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  #1  
Old 04-24-2012, 01:12 PM
TruCelt TruCelt is offline
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Can we Define "Spoiler" Please?

In this week's "House" thread there is a poster complaining about being "Spoiled" because somebody mentions what was shown in the preview for next week. The publicly shown on television, planned and approved by the director, producers, etc of the show, preview.

Now, I acknowledge that there is a group of people for whom this stuff matters, for whom it truly ruins the experience, and that I am at the full opposite end of the spectrum. (I'd much rather know what is going to happen so that I can enjoy the artistry of the exposition.)

As the level of bitterness that results is pretty extreme, and as there is certainly a field of grey within which to make claims of spoiler-ing (spoilage?); I think the board might benefit from an accepted definition.

I am probably the wrong person to try and define what that should be, but I think it should include the statement that trailers, previews and scenes widely shown in commercials or other promotional materials on the public airwaves are free game.
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  #2  
Old 04-24-2012, 01:28 PM
Joey P Joey P is online now
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IMO, anything that's aired before the next episode is fair game to be discussed. I feel that once the previews have aired that should be allowed to be discussed and speculating what's going to happen in next week's show (not just in House, but in general) should be allowed. That includes things like "I see such and and such isn't listed on IMDB for the episode two weeks from now, I bet he's going to die next week"
Hey, nothing's 100% reliable other then the actual show, anything else is just guessing.

Actually, I take that back, I can see looking up who's credited in future episodes, 'inside info' that you find on the internet, "I heard from a guy who claims to work on the show" etc being a bit of a gray area that may or may not be spoilered, but IMHO, previews don't need to be. I consider them part of this week's show.

Now, I can understand where Nunzio was coming from. House is usually pretty straight forward about their previews. What we saw is probably more or less what's going to happen...but it didn't really ruin much and talking/speculating about it...no, I take that back it could spoil things.
OTOH, there are shows like Soprano's where the previews where soooo misleading they weren't even worth watching. It was just stupid how bad they were and yet people would still freak out if you mentioned them. My favorite was when they showed two guys kneeling down and Christopher shooting them. Then when we saw the episode it was two different scenes. Chris was shooting at the ground because he was mad about something. Come to think about it, you almost have to wonder if they purposely filmed that scene just so they could create the misleading preview where it looked like he was killing someone 'execution style.'
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Old 04-24-2012, 01:37 PM
Joey P Joey P is online now
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Also, part of the problem is that different shows are all going to be a little different and then there's the whole 'you can't please everyone' thing.
If we wanted to create a rule, I'd say "Anything that's been aired on national TV* up to the point of the next episode starting is fair game as is any speculation based on it"

I get sick of people jumping into the middle of a thread to say "OMG that was in the commercial for next week, you can't talk about that" Well ya know what, I'm sick of trying to keep it all straight. If you are that concerned about being spoiled for next week either don't walk into the thread, start your own thread with your own rules (which the mods typically help enforce) or try to start THE thread for that weeks episode with the rules you want. If people like your rules it probably won't be a problem, if they don't, someone else will start their own.

*this could be narrowed down from "national TV" to "that show's network" to prevent discussion based on things that happen (like actors on talk shows) on other channels or broadened to "that show's network and website (important for Breaking Bad).
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Old 04-24-2012, 01:39 PM
cochrane cochrane is offline
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Here's the thread in question, by the way.

http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/...d.php?t=649366

I didn't think either comment about next week's preview spoiled anything. One was just a one-word comment: "jeez." How that spoils anything is beyond me. The other one merely says we get to see some powerhouse acting from Robert Sean Leonard, the lead who plays Wilson. I humbly submit that anyone who is irritated by such innocuous comments as these should simply not enter the thread. As for more specific spoilers, I'm sure most of know how, and, particularly, when, to use spoiler tags.

On review, I agree 100% with Joey P.
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Old 04-24-2012, 01:43 PM
Joey P Joey P is online now
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Oddly, just a few days ago I started a thread on the first season of Ringer and set out pretty much the same rules...
Quote:
I'm allowing spoilers and I don't want to see any boxes in this thread for anything that happened in Season 1. If you haven't seen the show or you're still watching it, proceed at your own caution.
I'm happy to discuss speculations about season 2 based on your own imagination or IRL events* but no S2 episodes should be discussed in this thread...if it should make it that far (the thread and the show).

