponaztli at 7:10 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


I wrote that I was excited about Hillary in the general because I think she could take on Trump, and someone complained because they thought I was saying Sanders was out - and I didn't even say that, I just said I was excited about the possibility of Hillary in the general.

That was me! I apologized for that and said I was wrong! What more do you want?
posted by teponaztli at 7:10 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]



That was me! I apologized for that and said I was wrong! What more do you want?


I know, and I accept the apology, I just feel like there's a sense on this site that we should be more sensitive about Sanders supporters feelings and Sanders the candidate and I have no idea why.

Sorry I was really not trying to call you out though clearly I can see why it would seem that I am.
posted by zutalors! at 7:12 PM on March 17, 2016


Wordshore: "As for whether any of this is the "Best of the Web", then some/many would say it's not."

I know I'm fighting the Long Defeat here, but: "best of the web" was officially mod-deprecated no later than 2009, and had already been removed from the posting page a few years prior to that. I think it would be awesome if we stopped using it as the goal, because it usually turns into a cudgel to beat up something the commenter doesn't like.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:13 PM on March 17, 2016 [2 favorites]


Hi, how about we don't have that same freaking fight in here, that we've now had to have in every election thread? How about people stop needling each other about this stuff? This stuff already goes badly enough, how about we don't ramp it up further in here with sarcastic one-liners designed to bait the other person?
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 7:20 PM on March 17, 2016 [2 favorites]


(And just to be clearer: a couple of comments deleted and a night off.)
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 7:21 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


One thing I recommend Clinton supporters keep in mind: Your candidate is going to be President of the United States. Bernie Sanders is not going to be. I don't know if that helps you feel any better, but keeping it in mind helped me be a little less upset at the minority of Clinton supporters who were not being cool about losing back in 2008 when I was a big Obama fan. The inauguration was a nice salve for hurt feelings. For supporters who have invested a lot of time and money into a candidate it can be really hard to come to terms with a loss. You don't really need to fight the Sanders campaign that hard anymore. This is, for practical purposes, already over.

Obviously that doesn't mean you roll over for people being jerkasses, but for the Sanders supporters who aren't acting nasty this is a rough time so try not to get them lumped in where it can be avoided.
posted by Drinky Die at 7:24 PM on March 17, 2016 [2 favorites]


Frankly, it fucking sucks to be a Sanders supporter, and I fucking hate that I'm as close to the campaign as I am. You have no idea unless you're on the receiving end of it just how much there is out there about how we're all like the Tea Party, or Donald Trump. There's so much condescending bullshit directed at naive millennials, so much about Bernie Bros, and all this shit says nothing about my personal support, but I still have to answer for it no matter what I say. And it's pretty hard not to take it personally when you get it over and over again.

I've never been this close to an election before, and I can tell you it's the worst. So many articles about how unserious he is (referring to the work that my people have done), about how he's just raising an army of idiots (referring to the work my people have done). I'm used to hearing political shit talk about the people I love, but never on this huge scale, and never from so many people all at once. And I'm just off center from being in the middle of it, so imagine the nonstop thrills.

That's my problem and I get that other people aren't supposed to accommodate this, but Jesus, I wish people would understand that it's not like a homogenous bunch of asshole Bernie Bros here. And yet no matter what I say, I have to answer for all the shit that's been said by people I have pretty much nothing in common with. It's guilt by association, and it's making me sick.

I'm sorry for ranting, but I've been wanting to write this for a while. I just need to get it out there that I'm having a really, really hard time with this, and I'm trying to do my very best to be totally fair because I genuinely care about that. But I feel like I can't jump high enough, and I snap and say shitty stuff and it all just contributes to the overall atmosphere. The worst part is that I'm half expecting someone to respond to this and say "well, now you know how it feels." I'm sure they're right, and I'm sure I shouldn't complain about anything, but fuck I wish you people understood what I've been going through with all this. It's not your fault or your responsibility that I'm happy or whatever, but fuck, I need to at least say something about this so that I'm not just writing comment after comment feeling shitty about it.
posted by teponaztli at 7:26 PM on March 17, 2016 [9 favorites]


I just think being able to criticize the candidate should be fair game. It's weird to get called out for that. One poster who posts way more than I ever could in support of Sanders is always posting minority vote statistics to prove that Sanders is winning over minorities, and I mention, as a minority voter, why I think his message might not be resonating, and I'm told to stop snarking and that I don't understand feminism.

FTR I forgive everyone, I know lots of people apologized for lots of things, I'm just explaining why I feel like things are lopsided.
posted by zutalors! at 7:30 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


Sorry teponaztli, I was responding to Drinky Die.
posted by zutalors! at 7:31 PM on March 17, 2016


Yeah I don't disagree. The differing personal perspectives we have on the candidates and the race are why people bother to show up in these threads. Otherwise you can just follow a news site.

We disagree on the lopsidedness of that though, but I have seen what you are talking about directed at you.
posted by Drinky Die at 7:35 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


zutalors, no worries, and anyway I was the one who blew up just now.
posted by teponaztli at 7:42 PM on March 17, 2016


I've been called out for posting too much...

This is something that has happened to many of us over the years, and I think it has a lot to do with perception, not just posting frequency. If you're engaged in a heated back and forth, some people will feel you're sucking the air out of the room. And sometimes, not all the time, they'll be right. So in contentious threads, i tend to think it's good idea to keep an eye on one's posting frequency, as well as whether one is engaging in "taking on all comers" behavior, because it's (a) often disruptive and (b) will make people feel silenced. Long term, folks tend to remember that.

If you're posting comments very frequently in a single thread, that's something to look at. In say, a 2000 comment thread, 50-100-150 comments or more seems high enough to pay attention to.
posted by zarq at 7:45 PM on March 17, 2016 [2 favorites]


sure, but the only reason I felt cool posting more is that dialethia responds to almost every comment with multiparagraph stuff and people think she is the greatest thing on this site. I find it tedious.
posted by zutalors! at 7:47 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


One of the things that has helped me also is basically not caring if people who disagreed with me that strongly or had such opposing viewpoints to mine considered me a terrible person.

I see this, I hear this. At the same time, I think it's something worth examining because it contributes to kind of an overall negative for MetaFilter. Once I really do stop caring whether people think I'm a terrible person, I'm basically backing away from signalling that I want to be part of a mutually respectful site community. It's true, I can say "well, that's your opinion, man, and screw all y'all," and I have done that thing. But what it means is that I have had to essentially give up on thinking that I could both represent myself and my own reasoned point of view and enjoy a sense of inclusion. The net effect is that you can have one or the other, but not both - and when you realize maybe you don't care if people with opposing viewpoints think you're a terrible person, and you have opposing viewpoints fairly often, then you're starting to find yourself painted on the outside of the circle of what MeFi is. A certain amount of that is tenable, especially if it's a handful of combative opponents usual-suspect style, but after a while, it starts to seem like hey, maybe I don't belong here any more. Fine line.

