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Bloggingheads 05-23-2011 11:11 PM

Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 

brucds 05-23-2011 11:44 PM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
I treat myself to a glass of Franzia Chardonnay out of the big box in the frig every time I don't click on an Althouse dialog. Why would I want to spend money to end this incredibly effective reward system to myself?

Simon Willard 05-24-2011 12:27 AM

When to call the cops
 
Since I have been called out in public as favoring the police-state forum, let me briefly clarify my position. (This is not a change.)

I want more vigorous policing to cut down on the adolescent back-and-forth flame wars so I don’t have to wade thru uninteresting posts. Egregious baiting and name-calling that does not relate to any real issue is simply a bore. A comment that contains only insults is not worth reading. Surely it drives away the audience. To a large extent this is a question of style and language.

I have no objection, in principle, to opinions that particular religions are the work of Satan, or that particular ethnic groups are intellectually inferior, or that a particular BloggingHead is clueless and stupid. In this respect I'm probably more laissez–faire than BobWright/DonZeko. For me, it depends on how it's written.

So please, feel free to insult Florian. But do it with argument, style, grace and erudition. He deserves better.

Wonderment 05-24-2011 12:45 AM

Cosmopolitian disdain
 
I'm delighted that Bob and Aryeh lauded Florian's "cosmopolitan disdain." That provides me with an opportunity to cite a few recent très charmant examples, all directed at moi, from the Goldberg-Ziegler Hemingway diavlog:

5/19/11, 9:45 a.m [PDT]. "Shut the fuck up, until you have something to say that rises above political correctness and Oprah Winfrey wisdom."

5/19/11, 10:51 a.m. "Wonderment knows nothing about France"

5/21/11, 11:14 a.m. "...You unbearable, ridiculous prig. In particular, how do you prove in a court of law that a man put his penis in the mouth of woman without her consent?"

5/22/11, 2:24 p.m. "I have no idea what you are ranting about here. Nor do I care what you have to say on any subject."

5/22/11, 3;10 p.m. "Since you have nothing of the slightest interest or intelligence to say on this whole issue, a smile conceals an absence of thought."

graz 05-24-2011 01:02 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wonderment (Post 210244)
I'm delighted that Bob and Aryeh lauded Florian's "cosmopolitan disdain." That provides me with an opportunity to cite a few recent très charmant examples, all directed at moi, from the Goldberg-Ziegler Hemingway diavlog:

5/19/11, 9:45 a.m [PDT]. "Shut the fuck up, until you have something to say that rises above political correctness and Oprah Winfrey wisdom."

5/19/11, 10:51 a.m. "Wonderment knows nothing about France"

5/21/11, 11:14 a.m. "...You unbearable, ridiculous prig. In particular, how do you prove in a court of law that a man put his penis in the mouth of woman without her consent?"

5/22/11, 2:24 p.m. "I have no idea what you are ranting about here. Nor do I care what you have to say on any subject."

5/22/11, 3;10 p.m. "Since you have nothing of the slightest interest or intelligence to say on this whole issue, a smile conceals an absence of thought."

The edicts of commenter court are fickle. They spend a whole lot of time rationalizing and refiguring how to control discourse. Maybe they just like to hear themselves talk. At least you've provided a topic for a segment on the next episode of "blah, blah, blah".

Bob made it clear as mud: the standards are discretionary and arbitrary. In regard to your particular complaint, suck it up for America.

Don Zeko 05-24-2011 01:36 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Bob is spinning pretty hard here to keep his reinforcement positive.

Don Zeko 05-24-2011 01:50 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
I'm flattered that Bob and Aryeh found time to positively reinforce me for my criticisms of the last Commenter Court, but I would quibble a bit with how Bob characterized my complaint. I'm not in favor of banning comments that say derogatory things about a given ethnic or religious group, per se, but I think that the contrast I highlighted in my post underscores how inconsistent and arbitrary the standards are. If we're going to develop self-enforcing norms of behavior, then we need to have a clear idea of what they are, which I don't think we currently have.

Bob's distinction between speech about other commenters, speech about DV'ers, and speech about everyone else is appealing, but I don't think it really holds up. Is it really the case that nothing would happen to me if I were to write a lengthy post arguing that the LDS church is a cult with a shameful history of tolerating racism, but that if I were to call Operative a member of a cult who chooses to associate with racist organizations the banhammer would fall*? I don't claim to know whether either of those hypothetical posts should be banworthy, but the powers that be here need to spell out the answer one way or another if we're ever going to achieve what Bob says he wants.

