Where did it go?

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Where did it go?

Postby tentative » Thu Sep 06, 2018 2:23 am

In a recent thread in the religion forum there were complaints that the forum dis-invited religious members being forced out by all the non-believers. Wasn't there a sub-forum established several years ago to deal with this very problem? My vague memories suggest that this sub-forum was to be only for those who wished to discuss religion and the non-theists and naysayers were not invited to the party.

Where did it go?
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby Carleas » Fri Sep 07, 2018 3:10 pm

There was a forum called "Theological Discussions", which existed from Summer '09 to Spring '12. I don't remember much about it, but from what I can gather, the gist of the forum was that it would allow people to have discussion within a certain set of assumptions, thus allowing discussions within a particular religious framework and prohibiting general anti-religious objections to every religious thread. It was underused and difficult to moderate, and ended up being merged back into the Religion forum as part of a general consolidation/pruning of forums.
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby tentative » Fri Sep 07, 2018 11:12 pm

Thanks for the historical confirmation. Like every other attempt to satisfy the complainers - and there were several special sub-forums over the years - the results were the same. Underused and difficult to moderate. It seems like what the complainers really want is just to complain.
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Sorry, arguing with the ignorant is like trying to wrestle with a jellyfish. No matter how many tentacles you cut off there are always more, and there isn't even a brain to stun. - Maia

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Re: Where did it go?

Postby phyllo » Fri Sep 07, 2018 11:33 pm

Ierrellus has taken quite a beating from the atheists over a long period of time.

But whatever.

Fucking complainers. Fuck 'em. Right?
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby tentative » Sat Sep 08, 2018 12:58 am

Because all of are anonymous in this website, people are allowed to say(write) things they would never say in person. They can whine, become attack dogs, and all in the safety of internet obscurity. The complainers are literally a mob of one. There doesn't have to be any good intent or any agenda beyond taking a dump on whatever or whoever. The trolls are everywhere! Why? Because there is little or no consequence for their behavior. Is there a fix? Nope. It's that freedom of speech thing which is both blessing and curse.
IGAYRCCFYVM
Sorry, arguing with the ignorant is like trying to wrestle with a jellyfish. No matter how many tentacles you cut off there are always more, and there isn't even a brain to stun. - Maia

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Re: Where did it go?

Postby phyllo » Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:33 am

Oh, come on.

After Jason left, the atheists got free rein in the religion forum.

Posters claiming "god experiences" were ridiculed. The "serious" arguments became routinely ad hom.

Is there a fix? Sure there is.
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby phyllo » Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:41 am

I always get a chuckle out of this text :
For intuitive and critical discussions, from spirituality to theological doctrines. Fair warning: because the subject matter is personal, moderation is strict.
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby tentative » Sat Sep 08, 2018 3:40 am

phyllo wrote:Oh, come on.

After Jason left, the atheists got free rein in the religion forum.

Posters claiming "god experiences" were ridiculed. The "serious" arguments became routinely ad hom.

Is there a fix? Sure there is.


But the atheists were simply the antithesis of the deists. Both proclaiming is-isn't without knowing shit one way or the other. And so the merry-go-round. The difference between dialog and diatribe isn't given any thought and the perpetual machine of alternate realities grinds on.

If there is a fix, what might that be?
IGAYRCCFYVM
Sorry, arguing with the ignorant is like trying to wrestle with a jellyfish. No matter how many tentacles you cut off there are always more, and there isn't even a brain to stun. - Maia

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Re: Where did it go?

Postby phyllo » Sat Sep 08, 2018 4:00 am

Moderating the forum so that a discussion can actually take place.
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby tentative » Sat Sep 08, 2018 4:41 am

phyllo wrote:Moderating the forum so that a discussion can actually take place.

OK, but that forum was once here for any and everybody and it failed. "Under-used and difficult to moderate" I'm all for polite discussion, but how does one moderate when the participants have their own personal view of reality that may be in direct conflict with the reality of others? What are the boundaries and borders you think would be conducive to discussion?
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Sorry, arguing with the ignorant is like trying to wrestle with a jellyfish. No matter how many tentacles you cut off there are always more, and there isn't even a brain to stun. - Maia

I don't take know for an answer.
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby phyllo » Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:52 pm

"Under-used and difficult to moderate" doesn't explain anything. It's like saying that a restaurant closed because it didn't have enough customers. LOL. Sure, but why didn't it have enough customers?
I'm all for polite discussion, but how does one moderate when the participants have their own personal view of reality that may be in direct conflict with the reality of others? What are the boundaries and borders you think would be conducive to discussion?
There has to be some respect shown for the other posters and arguments have to stay within certain bounds.

