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Darkwing
2007-Aug-01, 01:02 PM
I can see where Interdimensional Warrior is coming from (q.v. this thread (http://www.bautforum.com/conspiracy-theories/62835-wondering-if-i-can-set-up-one-one-debate-jay-apollo-hoax-question.html)) in wanting a one on one debate. In reading any number of threads where an HB posts, it seems that the locals here attack the HB's proposals like a bunch of rabid dogs. Ninety-nine percent of the time they do so in a polite manner in full accordance with the forum rules, while the HB constantly evades, changes horses, or engages in ad hominems. However, from a reader's perspective, it sounds like one person is trying to raise an objection, only to get shouted down by the mob. Now I personally may think the individual mobsters in this case may be right in their arguments and methods, and the lone HB is way off base, but I think it puts the debate in a bad light.

Imagine if you're a regular joe who goes to some forum, and raise an objection to a locally accepted story. You'd get mobbed by the locals. Granted, it may be less polite elsewhere than here, but where do you begin to reply? The beginning, you say... So you reply to the first response you got, and then are promptly swamped again--but now by three groups of people:
1. People who criticize your reply
2. People who complain that you haven't responded to their specific question.
3. Latecomers who just read your initial post and reply to that, without reading the rest of the thread first.

Swamped again and flustered, you pick couple posts and reply to them. You then receive another host of replies, but each reply is from a different group of person:
1. People who criticize one of your latest replies.
2. People who complain that you haven't responded to their specific question yet (now, this is either a person talking about one of their replies to your first post, or a person talking about one of their replies to your second post)
3. More latecomers who just read your initial post and reply to that, without reading the rest of the thread first.

All of these people are demanding hard evidence from you, hounding you like dogs. You're also not used to the kinds of replies you get. Some replies are extremely direct and to the point--but they feel confrontational because you weren't expecting it, and the well known problems with internet communication being unable to convey tone of voice. Some replies have sarcasm--or, at least, feel that way. Some are self-righteous "Oh, we've seen your kind before and you're all the same..." Some question your abilities--not directly an ad hominem, but it can sure feel like one sometimes when you're on the receiving end. So you get flustered and frustrated. Neither helps your logical skills.

So how do you respond?
1. Say it's not worth it and stop replying. Sure, but it'll stick in your craw because you know all the locals will be bragging to each other about how you wimped out.
2. Lash out. Bad move, but when you feel backed into a corner, it's almost instinctive.
3. Keep trying. And keep getting mobbed. In the meantime your stress level goes up, and chances are your argumentative and logical skills are probably not improving.
4. Admit you were wrong. Some people may have internal doubts about their beliefs, but cling to them simply because they feel they are being persecuted. They just don't want to give in. That makes this the hardest option.

Isn't the goal here at BA to educate people? People here frequently state that the true believers are a lost cause, and we can only hope to convince the lurking fence-sitters. But sometimes the HB mobbing I see going on here seems counterproductive. I see an HB post, then I see one or two replies that are a cogent response, countering the argument and starting a discussion. But inevitably there are a dozen more posters who pounce, adding in their two cents, in many cases repeating the same arguments. Maybe the new posts add the tiniest bit to the discussion, or maybe they add nothing substantive at all.

Frequently I find myself about to post to a thread on impulse, and most of the time I stop myself because I realize that Iím not really contributing anything new or meaningful to the thread. Sometimes other people can handle it just fine without my help.

hhEb09'1
2007-Aug-01, 01:25 PM
I can see where Interdimensional Warrior is coming from (q.v. this thread (http://www.bautforum.com/conspiracy-theories/62835-wondering-if-i-can-set-up-one-one-debate-jay-apollo-hoax-question.html)) in wanting a one on one debate. In reading any number of threads where an HB posts, it seems that the locals here attack the HB's proposals like a bunch of rabid dogs. Ninety-nine percent of the time they do so in a polite manner in full accordance with the forum rules, while the HB constantly evades, changes horses, or engages in ad hominems.Please clarify. After reading that last sentence there, I'm not sure whether you are comparing the locals to a bunch of rabid dogs, or the HB's proposals are like a bunch of rabid dogs that are being attacked by the locals.
But sometimes the HB mobbing I see going on here seems counterproductive. I see an HB post, then I see one or two replies that are a cogent response, countering the argument and starting a discussion. But inevitably there are a dozen more posters who pounce, adding in their two cents, in many cases repeating the same arguments. Maybe the new posts add the tiniest bit to the discussion, or maybe they add nothing substantive at all. Could you present an example of that 1% that you are talking about? I'd look for it myself, but I'm not sure I'd be able to find that 1 in a hundred thread.

