Would others find it helpful if it was easier to report a post? January 22, 2019 9:03 AM   Subscribe

Do others want the ability to Report a post (on Metafilter or Ask) without actually clicking into it first?
posted by Baeria to Feature Requests at 9:03 AM (44 comments total)

Since so many posts have [more inside] I think every post should be read in full before being reported.

I can certainly see a post that begins with "This is why you should declaw a cat [more inside]" should be reported ASAP but I hardly think one extra click is really a hardship.
posted by bondcliff at 9:08 AM on January 22 [34 favorites]


I report things semi-regularly, and I have no issue with having to open the post and see the full context of it -- tags, more inside, initial comments, etc. -- before I report it. Plus, not having report on the front page leaves less for me to accidentally click on when I'm scrolling on mobile.
posted by jacquilynne at 9:14 AM on January 22 [9 favorites]


I'm curious about the use case here: what is the circumstance under which you would want to report a post without clicking into it, and why is it not acceptable to use the contact form for those occasions? (Also, by "report" do you mean "flag"?)

Thinking about my own question, I guess what I can see is a case in which a reader might feel like "this post seems likely to be filled with triggering-to-me content AND be for whatever reason inappropriate for MetaFilter" and therefore not want to actually look into the content of the post (which is totally understandable and 100% okay). In that sort of a case, fundamentally what "reporting" a post looks like is asking the mods to check it out. Is that the sort of thing you have in mind?

Because honestly I think that using the contact form is a good solution to that sort of thing, when it arises. To my mind, one of the strengths of Metafilter is that it is modded by active, dedicated mods who exercise their judgment, and in my experience they are all very quick at responding to "hey, could you check on something for me?" sort of requests which is what I understand this to be.

If I have misunderstood what you are proposing, I hope you will let me know.
posted by gauche at 9:17 AM on January 22 [17 favorites]


i would like the ability to report a post as it is being typed
posted by mintcake! at 9:37 AM on January 22 [42 favorites]


No, I do not want that.
posted by ThatCanadianGirl at 9:54 AM on January 22 [10 favorites]


The ability for me kneejerk report a post that I have only the barest amount of information about has like, a level of site interaction value that is so low as to be incalculable. On the off chance that I am somehow the first to see an obvious troll or spam post, the few seconds it would take me to click through and flag it harm no one and there is no prize for winning the race to be the first flagger.
posted by poffin boffin at 9:54 AM on January 22 [18 favorites]


If you wish to complain about a post without opening it, the link to contact the mods directly is at the bottom of the front page.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:01 AM on January 22 [6 favorites]


I was expecting a below-the-fold example of a time when this would be useful or necessary.
posted by showbiz_liz at 10:33 AM on January 22 [5 favorites]


there is no prize for winning the race to be the first flagger.

Wait till you see the MeFi contest I have planned for February
posted by duffell at 10:41 AM on January 22 [31 favorites]


I can envision a scenario where you don't want to actually see a post before flagging it but I agree with the others above that the contact form can handle this. Metafilter is not so fast-moving that the flag needs to be tied to the post. I can see why on, say, a popular subreddit this wouldn't work but here I think it's fine given the pace of posting.
posted by Wretch729 at 10:47 AM on January 22 [5 favorites]


I think that's not a good idea, tbh. As others have noted, you can use the contact form if necessary.
posted by holborne at 11:42 AM on January 22


No, I don't really want or need this, I don't feel the system is failing in this regard currently.
posted by smoke at 12:01 PM on January 22 [3 favorites]


OP needed to state what need this would have addressed. It would have been best to be below the fold, and failing that, I think they should've stuck around after posting to see the reaction, and then offer their examples.

Trying to mindread, if the desire for this arises out of concern for seeing content that triggers someone, then I think said theoretical reviewer would have to weigh their own concern for their own mental health against their desire to contribute to the community by flagging, and perhaps choose another means of contributing.

If it's born of something like obvious spam, it's not too much of a UI burden to click through and then flag.

If it's born of something where the poster just doesn't like what's being said, then I would definitely be against making flagging more easy -- Metafilter's always been a respite from kneejerk reactions, and the UI shouldn't be altered to facilitate them.
posted by WCityMike at 12:06 PM on January 22 [2 favorites]


I feel like if a post is both so off-base that it's inappropriate for Metafilter and so toxic that you don't want to click through and read it, you can probably trust the rest of the site's membership to take care of it.

