Hide or Exclude COVID in AskMeFi ? March 13, 2020 3:56 PM   Subscribe

Could we get a 'no COVID' filter for Metafilter and AskMeFi sites? I understand that we shouldn't have sidebar filters for everything, but I do think the COVID posts are multiplying to the level of USPolitical posts and threads. Am I missing something in the MyAsk preferences--I don't see a way to exclude tags there? thanks for info.
posted by calgirl to Feature Requests at 3:56 PM (35 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

I'm not sure we have something for this for Ask right now; on MyMeFi for the blue you can enter excluded tags but I don't *think* that functionality exists on Ask. That said, frimble would be the expert on the question and may be able to provide more info tomorrow Austria time.

We've had some discussions mod-side about trying to provide either a covid-specific or more generalized tag-based filtering option similar to the blue's MyMeFi excluded tags or the US Politics widget, and that's something we can continue to examine. If folks want to discuss that or related ideas in here, I welcome that.

One thing to keep in mind right now is that, in among everything else, Austria has taken a bunch of covid-related mitigation efforts that likely mean frimble will be busier with parenting duties than we'd have guess a week ago, so implementation on stuff may be slower than it'd otherwise ideally be during what is normally the school year. So please bear with us there all else aside.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:59 PM on March 13 [8 favorites]


I would also support filtering COVID out of ask.me as I view it. Please. Thank you. and hurrah.
posted by crush at 4:01 PM on March 13 [14 favorites]


The brute force solution might be to set your My Ask preferences to every category except "health & fitness". That would probably filter out most of them from My Ask.
posted by Huffy Puffy at 4:16 PM on March 13 [6 favorites]


Right now I am appreciating reading those posts, but I agree that this would be a good addition, if it is technically possible.
posted by Dip Flash at 4:20 PM on March 13 [5 favorites]


God, yes, I would also appreciate the ability to filter them. Ideally, I could view them in isolation when I want to (since some do have relevant questions and info for me!), but when I go to the main page I want to see other things right now.
posted by lesser weasel at 5:03 PM on March 13 [2 favorites]


In the meantime, I wonder if anybody could write a GreaseMonkey script that would help?

It's been a while since I've done any GreaseMonkey so I'm PROBABLY not a good person to throw it together, but if no one else does, I might have a go at it sometime next week.
posted by kristi at 5:09 PM on March 13 [1 favorite]


I'd actually appreciate a megathread with the numerous articles combined.
posted by Ahmad Khani at 7:08 PM on March 13 [11 favorites]


> The brute force solution might be to set your My Ask preferences to every category except "health & fitness". That would probably filter out most of them from My Ask.

It’ll help somewhat, but there are also coronavirus-related questions in all of these topics right now:
  • Work & Money
  • Human Relations
  • Education
  • Technology
  • Computers & Internet
  • Travel & Transportation
  • Science & Nature
  • Society & Culture
  • Food & Drink
  • Media & Arts
  • Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation
posted by mbrubeck at 10:05 PM on March 13 [6 favorites]


> I'd actually appreciate a megathread with the numerous articles combined.

katra has been collecting useful links from the blue and the green on the wiki.
posted by mbrubeck at 10:08 PM on March 13 [6 favorites]


there are also coronavirus-related questions in all of these topics right now: [list]

Do those have only those tags, and not Health & Fitness? I would think filtering out H&F would exclude any questions that have that tag, regardless of any other tags they may also have. Does it not work that way?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 5:37 AM on March 14


I too would appreciate a simple way to show/hide COVID posts.
posted by ZeusHumms at 6:07 AM on March 14 [2 favorites]


Those are categories, not tags; each question is in one category. (You can see the category under the question text, and it's clickable.)
posted by Huffy Puffy at 6:37 AM on March 14

> I'd actually appreciate a megathread with the numerous articles combined.
Yeah, maybe a summary of the accumulated wisdom of COVID-19 AskMe threads would help so people don't have to read them individually. Here's what I've learned of the AskMe consensus.

DON'T:
  • Go to work
  • Shake hands
  • Travel
  • Visit your parents
  • Go to the park with your friends
  • Get pregnant
  • Interact with your family after working in the same building as someone with an unknown respiratory illness
DO: (No criticism of anyone's answers intended; I just think it's amusing. Mostly a sign of how much things have changed in just a couple of weeks.)
posted by Syllepsis at 10:43 AM on March 14 [48 favorites]


If you monitor it via an RSS reader, many of them (i.e. Inoreader) have filters that can remove said articles based on keyword.
posted by WCityMike at 11:48 AM on March 14 [1 favorite]


No, no virus megathreads, please.
posted by Dip Flash at 12:25 PM on March 14 [9 favorites]


Maybe it’s gallows humour, Syllepsis, but your comment gave me one of the few out-loud laughs I’ve had lately.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 1:43 PM on March 14 [11 favorites]


A couple deleted; for personal news and updates about the COVID situation rather than site policy discussion, there's a check-in thread here, so please go ahead and post there! (and really it would be a nice thing to do, since I'm seeing the standing comment count at 666.) 👀
posted by taz (staff) at 6:56 AM on March 15 [2 favorites]