As soon as the discussion drifts towards ad hom and bogus claims, the moderator has to nudge back on course.

For example, just because people disagree with you does not mean that they are delusional or mentally ill. Or people disagree with your take on morality and they are immediately labelled "evil". That's not reasoning or making an argument for your point of view. But often it's all the discussion centers on. It seems that someone has to be around to say "that's not how you talk to people".
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby iambiguous » Sat Sep 08, 2018 8:51 pm

phyllo wrote:Moderating the forum so that a discussion can actually take place.


If someone comes into a religion forum as a believer, there will be other believers. There will be atheists. And, sure, there will be trolls bent only on huffing and puffing, on personal attacks, on disrupting the thread.

But what does that really have to do with any intelligent and respectful exchanges that one can have with those who share their own religious beliefs? Or have a different belief but are willing to engage in a civil and challenging exchange of views.

Only if the other participants are able to hack into the exchanges that you value and disrupt them would your experience be trampled.

Yes, it might be nice to have a sub-forum in which only believers exchange posts. But if finding others here at ILP who do have faith in one or another God or spiritual bent is your aim, there will either be folks like that you can exchange posts with or there won't be. If there are then focus in on those exchanges and simply ignore the posts and the posters that piss you off.

Or am I missing something here?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby phyllo » Sat Sep 08, 2018 10:07 pm

Only if the other participants are able to hack into the exchanges that you value and disrupt them would your experience be trampled.
Sure. If you have a thick skin and a lot of self-discipline, then you can ignore the disruptions. You can ignore the loud people horsing around in a movie theater. But are you going to keep going there if you know the jackasses will be there again?
If there are then focus in on those exchanges and simply ignore the posts and the posters that piss you off.
Sure. Put them on "ignore" is the usual solution proposed.

Has it worked?

I don't think so.
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby iambiguous » Sat Sep 08, 2018 10:32 pm

phyllo wrote:
Only if the other participants are able to hack into the exchanges that you value and disrupt them would your experience be trampled.
Sure. If you have a thick skin and a lot of self-discipline, then you can ignore the disruptions. You can ignore the loud people horsing around in a movie theater. But are you going to keep going there if you know the jackasses will be there again?


In a movie theatre those horsing around directly interfere with you being able to watch the film in peace and quiet. But here at ILP, how hard is it really to note those you either do not respect the intelligence of or deem to be assholes? I just simply scroll down to those I know are willing to engage in the sort of exchanges that appeal to me. As long as the idiots and the assholes can't actually interject themselves into the exchanges that I do value, let them do their thing.

Instead, my concern here at ILP is the extent to which the idiots and the assholes come to prevail on all the forums. The Kids as I call them. And thus drive away those folks whose opinions [and intelligence] I do value. Like yours.

If there are then focus in on those exchanges and simply ignore the posts and the posters that piss you off.


phyllo wrote:Sure. Put them on "ignore" is the usual solution proposed.

Has it worked?

I don't think so.


I have only ever put one person on ignore in all the years I've been here. And that was for about 15 minutes.

Sure, maybe my frame of mind reflects only my own experiences. But it just does not take me a whole lot of time or effort to separate the wheat from the chaff here. As long as "the idiots and the assholes" can't disrupt the exchanges that I value, I do simply ignore them.

As no doubt those folks who think of me here as an idiot or an asshole will figure out a way to ignore me.
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby phyllo » Sat Sep 08, 2018 11:42 pm

Instead, my concern here at ILP is the extent to which the idiots and the assholes come to prevail on all the forums. The Kids as I call them. And thus drive away those folks whose opinions [and intelligence] I do value.
"The Kids" have prevailed.

The discussions are below a high school level.
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby tentative » Sun Sep 09, 2018 12:28 am

I just googled the number of religion forums on the internet: "About 210.400.000 in .52 seconds" Those with belief systems aren't being deprived access to metaphysical discussion because they happen to wander into ILP. ILP is open to ALL (most) comers and if all a believer wants is to deal with those who will confirm his beliefs, then he(she) will probably not be here very long.

Idiots and assholes... Well, maybe some of them. But some are just seekers who ACT LIKE idiots and assholes. Trolls excepted. It might be good to remember that almost all ILP members are personally evolving their ideas, their agendas, their language, etc. And so we have members who have barely started along the path and those who have almost completed their journey. A few, like me, are fossilized in amber. ILP, like it or not, is a reflection of our own evolution. Who we were and who we are might not be the same.

