User Signup Policy April 2, 2004 9:16 AM   Subscribe

What about tweaking the new user signup method in order to accommodate overseas wannabes? [more inside]
posted by UKnowForKids to MetaFilter-Related at 9:16 AM (52 comments total)

A handful of people have mentioned on this Monkeyfilter thread that, having the cheek to live in non-US time zones, it's extremely unlikely that they'll be able to get in on the signup action. Would it be possible to split up each day's allocation of new accounts into two times? Perhaps 15 spots could open up at 12:00 pm PST, and 5 spots could open up at 12:00 am PST.
posted by UKnowForKids at 9:19 AM on April 2, 2004


You snooze, you lose.

MeFi signups are open, which is really a blue moon sort of event, you know? If you want to get hang out with the cool kids, maybe you set your clock and jump through the hoop just this once. You could also always donate something to Number 1. I hear he often lets people in for a donation...
</snark>
posted by bshort at 9:30 AM on April 2, 2004


I would agree with you, bshort, if being awake and online at the specified time guaranteed membership.
posted by trharlan at 9:38 AM on April 2, 2004


Good point, trharlan.
posted by onlyconnect at 9:41 AM on April 2, 2004


We could do with a lot more foreigners. We'd have fewer US-centric posts, hopefully; and those of us in North America would, hopefully, gain more insight into what's going on in the rest of the world. I think this could only benefit MetaX in the long run.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:47 AM on April 2, 2004


Couldn't they just stay up late instead of getting up early?
posted by milovoo at 10:00 AM on April 2, 2004


Someone did say if I moved the time to 9-10PM pacific, it would accomodate a lot more people, except for EST people in america.

Someone gets screwed no matter what time I pick here, and having two or more time slots with new user signups is overdoing it in my opinion.

There are some new users trickling in, I'll work on making it better eventually.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 10:02 AM on April 2, 2004


trharlan: good point.
posted by bshort at 10:20 AM on April 2, 2004


Why not make it a random time that changes every day? That seems to me to be the fairest method, as it doesn't give any advantage to those saddos* who wait to pounce at 12 noon PST every day until they finally get in. It would add a bit of serendipity to the process.

*I was going to say "i.e. people like me" but I was even sadder and paid for my entrance to the cyberelite.
posted by cbrody at 10:31 AM on April 2, 2004


not only more foreigners, I'd like to have a little affirmative action here, to make the place more interesting: for example a lot more Muslim members, since we're discussing Islam so often.

I mean, we already have the fundy Christian, the Wall Street fundy supply-sider, the various Israel-is-always-right Likudniks/neocons/whatever on MeFi.
where are the fundy Muslims/Arab-country-citizens on MeFi?

there's certainly a place for them here if there's place for...

I think if we quadruple gay marry Saddam, Chalabi, W and Ted Kennedy, everything will be ok.

So a super smart, highly educated arab scientist is the spittoon for the commies? Interesting..... what kind of achievements do you commies actually respect? Since science, math and making money obviously aren't your thing. .....Perhaps you respect excessive french lookingness?"


Name: Bad Commie
member since: April 1, 2004

ah new blood

we need it so much don't we?
posted by matteo at 10:53 AM on April 2, 2004


It would be cool if the window opened at a random time each day – e.g., 4:00amPST today, 9:00pmPST tomorrow, etc. That would give everyone in the world an equal shot.

Would that be very hard to code?
posted by timeistight at 11:25 AM on April 2, 2004


It would be cool if the window opened at a random time each day – e.g., 4:00amPST today, 9:00pmPST tomorrow, etc. That would give everyone in the world an equal shot.
I think that would be really mean to all the people trying to get in--they'd have to keep trying all day and night. At least this Noon pacific/3pm EST/8pm(?) GMT way lets them know when to try, even if they don't get in the first time.
posted by amberglow at 11:32 AM on April 2, 2004


it would accomodate a lot more people, except for EST people in america.

Precisely the sort of riff-raff we want to keep out.

The random signup time idea sounds fairer to me. I still think current-member-sponsored new memberships would be the best idea, but I know I'm in the minority on that one.
posted by Hildago at 11:36 AM on April 2, 2004


Guys, how is Miguel supposed to speak for all of Europe if we let a whole bunch of other Europeans in? At least the other Euros we have now understand and have silently consented to Miguel as their boisterous, misguided, nearly alcoholic ambassador.
posted by The God Complex at 11:58 AM on April 2, 2004


Why random sign up times -- which would have people hitting reload a lot like some dumb radio call in contest.

Why not take the e-mail address of everybody who wants an account, and randomly select a number of those each day?
posted by willnot at 11:59 AM on April 2, 2004


There's also the fact that according to said gregarious ambassador, people outside of "the assimilation zone" ('merika) are usually more left-thinking than those within the confines of the melting coffin. This place might get frenched_and_mutilated if we're not careful.