I fucking hate that I'm as close to the campaign as I am

I don't know if maybe you're a member of the Sanders family, or something; maybe you are. But I just want to say that a lot of us here have been closely involved in a lot of political campaigns for a long time, and we know to some degree what that is like - how much you hope, how hard you work, and how deeply you're invested. I appreciate that your feelings about this are strong, but just want to note that that experience is one that is widely shared, and is familiar to many people in political activity for many years. It is part of being politically active. I'm not saying that to try to minimize your contributions, but just want to sort of expand the frame - what you're experiencing isn't something that is unfamiliar to many, maybe most, of the people you're engaging with, and many of them have been chipping away at the progressive agenda for decades now. That's where a lot of the philosophical/strategic/"long game" stuff comes from - not anti-progressivism or fear of change, but knowing from hard experience that we rarely take it all home in an enormous Hail Mary upset, and that all that great energy, belief, rightness, conviction and idealism end up having to be channeled into longer-term activity, because that is just the nature of the beast. I spend so much time now trying to communicate that it's important not to let short-term losses be a deterrent to deep engagement with political change, and to take that energy into every small local race, every community project, and every slow and boring and incremental effort to shift the ground. It took the right forty years to swing the pendulum, and it wouldn't be surprising if it took progressives another thirty to swing it back. That doesn't make the cause lost or the fight not worthwhile.
posted by Miko at 7:49 PM on March 17, 2016 [3 favorites]


Zutalors! I understand. I sometimes find it more helpful (and better for my annoyance level) to disengage rather than escalate. Or to make key points rather than respond to a flood with a flood.

But that's definitely not easy.
posted by zarq at 7:56 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


And just to be clear zutalors!, I'm not presuming to suggest a course of action for you. Just talking about what I've found helpful in the past.
posted by zarq at 8:06 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


If you're posting comments very frequently in a single thread, that's something to look at. In say, a 2000 comment thread, 50-100-150 comments or more seems high enough to pay attention to.

My personal rule (that I break with some frequency, I know) is to try and limit myself to three comments. If I haven't made my point by then, it isn't going to happen. I'm not saying that people who post a gazillion comments are wrong to do so, but there are definitely diminishing returns at some point. There is also a very different dynamic between the (to me boring, but for some exciting) back and forths, and the kinds of exchanges that progress and develop interesting and mutually respectful ideas -- both might involve a lot of comments by one person, but they are not the same situation.

I see this, I hear this. At the same time, I think it's something worth examining because it contributes to kind of an overall negative for MetaFilter. Once I really do stop caring whether people think I'm a terrible person, I'm basically backing away from signalling that I want to be part of a mutually respectful site community. It's true, I can say "well, that's your opinion, man, and screw all y'all," and I have done that thing. But what it means is that I have had to essentially give up on thinking that I could both represent myself and my own reasoned point of view and enjoy a sense of inclusion.

I really like this comment. I made the choice to sometimes just say "I own and enjoy guns" when the usual gun violence/gun rights posts happen, which once in a while means having someone say something unkind, and also, in at least that one moment, removes any sense of inclusion. I'm fine doing that with one or two subjects, but it would be tiring (and tiresome) to do that across the board. That is a very different dynamic, and I think part of "reading the room" is having at least some sense of when to dig in and when not to, and too much of the one is not good for the site any more than it is good for a person.
posted by Dip Flash at 8:19 PM on March 17, 2016


Yeah, thanks zarq I didn't think you meant me. To be clear, I was just frustrated that ChurchHatesTucker was sniping at me for commenting a lot because that person is clearly pretty anti Clinton so it seemed like he just douesn't like my "side."

What I really would have liked, when these primaries started, was to just be able to talk about both candidates but the fact that I said positive things about Clinton also got me pretty well boxed into the Clinton/Bank/WarLovers category which isn't cool. I can't unring that bell, but. When I say I feel like I can't say things, I mean that I feel like I can't say positive things about Clinton, like how elated I am that as a woman she even got this far. The temperature against her on here is just way, way too hot.
posted by zutalors! at 8:27 PM on March 17, 2016


try and limit myself to three comments. If I haven't made my point by then, it isn't going to happen.

Recently, there was some research based on reddit threads that concluded that if you haven't convinced an opponent in four or five exchanges, it's not going to happen.

I've certainly been dragged/walked into many long long multi-comment exchanges. One of the aspects of the issue is that if you have more than one opposed interlocutor, each of them may keep coming with different specific points they want you to consider, and it seems like to maintain the cohesion of your total argument you have to deal with each premise - otherwise, the last interlocutor in line may conclude "got you there!" If we're really trying to make collective progress toward mutual understanding, there is going to be a lot of back and forth. But I can really see how walls of text reiterating essentially the same things have grown exhausting in the election threads.
posted by Miko at 8:27 PM on March 17, 2016


hey, maybe I don't belong here any more.

Exactly. I don't belong in those political threads. There's not much for me to get out of them and I don't have much to share, so I mostly avoid them. But, if you're in a place you'd otherwise like to be, learning to not mind what a specific person thinks about you if they have something negative to say can actually help you stay in a place you otherwise might not feel a part of. Some people on MeFi care very much what each individual thinks and sometimes it can be useful to take a few steps back from that so that you can continue a discussion you want to be having even if one (or a few) people have said weirdly negative things about you that you think are uncalled for an unkind.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 8:34 PM on March 17, 2016


I don't belong in those political threads.

For me, it's not just the political threads, it's the whole place - in part because it is tied up with moderation culture, as well, as OmieWise noted. I do follow politics and am interested in participating in those threads, and don't want to be shouldered out of them because I don't fall into whatever the majority view is.

I don't think it's quite appropriate to frame this as an issue of personal oversensitivity or managing individual exposure as much as it is of site atmosphere and goals for community involvement and wide participation. "Opt out," though it seems like a voluntary sanity-promoting choice, at some point becomes just a way of limiting the views that get aired and constraining expression across the entire site.
posted by Miko at 8:47 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


otherwise, the last interlocutor in line may conclude "got you there!"

Deciding that I am ok with people being wrong on the internet (including mischaracterizing things I might have said) was incredibly freeing. If that means someone might decide they "won," then more power to them.

