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  #1  
Old 05-23-2011, 11:11 PM
Bloggingheads Bloggingheads is offline
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Default Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)

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  #2  
Old 05-23-2011, 11:44 PM
brucds brucds is offline
 
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Default 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?
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  #3  
Old 05-24-2011, 12:27 AM
Simon Willard Simon Willard is offline
 
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Default 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.

Last edited by Simon Willard; 05-24-2011 at 12:43 AM..
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  #4  
Old 05-24-2011, 12:45 AM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Default 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."
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  #5  
Old 05-24-2011, 01:02 AM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonderment View Post
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.
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  #6  
Old 05-24-2011, 02:04 AM
Wonderment Wonderment is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
In regard to your particular complaint, suck it up for America.
USA! USA! USA!
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  #7  
Old 05-24-2011, 04:04 AM
rfrobison rfrobison is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonderment View Post
Now I have seen it all. Wonderment (via Homer) does the "U.S.A." chant. I can die happy.
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  #8  
Old 05-24-2011, 02:21 AM
chiwhisoxx chiwhisoxx is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by graz View Post
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.
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  #9  
Old 05-24-2011, 02:26 AM
graz graz is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx View Post
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.
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  #10  
Old 05-24-2011, 02:11 AM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonderment View Post
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.
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  #11  
Old 05-24-2011, 02:19 AM
chiwhisoxx chiwhisoxx is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Florian View Post
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?
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  #12  
Old 05-24-2011, 02:25 AM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx View Post
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?
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  #13  
Old 05-24-2011, 03:55 AM
chiwhisoxx chiwhisoxx is offline
 
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Default 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.
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  #14  
Old 05-24-2011, 04:40 AM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx View Post
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.

Last edited by Florian; 05-24-2011 at 04:44 AM..
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  #15  
Old 05-24-2011, 10:18 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by chiwhisoxx View Post
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.
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  #16  
Old 05-24-2011, 10:28 AM
miceelf miceelf is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by badhatharry View Post
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.
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  #17  
Old 05-24-2011, 10:29 AM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by badhatharry View Post
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.
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  #18  
Old 05-25-2011, 10:31 PM
grits-n-gravy grits-n-gravy is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Ouch!
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  #19  
Old 05-24-2011, 10:48 AM
laura laura is offline
 
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Default 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.
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  #20  
Old 05-24-2011, 11:10 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitan disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by laura View Post
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.
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  #21  
Old 05-24-2011, 01:13 PM
Simon Willard Simon Willard is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitian disdain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonderment View Post
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...
It is weird how some Americans conflate the ability to quote nuggets from the study of philosophy with the adjective "cosmopolitan". I don't follow that connection any better than you. However, I do like it when Florian writes well. Let's examine the examples you offered:


Quote:
"shut the fuck up"
This serves absolutely no purpose. Comments like this should go straight to the dungeon.

Quote:
"Oprah Winfrey wisdom"
I like this. It's a great phrase, and expresses a legitimate opinion. It's more than saying "you're wrong", it's saying that you're wrong because your thinking is shallow.

Quote:
"Wonderment knows nothing about France"
Not great writing, but a legitimate expression of Florian's opinion, and in-bounds because it reflects back to issues under discussion.

Quote:
"you unbearable, ridiculous prig"
I love this description of you, Wonderment!

Well, OK, it's a bit over the top, but the adjective "prig" is a great word, not an obscenity, and it makes a claim about the character of your body of work here. I could even defend that characterization. Had Florian said simply "you are unbearable and ridiculous", I would have tossed it into the dungeon.

Quote:
"I have no idea what you are ranting about here"
This is completely fair.

Quote:
"nor do I care what you have to say on any subject"
This is completely out-of-bounds because it is so irrelevant. To the dungeon.

Quote:
"you have nothing of the slightest interest or intelligence to say on this whole issue"
This is a close call. This is Florian at his surly worst, but expressing an opinion that is legitimate because it's tied to the issue under discussion. I guess I'd give it a pass.

Quote:
"a smile conceals an absence of thought"
Great riposte; inoffensive.

Anyway, Wonderment, you are one of the best at staying cool under fire, and I hope you continue to do so.

Last edited by Simon Willard; 05-24-2011 at 01:15 PM..
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  #22  
Old 05-24-2011, 01:36 AM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)

Bob is spinning pretty hard here to keep his reinforcement positive.
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  #23  
Old 05-24-2011, 01:50 AM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default 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.
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  #24  
Old 05-24-2011, 09:29 AM
stephanie stephanie is offline
 
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Default Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
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.]

