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How to make post without pissing each other off (or, a "code of conduct" meta-thread)

1457910

Posts

  • MentalExerciseMentalExercise Indefenestrable Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    _J_ it is bad to offend someone because the vast majority of the te it impedes, rather than aides, debate and discourse. And while there are imaginable situations in which even very benign posts could cause offense, that does not make it impossible for people to understand others well enough that they cannot divine whether most posts are likely to cause offense. I think amphilosophical lens may be the wrong one to use at this moment.

    MentalExercise on
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    --LeVar Burton
  • DrezDrez Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    _J_ wrote: »
    Judgement wrote: »
    While I agree with most of what you're saying, I disagree with the part in bold. People do choose whether or not to feel a certain type of emotion based on the situation. We define by ourselves what makes us happy, sad, angry, etc. These factor into our responses to what others say or do. For the example J gave, Player A is offended because he chooses so, whereas Player B is not because he chose not to be. Player A has developed a sensitivity to comments that, by his/her judgment, are deemed inappropriate. Player B does not have this sensitivity to such comments, perhaps instead disregarding it as bogus and unreal.

    People choose to engage in a process of skin-thickening with regards to various things, but many emotional responses are reflexive and cathartic, and there isn't an opportunity to have the part of your brain that would typically intervene intervene without that kind of premeditated focus.

    Regardless of the psychological nonsense posited to explain the process by which one "feels" offense, the point is that a particular poster cannot fathom every possible reaction any reader may have to any post. It is possible that every post, ever, is in some way offensive to someone.

    So, maintaining "You oughtn't post X because it might offend someone" is a sentiment which can be applied to every post, ever.

    Player A: I just ate some pepperoni pizza. It was delicious!
    Player B: I am jewish and pepperoni is not kosher. You just offended me by consuming unclean foods!

    It makes a bit of sense to not deliberately antagonize people by posting things which one knows will offend a mass of persons. The question is how one can know what will be considered offensive.

    Leaving aside the question of why it is bad to offend someone.

    I see this as an excuse for not bothering to have, or not trying to achieve, any empathy with either an individual or the climate created by a thread full of individuals.

    No extreme position is correct here. You can, in fact, attempt to try and understand other people, and also attempt to not trample on their sensibilities as much as is necessary in the course of a conversation or debate. I'm not expecting you to fully know what will offend each and every person in a thread (and I don't necessarily believe anyone should be forced to walk on eggshells to avoid offending those with the thinnest skin, because that could just be a rhetorical gambit as well - perceiving the smallest slights in everything and decrying an otherwise decent post as a result). I don't think it's unreasonable to expect people to try and apply some sense of what affect their words might have. You might get it wrong, sure, but so what? At least you tried.

    Is it possible that someone will be offended by something anyway, despite your best efforts not to antagonize them? Sure. If that happens, the world isn't going to end. Everyone involved will do exactly what they do now: they will get offended and the thread will move on. But maybe if we all pay a little more mind to what might offend the people we're responding to, more of these incidents can be avoided.

    And maybe we can aim for the middle instead of race for the bottom here. You seem to be arguing that considering another person's emotions or sensibilities is futile because it is ultimately impossible to know, in an absolute sense, what they were thinking. This is true. But insofar as conversation is concerned, I'd say this kind of absolute knowledge isn't very important. MrMister hates being compared to pedophiles. I think most people would. If I say "oh yeah, Mr^2, well you know that's something a pedophile would argue!" I know I'm going to offend him. And I know posting something ELSE to make the same point (if possible) won't offend him. It's not impossible to infer how someone else might receive a comment you are about to make. Maybe not in all cases, but certain situations lend themselves to strong possibilities.

    I'm not expecting you to achieve perfect empathy with everyone, but I do expect a little. Empathy is a real thing. It is not impossible to assess how your own statements might be received by one or many others. And though you may be wrong from time to time, at least paying SOME mind to it can elevate the discourse.

    Drez on
  • _J__J_ Pedant Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    edited July 2010
    Drez wrote: »
    You seem to be arguing that considering another person's emotions or sensibilities is futile because it is ultimately impossible to know, in an absolute sense, what they were thinking. This is true.

    Alright, then.


    Drez wrote: »
    But insofar as conversation is concerned, I'd say this kind of absolute knowledge isn't very important. MrMister hates being compared to pedophiles. I think most people would. If I say "oh yeah, Mr^2, well you know that's something a pedophile would argue!" I know I'm going to offend him. And I know posting something ELSE to make the same point (if possible) won't offend him. It's not impossible to infer how someone else might receive a comment you are about to make. Maybe not in all cases, but certain situations lend themselves to strong possibilities.

