Replacement for February 7, 2022 12:00 AM   Subscribe

I'm saddened by the demise of MeFi is a great way to discover longform articles, but I miss Longform's RSS feed, which was clean and concise. I'm wondering if there's some way to implement a current-longform-journalism-focused feed, or a reliable tagging mechanism that is hyper-focused on only current longform journalism. Apologies if this has been covered already. I couldn't find anything. Thanks!
posted by al_fresco to Feature Requests at 12:00 AM (13 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

I don't know much about, but will just say as far as this goes: tagging mechanism that is hyper-focused on only current longform journalism, that's actually easy-(ish) as long as people agree on a tag ... like let's say "longformread" or similar. When you click on a tag, you're going to see everything with that tag, beginning with the most recent, so that covers "current." Getting people to think about using it is the greater stumbling block, but like anything else, that comes with it actually happening. If a certain number of people start consistently using it, others will pick up on it. Mods and, I think, mutual contacts, can add tags to posts, so that could help to get it more out there. If people find the idea of doing this good and agree on a useful tag, leaving a comment (and flagging that comment) that says something like "could we get a longformread (or whatever) tag on this," would be okay, I think.

So, not a "mechanism" in terms of some feature that automatically recognizes that something is non fiction, an article, and "long form" and throws in a tag (because what kind of AI witchery is that? Get thee behind me, Eliza!), but one method that might provide some helpful results. There would be no index by topic, however. But you could still search via tags. Something like " music" would bring up all posts tagged with both "lonformread" and "music," for example. Again, this depends on people tagging well, soooo. Comme ci, comme ça.

Other people might have better ideas for your longform yearnings!
posted by taz (staff) at 2:26 AM on February 7, 2022 [5 favorites]

Doesn't cover everything you're looking for here by any means, but you may be interested in Evgeny Morozov's project The Syllabus, if you're not already aware of it. Curates long and short form articles, books, podcasts, and videos on a few different subjects, with a good balance of academic and journalistic sources.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 11:07 AM on February 7, 2022 [4 favorites]

MeFites tend to tag by subject rather than form, but that said, the tags longform and essay are reasonably popular. I think encouraging posters to add those tags would be a good thing, as tags have inbuilt RSS feeds already.

I realize that these aren’t as hyperfocused as, but that’s always going to be the case with a community making the posts.
posted by Kattullus at 1:21 PM on February 7, 2022 [2 favorites]

Thanks, @taz. That actually works great. I can subscribe to the RSS feed for the tag. Yeah, now how to choose a tag and get the word out?

Thanks, @Lentrohamsanin. I'll check it out!
posted by al_fresco at 1:23 PM on February 7, 2022 [1 favorite]

Man, I'm still going to a couple times a day, and then I remember "oh yeah, they're gone". I really, really like longform journalism and I loved reading something on LF and then finding it pop up on MeFi for discussion.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 1:29 PM on February 7, 2022 [2 favorites]

I agree with Kattullus. Probably "longform" would be the way to go, as opposed to something harder to remember, like my "longformread" example. "Longform" would snag longer reads (from those who use the tag) and also articles about longer reads (and about, which people would probably like to see, too.

The way to get it out there is just ... the more people use it, the more people will use it. We can make a sidebar post about this thread, but after that it's just adding the tag to your stuff, asking us to add the tag to other things you notice, mentioning it where appropriate, engaging your fellow members who seem to enjoy / post longform stuff, etc.
posted by taz (staff) at 1:49 PM on February 7, 2022 [3 favorites] offers a weekly top 5 email as well as daily posts and

posted by Jesse the K at 1:54 PM on February 7, 2022 [7 favorites]

Yep, if you use the contact form you can ask us to add "longform" tags to posts. Sometimes people will flag-with-note and say, "needs XXX tag." (or advise us of a misspelled tag or something else) Totally normal thing to ask us, takes 2 seconds on our end!
posted by Eyebrows McGee (staff) at 3:10 PM on February 7, 2022 [4 favorites]

Wikipedia recommends longreads and the below sites in the genre.
posted by lalochezia at 4:38 PM on February 7, 2022

FWIW, the tag [longform] doesn’t make the Top 150 tag cloud right now, but likely would if folks started using it.
posted by al_fresco at 8:46 PM on February 7, 2022

I, too, was upset to see Longform disappear. I suspect part of the problem is there is less of it than there used to be. That said, I've noticed several sites can be searched for the longform they produce. Two that come to mind is the Washingtonian's Longform Reads and Buzzfeed's.
posted by Violet Blue at 2:50 PM on February 10, 2022

The Guardian's 'Long Read' is worth adding to the list.
posted by reynir at 1:26 AM on February 12, 2022

Arts and Letters Daily is a great place to find interesting long articles originating in or adjacent to academia. It doesn't overlap with a lot of what Longform used to do, but it scratches the same itch.
posted by Scarf Joint at 6:02 PM on February 14, 2022

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