*Just to be clear, I don't agree with those statements. Op just has the misfortune of being the first commenter of an identified religion that came to mind.

Ocean 05-24-2011 01:54 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
I wish I had some positive reinforcement for Bob, Aryeh and their attempt to social-engineer this community. Positive reinforcement is better than punishment. But either of them are detrimental if applied arbitrarily.

The rule of "every diavlog is a new day" with its comparisons to traffic violations or refereeing a game, simply doesn't reflect the way people relate to each other in a community. Is this a highway or a ball game? Are we players or drivers? Again, it may be that I see this as a community while in fact it's some other entity. If so, it should be made explicit.

Bob and Aryeh had no doubt that implying that a commenter is a skinhead is very insulting and off limits. What if a commenter was actually a skinhead? If a commenter (hypothetically) starts making statements that are clearly consistent with a certain ideology, would it be okay to identify the person by the name of that ideology? We've been witnessing Republicans calling Democrats socialists or even communists, when that clearly is not the case. What if a commenter here calls another commenter a communist? Should that person be penalized?

All the above are questions that I'm raising because while listening to this conversation, I felt that those are aspects of the topic that should be considered, or if they've been considered already, then they should be explained a little better.

One of the aspects of the discussion was helpful and illustrative: the rule of not writing something that one wouldn't tell the other person if both were face to face. Of course, different people may value polite interactions more than others. I wonder how we would translate to real interactions those comments that consist of ugly or offensive pictures.

I will insist that there's an element of organic interaction that's very valuable and I would encourage Bob to foster it rather than trying to kill it. Treat the commenters as real people that come to this forum with different backgrounds and contribute in their own ways. Weed out the worst offenders who come here only to provoke without contributing much. Appreciate those who do contribute in spite of creating some turmoil from time to time. It's sometimes part of real life and we all learn to deal with that, as long as the balance between light and heat favors the former.

Wonderment 05-24-2011 02:04 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

In regard to your particular complaint, suck it up for America.
USA! USA! USA!

Florian 05-24-2011 02:11 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wonderment (Post 210244)
I'm delighted that Bob and Aryeh lauded Florian's "cosmopolitan disdain." That provides me with an opportunity to cite a few recent très charmant examples, all directed at moi, from the Goldberg-Ziegler Hemingway diavlog:

5/19/11, 9:45 a.m [PDT]. "Shut the fuck up, until you have something to say that rises above political correctness and Oprah Winfrey wisdom."

5/19/11, 10:51 a.m. "Wonderment knows nothing about France"

5/21/11, 11:14 a.m. "...You unbearable, ridiculous prig. In particular, how do you prove in a court of law that a man put his penis in the mouth of woman without her consent?"

5/22/11, 2:24 p.m. "I have no idea what you are ranting about here. Nor do I care what you have to say on any subject."

5/22/11, 3;10 p.m. "Since you have nothing of the slightest interest or intelligence to say on this whole issue, a smile conceals an absence of thought."

I would no doubt excise "shut the fuck up" and "ridiculous prig" if I were rewriting those posts, but otherwise I stand by them. In the context, they are perfectly defensible statements because they are true.

chiwhisoxx 05-24-2011 02:19 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 210254)
I would no doubt excise "shut the fuck up" and "ridiculous prig" if I were rewriting those posts, but otherwise I stand by them. In the context, they are perfectly defensible statements because they are true.

if I called you an insufferable elitist french asshole and thought it to be true, would that be ok as well?

chiwhisoxx 05-24-2011 02:21 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by graz (Post 210245)
The edicts of commenter court are fickle. They spend a whole lot of time rationalizing and refiguring how to control discourse. Maybe they just like to hear themselves talk. At least you've provided a topic for a segment on the next episode of "blah, blah, blah".

Bob made it clear as mud: the standards are discretionary and arbitrary. In regard to your particular complaint, suck it up for America.

Agreed on the part about the rules still being pretty unclear. It was nice of Aryeh to address my concern and try to provide an example, but "things you wouldn't say to someone else in front of them" is also...pretty vague. I think I'm just going to have to be satisfied with the "limited resources, not perfect justice" explanation of commenting guidelines here.

