Help needed in setting the tone: Who's in favor of abrasive behavior?

#43
Why is it considered civil to call some people stuck on stupid? What is the standard of civility we're using?
Seriously though - let's put this directly on the table for discussion. I get that many proponents want to move beyond the "is it real" debate and I really don't take issue with that. It may be that pursuing those angles might actually help put to bed that issue, but even if it doesn't I don't have an issue with people exploring these issues from that perspective.

But from my perspective there are a lot of important issues that remain unresolved in the parapsychological literature to date. Myself and others on this foum have advanced what I think are well thought out reasons to be concerned that the issue should not necessarily be considered solved based on the papers presented to date.

Now, we may be wrong in that conclusion. There may be things that we're missing - I'll certainly speak for myself and say that I'm sure there are. That being said I know I've put thought into my comments, I know the others have as well. To me there are some real issues that haven't been addressed or even discussed all that much. Some of these issues have been raised in recent publicatons ins parapsychological journals by parapsychologists.

The point is: the concerns are not stupid. The thought that goes into the analysis is not stupid. The arguments are not silly or stupid. Calling it "stuck on stupid" is wrong and insulting. It also makes it easy to justify ignoring arguments that are valid. It is a bias producing catch-phrase. It is as inappropriate as labelling everything parapsychological "woo-woo".

What am I missing here?
 
#44
Why is it considered civil to call some people stuck on stupid? What is the standard of civility we're using?
Well, since this isn't a mod+ thread (yet), it behooves me to point out that you won't be tracking anything statistically except a selection bias.
... There's no clarity in pushing a button, especially if you think innuendo is in play (what if it's not?).
... How is a pile of button pushes without explanation an adult form of communication?
I've been paying attention to these types of posts. I think the present thread has run its course, not because we've settled much but because I understand now that the scope needs to expand if we're going to do anything other than apply a small band-aid.

What I see, speaking as neutrally as I can, is an ugly knot of divergent goals, manifold motivations (within each of us, most likely), hurt feelings and defensiveness. I took all this seriously and became befuddled - even more than usual:eek:.

So, in an uncharacteristic burst of diligence, I've been working on a global analysis of the larger problem all this implies. I'm hoping to pour some oil on these troubled waters and I hope others will join in - in that spirit. I uncovered a lot of useful things - clarifying things, for me at least, but I think for others as well. I will start a thread in the Mud Pit ;) (BvS) to offer this analysis.

I plan to switch the term I'm using from abrasive to annoying, which is still subjective but in a broader and more useful way as I'll show. I intend to show why "Believer vs Skeptic" has no information content and should ideally be replaced, and why "Stuck on Stupid" should just simply be replaced. Then we'll go on from there.

This analysis will necessarily be incomplete and therefore require a group effort if the will is there, but it has helped me a lot and I hope it helps other people. I'm especially hoping it helps the 'skeptics' and that they can build something useful on the foundation I think this information will provide.

You'll find it later today or early tomorrow at the latest. I'm going to stop watching this thread for the most part. Thanks very much to everybody for every post.
 
#47
If you think I'm aggressive then I'm not sure what you mean by aggressive. Take a look at my lancet thread though, tell me what you think after reading it.
I disagreed with you about your Lancet thread. I posted there several times explaining why I think the conclusions of the Dr. Pim van Lommel, who authored the paper, trump your apologetics. Why do you feel like I need to do more? Why are you bringing this up in another thread?
 
#48
Hi John: seeing as you've mentioned it here, and I mentioned it elsewhere (also without naming names), I think it's okay to say I'm the one you've been having conversations with in the background, and like Alex, I don't want to see people like you leave: you have a strong scientific background and are a definite asset to the forum.

The thing is this: Alex has his vision for the nature and purpose of this forum, and it includes space for sceptics. I support him in that vision, and have been vocal about that in the recent past. However, that's not to say that I would approach things the same way as he does were I in his place. There are certain people who have posted here (mostly, but not all, sceptics) whom I'd have banned outright and not have given relatively short sabbaticals.

But hey, Alex is in charge and so I have to find my own way of dealing with these people. He isn't likely to change his approach, and I don't feel inclined to argue with him about it. So I'm focussing on making this an environment conducive to what I want to get out of it. These certain people are ignoring the Mod+ distinction and that doesn't surprise me, because the aim isn't to engage in genuine dialogue, but to screw things up, basically because they like to behave like bastards and rejoice in doing so: few manners, little consideration or intention to learn. Now and then, admittedly, I have given them short shrift with a pointed piece of my mind.

Alex, I'm not really the type to be frequently complaining in the back channel: I'm not even using the dislike icon because I've made a resolution not to. I might just occasionally use the disagree icon in a neutral way, but no further than that. I find the ignore facility the very best option for me. The people who want to disrupt normal services then simply disappear: it's much better than in the old forum, because even quotes of their postings disappear, and there's hardly any temptation to weigh in, making things all the better for me. That's not to say I don't enjoy vigorous debate: I do, and we often get it because proponents are very far from a homogeneous bunch of sheep in an echo chamber. The new ignore feature is really working for me, and people only get on my ignore list when eventually they get sufficiently far up my nose that I realise that attempting constructive dialogue is completely pointless.

