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On MetaFilter Being Penalized By Google 108

Posted by timothy
from the filtration-nation dept.
Paul Fernhout (109597) writes "MetaFilter recently announced layoffs due to a decline in ad revenue that started with a mysterious 40% drop in traffic from Google on November 17, 2012, and which never recovered. Danny Sullivan at SearchEngineLand explores in detail how MetaFilter 'serves as a poster child of problems with Google's penalty process, despite all the advances Google has made over the years.' Caitlin Dewey at the Washington Post puts it more bluntly: 'That may be the most striking, prescient takeaway from the whole MetaFilter episode: the extent to which the modern Web does not incentivize quality.'"
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On MetaFilter Being Penalized By Google

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 23, 2014 @07:25PM (#47079885)

    If you depend that heavily on ad revenue from Google then you really need to re-think your business model

    • by TWX (665546) on Friday May 23, 2014 @07:32PM (#47079947)
      It's worse actually. They're dependent on Google not only for ad revenue, but for simple exposure.

      Honestly I never knew what metafilter was for. I've been on the Internet since 1994 (god, 20 years!) and metafilter never really caught my eye as knowing what they were for. If their goal was to be a front-door for the Internet, an aggregator of cool stuff, I have plenty of other sites to do that through that each seem to do a good job. If their job was to be a question-and-answer forum, I've got several forums for specific topics that I can visit and get better answers, and where if I give answers, they're both appreciated and discussed at length (sometimes ad-nauseum) so that they stay relevant.

      If metafilter broke their somewhat parasitic arrangement with an entity that isn't forced to send them traffic, then I don't really know what to say to them.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        I certainly agree. I have also been on the internet for a VERY long time, and have never heard of them or used them.

        It seems the real problem for their declining revenue is that they simply are failing to provide anything innovative or interesting to a large amount of people.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          I heard of them in about 1998 or so. They had a neat feature where you could spy on other people's search requests and go to their results. It introduced me to some new things, porn included. They also have a reddit-like forum (in fact, reddit is kind of a mashup of Metafilter, Digg, and 4chan) that I used around 2001-02. Otherwise, I've found Metafilter completely irrelevant.

      • by wvmarle (1070040) on Friday May 23, 2014 @08:10PM (#47080199)

        Agreed.

        I'm also one of those oldies, and never heard of that particular site. However I'm on Slashdot from not too long after the beginning (many years of just reading - not commenting) - my friends told me about this site over a beer in the students' club. Good old days.

        To come back to Slashdot and Google: I'm using Google quite extensively to search for all kinds of topics, including tech related ones. I don't recall having ever seen a link to a Slashdot article appear in Google, not even a link to a comment (which is of course where the real interesting bits can be found), probably as Slashdot doesn't produce any new content, they just aggregate what they find elsewhere. If Metafilter is indeed also just an aggregator, good that Google skips their links and instead provides the links to the actual content instead.

        • I agree (Score:4, Informative)

          by justthinkit (954982) <floyd@just-think-it.com> on Friday May 23, 2014 @08:43PM (#47080397) Homepage Journal
          I agree. I also research extensively with Google and have never seen Slashdot articles. But I disagree with Google's choice on this.

          Maybe it is more a matter of Google drowning in information and have no practical way of filtering it all out.

          To that end, Google seems to love Expert Exchange. I don't understand that. Seems like they make choices, and stick to them, at least for a while.

          Search is a truly large space. I doubt I could manage it any better. I never tire of hitting enter and having a page of results before I have time to reach for the mouse. I'll cut them some slack on this one.
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward
        It's like Slashdot, but instead of targeting the male nerd audience, it caters to unstable females.
        • by drinkypoo (153816)

          It's like Slashdot, but instead of targeting the male nerd audience, it caters to unstable females.

          How ironic, that really sounds like something slashdotters would want to know about. Stealth website! No wonder we didn't hear about it, the denizens didn't want us to.

      • by twilight30 (84644) on Friday May 23, 2014 @08:26PM (#47080287) Homepage

        That's interesting. The case could be made that MetaFilter is to liberal/progressive politics what Slashdot is to tech -- it fosters lively, informed discussions on any number of topics. I tend to lurk on both sites these days, but I will say that the active moderation over there has generally made a _much_ more civilised site than anything Slashdot could claim nowadays.