I've been skimming at best and sometimes skipping most of the election discussions, especially the ones that get into the endless back and forths, with exactly the feeling of not belonging that you describe.
posted by Dip Flash at 8:48 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


Yeah, I've skipped more than I would ever have in the past. I guess I just feel like if a lot of us are doing that, as it seems, well, isn't that a net loss? Doesn't that basically reduce the whole thing to the dregs situation it's sort of becoming?
posted by Miko at 8:52 PM on March 17, 2016 [1 favorite]


I don't know if maybe you're a member of the Sanders family, or something; maybe you are.

Hey, I appreciate your comment, but I did want to just say that no, I'm not a member of the Sanders family, and beyond that I hope I haven't threatened my anonymity or that of anyone I know.
posted by teponaztli at 9:33 PM on March 17, 2016


I do follow politics and am interested in participating in those threads, and don't want to be shouldered out of them because I don't fall into whatever the majority view is.

But this is how it has always been, for a lot of us - not because mods have nefarious secret plans or whatever, but because it's always been a lot harder for them to manage dozens of hecklers than whatever the first person said that got them heckled in the first place. Metafilter has never really figured out well how to have people able to post opinions that others find enraging. It has always erred, based on resources, on the side of the deleting the provoking comment.

If we as a community want to stop allowing heckler's veto or toxicity veto to rule, we need to as a community be okay with much more aggressive "no, seriously, stop being assholes. Anyone who continues being an asshole after being asked not to will be asked to leave the thread, regardless of how much of a valuable commentator they are." Currently, I don't think we are. There's a lot of argument here over whether it's Sanders supporters being jerks or Clinton supporters being jerks. Who cares? Let's just try to self police not being jerks and the rest will sort itself out. If you notice some shit you said is assholish, self flag. Get it gone. remember you love each other.
posted by corb at 10:09 PM on March 17, 2016 [4 favorites]


To be clear, I was just frustrated that ChurchHatesTucker was sniping at me for commenting a lot because that person is clearly pretty anti Clinton so it seemed like he just douesn't like my "side."

I wasn't criticizing you for commenting a lot (I'd be the world's biggest hypocrite if I did) but for claiming you weren't able to speak out when you clearly were.

My opinion of Clinton and/or her supporters doesn't even enter into it.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 6:34 AM on March 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


it's always been a lot harder for them to manage dozens of hecklers than whatever the first person said that got them heckled in the first place. ... Metafilter has never really figured out well how to have people able to post opinions that others find enraging. It has always erred, based on resources, on the side of the deleting the provoking comment.

It seems to me that what we're discussing here is exactly the opposite - letting provoking comments stand while deleting (or just visibly deploring) responses.
posted by Miko at 6:50 AM on March 18, 2016 [1 favorite]



I wasn't criticizing you for commenting a lot (I'd be the world's biggest hypocrite if I did) but for claiming you weren't able to speak out when you clearly were.


I felt like it was impossible to talk about both candidates or say anything positive about Clinton or anything negative or even questioning about Sanders without getting every point countered or people taking offense.

I understand people feel the same from Clinton supporters. I just think those things can be more reasonable, and people saying Sanders isn't the best candidate are not trying to burn down the progressive movement.
posted by zutalors! at 8:20 AM on March 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


It seems to me that what we're discussing here is exactly the opposite - letting provoking comments stand while deleting (or just visibly deploring) responses.

But you see, I would also feel that way - because the things that pissed me off were not loud enough and obvious enough for mods to see them as provoking. They're like dog whistle provocation- loud enough for committed people to see, not loud enough for others. And mods cannot be expected to be deep in the weeds enough to have a sense of, say, what Sanders supporters or Clinton supporters think is an unfair attack.

And this Sanders/Clinton hate is new, new, new! It's hard to be looking out for it, because not eight months ago, a lefty vs lefty political conversation would be pretty civil. It's only as the election cranks up that it gets to fever pitch.

People are getting mad at Sanders supporters for posting a lot about Clinton's establishment activity. People are getting mad at Clinton supporters for talking about Berniebros. These are not things that would have brought the knives out previously, and you cannot expect mods to be attuned to them.
posted by corb at 9:54 AM on March 18, 2016


I felt like it was impossible to talk about both candidates or say anything positive about Clinton or anything negative or even questioning about Sanders without getting every point countered or people taking offense.

I don't understand the objection to having points countered.

The only thing that I took offense to was people insisting she had wrapped it up (not yet) and Bernie supporters should fall in line (not until I've voted, at least.)
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 10:23 AM on March 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


And this Sanders/Clinton hate is new, new, new!

I don't know, it's not all that different from the Obama/Clinton angst. Just a little more generationally divisive.
posted by Miko at 11:53 AM on March 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


And this Sanders/Clinton hate is new, new, new!

Just sounds like "You ruined America if you voted for Nader" to me.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 11:57 AM on March 18, 2016 [9 favorites]


The only thing that I took offense to was people insisting she had wrapped it up (not yet) and Bernie supporters should fall in line (not until I've voted, at least.)

I didn't say anything like that.
posted by zutalors! at 12:58 PM on March 18, 2016


I didn't say you did.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 1:15 PM on March 18, 2016


ok. I don't mean to be fighting! I'm not fighting. All cool.
posted by zutalors! at 1:16 PM on March 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


235 days to go...
posted by Miko at 1:32 PM on March 18, 2016


235 days to go...

From The New Yorker (Facebook) a few days ago.
posted by Wordshore at 2:50 PM on March 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


I look forward to the election being over so we can all just hold silent grudges that never get resolved.
posted by teponaztli at 6:25 PM on March 18, 2016


eh people forget.
posted by zutalors! at 6:27 PM on March 18, 2016


Not if you voted for Nader, they don't. It's not beyond the realm of possibility that a Trump victory would lead to a lot of resentment towards Sanders supporters, given that people are already assuming folks will refuse to vote for Clinton on principle.
posted by teponaztli at 6:32 PM on March 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


Ugh. Don't pile on before it happens, because that's how you ensure it happens.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 6:45 PM on March 18, 2016 [2 favorites]


Yeah I still blame the Bush voters for Bush.
posted by zutalors! at 6:50 PM on March 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


It isn't just an assumption. Plenty of vocal Sanders supporters, even here on MF, are saying they would never vote for Clinton.
posted by OmieWise at 7:37 PM on March 18, 2016 [1 favorite]


I haven't really seen that many. But, there are 3rd party or don't vote people every election, they don't have an impact of any kind most of the time. That's where assumptions about how it could go down come in. I think the numbers suggest it's far more likely the Republicans will be the ones experiencing serious problems along those lines this time around.
posted by Drinky Die at 8:04 PM on March 18, 2016


I've seen at least two people on MF, I won't mention their names for fear of being banned again for actually paying attention, but theyve both said it enough, in between potshots at Hillary and her supporters, that I take it to be true. Two people is actually a pretty high percentage of the similarly vocal Sanders supporters.