*By IRL events, I mean, for example (totally made up) "I see that Juliet's mom is signed for two more seasons I guess we'll be seeing a lot more of her" or "I see on IMDB that Henry's name is only on the first three episodes for next year, I wonder if he's moving to Chicago or if someone's going to kill him."
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  #6  
Old 04-24-2012, 01:59 PM
GrandWino GrandWino is offline
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Originally Posted by TruCelt View Post
The publicly shown on television, planned and approved by the director, producers, etc of the show, preview.
I'm in the "previews are not spoilers" camp and I don't see why they can't be discussed openly in a show thread. If that's a problem for someone, they have the option of not taking part in the discussion or finding another place to discuss the show to their liking.

I will point out that the directors/producers actually don't often have a lot of control over what goes into the previews, especially for a network show. The networks' promo department puts them together after the fact and I've heard directors complain about them in the past.
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Old 04-24-2012, 02:08 PM
TruCelt TruCelt is offline
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How about a "lack of effort" rule? If you had to look something up in IMDB, and then draw a reference to a report about an actor's next film location, then that could be "Spoilage" and should be boxed. If, on the other hand, anyone who watched this week's episode would have had this information fall into their lap, it's free game.
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Old 04-24-2012, 03:22 PM
Joey P Joey P is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TruCelt View Post
How about a "lack of effort" rule? If you had to look something up in IMDB, and then draw a reference to a report about an actor's next film location, then that could be "Spoilage" and should be boxed. If, on the other hand, anyone who watched this week's episode would have had this information fall into their lap, it's free game.
What about...But but but, I turn it off before the previews come on, and I go out of my way to not watch the commercials.
I think this is where my 'rule' will help draw the line. It'll keep previews and commercials out of the gray area.

IMO, the other options are that a thread about an episode (or show) may discuss that episode as well as previous ones but nothing else. Nothing drawing from outside sources, no previews, no commercials, no nothing (unboxed)...but then we end up the a thread full of boxed spoilers.

My goal is to be able to create a thread that's readable to someone that's watched the episode. I can't stand reading a thread about something that we've all seen just to have to open a spoiler box in almost every post to see "Well, I'm guessing that he's going to kill her next week and then in Season 7 his wife will find out and...." and what...why is that spoiled and when that gets spoiled everyone who reads it gets confused and spoils the comments about it.


But I'll say it again, if someone doesn't want previews spoiled, start your own thread or be the first to start THE thread and set out your own rules. IME if you say "discussing previews must be done is spoiler boxes" the mods will usually help you keep that under control.
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  #9  
Old 04-24-2012, 03:28 PM
Anaamika Anaamika is offline
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Originally Posted by TruCelt View Post

Now, I acknowledge that there is a group of people for whom this stuff matters, for whom it truly ruins the experience, and that I am at the full opposite end of the spectrum. (I'd much rather know what is going to happen so that I can enjoy the artistry of the exposition.)
I am one of the first group and I say...it's my lookout, barring a few exceptions. If I am into a show and someone makes a thread, I never ever click on it or go into it because I don't want to be spoiled even a little bit. I avoid websites of it and discussions of it like the plague.

The only exceptions I say is people cross-posting spoilers, like if you go into a thread that says "House Episode X" on it and someone is all "Hey that's just like what happened in that Supernatural episode, only in Supernatural they did Y!" That shouldn't happen - don't do that.

The person who complained shouldn't have been reading the thread, IMO. But they did ask very nicely and didn't really seem to be annoyed...in my mind it's not that big of a deal to refrain from discussing the previews (I don't watch those little bastards either, they give way too much away) but as you say it's kind of a gray area.

But I will also say it again, if you don't want to be spoiled (like me) stay away from all threads pertaining to it! Everyone else, just don't put it in the header.
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  #10  
Old 04-24-2012, 03:32 PM
Sleeps With Butterflies Sleeps With Butterflies is offline
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I read a few threads about TV shows but rarely participate. I've seen people flipping out about spoilers before.

I think to consider previews aired by the network to be spoilers is really pushing the limit. Sure you might have someone who turns the program off before the previews and doesn't watch commercials until the next showing (if ever) but that subset of people (IMHO) should not get to run the show for everyone else. If you are really that upset by something someone saw in a preview then it's possible (said 100% without snark) that discussion threads aren't a good thing for you to read.
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  #11  
Old 04-24-2012, 03:32 PM
Joey P Joey P is online now
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Thinking about this, I can understand where people would want to have previews be considered spoilers and I can understand trying to draw the line at the end of the actual show and calling anything that aired before that fair game, but since the discussion STARTS at that point and runs for a few days after that point, I think it's difficult to draw it there.
For example, with House. Most of us saw the previews, I assume commercials have aired showing the same thing. If one person brings it up we're going to have a whole thread of spoiler boxes OR no spoiler boxes and half the people throwing fits about all the speculation going on because they now know what's going to happen during 3 seconds of next weeks episode.
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Old 04-24-2012, 03:47 PM
Ellen Cherry Ellen Cherry is offline
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I'm one of the Cafe Society mods. This is getting to be a big problem, I suppose due to more and more programs and movies being made from popular works of literature. This has always been the case, however. Laws, can you think of the shrieking that would have occurred in 1939 if we'd had the Internet back when the movie version of Gone with the Wind was being made?

