Calling Out Hama7 August 3, 2004 5:38 PM   Subscribe


first the universities, and now metafilter?! you guys can't catch a break, huh!
posted by mcsweetie at 5:43 PM on August 3, 2004


that is so pre-8/1.
posted by quonsar at 5:43 PM on August 3, 2004


you don't really get it, do you?
I'm sorry I was nasty to you in the past, Steve. I thought it was bad faith on your part. it wasn't/isn't. you just don't get it. it flies above your head.
again, I'm sorry.

but yeah, I agree, Haughey's liberal bias is bad for MeFi right-wingers, definitely. Lib'rul media, lib'rul Haughey.

happy now Stevie?
:)
posted by matteo at 5:44 PM on August 3, 2004


Good of you to point this out, Steve.

I agree that hama7's post should be deleted. But by that token, so should many others including the ones that Steve highlighted. I try really hard to believe that Matt wants to be objective and encourage a wide array of viewpoints. But this is one more nail in the coffin.

Clearly about 90% of Postroad's FPP's should be deleted (if not more). And by the standards used to delete Hama's many, many other FPPs should be deleted, as well. But for some reason, this one is picked out for deletion. Hell, Matt even responded to the thread before he deleted it.

So, I am left to ponder with so many trollish axe-grinding posts, why did Matt only delete hama7's? Guess we shouldn't even pretend anymore that this website is destined to be anything other than an echo chamber?
posted by Seth at 5:45 PM on August 3, 2004


Steve, c'mon, this wasn't a reasoned argument in favor of giving religious faith it's due in a civil society, this was hama hoping to divide rather than unite, which I've concluded is his only mission here.
posted by jonmc at 5:46 PM on August 3, 2004


quonsar: on 8/1, everything changed. We will nevar forget. In this post-8/1 world, can Metafiltarians ever feel truly safe again?
posted by reklaw at 5:50 PM on August 3, 2004


But this is one more nail in the coffin.

Are you dead yet?
posted by WolfDaddy at 5:54 PM on August 3, 2004


I think there's one important criterion to use in these posts, left or right--does the poster engage in any kind of substantive debate in the thread that follows?

hama's got a long history of posting stuff to just poke the bear, and then apparently just sits back and smirks at how he can get the lefties up in a lather so easily. (This is from a fellow classicist who genuinely enjoys his posts focused on mythology, art, etc.)

The lefties are just as guilty at times, I think, and it's just as smug and annoying coming from them. No matter who's throwing out the bait, though, I think there's a pretty straightforward criterion--if the person who put the post up joins in a genuine discussion with the criticism that follows, then it's pretty legit. Honestly, I think there should almost be an automatic filter: if you post a political FPP (which you would determine through some magic algorithm), and more than 20 comments go by without any response from you...boink! Troll.
posted by LairBob at 6:18 PM on August 3, 2004


I get to be "toss a turd" -- I win. : >

Is your point that our posts were just like hama's? You're wrong. Let's see: mine was a followup on someone i've posted about before, and something that is still an unaddressed national security problem. y2k's was another followup on what's probably the most shameful and horrendous behavior of Americans in recent times, one that also has wide and lasting implications worldwide. postroad's was about a former vip in the military speaking out on foreign policy and the administration.

hama's was an ancient link from Wildmon's group of fundamentalists (... The governor signed the bill into law, and it becomes effective July 1, 2001.), and a link about how those words got on money in the first place.
posted by amberglow at 6:19 PM on August 3, 2004


Dude, I delete more of Postroad's posts than get through these days, and I agree a lot of single news post links suck.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 6:20 PM on August 3, 2004


The lefties are just as guilty at times, I think, and it's just as smug and annoying coming from them.

Everybody's capable of it, LairBob. I think you've hit the nail on the head by using the word "smugness." Because that's probably the most unattractive, enraging trait a human being can have in my opinion . I have more respect for someone I disagree with who's willing to liten to everyone and admit that he dosen't know everything than someone who I agree with who's sure tht he's got it all figured out.

Sadly, smugness is a negative trait that's come to be associated with liberalism (rightly or wrongly) and if we want to reach more people (which is crucial IMO) we gotta ditch that shit and show respect at least for the honest emotions of those who might see things differently.
posted by jonmc at 6:25 PM on August 3, 2004


*sticks dick in the mashed potatoes*
posted by monju_bosatsu at 6:41 PM on August 3, 2004


as much as i disagreed with hama7 and his viewpoint in posting this, i don't think it should have been deleted ... if someone had posted these links with a disparaging comment about how the fundies were taking over our schools, you guys would have fallen all over yourselves fawning on it and it wouldn't have been deleted ... but let a conservative post it ... with no commentary at all ... and it becomes a "troll" ... only because you disagree with it

sorry, but you've shown your bias today, matt and i don't care for it even if my views are opposite of hama7's
posted by pyramid termite at 6:49 PM on August 3, 2004


you guys would have fallen all over yourselves fawning on it and it wouldn't have been deleted

who is "you guys?"
posted by mcsweetie at 7:00 PM on August 3, 2004


i think it would have been brought here for being such an old link, had it not been deleted.
posted by amberglow at 7:02 PM on August 3, 2004


sorry, but you've shown your bias today, matt and i don't care for it even if my views are opposite of hama7's

I deleted it because there's nothing to discuss, and it'll just erupt in arguments between pro religion and anti religion folks. I've exchanged email with hama7 recently where he regretted a lot of politically charged posts, asked me to delete them, then said he'd stick to the art posts.

This post goes against that and I saw the same pointless shouting past each other I expected, so I axed it.

Posting a link to the history of a controversial phrase plus a press release from a politically charged fringe group without explanation or commentary is lobbing a turd into the middle of the pool. There are examples of this happening with lefty posts, and I delete those when I spot them as well. I don't read every single post posted to mefi, so a few get through on both sides, but I saw this today and knew it would be nothing but unproductive.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 7:02 PM on August 3, 2004


Steve, the post fucking sucked. Get over it.
posted by bshort at 7:10 PM on August 3, 2004


First the universities, and now metafilter?! you guys can't catch a break, huh!
posted by mcsweetie at 5:43 PM PST on August 3


Georgetown brainwashed me.

But why?
posted by the fire you left me at 7:11 PM on August 3, 2004


On a tangent, the 8/1 "joke" isn't all that funny. I make fun of disasters all the time, 9/11 not excluded, but this new in-joke is pretty lame. I get the joke, but it just isn't that funny. If someone does make a 9/11 joke it needs to be really, really, fucking funny - otherwise it just makes people look bad. I won't complain about it again, this is just some feedback.
posted by elwoodwiles at 7:18 PM on August 3, 2004


On a tangent, the 8/1 "joke" isn't all that funny. I make fun of disasters all the time, 9/11 not excluded, but this new in-joke is pretty lame.

It's not really a joke about 9/11 though, is it? It's a joke about the pompous and opportunistic ways some people invoke 9/11 I thought.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 7:22 PM on August 3, 2004


matt ... all i can say is that this site would be a lot thinner looking if every post was judged by the pointlessness of the discussions ... there aren't many religious orientated posts that don't degenerate into the kind of discussion you're describing ... it's one of those perpetual unsolved arguments ... like the current election
posted by pyramid termite at 7:27 PM on August 3, 2004


Damn Mathowie that was fast. I didn't think it (34754) was fanning any flames, I thought it was calling for fairly rational discourse. Sorry.
posted by tetsuo at 7:36 PM on August 3, 2004


tetsuo, it was on ok post, but I don't want to drag the same pro and anti religion discussion into a new thread.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 7:39 PM on August 3, 2004


Seems a bit strange that you left a comment with more links before you deleted the post. Was it deleted for what the discussion turned into, rather than for the original link?
posted by reklaw at 7:44 PM on August 3, 2004


Matt didn't delete the thread. Ed Helms did.
posted by crunchland at 7:49 PM on August 3, 2004


Metafilter: so I axed it.