Statements from BS supporters in general saying they won't vote for Hillary are rampant on the internet.
posted by OmieWise at 8:15 PM on March 18, 2016


Yeah, two or three counting me is about how many I've seen. About the same amount as I saw in 2012.
posted by Drinky Die at 8:22 PM on March 18, 2016


(And I mean, if internet comment sections reflected the electorate Sanders would be leading this primary on the way to taking back the White House from President Paul)
posted by Drinky Die at 8:26 PM on March 18, 2016 [2 favorites]


Speaking of problems with how these threads are conducted: now comments pointing out the structural sexism in some of the praise BS supporters engage in are getting deleted. No calling out of other precious MFers. No snarky anything. Just straight up comments pointing out that praising BS for attitudes that women are not allowed to assume in public might be something of a problem for self-identified progressives. I'm glad for the emotional labor of the women of MF I admire. Without it we wouldn't have female mods to delete critiques of obvious sexism.
posted by OmieWise at 8:32 PM on March 18, 2016


OmieWise, we've now been through several rounds of deletions, email conversations, tempbans, with you over a -- I think -- very simple idea: stop going after Sanders supporters. When these threads turn into "Clinton supporters suck" vs "Sanders supporters suck", it is terrible, it makes already-very-difficult threads worse. We've been asking everybody, over a longish time now, to refrain from going there. We haven't always been able to be consistent with enforcement, but I think the idea (please don't take the thread in the direction of discussing whose supporters suck and why and how much) should be pretty straightforward.

If you want to say "it's sexist to critique Clinton in such-and-such way while praising Sanders for such-and-such" that is fine. If you want to say "these Sanders supporters sure suck because they ___", that's doing the thing I have asked you (repeatedly, elaborately) not to do.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 8:37 PM on March 18, 2016 [7 favorites]


So OmieWise's account is disabled. I don't disagree with the mods' position, and have in fact disagreed with OmieWise in some of the recent political thread, but I do hope that he finds a way to get back into the discussions here at MetaFilter eventually. In the anti-Semitism Meta from about a year ago I was so struck by his ability to respond clearly and calmly to all kinds of comments that I sent him a memail thanking him for him contributions — and I don't do that frequently.
posted by benito.strauss at 10:03 PM on March 18, 2016 [5 favorites]


Was he banned, given a time out or did he button?
posted by zarq at 7:21 AM on March 19, 2016


He buttoned.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 7:26 AM on March 19, 2016


Ok. Thanks. Just curious.
posted by zarq at 8:05 AM on March 19, 2016


But it seemed like he was given a timeout yesterday?
posted by Miko at 8:10 AM on March 19, 2016


He had just come off a 24 hour ban and immediately resumed doing the thing. I get why people are curious, but it feels weird to me to get into a more detailed public postmortem about this.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 8:22 AM on March 19, 2016


It's a little tricky to understand what went down since the comments were deleted and there's no way to see what it was he was doing that was bad. Of course that's kind of always the case with these things, but OmieWise is usually pretty judicious and respectful, even when he's got a strong opinion, so it's just surprising. And I do think he was goaded and baited even long after he raised concern about that behavior.
posted by Miko at 11:09 AM on March 19, 2016


What went down is what I said in my reply to OmieWise's comment just above.

This is pretty much a no-win situation, where I can either let this "probably you mods are being dishonest" thing stand unanswered, or I can lay out negative things about a member's participation after they've chosen to step away and can't reply. Neither of those is a good option.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 11:20 AM on March 19, 2016 [1 favorite]


But we can totally discuss, separately from OmieWise's specific situation, these threads and how things are handled and what counts as a deletable comment, if people want to have that conversation.
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 11:27 AM on March 19, 2016 [1 favorite]


Just for the historical record, I should hope there is, on etched titanium plates in an apocalypse proofed rebarred concrete bunker, a hard copy complete MetaFilter etched containing every keystroke posted. Then the hologrammatically faced androids from the A.I. far future can revive the entire membership for a whole day so all these things can be settled before we are all tucked in bed to sleep far past the last ding dong of history. But until then we are stuck with human beings who see things the bulk of the other human beings do and do not see.

Omiewise is one of the good guys to me. I hope he is back soon.
posted by y2karl at 11:36 AM on March 19, 2016 [3 favorites]


More flagging, as always,. is probably the most appropriate takeaway. Instead of letting it escalate and draw more people into conflict, I'll try better to flag attacks when they come up, even subtly.
posted by Miko at 12:30 PM on March 19, 2016


I saw some of the deleted comments (from more than one user) in that thread, and the sense I get is that it's as much about the content of a single comment as it is about that comment being part of a pattern of behavior. If literally anything you say in favor of something is met with a comment on your person - not an idea, but what's wrong with you - then it's extremely frustrating to participate. And I mean - if you write a comment, and a minute later there's a comment about how you can only believe that if you are _______, every single time, then yeah, I appreciate some of those getting deleted.

Some of my comments were deleted for responding to those comments that would later be deleted. On the one hand it's frustrating because that was an opportunity to address the pattern of behavior that you found hurtful or insulting. On the other hand I get that I was contributing to a negative atmosphere by having this constant back-and-forth. I didn't flag because like I said, as individual comments they were frustrating, but not egregious - but it was the overall pattern that was really exhausting.
posted by teponaztli at 3:52 PM on March 19, 2016 [5 favorites]


try and limit myself to three comments. If I haven't made my point by then, it isn't going to happen...I think part of "reading the room" is having at least some sense of when to dig in and when not to, and too much of the one is not good for the site any more than it is good for a person.