Last edited by stephanie; 05-24-2011 at 09:33 AM..
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  #25  
Old 05-24-2011, 09:48 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)

Quote:
Originally Posted by stephanie View Post
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.
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  #26  
Old 05-24-2011, 09:54 AM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)

Quote:
Originally Posted by badhatharry View Post
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.
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  #27  
Old 05-24-2011, 10:23 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
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.
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  #28  
Old 05-24-2011, 01:54 AM
Ocean Ocean is offline
 
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Default 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.
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  #29  
Old 05-24-2011, 02:45 AM
Hume's Bastard Hume's Bastard is offline
 
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Default Re: Commenter Court: Positive Reinforcement (Robert Wright & Aryeh Cohen-Wade)

Yawn.
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  #30  
Old 05-24-2011, 04:25 AM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Default 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.
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  #31  
Old 05-24-2011, 06:02 AM
ledocs ledocs is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?

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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.
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  #32  
Old 05-24-2011, 10:26 AM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?

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Originally Posted by ledocs View Post
Pure garbage....

Your first words sum up my thoughts about your thoughts about your past thoughts on the subjects you address below.
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  #33  
Old 05-24-2011, 10:28 AM
Don Zeko Don Zeko is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?

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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.
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  #34  
Old 05-24-2011, 10:42 AM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?

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Originally Posted by Don Zeko View Post
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.

Last edited by Florian; 05-24-2011 at 11:01 AM..
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  #35  
Old 05-24-2011, 10:46 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?

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He is also ridiculously self-important.
priceless
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  #36  
Old 05-24-2011, 10:50 AM
Florian Florian is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?

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priceless
One of your favorite retorts, badhat. Try a little variation.
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  #37  
Old 05-24-2011, 11:04 AM
badhatharry badhatharry is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?

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Originally Posted by Florian View Post
One of your favorite retorts, badhat. Try a little variation.
I'll just let it stand.
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  #38  
Old 05-31-2011, 07:36 AM
ledocs ledocs is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?

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Ledocs has great difficulty understanding how anyone could disagree with him on the above-mentioned subjects [sc. the position of lesbians/homosexuals, North African immigrants, and women in France] because he lacks common sense....
In the first place, I have no difficulty whatever in understanding that people generally, and especially florian, might disagree with me about nearly anything, and certainly not about the particular subjects in dispute. My difficulty is in understanding why my opinions about these particular matters French, or the opinions of some others about some other matters, should be subject to repeated contumely at the hands of Florian, and that is all. In the prior argument I had with florian about lesbians and homosexuals in France, I concluded by urging him to tone down his rhetoric here, and he said that he would try to do so, while reserving to himself the "right" to insult fools. Just over a week ago, he was bidding a final adieu to the many "imbeciles" on the site and to the site "tout court."

In the second place, I find the accusation that I lack common sense unfounded and entirely ridiculous in general, but particularly when the source of the accusation is florian. I have no idea what he is talking about or what evidence he has for this assertion. In the manner of florian, I am inclined to say that this is a subject about which he knows absolutely nothing.

Florian has generally been very unpleasant with me only when the discussion turns to things French. On many matters that I regard as more important, let us say on more theoretical questions, he and I tend to agree, or to disagree respectfully, and there has generally been no tendency on his part to become abusive.

In conclusion, I would merely ask that florian try harder to stick to substantive argument and to repress his desire to be a consummate asshole in public.

http://actu.orange.fr/politique/scan...me_142222.html
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Last edited by ledocs; 05-31-2011 at 08:26 AM.. Reason: link to article concerning post-DSK fallout in France added
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  #39  
Old 05-25-2011, 01:22 AM
Diane1976 Diane1976 is offline
 
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Default Re: Cosmopolitan Disdain?

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Originally Posted by Florian View Post
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.
I didn't like some of the remarks in a couple of the diavlogs about the DSK case, and a lot of articles I saw, because some people seemed to take the opportunity of that case to attack the whole of France and/or Europe. It seemed stupid to me. There are lots of places where the private lives of politicians aren't pried into and exposed as much as they are in the US, not only their sexual affairs but their religious beliefs and so on, but it doesn't mean people in those places all approve of rape, which seemed to be the implication of some of the remarks.

But, I didn't get why you picked on Wonderment because he didn't do that. He really just talked about the case itself.
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Old 05-24-2011, 10:11 AM
stephanie stephanie is offline
 
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Default 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.]

Last edited by stephanie; 05-24-2011 at 11:35 AM..
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