    I can understand attempting to craft one's message to be rhetorically conducive to the continuation of conversation. If I want Player-A to continue to discuss topic X then I will craft my messages to be such that I will compel Player-A to continue to discuss the topic rather than huff off in a rage. This, of course, assumes that I can know what will compel Player-A to continue to discuss the topic.

    This whole thing also assumes that the point is to preserve the discussion. We’re not trying to discern a correct or a right, but rather we’re just striving to manifest a situation within which more people post and are not driven away from posting.

    Which is fine…I guess…but it raises the question of the point of the conversations themselves. What’s the point of the gay marriage thread if we are to only post comments which are crafted to compel others to reply? Unless we're just post-count farming.

    _J_ on
  • Loren MichaelLoren Michael Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    _J_ wrote: »
    Which is fine…I guess…but it raises the question of the point of the conversations themselves. What’s the point of the gay marriage thread if we are to only post comments which are crafted to compel others to reply? Unless we're just post-count farming.

    It looks like you're implying or assuming a false dichotomy. One could easily craft a series of comments that compels a reply AND leads to a desired outcome WRT truth, changing minds, or whatever.

    Loren Michael on
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  • Raybies666Raybies666 A bedroom in IrelandRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Raybies666 wrote: »
    Edit: and then I kept reading. Dammit.

    Eh. I'm not partial to lots of hugs & kisses, I prefer to keep feel-good instincts and butthurt-instincts out of conversations when I can, but I'm satisfied with emnmnme's clarification, I think emnmnme's satisfied with the approach I took.

    I can understand MrMister's dissatisfaction in one respect, I think the offense taken is valid and genuine, but I don't know how exactly it's been addressed in the past, how, in MrMister's words "it has been explained to him". I do think this thread is a testament to the fact that the way we often attempt to address these kinds of things are not sufficient, not really useful.

    I'm interested in giving people the benefit of the doubt, as well. I see that emnmnme is willing and capable of talking about what he said in a civil, lucid manner and I'm personally satisfied as to his honesty and integrity as a result. I'm sure that my involvement in this way colors my understanding of emnmnme, and my disengagement from the initial disagreement colors my understanding again, so I know that a conversation that I regard as fruitful isn't going to necessarily sway people who weren't involved, or people who were involved in a different capacity. I don't know how to resolve this problem.

    Neither do I. enmenmenme (i'm not spell checking THAT) explained himself and you were happy (perhaps not exactly the right word, but I'm tired) with his view being clear.

    I just had a hard day and was glad that the issue between the two of you was sorted out quickly enough, and then was a little put out that others looked at this and just called bullshit. Not actually butthurt per se, it just seemed to run contrary to the point of the thread.

    When I read his post first, I didn't think he said paedos=gays for a second. He drew a comparision that I wouldn't, but I got what he was trying to say. Perhaps Mrmister is too close to the subject matter.

    This isn't supposed to be an insult of any sort to Mrmister.

    To give an example of why I understand Mrmisters stance, I'm Irish (I'm going somewhere with this). As I was growing up, Irish jokes didn't bother me, until I stating hearing backhanded "ha, Irish are backward" comments a few times in my dealings with UK citizens in my job. Ironically, these comments were from people whose computer problems I was resolving. I started to understand what it's like to be on the receiving end of prejudices based on nothing more than a condition of my birth.

    It really pissed me off to the point that now I cringe my way through anything UK/US produced that mentions us, because I know it reinforces those views to people who cannot separate that from the reality.
    My fuse is now way shorter about the whole thing, despite the fact that I know shit like this is usually down to the vocal minority.

    Maybe Emn WAS a super douche, as opposed to misunderstood, but if he is trying now to clearly express himself/not be a superdouche, there should at least be an attempt to meet on the middle ground as you and he did.

    Give it a shot Mrmister, you've nothing to lose except a few minutes of your day that you would be spending on the forums anyway, and you've just watched him work it out with Loren fairly easily. I know people were trying to dismiss it as group hug bullshit, but in reality it was just civility.


    Just to clarify for anyone else reading: No I do not think being a victim of casual racism means I know what its like to be gay bashed.

    Raybies666 on
    Beat me on Wii U: Raybies
    Beat me on 360: Raybies666

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  • ArlingtonArlington Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Drez wrote: »
    Said Stuff

    What do you mean "you people"?

