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On Thread Derailment and the Nature of Forums

bsh1
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1/25/2015 11:37:19 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
Pompous thread title aside, there is a legitimate point to be made here about what the forums should be.

First of all, it's important to point out that debates and forums are and should be separate beasts. If the two were the same, why bother having both. We have forums because they provide different services to the site than debates do, and vice versa. And, in the context of a debating community, where the exchange, evaluation, and exploration of ideas is a paramount value, forums and debates serve very different missions.

Forums are inherently conversational. A thread may start out talking about Evolution and the metamorphose into a lively discussion about what caused the extinction of the dinosaurs. This is how conversations work--they are organic and naturally fluid. Just as topics on the forums shift with the tide of the conversation (as well as who is participating in the conversation), so too does this play out IRL. Debates, on the other hand, are far more structured and rigid. Topicality is the order of the day, and fluidity is discouraged.

Both forums and debates allow us to achieve the sites core values in different ways. Forums focus on breadth of information--any single discussion can cover a wide range of topics on a variety of issues, and can involve multiple members more directly. Forums also serve to promote community on the site; telling jokes in a thread may lead to the threads derailment, but they oftentimes serve as important ways for users to express different sides of their personalities on the site, and to interact with users in a less formal way.

Debates, on the other hand, are far more specific and precise. They don't usually have the breadth of coverage that forums do, but they make up for it in depth.

"Rigidifying" the forums by working to diminish their fluidity makes them more like debates. It takes away the important conversational aspects of the forums that allow them to contribute to the site in a beneficial and unique way. Ultimately, the proposed policy of derailment treats the forums more like debates than forums, and is thus not something I am keen to support.
Live Long and Prosper

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"Twilight isn't just about obtuse metaphors between cannibalism and premarital sex, it also teaches us the futility of hope." - Raisor

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bsh1
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1/25/2015 11:41:57 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
My earlier explanations of this sentiment:

http://www.debate.org...
http://www.debate.org...
Live Long and Prosper

I'm a Bish.


"Twilight isn't just about obtuse metaphors between cannibalism and premarital sex, it also teaches us the futility of hope." - Raisor

"[Bsh1] is the Guinan of DDO." - ButterCatX

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bsh1
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1/25/2015 11:44:59 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/25/2015 11:43:17 PM, YYW wrote:
I completely agree. Very well said.

Gracias, mi amor :)
Live Long and Prosper

I'm a Bish.


"Twilight isn't just about obtuse metaphors between cannibalism and premarital sex, it also teaches us the futility of hope." - Raisor

"[Bsh1] is the Guinan of DDO." - ButterCatX

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YYW
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1/25/2015 11:49:14 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/25/2015 11:44:59 PM, bsh1 wrote:
At 1/25/2015 11:43:17 PM, YYW wrote:
I completely agree. Very well said.

Gracias, mi amor :)

<3
Tsar of DDO
Roukezian
Posts: 1,711
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1/25/2015 11:58:12 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
Human discussion is highly unpredictable and unexpectedly enjoyable when it submerges into ad hoc tangents that arouse suspicion and interest, as it is portrayed in the great movie, My Dinner with Andre. To ask for the mechanization or rigidification of discussion is to ask for the diminhsment of the changeable and unpredictable spirit, colorfulness and fluidity of human thought.
bsh1
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1/26/2015 12:13:35 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/25/2015 11:58:12 PM, Roukezian wrote:
Human discussion is highly unpredictable and unexpectedly enjoyable when it submerges into ad hoc tangents that arouse suspicion and interest, as it is portrayed in the great movie, My Dinner with Andre. To ask for the mechanization or rigidification of discussion is to ask for the diminhsment of the changeable and unpredictable spirit, colorfulness and fluidity of human thought.

Agreed.
Live Long and Prosper

I'm a Bish.


"Twilight isn't just about obtuse metaphors between cannibalism and premarital sex, it also teaches us the futility of hope." - Raisor

"[Bsh1] is the Guinan of DDO." - ButterCatX

Follow the DDOlympics
: http://www.debate.org...

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Wylted
Posts: 21,167
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1/26/2015 12:38:35 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
DDO is a unique beast in terms of forums. Most places want to keep threads on topic and if the conversation evolves moving those things to PM or a separate thread.