Anyway, I really don't think we can police for material that is aired in conjunction with the broadcast of an episode. We can and do try to keep book and movie/TV shows separate to respond to the desire not to have the viewing experience spoiled. Or, in the case where the two are commingled, an enforced spoiler policy.

Anything beyond that is like Joey says; it's too hard to keep straight. If someone doesn't want anything spoiled they should either A) avoid online discussions of their favorite programs, or B) read through their fingers, scanning for key words like "preview" and "next week." Everyone can be courteous by announcing what they're saying is based on 1. conjecture 2. spoilers 3. insider info, etc.

Personally, I'm a "read through my fingers" type; I don't like to have things spoiled, even previews, but I deal.
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Old 04-24-2012, 04:18 PM
Munch Munch is offline
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Originally Posted by Ellen Cherry View Post
This is getting to be a big problem
It's always been a problem, helped in no small part to many people on this board being completely unable to understand how to do simple board functions like post URLs, let alone a spoiler box. Additionally, the overuse of spoiler boxes (i.e. people putting idle speculation in spoiler boxes, having entire conversations inside spoiler boxes, etc.) has people completely flummoxed as to when and where a spoiler box is actually needed.

This has always just been a pet peeve of mine, and I brought it up pretty regularly ever since spoiler boxes became available - I'm glad it's become even more clear that a policy needs to be formulated, even if it's just a strongly worded sticky post that contains "suggested guidelines".
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Old 04-24-2012, 04:31 PM
TruCelt TruCelt is offline
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I want to be clear that I wasn't trying to pick on that specific poster, and s/he was actually quite polite; but it's possible to be both polite and out of line.

This thread started because in that one I wanted to say "No, that's not a spoiler, a spoiler is. . ." and then I realized it's a wide, amorphous, gently sloping, field of grey. That's why I think we need an accepted board definition to which folks can point and be pointed. Clarity prevents rancor.
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Old 04-24-2012, 06:22 PM
Fenris Fenris is offline
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I'd suggest that the "default" rule should be "Anything that aired during the episode's time slot-commercials, flash-forwards, previews" are fair game. Anything that appeared outside or after that time-slot shouldn't be.

That said, I don't care and would respect a thread that had the alternate rule.

Maybe the best rule is "assume that previews are ok unless the op specifies otherwise". Yeah, we'll get some parallel episode threads, but not that many and really, who cares if we do?
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Old 04-24-2012, 06:43 PM
Gary Robson Gary Robson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joey P View Post
What about...But but but, I turn it off before the previews come on, and I go out of my way to not watch the commercials.
I'm with you. I always turn the show off before the previews, and I don't watch trailers if I can possibly avoid it. I want to watch everything unfold.

I don't get bent out of shape over spoilers, but if I go to all of the trouble to stop watching before the previews and skip over trailers (I time-shift everything on the DVR, so that's easy), then it's certainly annoying when someone blurts out "are you looking forward to Sean Connery's guest appearance on Game of Thrones next week when he kidnaps the queen?"
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Old 04-24-2012, 08:00 PM
Joey P Joey P is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gary "Wombat" Robson View Post
I'm with you. I always turn the show off before the previews, and I don't watch trailers if I can possibly avoid it. I want to watch everything unfold.

I don't get bent out of shape over spoilers, but if I go to all of the trouble to stop watching before the previews and skip over trailers (I time-shift everything on the DVR, so that's easy), then it's certainly annoying when someone blurts out "are you looking forward to Sean Connery's guest appearance on Game of Thrones next week when he kidnaps the queen?"
I DO watch previews, I was just making a point.

