Kontext: Vor kurzem, nachdem ich einen Beitrag bearbeitetet hatte (da ich wissen wollte warum dieser soviele Downvotes bekommen hat), wurde mir gesagt, dass ich den/die/das "meta-noise" doch bitte nicht hinzufügen soll.

Wie kann also der Begriff "meta-noise" ins Deutsche übersetzt werden? Falls es keine eindeutige Übersetzung gibt, währe eine Umschreibung/Erklärung des Begriffes hilfreich.

(Ich habe als einzige Übersetzung "irrelevante Daten" gefunden, passt das in etwa?)

  • What were the changes you made?
    – Robert
    May 16, 2018 at 20:55
  • 3
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it's on how SO works, not about German language, so it should be on Mata.
    – Robert
    May 16, 2018 at 21:12
  • 2
    @Robert But isn't this the right place asking for a translation? Or do you only mean the part asking for a definition?
    – some_user
    May 16, 2018 at 21:19
  • 2
    atClose-Voters: Meaning of a word is on-topic, says the tag. Ironically, as you guys seem to read the comment, editing in this whole context from a comment might be read as adding meta-noise about SE-workings? (@SomeWindowsUser That comment, its type, might usually end up in its own meta-post though.) May 16, 2018 at 22:43
  • 4
    Meaning of an Anglizismus and its "translation" into German, that's at home here. @SomeWindowsUser SO is StackOverflow, SE is StackExchange. You might try another edit to make it clear whether Robert is right (then this could be migrated) or my reading fits better (then I'll vote to re-open). May 17, 2018 at 7:08

1 Answer 1


Communication is talking to someone about something. Meta-communication is talking to someone about the communication itself.

Noise is here a concept from communication theory as well, as in the pair "signal to noise", adapted from the engineering concept. Signal is the meaningful information you want to get, noise is the rest of the communication that supposedly does not add any value to the topic at hand.

That leads us into the conundrum that meta-noise is quite often an oxymoron, talking about talking for clarification or establishing standards of understanding are not noise by definition, but in fact the opposite. Meta-communication is there to improve the signal as transmitted and received. Something vital in case of different languages, cultures etc.

This does not mean that meta-communication may be perceived as superfluous in certain situations that should be otherwise very clear cut. But in most cases I ever saw it is just a derogatory term.

While this answer is no statement about the quality of any post in particular or the "SE-model" as mentioned in a comment below the question. However, on SE sites it might indeed be better to not use meta-communication in a question or in an answer, as far as my humble understanding of that models goes. These meta-requests should really be made into comments or on the respective meta-sites. Conveniently, this paragraph with additional explanations might also serve as an example for perceived "meta-noise".

The suggested translation "irrelavante Daten" is not entirely bad, although Daten is quite abstract for meaning coherent words of a natural language.

One translation for this attempted refusal to communicate would be quite straightforward:

  • "Meta" from the Greek is a common prefix in German as well:


    1. zwischen, inmitten, nach, nachher, später, ver… (im Sinne der Umwandlung, des Wechsels)
    2. drückt in Bildungen mit Substantiven aus, dass sich etw. auf einer höheren Stufe, Ebene befindet, darüber geordnet ist oder hinter etw. steht.
      From: DWDS.de meta-
  • "Rauschen"
    as the German translation usually used for "noise" in "signal to noise":

    signal noise –– Rauschen, Signalrauschen
    noise signal –– Störsignal, Rauschsignal
    signal-to-noise ratio — Signal-Rausch-Verhältnis, Rauschabstand, Signalrauschabstand, Signal-Rausch-Abstand, Signal-Stör-Verhältnis (From: Linguee: signal to noise)

Rauschen is a better fit since it uses existing concepts and translations thereof. It even is more naturally related to human language, especially when voiced.

  • Varför på engelska?
    – Carsten S
    May 17, 2018 at 9:00
  • @CarstenS Die Frage wurde ursprünglich auf englisch gestellt, und später (nach LangLangCs Antwort) auf deutsch umgeschrieben.
    – Arsak
    May 17, 2018 at 9:19
  • @Marzipanherz, I hadn't noticed, Danke.
    – Carsten S
    May 17, 2018 at 9:21
  • @CarstenS Earlier versions of the question were posed in English. Your comment made me aware that the Q is now in German. Currently I just expanded it and I am now too time-constrained to translate the answer as well in a timely manner. Thanks for the heads up. Falls jemand zwischenzeitlich da ran will… May 17, 2018 at 9:35
  • @LangLangC: ich hatte das vorgeschlagen, da die Close Voter offenbar der englischen Frage nicht so genau entnehmen konnten, was der OP wissen möchte. Eine Antwort auf Englisch halte ich aber hier für angemessen und völlig in Ordnung.
    – Takkat
    May 17, 2018 at 10:03

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