June 02, 2006

The Early Days - the second hundred

Thanks is due to my dear friend, Doctor Millard, for allowing me to participate in this delightful project of his.

The first 100 threads have been covered and quite capably summed up. It would seem, to paraphrase Eliot, that MetaFilter began not with a bang, but a whimper. The next hundred are not entirely different, although a few precious moments stick out - and much like those sappy ceramic dolls of the same name, they're awfully saccharine and
characteristically MetaFilter.

The mathowie posting frenzy continues - he no doubt scoured the Internet for post-worthy material as MeFi still held that coveted "new shiny toy" space in his heart. We see an out-and-out Saab boycott from user #1 in thread 105. Given the relative obscurity of the thread, I wouldn't be surprised if he's gone against his words and rushed out to buy the latest 9-3 sedan from the Swedish auto maker. The cause? Saab seems to have sent spam advertising their latest models, mathowie has taken umbrage. He links to the text of the offending e-mail, which has since been deleted, lost to the waves of time.

And lo! In thread 109, mathowie comments several times on his own FPP within the course of a few days, surely the Internet equivalent stepping up to the microphone and shouting, "IS THIS THING ON? HELLO?"

So many posts in the second hundred come and go without comments, these hastily written FPP's that smack of the "GYOBFW" genre. Cheese sandwiches, billboards about butter, The Real Life, and -- wait, what's this? The first self-link? Why, yes! Yes, it is! And mathowie seems to approve! Why anyone hasn't posted a MeTa callout about the two dozen threads that link to mattdabrowski.com is beyond me. Better late than never, however, and I strongly urge the reader to right this wrong,
post haste.


Thread 140: mathowie links to Fark, and thus a new epoch is born.

Thread 145: mathowie takes joy in anagrams.

Thread 161: A website for instant expert answers to whatever question one needs to pose. The precursor to AskMeFi?

Thread 172: Diaryland.com is launched, both of MeFi's active users (seemingly, only mathowie and tdecius are around) take notice.

Thread 184: Hot damn, it's an absinthe post, complete with an absinthe FAQ!

And so the next hundred trudges along, much like a lonely pedestrian travailing the quiet, dimly-lit streets of the Internet. That pedestrian is MetaFilter -- do you recognize that trademark blue sweater? MeFi is wandering the streets, searching for its sense of purpose and identity, quietly singing Jimi Hendrix tunes to itself and waiting for the dawn.


Blogger Josh Millard said...

Stirring, sir.

6:26 PM  
Blogger antifreez said...

You're very kind to say so.

7:01 PM  
Blogger Josh Millard said...

Yes. I am a kind person. I'll grant you that.

7:23 AM  
Blogger mathowie said...

I kind of winced when I saw that cortex was doing this project because the first six months of the site is pure dreck.

MattDabrowski was the main reason why there's a no self-link rule. At the time I let it go because hey, it was free posts and I was tired of blogging a few links every single day.

There's a point in the late summer of '99 where I started using MeFi as my personal blog, at which point I decided to ditch the effort and actually build my own blog software instead, because I could tell it wasn't going to go well (I think the personal posts are centered around me heading up to SF for the 1999 Fray Day).

3:18 PM  
Blogger mathowie said...

Oh, and regarding thread 140, it actually was the first time I heard of Fark and Drew Curtis emailed me soon after that post thanking me for doing the post.

3:20 PM  
Blogger Josh Millard said...

Don't worry, Matt, we'll be out of the first few months soon enough. I'll try not to dredge up too many embarassing details, but a good canvassing of just how the site got its sealegs seems like the proper start for things.

And just think—had you chosen to admonish Drew Curtis instead of encourage him, the whole face of fratnet could have been changed. Or not, maybe. Still.

3:38 PM  

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