Yay!
posted by adampsyche at 7:51 PM on August 3, 2004


I've exchanged email with hama7 recently where he regretted a lot of politically charged posts, asked me to delete them, then said he'd stick to the art posts.

Posts, or comments? Or both? 'cause dollars to donuts, there's no way in hell he's gonna stop with the trolltastic comments. And until recently, they were the only problem.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:00 PM on August 3, 2004


well why don't you cry about it!
posted by ac at 9:09 PM on August 3, 2004


*cries*
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:15 PM on August 3, 2004


*cries about it*
posted by dhoyt at 9:15 PM on August 3, 2004


I would gleefully yell "jinx" if our joke was not so lame :(
posted by dhoyt at 9:17 PM on August 3, 2004


I would gleefully yell "jinx" if our joke was not so lame :(

In a pre 8/1 world it would have been funnier.

*disappear into a vacuum*

PS - my spell checker in metatalk still doesn't work. *joins the chorus of tears*
posted by The God Complex at 9:21 PM on August 3, 2004


Does Firefox make an extension that converts boorish political opinions into jpegs of adorable puppies?
posted by dhoyt at 9:37 PM on August 3, 2004


Dude, get your dick out of my mash potatoes!
posted by ook at 9:46 PM on August 3, 2004


Seems there is no light in August. And irony is deader than disco.
posted by chicobangs at 9:46 PM on August 3, 2004




Karl wins.
posted by Space Coyote at 10:01 PM on August 3, 2004


The invocation of post-apocalyptic tropes to de-reify the "troll" vs. "Devil's Advocate" tensegrity, the dynamic tension between discussion and discursion, smacks of a surreptitious attempt to transpose the emergent communal dislike of "NewsFilter" to an easily dispatched straw man of political "NooseFilter". This lynch mob must themselves be strung up by the chain of their own implied linkages before they can burn down the General Store of Metaphor, else what's MeTa for?
posted by freebird at 10:11 PM on August 3, 2004


He shoots, he scores! And the crowd goes wild. . .
posted by Quartermass at 10:11 PM on August 3, 2004


freebird wins the "who can make Quartermass's brain hurt the most" contest.
posted by Quartermass at 10:13 PM on August 3, 2004


Wow. For once, I agree with Steve_at_Linnwood.
posted by scarabic at 10:21 PM on August 3, 2004


*holds lighter in air, catches Jersey girls hair on fire and wonders what happened to Bon Jovi**

FREEBIRD!!!!!
posted by cedar at 10:25 PM on August 3, 2004


Karl wins?

I didn't know this was a competition.

And Karl, the point still stands... those posts were not deleted.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 10:45 PM on August 3, 2004


It's a joke about the pompous and opportunistic ways some people invoke 9/11 I thought.

If I used it, it'd be about the self-importance of MetaFilter users. That we think this place is so important that having it defaced for six hours is worth an endless hullabaloo of shock and disapproval. That this place, built from our own chatter is so important that having it defaced is shocking.

"8/11" mocks the idea that this particular edifice is an institution.

The reality is that MetaFilter and all who use it could disappear from the face of the earth instantaneously, and it wouldn't matter at all in the long run. Life goes on and it likely wouldn't miss us.

Haha.

?
posted by five fresh fish at 12:11 AM on August 4, 2004


I don't know why everybody accuses hama7 of being a troll. MeFi certainly has trolls. This is clearly a troll, and I wish people would stop feeding it.

With hama7 though, I get the feeling that most of the time he believes what he says. He seems to enjoy debate and discussion about political topics, but that's really, really far away from being trollish behavior.

Guys, just because somebody takes a position that you don't support, that doesn't make them a troll, and tossing that label out is really kind of discourteous and dismissive.

Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe he doesn't believe it, and he's just stirring up shit, but that isn't what it looks like to me.
posted by willnot at 12:16 AM on August 4, 2004


What willnot said.
posted by homunculus at 12:36 AM on August 4, 2004


storm in a tea-cup waddya think, but I do not think the post merited deletion.

*goes back to sandpit*
posted by johnnyboy at 2:48 AM on August 4, 2004


S@L, willnot, homunculus, et al: of course he knows he's stirring up shit -
"I've exchanged email with hama7 recently where he regretted a lot of politically charged posts, asked me to delete them, then said he'd stick to the art posts. "
He lied to Matt. He lied to Matt! How much more trollish can ya get?
posted by dash_slot- at 3:03 AM on August 4, 2004


It was a bad post, but not a trollish post. It was bad because...well..what was the point, exactly? It wasn't even political, was it? Yes, we know all these places mention god in their constitution. Fantastic. Just shows you how long ago they were written - it all seems kind of quaint, really.

Hey fellas, look at this list of different fruits that contain anti-oxidants!

Hey fellas, look at this list of cars with split-fold rear seats!
posted by Jimbob at 5:38 AM on August 4, 2004


Hey fellas, look at this guy with a huge asshole!
posted by mischief at 6:09 AM on August 4, 2004


Wow! I bet he could fit a whole bucket of cocks in there!
posted by mr.marx at 6:22 AM on August 4, 2004


without explanation or commentary

In other words nearly all of hama7's posts.
posted by terrapin at 6:54 AM on August 4, 2004


I deleted it because there's nothing to discuss

Hmmm, looks like the OTHER mathowie thought there was.

Perhaps login got your password :>
posted by page404 at 7:01 AM on August 4, 2004


it was on ok post, but I don't want to drag the same pro and anti religion discussion into a new thread

Huh? So are posts judged for their content, for the comments that people other than the poster make in the thread, or for the comments that you assume in advance that some people might make? Are you really saying that the best post in the world will be deleted because a couple of asshats come in and poop in the thread?
posted by rushmc at 7:18 AM on August 4, 2004


I'm still confused as to why:

* mathowie commented in a thread he thought was useless, conversation-wise

* Why he didn't delete his own post about "July Surprise"
posted by dhoyt at 7:22 AM on August 4, 2004


And why:

* deleting preachy, divisive posts doesn't occur daily. If it does, there sure do seem to be a lot that pass through the filter.
posted by dhoyt at 7:32 AM on August 4, 2004


ask metafilter!
posted by quonsar at 7:44 AM on August 4, 2004


Day by day, bit by bit, the mighty pedestal that we've put Mathowie on is being chipped away.
posted by crunchland at 8:17 AM on August 4, 2004


indeed! I can't believe he deleted a bad post. in fact, I'm quitting the site!
posted by mcsweetie at 8:23 AM on August 4, 2004


* mathowie commented in a thread he thought was useless, conversation-wise

I thought it was a worthwhile addition, to counter the family research council link and provide some background on the constitution. Then a bunch of comments came in saying delete it, from both sides, and the comments were just the same arguing of issues and mocking religious folks.

* Why he didn't delete his own post about "July Surprise"

It's the suckiest post I've ever made, and I thought deleting it would be an attempt at whitewashing the truth, especially since I'm the only one that can remove stuff. I want everyone to know from time to time I can toss a turd just like anyone else, I don't want to try and hide my mistakes.

