No "children" category July 16, 2019 8:18 AM   Subscribe

I just posted an AskMe in the Grab Bag category because I did not find a Parenting/Grandparenting or Children category. Librarians and others, should I have posted it to Human Relations instead? Just looking for a general consensus about where to post such things next time until/unless we add a Children category to Ask. (I think this has been raised in the past but couldn't find a thread when I did a quick search.)
posted by Bella Donna to MetaFilter-Related at 8:18 AM (29 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

Looks like many (most?) of the AskMes with the "parenting" tag end up in the human relations category, unless there is some other specific intersection that makes more sense (e.g. "media and arts" for a question about what books I should read to my kid).
posted by somanyamys at 8:34 AM on July 16 [2 favorites]


I am not an expert on the subject, but my understanding is that children are humans.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:15 AM on July 16 [40 favorites]


I have three children and I can confirm that while Women are from Venus and Men are from Mars, my children are human although they sometimes lack the ability/desire to use logic and reason.
posted by AugustWest at 9:34 AM on July 16 [1 favorite]


Computers are technology, and yet...
posted by under_petticoat_rule at 9:36 AM on July 16


The categories on Ask are pretty loose and often a question could fit in more than one of them or doesn't seem quite right for any of them. Parenting questions can be medical (health & fitness) or about hobbies (sports, hobbies & recreation) or stuff to buy (shopping) or watch (media & arts) or about school (education) or ... just a grab bag if you think it isn't any of the above.

Not that parenting would necessarily be a bad category to include -- lots of parenting advice sites exist and it is kind of its own category for a reason -- just that there isn't one right answer to where parenting questions go in its absence.
posted by jacquilynne at 9:40 AM on July 16 [3 favorites]


All of these claims that you are human only reinforce my beliefs that you're all sentient swarms of a thousand beetles in a skin suit.

Anyway, your question seems Human-y and Relationship-ish to me because it's about entertaining said sentient swarms.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 9:42 AM on July 16 [4 favorites]


there's also no "no children" category; should my mountain goats questions go under "human relations" or "religion & philosophy"

(I don't think it's unreasonable to think there might be a parenting/children category distinct from human relations)
posted by dismas at 9:42 AM on July 16 [6 favorites]


We had this discussion not that long ago (which I point out not to say "you should have known that" but to say "others have thought the same thing") but it obviously didn't go anywhere yet.
posted by drlith at 9:49 AM on July 16 [2 favorites]


We are I am totally a human and not a sentient swarm of a thousand beetles. I enjoy normal human activities such as ingesting human food through my one mouth and walking around clumsily on my two human legs and enjoying that tiny fraction of the world's beauty which is visible to me through two non-compound eyes.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:55 AM on July 16 [18 favorites]


For mod word on it I'll just say quickly that, yeah, reworking Ask categories isn't on the roadmap right now. Totally understand where the idea is coming from and it may be something we do try to revisit in the future, but there's no specific plan let alone timeline for that at the moment.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:00 AM on July 16 [3 favorites]


Librarians and others, should I have posted it to Human Relations instead?

Yes! Though I think a lot of people find similar questions via tags, so just make sure you have good tags on your question and people will be able to find it and co-locate it with other similar questions, so you are fine. Way back in the day there was talk of some heavy-duty search capabilities for AskMe (so you could drill down within a category and tags in a very specific sort of way) and that didn't really come to pass, so for now I think tags are more important than categories most of the time anyhow.
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 10:02 AM on July 16 [4 favorites]


On preview, I typed this out before cortex’s response, but I’ll leave it anyway.

I have posted 9 AskMes having to do with my kids. The categories I chose include:

Society and culture
Grab bag
Sports, Hobbies, and Recreation
Travel and Transportation
Human Relations
Media and Arts

While my questions all had something to do with those individual categories, in each case I think I was looking for advice from other parents specifically and the question about traveling with children, for example, was specifically a parenting question more than it was a travel question.

We totally need a Children Askme category.