As a first step, I have added to the My Ask preferences the ability to exclude specific tags. So, for instance, one can choose a set of (or all the) categories and then say that they don't want to see the tags "coronavirus covid19 corona virus covid covid-19 quarantine" in order to filter somewhat.
posted by frimble (staff) at 9:58 AM on March 15 [20 favorites]


There's now a banner at the top of the site linking to the FAQ re: Covid-19, and none of the moderators have come forwards to take responsibility for it, so I'm just going to have to go ahead and thank all y'all. Thanks mods, for the hard work and often thankless job you do!
posted by fragmede at 11:52 AM on March 15 [4 favorites]


Heh, yes, sorry, we've been trying to get stuff organized and that's taken a priority over communication about trying to get that stuff done. But it's quite accurate to call it an all-hands effort, mod staff has been burning some brain cells around.
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:13 PM on March 15 [5 favorites]


Thanks Frimble!
And Taz! And Cortex! And ‘All Mods on Deck’!!

The adjustment to MyAsk preferences is a great step that will address this and future
‘ALL CONSUMING TOPICS OF DOOM’....

I’m going to go feed my new pony now!
posted by calgirl at 4:19 PM on March 15 [2 favorites]


Thank you thank you frimble and all mods! You guys are the BEST.
posted by unicorn chaser at 3:27 AM on March 16


Just a general suggestion, outside of tagging a post with covid19 coronavirus virus selfquarantine, etc. If you're making a post to distract from all the covid-related news, consider just making the post and not always framing it around covid.

Like you can post something cute and fun and not have it be: "because things are awful and you're stuck at home, here are some cute dog things", maybe consider just posting cute dog things. Because even though you're not actively posting about covid, you're reminding people who want to not think about that for a few minutes that it exists.
posted by Fizz at 7:59 AM on March 16 [22 favorites]


Also, if what I've said up above resonates, maybe we can consider adding a note to the covid-related FAQ.
posted by Fizz at 8:01 AM on March 16


I've been using MyAsk to filter out anything with the tags Covid-19 and Coronavirus - it would be really helpful if everyone asking questions in any way related could use be sure to use those tags - there are still quite a few showing up. Thanks!
posted by penguin pie at 6:53 AM on March 17 [1 favorite]


Thank you, this is helping my sanity!

And I agree with Fizz
posted by daybeforetheday at 12:01 AM on March 18


What Fizz said. Some posts prioritize the virus stuff at the expense of the actual content.

I don't know how much corona-stuff has been deleted from the front page, but a number of virus posts have been kinda thin over the past week. I know the FAQ suggests making that kind of thing a comment instead, but I'd also support the mods getting a bit more gently aggressive in deleting those and encouraging folks to repost in the latest general coronavirus thread.
posted by mediareport at 10:33 AM on March 19


Yeah, we've been nixing and redirecting on some things. I think it's bound to be relatively thick on the ground for a bit here just because it's the thing happening and it's global, but the thinner stuff or "and here's another bad thing" stuff can in a lot of cases I think go into one of the more active existing threads.

And yeah, Fizz, we like that guidance suggestion a lot and are looking at adding it to the posting page for the time being.
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:40 AM on March 19


I also wonder if there can be an end to questions of, "So there's A THING I really want to do and even though I know there's social distancing and I am not supposed to, is it okay if I do this thing anyway?"
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 7:41 PM on March 19


YISYIWY, that's just a phase. I feel that people get to ask that. Of course, that doesn't mean that you have to read it.
posted by Too-Ticky at 4:52 AM on March 20 [2 favorites]


Fizz, we've got that language up on the new post page on the blue now!
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:16 AM on March 20 [1 favorite]


I think it's probably a good idea to keep those "should I do social thing" posts coming, from a public health standpoint. Because in most cases so far the community has been #staythefuckhome in a way that seems to be getting through to people
posted by aspersioncast at 5:43 PM on March 20 [2 favorites]


I think it's probably a good idea to keep those "should I do social thing" posts coming, from a public health standpoint. Because in most cases so far the community has been #staythefuckhome in a way that seems to be getting through to people

Except they're not. I get that my perspective on this is probably skewed because I'm a critical worker who oversees lots of other critical workers and my life right now is dealing with their panic and the panic of our clients.

Here are some examples:

I have a family eating only rice and refusing our daily food delivery because they're not sure the food containers aren't contaminated;

I have THREE very sick childcare workers who cannot get tested because there are no tests where I live;

I have grocery workers who now can't send their kids to daycare because second home owners and regular city-escapers come to my village by the hundreds every weekend from NYC and NJ and touch everything in the village market and contaminate everything.

So I live in a place where I am literally surrounded by people who think breaking a quarantine is fine because they feel great, and my work now is helping everyone who is affected by their selfishness.

I get that I don't have to read these questions but people are getting answers like sure you'll be fine, have the dogwalker come, give the books away, etc.

AND IT'S NOT FINE.
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes at 8:13 AM on March 22


Kirth, not sure if you got an answer, but what that person was referencing was post categories, as opposed to tags.
posted by WCityMike at 2:48 PM on March 23


Yes, I got that.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:58 PM on March 23


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