I've seen things that you people wouldn't believe…
posted by Kadin2048 at 12:12 PM on January 22 [4 favorites]


OK, thanks people. I tend to be something of a social-media canary (not in the singing sense), so I was wondering if others had formed similar impressions yet. It's helpful to know, so, thanks.
posted by Baeria at 12:35 PM on January 22 [1 favorite]


I think they should've stuck around after posting to see the reaction
I believe there is a still a queue for MetaTalk, so you don't always know when your submission will be posted.
posted by soelo at 12:38 PM on January 22 [4 favorites]


If you want the ability to let the moderators know about a post that you suspect doesn't belong but don't want to read for triggery reasons, then there's also the ability to email them directly.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 3:38 PM on January 22 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: this is why you should declaw a cat
posted by killdevil at 4:09 PM on January 22 [2 favorites]


The only time I have ever flagged a post before clicking on it was once when there was a huge block of uncut text and no [more inside]. I can't really imagine a scenario where this would be necessary due to the semi-crowdsourced nature of flagging.
posted by Mizu at 6:17 PM on January 22


Yeah I agree, if you can't at least make it all the way to the bottom of the post, you definitely haven't looked carefully enough to know if it's actually a problem. There are so many posts where the [more inside] is radically different from the above-the-fold section (in either direction—sometimes posts that look totally routine on the front page of Ask turn out absolutely horrifying if you click through!) that you really should read it all before you flag.

I also think there should be some kind of enforcement for reading the whole Ask before answering. I'm not saying I'm a saint in this regard myself, but I bet approximately a billion percent of the bad answers I've given have stemmed from not reading closely enough.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 6:18 PM on January 22 [8 favorites]


Also I often Flag With Note as basically, "Eh, maybe?" One of the best things about that new(ish) feature is that you can flag things as like, "Hey, take a look at this." You don't have to make the judgment call yourself, the mods are going to look and then use their own judgment regardless.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 6:27 PM on January 22


To be honest, ANY flags on anything draw the mods attention. Perhaps some with more urgency than others, but they've said several times that they look at everything that is flagged and that flagging them is the fastest way to get them to notice something. Faster than the contact form.

I do like Flag With Note. But I've been led to believe that just flagging with anything draws the desired eyeballs.
posted by hippybear at 8:44 PM on January 22 [2 favorites]


That's true, and in the past I would flag that kind of thing as "Other" but for whatever reason I feel better if I can flag as "Hmm, this seems weird."
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 3:17 AM on January 23


Yeah I agree, if you can't at least make it all the way to the bottom of the post, you definitely haven't looked carefully enough to know if it's actually a problem.

I mean, this is normally true, but there are some exceptions. There's some spam, in particular, that is really instantly obvious. Or things that are formatting issues, or triggery stuff above the fold. I don't necessarily see it as a huge burden to click through in those cases, just like, I don't think we need to assume that people are making snap judgments in places it isn't warranted.
posted by Sequence at 8:13 AM on January 23 [1 favorite]


So, the book cover thing is outdated.
posted by clavdivs at 9:08 AM on January 23


i would like the ability to report a post as it is being typed

but only to my higher self, while I'm typing it.
posted by philip-random at 2:37 PM on January 23 [2 favorites]


My jealous self would like to know just how high your awesome self was when posting that?

Also, what is a social-media canary please and thank you?
posted by riverlife at 5:36 PM on January 23 [4 favorites]


Also, what is a social-media canary please and thank you?

Because Poe wrote on both!


No, wait, that's not right...
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 2:20 AM on January 24 [4 favorites]


This doesn't strike me as a particularly necessary change. I'm not free, against it per se, but I don't think there's too much friction in flagging posts, and that the contact form is a viable option for the (hopefully) rare occurrence of something being particularly triggering.

Also, what is a social-media canary please and thank you?

There's potential for a joke about tweets here, but I can't get it to come together.
posted by Dysk at 2:24 AM on January 24 [1 favorite]


It's the canary-in-a-coal-mine thing, right? Like, the poster feels like they notice trends and such on social media in advance of the general public?

I tend to be something of a social-media canary (not in the singing sense), so I was wondering if others had formed similar impressions yet.

This interpretation depends pretty heavily on that 'yet,' so, as usual, ymmv.
posted by box at 5:07 AM on January 24 [1 favorite]


This thread has taken an unexpected turn for the passive-aggressive.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 6:52 AM on January 24 [1 favorite]


Do others want the ability to Report a post (on Metafilter or Ask) without actually clicking into it first?