    On a related tangent people don't seem to give enough importance to the connotation of words. Two recent examples would be "manipulate" and "patriarchy (vs society)". Both words where technically correct in their use, but have certain connotations associated with them that colors peoples reactions.

    Arlington on
  • JudgementJudgement Registered User
    edited July 2010
    Judgement wrote: »
    While I agree with most of what you're saying, I disagree with the part in bold. People do choose whether or not to feel a certain type of emotion based on the situation. We define by ourselves what makes us happy, sad, angry, etc. These factor into our responses to what others say or do. For the example J gave, Player A is offended because he chooses so, whereas Player B is not because he chose not to be. Player A has developed a sensitivity to comments that, by his/her judgment, are deemed inappropriate. Player B does not have this sensitivity to such comments, perhaps instead disregarding it as bogus and unreal.

    People choose to engage in a process of skin-thickening with regards to various things, but many emotional responses are reflexive and cathartic, and there isn't an opportunity to have the part of your brain that would typically intervene intervene without that kind of premeditated focus.

    Oh, I wasn't trying to say emotions are not at times random. I was saying that we have the choice ourselves how to react. Sure, if someone calls me a motherf*cker I may be offended(more so if it is on a forum, where I cannot tell if someone is kidding or not). But I don't say that makes me angry. I own my feelings and can choose what to feel.

    Judgement on
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  • mythagomythago Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    jothki wrote: »
    Can I find it offensive that, in the context of this discussion, you just implied that all pedophiles secretly want to rape and eat children, or at least that being a pedophile is inherently as morally debased as that?

    Can I find it offensive that you don't know or care about the difference between imply and infer?

    mythago on
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  • jothkijothki Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    mythago wrote: »
    jothki wrote: »
    Can I find it offensive that, in the context of this discussion, you just implied that all pedophiles secretly want to rape and eat children, or at least that being a pedophile is inherently as morally debased as that?

    Can I find it offensive that you don't know or care about the difference between imply and infer?

    Must...resist...smug...pedantry...and...quoting...of...online...dictionaries...

    Yeah, I could win, but some things aren't worth the cost. Especially in this thread. :P

    jothki on
  • emnmnmeemnmnme Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    jothki wrote: »
    mythago wrote: »
    jothki wrote: »
    Can I find it offensive that, in the context of this discussion, you just implied that all pedophiles secretly want to rape and eat children, or at least that being a pedophile is inherently as morally debased as that?

    Can I find it offensive that you don't know or care about the difference between imply and infer?

    Must...resist...smug...pedantry...and...quoting...of...online...dictionaries...

    Yeah, I could win, but some things aren't worth the cost. Especially in this thread. :P

    Civility maintained.

    emnmnme on
  • HachfaceHachface Not the Minister Farrakhan you're thinking of Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    As long as we're being meta, I want to bring up one of my pet peeves that gets peevier by the day.

    Namely, too many posters are taking entirely too much glee in pointing out straw men, argumenta ad hominem, appeals to authority, and so forth. Logical Fallacy Bingo gets pretty tiresome, especially since half the time these terms are misapplied. I kind of wish that section would be taken out of the rules thread. Instead of providing guidelines for the debate it really just devolves arguments into one upsmanship and point-scoring.

    Hachface on
  • enc0reenc0re Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Hachface wrote: »
    As long as we're being meta, I want to bring up one of my pet peeves that gets peevier by the day.

    Namely, too many posters are taking entirely too much glee in pointing out straw men, argumenta ad hominem, appeals to authority, and so forth. Logical Fallacy Bingo gets pretty tiresome, especially since half the time these terms are misapplied. I kind of wish that section would be taken out of the rules thread. Instead of providing guidelines for the debate it really just devolves arguments into one upsmanship and point-scoring.

    I have to take the almost diametrically opposed opinion here. I think there are entirely too many logical fallacies spun in posts. And how will it stop if you don't call it out?

    enc0re on
  • HachfaceHachface Not the Minister Farrakhan you're thinking of Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    enc0re wrote: »
    Hachface wrote: »
    As long as we're being meta, I want to bring up one of my pet peeves that gets peevier by the day.

    Namely, too many posters are taking entirely too much glee in pointing out straw men, argumenta ad hominem, appeals to authority, and so forth. Logical Fallacy Bingo gets pretty tiresome, especially since half the time these terms are misapplied. I kind of wish that section would be taken out of the rules thread. Instead of providing guidelines for the debate it really just devolves arguments into one upsmanship and point-scoring.

    I have to take the almost diametrically opposed opinion here. I think there are entirely too many logical fallacies spun in posts. And how will it stop if you don't call it out?