* deleting preachy, divisive posts doesn't occur daily. If it does, there sure do seem to be a lot that pass through the filter.

This already does happen. I would guess I ax 4-5 preachy posts a week. I let a lot of posts that suck but are borderline stand. If I deleted everything I thought kinda sucked, metatalk would be filled with even more arguments about whether I did the right thing or not, so I try to stick to the worst offenders.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 8:46 AM on August 4, 2004 [1 favorite]


I thought it was a worthwhile addition, to counter the family research council link and provide some background on the constitution.

It should be obvious that I spent a lot of time and effort on that post, and if I hadn't considered it a "worthwhile addition" I would not have posted it. I made it a few days ago and was meant to "counter" nothing. I see informative discussion and very little "shouting" in the comments, and indeed far less than many other posts.

I think the post's deletion was disappointing, and a very bad idea.
posted by hama7 at 9:00 AM on August 4, 2004


to counter the family research council link

I misunderstood.

I'm a little upset.
posted by hama7 at 9:02 AM on August 4, 2004


Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe he doesn't believe it, and he's just stirring up shit, but that isn't what it looks like to me.
posted by willnot at 12:16 AM PST on August 4


You're wrong.

It should be obvious that I spent a lot of time and effort on that post

posted by hama7 at 9:02 AM PST on August 4


No, wait. You're wrong.
posted by swift at 9:05 AM on August 4, 2004


As the panopticon turns, we are forced to wonder who is at the center, the watcher, and who is in the cells, the watched? Here we we see the wonderful "spectacle" of the moderater moderated, and are forced to face the fact that On The Internet, No One Knows You're The Overseer. Including, perhaps, yourself.

When a society is "self-policing", who is the outlaw: do we all take turns as good cop/bad cop? Do we all get to be John Wayne and James Dean both? Or are we all John Trudell and Queen Boadicea, running across a burning wasteland of thwarted discourse, chased by roads, barbed wire, and imperial stormtroopers Of Our Own Devising?

I think these are really the important questions to be asking here, not this who-posted-what, he-did-it-too pool splashing and finger waving. "Fie" on the finger waving, I say - "Fie!"
posted by freebird at 9:49 AM on August 4, 2004


Freebird just spilled his seed all over MetaTalk.
posted by dhoyt at 10:01 AM on August 4, 2004


Holy crap, you mean MetaTalk *isn't* that kind of party?
**looks around with panicked expression**
**wipes off hand on dhoyt, bolts for door**
posted by freebird at 10:06 AM on August 4, 2004


Which means that in about nine months we can be expecting an adorable little bundle of FreeTalk or MetaBird?
posted by taz at 10:14 AM on August 4, 2004


"Day by day, bit by bit, the mighty pedestal that we've put Mathowie on is being chipped away."

With 35,000 front page posts, I think Matt's pedestal will withstand any amount of chipping. Indeed, I would lobby you that Matt's pedestal is rock hard.

He has a day job BTW. And MeFi's bias and chaotic nature have been discussed to the point that it disgusts and nauseates yourself and others. Right?
posted by y6y6y6 at 10:17 AM on August 4, 2004


MetaBird: it disgusts and nauseates!
posted by freebird at 10:22 AM on August 4, 2004


Metafilter: Matt's pedestal is rock-hard.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 10:30 AM on August 4, 2004


I've come to a whole new appreciation of how good a moderator Mathowie is recently, because I've had an experience with a bad moderator?

I won't name the site, but although I enjoyed the place (it's a fun, featherlight-weight, gossipy place) the moderator is such an ass that she really ruins the experience.

She edits people's comments, which I think is over the line. Delete if you like, but don't mess around with someone else's voice. She usually only contributes to a thread to make some command - "This is not a thread about X. Stay on topic." or, "Yeah. As has been posted already in the thread, which you'd see if you'd read the whole thing." When one is cruising through a fun thread, her comments are so jarring.

She hardly ever uses the word please. People can get banned for not using italic and bold tags properly (interestingly, she doesn't seem to fix all her own tagging errors). People get banned for any criticism of the moderators. She closes threads and/or bans people for getting off topic. In the site FAQ/policies section, her little expositions read like that grade school teacher you hated lecturing a bunch of children over whom she relishes her control - "don't email me about your warnings for any reason, not to ask questions about it, not to whine about it, not even to aplogize for it.."

And then she starts a thread called, "Give the ____ writers love." (She writes part of the content for the site as well as moderating the forum.) I sat there open-mouthed staring at the screen, and thought, "You ban people for arguing with you and you start a thread asking for praise?" How Stalinesque.

Is it a clean, tight forum? Yes. Is it worth tolerating her attitude for the sake of having a clean, tight site? Well, plenty of people seem to be posting happily away, so I guess they find it so, but I find I'm not going there much now. I prefer the slight messiness of Metafilter to being yelled at to clean it up and told not to talk back. And I find that sometimes, good, serendipitous things come out of that messiness, in a way they don't in a more sterile environment.
posted by orange swan at 10:32 AM on August 4, 2004


sounds like twop or whedonesque. both highly irritating sites due to their heavy handed style of anal over-moderation. matt's style is the better way to go.
posted by t r a c y at 10:47 AM on August 4, 2004


orange swan, I e-mailed you my guess.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 10:55 AM on August 4, 2004


Indeed, I would lobby you that Matt's pedestal is rock hard.

Wouldn't that make Matt's pedestal a herm?

Mmmmmm....herms.....
posted by WolfDaddy at 10:59 AM on August 4, 2004


She usually only contributes to a thread to make some command - "This is not a thread about X. Stay on topic." or, "Yeah. As has been posted already in the thread, which you'd see if you'd read the whole thing." When one is cruising through a fun thread, her comments are so jarring.

Yep, orange swan, that sounds very familiar. And they also ban the use of "Um." Because it might sound snotty.
posted by transona5 at 11:33 AM on August 4, 2004


I'm a little upset.

Ach, ye! Off ye go, lad, twas a fine performance. See you back in the boot room. The nurse'll give ye a fair rub down an' that'll be that.
posted by octobersurprise at 11:57 AM on August 4, 2004


they also ban the use of "Um." Because it might sound snotty.

that's both fametracker & twop. many other forums have similar insane rules. a lot of people have no idea how good they have it here at mefi.
posted by t r a c y at 12:00 PM on August 4, 2004


Um, transona5, and t r a c y, you're right! 'Twas Fametracker. I am so banned over there, but it was so worth it.

Ooh, it felt so good to use the word "um" that I want to um, keep doing it. And do you know why I can use that word here? Because Matt treats us like adults!

I'm getting the urge to knit a cosy for Matt's pedestal. In blue, green and brown stripes.
posted by orange swan at 12:06 PM on August 4, 2004


Or maybe just in orange.
posted by orange swan at 12:11 PM on August 4, 2004


Or maybe just in orange.

heh! check your email - the acct listed on your profile page.
posted by t r a c y at 12:29 PM on August 4, 2004


I just signed up for a Fametracker account for the express purpose of saying 'um.' Just waiting for validation.
posted by swift at 12:53 PM on August 4, 2004


Is it wrong that I feel sorry for hama7?