        Note: I am specifically not really talking about MeTa's cash cow, the Ask MeFi section, but rather the main site itself.

      • by Wikipedia (928774)
        It's a great site. I miss seeing it in the search results. It's like Yahoo Answers except the people are much more intelligent, the creme de la creme of the web. I wish Google had a way of "voting up" websites such as metafilter in my personalized results.
      • It's pretty obvious what it is. It's a message board with more of a blog format. It did have a lot of shit but it was also useful which means it was no different from any other internet community.
  • by HangingChad (677530) on Friday May 23, 2014 @07:47PM (#47080059) Homepage

    We lost our ad account when Google accused us of hosting porn. The "porn" they pointed out were links to fairly vanilla pictures posted by some of our long-time forum members. We weren't even hosting it. I appealed, they pointed out two more links like that one. Links.

    I refused to remove content that really wasn't that offensive, posted by members and complied with our forum rules. It did open my eyes to how Google could be a giant, inflexible jackass.

    • by MTO_B. (814477) on Friday May 23, 2014 @07:56PM (#47080119) Homepage
      This happened to me for articles about breast cancer. Removed them all and never again talk about breast cancer prevention as I don't want to lose my ad account.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by _merlin (160982)

        Sorry to have to break this to you, but you're a total sell-out. You'd rather remove serious content and treat a topic as taboo than lose your Google ads? Shame on you!

        • by MTO_B. (814477) on Saturday May 24, 2014 @07:31AM (#47082321) Homepage
          I cant live without money, I live with what I earn from AdSense. Yes, I'm too dependent on Google, but it's how it is.
          • by _merlin (160982)

            Well I'm really glad I actually get paid to produce stuff, and don't have to rely on advertising revenue.

            • by jfengel (409917)

              He *is* producing stuff. It's just stuff that people want to read, rather than physical stuff. Advertising is how he gets paid to produce it, simply because it's awkward to charge $.0001 directly to the reader for a page-view. The advertising, in turn, is intended to draw people to other things that they might want to buy, usually stuff that comes in bigger units and so is easier to pay for with money.

              Very little of it is necessary. The bare necessities were a problem solved long ago, and require the effort

            • by N1AK (864906)
              Do you produce stuff that you think you should completely regardless of whether the person who pays you wants you to or not? If not, you're just as much of a sell out as he is; you just have the dubious distinction of being a hypocrite as well.
    • by wiredlogic (135348) on Friday May 23, 2014 @08:17PM (#47080231)

      That's pretty hypocritical considering how much hardcore porn is indexed by Google image search.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by mechtech256 (2617089)

        This is regarding ad accounts, not search results or indexing.

        • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Friday May 23, 2014 @10:14PM (#47080863)

          For various (often stupid) reasons most brands don't want to be associated with "porn" even in a very passing way. So advertisers will pull their ads if you have what they deem to be porn.

          Fark had this problem. They used to run stories now and again with a "boobies" or "wieners" tag to denote photos/videos of either women or men respectively that others might find attractive and want to look at. They were always clearly marked, and flagged NSFW if that was an issue. It wasn't a large part of the content

          However advertisers kept complaining and pulling ads, and so Fark spun that content off in to a separate site. It was that, or watch ad revenue dry up.

          This sort of thing is also why ads on places like the Pirate Bay and such tend to be so scummy: Most brands aren't willing to associate with those sites so they have to take whatever they can get.

          • For various (often stupid) reasons most brands don't want to be associated with "porn" even in a very passing way. So advertisers will pull their ads if you have what they deem to be porn.

            Excellent point. So don't just blame Google when it fails you. Blame your crappy business model that puts too many eggs in too few baskets, and the advertisers that account for Google's revenue. Google can be an incredible resource and a traffic and revenue generator for you, but you can't just do whatever you want, refuse to adapt, and expect to cash in forever.

            • by tlhIngan (30335)

              For various (often stupid) reasons most brands don't want to be associated with "porn" even in a very passing way. So advertisers will pull their ads if you have what they deem to be porn.

              Excellent point. So don't just blame Google when it fails you. Blame your crappy business model that puts too many eggs in too few baskets, and the advertisers that account for Google's revenue. Google can be an incredible resource and a traffic and revenue generator for you, but you can't just do whatever you want, refuse

        • by sjames (1099)

          Sure, but it is odd for Google to happily show results for porn (with ads) but get bent out of shape if a site (other than google's search) has links to porn.

