Discussion from FPP December 9, 2004 12:26 PM   Subscribe

"...you get more reactions by being obscure." Newish Mefites: An FPP that leads to an interesting discussion is like catching a foul ball at a baseball game...it's a nice outcome, it will probably be one of the things you remember about the game, and you might even want to bring a glove to improve your odds, but it shouldn't be the main reason you come to the park.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders to Etiquette/Policy at 12:26 PM (30 comments total)

As I mentioned in that thread, it should be deleted on principle. I reference the discussion within instead of burdening this thread with a reproduction of the arguments.
posted by Seth at 12:36 PM on December 9, 2004

Meh. It doesn't need to be deleted in principle, I don't think. If everyone disapproves of this strategy, let's just say so. sourbrew will likely accept this and promise not to try this again in the future. Problem solved.
posted by gd779 at 12:43 PM on December 9, 2004

Why did he keep linking to your profile? I found it a little bit creepy, Seth.
posted by icetaco at 12:43 PM on December 9, 2004

Don't forget, sourbrew has already shown a degree of contrition, or at least, an acknowledgement of the fact that being deliberately obscure didn't get him the clicks he was hoping for. And, as he points out, people didn't get upset with him the last time he did this, so he probably figured it was okay.
posted by gd779 at 12:48 PM on December 9, 2004

Well said, stupidsexyFlanders. I also agree with Seth. I appreciate knowing a little about where I am pointing my browser to and/or why. I don't appreciate what sourbrew was trying to do.

What? Doesn't everyone link to Seth? It's what you do, you link to Seth.
posted by studentbaker at 12:51 PM on December 9, 2004

I agree that the FPP was poorly constructed and spoke with sourbrew about it.

I think Seth's over reacting some, calling for a deletion (which can't be seen on the front page) as a means of demonstrating what not to do is kind of assbackwards.

Leave the post up, point to it as an example of what not to do in an FPP.

Maybe Matt can force noobs to go through a checklist process before posts actually go live? Is this relevant, interesting or obscure? Could your post be construed as Shilling for some product? Has it already been discussed ad nauseum (use root words to search)? Why do you want to post it? Etcetera.
posted by fenriq at 1:05 PM on December 9, 2004

I clicked on the link, even though sourbrew didn't describe it at all, since he seemed to be so impressed by it. I found some stupid flash thingy that was instantly boring.

Also, I agree with Seth.
posted by puke & cry at 1:06 PM on December 9, 2004

Okay, we're all having a mandatory meeting on Saturday morning to go over "How To Post On MetaFilter" once and for all.

Be here at 9:00 a.m. Seth, you bring the bagels.
posted by briank at 1:09 PM on December 9, 2004

Considering the size of the recent influx it hasnt been that bad at all.
(I probably just jinxed it though)
posted by vacapinta at 1:14 PM on December 9, 2004

I refuse to click on those Seth links. On principle.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 1:19 PM on December 9, 2004

gd779 - In fact i did accept it. about half way through my flame retardant post.

And stupidsexyflanders i resent being referred to as newish, i joined 6 days after you. It's a shame none of you looked at the site, you guys really missed out on some hot videos.
posted by sourbrew at 1:21 PM on December 9, 2004

But why would I want to go there? I'm afraid "because I say so" isn't enough of a reason. Were it, say, Madamejujuve, I'd be there in a flash: she's proven her mad link skillz and I find her taste matchs mine. You? I have no idea about you. Could be a link to an animated tubgirl, for all I know.
posted by five fresh fish at 1:32 PM on December 9, 2004

also: i said that my intent was to expose it to more people. I apologize for the statement in bold below

"The idea behind that is that you get more reactions by being obscure. Most people will enjoy this video collection however many would simply pass by the link, getting a good number of comments on an fpp is a challenge.

I apologize for offending your senses good sir but i hope you went ahead and looked at the link anyway."

However if you look the rest of that comment was one an apology, and two a statement regarding my attempt to maximize the exposure of this site. Shame on all of you for being snarky just to be snarky. These statements were also the third comments in the thread.
posted by sourbrew at 1:33 PM on December 9, 2004

i resent being referred to as newish, i joined 6 days after you

that's why I said newish.

Actually I wasn't talking to you; as others have pointed out, you got and accepted the feedback in the thread. I just thought your misstep is a good example of an attitude that often leads to poor posts: caring more about getting a reaction than the actual sharing of the link.