    I am not in favor of logical fallacies -- what kind moron would be? However in practice I think having the list of them stickied on the main page fails to do anything other than give people pretexts to dismiss other posters. Again, it turns into obnoxious point-scoring.

    Hachface on
  • DrezDrez Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Hachface wrote: »
    enc0re wrote: »
    Hachface wrote: »
    As long as we're being meta, I want to bring up one of my pet peeves that gets peevier by the day.

    Namely, too many posters are taking entirely too much glee in pointing out straw men, argumenta ad hominem, appeals to authority, and so forth. Logical Fallacy Bingo gets pretty tiresome, especially since half the time these terms are misapplied. I kind of wish that section would be taken out of the rules thread. Instead of providing guidelines for the debate it really just devolves arguments into one upsmanship and point-scoring.

    I have to take the almost diametrically opposed opinion here. I think there are entirely too many logical fallacies spun in posts. And how will it stop if you don't call it out?

    I am not in favor of logical fallacies -- what kind moron would be? However in practice I think having the list of them stickied on the main page fails to do anything other than give people pretexts to dismiss other posters. Again, it turns into obnoxious point-scoring.

    I agree with Hachface here.

    Sometimes, people will say something like "ad hominem!" or "that's a strawman" without any supporting text. True? Possibly. Helpful? Usually not.

    I mean, you don't even need to use those words. If you really want to express why you feel someone is arguing with something you didn't actually say (strawman), you can discuss that in a way that doesn't even use the word "strawman."

    I'm not saying it's wrong to use the word, but I do agree with Hachface that a lot of people will just throw these words out there. And even if they are right, it's not necessarily helpful. It's basically along the lines of "ha ha I caught you being illogical!" more often than not. That goes against the grain of good discourse, in my opinion.

    Drez on
  • MKRMKR Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    It's like Godwinning. There are legitimate times to bring up Nazis or Hitler, but you invariably have some goose screaming "Godwin!" the moment it happens.

    Every single use of a fallacy has someone pointing it out whether the use of the fallacy was actually problematic, and treat the recommendation as a rule. Sometimes it's not that big a deal, and it's not necessary to drag the thread through 5 pages of it.

    It's usually best to just ignore it and get on with discussing the things in the post that have merit, if it does. If not, why respond?

    MKR on
  • jothkijothki Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    There certainly is some merit to encouraging posters to be more aware of the validity of their own arguments.

    Besides, it seems to work for people who sign their posts, don't capitalize, or don't break up paragraphs. Or at least it drives them away.

    Speaking of that, should we continue to be elitist bigots towards people who don't meet our standards for post composition? I like the result, but it might be more offputting towards newcomers than we need to be.

    jothki on
  • HefflingHeffling No Pic EverRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    jothki wrote: »
    There certainly is some merit to encouraging posters to be more aware of the validity of their own arguments.

    Besides, it seems to work for people who sign their posts, don't capitalize, or don't break up paragraphs. Or at least it drives them away.

    Speaking of that, should we continue to be elitist bigots towards people who don't meet our standards for post composition? I like the result, but it might be more offputting towards newcomers than we need to be.

    Debate and Discourse requires clear communication. If someone cannot form a coherent arguement either due to logical fallicies, an inability to use understandable english grammar or punctuation, or for any similar reason, they won't be taken seriously.

    It's not that the poster is a bad person, or is trying to be a bad person. But it is something that needs to be addressed. However, when you attempt to correct someone, they will perceive it as an attack on themselves, so it requires even more careful communication on your part to get them to understand that you're trying to help them improve their arguement, rather than attacking them for the form of their arguement.

    One thread I would LOVE to see here is a discussion thread that covers some variety of topics, and has forum goers critque the posts on criteria such as:

    Clarity of Communication
    Use of the English Language and Grammar
    Consistant Logic
    References to previous points (both yours and your oppositions)
    Tone

    These go beyond your own post, but also what you would expect to see in subsequent responses. For example, under tone, you could look at:
    What is my tone?
    Does it promote a conductive atmosphere?
    What tone would I reasonably expect to receive as a response to my post?
    etc etc

    You could also include things like:
    How not to be a douche
    What could be considered trolling
    Why referencing any part of Nazi Germany means you've lost your arguement
    etc etc

    What do you guys think?

    Heffling on
    If a movement doesn't have someone that can sit down opposite those in a position of power and strike a deal, how can that movement achieve success?
  • Loren MichaelLoren Michael Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Hachface wrote: »
    enc0re wrote: »
    Hachface wrote: »
    As long as we're being meta, I want to bring up one of my pet peeves that gets peevier by the day.