Also, I'd never go near any forum that bans use of "um", bans criticism of moderators, has a huge FAQ written by those same asshole moderators, etc. (you know the type I'm talking about). In fact, if a forum I use now suddenly turned like that, I would likely put in quite a lot of effort to make said moderators lives' more difficult. Is that wrong too? Who knows.
posted by reklaw at 12:54 PM on August 4, 2004


I got banned from twop because in a thread about the cancelation of a show filled with paens to the genius of the mod and how much everyone would miss her, I posted "this proves that in every cloud there really is a silver lining". The comment was deleted and I was banned from twop.

What always bugged me is that I approve of moderation—more heavy-handed moderation than many other people do. But my argument against this particular twop mod was that the moderation and exercize of authority had apparently become its own raison d'etre, no longer the ostensive purpose of making the site a good place to be. Because, in this particular forum anyway, about 10% of the well-intentioned comments would start with someone preemptively apologizing to the mod in the (not so off) chance that they might have inadvertently offended her somehow. It's nearly a culture of fear. That's just not healthy.

I should also say that I very nearly got the job editing one of the largest and most trafficked discussion sites anywhere on the net. That site's plagued with problems caused by trolls—had I got the position, I would have wielded a heavy-hand. But, I would hope, with kindness and consideration.

I'd prefer that Matt moderate MeFi a bit more than he does. But as others have said, he deserves a lot of credit for the relatively even-handed and judicious manner in which he moderates MeFi. It's easy to criticize, it's much harder to actually do it well. And I think Matt does, all things considered.

And, yeah, thank god MeFi isn't twop or the like.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 1:03 PM on August 4, 2004


I know it's just a website and it's just one post, but:

Posting a link to the history of a controversial phrase plus a press release from a politically charged fringe group without explanation or commentary is lobbing a turd into the middle of the pool.

We are just going to have to vehemently disagree here. What is even remotely "controversial" about the phrase "In God We Trust"? Have you looked at any money lately, heard an oath taken in court, or a said the pledge of allegiance? I find it outrageous that anyone could consider mentioning God or a Creator "controversial".

The American Family Organization is a "politically charged fringe group"? More politically charged than, say, Michael Moore's "love" for America? Certainly no more politically charged than the New York Times, Washington Post, or Guardian editorial pages from which there is no shortage of nauseatingly regular posts, no more politically charged than complaining that Cuban communists are unable to obtain U.S. visas, or accusing the Bushitler administration of faking terrorist captures to interfere with the Democrats' filthy debacle... uh, convention. What a waste of time.

There were fifty-five links in that post. One was from the American Family Organization. That's about 1.8%.

Hostile, derisive, surly posts and comments insulting "small government types", Christians and Christianity, often religion in general are perfectly acceptable, yet a post remotely supportive of the acknowledgement of God is deleted and compared to a "turd", and dismissed as a "troll" by none other than the site's owner! This is precisely the type of liberal fascist "tolerant" atmosphere that is being cultivated and maintained, and it's ridiculous and disgusting.

The issue of the separation of church and state is an important one because so few people understand it, or have been intentionally misled. The state cannot officially sanction any religion by edict, as was the case with England, and the founders knew to protect from this. State constitutions, pledges, and slogans which acknowledge God do not force the entire populace to attend Methodist church ceremonies, for example, and that's what the separation was designed to prevent.
posted by hama7 at 1:13 PM on August 4, 2004


Hostile, derisive, surly posts and comments insulting 'small government types', Christians and Christianity, often religion in general are perfectly acceptable...

Not when they're like your post. Not to me, anyway. I mean, c'mon. We argue about this all the time. There are other people who see the blue as an opportunity to spout off about something that everyone is arguing about already, has been argued to death everywhere, linking to yet another argument somewhere about it, for the purpose of a "good discussion" which supposedly will ensue. Some of these folks are leftys. And you've heard me and other people complaining that there is a somewhat increased tolerance for them than rightys. But it's not such an enormous discrepancy that it disguises the entire principle. These sorts of posts are shit posts. Period.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 1:27 PM on August 4, 2004


Well,
If the standard is whether Matt reads the thread before he deletes it, then he must not have read the blue today. Or if that standard is divisive and not likely to yield serious discussion.

Half the posts on there today should be deleted if Matt had any moderation integrity.
posted by Seth at 1:31 PM on August 4, 2004


it's not just that matt's a good moderator - it's also the american obsession with the appearance of neutrality. the quaint idea that there's such a thing as unadorned fact (which is doubly strange when you consider that american academia apparently swallowed the postmodern bait whole). or a neutral moderator.

matt is an excellent moderator. he's also a moderator with political opinions, moderating a site with a clear political bias. anyone who expect politically neutral treatment is going to be upset.

[on preview - hama7 shows exactly what i mean. he's right, in that his post is much less biassed than many others (compared to some vague notion of "centre" - i think it's possible to both argue that there is a general consensus on what that could be and say that news sources are not neutral). he's wrong to think that means much. bias is normal - it's not bad moderating and it's not unfair, it's just how it is. people here like having their politics reinforced - all that challenging does is produce hostility. so the post becomes a troll post - not because it's inherently "bad" or "unbalanced", but because people here don't want it.]
posted by andrew cooke at 1:31 PM on August 4, 2004


And to think I missed all the 8/1 hoohah because my daughter spilled sweet iced tea on the dsl modem.
posted by konolia at 1:35 PM on August 4, 2004


had another user made the post, there may have been a chance that it wouldn't have been deleted. a post about a typical conservative non-issue, combined hama7's reputation for saying things like "Democrats' filthy debacle... uh, convention" smugly and without giggling equals no good for nobody.

also of interest is his extension participation in the sorts of posts he deems bad.
posted by mcsweetie at 1:44 PM on August 4, 2004


er extensive! whatever.
posted by mcsweetie at 1:49 PM on August 4, 2004


Half the posts on there today should be deleted if Matt had any moderation integrity.

Seth, please read my comments here again. I'm not going to delete everything that's just sort of crappy, or kind of assy. I only delete stuff that's obviously bad (like last week's link mocking a Bush speech transcript).

I deleted hama7's post because he said he wasn't going to post political threads anymore and his last ones caused quite a stir (and he's welcome to post any comment he wants -- this is just about threads). This was another post filled with crap by people saying religion sucked, the post sucked, etc.

hama7, it's no big deal to get a post deleted, I double-post all the time, and sometimes delete my own posts if the discussion is complete crap telling me to delete them. I say forget about it and move on.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 1:57 PM on August 4, 2004


And to think I missed all the 8/1 hoohah because my daughter spilled sweet iced tea on the dsl modem.

Oh, it may not have happened where you live, but the events of 8/1 have touched us all. We lost our innocence that day.
posted by Mayor Curley at 2:00 PM on August 4, 2004


What is even remotely "controversial" about the phrase "In God We Trust"? Have you looked at any money lately, heard an oath taken in court, or a said the pledge of allegiance? I find it outrageous that anyone could consider mentioning God or a Creator "controversial".

I'd be willing to bet that if it wasn't controversial, you wouldn't have posted it. The controversey isn't over the phrase "In God We Trust," it's over the separation of church and state.

There were fifty-five links in that post. One was from the American Family Organization. That's about 1.8%.

There were two links on the front page, one was the American Family Organization. That's about 50%.

a post remotely supportive of the acknowledgement of God is deleted and compared to a "turd", and dismissed as a "troll" by none other than the site's owner!

Who else would be able to delete it besides the site's owner? Did you think your post would result in anything but a flamewar? If not, you're trolling. Even if you're not, you apparently promised not to post political threads.

The issue of the separation of church and state is an important one because so few people understand it, or have been intentionally misled.