Florian 05-24-2011 02:25 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx (Post 210256)
if I called you an insufferable elitist french asshole and thought it to be true, would that be ok as well?

Are you able to read? I said that if the insults were removed from the posts quoted by wonderment, they would still be true. How can an insult be true or false?

graz 05-24-2011 02:26 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx (Post 210257)
Agreed on the part about the rules still being pretty unclear. It was nice of Aryeh to address my concern and try to provide an example, but "things you wouldn't say to someone else in front of them" is also...pretty vague. I think I'm just going to have to be satisfied with the "limited resources, not perfect justice" explanation of commenting guidelines here.

Agreed. And they could better spend the time allocated for commenter court with friends or family.

Hume's Bastard 05-24-2011 02:45 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Yawn.

chiwhisoxx 05-24-2011 03:55 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
yes, I can in fact read, just to clear that up. maybe if you had actually excised all the insults your point would have been more clear. "you know nothing about france" is simultaneously *somewhat* insulting and bullshit conjecture (you have no idea how much Wonderment knows about France). "Nor do I care what you have to say on any subject". "you have nothing of the slightest intelligence to say"..."oprah winfrey wisdom"...etc. I'm not quite sure those rise to the level of truth, and I think a term like elitist is a lot further from insult than those are.

rfrobison 05-24-2011 04:04 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wonderment (Post 210252)

Now I have seen it all. Wonderment (via Homer) does the "U.S.A." chant. I can die happy. ;)

Florian 05-24-2011 04:25 AM

Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?
 
I suppose I should feel flattered that I have been twice in a row singled out for my "cosmopolitan" disdain of the United States, the country in which I was born and which I contemplate with no more disdain than I contemplate any other country. One might as well disdain the universe. It is true, though, that there are aspects of American culture and politics that I dislike, and BHTV always furnishes me with new reasons for thinking that my prejudices have some justification.

As for the supposed disdain of the French for the United States, that is nothing but a case of the pot calling the kettle black. I doubt if there is any country in the world whose citizens display more disdain for France than some Americans do. Indeed I doubt if there is any country in the world whose citizens are more ignorant of other nations in general. That is not to deny that France has its share of Americanophobes, but in my experience they are confined to the well-educated élite, who, unlike American francophobes, actually know something about the country they despise. There are probably just as many members of the French élite who have an uncritical admiration for everything American.

Florian 05-24-2011 04:40 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx (Post 210262)
yes, I can in fact read, just to clear that up. maybe if you had actually excised all the insults your point would have been more clear. "you know nothing about france" is simultaneously *somewhat* insulting and bullshit conjecture (you have no idea how much Wonderment knows about France). "Nor do I care what you have to say on any subject". "you have nothing of the slightest intelligence to say"..."oprah winfrey wisdom"...etc. I'm not quite sure those rise to the level of truth, and I think a term like elitist is a lot further from insult than those are.

Wonderment knows nothing about France and has proved it on several occasions. And it is true that I do not care what he thinks on any subject---anymore---although I am willing to admit that he is one of the better posters. I arrived at that view after several exchanges with him on several subjects. When I said that he had nothing of interest or intelligence to say about the DSK affair, I meant it. Is that an insult? Maybe to you, but I do not think that wonderment even bothered to read what I said in my response to basman.

ledocs 05-24-2011 06:02 AM

Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 210265)
I suppose I should feel flattered that I have been twice in a row singled out for my "cosmopolitan" disdain of the United States, the country in which I was born and which I contemplate with no more disdain than I contemplate any other country.

Pure garbage, insofar as the implication is that all countries are equally praiseworthy and blameworthy. Any reader of your posts would know that you have considerably more disdain for the USA than you have for France, that is one of the most salient threads of your bloggingheads oeuvre. But another thread is just a generalized disdain. Not only do you not read the posts of others with any care, you don't even read your own posts, or are in denial about their purport.

As far as your ignoring of my posts goes, I am ambivalent. This would be the ultimate insult, and I am not going to pretend that I enjoy being insulted or told that I am stupid or ignorant, whether in this ultimate way or in preliminary ways. It is most unfortunate that you are unable to educate without insulting the would-be student. I am happy to learn about France almost wherever and whenever I can. I certainly did not move to France in order to insult the French, or to remain as ignorant as I possibly could of their history and culture.