And to answer the immediate counter-argument, “Why don’t you post your question to a parenting website?” The answer is because they are terrible, those people are crazy, and you Mefites are my people. Mefite child-caregivers have already been giving each other trusted advice for a long time. I don’t think it’s the end of the world if it doesn’t happen because the current system works to some extent, but it would be nice to follow the Children category for some people, it would build community and I frankly don’t see a down side.

as an aside, it’s fun to look through one’s own question history after they’ve had kids. I’ll bet a lot of them look like mine: Need songs for a baby playlist while we get the nursery ready (note we used this playlist all through year one) —> help us figure out all the cultural nuances of naming our soon to be born boy —> oh my god, my mother is overstepping her bounds with our new baby —> the two year old is making us crazy, how do we stay sane?
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 10:02 AM on July 16 [11 favorites]


jessamyn: "I think tags are more important than categories most of the time anyhow"

Yeah when the time comes for the managers of this site to rethink things, they should look at the data and see how often categories are used vs. tags. My guess is that you could probably eliminate categories altogether without too much of a loss. Can't be too technically complicated just to hide categories without touching the underlying database.
posted by crazy with stars at 10:18 AM on July 16 [4 favorites]


I do just click a category when I'm in a mood like "do I want to think about this?" or what have you. So I like categories. For seeing advice on similar questions to mine, tags are very useful.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 11:27 AM on July 16 [6 favorites]


It’s totally OK with me if we do not rework the categories. Human relations, in my brain, defaults to adult relationships (friendships, romances, marriages, fights with neighbors, etc.). That is why I asked the question. Things that are obvious to some/many are not necessarily obvious to me. Also, I’m bad at tags. In short, MeFites are a land of contrasts. The responses have been helpful. Thanks!
posted by Bella Donna at 11:33 AM on July 16 [5 favorites]


Like, it has literally never occurred to me to search by tags. Oh man, I am an outlier in so many areas, must I be one on tags as well? No wait, what I meant to say was, how delightful to realize there another way to find great, relevant MF content. Yay!
posted by Bella Donna at 11:38 AM on July 16 [2 favorites]


I am vaguely remembering but currently unable to find a fairly recent MeTa where folks were asking for a wiki page that collected parenting-related Asks, I think in part due to how difficult it currently is to find relevant past questions. I was interested because I create wiki pages for fun, but the current tags situation feels like a disorganized mess of unfun proportions for a project like that.

To create a wiki page, I think a Parenting & Kids category could help. I have spent a lot of time searching with tags to add AskMe posts to Get a Lawyer and ThereIsHelp, and one of the reasons I add to the wiki pages is because the tags feel like such a frustrating and time-consuming way to navigate the site.
posted by Little Dawn at 11:41 AM on July 16 [2 favorites]


there's also no "no children" category; should my mountain goats questions go under "human relations" or "religion & philosophy"

We could have a "Lifeforms" category, and questions about human children would be filed under that.
posted by Faint of Butt at 11:46 AM on July 16 [2 favorites]


We could have a "Lifeforms" category, and questions about human children would be filed under that.

Tiny little lifeforms!

I for one would enjoy reading questions about human children and pets & animals all mingled together in a lifeforms category. This may be an unusual dream.
posted by readinghippo at 11:58 AM on July 16 [11 favorites]


"Am I really compatible with the lifeform I've been dating?"

"Best tips for putting a fussy animate object to sleep?"

"What should I name my entity?"
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:07 PM on July 16 [23 favorites]


my understanding is that children are humans

I’m just out of a large supermarket and I beg to differ
posted by billiebee at 12:21 PM on July 16 [13 favorites]


Putting children or other living entities in a grab bag feels wrong
posted by The Toad at 2:26 PM on July 16 [1 favorite]


Pretty sure children are chaos entities
posted by Eyebrows McGee (staff) at 3:32 PM on July 16 [4 favorites]


As long as there are air holes in the bag they're fine.
posted by ODiV at 3:48 PM on July 16 [7 favorites]


See that’s the kind of advice people with entities need!
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 5:17 PM on July 16 [4 favorites]


PSA: anyone interested in a hypothetical Children/Parenting category on AskMe might also enjoy the Mefite parents Facebook group [More Inside].
posted by john hadron collider at 6:38 PM on July 16 [4 favorites]


PSA: anyone interested in a hypothetical Children/Parenting category on AskMe might also enjoy the Mefite parents Facebook group [More Inside].

Yes, it is a great group of people!
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 7:10 AM on July 17


We're going to need more information to give the best advice. Is your lifeform capable of maintaining its own temperature? How many legs does it have? Is it gelatinous, or made of light? Does it have a carapace?
posted by cmyk at 7:15 AM on July 17 [4 favorites]


Does it have a carapace?

Non-chitinous- it’s still in its larval stage.
posted by Devils Rancher at 4:05 PM on July 17 [3 favorites]


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