Sort of a side trail, but this is connected to a tension that I think drives some divisiveness in online communities. Namely, whether it's okay to walk away from a discussion without having to internalize, or giving the impression, that you are conceding the argument. I think the world is somewhat divided on what "not engaging anymore" means. Some people interpret it as admitting defeat (and that's why someone always is tempted to feed the troll instead of letting them shout into a non-receptive room). But sometimes it's true that you just don't perceive value in continuing, even if you haven't "won" the argument. Once I realized that I could interpret silence this way by myself or about others, it became a very freeing thing. My general rule of thumb is that if I'm feeling anxious enough that I have to respond to feel better about that anxiety, I probably serve myself a lot better by just having my say, and being content to let it fall on deaf or disagreeing ears, or let it possibly be of help to someone who may be lurking in the room. Nobody really benefits from extended back-and-forth that gets overly divisive, and the times that I've been a part of something like that, I was way more regretful that I participated than I was hopeful that I'd win super-important argument. A good discipline, I've found (in theory, anyway), is to learn to at times (not always, but maybe more often than not) to be comfortable with silence regarding one's reputation or social well-being without feeling the need to always defend, defend, defend.
posted by SpacemanStix at 9:02 PM on March 19, 2016 [3 favorites]


Some people interpret it as admitting defeat (and that's why someone always is tempted to feed the troll instead of letting them shout into a non-receptive room). But sometimes it's true that you just don't perceive value in continuing

I think there are more than two possible options. When I reflect on why I devote time to interaction with strangers over topics on the internet, the main motivation is to learn. You can learn by reading others' contributions but you can also learn by having points raised and dealt with, whether by me or by others. When everyone walks away taking their viewpoints and arguments and experience with them, even if that is a sanity-producing choice for them individually, the overall value of the interchange collapses. Now, of course it is often true that someone is dug in and will neither produce new arguments nor change their opinion. But I think there is a distinction between that situation and an ongoing, searching discussion about points which are truly unresolved or perennially debatable, when there is new information or perspective being considered. So I dislike the notion that continuing to engage an opposed person, in and of itself, is purely defensive or a shallow exercise. It's not so much the number of exchanges that matters as their substance.

Granted, there can be a group of people who are participating from different orientations to this idea - one person's useless contradiction can be another's productive argument, or at least their attempt at it - but I hesitate to be quite so reductive, or put non-participation/walking away on too high a pedestal just because it is one possible choice that participants can make, even though sometimes it is a good, considered choice.
posted by Miko at 8:38 AM on March 20, 2016 [3 favorites]


But I think there is a distinction between that situation and an ongoing, searching discussion about points which are truly unresolved or perennially debatable, when there is new information or perspective being considered. So I dislike the notion that continuing to engage an opposed person, in and of itself, is purely defensive or a shallow exercise. It's not so much the number of exchanges that matters as their substance.

I would actually agree with this very much. Sorry if it sounds like I was setting up a false binary situation there. I wasn't trying to say that engagement is shallow, only that at times, deciding not to further engage doesn't indicate shallowness, either. It's certainly a worthwhile thing to keep at some discussions for good reasons, even if it's painful, or even if it's hard to tell if it will be overtly productive. I actually think some of our better conclusions on metafilter have been a byproduct of tension and sometimes difficult interactions, but something good came from it. And sometimes strings of difficult interactions can lead to genuine community learning.

As I reflect on my comment, I might just simply affirm that there are times that it's okay to decide that further input might not be warranted, and it's okay to feel that way, without it being indicative of deeper meaning. I'm not sure how super helpful that is at the end of the day, except perhaps to say that I've felt value in being a bit more introspective about intentions at times, and it's been a good practice to work on a "discipline of silence" when I find that I'm in it for reasons other than to learn and encourage deeper thinking.

When I reflect on why I devote time to interaction with strangers over topics on the internet, the main motivation is to learn.

I like this a lot, and I think it will be in part formative for the way that I frame what I think are the most healthy sort of discussions. The flip side of this virtue (at least for me) is trying to figure out what sorts of vices encourage the opposite, and at which point vices are becoming more important than the virtues.
posted by SpacemanStix at 3:23 PM on March 20, 2016 [3 favorites]


Just a gentle nudge that, while dark and inclement winters such as the one recently fading are great times for looking at a screen and typing words into a box on it, these are the days that it is good to get out more...

Today is the Spring Equinox. For people in the Northern Hemisphere, daylight is lengthening day by day at its quickest rate, and the sun is above the horizon for more of the day than below it, near enough. Three months from now, the summer equinox, and the days start to contract towards the fall and winter.

Now is the time to remember the outdoors.

Maybe adjust your balance between the screen inside and the great outside a bit. Get a little healthier; a bit of exercise, some natural vitamin D with the sun on your skin, focus the eyes on distant horizons rather than a glowing screen, hour on hour, a few inches away. Touch a tree instead of a keyboard.

Re-find nature. Listen to it. Let it distract you from thoughts of who-wrote-what and who-said-what. Not so much arguing with the person you've been arguing online with, on and off, for days, weeks, months, in a digital stalemate - you'll still vote for the same person. They'll still be there, and they'll still read your comments (and respond) another day. You can go back to the screen, and the box on it, at any time.

But when summer's gone, it's gone till the next one.

Go outside a while. Breathe again. Look at the sky; it's big.

Enjoy your Spring and Summer, outside, where it is Spring and Summer.
posted by Wordshore at 5:00 PM on March 20, 2016


Now is the time to remember the outdoors.

I respect your good intentions but I do find this sort of thing to be another form of implication that participation or tension results from an emotional imbalance caused by a theorized lack of exposure to the outdoors, seasonal affective disorder, need for exercise, etc. while that may be a factor for some, it really isn't where everyone is coming from. For instance, I've been running and walking 6-10 miles per week since before Christmas, almost all outdoors, as well as hiking and a small amount of skiing. I don't think my participation choices reflect a poor relationship to the outdoors. I understand your motivation for attempting to defuse tension this way, and endorse the idea that it's great to get outdoors, and I don't think you have a single malicious intent, but I hope it's possible to recognize how this sort of thing can read as a suggestion that poor mental/emotional health is a factor in difficult discussions online. While that may at times be the case, I tend to find indirect suggestions that that's a motivation to be dismissive, especially where no one has requested such mood management advice.
posted by Miko at 6:54 PM on March 20, 2016 [3 favorites]


Personally, often a reason I have trouble disengaging is that disengagement is not respected as a valid strategy. When someone doesn't answer, often people follow with "Why aren't you answering? Is it because X? Why are you ducking the question?" And that often tempts me to respond when I know I'm in no mood to.

I wish we could develop a clear marker for "I'm out of the thread for can't-deal reasons, please stop targeting me."
posted by corb at 7:18 PM on March 20, 2016 [2 favorites]


Touch a tree instead of a keyboard.

Yeah, I think you meant well, but a sentence like this makes me wonder what assumptions you have about me.

Anyway, corb, I think what people are saying is that sometimes you can just walk away anyway. I don't know that I've seen too many explicit statements like "why aren't you answering?" but either way, anyone saying that is being totally unreasonable. This isn't a chat room, and as hard as it can be to leave something hanging, sometimes that's OK - whether it's because you don't want to deal anymore, or because you had to go make dinner.