SPOILER:

Also, please give people a hint as to what's in the spoiler


not good:
SPOILER:

John is going to kill Mark next week!


good:
Based on something I read at TWOP/the previews for next week/a podcast with the director/etc WRT John finding out Mark's secret...
SPOILER:

John is going to drain him by accident since he likes faerie blood so much
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Old 04-24-2012, 08:34 PM
Cat Whisperer Cat Whisperer is offline
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My rule of spoilers would be anything that has gone out over the air is not a spoiler. It isn't other people's responsibility to not let you know about something that has already been broadcast.
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Old 04-24-2012, 09:09 PM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is online now
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Can we establish a time limit on spoilers? There was a recent thread about The Hobbit where the poster felt he had to warn us that he was going to spoil the ending. I'm thinking the book was published in 1937 - it's past the spoiler limit.
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Old 04-24-2012, 09:56 PM
don't ask don't ask is online now
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It can get really silly as some Dopers can insulate themselves from real life.

Years ago I was criticized for mentioning, in a thread about poker, the winner of the WSOP held many months prior. Apparently the final table had not yet been shown on TV and somehow a poker fan had avoided knowing the result despite the wide media coverage.

Where does that end?

"Oh, thanks for wrecking my weekend. I was planning on watching Band of Brothers but now that I know the Allies won the war..."
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  #21  
Old 04-25-2012, 02:38 AM
Martini Enfield Martini Enfield is offline
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I'm not a huge TV fan (due to time as much as anything else), but it's worth bearing in mind that these shows air in "other countries" as well as the US, often some time (months or years) after they aired in the US.

It's for that reason I almost never participate in TV show discussion threads here - I don't want my enjoyment of a new series spoiled before the show even gets on TV here, and by the time it does, it's old hat in the US and no-one on the boards is interested in discussing it anymore.

Now, it's clearly not reasonable to say "You can't discuss this episode until it's aired in Upper Obscurania," but the general idea (that it might be better to err on the side of caution wrt spoilers in really popular shows) was worth at least mentioning.
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Old 04-25-2012, 08:06 AM
Sigmagirl Sigmagirl is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cochrane View Post
I didn't think either comment about next week's preview spoiled anything. One was just a one-word comment: "jeez." How that spoils anything is beyond me. The other one merely says we get to see some powerhouse acting from Robert Sean Leonard, the lead who plays Wilson.
Thank you. The second comment, the one about RSL, was mine. I deliberately said only that to avoid any spoilage. I have tried to be sensitive to those who don't like spoilers, and I really can't see how remarking that a televised preview shows that a lead actor on a drama show is going to do some dramatic acting.

I think that if I had put that information in a spoiler box, as in
SPOILER:
It looks as if we'll get to see some powerhouse acting from Robert Sean Leonard!

it would have just looked foolish. He's a dramatic actor on a drama show, and he's going to appear and do some dramatic acting. What have I spoiled?
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  #23  
Old 04-25-2012, 08:16 AM
BigT BigT is offline
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Honestly, I can't see why you can't just go with a policy to only discuss what is in the current or previous episodes. it's just as arbitrary as a line at whatever's been aired, and it offends fewer people. It's a very obvious line.

And as for moderation, I thought we already delegated that out: the Dopers who know the show report spoilers, and then the mods assume they are correct and go in and spoiler box them.
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Old 04-25-2012, 09:01 AM
Darth Panda Darth Panda is offline
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OK, so I'm one of the people who doesn't watch previews at the end of episodes, unsubscribed from the Doctor Who Twitter feed very upset that they spoiled their own show, etc., etc.

I think it would be great to have threads where shows could be discussed without reference to anything that wasn't in-between the opening and closing credits.

BUT, I realize that most people would rather include stuff like trailers, IMDB, interviews with the director, and stuff like that. So, I just don't read any threads about shows that I really like, with occasional exceptions.

My take, then, is that it would probably be best to define spoilers in a certan way (it sounds like a lot of people are in favor of including everything that has aired as non-spoiler, and putting other stuff in boxes) and then make sure it's reasonably well communicated and enforced.

In addition, I think mods should be supportive of posters who want to set up a thread with tighter rules, such as "in between the credits."

I would consider myself in the minority in terms of what I like, so I don't expect the overall board rules to cater to me - but I think that there are enough people who are irked by even minor spoilers that having some super-non-spoilage-plus threads might make sense.

Last edited by Darth Panda; 04-25-2012 at 09:02 AM..
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Old 04-25-2012, 10:15 AM
kunilou kunilou is offline
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Originally Posted by BigT View Post
Honestly, I can't see why you can't just go with a policy to only discuss what is in the current or previous episodes. it's just as arbitrary as a line at whatever's been aired, and it offends fewer people. It's a very obvious line.
Not so obvious. I got ripped once for discussing an episode after it had aired on the East Coast, but before it was shown in the Pacific Time Zone. I understand that was too soon, but I've seen other posters get angry because the show had aired, but they had recorded it and hadn't played it back yet.