You have your vision, like I said, and I support you: it's because I do so that I don't argue the toss with you. The upshot is that I tailor the environment to suit me so that there's no cause or temptation to argue. You have things the way you want them, and all power to your elbow, but so do I, and in that way can square the circle. If things change and the disruptors are brought in check, then I may change my tactics, but for now this is where I stand.
this is very thoughtful... with many good points. one tweak to what you're saying... it's not so much that I have a vision for this kind of community as I've evolved into it. for example, I don't know what drives some of the skeptical stuff you're talking about. I used to think that I did, but after really digging into the Skeptiko thing I realize that I don't. I do recognize a couple of things:
1. we all can aggravate each other at times, so we have to tolerate some of this stuff just out of decency.
2. they are the majority... their position is the status quo. we need to listen or we'll convince ourselves the paradigm shift is eminent :)
3. you gotta be it to see it. I resist this idea, but always find it to be true :)
 
#49
Perhaps I don't understand the "report" button, but it seems a blunt instrument for this. I assumed it was for flagging a strikingly egregious post rather than tracking a pattern of over-the-line but less than egregious stuff. It seems that a negative tally that grows steadily as the abuses continue is more to the point in the latter instance.
I think report will work... just be thoughtful when using it.
 
#50
Part of the problem is that you can delete votes on your posts. They are meaningless.


If you want clarity, then people have to post what they think, not just click buttons. Also, that tends to reduce the number of complaints because it takes more work, which is a good thing.

~~ Paul
no you can't. Linda discovered this loophole :) but it's been closed. I like the ratings... they are a quick way of adding my voice to a conversation that I may not have time (or desire) to jump all the way into.
 
#51
this is very thoughtful... with many good points. one tweak to what you're saying... it's not so much that I have a vision for this kind of community as I've evolved into it. for example, I don't know what drives some of the skeptical stuff you're talking about. I used to think that I did, but after really digging into the Skeptiko thing I realize that I don't. I do recognize a couple of things:
1. we all can aggravate each other at times, so we have to tolerate some of this stuff just out of decency.
2. they are the majority... their position is the status quo. we need to listen or we'll convince ourselves the paradigm shift is eminent :)
3. you gotta be it to see it. I resist this idea, but always find it to be true :)
I don't suppose I know why some of the sceptics do what they do. I mean, would I go to a sceptic forum and out-post everyone there (always assuming they'd let me)? It's a mystery, and the only way I could see myself doing it was if I took delight in trying to cause maximal mayhem. As it is, I don't bother going to sceptical forums at all: what a waste of time that would be.

I put up with some sceptics, and some needlessly argumentative proponents, but at a certain point, I put them on ignore: the point where they're saying nothing new or of interest and just employing big wooden spoons.

I wish I knew what "you gotta be it to see it" meant!
 
#52
I disagreed with you about your Lancet thread. I posted there several times explaining why I think the conclusions of the Dr. Pim van Lommel, who authored the paper, trump your apologetics. Why do you feel like I need to do more? Why are you bringing this up in another thread?
No you haven't. I'll keep pushing you until you give my argument the respect of actually reading it and responding. You call me stupid over and over, you dislike my posts, and you don't have the respect to even take the time to really read what I wrote and tell me specifically what you disagree with my arguments.

Are you not willing to take 5 minutes to justify why you think my argument is silly and stupid and apologetic? You have accused my argument as being silly, stupid, and apologetics. You have not backed it up other than referring to material that doesn't even touch upon my argument. If you are not willing to back it up then I would ask you to withdraw your comment that my argument is silly, stupid and apologetics as you and Andy would require if a skeptic made the same accusation without basis towards a proponent.

Yes its your site but that shouldn't justify baseless accusations of one of your regular members. When I disagree with something you've said I state in detail why. It's not unreasonable to expect the same in return. And please recall it was you who asked us to review these studies in detail on the old site.
 
#53
I don't suppose I know why some of the sceptics do what they do. I mean, would I go to a sceptic forum and out-post everyone there (always assuming they'd let me)? It's a mystery, and the only way I could see myself doing it was if I took delight in trying to cause maximal mayhem. As it is, I don't bother going to sceptical forums at all: what a waste of time that would be.

I put up with some sceptics, and some needlessly argumentative proponents, but at a certain point, I put them on ignore: the point where they're saying nothing new or of interest and just employing big wooden spoons.

I wish I knew what "you gotta be it to see it" meant!
It's not a mystery why I post so much. It interests me and its a distraction from the shit of my life.
 
#54
I am so sick of the people who troll me on this forum. I make my arguments in good faith. All I ask is respect in return! Is that so damn hard for you people????????
 
#55
I am so sick of the people who troll me on this forum. I make my arguments in good faith. All I ask is respect in return! Is that so damn hard for you people????????
You jump up and down demanding attention like a kid, to the point where you invade other threads to insist people read what you've written elsewhere... and if we continue to ignore you, you have a tantrum...but if we respond, then you accuse us of being trolls????

Have you thought about spending less time in online forums and perhaps trying out mediation or walks in nature instead?
 
#56
I'd like to point out that some of us have stayed away from the "Believer and Skeptics Debate Forum" because we just aren't interested in going there. To have someone come to this forum with the sole purpose of insisting we have to go there is particularly annoying. In Arouet's case, didn't someone actually contact van Lommel himself for feedback on Arouet's behalf? What more could someone ask for? It's pretty cool that someone went to all that trouble and that they were able to get a response from a big name scientist to some anonymous guy in a forum! I'd be honored if someone did that for me. I would be thankful. I wouldn't be going around complaining that not enough people were paying attention to my posts.
 
#57
K9, I appreciate that you are unfamiliar with the background and so may not realize that your posts are a bit unwarranted. Alex asked for the van Lommel study to be analyzed and then made some dismissive remarks when Arouet went through the trouble to do so. This isn't coming as a demand for attention out-of-the-blue.

It was nice of you to suggest some pleasant activities for Arouet. And I thank you for staying away from discussions which aren't interesting to you (re: your comment about the B vs. S forum).

Linda
 
#58
This isn't coming as a demand for attention out-of-the-blue.
It sounds like a personality conflict between Arouet and Alex that would be better off being dealt with privately rather than getting the whole forum involved. Arouet's rant about trolls seems unwarranted in any case.
 
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