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Tell PG: Thank you for removing the political stories
42 points by zeteo on Feb 10, 2011 | hide | past | web | favorite | 10 comments
For anyone wishing to discuss these events, they are on the front page at both digg.com and reddit.com, not to mention the comments section at countless mainstream news sites. To quote the HN guidelines:

"If they'd cover it on TV news, it's probably off-topic."


It's because HN doesn't have to show pgview growth to investors or sell it to advertisers that they're able to make a decision like this that ultimately improves the quality of the site (probably at the expense of drives of traffic)

I'd even say hopefully at the expense of driving up traffic.


As long as there's not a tech angle, I'm happy to see them off the site. Events like what's going on in Egypt are important, but it's not why I come here.

Me neither, but you get a better class of conversation here than elsewhere. I don't object to political stories as long as they are (a) rare and (b) important ones.

Everyone thinks their personal pet political viewpoint, cause, issue, or ill-informed rant is important.

If you allow some 'important' off-topic posts, you need to either have an externally-imposed decision on what's important (ie, a moderator who uses their idea of 'important'), or accept that you're going to see a stream of 'important' posts that you don't care about.

As a community maintainer and moderator in the past, it's an issue I've struggled to get people to understand, as they all assumed that their pet issue was important enough that it didn't matter it was off-topic.

> Everyone thinks their personal pet political viewpoint, cause, issue, or ill-informed rant is important.

It's not points-of-view that I'm describing as important, it's certain news stories.

Does anyone doubt that the Egyptian revolution is a very important story in world affairs?

I was a regular on Reddit until the fall of '08, when the politics started in earnest. Then the whole thing tumbled downwards. There's no faster way to turn a group of otherwise intelligent and reasonable people into a band of monkeys flinging poo at each other.


Politics is a perfect storm of signaling where real-world consequences are almost completely divorced from argumentation. It's the opposite of hacking and startups, where assumptions and opinions are tested in the real world constantly, and feedback is quick and unambiguous.

That's the thing, I don't think there needs to be a tech angle, but it does need to be interesting. For example, I posted a non-tech article about the world's most liberal prison, a prison island in Norway with a supermarket and cafeteria (http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2209884) because I thought it was an interesting and unique read others are unlikely to find.

Of course, upvotes will tell as to whether this is a valid story.

See, I get jaded about this place and then this happens.

<3 I'll never leave you HN <3

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