As far as I'm concerned, the preview is part of the episode.
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Old 04-25-2012, 10:25 AM
Hal Briston Hal Briston is offline
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I know that it never actually gets past the "that's a great idea, let's do that!" phase, but every time this crops up, I look back to the solution that was brought up several years ago:

We're in the "Whatever Show, 4/10" thread. That's for discussing things from the 4/10 episode and back. If you want to talk about next week's episode, then start the "Whatever Show, 4/17" thread. It's not like you're going to be starting a thread that wouldn't be started anyway, you can talk to your heart's content and people who don't like spoilers (which previews undoubtedly are) don't have to see them.

It's simple, it shows common courtesy, and it'll certainly get ignored...again.
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Old 04-25-2012, 10:31 AM
twickster twickster is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darth Panda View Post

In addition, I think mods should be supportive of posters who want to set up a thread with tighter rules, such as "in between the credits."

I would consider myself in the minority in terms of what I like, so I don't expect the overall board rules to cater to me - but I think that there are enough people who are irked by even minor spoilers that having some super-non-spoilage-plus threads might make sense.
You think we should be, perhaps, but you'd be wrong. It's hard enough policing all of this without having "loose," "comfy," "snug," "tight," and "supertight" versions of the rules in effect in different threads.

In general, we treat anything that has been broadcast, including previews to next week's show, as open knowledge -- with the proviso that East Coast folks should be sensitive to West Coast folks.

Beyond that, we've set up the superstrict rules for Game of Thrones, and it's been a complete pain in the ass, and sustainable only because Gukumatz, og bless him, has been willing to help out in those threads. We will continue to allow it for that show/those books, but it's way more trouble for the mods than it's worth -- in my opinion. (I am here speaking as a mod, but as one of three mods who covers that forum full-time.)

For those who are especially sensitive to spoilers, again, we recommend that you not subscribe to those threads with email updates, because those emails show the spoilers openly. You can still subscribe to the thread without email updates (I believe you can change your default setting to/from "yes, email updates" as you sign up for new threads) to make it easier to find, but you will not risk getting material you don't want to see via email.

Overall comment: we're not going to make a new set of rules about spoilers. We ask that people use their common sense, we ask that people be courteous -- and we ask that people remember there is no hard and fast rule that will solve every conflict in every possible situation.

twickster, Cafe Society moderator
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  #28  
Old 04-25-2012, 10:33 AM
TubaDiva TubaDiva is offline
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I am not a moderator that has to deal with a lot of these situations but I do think you have to come down on the side of common sense here.

And mostly that's what we do -- but it's not our responsibility to make sure that someone who wants everything in the show to be a total surprise is insulated from every comment and discussion. It's also incumbent upon the person wanting to be under the Cone of Silence to stay out of situations where they might see something they don't want to know yet.

Our current policy in this regard should be sufficient, it's been hashed out over time and experience and covers most eventualities.

Last edited by TubaDiva; 04-25-2012 at 10:35 AM..
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  #29  
Old 04-25-2012, 10:35 AM
Hal Briston Hal Briston is offline
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Originally Posted by Hal Briston View Post
I look back to the solution that was brought up several years ago:
Just for reference sake (things get reasonable at post #32).
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  #30  
Old 04-25-2012, 10:39 AM
TruCelt TruCelt is offline
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Originally Posted by Darth Panda View Post
. . .

My take, then, is that it would probably be best to define spoilers in a certan way (it sounds like a lot of people are in favor of including everything that has aired as non-spoiler, and putting other stuff in boxes) and then make sure it's reasonably well communicated and enforced.

In addition, I think mods should be supportive of posters who want to set up a thread with tighter rules, such as "in between the credits."

. . .
This is just what I'm hoping for; an accepted definition, and then maybe three categories so we can say in shorthand:

"This is a category Three thread, all information from any source is free game." or
"This is a category two thread, information from the movie and previews of the sequel are free game, but no far-ahead book/movie spoilers please." or
"This is a category One thread, only information from the show itself is welcome, and only after it's been fully aired." or ???

Because typing out the rules is tedious and confusing and leaves too much open to interpretation. This way we can just name a category, add a link to the sticky or whatever, and get on with it.

The sticky can also include warnings to newbies about how spoiler boxes are sometimes defeated by the preview or e-mail subscription processes.