When you say that Tristane Binan is "an opportunist," I interpret that to mean that she is "merely an opportunist, entirely an opportunist." The implication is that whatever the precise nature of her original complaint about sexual misconduct by DSK may be, the complaint is false. It did not appear to mean only that, in placing herself in the public eye once again in regard to DSK's relations with women, there must be an opportunistic element, specifically, that she wants to sell more books. Of course, in the recent video taken in the noisy cafe and now available on the Internet,

http://www.agoravox.fr/actualites/me...agoravox-94196

she addresses and denies that charge. In any case, I provided two citations of Frenchmen who believe that there was substance in her underlying complaint of sexual misconduct by DSK directed at her. One of these citations is of an apparently reputable journalist from "Liberation" who claims expertise on the question of DSK's comportment with women. The other is from a blogger, previously unknown to me, but whose French seems quite good, hence, probably not a complete crackpot.

For anyone who has read this far and gives a shit, I have had three serious contretemps with florian in this forum over the past year, and there is a common theme. One argument had to do with the social position of lesbians and homosexuals in France, and with the French and American laws and legal regimes dealing with this. Another argument had to do with the social position of recent immigrants, primarily North African ones, to France. And now there is the present, relatively trivial argument that arose from my "absurd" contention that not every Frenchman knows that Tristane Binan is an opportunist (i.e. exclusively an opportunist, on my reading of florian). Anyone who cares can review all of these arguments using the excellent Advanced Search function in this software. So, we have arguments concerning the social position of three "minorities" in France, lesbians and homosexuals, North African immigrants, and women.

I, for one, am completely fed up with your arrogant posture as regards things French. I will stipulate that you know considerably more about France than I do, but it does not follow from this that I know nothing, or that my opinion about certain matters French might be closer to the truth than yours. In any case, nothing I have ever said, whether about these matters or anything else, should serve to justify the contumely heaped upon me, or Wonderment, or bjkeefe, or the many others who endure your insufferable, and indeed entirely ridiculous and absurd arrogance.

stephanie 05-24-2011 09:29 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Don Zeko (Post 210247)
I'm not in favor of banning comments that say derogatory things about a given ethnic or religious group, per se, but I think that the contrast I highlighted in my post underscores how inconsistent and arbitrary the standards are. If we're going to develop self-enforcing norms of behavior, then we need to have a clear idea of what they are, which I don't think we currently have.

Bob's distinction between speech about other commenters, speech about DV'ers, and speech about everyone else is appealing, but I don't think it really holds up. Is it really the case that nothing would happen to me if I were to write a lengthy post arguing that the LDS church is a cult with a shameful history of tolerating racism, but that if I were to call Operative a member of a cult who chooses to associate with racist organizations the banhammer would fall*? I don't claim to know whether either of those hypothetical posts should be banworthy, but the powers that be here need to spell out the answer one way or another if we're ever going to achieve what Bob says he wants.

*Just to be clear, I don't agree with those statements. Op just has the misfortune of being the first commenter of an identified religion that came to mind.

Yes, exactly. If you are going to try and spell out standards, you need to do it clearly, so that even if the rules are imperfect and argue-with-able (as they will always be), the application is at least understandable and fair.

In the alternative, Bob is absolutely within his rights and would get no objection from me if he just said he's deleting comments he dislikes or banning commenters who irritate him, but then he would have to give up on the claim that there's some more general and justifiable standard. [Edited to delete unnecessary bit.]

badhatharry 05-24-2011 09:48 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanie (Post 210273)
Yes, exactly. If you are going to try and spell out standards, you need to do it clearly, so that even if the rules are imperfect and argue-with-able (as they will always be), the application is at least understandable and fair.

He did mention one unequivocal standard and that is that every diavlog is a new day and there should be no references to past comments. That is very clear and also unrealistic, IMHO. But we'll see how it plays out.

Don Zeko 05-24-2011 09:54 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 210274)
He did mention one unequivocal standard and that is that every diavlog is a new day and there should be no references to past comments. That is very clear and also unrealistic, IMHO. But we'll see how it plays out.