Some threads lose their usefulness in terms of being able to referance them to do some research on a specific topic (example proper RFDs), if the conversation evolves a lot of relevant data will be lost and it's value as referance material diminishes.
bluesteel
Posts: 12,301
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1/26/2015 12:39:08 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/25/2015 11:37:19 PM, bsh1 wrote:
Pompous thread title aside, there is a legitimate point to be made here about what the forums should be.

First of all, it's important to point out that debates and forums are and should be separate beasts. If the two were the same, why bother having both. We have forums because they provide different services to the site than debates do, and vice versa. And, in the context of a debating community, where the exchange, evaluation, and exploration of ideas is a paramount value, forums and debates serve very different missions.

Forums are inherently conversational. A thread may start out talking about Evolution and the metamorphose into a lively discussion about what caused the extinction of the dinosaurs. This is how conversations work--they are organic and naturally fluid. Just as topics on the forums shift with the tide of the conversation (as well as who is participating in the conversation), so too does this play out IRL. Debates, on the other hand, are far more structured and rigid. Topicality is the order of the day, and fluidity is discouraged.

Both forums and debates allow us to achieve the sites core values in different ways. Forums focus on breadth of information--any single discussion can cover a wide range of topics on a variety of issues, and can involve multiple members more directly. Forums also serve to promote community on the site; telling jokes in a thread may lead to the threads derailment, but they oftentimes serve as important ways for users to express different sides of their personalities on the site, and to interact with users in a less formal way.

Debates, on the other hand, are far more specific and precise. They don't usually have the breadth of coverage that forums do, but they make up for it in depth.

"Rigidifying" the forums by working to diminish their fluidity makes them more like debates. It takes away the important conversational aspects of the forums that allow them to contribute to the site in a beneficial and unique way. Ultimately, the proposed policy of derailment treats the forums more like debates than forums, and is thus not something I am keen to support.

I agree that the Forums are more conversational.

In my mind, the mod policy is aimed at a particularly egregious type of derailment. Don't worry, I'll give examples.

== Example A ==

You are hanging out with your friends. Friend #1 says, "Oh my god, did you guys see that New York Times article about the Senate voting 98-1 that global warming was not a hoax." Friend #2: "Yeah, but that wasn't as great as it sounds. Right after that, the Republicans voted that global warming was not human caused. They were just acknowledging the irrefutable point that the Earth is getting warmer." Friend #3: "Why do people deny basic science???" Friend #1: "Umm, these are the same people who deny half of what you learn in a decent biology course, i.e. evolution."

Cue discussion about evolution. The conversation has evolved from a Senate bill to religion. That's fine. Nothing wrong with that.

== Example B ==

Friend #1: "So did you guys hear about this Senate vote that......" RANDOM DRUNK STRANGER FROM THE BAR INTERJECTS: "OMG, DID YOU GUYZ KNOW THAT I AM A PROPHET SENT BY GOD. HE WANTS ME TO PREACH HIS MESSAGE TO YOU. HE SAYS YOU MUST HEED MY WORDS BECAUSE THEY ARE HIS WORDS. HE SPOKE TO ME ABOUT EZEKIAL 7:28 WHICH SAYS THAT THE LAMB OF GOD" Friend #2: "Dude, what's your problem... Get out of here. We were trying to have a discussion...."

The thread derailment policy is aimed at the normal social convention of telling a completely random person who is saying something totally irrelevant to F*** off. It is completely consistent with what you would do in real life. It is not anathema to the forums continuing to be a place for more conversational tones.
You can't reason someone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into - Jonathan Swift (paraphrase)
YYW
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1/26/2015 12:41:30 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/26/2015 12:39:08 AM, bluesteel wrote:
At 1/25/2015 11:37:19 PM, bsh1 wrote:
Pompous thread title aside, there is a legitimate point to be made here about what the forums should be.

First of all, it's important to point out that debates and forums are and should be separate beasts. If the two were the same, why bother having both. We have forums because they provide different services to the site than debates do, and vice versa. And, in the context of a debating community, where the exchange, evaluation, and exploration of ideas is a paramount value, forums and debates serve very different missions.