    • On Youtube, I have found many clips of Janet Jackson having her top ripped off during that Super Bowl halftime show. Her breast is not censored in these clips. Some of these clips even show ads. Why haven't they been removed from Youtube, and, in some cases, Google is even paying the uploader ad revenue? I'm curious about this because there's a video I'd like to upload that contains a tiny bit of nudity, but then I don't want to risk my account. Confusing, since you can see videos showing nudity and Go
  • no need for Q&A sites on the internet once google starts one up

    • by jfengel (409917)

      G+ isn't a Q&A site, and it's a really poor substitute for one since its whole point is just to link you up with your social circle. Q&A sites are designed to attract people by interest without having to become socially acquainted (even virtually).

      Google did have a Q&A site, Google Answers, but it never really got going. It's too bad, since they were nearly unique in trying to actually pay for good answers. I'm not sure why it didn't work out, though of course trying to monetize anything has alw

  • 'That may be the most striking, prescient takeaway from the whole MetaFilter episode: the extent to which the modern Web does not incentivize quality.'

    Hey, pick your comeback!

    1) This actually shows how ugly web design loses popularity! [metafilter.com].
    2) It shows you shouldn't depend on Google for exposure!
    3) If you want quality, check out Google scholar [google.com] or a library. The internet is for......entertainment.
    4) People don't incentivize quality. Google merely delivers.

    Or something like that.

  • by QuietLagoon (813062) on Friday May 23, 2014 @07:52PM (#47080095)
    ... that google appears to be the main generator of traffic for some websites. The way to solve the root problem is not to change how google does or does not work, but to bring other traffic generators on board.

    .
    A company that relies upon one customer for a great majority of its sales will always be beholden to that customer. That is why companies diversify their customer base.

    Websites should diversify their traffic generators instead of just relying on good ole google to generate traffic for them.

    • by alen (225700)

      so who uses Bing?

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        I have a technical website serving a niche, with 100% content and no adverts. So far this month I have had 10 referrals from Bing, 130 from the most relevant Wikipedia page and 2200 from Google.

        It's not so much the worldwide web these days as the Googleverse.

        Namgge

        • I have a technical website serving a niche, with 100% content and no adverts. So far this month I have had 10 referrals from Bing, 130 from the most relevant Wikipedia page and 2200 from Google.

          It's not so much the worldwide web these days as the Googleverse.

          ---sigh---

          I see similar numbers for my website also, however, you are seeing much more bing activity than I see.

      • by DogDude (805747) on Friday May 23, 2014 @09:31PM (#47080669) Homepage
        That's irrelevant. ANY business that relies solely on another unaffiliated business is doomed to fail, eventually. That's Business 101 and has been true across every industry, since the birth of capitalism.
        • by Alef (605149)
          Isn't the problem that smaller or medium sized web sites don't really have any option? Google is the "start menu" of the Internet for a whole lot of people, so any site that isn't the scale of Facebook or Twitter will be affected by how Google decides to rank them, whether they like it or not.
      • by gman003 (1693318)

        I actually do. Due to what I assume is some carrier NAT issues, Google detects my entire ISP as possible bots. Every Google search I do requires a CAPTCHA.

        So I use Bing for my searching. I've not really noticed any difference in quality between it and Google.

      • so who uses Bing?

        Old and uneducated people who think Internet Explorer *is* the internet and have always had it set as their default search engine since they bought their current computer and don't realize that there is any alternative. That's it, no one really uses it by choice. I hear it works well for funny cat videos and finding out what time the local pharmacy opens.

        • by thsths (31372)

          Actually Bing is not bad. For many general queries it is just as good as Google. Just with those very specific ones it seems to struggle a bit more than Google.

          The main reason I do not use Bing is that it is just one step away from that ghastly portal called MSN. I neither need reactionary news nor the latest celebrity gossip...

    • by Anrego (830717) *

      Or try to actually build a community / base of regular customers.

      It sounds like they relied on people regularly stumbling onto their site by accident while searching for other things, most of whom probably closed the page and went about their business.

      When I look at sites I frequent: slashdot, cracked, newegg... I don't remember the last time any of these showed up in a google search. At some point I stumbled into them or was told about them by someone else, and keep coming back on my own volition.

