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The past 20 posts to MetaTalk


Disposable YouTube playlists from recommendation threads

Sat, 25 Mar 2017 06:07:57 GMT

The other day I recommended some songs on an AskMeFi thread and, after some fiddling, I compiled almost all the links in two disposable YouTube playlists. Today, while catching up on a year of podcasts, I noticed that in Best of the Web Ep. 112 they talked about this exact issue and the partial solution that exists on Labs. I figured I should share my notes with the rest of the class to figure out how to improve on this long-sought question.

First of all, I must say that this my solution is the very definition of a bodge. It does the job but it's inelegant, not optimized and prone to breaking if YouTube changes one thing. Here's how I did it, hoping you'll help me reach a better solution.

Summary: Get all the youtube links from the thread. Get all the youtube video IDs (either from a URL, or a shortened URL. String these IDs together with a comma and put them in a special URL to create an untitled YouTube playlist that works even if you're not signed in, with the caveat that it holds only up to 50 videos per playlist.


  1. The setup: Notepad++ and pretty much any browser (and a very rudimentary understanding of regular expressions)

  2. Get the source code for the thread (Ctrl + U on Chrome). Paste on new document on Notepad++

  3. Pop up Search and replace
    Ctrl + H
    and check "Regular expression" and ". matches newline" options

  4. Strip all href's from "a" tags. Search
    .*? and replace with 

  5. Manually Look for the last youtube link and delete everything after it

  6. Get all the or links and list them. Search for
    and replace with
    (I suspect this step is unnecessary with proper regex skills, but I did it anyway to make sure I wasn't skipping any links)

  7. Get only the video IDs (which on youtube are 11 alphanumeric characters with "-" and "_" added. Search for
    and replace with

  8. Get rid of all timestamps, if any (they are in the t= format), join lines (in updated Notepad++ versions, select all and use Ctrl + J or go to Edit → Line operations → Join lines) and eliminate spaces. You should have a single line of IDs divided only by a comma. If there are more than 50 IDs, you should divide them in chunks of up to 50 for the next part to work

  9. In your browser, type
    and paste all your IDs at the end of the URL so you get
    and press enter

  10. You should get a new untitled playlist containing all the videos specified. This apparently works even if you're not signed in. Enjoy!

As I said, this is a very inelegant workaround, but I'm sure it's something more people could benefit from. It would be nice to have some sort of auto-playlist for these threads the way does for reddit threads, but I don't think it's a high priority request for a feature.

Help me improve this solution, please? (and for those who didn't know about this, enjoy!)

I emailed the admins and was told this was the appropriate place for this question. Please don't bite me

State of MetaFilter, 2017

Wed, 22 Mar 2017 15:26:22 GMT

Heya, folks, it's time (and then some!) for a State of MetaFilter post. I want to give everybody an update on how the site is doing financially, and catch y'all up on the major goings-on in both the business and community aspects of MetaFilter in the time since the last State of MeFi post. The very short version: it's been a weird couple years out there in the world; we've hired a couple staff and wished pb well; and things are financially pretty stable, thanks in significant part to the ongoing generosity of the MetaFilter community whose contributions continue to represent a vital chunk of the site's operating revenue. But come on inside for a much less short version!~~ About supporting the site ~~ 1. Here's MetaFilter funding page if you want to contribute. Thank you; I can't say enough how fundamental this has been to the site's ability to function. 2. Stripe and PayPal We continue to support both Stripe and Paypal, for both one-time and recurring payments. Using either is totally fine, as best fits your preference. Stripe is a newer payment processing service that allows us a little more flexibility in how we handle payments, including support for quarterly and yearly recurring payments. It doesn't require you to set up an account. We've built a basic set of payment options on the funding page in addition to the existing PayPal options; if you have a specific funding setup you'd like to use that isn't there, you're welcome to contact us directly about setting up a custom plan. Note that the Stripe options are only available to logged-in members. 3. Don't forget to update your credit card info Recurring donations will stop recurring if your card data on file with PayPal or Stripe expires; if you're doing the new card shuffle when your bank updates your card, don't forget to update that info on PayPal or drop us a line for Stripe contributions. If you get a confusing message from PayPal about a card/contribution cancellation, that's what's up—we promise we're not cancelling your payment on you. 4. Help Mefi through Amazon shopping If you'd like to support Metafilter a little bit more in an indirect way, you can be sure to do any shopping you do on Amazon by reaching the site through MetaFilter's amazon affiliate link, which you can always find on the funding page as well. A significant amount of Metafilter's monthly revenue comes from Amazon affiliate income, based on the site replacing/inserting our code in most of the Amazon links people post, but this is another way to try and help Mefi out with revenue while doing something you were already doing anyway. And if you ever have questions about payment processing or related things, please feel free to drop us a line at the contact form and we'll be happy to help. ~~ What's happened since the last update ~~ Well, it's been a hell of a stretch since summer of 2015, in big and small ways. Heartening to me is the fact that the MetaFilter community itself has persisted through local events like staffing changes and mefite deaths, and through the weight brought on our community by external events on the internet at large and in world politics. It'd take far too much time and space to cover everything, but I'll talk about some of the major points. - Financial stability: We have continued to be in stable financial shape for a while now; the online ad market remains a bit slippery and uncertain and tends to fluctuate periodically, but there have been no sustained downturns and the combination of revenue streams we depend on—primarily ad/affiliate revenue, buffered by the generous ongoing financial support of community members—has stayed reliable vs. our operating expenses. We've been able to continue to maintain, and slowly build, savings to insure the site and our staff against an immediate crisis in the case of any major financial setback. We'll have to continue to look at where the online ad market is going and make adjustments over time, and I'll talk with the site about that stuff as it comes along, but for the momen[...]