Because I'd feel very lonely if I couldn't discuss the show I'm watching without having the next episode ruined, and although I'm not in that box, I do feel for my fellow Dopers. I also want to know when I'm free to prattle on at will about my guesses (half the fun for me!) and why I think they're valid.
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  #31  
Old 04-25-2012, 11:17 AM
Darth Panda Darth Panda is offline
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I'm sticking with my original plan, which is to just not particpate in any threads. It's worked so far
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  #32  
Old 04-25-2012, 03:24 PM
Munch Munch is offline
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Originally Posted by TubaDiva View Post
Our current policy in this regard should be sufficient, it's been hashed out over time and experience and covers most eventualities.
First off, it's clearly not sufficient, since the issue arises time after time after time. Saying that it's sufficient doesn't make it so.

Secondly, I understand the desire to not make any more rules.

But lastly, could moderators at least use a bit stronger of a hand when dealing with spoiler box abusers? Not that you need to be issuing warnings or threats or anything - but being a little bit more manhattanish in dealing with fixing broken spoiler boxes, misused spoiler boxes (Joey P has an excellent example above of spoiler box misuse that has been going on for years now), etc. would I think go a long way.

Yes - we should be using common sense. But in the meantime, could mods be a bit more vocal with those who don't have any?
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  #33  
Old 04-25-2012, 04:38 PM
Irishman Irishman is offline
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The problem with previews, as previously alluded, is that the preview creators are sometimes not the same folks writing the episodes, and they have different goals.

The writers are trying to create an interesting plot, that unfolds in a specific manner. They throw in surprises and plot twists and such to build the drama and execute at a specific pace.

The preview creators are trying to take the finished product, and summarize it in a manner to create a sense of expectation in potential viewers, maybe even people who don't watch the show. (Thus you get "a very special episode of..." every other week.)

So I have seen plot points dropped in previews that are spoilers. Example: recently there was a commercial for a show where a woman is abducted on video. But, "is it real, or is she faking it?" comes out in the preview. Now that's the kind of plot twist I would like to see play out in the episode, not dropped in a preview to drum up interest. If I'm a fan of the show, I don't need a preview to make me excited for the next week's episode. If I don't watch the show, how likely am I to see an preview and say, "Oh, they're going to examine the problem of internet blogs being faked and repercussions. I think I want to watch that,"? I don't think I'm going to do that often. YMMV.

I try to forget the previews and let the show engross me, and follow along with the unfurling.

Somebody also pointed out an example where the preview aired during the run of the show revealed the killer for the show that was airing. That's an example where next week's plot builds on this week's plot. That is definitely a preview that is a spoiler. Perhaps not by the time the thread is in discussion, but certainly to the person watching the show. So that shows that previews cannot be counted on to be spoiler free.
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  #34  
Old 04-25-2012, 04:56 PM
twickster twickster is offline
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Three volunteer moderators -- hell, three hundred volunteer moderators -- are not going to have sufficient knowledge of every twist and turn of every show on every channel on every continent to know what is and what isn't a spoiler. We rely on the people watching the shows to let us know when there are open spoilers that need to be hidden. We are happy to do so.

If someone is abusing spoiler boxes -- and, frankly, I have no idea what that means -- report the post and explain, very clearly and very specifically, what the nature of that abuse is. We deal with individual reports as we receive them. If you see someone with a pattern of such abuse, report it every time you see it so we can perceive the pattern as well. Don't assume we've seen Poster X doing [whatever] and ignored it -- assume we haven't seen it.

twickster, Cafe Society moderator
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  #35  
Old 04-25-2012, 09:12 PM
C K Dexter Haven C K Dexter Haven is offline
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Just a reminder, that this is NOT just a US time zone issue. TV shown in the US may not be shown in Europe/Asia/Australia/wherever for several months, and (importantly) vice versa. Shows released in the UK often don't get to the US for months; and many US viewers would be annoyed if that was all treated as "open knowledge."

The fact that a show has been aired (or a movie released) in one location doesn't mean that the material is "open knowledge."

At the same time, those who want to scrupulously (or obsessively) avoid spoilers should NOT READ THE THREADS about those items.
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  #36  
Old 04-26-2012, 07:04 AM
Munch Munch is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twickster View Post
If someone is abusing spoiler boxes -- and, frankly, I have no idea what that means
What part of Joey P's post is unclear to you? Maybe if we can identify where your understanding of the issue is deficient, we could make just a tiny bit of progress here.
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  #37  
Old 04-26-2012, 07:22 AM
C K Dexter Haven C K Dexter Haven is offline
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A few years ago, the question of previews was discussed here, and the ultimate decision was that anyone who was so sensitive to spoilers that they didn't want to see previews, shouldn't be reading the thread.