That's what I hear about gun control and abortion, too.
posted by swift at 2:17 PM on August 4, 2004


the acknowledgement of God is deleted and compared to a "turd"

Oddly, this exact combination of elements was a seminal event in the development of the young Carl Jung.

Carry on.
posted by soyjoy at 2:43 PM on August 4, 2004


just checking in late to wave at all my fellow former-TWoPers here. Um, I had no idea there were so many of us! And yeah, to say to all of you whining about Matt's "heavy-handed" moderation style: you have not one tiny clue what heavy-handed moderation actually looks like.

a post remotely supportive of the acknowledgement of God is deleted and compared to a "turd", and dismissed as a "troll" by none other than the site's owner!

Land sakes! We've got a touch of the neurasthenia to go along with the vapors, do we, Miss Scarlet?


posted by scody at 2:57 PM on August 4, 2004


I wish there was a website somewhere entirely free from moderation (not even Slashdot or K5 qualify there). Free speech in the sense of letting people yell "fire" in the proverbial crowded theatre. A site with no moderators whatsoever that promises never to remove anything, but has decent voting and killfiles, would rock. Am I the only one who thinks this?
posted by reklaw at 3:24 PM on August 4, 2004


Yeah, usenet's cool.
posted by sonofsamiam at 3:27 PM on August 4, 2004


reklaw, that doesn't exist because it's never been shown to work.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 3:42 PM on August 4, 2004


that doesn't exist because it's never been shown to work.

how could it be shown it can work if it never has existed?
posted by trharlan at 3:58 PM on August 4, 2004


why is anything anything?
posted by mcsweetie at 4:06 PM on August 4, 2004


Reklaw, it would be interesting to see that tried, but I suspect there would be a very high probability that it would turn into an unreadable mess. Unless, of course, it just involved a relatively small group of people who were committed to making the site worthwhile.
posted by orange swan at 4:12 PM on August 4, 2004


I wish there was a website somewhere entirely free from moderation
Meta-Talk?
posted by thomcatspike at 4:15 PM on August 4, 2004


how could it be shown it can work if it never has existed?

Every community starts out that way, so they do exist. Then some ne'r do wells come in and stink the place up, and moderation takes hold. I guess I meant no mature communities exist as reklaw described, because they've never been shown to work.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 4:17 PM on August 4, 2004


I second sonofsamiam, reklaw precisely described Usenet. If that's what you want, go there, and I mean that with all wide-eyed sincerity, and not even a hint of snark.
posted by Wulfgar! at 4:18 PM on August 4, 2004


Go dig through the Google Groups archives, reklaw, if you'd like a sense of what "utterly unmoderated results" in - usenet was never the most effective medium, but at least it was containable prior to AOL's providing access for their users. Overnight, the number of participants... what? tripled? quadrupled?... and the always tenuous self-policing balance was destroyed. Over the next year or two, usenet degenerated into the unseemly, useless backwater it remains to this day. While MetaFilter - all too frequently for my taste - sometimes teeters on the brink of that same precipice, the recognition of matthowie's authority always seems to save it at the last, spine-tingling moment, as in the deletion of hama7's provocative yet pointless post about the phrase "In God We Trust"...

I for one welcome our delete-key-wielding overlord.
posted by JollyWanker at 4:23 PM on August 4, 2004


sonofsamiam is right. Anyone here still regularly hang out on usenet, in the alt forums? The life cycle of self destruction became very predictable, and very old. Matt can't please everyone, and his moderation style has never given me pause. A complete free for all hits the lower common denominator pretty damn quick. Give it a try, reklaw, and then report back.
posted by jokeefe at 4:36 PM on August 4, 2004


One of the reasons that the unmoderated groups in the alt.* heirarchy manage to be completely free of moderation is because of the distributed nature of USENET and the explicit lack of any authority whatsoever for the alt.* groups. That's a very unusual circumstance. Otherwise, someone, somewhere has the obvious legal responsibility for what appears in the forum that they own and operate—and this always requires some sort of moderation at some point or another.

Because "fire!" in a theater isn't legal, you know, pretty much anywhere. And legality should be the minimum standard for evaluating the acceptability of conduct. What it means, and what happens when something is determined "unacceptable" is another matter.

Finally, if one looks at the self-policed unmoderated alt.* groups, one finds the same sort of arguments we have here in MeTa. Sure, no one deletes posts (not with authority, anyway). But standards for behavior spontaneously arise, people complain about other people's behavior, and there are counter-claims of hypocrisy, yadda, yadda, yadda. It aint much different, excepting more crap and spam to wade through.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 4:40 PM on August 4, 2004


**shudder**

moderation free would have allowed the logins, all of them, to remain.

and the cam girls and the pomposity and abuse that was several banned former members (but not those that have come back :)

SqualorFilter. If you want it, build it and see if they come.
posted by dness2 at 4:45 PM on August 4, 2004


My fametracker um.
posted by swift at 4:46 PM on August 4, 2004


I think a few people read me wrong: I certainly don't think mefi should be anything like that. I was hardly advocating a return to the days of usenet, either. I think that sorting threads by number of votes or something similar could make it work. I'll shut up and stuff now, because I'm just using this as a place to articulate things that I've been thinking about for a while, and reading people's accounts of the kind of merciless moderation that goes on elsewhere makes me all the more determined that there should be something like it.

Give it a try, reklaw, and then report back.

Maybe I will.
posted by reklaw at 5:00 PM on August 4, 2004


Um, swift: you're doing a good job of making their point for them. You're trolling fametracker. In this case, your "um" is content-free; but given the context you provide here, it's obvious that you are not participating in the forum in good faith and you hope to piss someone off. (And mine was a very mildly snarky "um".)
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 5:09 PM on August 4, 2004


I deleted hama7's post because he said he wasn't going to post political threads anymore and his last ones caused quite a stir

You know, Matt, I never said that I'd promised not to post political threads anymore, and though I know you have a lot of e-mail to read, I also never asked you to delete a political post, contrary to what you have suggested above. I have a copy of the e-mail I sent to you, and it says nothing of the sort. I think it's vulgar to throw confidential e-mail on to a public site, and I never will, but you're misrepresenting what I said. Some animals are more equal than others.

"Quite a stir"? You have no idea what a "stir" the deletion of this post has caused me. I think back to to what evanizer, Steven Den Beste, and 111 have said, and they're absolutely right.

If you're interested, the In God We Trust post can be found up in this piece.
posted by hama7 at 5:09 PM on August 4, 2004


when do we invade loginistan?
posted by quonsar at 6:09 PM on August 4, 2004


hama7, I knew evanizer, I posted with evanizer, evanizer was a freind of mine.

You, sir, are no evanizer.
posted by jonmc at 6:11 PM on August 4, 2004


Metafilter: I think back to to what evanizer, Steven Den Beste, and 111 have said, and they're absolutely right

*falls down laughing*
posted by amberglow at 6:18 PM on August 4, 2004


I think back to to what evanizer, Steven Den Beste, and 111 have said, and they're absolutely right.


"Where's that humming noise coming from, it's driving me mad!"
posted by dash_slot- at 6:23 PM on August 4, 2004


In this case, your "um" is content-free; but given the context you provide here, it's obvious that you are not participating in the forum in good faith and you hope to piss someone off.

You're right, I didn't participate in good faith, although my intention was actually to see if there were some kind of um-filter.