I'm really, really bad at letting stuff go, so I'm not trying to sound like I'm spouting my own wisdom here. And certainly I worry a lot that unless I address something my reputation will be ruined, or something. But I think this is what people are saying: the consequences of not answering are lower than it sometimes seems. I'm still trying to wrap my head around it, but for now I'm trying to imagine how that might be true.
posted by teponaztli at 8:04 PM on March 20, 2016 [2 favorites]


Personally, often a reason I have trouble disengaging is that disengagement is not respected as a valid strategy. When someone doesn't answer, often people follow with "Why aren't you answering? Is it because X? Why are you ducking the question?" And that often tempts me to respond when I know I'm in no mood to.

My theory is that when someone (or multiple someones) is being a jackass, they are doing so in public and I'm not the only person who can see it, so stepping away and letting their jackassery stand will only reflect poorly on them, not on me. And the other thing is that, particularly in a larger, more contentious, and faster moving discussion, any one set of back-and-forths is just one small part of the overall thread and walking away, even from someone saying you are ducking the question, gets lost and forgotten very quickly.

As well, I'd agree that I almost never notice accusations of ducking the question, particularly compared to how often I have to scroll past tiresome and repetitious back and forths. I do see a lot of people making use of the "ask probing questions rather than just state their beliefs" approach, but that's a) not the same thing and b) it is equally easy to ignore. People can say what they want, but it is up to you if you allow them to set the terms and parameters of the discussion.
posted by Dip Flash at 4:37 AM on March 21, 2016 [3 favorites]


I'm typing this on a tree right now
posted by beerperson at 10:15 AM on March 21, 2016 [6 favorites]


Is there any value in keeping this thread open? We've moved well past the actual topic (should debates be on FanFare?) and onto the on-going Bernie-Hillary fight and whether or not we should all go outside more. This doesn't seem like it's likely to help anyone or anything.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 10:35 AM on March 21, 2016 [1 favorite]


"But I think this is what people are saying: the consequences of not answering are lower than it sometimes seems. I'm still trying to wrap my head around it, but for now I'm trying to imagine how that might be true."

I think that it's not only that the consequences are lower, it's that it's actually a gain, most certainly including reputation. If there's already been a back-and-forth that has an undertone of conflict -- like, say, two comments each -- then nineteen times out of twenty dropping it and walking away will be a net gain for literally everyone. Very much including yourself.

I went through two phases of learning this.

The first phase was observing my own reaction to two people digging into an argument -- if there's not progress made with some give-and-take within the first exchange, there's almost never going to be any that occurs later and after only a few argumentative comments I find myself intensely bored and somewhat irritated by it and I think less of both people. This is especially true of those small number of people who are notorious about this -- they loom pretty large in my perception of MetaFilter, in a very negative way, and I think this is true for many of us. There's almost nothing you can do to sabotage goodwill toward yourself here, ruin your reputation, than to ubiquitously be that guy who gets into extended arguments with numerous people, nurses grudges, and repeatedly is found in a taking-on-all-comers situation. I realized I very much don't want to be that guy. I don't want to be a more mild version of that guy. I don't want to be anything at all like that guy.

Then, after having put this into practice for awhile, and concurrently having developed an increasing habit of writing comments and then proofing them and ultimately discarding them, I realized that I personally felt better about being here and better about my persona here.

To the degree to which we learn and grow on MetaFilter, as a participant it comes from conversations that are friendly, not combative (even if passive-aggressively), where there's a lot of common ground. Even more so we learn observationally. Very little is learned from an antagonistic exchange -- not for the participants and not for the observers. Also, antagonistic exchanges provoke people into worse versions of themselves and often similarly provoke observers. If you're arguing with someone, it's almost without exception a loss for everyone.

I think what gets in the way of this for most people is misplaced pride, or an exaggerated and promiscuous sense of momentousness, or both. We do learn a lot here and we do grow from our participation here, but it is a slower, more cumulative thing. It comes from the assembly of a lot of little things we learn, a lot of small interactions, the repetition of certain ideas from a variety of people over a long period of time. It doesn't come from individual antagonistic exchanges. It may come from an entire thread that has a high ratio of antagonistic exchanges, but I strongly believe that this is largely despite those antagonistic exchanges, not because of them. And this is because I think in almost all cases, you can see parallel exchanges that aren't antagonistic that include the same information. The antagonism is noise, it's destructive, and it's almost always better to just walk away.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 10:52 AM on March 21, 2016 [3 favorites]


To rerail slightly, if the mods are still following this, is it a definite go-ahead for a "live event" tag on fanfare? Just the first (awesome) Eurovision post has gone up and I want to know if can dare dream of spending this year's final on the purple rather than Twitter.
posted by billiebee at 1:26 PM on March 21, 2016 [1 favorite]


I'm interested in pursuing that idea, yeah. I don't know what form it will take and it may remain a pretty ad-hoc sort of thing, but Eurovision is one of the top examples in my mind of fun livebloggy things that have always been sort of at odds with the blue but would fit better on FanFare.

All that said, we're working on a few different things at once right now and this isn't at the top of the priority list, so I don't want to get any firmer than that at the moment.

If someone feels like they'd like to make an effort to be a little bit of an ambassador on that front and touch base via the contact form a little periodically, that might not be a bad way to keep this stuff on my mind even while I'm distracted by other site stuff.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:40 PM on March 21, 2016 [1 favorite]


Thanks cortex.
posted by billiebee at 2:10 PM on March 21, 2016 [1 favorite]


There's almost nothing you can do to sabotage goodwill toward yourself here, ruin your reputation, than to ubiquitously be that guy who gets into extended arguments with numerous people, nurses grudges, and repeatedly is found in a taking-on-all-comers situation. I realized I very much don't want to be that guy.

Yeah, as the election season has gone on I've experienced a dim, but growing awareness of this, and it's in conflict with the part of me that wants to defend my reputation. Honestly, at this point I'm way less concerned about being right than about having looked like a jerk for the past couple months. Or worse - just looking immature and inconsistent. That's the most embarrassing potential outcome of all.
posted by teponaztli at 2:43 PM on March 21, 2016


Honestly, at this point I'm way less concerned about being right than about having looked like a jerk for the past couple months. Or worse - just looking immature and inconsistent. That's the most embarrassing potential outcome of all.

