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What Is A Bad Post

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A bad post is one which breaches the guidelines. It can take the form of a Self Link, a press release (which would be better off as a Text Ad) or a troll. Failure to follow the guidelines may result in Deleted Threads. Consistent bad behaviour may even result in your posting rights being revoked, or your account banned.

A facile answer to this question would be to say, "It's the opposite to What Is A Good Post"; which you should also read, of course.

Matt Haughey comments briefly about one here, another example can be found here.

Some interesting points: bad posts can generate a lot of discussion and comments. Good posts can have almost no comments. The moral of the story is that you shouldn't judge whether your (or any) post is good or bad based on the number of comments. Likewise, the quality of comments is often independent of the quality of post; a bad post can be rescued by good comments, and a good post can be ruined by bad comments. That's what life is like in an online community.

Sometimes newcomers are rebuked for linking to websites that are assumed to be ones everybody reads, are old hat, or cheap knock-offs of MeFi and not considered part of What Is A Good Post. The sites that seem to have this effect are The Onion, Salon, Slashdot, Goatse, and Fark and Wired, among others.

Specifically, posting a link to goatse or any similar site will get you banned. Posting sites that are not safe for work should be prefaced with a NSFW. If you post something that is not safe for work without this tag, you will get complaints and may be suspended or banned. People read this site from work so please respect that.

Likewise, there are topics that are regularly discussed (and some might say beaten to death) on MetaFilter. This doesn't mean that you shouldn't post stories about them if you feel that the linked page is particularly interesting and adds something new, but it does mean that if it's yet another opinion piece that follows a recent post on the same topic, you should think hard about whether it's suitable. These topics include:

  • Israel/Palestine
  • Why no-one (apparently) likes the United States
  • SUVs, car/bike accidents
  • Obesity, unsafe body "trends" masquerading as fashion
  • Richard Dawkins or hay guyz religion is good/bad, m i rite?
  • Circumcision, FGM
  • Tasers or other forms of police brutality
  • Horrible people behaving badly
  • Sign my petition/fund my kickstarter issue posts

and more...