Look at your history here. Are there any posts you'd like to take back? Were you ever an idiot or an asshole? Hell, I'd have to take back 90% of all my drivel on this website. So maybe we should tolerate the seekers who don't quite match up with our expectations.
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Sorry, arguing with the ignorant is like trying to wrestle with a jellyfish. No matter how many tentacles you cut off there are always more, and there isn't even a brain to stun. - Maia

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Re: Where did it go?

Postby phyllo » Sun Sep 09, 2018 12:36 am

I just googled the number of religion forums on the internet: "About 210.400.000 in .52 seconds" Those with belief systems aren't being deprived access to metaphysical discussion because they happen to wander into ILP. ILP is open to ALL (most) comers and if all a believer wants is to deal with those who will confirm his beliefs, then he(she) will probably not be here very long.
Right. You can go somewhere else. Complainers can fuck off.

But I still feel sympathy for some complainers.
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby Carleas » Sun Sep 09, 2018 4:03 am

The tone and balance of religious discussion has changed across the internet, not just at ILP. The tone of all discussion has changed. The internet has changed society significantly, the set of alternatives to ILP has changed significantly, and the set of people who seek out sites like ILP has changed significantly.

I don't mean to suggest that everything is done perfectly here or that we couldn't do some things better. But it's hasty to attribute issues with behavior on the forums to a failure of moderation.

phyllo wrote:Sure. Put them on "ignore" is the usual solution proposed.

Has it worked?

I don't think so.

What do you mean by "worked"?
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby barbarianhorde » Sun Sep 09, 2018 12:07 pm

I don't think there is enough respect for other religions than Christianity on the religion forum.
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby phyllo » Sun Sep 09, 2018 1:29 pm

What do you mean by "worked"?
It doesn't stop or discourage the negative behavior. It lets the bozos roam around freely while putting a burden on others.

(But if that's the environment that you want to create, then it has "worked".)
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby Carleas » Mon Sep 10, 2018 3:28 am

phyllo wrote:[I]f that's the environment that you want to create, then it has "worked".

Again, I think you overestimate the amount of control that moderation has on the environment. Point to a web community that doesn't have some of its users calling others of its users, "bozos".

Muting people has the benefit of filtering the environment to your preferences, without imposing those preferences on others. It is of course my intent to impose some of your preferences, since fostering depth and rigor of discussion is a goal we share, but ignoring the bozos works even where our preferences do not align.

People shouldn't be insulting each other or harassing each other. I admit that I don't spend much time in the Religion forum, and Dan is often on walkabout. I'll start spending a little more time there to see what I can do.
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby tentative » Mon Sep 10, 2018 5:24 am

Carleas wrote:
phyllo wrote:[I]f that's the environment that you want to create, then it has "worked".

Again, I think you overestimate the amount of control that moderation has on the environment. Point to a web community that doesn't have some of its users calling others of its users, "bozos".

Muting people has the benefit of filtering the environment to your preferences, without imposing those preferences on others. It is of course my intent to impose some of your preferences, since fostering depth and rigor of discussion is a goal we share, but ignoring the bozos works even where our preferences do not align.

People shouldn't be insulting each other or harassing each other. I admit that I don't spend much time in the Religion forum, and Dan is often on walkabout. I'll start spending a little more time there to see what I can do.


The religion forum has two characteristics that will always generate heat. First, every believer has their own very personal beliefs. Anyone or any idea contrary to those personal beliefs is seen as a personal "attack"to be defended - vigorously. Secondly, no matter the personal beliefs, they are all anectdotal and not provable by any other method of inquiry man has ever invented. This just adds fuel to the emotional fire The best solution has already been offered: don't get into the ad hom game. Disagree with anything counter to your personal beliefs, but just disagree and let it go. Play nice.
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby phyllo » Mon Sep 10, 2018 2:04 pm

Anyone or any idea contrary to those personal beliefs is seen as a personal "attack"to be defended - vigorously.
Some people don't know how to discuss and argue in a forum setting. They need to be shown and taught how. That's where a moderator comes in.
If nobody stops it then they will keep on doing it.
Secondly, no matter the personal beliefs, they are all anectdotal and not provable by any other method of inquiry man has ever invented.
That's just completely false. Philosophers have been making reasoned arguments and counterarguments for hundreds of years. Simply glance at the history of philosophy and theology.
This wiki page links to 31 pages of arguments:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category: ... nce_of_God