And you still don't get it, on preview; you're still talking about "maximizing the exposure" to your link. That's the impulse that got you in trouble. Put the link out there. Let its inherent goodness + the reputation of the poster take care of the maximizing of the exposure. This isn't eBay, there's nothing to be gained by exposure except the stroking of the poster's ego.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 1:38 PM on December 9, 2004

Well, you're playing a dangerous game, sourbrew.

I, for one, clicked on the link, not knowing what the hell it was. It didn't sell itself to me as anything interesting within about 10 seconds, so I just closed the window and went about my day. No offense taken, but the sentiment I walk away with was "whatever."

Now perhaps I did click because it was presented mysteriously, and I wanted to see what the mystery was about. But honestly, I only have 10 seconds to spend investigating wholly myseterious internet links before I give up and walk away. If they're not really worthwile and captivating in a self-explanatory way, I'd rather you helped me make better use of my time by explaining what's behind the link. If I'm interested in that, I'll click it.

I'm kinda running long here, but my point is that if you advertise what the link is, interested folks will click it and enjoy it. Any additional people you manage to suck in by being mysterious, WHO WOULDN'T HAVE CLICKED OTHERWISE are likely to go: "huh. I'm not interested in this. thanks for wasting my time" and go away. What have you gained by sucking them in for those 10 seconds?
posted by scarabic at 1:46 PM on December 9, 2004

posted by majick at 2:32 PM on December 9, 2004

Ya thank year shmaht.
posted by scarabic at 3:21 PM on December 9, 2004

that's why I said newish

Funny, he doesn't look newish.
posted by Stoatfarm at 3:39 PM on December 9, 2004

Everyone on MetaFilter should give Seth his props.
posted by Smart Dalek at 3:52 PM on December 9, 2004

XQUZYPHYR, no Mr Sourbrew, I expect you to DIEEEE! Hahahaha.

Thanks, now I'm gonna be hearing Connery all day long. And I seem to be channelling those SNL Jeopardy skits.
posted by fenriq at 3:56 PM on December 9, 2004

Frankly, all the bitching at new people is really detracting from MeFi, not the new people themselves.
posted by Captaintripps at 5:03 PM on December 9, 2004

Spoken from an perch of obvious impartiality ;)
posted by scarabic at 8:34 PM on December 9, 2004

I'm not going to make any iteration of how long I've lurked or how long I've been on the internet. It's just bullshit.

The rest of you have been morons just as much as us new people. Give it a rest.
posted by Captaintripps at 9:43 PM on December 9, 2004

me, if I can't figure out wtf's inside a post, I usually skip it. unless it's posted by a user whose output I like, then I give her/him the benefit of the doubt and I check the link. otherwise, I skip the post, it's too much work.

now that, for the sake of the argument, I've checked out sourbrew's link, I realize I was right when I skipped it, no disrespect intended. for me, "obscure" does not equal "you get more reactions", it equals "bah". and almost always, one cannot be too clear
posted by matteo at 2:47 AM on December 10, 2004

meh.... good for everyone who at least looked. I really can't hate if you at least went to the site. however, how could you not like the video collection? that is something that will plague me.
posted by sourbrew at 6:45 AM on December 10, 2004

Well, sourbrew, not everyone is just like you. This is a good thing to keep in mind next time you're tempted to post a link with no info because "this is so great it doesn't need any introduction!"
posted by languagehat at 9:05 AM on December 10, 2004

By the way this isn't the first call out for this kind of post. I made a similiar plea a while ago. The consenses in that thread was either it annoyed people or the people it didn't annoy just skipped right on past. Well except for crunchland who seems to be the bravest web surfer I've ever met.

My thread also spawned the worst FPP ever so I guess it wasn't a complete waste.
posted by Mitheral at 9:10 AM on December 10, 2004

The rest of you

us new people

It's just bullshit.

posted by scarabic at 9:27 AM on December 10, 2004

sourbrew - something that you may be missing here is that we share links to benefit each other - not to generate traffic for other sites. Ideally, a front page post can serve both purposes, but you seem dead-set on just scraping up however many eyeballs you can deliver to this site, and the more you can, the more you feel you've accomplished your mission. You're willing to "apologize for offending your senses" as if that makes it okay. It doesn't.

attempt to maximize the exposure of this site

You should be attempting to maximize *our* exposure to interesting and valuable links. I'm sure you think this site is one, I'm just pointing out a subtle difference you need to understand, if you don't want to get seriously fucked eventually.
posted by scarabic at 10:08 AM on December 10, 2004

My thread also spawned the worst FPP ever so I guess it wasn't a complete waste.

Indeed, not.
posted by Captaintripps at 12:17 PM on December 10, 2004

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