Meta information feature April 24, 2001 9:56 AM   Subscribe

I'd like to request a feature in which meta-information about links (e.g. source, medium, etc.) can be placed in a text field during a post. I've tried various schemes for highlighting this metainformation (different colors, italics, etc.) but 1) I frequently get flamed for it, and 2) It's taken down as it is deemed inappropriate. In my estimate, displaying metainformation in a different color is useful, because it allows the reader to filter out links he or she might not be able to/want to access. (e.g., lately, RealPlayer).

In addition, I've really been flamed about dated links. I know that metafilter is about things new and cool, but new is a relative term in different contexts. Can anyone suggest a paradigm in which I don't anger mefi'ers with such posts? Or is this more of a feature-driven concept? Or should I just tell these guys to piss off? ;)

posted by SilentSalamander to Feature Requests at 9:56 AM (12 comments total)

Oh, and tell them to piss off, IMHO.
posted by fooljay at 10:35 AM on April 24, 2001

I hate colored fonts being used on the front page. There are a few reasons for this. The whole point is to give additional info that people can ignore, but any color applied to text makes it scream out. There are so few colors that look good on the blue background.

I've held off on asking people to create meta info because it was just more work. I liked that the posting interface was somewhat simple: link, link description, post description. I thought adding "link title tag" or "RSS feed summary" was too much to ask. Adding "source:" would only encourage people to poach stuff off other sources (I kind of prefer orginal links).

As for the new/old stuff, I don't know what to suggest. Yesterday there was a link to the fatboy slim video with chris walken dancing in it. I saw that a month ago on every weblog imaginable. It was certainly metafilter material, but it was a few weeks late. But there's nothing I can do, make people search all blogs?

So there's no easy solution to any of this.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 10:57 AM on April 24, 2001

It's really quite easy to make text recede into the background if that's your goal. It's just a matter of picking a color that's a lighter version of the background color. Not purple, not black, but a lighter blue or gray.
posted by kindall at 11:28 AM on April 24, 2001

Yesterday there was a link to the fatboy slim video with chris walken dancing in it. I saw that a month ago on every weblog imaginable. It was certainly metafilter material, but it was a few weeks late.

I never saw it. But I can't keep up with all these trends the kids always follow. Why, in my day, videos were cool and humor was funny... Whatever happened to those days?
posted by daveadams at 3:02 PM on April 24, 2001

Whatever happened to those days?

They weren't very marketable. It turns out that T & A sells more albums. Who knew?
posted by mathowie (staff) at 3:06 PM on April 24, 2001

SilentSal: I appreciate your trying to do this, in case nobody else has said that. I don't understand why people would flame you over this. Most people posting links are trying to contribute something. Even if it's old, it's possible to be kind about letting them know.

As for metadata, I would suggest the low-tech method: parentheses. TITLE would also be good. But you can't do it using the standard machinery in thread-starter posts. Or can you? Would this work:

(in the URL field)" TITLE="Visit Foo!

On posting, that gets quotes wrapped around it, right? Would that break something?
posted by rodii at 6:19 PM on April 24, 2001

I skip the url field and type everything in the comments box if I'm planning to use TITLE, so I don't know if it works in the url field. Mathowie?

If someone's linking to a RealAudio file or anything else needing a plug-in, I really don't mind (actually I prefer) having a warning in parentheses, like rodii said.
posted by lia at 10:52 PM on April 24, 2001

title tags break in the URL field
posted by mathowie (staff) at 4:09 PM on April 25, 2001

An extraneous comments field with limited entry space that translates to a title atribute would be pretty straight forward. That way, people can put whatever seems appropriate in their, and people who could care less won't bother with pausing long enough on the link to pull up the title text.
posted by silusGROK at 3:26 PM on April 26, 2001

title="" doesn't work in Netscape 4-
posted by normy at 8:02 AM on April 27, 2001

Normy: Upgrade.
posted by silusGROK at 9:04 AM on April 27, 2001

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