Swift
2007-Aug-01, 01:36 PM
Darkwing,
I understand your point, I mostly don't agree.

First, an HB walking in here and announcing "I'll PROVE the Landing were a fake", well, what do they expect but to be jumped on. Its like walking into a Police Station and announcing how you'll prove all cops are baby killers. ;)

For one thing, they never do any homework. I don't know about you, but when I first join a forum, I look around a little, get a feel for the land. If I want to post something, I would probably check that it isn't old news. Yet, the average HB announces "there are no stars in the photo" like this is some new thing we never heard before, and is shocked when we don't all crumble to their wisdom.

As far as the mobbing, it would be one thing if the HB would respond with something like "Please, one question at a time". I think people here would allow them time to respond to things. But I do not recall that ever happening. I know that the recent ones were explicitly told "I don't know" is an acceptable answer, but they never use it. They usually go straight to insults, sometimes even before we ask questions.

And a do recall a couple of times when lurking fence-sitters (as you call them) have politely come here with questions. They are usually treated very nicely.

Darkwing
2007-Aug-01, 01:45 PM
Please clarify. After reading that last sentence there, I'm not sure whether you are comparing the locals to a bunch of rabid dogs, or the HB's proposals are like a bunch of rabid dogs.

I'm comparing the locals to a bunch of rabid dogs. Polite, reasonable rabid dogs for the most part, but rabid dogs nonetheless.


Could you present an example of that 1% that you are talking about? I'd look for it myself, but I'm not sure I'd be able to find that 1 in a hundred thread.

JSPrinceton for one. He was a very knowledgeable, well respected member of the boards, until he posted one ad hominem too many and got banned.

tofu
2007-Aug-01, 01:45 PM
I agree with you Darkwing. It is a problem, but I don't know what the solution is. It's *so* hard to avoid the temptation to respond. It's like an addiction.

One thing that we might try is a private forum that only regular BAUTers have access to. An HB posts in the existing, public Conspiracy Theory forum, and then we discuss it in the private area. After a few hours, one person (perhaps elected) can summarize the posts from the private area and post it as a response to the HB.

Theoretically, that would work. I think that's what the moderators here do. They discuss a potential banning in private before carrying it out. It makes them look more professional because in public they present a unified front. We could do the same thing - but on the other hand, it does seem to go against the tradition of an open exchange of ideas. Maybe LunarOrbit's forum would be a better place to try this idea. He's done experiments in Internet debate in the past. For example, he gave MoonMan his own private forum that nobody else could read.

In summary, I do see the same problem that you see Darkwing, and I definitely think that it's something we should talk about and put some thought into solving.

Darkwing
2007-Aug-01, 01:55 PM
Darkwing,
I understand your point, I mostly don't agree.

First, an HB walking in here and announcing "I'll PROVE the Landing were a fake", well, what do they expect but to be jumped on. Its like walking into a Police Station and announcing how you'll prove all cops are baby killers. ;)

For one thing, they never do any homework. I don't know about you, but when I first join a forum, I look around a little, get a feel for the land. If I want to post something, I would probably check that it isn't old news. Yet, the average HB announces "there are no stars in the photo" like this is some new thing we never heard before, and is shocked when we don't all crumble to their wisdom.

I agree with you completely here. My point is, one or two people explaining that you shouldn't see stars in the photos is enough. I'm mainly talking about the 30 more who jump in and say it when it's already been said many times in the thread.