    • by Tom (822)

      Websites should diversify their traffic generators instead of just relying on good ole google to generate traffic for them.

      For many sites, they don't intentionally create or seek out traffic generators, it just happens that Google is the 900lb gorilla and most of your traffic comes through them.

  • If your business relies largely or entirely on another business completely out of your control in order to stay afloat, then it's your fault for not diversifying your business.

    Adapt, or get left behind.

    • by tepples (727027)
      So how should, say, Netflix diversify if it relies largely on Comcast and other huge home broadband ISPs to keep it afloat?
      • Your comparison makes no sense. Netflix depends on their customers having "a" Internet connection, they do not rely on any single company like Metafilter was with Google.
        • When Comcast is the only home broadband provider that doesn't have a 10 GB per month cap in a large part of Netflix's market, "a" Internet connection means Comcast. And MetaFilter relies on "a" general web search engine.
          • If Comcast blocked Netflix, the first thing to happen would be consumer outrage. The second would be that Netflix would take a noticeable hit, but continue to survive from the rest of their subscribers from other ISPs/countries. I highly doubt Comcast users make up the same presentage of Netflix subscribers as Google users make up Metafilter visitors.
            • by PRMan (959735)
              Until they merge with Time Warner. Then we can get carrier disputes like they have done with CBS and the new Lakers and Dodgers Channels.
    • If your business relies largely or entirely on another business completely out of your control in order to stay afloat, then it's your fault for not diversifying your business.

      Adapt, or get left behind.

      Isn't this why Firefox decided they were going to start showing ads in new tabs?

  • i guess meta-filter got....meta-filtered.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 23, 2014 @08:36PM (#47080349)

    $haw$hank
    #truvadawhore
    "Everyone On Wall Street Is A Dick."
    Hello My Sweaty Pink Parts
    Ronald McDonald gets reincarnated
    You are disgusting.

    I've never had a particularly strong desire to browse metafilter and my visit today has confirmed that no mistakes were made. These are actually just a few of the titles listed today, but probably some of the better ones for demonstration purposes. It just strikes me that the tone that is set with these types of choices just doesn't represent the articles. In particular, the shawshank piece was a very light fluffy piece of writing with no real substance. However, I was expecting something a bit more impressive or even just a biased opinion piece. These types of choices coupled with a site design that makes slashdot look damn near futurisitic don't feel like a winnin combination. My first thought was, "Wow, someone was actually get paid to work on this?"

    I can definiately see their depdendence on google as a huge factor. I don't want to go back!

  • Personally, when I search Google for something, I get what I want on the first page of listings, Usually, what I want is the first or second item in the list. Google has gotten really, really good at figuring out what people want.

    And it's not MetaFilter.

    In this case, I think MetaFilter's problems are more related to their own inability to stay relevant, than anything Google did.

    • by PRMan (959735)

      Really? Lately I find Google extremely lacking. I look for stuff that I absolutely know exists and can't find it at all. In fact, I was looking for a MAME ROM where I had the EXACT spelling and Google kept misspelling it and giving me other stuff with no way to get the actual item at all.

      I had to go to Duck Duck Go to get it at all. They're slipping if you ask me.

      • by Sanians (2738917)

        I was looking for a MAME ROM where I had the EXACT spelling and Google kept misspelling it and giving me other stuff with no way to get the actual item at all.

        Google is a complete pain in the ass sometimes. I don't recall exactly what I was searching for, but I was once searching for something about decibels, in which I knew that the content I was looking for would never mention the full word, but only the abbreviation "dB" instead. Google assumed that the "db" in my search query was an abbreviation for "database" and I never could figure out how to get it to stop giving me nothing but results about databases.

        • by Pope (17780)

          There's an option on the results page called Search Tool, and under All Results you can change the filter to Verbatim.

          Obvious, ain't it? :P

          I only found out about that last week because I was bitching about Google's shitty, irrelevant results on another forum.

  • I have seen this ... (Score:4, Informative)

    by kbahey (102895) on Friday May 23, 2014 @10:58PM (#47081039) Homepage

    I have seen this in a few sites I run. One is a business site, another is a special interest with specific demographics, and the third is a blog.

    It all started with Google shuffling their algorithms, with Panda [wikipedia.org] then Pengiun [wikipedia.org].

