can we find double posts in comments? October 27, 2002 12:10 PM   Subscribe

New member; first post; searched and searched; usual story. Then this comment, by furiousthought, pointing to the fact that my link had already been posted in a thread (albeit, in my defense, long before I joined and cryptically referenced). So I wonder whether the automatic URL search facility which exists when you preview a front page post could possibly be extended to include URLS mentioned in comments? At the very least, we could thank the first users to link to it. Nobody has the time to read all the threads or click on all the links in comments and searches, whether MetaFilter or Google, often fail to point to cryptically described links.

Forgive me if this is impossible to achieve, stupid or has been asked before, of course!
posted by Carlos Quevedo to Feature Requests at 12:10 PM (15 comments total)

i too thought it was a double, and had a hard time beleiving it wasn't. i'd seen the thing like, everywhere, last week - one of those "blog staples" one keeps bumping into. but i wander incessantly in the blogfields, and many mefites do not. and then, just because something is on several blogs, doesn't mean anybody on the planet but me actually READS those blogs! funny how, when something seems familiar, i always think i saw it here first... thanks for the post, no need to apologize (an annoying characteristic of all newbies which can be laid at the feet of our relentless meficops) and i'm sure furiousthought was just furiously trying to sort out where he had seen it if not here, and i still say this is the best way to deal with telemarketers!
posted by quonsar at 1:15 PM on October 27, 2002

Ditto Quonsar.

I was wondering where I had seen it before. It was somewhere, but could not remember exactly. However, it was befitting of a post so I did not go searching around. I figured if the Double-Post-Patrol had not called it out in the first 2 comments, it was fine.

I wouldn't worry about it. I think we are going to see alot more of this in the future, if not right now.

posted by lampshade at 1:32 PM on October 27, 2002

Hey, thanks, quonsar! I mean, I did try to make two posts before that one but, when I got to preview, MeFi informed me the links had been posted before (like a good Argentinian and porteƱo I rely exclusively on e-mail and newspapers for my sources).

What I was asking was whether the same information couldn't be displayed about comments (by tracing all the URLs in MetaFilter or -Talk, or everything beginning by that classic "http://" opening line) so that, when someone tried to post, they would get the message, for instance:

"The URL you have posted has never been featured before in a front page post, but it has figured in the following comment(s). Perhaps you might like to reference or acknowledge it or, God forbid, grab another link!" :)
posted by Carlos Quevedo at 1:38 PM on October 27, 2002

Posting something on the front page that's appeared in a comment isn't something that's especially frowned on around here, at least not that I'm aware of. In fact sometimes people will specifically request that someone do so. So nothing to worry about really, no harm, no foul, okay? I just mentioned it because Hildago brought it up.

(What you suggest might be a nice feature though...)
posted by furiousthought at 2:09 PM on October 27, 2002

albeit, in my defense, long before I joined and cryptically referenced

long before you joined? That thread was like two days ago!
posted by mdn at 2:46 PM on October 27, 2002

Did I say long before? I meant, of course, long after.

No, joking apart, what I am proposing modestly is a system (apart from the Metatalk hassle) that would allow users, whether or not they are habitual readers (mostly because they din't have the time) to learn of links that have been posted before.

So, for instance, when I made ny first post, there would be a reply from the posting box saying "so-and-so" (in this case, furiousthought, to whom many thanks for the fair play!) has already posted this.

I'm sure even veteran, perfect, old-time posters (like mdn, so polite to newcomers) would perhaps benefit from this feature.
posted by Carlos Quevedo at 2:56 PM on October 27, 2002

I suppose that I am like quonsar, in that I read many blogs online. This link has been posted on every site that I have gone to lately. I agree that a way should be provided to search links within comments, however, I think that a poster should also search the web a bit to see how much coverage a certain topic has received. In this case, I think that this topic received excessive coverage and I was hoping it would die down without every making it to mefi. I was disappointed twice over it would seem.

posted by Raichle at 4:03 PM on October 27, 2002

An addition to previous thought. I read mefi long before I became a member and I would suggest that new members read older posts in order to get a feel for what has been discussed before. At least, the previous couple days.

posted by Raichle at 4:05 PM on October 27, 2002

I don't think it should be a requirement that every MeFi user is expected to read every single post, scour every single comment, and click every single link. Double posts happen, there's no need to get anal about it. Personally, I'm glad Carlos posted this because I hadn't seen it before, on MeFi or anywhere else, and I found it amusing. I'm sure dozens of other folks did too, so no big loss, right?

posted by Jimbob at 8:33 PM on October 27, 2002

A post with a link that was used in a previous comment is not a double post.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:01 PM on October 27, 2002

So have we figured out how many angels can dance on the head of a pin yet?

(feelin' snarky this morning.)
posted by konolia at 3:36 AM on October 28, 2002

as many as you want, as long as none of them has previously danced on the same pinhead.
posted by quonsar at 8:09 AM on October 28, 2002

A simple search for "telemarketers" in the last year of MeFi produced seven results, several of which should have given rise to a suspicion that the theme had had a lot of coverage and that the proposed link might be found in one of them (as in fact it was). It's true it wasn't a double post, but it wouldn't have required reading every single post and scouring every single comment in the history of MeFi to find the earlier link.
posted by languagehat at 12:37 PM on October 28, 2002

October 21st.
This was posted already by someone and deleted, I guess, because the thread about telemarketing was still a happening thing. So, technically, *screams* DOUBLE POST!!!!
(Just playing with ya)

posted by Catch at 12:38 PM on October 28, 2002

It is worth noting that not everybody reads every link posted in every thread here, so the occasional repetitive post is not a bad thing. I enjoyed the FPP (in fact found it from this MeTa thread), had not seen it before, and look forward to using it in the future if my place on the state no-call list is lost, so it is a worthwhile post as far as I am concerned. Also, it seemed to me that furiousthought was just making an observation, not criticizing.
posted by TedW at 6:27 PM on October 28, 2002

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