As far as the mobbing, it would be one thing if the HB would respond with something like "Please, one question at a time". I think people here would allow them time to respond to things. But I do not recall that ever happening. I know that the recent ones were explicitly told "I don't know" is an acceptable answer, but they never use it. They usually go straight to insults, sometimes even before we ask questions.

Sure, "Please, one question at a time" might help. But when you get so many responses at once--all trashing your view, the natural reaction is to get defensive. Clearly it would better if an HB politely asked everyone to slow down instead of panicking and/or resorting to insults. Should we give them the benefit of the doubt and cut them a tiny amount of slack? Considering the bad attitudes of past HBs, perhaps not.

I'm suggesting that rather than put them on the defensive with a barrage of replies, maybe let a couple of people handle it and let it play out a bit. If the HB still resorts to insults, that's the HB's fault. But I do think that an HB is more likely to resort to insults faster if he/she is mobbed.


And a do recall a couple of times when lurking fence-sitters (as you call them) have politely come here with questions. They are usually treated very nicely.

Yes, I agree with you here.

hhEb09'1
2007-Aug-01, 02:05 PM
I'm comparing the locals to a bunch of rabid dogs. Polite, reasonable rabid dogs for the most part, but rabid dogs nonetheless. makes sense :)

JSPrinceton for one. He was a very knowledgeable, well respected member of the boards, until he posted one ad hominem too many and got banned.I think you just made a point for our side :)

Doesn't matter who you are, you have to obey the rules. IDW?

Besides, JS Princeton (note space for those looking into this piece of BAUT history) was banned almost four years ago. I would've thought you had more recent examples, and examples of the mob mentality, rather than a single renegade poster.

Jim
2007-Aug-01, 02:12 PM
... I think that's what the moderators here do. They discuss a potential banning in private before carrying it out. ...

Rats! I can't decide which response to give, "Nah, we act mostly on whim" or "You're right... and we have been talking about you."

Seriously, though, one thing most Members know about and use is the report function (that little red triangle) to alert Mods when someone seems to be crossing the line. HBs are encouraged to use it, too, if someone gets inappropriately insistent, or abusive, or generally jerkish. Few ever do.

R.A.F.
2007-Aug-01, 02:17 PM
...I definitely think that it's something we should talk about and put some thought into solving.

This is a public forum. The only "solution" is to restrict who would be responding, which would make this NOT a public forum.

The problem for Moon hoax proponents is that they don't have evidence to back up their ideas, not that too many people are "attacking" them.

Fazor
2007-Aug-01, 02:19 PM
The problem I have against requesting a "one on one debate" on a public forum is simply that they are already free to discuss anything one-on-one via e-mail, IM, or if whoever you wish to debate doesn't list those, through PM's.

So calling out a one-on-one debate in the forum itself is not the place for such discussion. No one is barring the ability to debate one on one, but if you only want the one person's input, then why do you demand the coversation be held publically? If you want everyone to see your points or theory, then it's unfare to tell them they cannot comment on them.

Therefore demanding a public, but one-on-one debate comes off as more of a "hey everyone look at me, I can take on so-and-so". The debater is debating strickly so he/she can say, "look who I beat!". Jay is, IMHO, a master wordsmith with vast knowlege of...well, it seems just about anything that comes up (truthfully, I don't think Jay will deny it's as much a case of having acess to many great sources of information than already knowing it). But that doesn't mean there's no one out there who could out-debate him.

The funny thing about debates is you don't have to be right to win. So where does that get us here? If you want a personal victory for your ego, fine...debate away in private. If you want to explore and learn and make discovery, then you should have no problem with a public discussion.

This has been another one of "Fazor Ramblings." Tune in next week to find out why Barry Bonds should quit the MLB and become a Vegas lounge singer!

Jim
2007-Aug-01, 02:25 PM
The funny thing about debates is you don't have to be right to win.

Interesting point, and true.

Back in ninth grade speech, we were studying debate. Each of us was asked to suggest a debate topic. I picked a really good one that I firmly believed to be "right" in the affirmative.