    I saw traffic drop on all three sites. Some coninciding with Panda, and the other coninciding with Pengiun.

    One site was the top site for certain search terms for many long years. Not anymore. That site saw a 7.5X drop in pageviews per month traffic. Another site saw 3.5X drop, and the third was 2.5X.

    What is weird is that Google de-indexed one site because of "un-natural links". When I contacted them, I asked what the links are, so I can remove them. They never came back with any definitive information, and sent the same template email saying site de-indexed because of un-natural links. It took 3 or 4 tries, and then they reinstated the site back in the index. They never told me what the links are, and never explained why they de-listed the site nor why they reinstated it.

    Another thing of note: some sites no longer show up in Google searches. For example, here in Canada we have a restaurant review site called Restaurantica. It used to show up in the first few searches for restaurants in the area (Southern Ontario). Now, I don't see it at all on the front page. Seems Google decided that Trip Advisor and Urban Spoon are the authoratitive ones for restaurant, and Restaurantica is third class or something.

    I also noticed that the search quality for Google has gone downhill starting in 2011. Really stupid matching of terms, some partial strings even. I've never seen Google's search that bad before.

    They are for sure dumbing things down, a general trend in the industry in the name of "user experience" and such. You see this in Firefox with the dumbed down Australis, which requires Classic Theme Restorer to undo some of the damage.

    Sigh ...

    • Seems more like they're applying internet cafe browser caching to search results. Your search terms sort of resemble a block of 10% or more of searches for terms more or less like what you entered, so here are the most popular results based on what other people were looking for.

    • I also noticed that the search quality for Google has gone downhill starting in 2011. Really stupid matching of terms, some partial strings even. I've never seen Google's search that bad before.

      The decline of Google has directly correlated with the rise of SEO 'experts,' and the spamming of the internet. For a while (I think around 2010) it seemed almost impossible to find something that wasn't on Wikipedia.......

  • The tl;dr on those is, metafilter's users spontaneously decided to start donating, before or after someone ran across an old paypal link, and before metafilter had even asked, 10% of their users had donated. One commenter implies those donations are set up as recurring, i.e. not just voluntary but spontaneous subscription.
    • Thanks for pointing this out (article submitter here). People make points in other comments about MetaFilter's business strategy, varied content, or grousing about the moderation. Your comment instead emphasizes the positive about how how MetaFIlter is one of the longest running online communities and it is trying to sustain itself. One comment I saw on MetaFilter compared these donations to the end of the movie "It's a Wonderful Life".
      http://metatalk.metafilter.com... [metafilter.com]

      I've never been a MetaFilter member. No

  • by tlambert (566799) on Saturday May 24, 2014 @12:58AM (#47081461)

    One common scenario leading to delisting is that you hire an SEO, or an SEO decides to "gift" you their "service", or one of your competitors decides to "gift" you an SEO's "service". It's very hard, as an ordinary business, to know that this is the cause of your problem.

    Complicating this is that the #1 "Wordpress" exploit, for the longest time, was to present the ordinary site *unless* the request was coming from the IP address of a search engine bot. If it was coming from a search engine bot, then you present the regular content of the site, interspersed with link farm data. The Wordpress site doesn't know that it's being link-farmed, since they come in from non-bot IP addresses.

    One of the things Google does internally is make all web traffic from employees desktops originate from the bot IP address; that way if there is variant content based on it recognizing the bot IP, you end up getting the link-farm version of the page, if you, as an employee, visit the site. One of my coworkers discovered that his daughter's school site had been compromised and turned into this type of link farm when he went on from his desk in order to give permission for a field trip, and ended up with a bizarro version of the site in his browser.

    So if you see a sudden drop in traffic, you should probably compare your current site contents to the site contents that are supposed to be there according to your CMS (and if you don't have a CMS - get one so you can make this kind of comparison).

    Another fairly recent phenomenon is that these "stealth" link farms are now being provided as forum postings. If you look at the forum posting link yourself, it's going to show up as whatever content is supposed to be there, but, again, if the bot goes there, it's going to see a link-farm. So if your site has a lot of links to link-farm sites, you're going to appear to be part of the problem (a fair assessment, since you *are* in fact a part of the problem).