I don't think that's what Bob was saying. As I heard it, "every DV is a new day" means that past behavior won't affect how the moderators deal with your comments. So if you have been a model commenter that stays above the fray and only writes high-minded posts and then write one sharp comment at someone that has been harassing you for months, you'll be just as likely to get sent to the dungeon or banned as someone that initiates flamewars on a daily basis. I'm not sure who Bob thinks he's kidding on this one, but that's the standard that he's set out.

stephanie 05-24-2011 10:11 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
I think the badhatharry "defense" of operative that was called out was pretty poor for a number of reasons (operative is not attacked for his religion and was not seeming to react to such in the comment in question, but to political arguments, so it was simply a false claim presumably intended to insult other posters). (As an aside, this is the second time that a CC has noted a badhatharry insult of other posters -- the first being the completely offensive and unjustifiable slam of Ocean for being sexist. I wish Bob and Aryeh would do a little research before repeating completely baseless slams and seeming to endorse them. I don't believe it was their intent, now or before, to endorse, but I suspect that even the appearance thereof encourages bad behavior, namely the making of baseless and insulting slams on other posters.)

In addition, as Bob and Aryeh did point out, it's absolutely true that it's no excuse for bad behavior that someone else was mean to you in the past. How old are we? That is an argument you'd reject from a 6 year old. Yet we see it here often in the never-ending "poor Whatfur" posts that seem to blame others for Whatfur's homophobic slurs and the like.

All that aside, though, there is a more significant concern about the arbitrary focus on individual interactions without considering rants. I get the speeding analogy, but one of the elementary understandings about rules is that they have to be clear and consistently enforced and, thus, if operative is permitted to call people fascists endlessly, it is surprising if, say, skinhead (or blessed underwear guy) is singled out as offensive and worth comment.

[The remainder of this post was on a different-enough topic that I put it in a separate post. No other edits were made at this time.]

badhatharry 05-24-2011 10:18 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx (Post 210262)
yes, I can in fact read, just to clear that up. maybe if you had actually excised all the insults your point would have been more clear. "you know nothing about france" is simultaneously *somewhat* insulting and bullshit conjecture (you have no idea how much Wonderment knows about France). "Nor do I care what you have to say on any subject". "you have nothing of the slightest intelligence to say"..."oprah winfrey wisdom"...etc. I'm not quite sure those rise to the level of truth, and I think a term like elitist is a lot further from insult than those are.

What I have learned from reading Florian/Franco American's comments is that he is intransigent. He is absolutely confident that the ideas he has are the best possible ideas which could issue forth from a human being. His insults at first are shocking but as time goes on one sees that they actually just a part of his personality and one wonders if he gets away with this in his real life or if this forum is his one opportunity to show his disdain for the humans he shares the planet with. He is a type and that is that. There are other types on this forum and it is really fascinating after a while to notice this. I don't think I ever had this window into human nature before I started posting here.

Given Bob's background and interest in human psychology, I think he views this forum as a type of experiment in human communication. He wants to set up some loose standards and also wants to encourage a more elevated dialogue that he can be proud having his name attached to. That an anonymous and disparate group of people return day after day to discuss issues of relative importance with passion is remarkable, if frustrating.

badhatharry 05-24-2011 10:23 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Don Zeko (Post 210275)
I don't think that's what Bob was saying. As I heard it, "every DV is a new day" means that past behavior won't affect how the moderators deal with your comments. So if you have been a model commenter that stays above the fray and only writes high-minded posts and then write one sharp comment at someone that has been harassing you for months, you'll be just as likely to get sent to the dungeon or banned as someone that initiates flamewars on a daily basis. I'm not sure who Bob thinks he's kidding on this one, but that's the standard that he's set out.

aha! that puts more meat on the bones. So you think it's about the moderators. I suppose that's a standard that could be upheld. I think the one I mentioned would be impossible.

Florian 05-24-2011 10:26 AM

Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ledocs (Post 210270)
Pure garbage....


Your first words sum up my thoughts about your thoughts about your past thoughts on the subjects you address below.

Don Zeko 05-24-2011 10:28 AM

Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 210279)
Your first words sum up my thoughts about your thoughts about your past thoughts on the subjects you address below.

Good to see you're fulfilling your role in our conversational ecosystem with particular fervor today.

miceelf 05-24-2011 10:28 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 210277)
What I have learned from reading Florian/Franco American's comments is that he is intransigent. He is absolutely confident that the ideas he has are the best possible ideas which could issue forth from a human being. His insults at first are shocking but as time goes on one sees that they actually just a part of his personality and one wonders if he gets away with this in his real life or if this forum is his one opportunity to show his disdain for the humans he shares the planet with. He is a type and that is that. There are other types on this forum and it is really fascinating after a while to notice this. I don't think I ever had this window into human nature before I started posting here.