However, when that topic was selected for use, I asked to present the negative because it was easier to make the case through an emotional appeal.

My team won the debate, even though we were "wrong."

NEOWatcher
2007-Aug-01, 02:38 PM
I agree with you completely here. My point is, one or two people explaining that you shouldn't see stars in the photos is enough. I'm mainly talking about the 30 more who jump in and say it when it's already been said many times in the thread.
Not to be combative, but to express my opinion, I don't think that this is necessarily a bad thing (although, admitedly it is irritating sometimes)

Being fair or balanced on an issue does not necessarily imply a 50-50 presentation of the issues. In an open forum such as this, the responses not only present the various flavors of a response, but also gives an indication of how far away from the normal thinking of the forum the concept is.

Sure, "Please, one question at a time" might help. But when you get so many responses at once--all trashing your view, the natural reaction is to get defensive.
I do agree with you here on this one. But; by answering the question in the first place will prevent a lot of the noise that is going on.

Even acknowledging that the question is a question doesn't occur in many cases.


Should we give them the benefit of the doubt and cut them a tiny amount of slack?
Absolutely.

Considering the bad attitudes of past HBs, perhaps not.
The initial post usually sets the tone anyway. When somebody claims they know better than the accepted opinion without giving any indication that there are other factors involved, or without giving any indication that there may be things thay may not understand, then they have already given some indication that they have stepped into that realm of la la la la.


I'm suggesting that rather than put them on the defensive with a barrage of replies, maybe let a couple of people handle it and let it play out a bit. If the HB still resorts to insults, that's the HB's fault. But I do think that an HB is more likely to resort to insults faster if he/she is mobbed.
That might be helpful, but how do you draw the line? How do you relieve the burden of the operators of the board? How do you cut down on the time before you present the poster with that first question that they should be following up on?

Looks good on paper, but...

tofu
2007-Aug-01, 02:41 PM
The only "solution" is to restrict who would be responding

That's simply not true, and not at all what I suggested.

Darkwing
2007-Aug-01, 02:45 PM
Besides, JS Princeton (note space for those looking into this piece of BAUT history) was banned almost four years ago. I would've thought you had more recent examples, and examples of the mob mentality, rather than a single renegade poster.

Yes, JS Princeton was from long ago...I guess I'm showing my age. I haven't been here for a while, and I started checking out the forum again. One of the first threads I looked at was the What happened on the moon? (http://www.bautforum.com/conspiracy-theories/40981-what-happened-moon.html) thread. joshuatree started with the standard HB nonsense, and Van Rijn responded to it. There were some other posts that contributed just fine, but after a page or two, more and more people jumped on the bandwagon. I'm just asking if that's really necessary. The first responders were doing just fine at refuting the so-called arguments. The less people the HB has to fend off, the less likely (one would hope) the HB would resort to insults. Yes, the HB had already started it, calling Van Rijn a government agent, among other things. But will the situation get better or worse when hordes of other people get involved? Possibly neither.

I want it to be known that I'm not excusing any bad behavior on the part of HBs or anyone else. Everyone has an obligation to follow the forum rules if they wish to stay here. I'm just looking at possible reasons why threads degenerate (yes, some are already in the gutter when the HB makes their first post), and trying to figure out how it can be prevented. I think we'd all agree that polite discussion is better than having to put up with or ignore the constant insults. What purpose does it serve to antagonize them further by mobbing them?

"If 30 people were bombarding me with questions all at once, I would handle it just fine," is not a valid argument. We're not dealing with you. We're dealing with them. They might not handle it the same way as you. We're not all robots, and I think we need to accept the fact that people are going to respond accordingly when people antagonize them. You may argue that they're just asking for it when they come to a public forum and get mobbed, but should we rub their noses in it? I feel that's counterproductive.

tofu
2007-Aug-01, 02:56 PM
Look, let's start at the beginning. Can we all agree that the following is the existing template for a discussion with an HB?