That was some time back, and current CS mods are certainly free to change it.

Remember that use of spoiler tags is a courtesy, a guideline for etiquette and good manners, but not a hard-and-fast rule.

And, regarding Joey P's point, that spoiler tags should have some indication of what's inside them, that's covered in the Guidelines that are specific for Cafe Society: Guidelines We could add something to the General Guidelines, as well.
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  #38  
Old 04-26-2012, 07:57 AM
Martini Enfield Martini Enfield is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C K Dexter Haven View Post
Just a reminder, that this is NOT just a US time zone issue. TV shown in the US may not be shown in Europe/Asia/Australia/wherever for several months, and (importantly) vice versa. Shows released in the UK often don't get to the US for months; and many US viewers would be annoyed if that was all treated as "open knowledge."

The fact that a show has been aired (or a movie released) in one location doesn't mean that the material is "open knowledge."

At the same time, those who want to scrupulously (or obsessively) avoid spoilers should NOT READ THE THREADS about those items.
*Polite cough* I refer you post #21 where I made pretty much exactly the same point.

I am, however, pleased that we agree in principle.
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  #39  
Old 04-26-2012, 08:12 AM
Fenris Fenris is offline
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Originally Posted by twickster View Post
If someone is abusing spoiler boxes -- and, frankly, I have no idea what that means --
This:
SPOILER:




























































:: flogs spoiler box ::
Smacks spoiler box around a little
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  #40  
Old 04-26-2012, 09:24 AM
twickster twickster is offline
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Sorry for my brain fart. I'd call those examples "using spoiler boxes badly," rather than "abusing spoiler boxes" (not that that's necessarily moot), and it didn't occur to me that he was referring to something in an earlier post, since I use the "go to first unread" function in threads I'm actively involved in.
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  #41  
Old 04-26-2012, 09:40 AM
Munch Munch is offline
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Originally Posted by C K Dexter Haven View Post
And, regarding Joey P's point, that spoiler tags should have some indication of what's inside them, that's covered in the Guidelines that are specific for Cafe Society: Guidelines We could add something to the General Guidelines, as well.
That's wonderful. Like I originally asked, could moderators use those General Guidelines as license to use a bit stronger force when dealing with those who are using (or not using, depending on the situation) spoiler boxes improperly? I'm not asking for warnings or suspensions or anything, but just a "C'mon IdiotPosterX, could you please use a little common sense? Guidelines on how to use spoiler boxes is posted for all to see in our General Guidelines thread, but it's not that hard to figure out that posting a spoiler box with absolutely no indication as to what's inside of it doesn't do anybody any good*."

*Or substitute "posting idle speculation based on nothing more than what we already know has happened isn't a spoiler - it's just speculation", or whatever the hell else people are doing to make spoiler boxes the bane of all our existences.
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  #42  
Old 04-26-2012, 10:37 AM
TruCelt TruCelt is offline
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Right. But the fact remains that we get these threads that begin with a long-drawn out explanation of exactly what spoiler level we're trying to maintain in the thread, and those explanations then are open to interpretation, and not always written well, and sometimes they are even quite rambling and incomprehensible. ;-)

If we had a basic definition of "Spoiler" that includes what we, at this board, think of when we use the word, and what it does/does not include; plus some understood levels of openness that could be quickly referenced, with concise well-written explanations in the Guidelines, I really think we could avoid a lot of bickering.

In the example I gave in Post 14, referring the poster to CK's excellent Cafe Guidelines link, would really not have solved the problem; as there would still have been the question of whether this "counted" as a Spoiler.