Closing Your Community Right: Jessamyn interviewed

Tue, 21 Mar 2017 14:58:52 GMT

A podcast where Jessamyn is interviewed by Patrick O'Keefe about the experiences around an online community (mlkshk) closing down and what happens afterwards. There is much on moderating, membership, community issues and service shuttering procedures within, as well as discussion of death/the passing of people, how this impacts on online communities and how moderators and community members deal with it. The page contains many MetaFilter-related links and a link to the transcript.

A Metafilter Sighting in the Wild

Mon, 20 Mar 2017 05:52:34 GMT

Playing with Fire is your basic best-friends-since-childhood-fall-in-love m/m romance, but what makes it special is that it features the protagonists performing Jingle Rock Bell—yes, Metafilter's own special Christmas song--at a karaoke party.

Playing with Fire is part of a series written by Avery Cockburn which is centered around an FLGBTQC football team in Glasgow. Cockburn is a pretty good writer, and this would not be a bad introduction to the world of m/m romance and its well-loved (and well-worn) tropes. Can Robert, somewhat famous as the only straight cisgendered man on the team, admit his long-simmering bisexuality? Can Liam let himself love Robert even though his last serious lover left him for a women, leaving him distrustful of bisexuals? Can they overcome their hesitation and fear to find true love?

Of course they can. It's that kind of book. And on the way to their happily ever after: Karaoke Night, during the holiday season. Jingle Rock On, ye wee lads.

MeFi post I can't find - sci-fi audioplay by one man in 70's or 80's

Mon, 20 Mar 2017 02:21:59 GMT

I've given up on trying to Google this. Can anyone link me to that MeFi post about a science-fiction audioplay made by one guy in the 70's or 80's? The post was also about it being re-released.

Alexa, play Mefi* music

Sun, 19 Mar 2017 18:09:28 GMT

While bemoaning the fact that there's not an Amazon playlist or station that scratches my itch for eclectic music, it dawned on me that Mefi Music hits that particular sweet spot for me. Which led me to wonder about the feasibility of integrating Alexa with Mefi music. It seems it's been done for iPhone using the RSS feed, so I'm assuming doing something for Alexa is not totally out of the question. I'm curious as to what people think of the idea in general, and also any thoughts on technical implementation.

I'd figure if anyone was interested in making such an app, this discussion could be useful resource for them.

*Shudders as a potential new front opens on the pronunciation wars

Metafilter not working on laptop!

Sun, 19 Mar 2017 17:53:44 GMT

Metafilter will not work on my laptop!

When I go to post or leave a comment in Firefox I get a "Connection was reset" page. Chrome gives me "the page isn't working" and I get something similar in whatever Microsoft's browser is called. I've cleared my cache and cookies, logged out and back in. I can't leave favorites either, when I hit the button it just says "adding" forever. I'm on Windows 10, it and my browsers are all up to date. Avast free antivirus. Everything works fine on my tablet. Contacted the mods and they suggested a post here (from my tablet of course). Thanks everyone!

Metatalktail Hour: My Hometown

Sat, 18 Mar 2017 23:37:56 GMT

Good Saturday Evening, MetaFilter! This week: What's the coolest unknown thing about your hometown (current or former!) that all visitors should see, or all residents should know?

