Moderators have access to your sign-up information and other information, such as your IP address. That information may be used for site purposes (such as checking out potential spammers), but it is kept strictly private from other members and the wider internet. This means that if you choose not to display your real name, email address or location to other members, moderators will not reveal it. Mods also will not reveal the identity of second (sockpuppet) accounts as linked to your main account if you do not reveal this.
Members are also expected to respect each other's privacy in certain basic ways. Members' profile page information is not visible to search engines and should not be brought over to the rest of MetaFilter. Similarly, copying and pasting MefiMail to any other part of the site without the writer's permission is a bannable offense.
In emergencies--cases where someone has threatened to harm themselves, or if we are contacted by law enforcement--we cannot guarantee user privacy. Likewise, the Anonymous question function in Ask Metafilter is only intended to keep your details anonymous from the MeFi community, not to provide absolute anonymity--see here for details.
Metafilter occasionally allows use of site data for academic study and there is an Infodump available for number crunchers. Users can download a copy of their site activity as a text file (see links at the bottom of your Preferences page).
What is the Infodump? Does Mefi release other data for study?
The Infodump is Mefi's regularly-updated published collection of site statistics. It includes a great deal of information about posts, comments, tags, categories, favorites, and user behavior concerning all of those. The Infodumpster was created and is run by user Combustible Edison Lighthouse. It is a convenient way to run searches on the information from the Infodump.
What do the counts on the Popular Posts or Popular Questions page mean?
The Popular Posts tab on MetaFilter and the Popular Questions tab on Ask MetaFilter show posts and questions that have received the most favorites from members within a specific time period: the last 24 hours, 7 days, 30 days, or all time.
While browsing these pages you can see both the total number of favorites and the number of favorites added within the current set time period. Favorite counts are shown as a text link that says something like [24 favorites (12 in the last 24 hours)]. That means the post has received 12 favorites in the specified time period and 24 favorites total. If a post only has [x favorites] listed, that means all favorites were added within the specified time period. Click the link to see the list of all members who added the post as a favorite and when they added it. (tags: favoritescustomviewsstats ) December 13, 2008 - permalink - back to questions
Can I see which posts or comments have received the most favorites?
Yes. The Popular page displays the posts and comments with the most favorites over the past 7 days. The Favorites tab on both Metafilter and Ask Metafilter's front pages will show you the most popular posts. See here for more details. Bear in mind the "all time" list is limited by when the favorites feature was introduced. (tags: favoritesstats ) December 10, 2012 - permalink - back to questions