And it's not just 'ancient' history :
Such trends have ironically been taking place even as, I would argue, the probability for the existence of a supernatural god have been rising. In my 2015 book, “God? Very Probably: Five Rational Ways to Think about the Question of a God,” I look at physics, the philosophy of human consciousness, evolutionary biology, mathematics, the history of religion and theology to explore whether such a god exists. I should say that I am trained originally as an economist, but have been working at the intersection of economics, environmentalism and theology since the 1990s.

ttps://theconversation.com/arguments-wh ... ists-75451

If you are focused on the idea of "proof" or "provable" arguments then read this :
Before attempting to explain and assess moral arguments for the existence of God, it would be helpful to have some perspective on the goals of arguments for God’s existence. (I shall generically term arguments for God’s existence “theistic arguments.”) Of course views about this are diverse, but most contemporary proponents of such arguments do not see theistic arguments as attempted “proofs,” in the sense that they are supposed to provide valid arguments with premises that no reasonable person could deny. Such a standard of achievement would clearly be setting the bar for success very high, and proponents of theistic arguments rightly note that philosophical arguments for interesting conclusions in any field outside of formal logic hardly ever reach such a standard. More reasonable questions to ask about theistic arguments would seem to be the following: Are there valid arguments for the conclusion that God exists that have premises that are known or reasonably believed by some people? Are the premises of such arguments more reasonable than their denials, at least for some reasonable people? Arguments that met these standards could have value in making belief in God reasonable for some people, or even giving some people knowledge of God’s existence, even if it turns out that some of the premises of the arguments can be reasonably denied by other people, and thus that the arguments fail as proofs.

It is of course possible that an argument for God’s existence could provide some evidence for God’s existence, in the sense that the argument increases the probability or plausibility of the claim that God exists, even if the argument does not provide enough support by itself for full-fledged belief that God exists. A proponent of the moral argument who viewed the argument in this way might in that case regard the argument as part of a cumulative case for theism, and hold that the moral argument must be supplemented by other possible arguments, such as the “fine-tuning” argument from the physical constants of the universe, or an argument from religious experience. A non-believer might even concede some version of a theistic argument has some evidential force, but claim that the overall balance of evidence does not support belief.

https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/mora ... #GoaTheArg
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Re: Where did it go?

Postby tentative » Mon Sep 10, 2018 3:01 pm

Phyllo,

People don't know argumentation/discussion? True. Perhaps a questionaire or test for all members to show their proficiency level before they're allowed to post? Would you like to write a short primer of the do's and don'ts? I'm sure the moderators would love anything that would make their job easier.

I'll stand by my "lack of proof" statements. The balance of your post only suggests the possibility of a god. I'll agree that SOME people will accept that possibility as proof of a god. But for many of us showing possible isn't proof of anything. We live in a world of infinite possibles, don't we? As a skeptic, I need a little more than just possible. Without that little bit more, I'll wait for that something that is more convincing than possible.
IGAYRCCFYVM
Sorry, arguing with the ignorant is like trying to wrestle with a jellyfish. No matter how many tentacles you cut off there are always more, and there isn't even a brain to stun. - Maia

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Re: Where did it go?

Postby phyllo » Mon Sep 10, 2018 4:12 pm

Perhaps a questionaire or test for all members to show their proficiency level before they're allowed to post?
I suggest that the proficiency ought to be raised rather than excluding people who are not proficient at the beginning.
Would you like to write a short primer of the do's and don'ts? I'm sure the moderators would love anything that would make their job easier.
I don't really want to be involved any more. I don't think that there is anything interesting or productive going on.

I was around because there are a couple of open threads where I had posted and I didn't want to leave without some closure.

I only responded to this thread because "the complainers" have some valid points and I thought they didn't deserve another kick in the head.
I'll stand by my "lack of proof" statements. The balance of your post only suggests the possibility of a god. I'll agree that SOME people will accept that possibility as proof of a god. But for many of us showing possible isn't proof of anything.
Most things can't be "proven". Even science is based on showing that theories don't work rather than proving that theories are correct.

People demand proofs from others but are their own thoughts based on proofs?
We live in a world of infinite possibles, don't we?
Depends on what you mean by infinite possibilities. There is a structure in place which limits the possibilities.
As a skeptic, I need a little more than just possible. Without that little bit more, I'll wait for that something that is more convincing than possible.
While you are waiting, people are making reasonable arguments that can be discussed. It's not all anecdotal. It's not all woo woo magical thinking.
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