I don't think you did at all, for what it's worth. I mean, compared to my outside-of-Metafilter friend who says things like "Who cares? I don't talk about politics. I've never even voted!" everyone in the election threads comes off looking pretty good...
posted by sallybrown at 6:39 PM on March 21, 2016 [1 favorite]


Also, never underestimate the fleeting nature of human memory :)
posted by sallybrown at 6:40 PM on March 21, 2016


... whether or not we should all go outside more. This doesn't seem like it's likely to help anyone or anything
To be fair, going outside more is likely to help many of us, I think.
posted by dg at 1:32 AM on March 23, 2016 [2 favorites]


I would rather be indoors if it is raining and around here of late, that is more often than not.
posted by y2karl at 3:07 PM on March 23, 2016


'Cause it's cold and rainy. Not my favorite thing.
posted by y2karl at 3:09 PM on March 23, 2016


We had a dusting of snow and below freezing temperatures here in Kansas City a few days ago, and I just learned from my sister in Colorado Springs that there's a blizzard warning in effect there. I've been unhappy at the arrival of spring because I like the cold and snow.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 3:45 PM on March 23, 2016 [1 favorite]


Outside is quite nice here at the moment. It's that perfect time of year when the blistering heat of summer has faded and the days are sunny and hot, the nights cool enough to sleep. There's a short hiatus on complaining about the weather as we switch between complaining it's too hot and complaining it's too cold (cold being relative - single figures in c is almost an emergency).
posted by dg at 11:57 PM on March 23, 2016 [2 favorites]


After a mild, though damp, winter, it has been a pleasant Spring so far in this part of rural England. As the fields and footpaths drain and dry, so there are more options for walking without being quickly encased in mud. Snowdrops are feisty, daffodils are in bloom, and crocuses paint random splashes of blue and purple to the brown soil. Life is stirring.
posted by Wordshore at 1:13 AM on March 24, 2016 [2 favorites]


Those are lovely pictures, Wordshore.
posted by teponaztli at 2:57 PM on March 24, 2016 [1 favorite]




I'm posting this here because meta commentary doesn't belong in the main thread.

cortex said: Also not for nothing, digging in on endless arguments about whether or not someone else is doing That Thing also ends up feeding into the dynamic of That Thing and people's apparent mutual inability to just fucking move on is half the reason we're as fried about this shit as we are. "Cut it out" is not "...unless you think someone else is doing a bad job in which case GO FOR IT" and I really, really wish folks would make a more consistent effort in general here to just roll eyes and move on quietly with the non-But-They-Started aspects of the discussion.

I'd like to note that you mods are not the only ones who are tired of the incessant, ugly insistence on the part of some members of this community that Clinton supporters have moral / ethical failings. It feels like many of us have done our damndest to flag/eyeroll at personal attacks and move on. I tried politely asking people not to namecall at least once or twice and in at least one case got yelled at by another mefite -- but that request is one that you all have had to make a whole bunch of times in the election threads. Letting it go when people keep doing the same damned thing over and over again doesn't feel like it accomplishes very much.

We deal with the same behaviour in threads on many, many other topics. Including circumcision and Apple vs. Android threads. Personal attacks make threads a far more toxic environment which feels a hell of a lot less welcoming.

It's frustrating.
posted by zarq at 11:15 AM on March 28, 2016 [2 favorites]


This election has been a shitshow out in the world for a variety of reasons, over which understandably no one here has any control, but that shitshow has come back around to the site in big and little ways to a degree that has me realizing just how lucky we were with the relatively mild tenor of the (nonetheless still tiring and tedious) 2012 cycle on the site, realizing that I wasn't just misremembering 2008 as worse because it was my first rodeo as a mod during a US presidential election cycle but because it was in fact worse in many of the same ways that 2016 has been already.

There are a lot of folks on the site who want to talk about the election, and about the candidates, and all that is expected and understandable and basically okay. And we're trying to accommodate that within reason without letting it literally take over the front page. And there's plenty of reasonably interesting, MetaFiltery discussion and annotation of stuff going on out in the world in an electoral context. But it's a lot of energy coming into the site on one particular front, and its creating long and repetitive discussions, and that energy's not consistently going in good directions.

And so, along with the better bits of discussion, people are being everything from terse to sharp to condescending to outright grudgey and interpersonal about shit. They're doing that about Clinton and Clinton supporters, they're doing it about Sanders and Sanders supporters, and they're doing it about every fine sliver of disagreement or ideological difference or campaign blip or historical sore spot that has been or threatened to be manifest in the current electoral zeitgeist. And lots of people are grumpy at the folks who are doing it in a way that's unsympathetic to them, in a classic mutual "no, THEY are the problem" way that nobody wants to be called on either, or take the high road on vs calling out and thereby perpetuating.

It's tiring and it's tedious and I don't see an easy path for us to actually shut it down without living far more full-time in political threads than is good for anybody's mental health, or us getting really aggressively draconian about disallowing any personal or editorial component to any comments on the broad subject. Neither of those are good plans. Neither is, I manage to believe 90% of the time, just literally shutting down any discussion of the fucking election on the site whatsoever.

And so here we are: trying to hobble along in this weird "talk about the election, but not too much and not in too many threads, and try to not be obnoxious in general or to each other about it" compromise place that is basically what MetaFilter looks like during the long, slow peaks of an election cycle. I don't have a magic wand to unfuck the political landscape, and as much as we as a mod team are trying to use what tools we do have to keep MeFi discussion specifically from going too sour that's also a pretty Sisyphean, catch-as-catch-can deal.

What I'd like to do is to be able to ask everybody to just cut it the fuck out with the more obnoxious stuff and have that suffice. But it's profoundly unlikely to suddenly somehow do so where it hasn't so many times previously, especially since no one can manage to agree on who and what is the actual problem, because look at this person, did you see what they were...

And so instead we're going to have to keep interjecting periodically, monitoring these rambling and repeating discussions to the extent that we're able, drawing a line where we can find one on crappier behavior, and dealing with people feeling frustrated that on a site where case-by-case judgement calls are the accepted norm for moderation enforcement those calls aren't as consistent or as consistently favorable to their preferences as they think they should be.

Whatever frustration you are experiencing regarding political discussion on MetaFilter, I guarantee you it is less by far than that of the moderation staff.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:58 PM on March 28, 2016 [8 favorites]


Cortex, is there currently any way to buy mods beer?
posted by corb at 1:05 PM on March 28, 2016 [3 favorites]


hello
posted by beerperson at 1:21 PM on March 28, 2016 [3 favorites]


I am so sorry for the mods - at this point the thread reads like a combination of worn-out-socks-with-holes arguments that are being repeated for the 50th time and cat claws scratching anyone who wanders past. With the occasional nice candy bar thrown in of a cool article I wouldn't have come across otherwise.