No. The cost to benefit is simply not worth it, in a myriad of ways.
posted by RolandOfEld at 7:20 AM on January 24 [2 favorites]


No.
posted by aspersioncast at 1:03 PM on January 24


nope
posted by Pendragon at 5:52 AM on January 25


I'm reminded of those who can't just accept one from a box of chocolates, because it might contain the "wrong" filling. You ever been offered a chocolate and noticed someone was there before you, who actually squeezed some of them, breaking the surface so the filling was revealed? Does anybody ever take that broken chocolate? No. Is this behavior tolerated in some circles? Yes. Do we want a MeFi that looks like that? My answer is entirely in the negative.
posted by Rash at 3:00 PM on January 26


Well, no social media platform stays optimal forever. But, maybe people pouring on the positivity will work here, along the lines of "post the comments that you want to see"...
posted by Baeria at 10:57 PM on January 26


You have made a couple of vague comments that imply some dark future that you foresee that this software change will help with, but it is all very mysterious. Please try to clearly explain the use case for this software change so the rest of us plebes can follow along with your train of thought.
posted by jacquilynne at 5:57 AM on January 27 [7 favorites]


Baeria, you could post the comment that several of us have asked you for, which is the one in which you describe the circumstances in which this feature that you are proposing will be more useful than the status quo. What problem do you think this solves?

I'm asking in good faith, as I asked several days ago, because I honestly cannot think of a use case that makes this a compelling feature, and I am truly curious about why you think it is. So far in this thread you have made two comments that come across to me as passive-aggressively suggesting that you are so far ahead of everybody else that this feature's utility seems obvious to you and we will all have to get there in our own plodding time. It doesn't feel to me like you wanted people to answer the question you asked, so much as you wanted people to say "yes" to it. This is how it comes across to me: I obviously do not know your intent, but you might benefit from knowing how these comments land on a stranger's ears.

I encourage you to use your words and answer some of the questions that people are putting to you. If you find that you are not able to write up clearly what you are proposing and why it is compelling, that might be a sign to you that your idea is not fully baked. And that's okay! I suspect most people have, at times, ideas that seem quite compelling to them but fall apart when described. One of the useful things that writing can do for you is require you to get concrete and specific about what you are thinking. If you can't explain something to someone, that might be because you don't really understand it yourself.
posted by gauche at 7:31 AM on January 28 [4 favorites]


Asking for further explication is reasonable, but "use your words" seems like pretty tone deaf phrasing.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:50 PM on January 28 [1 favorite]


@Chrysostom, I also hear "use your words" as the phrase for toddlers who are acting out (and hence find it intensely patronising), but it's also used extensively in places such as Captain Awkward just to mean "speak up"/"ask directly". That might be more how it's intended here.
posted by Cheese Monster at 3:12 PM on January 28


I really can't imagine this thread is going anywhere productive. The proposal is clearly not happening. Why exactly are we getting all shirty with the OP? To what end?

It would be nice if we could be a little more charitable, or even just say nothing.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 6:02 PM on January 28 [2 favorites]


gauche I'm not sure where you're going but the first scenario that popped into my head when I was writing my original comment above was an FPP along the lines of:

title: [famous person] questions whether being bi is a thing
Some people are mad, but Soandso makes a good point. Is there really such a thing as bisexuals? [more inside]

It seems pretty obvious the post/thread is going to be hot garbage, and reading the link or the rest of the post isn't necessary to guess that and could be distressing for those tired of having to re-fight battles on issues like that one.

As I said, in my opinion this can be handled by either ignoring the post or using the contact form, but it's not crazy to ask about being able to flag it sight-unseen.
posted by Wretch729 at 6:26 PM on January 31


title: [famous person] questions whether being bi is a thing
Some people are mad, but Soandso makes a good point. Is there really such a thing as bisexuals? [more inside]

It seems pretty obvious the post/thread is going to be hot garbage, and reading the link or the rest of the post isn't necessary to guess that and could be distressing for those tired of having to re-fight battles on issues like that one.


Actually, I could easily see that leading to a deliberately provocatively titled essay with the point "yes, duh, and here's why" with the "some people are mad" being about how some people were responding to a public proclamation that bi people are valid.

I don't think it should be possible to flag a post without looking at the whole thing.
posted by Lexica at 6:46 PM on January 31


I've wanted this; pretty sure someone has asked before and I was supportive then too. But it's not anything I'm going to go to the mat about.
posted by Mitheral at 7:06 PM on January 31


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