HB means a poster who is a hoax believer
AB means a poster who is an Apollo believer

HB: claim A
AB1: refutation of claim A
AB2: refutation of claim A
AB3: refutation of claim A

HB: ignores last three posts. New claim B. new claim C. new claim D.
AB1: refutation of claim B. refutation of claim C
AB2: refutation of claim C. refutation of claim D
AB3: refutation of claim B. refutation of claim C. refutation of claim D.

HB: nitpick an error in AB2's refutation of claim D. new claim E. new claim F.
HB: misrepresent the refutation of claim B by AB3.

Ok. Can we all agree that this is not particularly productive? It's fun. Don't get me wrong. It's great slimy gobs of fun. But what Darkwing seems to be suggesting is something closer to this:

HB: claim A
AB1: refutation of claim A

HB: ignores AB's post. New claim B. new claim C. new claim D.
AB1: before we move on to new claim B, please respond to my refutation.

HB: misrepresents refutation
AB1: no, I'm afraid you haven't understood it. Repeats refutation of claim A.

HB: new claim E. new claim F.
AB1: before we move on, please respond to my refutation.

Is that what you had in mind Darkwing?

I wish that we could *try* the above just as a social experiment. The way I suggest we try it is by having a private forum, so that all of us AB's can post whatever we want - and when the HB leaves our posts can be made public. But while he's here, we would put up a united front. I don't know, maybe it's hopeless. I just think it's worth trying. I think it would be interesting to see.

R.A.F.
2007-Aug-01, 02:57 PM
That's simply not true, and not at all what I suggested.

Sorry, I did not mean to imply that...:)

I just don't see it as a problem that needs "solving".

Darkwing
2007-Aug-01, 03:00 PM
Not to be combative, but to express my opinion, I don't think that this is necessarily a bad thing (although, admitedly it is irritating sometimes)

True, and this is a public forum, after all.


Being fair or balanced on an issue does not necessarily imply a 50-50 presentation of the issues. In an open forum such as this, the responses not only present the various flavors of a response, but also gives an indication of how far away from the normal thinking of the forum the concept is.

You have a point here. But after reading seven or eight pages of it, I think it can get tiresome. :) So maybe part of the problem is my own response to reading all of it...I just have a habit at looking at a bad situation and thinking, "I can't force other people do what I want to improve the situation, so what can I do to improve it?"


But; by answering the question in the first place will prevent a lot of the noise that is going on.

Even acknowledging that the question is a question doesn't occur in many cases.

I would say "most". It's a small hope that the HBs will behaving the way we would like that them to. I'm just trying to figure out how we can improve on our end.


That might be helpful, but how do you draw the line? How do you relieve the burden of the operators of the board? How do you cut down on the time before you present the poster with that first question that they should be following up on?

I don't know, which is why I put it up for discussion.

Darkwing
2007-Aug-01, 03:09 PM
But what Darkwing seems to be suggesting is something closer to this:

HB: claim A
AB1: refutation of claim A

HB: ignores AB's post. New claim B. new claim C. new claim D.
AB1: before we move on to new claim B, please respond to my refutation.

HB: misrepresents refutation
AB1: no, I'm afraid you haven't understood it. Repeats refutation of claim A.

HB: new claim E. new claim F.
AB1: before we move on, please respond to my refutation.

Is that what you had in mind Darkwing?

More or less. But it doesn't have to be completely one on one. A handful of ABs is ok. It just starts to get out of hand when we're up to AB15 and higher... Another key thing you touched on is for those original AB reponders to all stick to dealing with claim A. I think much would be helped if we all managed able to say "before we move on to new claim B, please respond to my refutation [of claim A]." We do need to be rabid dogs here, but we have to agree on the thing we're chewing on and not let go until it's finished. Acknowledge any other claims, but politely refuse to respond to them until the intial claim is fully discussed.


I wish that we could *try* the above just as a social experiment. The way I suggest we try it is by having a private forum, so that all of us AB's can post whatever we want - and when the HB leaves our posts can be made public. But while he's here, we would put up a united front. I don't know, maybe it's hopeless. I just think it's worth trying. I think it would be interesting to see.