This week's metatalktail topic comes from moonmilk, who is also curious about where you fantasize about moving to. Remember, they're conversation starters, not conversation limiters, so you can talk about any sociable/personal/sharing thing on your mind -- we're here to kibbitz! Except politics, the bouncers hate politics.

Magical Mefites

Sat, 18 Mar 2017 17:39:51 GMT

In a recent post discussing witches and feminism/political activism I received a few emails of interest about getting in touch with other magical mefites. I made a forum for us!

The catch: I have no idea what I'm doing making a forum. If anyone would like to help with development and implementation, let me know. I have made us an empty forum but while I used to know a bit of html I have forgotten all of it apparently.

My current ideas for topic section will include things like-earth based spirituality, exploring the goddess, divine feminine across religions and spiritual belief, action related to human rights and environmental causes, animism in practice, sharing personal experiences and growth, herbology, general group actions to create good whether spiritual or practical (and discussions of the ethics and details and difficulties of doing so), and basically whatever anyone interested in this would like to see. I feel like indigenous groups are doing what they can to awaken those with a colonial mindset and those of us from cultures who have forgotten can do our part to help ourselves awaken and remember.

I am flexible about what this space is so those interested can help define what this is. Anyone with an interests relating to compassion, human rights, history of magic (for which I imagine mefites would have especially interesting reading recommendations), goddess spirituality and feminism, earth wellness, indigenous rights and support and more is welcome. Atheists with an interest are welcome, but only if you have a sincere interest and aren't arriving to proselytize and debate. Many paths up the mountain. I myself am agnostic about my own woo but know that woo is permitted and we're not being mean to each other or debating about our various weird woos on this board. It's not really a debate space. It's a kind space. I can't even begin to promise the board I would make will be perfect for everyone but I would love to see people create their own nooks if it inspires them to see more clearly exactly what they want. Because this is a space to allow woman and earth based spirituality thrive where patriarchy and patriarchal religions have suppressed it, criticism and discussion of these harms would be ok so far as I'm concerned. And yes I personally would have stricter policies on people with dominant narratives even atheism using this space to pick apart earth based and feminine oriented spiritual practice. (AND YES I know the entire word and concept of female, feminine, etc can be debated and picked apart. If members feel this is useful we can have a space for that, but I hope we can also give each other some slack seeing as that associated with feminine has been so mistreated being able to talk positively about traits associated with the word seems worthwhile.)

Those interested let me know a bit about yourself and what you'd like to see/be part of! Memail for the forum address and if you want to be an administrator and help make it pretty and functional let me know. You don't have to out yourself in the comments here to join... :)

We truly are stronger together. I think in general pagans and witches can have a hard time forming compassionate oriented groups as we are often strong willed and that makes us awesome but also difficult lol. But I believe we can do this, weave harmony and peace and equality based spirituality in our lives and the world, even though it can be hard. Not the empty peace of passive submission but the vibrant active peace of true justice and equality.

An explicit license for the infodump?

Fri, 17 Mar 2017 20:54:38 GMT

My impression is that all of the infodump data is in the public domain. Is that license explicitly stated anywhere? And, if it is stated somewhere, could we get that statement reprinted on the infodump's home page and possibly bundled with the zipped downloads. It'd be nice to have some legalese posted somewhere so that no one feels at risk of getting into trouble.

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Fri, 17 Mar 2017 15:00:11 GMT

How are you celebrating? Are you reading about Irish history? Maybe some James Joyce? Or maybe you're having a nice stout craft beer. Just make sure it's poured correctly. Share how you are celebrating St. Patrick's Day or how you are not. And remember to stay safe.

Let's follow each other on Pocket

Wed, 15 Mar 2017 17:46:12 GMT

Surely, there are many MeFites on Pocket. Their Friends function is the closest thing I've found to the social features on the dearly departed Google Reader Let's exchange usernames and become friends.

My profile is at this link.

If there's enough interest, perhaps we can add Pocket profiles to the Social page on the wiki.

Thanks to kitteh and to Metafilter

Wed, 15 Mar 2017 00:33:12 GMT

I'm writing to give a shoutout to kitteh's post from January about homelessness and menstruation.

I'm a guy in my 30s, and I had never once considered this issue before. I'm also a first-year in an MSW program who is completing a field placement at a health clinic for the homeless in Chicago that has not had supplies to provide to our participants, so kitteh's post gave me a lot to think about.