I don't think any of the people discussing Reese Witherspoon are upset by my saying um. I hope they aren't, anyway.
posted by swift at 6:42 PM on August 4, 2004


i've got to say something about usenet ... i'm currently having the best online conversation i've ever had with anyone there ... in the alt.* heirarchy ... it's not dead for me one bit ... and there are other newsgroups where good conversations happen, too
posted by pyramid termite at 7:21 PM on August 4, 2004


I think back to to what evanizer, Steven Den Beste, and 111 have said, and they're absolutely right.

One hopes that hama7 is made of sterner stuff than his self-selected fellow travellers, and will endure the indignity of torrents of abuse by the CommieSymp HomoLefty Godless Hippy Democrat Scourge, and remain at Metafilter, if for no other reason that to help remind some of us of what we don't want to be.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:22 PM on August 4, 2004


swift, i hope everybody at fametracker dies after reading your "um". seriously. all of them. dead. yup. just because.
posted by bargle at 7:28 PM on August 4, 2004


um.
posted by wendell at 7:33 PM on August 4, 2004


Hey, I'm not defending the rule. In fact, my point was that there is the letter of the law and the spirit, and that often people get caught up enforcing the former at the expense of the latter. Ironically, though, registering for a site for no other reason than to violate the letter of its law would, I think, easily qualify for violating its spirit. Don't you think?
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 7:37 PM on August 4, 2004


I saw a robin today.
posted by namespan at 7:46 PM on August 4, 2004


(in sheepish Beaver Cleaver voice) Yeah well, um, I guess so.
posted by swift at 7:50 PM on August 4, 2004


I saw a robin today.

i shot one with a pellet gun.
posted by quonsar at 7:51 PM on August 4, 2004


The September That Never Ended. Those were good times, good times... DAMN YOU, AOL!
posted by keswick at 7:52 PM on August 4, 2004


I'll see your robin and raise you a necrophiliac mallard rapist.
posted by trondant at 7:53 PM on August 4, 2004


I demand that wendell be banned, for his interruption of this important bitchfest! Important, I say!
posted by graventy at 7:58 PM on August 4, 2004


am I the only one that remembers that show Eerie, Indiana?
posted by mcsweetie at 7:59 PM on August 4, 2004


you're the only one that watched it, mcsweet ; >
posted by amberglow at 8:21 PM on August 4, 2004


The Metata.
posted by swift at 8:28 PM on August 4, 2004


You say metata and I say metahtah.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 9:14 PM on August 4, 2004


Metafilter: Violating the spirit
posted by rushmc at 9:29 PM on August 4, 2004


Wow. Those were some bodacious Metatas.
posted by taz at 9:36 PM on August 4, 2004


You're right, I didn't participate in good faith, although my intention was actually to see if there were some kind of um-filter.

um, they told me,
um
um um um
um

I'm not sure what to bring
um um um um um
to bring before... something
um um um um um

before... some kind of king
um um um um ummmmm
um um um ummmmm
um um um ummmmm

so, I'll say -- I think --
um um um um ummmmm
some kind of ummmmm

The little ummer boy ya know?

posted by weston at 9:48 PM on August 4, 2004


The issue of the separation of church and state is an important one because so few people understand it, or have been intentionally misled. The state cannot officially sanction any religion by edict, as was the case with England, and the founders knew to protect from this. State constitutions, pledges, and slogans which acknowledge God do not force the entire populace to attend Methodist church ceremonies, for example, and that's what the separation was designed to prevent.

And what a tragedy it is that you chose not to articulate your motives so clearly in your original post.
posted by Vidiot at 12:10 AM on August 5, 2004


One hopes that hama7 is made of sterner stuff than his self-selected fellow travellers, and will endure the indignity of torrents of abuse by the CommieSymp HomoLefty Godless Hippy Democrat Scourge, and remain at Metafilter, if for no other reason that to help remind some of us of what we don't want to be.

- here, here, whilst I often find myself diametrically opposed to everything that hama7 seems to hold dear, it is important that vastly differing view-points can be espoused and (sensibly) discussed.
posted by johnnyboy at 5:26 AM on August 5, 2004


um, they told me,
um
um um um
um


The freedom here is just intoxicating, no?
posted by orange swan at 7:35 AM on August 5, 2004


Filthy debacle?
posted by sudama at 7:48 AM on August 5, 2004


And what a tragedy it is that you chose not to articulate your motives so clearly in your original post.

well, they weren't invented until after the post.
posted by quonsar at 10:00 AM on August 5, 2004


well, they weren't invented until after the post.

My point precisely.

Rather, hama7 chose to turdify the punchbowl and scramble for a justification after the fact.
posted by Vidiot at 11:26 AM on August 5, 2004


hama7 chose to turdify the punchbowl and scramble for a justification after the fact.

Right, and I also never considered that the Declaration of Independence clearly states that the unalienable rights of man are bestowed by "Nature's God", and their "Creator", not by a monarch or state.

I guess the Declaration of Independence is a "turd" too. Unbelievable.
posted by hama7 at 1:27 PM on August 5, 2004


I guess the Declaration of Independence is a "turd" too. Unbelievable.

Bing bing bing bing!

Ladies and gentlemen, we have a Straw Man Alert. Do not be alarmed.

Way to put words in my mouth, hama7. I can't believe you wrote the above with a straight face.

I was agreeing with Matt's assessment that you dropped a turd in the communal punchbowl, and I am arguing that you made what you knew to be a deliberately inflammatory post (e.g., "trolling"), and then scrambled to justify it, in straightforward description that was curiously absent from your original front-page post.

And you attack me for supposedly saying the Declaration of Independence is a "turd"? That's unbelievable.

P.S.: You do know, I'm sure, about the Jefferson Bible, written by Declaration of Independence author Thomas Jefferson...
posted by Vidiot at 2:23 PM on August 5, 2004


I enjoy all hama7's posts (as I do my friend Vidiot's) and enjoy MetaFilter a lot more thanks to their contributions.

I do realize that, as a fellow conservative, I'm immediately more sympathetic to hama7's comments and values than the majority of other users. Still, I can't fail to offer my own opinion that he is consistently treated unfairly.

At root, there is the socialist idea ("liberal" in the American usage) that human beings are improvable. Individuals are seen as masses of qualities and defects and the goal is to encourage the former and decry the latter.

This is singularly exemplified by the treatment MetaFilter (and Matt) give to hama7. The notion, in caricature, is as follows: here's this conservative person who makes great art posts. But, when he posts politically, he's just too right wing. Solution? Have him stay the fuck out of politics.

I urge you all to consider the common sense alternative - call it conservative if you must. Human beings aren't lists of components you can click on, choosing the qualities you like and leaving out those you don't. Human beings are packages: each one of us is a whole shebang.

We've not only got to take the rough with the smooth. We've also got to realize that someone else's "smooth" may be our "rough". And, above all, we should embrace the whole human being, warts and all.

With hama7 there's been a conscious effort to get him to conform to other users' assessment of him - a good poster marred by his misguided conservatism. You might as well come out and say "Just stick to the poity pitchers, peaches!"

Erverywhere on MetaFilter there is the persistent, nannyish advice to "do this instead of that". All it means is "we prefer this side of you". The tragedy - and glory - is that this advice is humanly impossible to take. Human beings are complex entities and they must be taken as such.