I don't know that a private forum is the solution--I think too many would object to that... Self-policing seems like the only way, really. It's hard to get people to restrain themselves though.

hhEb09'1
2007-Aug-01, 03:11 PM
One of the first threads I looked at was the What happened on the moon? (http://www.bautforum.com/conspiracy-theories/40981-what-happened-moon.html) thread. joshuatree started with the standard HB nonsense, and Van Rijn responded to it. There were some other posts that contributed just fine, but after a page or two, more and more people jumped on the bandwagon. I'm just asking if that's really necessary. I went back and looked at that thread. It appears that the poster that engages joshuatree the most, after Van Rijn starts is ... Jay Utah! :)

Plus joshuatree's posts are very revealing in themselves.

I don't think your examples are making your case for you. It looks like you're complaining, in this thread, about something that isn't really broken.

NEOWatcher
2007-Aug-01, 03:11 PM
I don't know, which is why I put it up for discussion.
So; it sounds like we agree, but just have a slightly different set or tolerance of pet peeves.
What takes more work... Tolerating threads like this, or policing threads like this?
I think we have a pretty good balance now, and doing something about it may destroy that balance...one way or another.

tofu
2007-Aug-01, 03:13 PM
Sorry, I did not mean to imply that...

No worries. I just want to be clear that restriction is not the answer. Cooperation is the answer.


I just don't see it as a problem that needs "solving".

Well, if that's the consensus then that's cool with me.

Something else just occurred to me. Have you guys seen Slashdot.org? That forum has a user moderation system. If you say something interesting, people vote for it and becomes visible. If you say something uninteresting or redundant, people vote against it and it becomes invisible (only the subject is visible).

If we had a system where the HB's posts were always visible, but responses started invisislbe and required votes before the HB could see them (unless he explicitly clicked the subject), that might work too.

R.A.F.
2007-Aug-01, 03:14 PM
joshuatree started with the standard HB nonsense, and Van Rijn responded to it. There were some other posts that contributed just fine, but after a page or two, more and more people jumped on the bandwagon. I'm just asking if that's really necessary. The first responders were doing just fine at refuting the so-called arguments.

So what do you propose?...first come, first served??

If I feel like commenting, then I will comment...simple as that.


The less people the HB has to fend off, the less likely (one would hope) the HB would resort to insults.

How do you know this??? Sounds like you're just making an excuse for bad behavior to me.


I'm just looking at possible reasons why threads degenerate (yes, some are already in the gutter when the HB makes their first post)...

Again you've made a claim and I just don't see it. Please provide examples of where a thread was "already in the gutter" when an HB arrived.


I think we'd all agree that polite discussion is better than having to put up with or ignore the constant insults.

Tell it to the HBs.


What purpose does it serve to antagonize them further by mobbing them?

What you call "antagonize", I call "responding to anti-science".

That's part of what this board is all about.


I think we need to accept the fact that people are going to respond accordingly when people antagonize them.

Well, you've got that right...when someone ignorant of the science involved comes on this board and "basically" says, "all of those Apollo astronauts are liars", then, yes...I do get a bit antagonized.


You may argue that they're just asking for it when they come to a public forum...

No...I think they are "asking for it" when they post anti-science on a science board.

Big surprise, huh??

Darkwing
2007-Aug-01, 03:17 PM
It looks like you're complaining, in this thread, about something that isn't really broken.

Possibly I am. But then tofu agrees with me. Of course, we both could just be complaining.

NEOWatcher
2007-Aug-01, 03:20 PM
I went back and looked at that thread...
I don't think your examples are making your case for you.

Yes, the insulting, straying, and hands over ears started with a two post response to a single post before any of the "mob" even had a chance to respond.

It looks like you're complaining, in this thread, about something that isn't really broken.
Yep; that's what has me confused.
Although; maybe it's just a matter of using the back and forth to think things through.

R.A.F.
2007-Aug-01, 03:23 PM
Have you guys seen Slashdot.org? That forum has a user moderation system. If you say something interesting, people vote for it and becomes visible. If you say something uninteresting or redundant, people vote against it and it becomes invisible (only the subject is visible).