Since seeing that post I've been working on finding a way to help fix this, and I'm excited to say that today our clinic partnered with another great non-profit that works on collecting donated products and was looking for a partner to help with distribution. My clinic sees over 4000 women and trans men every year, and we're officially on the road to providing them with free tampons, pads, and liners when they need them.

I won't link to fundraising, but I wanted to share my news because I'm excited for what this means for our population, and because I'm so grateful for the Metafilter community and all that I've learned here over the years. Kitteh, I want you to know that you've made a difference in my life and in the lives of a lot of Chicagoans.

March Madness

Mon, 13 Mar 2017 16:46:43 GMT

Is anyone planning to do a MeFi March Madness pool? I'd like to participate (using my top-secret system, of course), but, with a sick three-month-old baby, I'd rather not be the admin. Anyone else interested?

Seeking FPP about a photographer who chronicled her weight loss online.

Sun, 12 Mar 2017 05:01:31 GMT

I remember a post here on MetaFilter about a photographer who decided to lose weight and, as the artist she is, decided to chronicle her weight loss with an online journal, telling the story in words and in black and white images of her body as she lost weight. She was unaware at the start of her project that she would end up having folds and flaps of skin but she found out pretty rapidly, and regardless that it was painful for her to discover what she did, she kept the journal ongoing.

Does this ring a bell for anyone? Prompted for me by the current FPP about Paul Mason (Losing It All)

Metatalktail Hour: Parental Shame

Sun, 12 Mar 2017 00:11:49 GMT

Good Saturday Evening, MetaFilter! In honor of the Korea expert on the BBC and his adorable children, what is the worst way you ever embarrassed your parents, or your children ever embarrassed you? In the alternative, what's the most interesting thing that happened to you this week?

Remember, they're conversation starters, not conversation limiters, so you can talk about any sociable/personal/sharing thing on your mind -- we're here to kibbitz! Except politics, the bouncers hate politics.

If you have ideas for Metatalktail conversation starters for future weeks, memail or e-mail me, I have a list going. :)

Thank you, MeFites!

Fri, 10 Mar 2017 15:16:18 GMT

I'm an inveterate, invertebrate people-pleaser, from a long line of inveterate, invertebrate people-pleasers. It's almost pathological. When I want to say 'no' to someone, I typically have a panic attack, hint around wanting to give a negative answer, then say 'yes' anyway. I then spend weeks kicking myself for saying 'yes' to them.

But thanks to MeFi, I was able to say no to a guy I'm freelancing for yesterday. And he just accepted it! Blew my mind! I used the old chestnut, "I'm sorry, but that won't be possible" when he wanted to change the way I was submitting my work. I was terrified. Seriously. But I knew I couldn't do what he was asking me to do. So I gave it a shot.

He said it was fine, like I hadn't just flung myself off the edge of a cliff trying to miss a hurdle I couldn't jump over.

And it's all y'all's fault.

Thank you!!

Identifying mods on the blue and the green

Wed, 08 Mar 2017 22:19:43 GMT

Mods are identified as staff on MetaTalk, but not identified as such on AskMe or on the blue. Why is that?

Sorry if this has been addressed before. I understand why you would want to identify a site moderator on MetaTalk. But it is incongruous to me that the mods are not identified as such when performing mod activities on the green and on the blue.

Ideally to me, mods would be identified as such when acting as mods on the blue and green, but would not be identified as mods when making posts or comments on the blue or green as site members. That's probably a lot of work for little gain though.

I'm only posting this publicly because I imagine other site members have wondered the same thing.

Created a GM/TM userscript to display tags on main pages

Wed, 08 Mar 2017 19:41:53 GMT

I created a GreaseMonkey/TamperMonkey userscript to show post tags on main pages. Check the page out for a screenshot of what I'm talking about.

The script checks a page for multiple posts; it doesn't run on a page that doesn't contain something like that. I tested against (a) the various sub-tabs above and (b) both Chrome and Firefox.

(This doesn't work on podcast.metafilter or bestof.metafilter because Reasons™.)

In the distant future, I'll expand it a Whole Lot to add filtering based on tags, so that you too can hide posts containing the tag [whatever] from your pages.

MeFi Fantasy Baseball 2017!!!!!

Wed, 08 Mar 2017 01:23:37 GMT

The MetaFilter Fantasy Baseball League is organizing for its 12th season.

This is a friendly league with a lot of veterans that is also being welcoming to newcomers. We'll be running the league through Yahoo again, if you want to join the link is at the bottom of my MeFi profile.