Last edited by TruCelt; 04-26-2012 at 10:38 AM..
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  #43  
Old 04-26-2012, 11:22 AM
Acsenray Acsenray is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joey P View Post
I feel that once the previews have aired that should be allowed to be discussed and speculating what's going to happen in next week's show (not just in House, but in general) should be allowed.
I'm one of those who consider "next time on ..." type previews to be spoilers, but I think it should be up to the OP to establish whether that is the case for any particular thread.
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  #44  
Old 04-26-2012, 06:01 PM
C K Dexter Haven C K Dexter Haven is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TruCelt View Post
If we had a basic definition of "Spoiler" that includes what we, at this board, think of when we use the word, and what it does/does not include; plus some understood levels of openness that could be quickly referenced, with concise well-written explanations in the Guidelines, I really think we could avoid a lot of bickering.
In the past, when we've discussed this, we (and by that I mean the whole gang involved in discussion) weren't able to come up with any useful guidelines. It's far too personal and individual a matter, and pretty much in the eye of the beholder . We've had people who DIDN'T know the ending of PSYCHO, and were dismayed to find that everyone else thinks it's pretty much as well known as the ending of the Iliad.
SPOILER:
OMG, you mean Troy loses???
A prime example of why a definition wouldn't do it: one might think that the cast of a movie would be OK to reveal, since it's in all the publicity etc. However, there are cases where there's a "surprise" appearance by some star -- or some actor/character from an earlier episdoe of the series -- that would be a spoiler.

Our conclusion back then was basically reduced to common sense and common courtesy. We want to make posters aware that others may not want to have the experience spoiled, so we ask people to please be considerate and think about using spoiler tags when appropriate.

Of course, the current discussion and current CS mods could certainly change that. I'm just the old fart recalling the old days.

Last edited by C K Dexter Haven; 04-26-2012 at 06:01 PM..
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  #45  
Old 04-26-2012, 06:46 PM
twickster twickster is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C K Dexter Haven View Post

Our conclusion back then was basically reduced to common sense and common courtesy. We want to make posters aware that others may not want to have the experience spoiled, so we ask people to please be considerate and think about using spoiler tags when appropriate.

Of course, the current discussion and current CS mods could certainly change that. I'm just the old fart recalling the old days.
Actually, I said just this back in post #27:

Quote:
Originally Posted by twickster View Post

Overall comment: we're not going to make a new set of rules about spoilers. We ask that people use their common sense, we ask that people be courteous -- and we ask that people remember there is no hard and fast rule that will solve every conflict in every possible situation.

twickster, Cafe Society moderator
Ellen Cherry and Marley23 have indicated on the mod loop that they are happy to let this be the final statement by the current Cafe Society mods.

Last edited by twickster; 04-26-2012 at 06:48 PM.. Reason: cited wrong post numeber
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  #46  
Old 04-28-2012, 02:31 PM
Patty O'Furniture Patty O'Furniture is offline
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Stay tuned for scenes from next week's thread where we find out that the spoiler tag doesn't work with Tapatalk!
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  #47  
Old 04-28-2012, 03:02 PM
Joey P Joey P is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patty O'Furniture View Post
Stay tuned for scenes from next week's thread where we find out that the spoiler tag doesn't work with Tapatalk!
Thanks for ruining that for me...we have spoiler tags for a reason...jerk.

(And a so I don't get a warning for the 'jerk' comment because sometimes people don't realize that posts can be jokes)
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  #48  
Old 04-28-2012, 03:39 PM
AuntiePam AuntiePam is offline
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Originally Posted by twickster View Post
In general, we treat anything that has been broadcast, including previews to next week's show, as open knowledge -- with the proviso that East Coast folks should be sensitive to West Coast folks.
West Coasters should be aware of the risks, just like folks in other countries. It's only a couple of hours, and I assume that West Coasters are spending that time arranging platters of crudites and decanting the appropriate wine.

I stay out of threads for non-US shows that haven't aired here yet, and sometimes that takes years.
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  #49  
Old 04-29-2012, 02:21 AM
Martini Enfield Martini Enfield is offline
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Originally Posted by AuntiePam View Post
I stay out of threads for non-US shows that haven't aired here yet, and sometimes that takes years.
Are there many Non-US shows (besides Dr Who) that people in the US follow, though?

I get the impression most of the stuff the BBC makes that's popular in the US is only popular with people who have ways of seeing the shows before they air on TV in the US.
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  #50  
Old 04-29-2012, 10:30 AM
twickster twickster is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martini Enfield View Post
Are there many Non-US shows (besides Dr Who) that people in the US follow, though?

I get the impression most of the stuff the BBC makes that's popular in the US is only popular with people who have ways of seeing the shows before they air on TV in the US.
Not true -- there are a bunch of BBC shows that air here on PBS several months after they've been broadcast in the UK -- Downton Abbey, Cranfield, et al. I myself am very much looking forward to the new (to us) Sherlock Holmes episodes that will start running next Sunday here, and deliberately stayed out of the threads about the show that ran with regard to the UK airing.

Last edited by twickster; 04-29-2012 at 10:31 AM.. Reason: unclear what "it" referred to
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