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View Full Version : BA blog comments - what constitutes a good comment there?



Messier Tidy Upper
2010-Oct-17, 01:40 PM
G'day y'all

Hope its okay to post this here - my apologies if not. I'm not sure about the whole "netiquette" situation which is, really, what I'm asking about here.

I've been regularly posting (as 'Messier Tidy Upper' my username there) on the Bad Astronomy Blog.

I'm wondering, simply, what do folks think constitutes a good comment or a bad one there? (The BA blog specifically - & I guess elsewhere generally too.) Is it good to try and add a lot of information about something? To include links to sources backing up what you say?

Are more shorter comments better than one long one?

Is it better to address replies as individual comments or have a single comment with many replies to many other comments on it?

Its easy to get carried away with emotion especially on heated issues - and its easy to post things when tired that you sometimes regret later. I'm human, I'm often posting when tired or drinking & yeah, mea culpa, I might've stuffed things up on occassion. I'm also, I'll admit, not really great socially. :-(

I always try to do the right thing, to be polite, to obay the BA's no. 1 rule of "Not being a jerk" and to make positive contributions that inform / enlighten / answer &/or amuse.

I try to factually back up what I say & cite sources properly and include links for people to find out more.

I hope I'm suceeding and doing the right thing? Am I?

What do others think? Do folks have suggestions, pet gripes things they'd like people to do or not do or other related ideas?

Maybe the BA or somebody could come up with a "Commenting Dos & Don'ts" list that could be added as a sidebar item or referred to somewhere?

Middenrat
2010-Oct-19, 02:12 AM
I think it's about context. It can be tiring to be subjected to rigorous methodical criticism in a Thread which premises a less-than-scientific conjecture, even if it can be reasonably expected on a quasi-scientific Board such as this (given its denizens).
I'm keeping it deliberately brief ;)

ArthurReader
2011-Feb-09, 07:51 PM
From what I've experienced, commenting on the BA blog is largely a waste of electrons. Much as it is here.

agingjb
2011-Feb-09, 08:01 PM
I do wish the BA blog were at least reflected by links here, like UT. I feel that this forum is essentially BAUT now

Gillianren
2011-Feb-10, 04:33 AM
From what I've experienced, commenting on the BA blog is largely a waste of electrons. Much as it is here.

Do you mean commenting on here for Phil to read or just commenting in general?

Van Rijn
2011-Feb-10, 05:43 AM
I do wish the BA blog were at least reflected by links here, like UT. I feel that this forum is essentially BAUT now

The thing I think you're missing is that the focus of the BA Blog is very different from BAUT, or BABB before it. BABB was mostly about space science and space related ATM debunking, but politics and religious discussion was (and still is) extremely limited. On the BA Blog, on the other hand, politics and religious related subjects account for a large percentage of the posts.

Unless there was careful filtering of the politics and religion related posts, I don't think bringing the BA posts here would go well. People would want to comment or debate the subjects here, and unless it was a free-for-all, moderators would have a lot more work dealing with the wars . . . er, discussions.

As far as commenting on the blog posts, in my view, except for the science related posts, I'd just avoid them altogether. Believe what you want to believe, but there isn't much point in arguing about it on a blog.

Tensor
2011-Feb-12, 04:43 AM
G'day y'all

Hope its okay to post this here - my apologies if not. I'm not sure about the whole "netiquette" situation which is, really, what I'm asking about here.

I've been regularly posting (as 'Messier Tidy Upper' my username there) on the Bad Astronomy Blog.

Snip...

Maybe the BA or somebody could come up with a "Commenting Dos & Don'ts" list that could be added as a sidebar item or referred to somewhere?

From what I've seen on the blog, you do a pretty good job. Support your posts with cites (you normally do), short posts are normally better than long ones, but make sure you say everything you need. I prefer to answer one person at a time, but that's me. How you do it, is up to your preference. But the biggest thing is, as the BA says, is don't be a jerk. One thing to remember is that if it becomes a chore, it's not fun, or you don't like the rules, don't post. You don't want to waste electrons and your experience may not be what others are experiencing.

kamaz
2011-Feb-12, 12:30 PM
I do wish the BA blog were at least reflected by links here, like UT. I feel that this forum is essentially BAUT now

You say like it's a bad thing.

The BA blog front page currently has 7 posts. There's one about Bill O'Reilly, one continued character assassination of Harrison Schmidt (*), two that are strictly astronomical, two posts debunking media coverage of astronomical issues, and one discussing what Phil sees out of his window. So about half of the content there is related to astronomy, and roughly one third is about smearing people Phil doesn't agree with. The most hilarious thing on his blog is that the stories which have most comments deal with gay marriage. What this has to do with astronomy, I don't know. In short, Phil's blog is becoming another Pharyngula, where you have maybe 10% of strictly scientific content, and the rest is religious and political bickering.

I'll take the board rules, thanks.

(*) Schmidt may be wrong on global warming, but he spent most of his life advocating He-3 for energy production, what Phil conveniently omits.

agingjb
2011-Feb-12, 01:01 PM
Well I did say link to, not copy, the BA blog (and yes, of course there is a link in the pretty picture at the top).

As to BAUT, I think there is an asymmetry between the BA and UT components here.

If it is the case - it may well be - that the BA's blog entries (I'm not considering the comments) are so different from the BAUT ethos that even links with the blog entry title (roughly in Fraser's UT style, but without the partial quote) would not be proper, then I wonder what implications that has for this forum (which, may I say, I do value very much as it is and with the conventions and rules it imposes).

Tensor
2011-Feb-12, 02:39 PM
Well I did say link to, not copy, the BA blog (and yes, of course there is a link in the pretty picture at the top).

As to BAUT, I think there is an asymmetry between the BA and UT components here.

If it is the case - it may well be - that the BA's blog entries (I'm not considering the comments) are so different from the BAUT ethos that even links with the blog entry title (roughly in Fraser's UT style, but without the partial quote) would not be proper, then I wonder what implications that has for this forum (which, may I say, I do value very much as it is and with the conventions and rules it imposes).

I don't think it will have any impact here. At one time Phil was looking into linking the blog to the forum, however, he felt the tone of the blog didn't fit into the established tone of the forum. So, since I didn't see any official announcement, it appears that it was quietly dropped (if any admin or moderator knows more, I'd be more than happy to be enlightened). Since (as the moderators and admins have point out) Phil has become so busy that he hardly ever comes to the forum anymore, the blog and forum are basically two separate entities.

neilzero
2011-Feb-12, 04:29 PM
For me, short comments are a problem, as I strain to guess the meaning of the abreviations and acroysms. Even pronouns often lack an anticident in the text. Often figuring which post the comment refers to is difficult. It is helpful to make the post self contaned if this does not make it over wordy or long. Humor, and sarcasm is occasionally desirable, but sometimes makes for confusion. Avoid extremes is usually best. Neil

Gillianren
2011-Feb-12, 05:35 PM
I just miss Phil.

Tensor
2011-Feb-12, 05:57 PM
... Often figuring which post the comment refers to is difficult...

Neil, this is a very good point. If you don't, it can get confusing. What I usually do is to do this:

@6 fool.

This lets everyone know that I'm replying the number 6 comment, written by fool.