Interesting observations.

Florian 05-24-2011 10:29 AM

Re: Cosmopolitian disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 210277)
What I have learned from reading Florian/Franco American's comments is that he is intransigent. He is absolutely confident that the ideas he has are the best possible ideas which could issue forth from a human being. His insults at first are shocking but as time goes on one sees that they actually just a part of his personality and one wonders if he gets away with this in his real life or if this forum is his one opportunity to show his disdain for the humans he shares the planet with. He is a type and that is that. There are other types on this forum and it is really fascinating after a while to notice this. I don't think I ever had this window into human nature before I started posting here.

Given Bob's background and interest in human psychology, I think he views this forum as a type of experiment in human communication. He wants to set up some loose standards and also wants to encourage a more elevated dialogue that he can be proud having his name attached to. That an anonymous and disparate group of people return day after day to discuss issues of relative importance with passion is remarkable, if frustrating.

If all this is true, I have shown remarkable restraint with regard to you. I have no disdain for you. Just a certain pity.

badhatharry 05-24-2011 10:39 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanie (Post 210276)
I think the badhatharry "defense" of operative that was called out was pretty poor for a number of reasons (operative is not attacked for his religion and was not seeming to react to such in the comment in question, but to political arguments, so it was simply a false claim presumably intended to insult other posters). (As an aside, this is the second time that a CC has noted a badhatharry insult of other posters -- the first being the completely offensive and unjustifiable slam of Ocean for being sexist.

I never said Ocean was sexist. I don't call people sexist and racist and a lot of the other silly psychobabble names that get thrown around as though they have any meaning. What occured is that Aryeh said he had noticed that some of the posters are sexist and then launched into the incident where I noticed that Ocean had a particular intolerance for women who are conservatives. So the connection made was his, not mine.

Operative has been attacked and insulted for his religion many, many times and his responses are generally pretty mild considering the venom which is aimed at him. That he came out punching is regrettable and he has admitted that. One thing that is very clear to me is that people ignore the bad behavior of people who are in their camp, so I wouldn't expect you to have noticed the attacks on him which are often hidden in the politcal discourse.

PS You might want to consider laying off the parentheses. They aren't necessary and make your writing confusing.

Florian 05-24-2011 10:42 AM

Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Don Zeko (Post 210280)
Good to see you're fulfilling your role in our conversational ecosystem with particular fervor today.

I am not fulfilling any role. C'est la vie. If you want to check up on the exchanges I had with him you are welcome, although I wouldn't recommend it.

Ledocs has great difficulty understanding how anyone could disagree with him on the above-mentioned subjects because he lacks common sense. He is also ridiculously self-important. Just look at the lengths to which he goes to justify his eccentric understanding of the Tristane Binane business. Nothing but word-chopping chafe, a distraction. He excels at this kind of thing.

badhatharry 05-24-2011 10:46 AM

Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 210284)
He is also ridiculously self-important.

priceless

laura 05-24-2011 10:48 AM

Re: Cosmopolitan disdain
 
Brilliant! We are lab rats and Bob is collecting the data. Your observation must mark the end of the experiment because now the rats know they're in a lab.

Florian 05-24-2011 10:50 AM

Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by badhatharry (Post 210285)
priceless

One of your favorite retorts, badhat. Try a little variation.

badhatharry 05-24-2011 11:04 AM

Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Florian (Post 210287)
One of your favorite retorts, badhat. Try a little variation.

I'll just let it stand.

badhatharry 05-24-2011 11:10 AM

Re: Cosmopolitan disdain
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by laura (Post 210286)
Brilliant! We are lab rats and Bob is collecting the data. Your observation must mark the end of the experiment because now the rats know they're in a lab.

That's interesting. But maybe subjects forget that they are being observed after a while. I would imagine that Bob has considered writing about this blog, however. Since it is unique it would make an interesting subject...lots of aspects, from the people who appear and why they appear to the drama that goes on in the forum.

stephanie 05-24-2011 11:33 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
I added to my post after writing it, and think it would make more sense broken up or at least be shorter. I haven't changed anything in doing so. The "edit" references are from the earlier edits.