    For secondary drive-by stealth link-farm postings, there's really no way to check that the link that you're publishing is a stealth link-farm link. The problem with exposing this information is that an exposed site recruited to this purpose is no longer valuable to the link-farmer, but an unexposed one remains valuable input to the filtering algorithm. So exposing just means that the link-farmer is going to sell the site on the open market to someone else, who will then use the same exploit that the link-farmer used to get it to be a stealth link-farm, only they are going to do other nasty stuff with it, from hosting malware, to actively recruiting the site for a botnet.

    So in reality, it turns out to be a net benefit to everyone for Google to say nothing, particularly if there's no way to understand what exploit was used to establish the stealth link-farm in the first place. Clearly, the site administrator at that site was not competent enough to not be p0wned in the first place, so they're unlikely to be competent enough to fix the problem. If they're using Wordpress in the first place, they probably don't understand the software well enough to understand the exploit in any case. So no programatic verification by Google that a given link might cause you to lose ranking because it links to a link-farm, since link-farmers would just use the service themselves to get the list of their link-farms they need to "recycle" by selling to other people.

    It's a pain in the ass all around, but eventually people will have to start taking their site security a bit more seriously, or find themselves swept into the corner.

  • by reve_etrange (2377702) on Saturday May 24, 2014 @01:16AM (#47081505)

    The bottom line is that Google Search doesn't work very well - at least, not anymore. While it previously supported search expansions which could be taken advantage of by skilled searchers, it's since been focused on quick, lowest-common-denominator responses to the most common questions. As a result, searching for slightly abstract notions is virtually impossible, and some searches which should be straightforward also fail.

    One example of a simple failure: "fireworks today" or "fireworks today san francisco" returned nothing after I chanced to see fireworks the other night. Using the date ("fireworks san francisco may 21 2014"), the only relevant result was a set of Coast Guard and DHS documents describing safety precautions for the event (Giants game). Of course, fireworks games are well publicized outside of interntal government safety documents.

    A more abstract example: try to design a search for articles about names which are or have become insults, such as "Dick."

    • by tlambert (566799)

      The bottom line is that Google Search doesn't work very well - at least, not anymore. While it previously supported search expansions which could be taken advantage of by skilled searchers, it's since been focused on quick, lowest-common-denominator responses to the most common questions. As a result, searching for slightly abstract notions is virtually impossible, and some searches which should be straightforward also fail.

      One example of a simple failure: "fireworks today" or "fireworks today san francisco" returned nothing after I chanced to see fireworks the other night. Using the date ("fireworks san francisco may 21 2014"), the only relevant result was a set of Coast Guard and DHS documents describing safety precautions for the event (Giants game). Of course, fireworks games are well publicized outside of interntal government safety documents.

      Your inability to find the event with your search is because you are going at it lexically backwards from the encapsulating event at which the fireworks were being displayed. The primary key is the event. Historical Google doesn't do well at this, and neither does Bing or any other search engine, which are based on you knowing approximately what you are looking for in the first place.

      If instead you were to look at the people who were likely to be the most upset at an unscheduled pyrotechnic display, you'd

  • by TechnoGrl (322690) on Saturday May 24, 2014 @01:28AM (#47081541)
    It's interesting (and not coincidental) to note that perhaps the very best of the best of the moderators is stepping down and several of the younger newer and frankly less ... ummm ... rock solid of the moderators are remaining.

    I tried MeFi some years back and grew disaffected with the environment. I was initially attracted because of the very heavy attention to keeping things on topic and keeping the crazies away but soon grew disenchanted when it became apparent that the uber-heavy moderation was not applied uniformly. Friends of the site were granted far more leniency than others and the sheer amount of what I am forced to label as misplaced political correctness from the younger staff (staff who are staying on) was outright annoying.

    Google did not kill MetaFilter. Metafilter did that to themselves by allowing disparity in their moderation and substituting hipsteresque faux-concern for alleged dubious subject matter to prevail over true conversation. I have dropped in from time to time to watch the membership decline and have seen the conversation stagnate.

    Buy-bye Mefi (and Boing-Boing) - you were great when you were great but now .... not so much.
    The world moves on.
  • by ebcdic (39948) on Saturday May 24, 2014 @05:39AM (#47082117)

    ... if I'd ever heard of MetaFilter.

    • by _Ludwig (86077)

      You mean you might care enough to post a comment telling us all about how little you care?

  • "the modern Web does not incentivize quality"

    No, people do. And it shows. Enough said.

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