4 FAQ tagged with deletion


My Ask Metafilter question was removed as chatfilter. What does that mean?

Ask Metafilter questions need to have some possible answer or should be asking for information that will be put to some practical use. Chatty open-ended questions diminish the usefulness of Ask Metafilter and push other questions off the front page. If you want to avoid having your question flagged and possibly removed, here are some things to avoid.

- Questions where everyone's answer is equally valid along the lines of "What's your favorite X?". Maybe there is a reason you want to know? Super, just put it in your question.
- Asking the question and giving your own answer before getting the answers of others, saying some variant of "I'll go first" If you can authoritatively answer your own question, it's probably not right for AskMe.
- Questions with no problem to be solved or where the problem is some variant of "I'm curious if other people feel like I do"
- Open-ended unanswerable or hypothetical questions like "What if Hitler had never been born?" or made up "what if" science questions. Creating arbitrary constraints and then playing "what if" is not a good use of AskMe.
- Questions that are some version of "What is the deal with X?"or "X sucks, am I right?" tend to not go well on Ask MetaFilter. Please do not rant on AskMe and pretend it is a question.

Put another way "...if your motivation for asking the question is 'I would like to participate in a discussion about X,' then you shouldn't be doing it in AskMe. If your motivation is 'I would like others to explain X to me,' then you're probably OK."
(tags: ) May 3, 2006 - permalink - back to questions

Why was my MetaFilter post deleted?

When a thread is deleted, it is closed to new comments and is removed from the front page but can still be viewed at the permanent URL for the thread. There is a brief "reason for deletion" given when a MetaFilter thread is removed. The most common reasons are:

- double-post - the exact link or one linking to nearly the same content has already been posted
- self-link or promotional linking - you posted something to MetaFilter that is on your own site or that you contributed heavily towards, or that you're involved (professionally or otherwise) in promoting, or your post concerns a situation that you're personally involved with.
- newsfilter - you posted a link to a news article without creating a post that would lead to good discussion
- axegrinding - you posted on a hot-button topic that you frequently post about and/or used heavy-handed editorializing language.
- broken link - you posted a link to something that is no longer available on the web
- stunt post - you were doing something cutesy or pointed with your post that was making some sort of statement, not linking to something neat on the web
- fundraising/promotion - you linked to a "sign this petition" or fundraising link [Kickstarter, indiegogo]

Please note: post deletions are a judgement of the post, not the poster. MetaFilter is a moderated site and not all posts pass muster, but deletion is meant as a curatorial decision, not a punishment; most folks who post a fair amount will have something deleted occasionally. Unless you're actually spamming, a deletion doesn't mean you're in trouble.
(tags: ) April 20, 2006 - permalink - back to questions

Why was my MetaFilter comment deleted?

MetaFilter is a moderated site. There are some types of comments that are either toxic to discussion or disallowed on the site entirely that may get removed by moderators. Some reasons comments may be removed are described here, and in more detail in the Metafilter Community Guidelines and its supplementary page about Microaggressions and making space for everyone.

- Racist or otherwise hateful comments. This includes misgendering and slurs. It also includes ironic racism/sexism/homophobia/transphobia; people who sarcastically put on a racist voice to make a point about racism, or who make hateful comments ironically (assuming everyone should know they're joking) cause derails and make discussion difficult.
- Spamming. Adding off-topic, context-free, or SEO-laden comments with undisclosed links to your own or others' sites.
- Threats against oneself or others. If you're feeling suicidal or self-harming, please reach out to someone to talk one on one; Mefites have compiled a list of hotlines. Violent fantasies or "someone should assassinate that guy" type comments create problems for the site.
- Making a thread all about another user; attacks on or interrogation of other users, "fuck you"s or namecalling. This includes doxxing or outing of personal information from profile pages or other sites.
- Making a thread all about you. MetaFilter is a large community and discussion threads are for everyone. Please don't make a thread all about your own opinions and ideas at the expense of other people trying to have a discussion.
- Trolling (saying something you don't mean just to rile people up or start a fight) is not okay here. If your behavior is indistinguishable from trolling, your comment may be treated accordingly.
- Dismissive or "Who cares" comments, especially if early in a thread - these add nothing to the discussion. Just skip the thread and find one you're more interested in.
- Comments about moderation. It's fine to ask questions or disagree with moderation, but those discussions happen in MetaTalk (for a public discussion) or sent through the contact form (to discuss privately with the mods), they do not belong in threads on other parts of the site. This includes metadiscussion of flagging, comment deletions, and whether a post should be deleted or not.

Occasionally a comment will be removed which then leaves several comments responding to it just hanging there, responding to nothing. Historically, the responses would usually be removed to avoid confusion for readers and to curtail derails. More recently, due to community feedback the moderators have shifted toward more often leaving such responses in place even if the original comment is deleted, generally with an explanatory note.

Mods use their own discretion and the input of flags or other contacts from members to help guide those decisions. If you have a question about a comment removal, please use the contact form to ask about it. The MetaFilter comment deletion rate is about 1%. Most people never have a comment deleted.
(tags: ) March 5, 2012 - permalink - back to questions

Why was my Ask MetaFilter post/comment removed?

Ask MetaFilter has more strict guidelines than MetaFilter. If an Ask MetaFilter thread is removed, there will be a reason for deletion at the old URL for the question. If you posted a question that disappeared, check your MefiMail for an automated New Post message that includes the URL of the question. Go to that URL and you'll be able to see why the question was deleted.

Ask MetaFilter questions should have a purpose or a problem to be solved. Since members get one AskMe post per week, please do not try to jam multiple questions into a single question, a few related questions in one post are fine.

Common reasons for thread removal are chatfilter questions, open-ended hypothetical questions, rants posing as questions, questions asking how to do things that are illegal or borderline illegal, questions about suicide, questions about how to get revenge, questions asking for detailed personal/private information, reader poll/survey-type questions, requests for favors or soliciting interviewees, "why does X suck/not suck?" questions, and nonsense questions. Please do not Ask MetaFilter to do your homework for you. If you are feeling suicidal, please seek in-person help. MetaFilter has compiled a list of resources to assist you.

Ask MetaFilter comments should address the main question being asked. Common reasons for comment removal are wisecracks, derailing/ranting/axegrinding, picking a fight with or heavy chastising of the question asker, debating/chat among commenters, single word posts (yes, no, DTMFA &c.) and other non-answers that should probably be brought to MetaTalk. While it's okay to ask follow-up questions to the original asker, piggybacking questions [asking your own related question within someone else's AskMe] will often be removed.
(tags: ) September 10, 2006 - permalink - back to questions