    Namely, too many posters are taking entirely too much glee in pointing out straw men, argumenta ad hominem, appeals to authority, and so forth. Logical Fallacy Bingo gets pretty tiresome, especially since half the time these terms are misapplied. I kind of wish that section would be taken out of the rules thread. Instead of providing guidelines for the debate it really just devolves arguments into one upsmanship and point-scoring.

    I have to take the almost diametrically opposed opinion here. I think there are entirely too many logical fallacies spun in posts. And how will it stop if you don't call it out?

    I am not in favor of logical fallacies -- what kind moron would be? However in practice I think having the list of them stickied on the main page fails to do anything other than give people pretexts to dismiss other posters. Again, it turns into obnoxious point-scoring.

    I don't think people really care about the list stickied on the main page. I'm probably not as representative as I think I am, but I totally forgot about it until you mentioned it. I point out fallacies because I prefer a bad argument be torn up than left to lead people the wrong way.

    Loren Michael on
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  • _J__J_ Pedant Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    edited July 2010
    Drez wrote: »
    Sometimes, people will say something like "ad hominem!" or "that's a strawman" without any supporting text. True? Possibly. Helpful? Usually not.

    Usually, supporting text is met with TL;DR.

    If we're to provide 15-page theses to support our posts, no one will read them.

    _J_ on
  • Loren MichaelLoren Michael Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Drez wrote: »
    Hachface wrote: »
    I am not in favor of logical fallacies -- what kind moron would be? However in practice I think having the list of them stickied on the main page fails to do anything other than give people pretexts to dismiss other posters. Again, it turns into obnoxious point-scoring.

    I agree with Hachface here.

    Sometimes, people will say something like "ad hominem!" or "that's a strawman" without any supporting text. True? Possibly. Helpful? Usually not.

    I mean, you don't even need to use those words. If you really want to express why you feel someone is arguing with something you didn't actually say (strawman), you can discuss that in a way that doesn't even use the word "strawman."

    I'm not saying it's wrong to use the word, but I do agree with Hachface that a lot of people will just throw these words out there. And even if they are right, it's not necessarily helpful. It's basically along the lines of "ha ha I caught you being illogical!" more often than not. That goes against the grain of good discourse, in my opinion.

    I guess I don't get what exactly you guys are against here. Are you just against people just obliquely saying "that's a strawman, buddy!" or are you against the use of the language altogether?

    What's wrong with calling a strawman a strawman? Sure, we can discuss the phenomenon in a way that doesn't actually use the word, but... but we have the language. And it's helpful. It's jargon, it allows us to use one or two words instead of ten or twenty.

    Loren Michael on
    2ezikn6.jpg
  • DrezDrez Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    _J_ wrote: »
    Drez wrote: »
    Sometimes, people will say something like "ad hominem!" or "that's a strawman" without any supporting text. True? Possibly. Helpful? Usually not.

    Usually, supporting text is met with TL;DR.

    If we're to provide 15-page theses to support our posts, no one will read them.

    Exaggerating the suggestions people make to ridiculousness is another problem here.

    You seem to be stuck in some kind of either/or dichotomy no matter what suggestion is made here. I'm not saying to write a 15 page thesis, I'm talking about a short but sufficient explanation. There's a wide gulf between "no supporting text" and "15 pages of supporting text."

    Drez on
  • DrezDrez Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Drez wrote: »
    Hachface wrote: »
    I am not in favor of logical fallacies -- what kind moron would be? However in practice I think having the list of them stickied on the main page fails to do anything other than give people pretexts to dismiss other posters. Again, it turns into obnoxious point-scoring.

    I agree with Hachface here.

    Sometimes, people will say something like "ad hominem!" or "that's a strawman" without any supporting text. True? Possibly. Helpful? Usually not.

    I mean, you don't even need to use those words. If you really want to express why you feel someone is arguing with something you didn't actually say (strawman), you can discuss that in a way that doesn't even use the word "strawman."

    I'm not saying it's wrong to use the word, but I do agree with Hachface that a lot of people will just throw these words out there. And even if they are right, it's not necessarily helpful. It's basically along the lines of "ha ha I caught you being illogical!" more often than not. That goes against the grain of good discourse, in my opinion.

    I guess I don't get what exactly you guys are against here. Are you just against people just obliquely saying "that's a strawman, buddy!" or are you against the use of the language altogether?

    What's wrong with calling a strawman a strawman? Sure, we can discuss the phenomenon in a way that doesn't actually use the word, but... but we have the language. And it's helpful. It's jargon, it allows us to use one or two words instead of ten or twenty.