One of the problems with unclear and irregularly enforced rules legally, of course, is that it permits enforcement in a biased way or the suspicion thereof, which you see here. (I think this results in affirmative action for RWers, perhaps because Bob is worried about seeming to impose his own views too much.)

This gets to my issue with the DenvilleSteve post, where none of his comments were ever called out -- I guess because saying women don't think or liberals are evil is okay, but directly telling a poster that she is silly or evil is bad. I think at a certain point, however, that becomes a distinction without a difference. I actually find comments focused on arguments made (i.e., if DS were to say that some argument I made was dumb or sounded socialistic) far less offensive than for him to say that women or liberals can't be trusted or are trying to ruin America and the life of real Americans, even if that's not specifically directed at me. Yet he does the latter and never gets called out by the CCs.

Edited to add: I also admit that I think DS is a troll and generally disruptive on purpose, which is why I defended handle, even though I don't actually approve of the tone of the comment. I do think the point I made, which is that if we are going to tolerate the presence of commenters who make extremely offensive comments about others based on things such as religion and nationality and sex -- not directed at individuals, though! -- then you should give a little leeway in how others respond or else you will create an impression that the site as a whole approves. My preferred response is to try and ignore the offensive posters, but I appreciate that others do more -- this was important as a response to the anti semitic comments from jeffmaylortx before the site banned him, and I think is important to at least some of DS's comments, which was the point I tried to make. Given that my response was discussed sort of, I wish this aspect -- which troubles me -- had been at least acknowledged.

There's also the point, which Ocean made above, that "skinhead" is bad when directed to a RW poster, apparently, but the RW posters [edit: not fair, many of them do not, only a few do, so if you don't I don't mean you] have consistently been calling liberal ones socialists and Marxists and fascists and that seems to be okay. Again, I'm not saying that one is okay because of bad behavior by the others, but that this clearly raises a question about whether enforcement is being done fairly. I don't see an obvious distinction between how offensive it is to say "Steve, really, you sound like a skinhead" vs. "bj keefe is a fascist" (operative's current favorite insult). Indeed, I think context is essential here, and that DS had had a series of posts that were in essence "yuck, dirty foreigners," that context makes the former not really offensive (and putting it in the dungeon unfair) whereas the latter is.

(For the record, if I were in charge, which I know I'm not, I probably wouldn't consider either comment necessary to put in the dungeon, but I wouldn't treat them differently and I'd have clearer standards. Why most reasonable people wouldn't call Brendan a fascist -- or even Steve a skinhead -- is that they aren't effective responses. I do agree with the idea that what's important, also, is internalized rules of politeness, but the best way to encourage that is not through rules that can be gamed but by encouraging a community and posters who seem to have an investment in the community and relationships with others. And that's why I also think it's wrong to completely ignore past interactions and the intent with which posters seem to approach the site and others.)

badhatharry 05-24-2011 11:57 AM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanie (Post 210293)
(I think this results in affirmative action for RWers, perhaps because Bob is worried about seeming to impose his own views too much.)

For a person who formerly eschewed labels, you certainly have changed your tune. There is a BHTV meme that says that people on the right get preferential treatment. Then we get the psychoanalysis regarding Bob, that he's doing this out of some strange sense of guilt/fairness. I would like Bob to address this directly and he should do it sooner rather than later.

We on the right are constantly being accused of being crybabies, but your accusation, which is being made ceaslessly and with no proof, is illustrative that it is you who own the biggest crying towel.

graz 05-24-2011 12:05 PM

Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by stephanie (Post 210276)
(As an aside, this is the second time that a CC has noted a badhatharry insult of other posters -- the first being the completely offensive and unjustifiable slam of Ocean for being sexist. I wish Bob and Aryeh would do a little research before repeating completely baseless slams and seeming to endorse them. I don't believe it was their intent, now or before, to endorse, but I suspect that even the appearance thereof encourages bad behavior, namely the making of baseless and insulting slams on other posters.)

This is clearly a glaring oversight on their part. They are treating the chosen examples the same as a dingalink. Which is to say out of context and supportive of their (Bob and Aryeh) agenda. That nearly every commenter highlighted felt the need to clarify their intention makes the case succinctly. This is counterproductive to the stated goals of the gabfests. Why would people buy-in? We know that profit sharing (: is unlikely. So what's the reward again? Oh yeah, allowing two distant subjective scolds to lord it over the rabble. I know that isn't the intention. But it is the effect.


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