Ob­ject level and Meta level

TagLast edit: 29 Apr 2023 16:15 UTC by Lauro Langosco

Object level vs. Meta level is a distinction between levels of abstraction. The object level usually is about a specific issue at hand, while the meta level is about general principles, ‘arguments about arguments’, or ‘thinking about thinking’.

Example 1: “You should care about climate change because of the greenhouse effect” is an object-level argument, while “you should care about climate change because the majority of scientists agree it is a problem” is a meta-level argument.

Example 2: Planning a project is an object-level thing to do, while doing a project management course is a more meta-level thing to do.

It is often useful to move up and down the ladder of abstraction to get points across clearly. Concrete object-level examples are easy to grasp and can provide grounding, while describing a concept on the meta-level is helpful for applying it to a broad domain.

Levels of Action

alyssavance14 Apr 2011 0:18 UTC
179 points
47 comments9 min readLW link

Poli­tics is way too meta

Rob Bensinger17 Mar 2021 7:04 UTC
282 points
46 comments11 min readLW link1 review

Seek­ing a “Seek­ing Whence ‘Seek Whence’” Sequence

Will_Newsome25 Jun 2012 11:10 UTC
39 points
33 comments3 min readLW link

Cul­ti­vate an ob­ses­sion with the ob­ject level

Richard_Ngo7 Jun 2023 1:39 UTC
70 points
4 comments3 min readLW link

Dis­cuss: Meta-Think­ing Skills

[deleted]10 Oct 2010 20:05 UTC
8 points
11 comments2 min readLW link

So­cial sta­tus part 1/​2: ne­go­ti­a­tions over ob­ject-level preferences

Steven Byrnes5 Mar 2024 16:29 UTC
108 points
15 comments21 min readLW link

Ac­tu­ally, “per­sonal at­tacks af­ter ob­ject-level ar­gu­ments” is a pretty good rule of epistemic conduct

Max H17 Sep 2023 20:25 UTC
37 points
15 comments7 min readLW link