    Can't speak for the others, but what I'm against is people saying "that's a strawman, buddy" and nothing else.

    I'm not against actually pointing out that an argument is a strawman argument (if it is) or even using the word. But if you just pop into a thread and throw the word out there, or even if you're the person having the alleged strawman argument levied against you, I don't think it's too much to ask for a little follow-up beyond "that's a strawman."

    So, I'm not against the jargon. I'm against throwing jargon around with no explanation of why you think the argument is a strawman argument. I think knowing the jargon lends itself to just throwing the word out and nothing else, yes, but I'm not against its use, I'm just against its use in a dismissive, useless way.

    Drez on
  • japanjapan Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    I guess I don't get what exactly you guys are against here. Are you just against people just obliquely saying "that's a strawman, buddy!" or are you against the use of the language altogether?

    What's wrong with calling a strawman a strawman? Sure, we can discuss the phenomenon in a way that doesn't actually use the word, but... but we have the language. And it's helpful. It's jargon, it allows us to use one or two words instead of ten or twenty.

    For me, it's usually the way in which the accusation of strawmanning is used to completely dismiss any counterexample or argument.

    The tendency is for people to simply assert that a given post strawmans their argument and refuse to respond to it. That's unhelpful because, as long as we're assuming good faith to a certain extent, it would be better for that person to provide at least some explanation as to why they don't think their argument is being properly represented.

    Further, if they're doing that, there's really no reason to make the accusation in the first place.

    japan on
  • Loren MichaelLoren Michael Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    japan wrote: »
    I guess I don't get what exactly you guys are against here. Are you just against people just obliquely saying "that's a strawman, buddy!" or are you against the use of the language altogether?

    What's wrong with calling a strawman a strawman? Sure, we can discuss the phenomenon in a way that doesn't actually use the word, but... but we have the language. And it's helpful. It's jargon, it allows us to use one or two words instead of ten or twenty.

    For me, it's usually the way in which the accusation of strawmanning is used to completely dismiss any counterexample or argument.

    The tendency is for people to simply assert that a given post strawmans their argument and refuse to respond to it. That's unhelpful because, as long as we're assuming good faith to a certain extent, it would be better for that person to provide at least some explanation as to why they don't think their argument is being properly represented.

    Further, if they're doing that, there's really no reason to make the accusation in the first place.

    I see. Well, I think pointing out a strawman is only useful and helpful if it's actually pointed out. Mentioning that there's one present is abotu as helpful as pointing out that there is in fact a needle in a haystack. If there is an ad hominem or a strawman, it needs to be outlined.

    Loren Michael on
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  • Loren MichaelLoren Michael Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    This is probably going to be read as concern trolling, but...

    I guess I failed in the immigration thread. Is there a better way to resolve my dispute with legionofone? I don't really want to abandon this poster, as he's one of the few people actually arguing an opposing point of view.

    Loren Michael on
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  • DetharinDetharin Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    What you need to understand is that you have a bias, as does legionofone. You admit your position on an issue causes problems for certain people. When you say X suffer so Y benefit, but its ok economically because Y gets more benefit you are distancing yourself from the actual people involved. For the people living in the American SouthWest the problems of immigration are very real, very present, and depending on what you do, or where you are in life how much they directly effect them.

    When you make the argument that the problems are "not that bad" from a position far removed from the problem, and then dismiss the every day realities that a group of people are suffering under because "economics says this is a good thing" of course he is going to have a problem with it.

    Your position directly hurts a certain percentage of Americans, and directly leads to very real problems in their every day life. Some of us are directly, or indirectly affected by the "not that bad" problems that come from the way illegal immigration is currently being handled on the state and federal level.

    Your problem with LegionOfOne is that you are arguing what should be done from an academic standpoint, he is arguing from a practical one. Your are divided by your positions, and life experiences. It is much easier to say "Fuck group X herd them all on a bus and drive it off a cliff" when you are not the one having to do the herding, or the bus driving. Just like it is hard to say "Fuck group Y, let group X prosper" when you, your family, your friends, or the people you identify with are group Y.

    Detharin on
    If I was kidnapped, woke up in a lab, told they were going to replace my vocal cords with those of Tony Jay, and lock me in a sound booth until the day I die I would look those bastards right in the eye and say "Alright you sons of bitches lets do this. This one is for the children."
  • Loren MichaelLoren Michael Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    I'm not going to argue immigration specifics in this thread. My problem is specifically related to a correlation=causation claim. How am I to resolve a situation when I point out that one is not the other, and I'm cast as (to paraphrase) "not being receptive to any evidence"? This seems like a declaration that the conversation is over, and I don't see any way around it.