It would be quite easy to imagine a parallel universe where a down-to-earth conservative crowd would enjoy hama7's political posts but think his art posts were a waste of time. That would be equally stupid. But stupid nonetheless.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 3:56 PM on August 5, 2004


yadda yadda platitude yadda absurd generalization yadda. ho hum.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 4:32 PM on August 5, 2004


The thing about the declaration of independence is that you can take out "by their Creator" and it still makes sense-- "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

The point isn't that there's a deity that gives us the rights; the point is that by virtue of being a living human being we have them. Same thing with the "Nature's God"-- it directly follows "Laws of Nature" which makes much more sense-- i.e. it seems to me all the references to God in the Declaration were more a way of saying "We don't know what the governing force(s) of the universe is/are but whatever they are they demand this".

Of course, that's actually discussing the original post; I think hama7 knew exactly what he was doing when he posted that here, and he's being disingenuous if he says he doesn't. Sure it's well researched but it's neither newsworthy nor something neat on the web that nobody knows about-- it's a way to provoke a response.

If it means that much to you but it doesn't fit in here put it on your own blog. Quit acting victimized; frankly, I find your methods of debate reek of trolling so I'm finding it very hard to sympathize with you.
posted by nath at 4:50 PM on August 5, 2004


My abject apologies. I didn't really mean to say "um".
I meant to say Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm.
posted by wendell at 5:55 PM on August 5, 2004


One more thing: hama's post should have been deleted for being a Double Post:
In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash.
posted by wendell at 5:59 PM on August 5, 2004


Fuddy-duddy ole England's Constitution evolves quite effectively without being written down, it seems to me.

If we were that hung up about the odd word in a legal document which formed part of our so-called 'Unwritten Constitution', we can just repeal an Act and / or amend the law.

Suddenly, that seems a lot more attractive - I'd hate to be stuck with the beliefs and attitudes of Georgian Britain. Why do you have to keep fighting about 250 year old words?
posted by dash_slot- at 7:04 PM on August 5, 2004


We've also got to realize that someone else's "smooth" may be our "rough". And, above all, we should embrace the whole human being, warts and all.

After all, Hitler painted roses, right?
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:19 PM on August 5, 2004


Thanks for the attempt at conciliation, Migs. We'll see how well it works.

I don't think it's quite the case that conservatives and their views are uniformly attacked on MetaFilter. I think that yes, conservatives are definitely outnumbered by liberals around these parts. But I also think that the relatively low numbers of conservatives, coupled with poor argument skills (hysteria, straw men, ad hominem attacks, trolling, et cetera), leads to those viewpoints getting routinely ridiculed on MetaFilter.

(NOTE: I am not saying that conservatives always have poor argument skills. Nor am I saying that no liberals do. We have some really sharp conservatives here who are a pleasure to discuss things with. (I wish we had more.) We also have lots and lots of shrill liberals with poor argument skills.)

I like hama7's art posts. I don't like his political posts. I don't think that the answer is to somehow forbid him from posting about matters political; I think the answer is to ask him to take a deep breath, maybe count to ten, and try to put the same effort into a well-crafted, informative political post that he obviously does in his art posts.

It's not that I'm "insensitive" to his political views, as Miguel postulates. It's that he doesn't argue them. He trolls, as seen in the post under discussion. And when called on it, then he proffers the clearly-written explanation of what he was supposedly trying to achieve all along. (Although none of this lucidity was present in the original post, or else we wouldn't be here in MeTa.) I agree with nath: it's disingenuous, and does very little to further actual political debate.

(Now, I'm a liberal, and so I'm necessarily seeing things from that perspective. But it doesn't help, either, that most conservative media these days express themselves with hysteria, straw men, ad hominem attacks. I'd say there's a greater percentage of that kind of thing on the right than there is on the left, but that's just my opinion, and truth be told another MeFi thread entirely.)
posted by Vidiot at 7:27 PM on August 5, 2004


After all, Hitler painted roses, right?

In Godwin we trust!
posted by soyjoy at 7:32 PM on August 5, 2004


Some animals are more equal than others.

You realise Orwell was a socialist, of course, hama7?
posted by Jimbob at 8:39 PM on August 5, 2004


Dagnabbit, I keep the MetaBird grounded a WHOLE DAY, hundreds of posts later, there's still no discussion of The Panopticontological nature of the internet, NOR of the Burning Wasteland of Thwarted Discourse.

Kids these days, it's like they got no ambition.

What the hell is everyone...ohmiGOD it's back to "do conservatives get attacked on Metafilter"? Of course they do. It's statistics. Noone seems to argue the proportions are equal. So the odds are a lot higher that when someone's feeling fiesty, or makes a snap editorial judgement, they're a liberal. It's just a sample bias, can we let it go? Sheesh.

Man, that's no fun at all.

The evanescent nature of Meta-discourse, when reified as "text" on a "page", collapses into itself as does a quantum potential when observed. Thus, considering the presumably ergodic nature of Meta-readership as a potential distribution, one would expect the result of most experimental observations, the wave-worn driftglass tossed ashore by the tumultuous currents of attention and emotion, to be shaped most by that narrative component which dominates said distributiuon. Most importantly, this shape is determined by the ensemble, without any one member consciously seeking to shape it thus.
posted by freebird at 9:56 PM on August 5, 2004


hakuna matata
posted by swift at 10:07 PM on August 5, 2004


What Nath said.

Hama7 may occasionally be interesting, Miguel, but as Jules said, "that would have to be one charming motherfuckin pig" over an extended period of time before people are convinced that he no longer belongs to the troll tribe.

Argue your convictions Hama7, in a measured way, fight through the preconceived notions of the rest of metafilter (notions based on your own actions, don't forget) by sticking to a rational debate, persevere through the indignities of deleted FPPs and the community will learn to always give you the benefit of the doubt. Just look at Miguel, he's earned enough respect (by always being cordial and engaging) to make long defenses of you and ParisParamus without provoking hostility. Defenses that fall far short, in my opinion (because he glosses over the fact that you don't really ever "discuss" your ideas, and PP is in fact not a nice guy on Metafilter, ever, regardless of how he behaves on the phone with Miguel), but I'm sure that most took the time to read them and took them seriously because of the author's history. In fact I am addressing you directly for the first time (instead of ignoring you as I usually do) based solely on the coin that Miguel has earned.

We can all learn from that.
posted by sic at 2:26 AM on August 6, 2004


What freebird may have said.
posted by liam at 10:33 AM on August 6, 2004


Every community starts out that way, so they do exist. Then some ne'r do wells come in and stink the place up, and moderation takes hold. I guess I meant no mature communities exist as reklaw described, because they've never been shown to work.

That's not entirely true. I've been part of a completely open online community for the last... wow... ten years now, and we've never had to apply moderation. We even socialised our trolls. We were fairly visible at one point as well, mentioned several times in mainstream music magazines.

That said, I've seen similar implode due to rampant trolling. An entire community upped and started its own closed & moderated (albeit lightly) site to escape a couple of particularly poisonous individuals (and has flourished as a result). Steve & Hama are lightweights by comparison.
posted by inpHilltr8r at 1:07 PM on August 6, 2004


Argue your convictions Hama7, in a measured way, fight through the preconceived notions of the rest of metafilter (notions based on your own actions, don't forget) by sticking to a rational debate, persevere through the indignities of deleted FPPs and the community will learn to always give you the benefit of the doubt.

He won't because he can't. Lord knows, there's loas of us here in the middle waiting to hear a reasonable, conservative case. All we ever get is hypocrisy, bigotry and fallacy.

Sure, all sides are guilty of those: but don't troll and then provide a rational explanation, puh-lease. That's just embarassing.
posted by dash_slot- at 4:09 PM on August 6, 2004


Lord knows, there's loas of us here in the middle waiting to hear a reasonable, conservative case.