Problem with that (as I see it) is that voting would lead to personality cults...again something that is not conducive to a "public" forum.

NEOWatcher
2007-Aug-01, 03:25 PM
Something else just occurred to me. Have you guys seen Slashdot.org? That forum has a user moderation system. If you say something interesting, people vote for it and becomes visible. If you say something uninteresting or redundant, people vote against it and it becomes invisible (only the subject is visible).
Sounds good, but I do see the flip side of all these responses being very reduntant because they didn't see that the others made the comment.

Many times I will respond with a quick "layman's" view of an answer, but if I see somebody like Jay, or any better answer, then I do not post.

hhEb09'1
2007-Aug-01, 03:26 PM
Possibly I am. But then tofu agrees with me. Of course, we both could just be complaining.What is it that you guys agree on? Some real examples would help, instead of hypothetical examples, where you can make suggestions how you would have handled that situation instead.

PS: going back to this post
Can we all agree that the following is the existing template for a discussion with an HB?It looks to me that that "template" puts a lot of the onus on the HBer. I don't think we can fix that :)

Darkwing
2007-Aug-01, 03:31 PM
So what do you propose?...first come, first served??

If I feel like commenting, then I will comment...simple as that.

That's your prerogative. I'm just suggesting we each think more before we post. That's sound advice for anyone.



How do you know this??? Sounds like you're just making an excuse for bad behavior to me.

I don't know that an HB would be less likely to respond with an insult. I said "one would hope."


Again you've made a claim and I just don't see it. Please provide examples of where a thread was "already in the gutter" when an HB arrived.

I think you may have misunderstood me here. I was saying that sometimes a HB starts a brand new thread with insults and accusations with no reason. Such a thread is already in the gutter before anyone has even had the chance to respond. A degenerative thread is one when the HB first posts making a claim, then the AB responds, and then the HB insults the AB. One that's already in the gutter is one when the HB first posts with an insult.


Well, you've got that right...when someone ignorant of the science involved comes on this board and "basically" says, "all of those Apollo astronauts are liars", then, yes...I do get a bit antagonized.

Frankly, I get antagonized by that too. But all I trying to say is that you catch more flies with honey rather than vinegar.

tofu
2007-Aug-01, 03:41 PM
I'm still just brainstorming here. HEre's my third idea. If we had a way to convert a linear thread like this:

HB: claim A
AB1: refutation of claim A
AB2: refutation of claim A
AB3: refutation of claim A

HB: ignores last three posts. New claim B. new claim C. new claim D.
AB1: refutation of claim B. refutation of claim C
AB2: refutation of claim C. refutation of claim D
AB3: refutation of claim B. refutation of claim C. refutation of claim D.

HB: nitpick an error in AB2's refutation of claim D. new claim E. new claim F.
HB: misrepresent the refutation of claim B by AB3.

Into a hierarchy like this:

http://www.maj.com/gallery/tofu/babb/hierarchy.gif

I think that would be incredibly useful. This format makes it instantly clear that all claims have been refuted.

I really like this idea, because I see a way that it can actually be bolted onto the existing forum system. All we need is a set of volunteers to cut/paste posts out of the BAUT forum into this hierarchy.

hhEb09'1
2007-Aug-01, 03:46 PM
I think that would be incredibly useful. This format makes it instantly clear that all claims have been refuted.I think this (http://www.clavius.org/) is a better way :)

Moose
2007-Aug-01, 03:50 PM
Well, this sounds a lot like the "qualified posters" debate again. The problem with either the first-come or qualified-posters idea is that the next person to come along, who under these parameters shouldn't be posting, may well provide good information in just such a way to make a fence-sitter understand in a way that (FSM forbid) Jay might happen to not succeed in doing.

I would also like to echo that this message board is made available for public use. It seems antithetical to me to allow some users to discuss a topic but not others. Even our most restrictive forums never exclude participants. Only behaviors.

If the problem really is rudeness, we already have rules in place to deal with such incidents.