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  • DetharinDetharin Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    When you tell someone who cannot find a job because his industry had been primarily overrun with illegal immigrants due to the nature of the industry (such as construction) that it is not the illegal immigrants preventing them from finding a job they are obviously going to look at you have no idea what you are talking about.

    An argument that consists of "The very real problems you experience in your every day life are not that bad because my econ books says so." is not going to take you very far.

    Imagine telling someone dying of cancer that the pain is not that bad because it should only be somewhere between 4 and 7 on a pain scale, which should be easily manageable.

    You have acknowledged your policies would negatively effect a percentage of the American population, you are now face to face with one of the people affected. Demanding studies, and quoting academic research does you absolutely no good in the face of life experience. Again this is why we see so many problems with the enforcement of illegal immigration issues, those who are directly effected want something done, those not directly effected wonder what all the fuss is about and thump their econ books.

    Detharin on
    If I was kidnapped, woke up in a lab, told they were going to replace my vocal cords with those of Tony Jay, and lock me in a sound booth until the day I die I would look those bastards right in the eye and say "Alright you sons of bitches lets do this. This one is for the children."
  • ronyaronya Arrrrrf. the ivory tower's basementRegistered User regular
    edited August 2010
    At some point you do have to shake someone and yell "ANECDOTES DO NOT TRUMP DATA" in their ear, though, and the kind of people likely to wave ancedotal fallacies around like that to begin with are almost always the kind to take it as a personal insult. Because, gasp, their life experiences aren't representative of the general population.

    I'm not sure there's a nice way to break the idea to someone.

    ronya on
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  • ThejakemanThejakeman Registered User
    edited August 2010
    ronya wrote: »
    At some point you do have to shake someone and yell "ANECDOTES DO NOT TRUMP DATA" in their ear, though, and the kind of people likely to wave ancedotal fallacies around like that to begin with are almost always the kind to take it as a personal insult. Because, gasp, their life experiences aren't representative of the general population.

    I'm not sure there's a nice way to break the idea to someone.

    Of course there isn't. You dismiss them as a statistical anomaly. No one with a healthy ego and underdeveloped sense of place in the world will put up with that.

    Thejakeman on
  • The CatThe Cat Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited August 2010
    Feral wrote: »
    Drez wrote: »
    Okay so let's say you have some guy. Let's call him Pepper17. Pepper17 comes into a thread asserting something about copyright law. You know he doesn't know what the fuck he's talking about. But the guy is adamant.

    You have two choices. You could rationally and comprehensively impart your knowledge to Pepper17 and then choose to include or exclude him from the conversation based on his reaction (assuming you weren't a smarmosaur about it), or you could dismiss him right off the bat?

    I maintain that your "adamant layman" as I'll call him, while often arrogant, still isn't worth dismissing off the bat.

    And I'm not suggesting that we entertain people infinitely. If someone just doesn't get it and goes on and on and on and on and on, then of course that person is bringing down the level of discourse.

    I'm primarily talking about this off-the-bat dismissal of people that immediately display their ignorance. The thing is, there's nothing inherently wrong with ignorance on a forum. What's wrong is when people couple insistent arrogance with their ignorance. Nobody has to tolerate that. But I think a little tolerance before automatic dismissal almost always promotes a positive discussion culture rather than a negative one.

    Okay, everything you've said here makes total sense to me.

    Sure, but you can only do that so many times. I think those of us who've been posting a long time get sick of subject-101 and jump past it to another level of conversation, which can throw newer participants off. I have a certain amount of sympathy for that, but I have no goddamn sympathy at all for the large class of posters who insist on mouthing off on a topic before employing the google-machine and then spend pages trying to defend their ignorance as if they have a right to it.

    Me, I stick to what I know, and if I'm in a thread I'm interested in but not experienced with, I keep quiet while I do research. If I can't find the answer myself, I ask questions.

    The Cat on
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  • The CatThe Cat Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited August 2010
    Hachface wrote: »
    As long as we're being meta, I want to bring up one of my pet peeves that gets peevier by the day.

    Namely, too many posters are taking entirely too much glee in pointing out straw men, argumenta ad hominem, appeals to authority, and so forth. Logical Fallacy Bingo gets pretty tiresome, especially since half the time these terms are misapplied. I kind of wish that section would be taken out of the rules thread. Instead of providing guidelines for the debate it really just devolves arguments into one upsmanship and point-scoring.