Someone mentioned waaaaaaay upthread that part of the "ganged up on" feeling had something to do with favorites - sort of like "heeey this person is being kind of a jerk and then these other people are like "YEAH high five!" For people who feel like that, it might help to turn off seeing favorites for a bit. You can always turn them back on!
posted by sallybrown at 1:36 PM on March 28, 2016 [2 favorites]


{catches up on thread}
{looks in folder of draft FPPs}
{thinks this is perhaps maybe not the best time to finish and launch the post about the 2018 US mid-term elections}


I too will commit to buying a mod a drink when I do a meet-up thing (I will probably visit the Seattle this summer, thus likely occasioning such a purchase).
posted by Wordshore at 1:55 PM on March 28, 2016 [1 favorite]


The 2018 mid-term elections...

The year after that will see Roy Batty's obituary. He is no doubt looking at C beams off the shoulder of Orion right now.

No wonder, the ice caps are melting so fast -- all those natural gas flares from the fracking wells in the Greater LA Basin will be kicking in soon.
posted by y2karl at 2:30 PM on March 28, 2016


{Breaks open Emergency Light Relief seal}

Everyone come together for this cat.
posted by Wordshore at 2:32 PM on March 28, 2016 [3 favorites]


Disney has so thoroughly shaped my mind that I 100% expected that cat to start singing Gilbert & Sullivan.
posted by benito.strauss at 2:44 PM on March 28, 2016 [1 favorite]


Hamilton, surely.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 4:23 PM on March 28, 2016 [2 favorites]


I'd like to note that you mods are not the only ones who are tired of the incessant, ugly insistence on the part of some members of this community that Clinton supporters have moral / ethical failings. It feels like many of us have done our damndest to flag/eyeroll at personal attacks and move on. I tried politely asking people not to namecall at least once or twice and in at least one case got yelled at by another mefite -- but that request is one that you all have had to make a whole bunch of times in the election threads.

I think the way you frame your callouts as if this is solely an issue of Clinton supporters under attack is inaccurate. Both in 2008 and now all of the worst behavior is flowing in both directions. And honestly, I think Clinton supporters have been much more focused on the supporters of the other side than Bernie supporters have been. The more common bad behavior from Bernie supporters is uncharitable/sexist commentary about Hillary herself. That is inherently harder to moderate, because she is a public figure and the election is about the choice to support her or to support someone else.

So that puts Clinton supporters in a tough spot, I think people here get that. You want to call some commentary out as sexist and there is definitely polling evidence that sexism is playing a roll. I think what the mods are asking is just not to paint with too broad a brush on that and not to personalize it about people in the thread. But yeah, when the data suggests sexism is an issue among a group of supporters it's not unfair criticism to ask people to acknowledge that reality.

As for lungful's comment you called out, I dunno it looked like sarcasm aping the language people sometimes use to explain voting for Hillary to me. The point was that no matter how sane and pragmatic your policies are the Republicans aren't going to pass them, single payer is not unique there. Still, better to avoid sarcasm when the conversation is heated and miscommunication can cause people to feel attacked so I don't blame you for taking issue.
posted by Drinky Die at 4:36 PM on March 28, 2016 [4 favorites]


You know, I'm just going to take cortex's comment as the most reasonable thing I've come across on this topic in a while. Does it touch on all the nuances of why I felt attacked at times? Does it acknowledge unfairness that maybe I feel? No, but that's not the point. The point is that I feel like I owe an apology to the mods for being a part of any of the burden that we've all put on them. I owe an apology to some users for getting carried away. I wasn't trying to! But obviously things get heated, or misinterpreted, or whatever. I'm just going to accept that I've been whiny and bratty sometimes, even if maybe I had a decent point here or there. I'm pretty embarrassed to have written as many comment about this as I did. In fact, I'm pretty embarrassed that I ranted in this thread, but that's in the past. That's not to say I'm ashamed, but I would have liked to have participated in a different way.

I'm the kind of person who always raises their hand in class, but you know, it's also kind of nice to just stay quiet and listen. Yeah, people are going to say bad stuff, and other people might even agree with that. But the stakes are not high unless you want them to be, and honestly I just can't summon the energy to keep it that way anymore (I'm not talking about the stakes of the election, which are obviously super high, I mean the stakes of having to say "you've completely misunderstood where I'm coming from!" to people who say "Bernie supporters are all...").

I'm not saying everyone owes the apology I do, or that they should all shut up and be quiet. I'm just saying I wish I'd participated differently and I like how I'm engaging with these threads now. I'm not going to be all "and we fundamentally agree on 90% of things," because I don't want our tone or whatever to be predicated on us agreeing about stuff. I guess what I'm trying to get at is... I'm writing more here when I really don't have THAT much to say, except sorry mods, and also maybe the election will be over someday and we can get back to what really matters, like arguing about religion.
posted by teponaztli at 7:14 PM on March 28, 2016 [2 favorites]


...er, and now I'm worried this looks like an attack or excessive criticism or something. Please understand that I've really appreciated people's input, and I wasn't trying to do that "well, when I get angry..." thing, but was actually only talking about my own participation.
posted by teponaztli at 7:20 PM on March 28, 2016


Any threads have the recent town hall with The Donald? He's our first post-Baudrillard candidate.
posted by klangklangston at 11:10 AM on March 30, 2016 [1 favorite]


And lots of people are grumpy at the folks who are doing it in a way that's unsympathetic to them, in a classic mutual "no, THEY are the problem" way that nobody wants to be called on either, or take the high road on vs calling out and thereby perpetuating.

I apologise in advance if this AskMeFi should, as I now fear, rapidly degenerate into a vitriolic "milk in the cup first" vs "tea in the cup first" fight of diametrically-opposed cultural values, requiring heavy Mod involvement.
posted by Wordshore at 2:12 PM on March 30, 2016


Any threads have the recent town hall with The Donald? He's our first post-Baudrillard candidate.

There was some discussion of it as it was happening in this election thread, but not overmuch.
posted by cjelli at 4:06 PM on March 30, 2016


To save anyone from having to comb through all the comments, I probably should have added that the discussion about the town hall starts around here, but is quite spread out.
posted by cjelli at 4:07 PM on March 30, 2016


If someone feels like they'd like to make an effort to be a little bit of an ambassador on that front and touch base via the contact form a little periodically, that might not be a bad way to keep this stuff on my mind even while I'm distracted by other site stuff.

Nudge.
posted by Wordshore at 1:39 AM on March 31, 2016


If you don't put the milk in first you hate America and all human civilization and you are the true reason Gore lost in 2000.
posted by Drinky Die at 3:22 AM on March 31, 2016 [3 favorites]


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