Forums are inherently conversational. A thread may start out talking about Evolution and the metamorphose into a lively discussion about what caused the extinction of the dinosaurs. This is how conversations work--they are organic and naturally fluid. Just as topics on the forums shift with the tide of the conversation (as well as who is participating in the conversation), so too does this play out IRL. Debates, on the other hand, are far more structured and rigid. Topicality is the order of the day, and fluidity is discouraged.

Both forums and debates allow us to achieve the sites core values in different ways. Forums focus on breadth of information--any single discussion can cover a wide range of topics on a variety of issues, and can involve multiple members more directly. Forums also serve to promote community on the site; telling jokes in a thread may lead to the threads derailment, but they oftentimes serve as important ways for users to express different sides of their personalities on the site, and to interact with users in a less formal way.

Debates, on the other hand, are far more specific and precise. They don't usually have the breadth of coverage that forums do, but they make up for it in depth.

"Rigidifying" the forums by working to diminish their fluidity makes them more like debates. It takes away the important conversational aspects of the forums that allow them to contribute to the site in a beneficial and unique way. Ultimately, the proposed policy of derailment treats the forums more like debates than forums, and is thus not something I am keen to support.

I agree that the Forums are more conversational.

In my mind, the mod policy is aimed at a particularly egregious type of derailment. Don't worry, I'll give examples.

== Example A ==

You are hanging out with your friends. Friend #1 says, "Oh my god, did you guys see that New York Times article about the Senate voting 98-1 that global warming was not a hoax." Friend #2: "Yeah, but that wasn't as great as it sounds. Right after that, the Republicans voted that global warming was not human caused. They were just acknowledging the irrefutable point that the Earth is getting warmer." Friend #3: "Why do people deny basic science???" Friend #1: "Umm, these are the same people who deny half of what you learn in a decent biology course, i.e. evolution."

Cue discussion about evolution. The conversation has evolved from a Senate bill to religion. That's fine. Nothing wrong with that.

== Example B ==

Friend #1: "So did you guys hear about this Senate vote that......" RANDOM DRUNK STRANGER FROM THE BAR INTERJECTS: "OMG, DID YOU GUYZ KNOW THAT I AM A PROPHET SENT BY GOD. HE WANTS ME TO PREACH HIS MESSAGE TO YOU. HE SAYS YOU MUST HEED MY WORDS BECAUSE THEY ARE HIS WORDS. HE SPOKE TO ME ABOUT EZEKIAL 7:28 WHICH SAYS THAT THE LAMB OF GOD" Friend #2: "Dude, what's your problem... Get out of here. We were trying to have a discussion...."

The thread derailment policy is aimed at the normal social convention of telling a completely random person who is saying something totally irrelevant to F*** off. It is completely consistent with what you would do in real life. It is not anathema to the forums continuing to be a place for more conversational tones.

If only spamming weren't already an offense...
Tsar of DDO
YYW
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1/26/2015 12:48:15 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
But in all seriousness the second example is clearly a bad thing... though we don't need this new policy to make it go away. The spamming rules already apply.
Tsar of DDO
bsh1
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1/26/2015 12:48:44 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/26/2015 12:39:08 AM, bluesteel wrote:
At 1/25/2015 11:37:19 PM, bsh1 wrote:
Pompous thread title aside, there is a legitimate point to be made here about what the forums should be.

First of all, it's important to point out that debates and forums are and should be separate beasts. If the two were the same, why bother having both. We have forums because they provide different services to the site than debates do, and vice versa. And, in the context of a debating community, where the exchange, evaluation, and exploration of ideas is a paramount value, forums and debates serve very different missions.

Forums are inherently conversational. A thread may start out talking about Evolution and the metamorphose into a lively discussion about what caused the extinction of the dinosaurs. This is how conversations work--they are organic and naturally fluid. Just as topics on the forums shift with the tide of the conversation (as well as who is participating in the conversation), so too does this play out IRL. Debates, on the other hand, are far more structured and rigid. Topicality is the order of the day, and fluidity is discouraged.