    I always wanted to be able to infract people for making ad-hom accusations where none existed, but we'd have like 5 people left in the forum if that were the case. Still and all, those fallacies are listed in the rules thread for a reason. They're shitty arguments that no-one should use.

    The Cat on
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  • The CatThe Cat Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited August 2010
    Anecdotal data has a place, though. You can deal with it without dismissing people's lives.

    The Cat on
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  • ronyaronya Arrrrrf. the ivory tower's basementRegistered User regular
    edited August 2010
    The Cat wrote: »
    Anecdotal data has a place, though. You can deal with it without dismissing people's lives.

    Yes, how do you bring up the point gently?

    ronya on
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  • The CatThe Cat Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited August 2010
    ronya wrote: »
    The Cat wrote: »
    Anecdotal data has a place, though. You can deal with it without dismissing people's lives.

    Yes, how do you bring up the point gently?

    eh?

    The Cat on
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  • ronyaronya Arrrrrf. the ivory tower's basementRegistered User regular
    edited August 2010
    The Cat wrote: »
    ronya wrote: »
    The Cat wrote: »
    Anecdotal data has a place, though. You can deal with it without dismissing people's lives.

    Yes, how do you bring up the point gently?

    eh?

    The bolded bit.

    ronya on
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  • The CatThe Cat Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited August 2010
    ronya wrote: »
    The Cat wrote: »
    ronya wrote: »
    The Cat wrote: »
    Anecdotal data has a place, though. You can deal with it without dismissing people's lives.

    Yes, how do you bring up the point gently?

    eh?

    The bolded bit.

    I'm still kind of confused here, but you're asking how to point out that anecdotes aren't data? Its easy: "I accept your experience, but it contradicts all the available research, so what happened to you probably doesn't happen very often". Or, more often, "I've never experienced anything like your story, but I'm not going to call you a liar for telling it".

    That latter is the important one to me; in a lot of the gender threads I post in, there's a kneejerk dismissal by a lot of posters when someone posts a story about being harassed or treated poorly because of their gender. Part of it is because we're all pretty nice people and we don't like to think that other people aren't so nice, but a lot of it takes the form of 'oh, you're too sensitive' or whatever other dismissive bullshit is the flavour of the month. Those aren't posts about how the anecdote doesn't fit the data; those are flat dismissals of personal experience. They're de facto accusations of lying, and doing that is never going to move a discussion forward.

    The Cat on
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  • KastanjKastanj __BANNED USERS
    edited August 2010
    Don't respond to somewhat exaggerated or crude claims with even more exaggerated and crude denunciations or negations. There is nothing to be gained from escalation.

    Being impersonal is impossible, but try to make a post that isn't only written to make you feel good. Don't consider your own enjoyment paramount.

    Don't get indignant. Angry or outraged is one thing, indignation another.

    Use anecdotes when the subject or the current discussion makes anecdotal experiences more useful and valuable.

    Think for yourself, and if you wonder whether a person left out some specification or caveat out of ignorance or forgetfulness, ask before you go nuts with the smugness!

    Kastanj on
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  • The CatThe Cat Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited August 2010
    Anyway, as I move through the previous pages, I will add that mythago is awesome, and the debate about emenenemennenee seems to have skipped over the fact that he's openly admitted to trolling on more than one occasion.

    The Cat on
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  • The CatThe Cat Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited August 2010
    enc0re wrote: »
    emnmnme wrote: »
    I'm pretty sure you mean the tags would be private but I can't help but imagine what it would be like it the tags were public. If we did that, I'd have a whole alphabet of scarlet letters covering my avatar from all sorts of different posters.

    The funny thing is despite my years posting here, despite all the enemies I've accumulated on the boards, I've never been jailed or infracted. Evidence that I am a very civil poster.

    Uh, dude. I'm pretty sure you've been infracted twice. Correct me if I'm wrong.

    Here and here.

    Its evidence that he relies on weasel words and similar tactics that work to goad others rather than ever openly declaring allegiance to a particular viewpoint and acting to defend it. Lest anyone take that as a personal attack, its more of an illustration of general principle: Its really easy for anyone to avoid infraction here when they refuse to openly stand for or against anything, and stick to sniping from the sidelines. Most infractions here are and have always been handed out for open hostility exhibited by forumers with strong opinions, because its easy to police. The more insidious forms of dickery are really difficult to police without an amount of effort than frankly can't be expected from a skeleton staff of volunteers. The mental energy required to keep up with that kind of shit is forbidding.

    The Cat on
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