In all seriousness, I'd be for the 15/5 split, or for holding signups at Euro-centric times for a two or three days stretch.
posted by The God Complex at 12:07 PM on April 2, 2004


I still think current-member-sponsored new memberships would be the best idea

I think we have enough of a like-minded, group-think type of atmosphere here already. No need to create further incestuousness.

I think willnot may have a great idea, though. That way, e-mail authentication is guaranteed and randomness, with all time zones, is likely.
posted by BlueTrain at 12:08 PM on April 2, 2004


random lottery might be the fairest way to do it, but the call-in-contest style ensures that only the biggest dorks get in first (like myself, i've been waiting like 2 years for this).
posted by garethspor at 12:10 PM on April 2, 2004


Why not take the e-mail address of everybody who wants an account, and randomly select a number of those each day?
the lottery idea is excellent!
I also reiterate my pony request: a little affirmative action for foreigners/Muslims. make MeFi more diverse, more interesting and less US/Anglo/JudeoChristian-centric

At least the other Euros we have now understand and have silently consented to Miguel as their boisterous, misguided, nearly alcoholic ambassador.

*shakes fist at Portuguese Diebold machine*
posted by matteo at 12:14 PM on April 2, 2004


Similar to willnot's idea, why not let everyone sign up right now and then incrementally enable posting privilege? Doesn't that amount to the same thing?
posted by Gyan at 12:18 PM on April 2, 2004


Guys, how is Miguel supposed to speak for all of Europe if we let a whole bunch of other Europeans in?

He can damn well learn to put up with representing Iberia and boozers everywhere.
posted by biffa at 12:18 PM on April 2, 2004


I'm not sure how long you're planning to keep signups open, but I thought since I was lucky enough to get one of today's slots I'd lent my two cents. It might be fairer all around to drift the signup time in a predictable manner -- say an hour later every day the signups are open. That way people who have been waiting for the chance to get an account can still plan their day around the signup window, and it will eventually be convenient for everyone.

(also: thank you!)
posted by Jugwine at 12:21 PM on April 2, 2004


Jugwine's sounds like a good suggestion, some balance is perhaps also needed for those who would prefer to sign up from work and those who have the temerity to MeFi from home.

Jugwine: Having said that, it seems terribly bad form to have a record of MeFi 0: MeTa 1.
posted by biffa at 12:57 PM on April 2, 2004


ooh, I like Jugwine's idea. And I gotta say, the fewer new of us ESTers there are, the better.
posted by bshort at 1:00 PM on April 2, 2004


Actually, I'll probably be taking the signups down soon. The mad dash at noon is totally slowing the server down, and I'd much rather have new pepole making great posts than a thousand people arguing with each other in comments.

I'd rather implement my "suggest a new post for an account" thing, but it does require some significant programming and time. They'll be no limit on that and it will be available anytime. In the end we win with great new front page posts and new members.

The other way just stresses commenting over all else, which I don't feel like encouraging (since there are still a rash of shitty news posts to discuss ad naseum).
posted by mathowie (staff) at 1:48 PM on April 2, 2004


I do like the idea of 'content' versus 'lottery' mathowie, though I can only imagine the extra coding.
posted by jazzkat11 at 2:18 PM on April 2, 2004


"...the fewer new of us ESTers there are, the better."

Scratch the "new", and I'm in total agreement.

/MSTbias
posted by mr_crash_davis at 2:20 PM on April 2, 2004


I joined up from Japan and had no problem. Actually, I didn't even realize signups were restricted until I started reading the MetaTalk comments.
posted by Meridian at 2:20 PM on April 2, 2004


I was lucky enough to be in the IRC channel when Matt opened the forum, otherwise I might feel differently. Still, I like Jugwine's idea the most. I was afraid of a content-based selection because I didn't want to have to search frantically for something interesting to contribute. I usually chance upon interesting links to share. It's rarely a result of some laborius meme hunt.
posted by Evstar at 2:50 PM on April 2, 2004


I usually chance upon interesting links to share. It's rarely a result of some laborius meme hunt.

That's perfect then, you'd learn the first rule of posting something to MeFi: don't try to find something, but wait for it to find you.

If Slashdot required it, and I wanted to be a part of slashdot, I'd think "cool, I'll keep that in mind while I surf around for the next couple weeks and see if I stumble upon something post-worthy."
posted by mathowie (staff) at 3:08 PM on April 2, 2004


...The mad dash at noon is totally slowing the server down....

I suggest a different layout to the threads. Your server is under incredible stress from each and every user ANYWAY. Each page demands so much - so many FPPs, posts to serve. User clicks on a link, clicks "back" and the page loads once more. You could cache the front page every 5 minutes so people download a straight HTML file (i.e. it's HTML on the server). Many ways to fix it without causing yourself too much headaches or development time. I'm just suggesting.....I'm guessing your server's CPU is constantly at 80+% all of the time??!
posted by SpaceCadet at 3:13 PM on April 2, 2004


Mooowhahaha. Howzabout let everybody get signups ... but allow thread-posting only at random!