Both forums and debates allow us to achieve the sites core values in different ways. Forums focus on breadth of information--any single discussion can cover a wide range of topics on a variety of issues, and can involve multiple members more directly. Forums also serve to promote community on the site; telling jokes in a thread may lead to the threads derailment, but they oftentimes serve as important ways for users to express different sides of their personalities on the site, and to interact with users in a less formal way.

Debates, on the other hand, are far more specific and precise. They don't usually have the breadth of coverage that forums do, but they make up for it in depth.

"Rigidifying" the forums by working to diminish their fluidity makes them more like debates. It takes away the important conversational aspects of the forums that allow them to contribute to the site in a beneficial and unique way. Ultimately, the proposed policy of derailment treats the forums more like debates than forums, and is thus not something I am keen to support.

I agree that the Forums are more conversational.

In my mind, the mod policy is aimed at a particularly egregious type of derailment. Don't worry, I'll give examples.

Sure, that's what the policy may be aimed at, but the question goes to where that line is drawn. You gave two very clear-cut examples. I am concerned about the examples that lie in the middle--frankly, I am going to assume that there are and will be complaints about examples that fall on murky ground.
Live Long and Prosper

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"Twilight isn't just about obtuse metaphors between cannibalism and premarital sex, it also teaches us the futility of hope." - Raisor

"[Bsh1] is the Guinan of DDO." - ButterCatX

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bluesteel
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1/26/2015 12:53:01 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/26/2015 12:48:15 AM, YYW wrote:
But in all seriousness the second example is clearly a bad thing... though we don't need this new policy to make it go away. The spamming rules already apply.

hmm, let's just make a rule that people with mental illnesses will be mercy banned. So much simpler. Bye BoG, LMGIG, and wrich....

and thett3
You can't reason someone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into - Jonathan Swift (paraphrase)
YYW
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1/26/2015 12:54:36 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/26/2015 12:53:01 AM, bluesteel wrote:
At 1/26/2015 12:48:15 AM, YYW wrote:
But in all seriousness the second example is clearly a bad thing... though we don't need this new policy to make it go away. The spamming rules already apply.

hmm, let's just make a rule that people with mental illnesses will be mercy banned. So much simpler. Bye BoG, LMGIG, and wrich....

I lol'd... and I could probably support that. Think of it as civil commitment... or analogous to it.

and thett3

Awwwww.....
Tsar of DDO
bsh1
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1/26/2015 12:54:36 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/26/2015 12:53:01 AM, bluesteel wrote:
At 1/26/2015 12:48:15 AM, YYW wrote:
But in all seriousness the second example is clearly a bad thing... though we don't need this new policy to make it go away. The spamming rules already apply.

hmm, let's just make a rule that people with mental illnesses will be mercy banned. So much simpler. Bye BoG, LMGIG, and wrich....

No! They're totally models of sanity.

and thett3

He really needs to be perm-banned. I mean, Texans are all crazy (unless they're attractive...).
Live Long and Prosper

I'm a Bish.


"Twilight isn't just about obtuse metaphors between cannibalism and premarital sex, it also teaches us the futility of hope." - Raisor

"[Bsh1] is the Guinan of DDO." - ButterCatX

Follow the DDOlympics
: http://www.debate.org...

Open Debate Topics Project: http://www.debate.org...
bluesteel
Posts: 12,301
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1/26/2015 12:56:07 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/26/2015 12:54:36 AM, bsh1 wrote:
At 1/26/2015 12:53:01 AM, bluesteel wrote:
At 1/26/2015 12:48:15 AM, YYW wrote:
But in all seriousness the second example is clearly a bad thing... though we don't need this new policy to make it go away. The spamming rules already apply.

hmm, let's just make a rule that people with mental illnesses will be mercy banned. So much simpler. Bye BoG, LMGIG, and wrich....

No! They're totally models of sanity.

and thett3

He really needs to be perm-banned. I mean, Texans are all crazy (unless they're attractive...).

And then they're just crazy ... hot
You can't reason someone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into - Jonathan Swift (paraphrase)
bsh1
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1/26/2015 12:59:32 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/26/2015 12:56:07 AM, bluesteel wrote:
At 1/26/2015 12:54:36 AM, bsh1 wrote:

He really needs to be perm-banned. I mean, Texans are all crazy (unless they're attractive...).