MetaFilter now makes me afeard ...
posted by Wulfgar! at 4:25 PM on August 6, 2004


So, we moderate african spirits await your talking points, Bushistas...
posted by dash_slot- at 6:02 PM on August 6, 2004


First, it was the "best of the web" lie.

Then, it was the "it's all about the link" falsity.

Next, it was the outrageous "MetaFilter doesn't do politics well" corker.

Then it was the "discussion of politics on MetaFilter blows goats and I would sooner ban it entirely than stomach another Bush baaaaad! thread" obscenity.

Then: Metafilter is not a discussion forum, but is a place for "high discourse" of whatever's on the web, except news, or not, unless it can be discoursed highly, like blaming Fox News for something, or bitching about drug laws that are too uncool, or blaming those pesky fundamentalists and Republicans for lack of CD availability at Wal-mart.

It's condescendingly and sneeringly, of course, *not* Usenet or Fark, but is, rather, as far as can be discerned, an obsequious, flailing, and self-congratulatory far-left liberal political playpen where, as andrew cooke so aptly stated above; "people here like having their politics reinforced". And to think the post about the talking robot orangutan was one of the reasons I wanted to join MetaFilter.

Absolution of communism and its inevitable atrocities, vindication, nay; undisguised blatant advocation of socialism and its cynical, criminal, confiscatory, iniquitous depredation, the idiotic, suicidal promotion and advocacy of the arrogant extremism of postmodern hippy nihilist moral relativism, and the inane bravado of anti-Western "diversity" (as long as that diversity does not include any conservative opinion, or input from the Right, and is necessarily anti-individual, anti-merit, and anti-independent thought), is championed cravenly, with full knowledge that the inmates run the asylum, and that the warden is also an inmate.

After a near constant barrage of NYT, LATimes, Washington Post and every other undeleted liberal excuses for papers designed for the removal of excrement, indulgent, pliant, gutless, total ingestion of liberal media propaganda, insulting condescension toward disagreement, blame, and crashingly childish numb lilliputian groupthink, I can only conclude that I passed Michelle Malkin's Diversity Test with a scorching 95%, only because I don't know who Lee Greenwood is yet, and George Will's Platform column has irretrievably depth-charged, keelhauled, and torpedoed Kerry's pathetic swift boat campaign.

Not to say that a relative few don't still post great links.

Are the phrases adieu, adios, adeus, among a host of others in every language and culture, also "turds"?

Inconceivable.
posted by hama7 at 6:53 PM on August 6, 2004


You didn't read vidiot then?
posted by dash_slot- at 7:19 PM on August 6, 2004


"...so, of course, you can see why I'm angry at those chickens."

Uh-huh.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 7:20 PM on August 6, 2004


WHO IS JOHN GALT?
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 7:26 PM on August 6, 2004


ALSO, WHERE ARE MY PANTS?
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 7:27 PM on August 6, 2004


And to think the post about the talking robot orangutan was one of the reasons I wanted to join MetaFilter.
See? It just goes to show you--the C3P0 a Drama Queen? post is when i first really felt at home.

Isn't Michelle Malkin the one now calling for Internment Camps?
posted by amberglow at 8:47 PM on August 6, 2004


Yeah, and see a guest blogger over at the Volokh Conspiracy just really demonstrate, at length, how stupid her book really is.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:52 PM on August 6, 2004


that's really something, EB--thanks. (Malkin's response too.)
posted by amberglow at 9:17 PM on August 6, 2004


Michelle Malkin is just another dedicated journalist who is in training to fill the niche when Ann Coulter inevitably keels over from some form of heart failure. I sincerely regret that hama7 has chosen to cast his political lot with the American Fascists, Ayatollahs and Robber Barons, but then, down deep, I always thought his "great art posts" were mostly pretentious elitist posturings, rarely clicking on his links, and usually unimpressed when I did. But I went along with the art-elite groupthink here (which reached a much higher and much more stifling level than any political groupthink here ever has), in order to ensure that he would stick around specifically to stir the political pot. But the whole "Right-Wing Chic" thing has become simultaneously boring and desperate (one look at today's stock market, and you can see the economy sinking the Republicans' ship faster than a thousand terrorists). I think there are many very interesting political issues that will continue to appear on MetaFilter, and none of them will bring aid and comfort to the type of political-parrot who continues to try to defend the Swift Boat Liars and other professional hatemongers. Maybe hama7 should just take a break from this site and spend his time stocking up the canned food and ammunition at his compound while the people he defines as "communitsts" start the job of repairing the nation his allies have done so much to destroy.

If you need some place to put some of your ammo, hama, I'll lend you my bag.

Have a nice day.
posted by wendell at 9:24 PM on August 6, 2004


Absolution of communism and its inevitable atrocities, vindication, nay; undisguised blatant advocation of socialism and its cynical, criminal, confiscatory, iniquitous depredation, the idiotic, suicidal promotion and advocacy of the arrogant extremism of postmodern hippy nihilist moral relativism, and the inane bravado of anti-Western "diversity" (as long as that diversity does not include any conservative opinion, or input from the Right, and is necessarily anti-individual, anti-merit, and anti-independent thought), is championed cravenly, with full knowledge that the inmates run the asylum, and that the warden is also an inmate.

Well, at least we know Booboo has a thesaurus!

Also : ha-haa. Spittle-spraying outbursts like that just make me strap on the LOLerskates. Unless it was self-parody, in which case: well done!

But I don't really think it was.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:54 PM on August 6, 2004


there's loas of us here in the middle waiting to hear a reasonable, conservative case.

MeFi is haunted by loas? That explains a lot.
posted by homunculus at 11:48 PM on August 6, 2004


Nice post, Miguel, and I agree that some here do hold such an attitude toward hama7. But I think the majority simply wish he would participate in the give-and-take of discussion which is the community goal, if not the community standard, on the site. The reason so many self-identified conservatives are heckled and, eventually, hated is not their ideas but their willful contentiousness, their overbearing unpleasantness. Unfortunately, some people just enjoy conflict, so they enter an environment that is generally predisposed against their viewpoint with the specific intent of "shaking things up" or even "pissing people off." I don't like these people, because I think they are intentionally contributing to the noise not the signal, and I am glad every time one leaves. This has nothing to do with their ideas...I can listen to someone describing and promoting views that are radically different from mine all day long and happily come back for more tomorrow. And since I'm not a "liberal," I don't always even disagree with some conservative viewpoints. But even when I agree with what is being said, HOW it is being said often puts me off. This, of course, happens on the "liberal" end, too, but it continues to astound me how much uglier and more vitriolic is the discourse from the conservative end of the spectrum, here and elsewhere in U.S. society, and an observer as sensitive to tone must be aware of this radical difference if you are being honest with yourself. WHY this is so is a fascinating question.

It's one thing to disagree; it's quite another to be mean and always on the attack.
posted by rushmc at 12:01 AM on August 7, 2004


It's one thing to disagree; it's quite another to be mean and always on the attack.

For what it's worth (and I don't think you were addressing me, but it's a valid and important point), there are precisely two people in this community of thousands that I simply cannot abide, after months -- hell, years -- of trying. Their politics have next to nothing to do with it: one would be identified as being on the 'right' and one on the 'left', I'd imagine, if it were put to the poll.

I do try to hold my tongue. I apologize for the times it slips. And I expect there are significantly more than two people who simply cannot stand me. That, as Frank said, 's life.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:19 AM on August 7, 2004


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