We'd all have a 1/20000 or so chance of getting to post at any given time.

The not-hardcore would give up. The really hardcore would die of the stress. And all us moderates would ... well, not post so much, I suppose, and really make the most of our opportunity to do so.
posted by five fresh fish at 3:33 PM on April 2, 2004


We could do with a lot more foreigners. We'd have fewer US-centric posts, hopefully; and those of us in North America would, hopefully, gain more insight into what's going on in the rest of the world.

I agree.

Name: Bad Commie
member since: April 1, 2004

ah new blood

we need it so much don't we?


Well, at least you have a link to throw into someone's face when the we need new blood whine begins again. After clicking on his blog--where's the betting pool for the day of his first banishment? The veidence suggests that this guy has nothing but noise to contribute. Oh, if only there were a way to vet out and out assholes. Maybe having a waiting period and checking their blogs first if they have them might help--hint, hint.

By the way, have you considered an age limit, Matt? Or intelligence testing?

Actually, the suggest a post for enrollment concept might handle both of those and jerks like him... Never mind.
posted by y2karl at 3:58 PM on April 2, 2004


has it been tweaked to "no longer open"? I was eagerly waiting at 12 today and was able to sneak in. Thanks!
posted by busboy789 at 4:04 PM on April 2, 2004


Yeah, I just took the new signups off.

I need to get the server back in shape so every new user isn't as much of a burden as they are.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 4:09 PM on April 2, 2004


Bad Commie is a bad omen. There are wolves waiting at the door. Wolves who apparently don't actually know what we do here - they just read on some bedroom-general's blog that we're a bunch of raving bleeding-heart commies who need to be taught a lesson.
posted by Jimbob at 4:57 PM on April 2, 2004


Wow, I feel really lucky that I made it in. I've been lurking MeFi for well over a year, and am known on #mefi as kmellis—here I didn't want to be confused with kmel. People occasionally asked me why I hadn't petitioned Matt for a membership (or whatever, because as we know some new members have trickled in); but the truth of the matter is that I do feel a responsibility to be the sort of user that Matt is looking for—someone that posts good links and not, as he says, somone who just “shoots the shit” in the comments. But I don't feel like much of an intrepid web explorer.

At the least, Matt, surely many of us newbies are long-time lurkers who know the ropes and shouldn't require much attention? One can hope.

Thanks for opening up membership again, however briefly, and I'll do my best to be a good member of the community.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 5:33 PM on April 2, 2004


The whole of Europe understands.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 5:38 PM on April 2, 2004


kmellis! A delight to have you here -- one of the best conversations I've had on #mefi was the Monty Hall and philosophy discussion. I'm sure you'll contribute well.
posted by weston at 5:50 PM on April 2, 2004


awww, the commies are terrified, how cute.

Does my mere presence strike fear into your Stalin loving hearts? Do you tremble at the mere mention of my name? Does your dog spontaneously self combust?

Excellent. Everything is going according to plan.

Oh well, it's hard to please a hip euro racist like matteo.

Woof Woof.

Oh, and I'm glad you like my blog so much, Hot Karl. Ahmed Chalabi helped me write it.
posted by Bad Commie at 6:35 PM on April 2, 2004


P.S. You haven't seen banning till you've read this.
posted by Bad Commie at 6:41 PM on April 2, 2004


I was just about to say that, after perusing his little weblog thingy, I was sort of getting a chuckle out of Bad Commie*. Then I came back here, clicked on his last comment, and the S.O.B. turned up my volume.

BAD Commie! Don't mess with my wave settings!

* Except, what's the deal with the knives, dude? Get another hobby.
posted by yhbc at 6:49 PM on April 2, 2004


<Shaking in his boots>
posted by Jimbob at 6:51 PM on April 2, 2004


I only use the "embed" tag so you can play a YMCA mp3 on the side. It does not autostart. You must be using some sort of communist linux computer.
posted by Bad Commie at 6:53 PM on April 2, 2004


hama7 reductio ad absurdum, with a twist of quonsar.

Intriguing.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:26 PM on April 2, 2004


OK, I take that back. It's a fine line between intriguing and just plain annoying.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:17 PM on April 2, 2004


Watch out! Bad Commie is f&m getting in touch with his feminine side!
posted by Ptrin at 8:30 PM on April 2, 2004


well, I don't remember foldy self-linking like Bad Commie did, not even once
posted by matteo at 4:53 AM on April 3, 2004


How cute, someone's stuck in the 50s.
posted by GrahamVM at 6:40 AM on April 3, 2004


Gee. The last guy who worked this hard at getting kicked out was a lot more entertaining... and he was hardly entertaining at all.
posted by taz at 6:48 AM on April 3, 2004


*sings*

are you minya in disguise ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 7:18 AM on April 3, 2004


Oh, no... sarge; that other guy - with some kind of "I'm-a-redneck-right-winger" name; I can't remember, though.
posted by taz at 8:06 AM on April 3, 2004


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