And then they're just crazy ... hot

All except thett, ofc.
Live Long and Prosper

I'm a Bish.


"Twilight isn't just about obtuse metaphors between cannibalism and premarital sex, it also teaches us the futility of hope." - Raisor

"[Bsh1] is the Guinan of DDO." - ButterCatX

Follow the DDOlympics
: http://www.debate.org...

Open Debate Topics Project: http://www.debate.org...
bluesteel
Posts: 12,301
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1/26/2015 1:00:46 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/26/2015 12:59:32 AM, bsh1 wrote:
At 1/26/2015 12:56:07 AM, bluesteel wrote:
At 1/26/2015 12:54:36 AM, bsh1 wrote:

He really needs to be perm-banned. I mean, Texans are all crazy (unless they're attractive...).

And then they're just crazy ... hot

All except thett, ofc.

Do you ever watch HIMYM? Is there a "hot-crazy scale" for gay guys too (the hotter the guy, the crazier they tend to be)?
You can't reason someone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into - Jonathan Swift (paraphrase)
bsh1
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1/26/2015 1:02:04 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/26/2015 1:00:46 AM, bluesteel wrote:
At 1/26/2015 12:59:32 AM, bsh1 wrote:
At 1/26/2015 12:56:07 AM, bluesteel wrote:
At 1/26/2015 12:54:36 AM, bsh1 wrote:

He really needs to be perm-banned. I mean, Texans are all crazy (unless they're attractive...).

And then they're just crazy ... hot

All except thett, ofc.

Do you ever watch HIMYM?

Nope. My best friend does though...she's in love with Neil Patrick Harris.

Is there a "hot-crazy scale" for gay guys too (the hotter the guy, the crazier they tend to be)?

Lol...IDK...
Live Long and Prosper

I'm a Bish.


"Twilight isn't just about obtuse metaphors between cannibalism and premarital sex, it also teaches us the futility of hope." - Raisor

"[Bsh1] is the Guinan of DDO." - ButterCatX

Follow the DDOlympics
: http://www.debate.org...

Open Debate Topics Project: http://www.debate.org...
Smithereens
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1/26/2015 1:38:09 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/25/2015 11:44:59 PM, bsh1 wrote:
At 1/25/2015 11:43:17 PM, YYW wrote:
I completely agree. Very well said.

Gracias, mi amor :)

You two just want to flirt without the ban hammer looming over you. Admit it. ;)
Music composition contest: http://www.debate.org...
bsh1
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1/26/2015 1:43:08 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/26/2015 1:38:09 AM, Smithereens wrote:
At 1/25/2015 11:44:59 PM, bsh1 wrote:
At 1/25/2015 11:43:17 PM, YYW wrote:
I completely agree. Very well said.

Gracias, mi amor :)

You two just want to flirt without the ban hammer looming over you. Admit it. ;)

Airmax totally helped us coordinate this, so that we could make this kinky dream come true.
Live Long and Prosper

I'm a Bish.


"Twilight isn't just about obtuse metaphors between cannibalism and premarital sex, it also teaches us the futility of hope." - Raisor

"[Bsh1] is the Guinan of DDO." - ButterCatX

Follow the DDOlympics
: http://www.debate.org...

Open Debate Topics Project: http://www.debate.org...
bsh1
Posts: 27,504
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1/26/2015 2:01:25 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
Bump
Live Long and Prosper

I'm a Bish.


"Twilight isn't just about obtuse metaphors between cannibalism and premarital sex, it also teaches us the futility of hope." - Raisor

"[Bsh1] is the Guinan of DDO." - ButterCatX

Follow the DDOlympics
: http://www.debate.org...

Open Debate Topics Project: http://www.debate.org...
Bullish
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1/26/2015 4:39:28 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 1/26/2015 1:38:09 AM, Smithereens wrote:
At 1/25/2015 11:44:59 PM, bsh1 wrote:
At 1/25/2015 11:43:17 PM, YYW wrote:
I completely agree. Very well said.

Gracias, mi amor :)

You two just want to flirt without the ban hammer looming over you. Admit it. ;)

Exactly what I was thinking.
0x5f3759df