But the thing to remember is that reality isn't subject to debate nor to debate rules. Debate rules aren't even subject to truth, only rhetorical victory. Heck, reality isn't even subject to the available evidence. Our understanding of reality is, however, subject to evidence.

It doesn't matter who provides the evidence, so long as the evidence is valid.

It seems to me that a request for one-on-one debate rules to argue empirically demonstrable reality is missing the point utterly.

R.A.F.
2007-Aug-01, 03:53 PM
...all I trying to say is that you catch more flies with honey rather than vinegar.

Granted, but I'm not trying to catch any flies at all...

...and I personally can't stand the use of "AB", ie. Apollo believer, as "belief" has nothing to do with it...evidence does.

Darkwing
2007-Aug-01, 04:02 PM
What is it that you guys agree on? Some real examples would help, instead of hypothetical examples, where you can make suggestions how you would have handled that situation instead.

PS: going back to this postIt looks to me that that "template" puts a lot of the onus on the HBer. I don't think we can fix that :)

I agree that the onus is on the HB. But what I seem to be hearing is that everything is being handled just fine here, and there's nothing we can do to improve the situation in refuting HB claims--any and all problems are the fault of the HBs.

For an example:
http://www.bautforum.com/conspiracy-theories/40981-what-happened-moon.html#post1034461
1. joshuatree says the Van Allen belt makes moon travel impossible (claim A)
2. Van Rijn responds, linking to clavius
3. joshuatree denies the refutation, then makes claim B (apollo computers not good enough) and claim C (we can barely get to orbit now without mishap)
4. joshuatree makes another post, denying all nasa evidence, etc.
5. Van Rijn responds refuting claims A, B, and C.

Hhere, it might have been better for Van Rijn to just have stuck to claim A until he forced joshuatree to concede. By responding to the other claims rather than just saying "I'll deal with your other claims when we're done with this one", it fueled the fire. More claims under discussion = more people jumping into discussion.

Frenat jumps into the discussion talking about claim D (or higher, I stopped counting--the claim is the "Dark Side of the Moon" TV hoax was actually real)
Countzero posts, talking about claim D and claim E (joshuatree says he knows all about science and technology and claims it's all a conspiracy)

6. Joshuatree then references various documentaries (claim F: A funny thing happened on the way to the moon, and claim G: What happened on the Moon?) Frenat responds to claims F and G. CountZero responds to claim F.

7. joshuatree rants randomly. pzkpfw responds to rant, trying to get joshuatree to stay on topic. countzero reponds to rant. Van Rijn responds, sticking to trying to get joshuatree to respond about claim A.

8. joshuatree makes claim H (lunar surface too hot for film) and asks a counter question on claim A. In a followup post he makes claim I (spacesuits not tested or something)

It goes on from there. Anyway, Van Rijn tries to get joshuatree to stick to claim A. I suppose my advice here would be for everyone to simply talk about claim A, and nothing but claim A, until it's resolved. Everything else could have been ignored with the disclaimer "we'll deal with your other claims once we're done with claim A". If everyone used that like a mantra, just repeating it and refusing to answer anything else except the first question, it might have gone differently.

It's a matter of opinion that it may have gone "better".

Darkwing
2007-Aug-01, 04:03 PM
I think this (http://www.clavius.org/) is a better way :)

Heh. Link to clavius and lock the thread. Sounds good to me. :)

Dave J
2007-Aug-01, 04:03 PM
I can see Darkwing's point. It's easy for an HB to get quickly overwhelmed with responses, and trying to keep on a specific topic becomes an exercise in frustration.
Perhaps it's because so much of the evidence is interrelated. Perhaps it's new ideas being brought up by either side. Circumstantial evidence is notorious for taking debates to strange, non-related places.
Maybe the solution is to (try to) raise one specific argument at a time. If a rebuttal raises new issues, then deal with them as appropriate, or don't (being clear when you choose the latter).
The "dogpile" appearance is usually from numerous posts saying pretty much the same things in varying levels of detail and approaches.
Bottom line is that either Apollo happened basically per the historical record, or it didn't.
I think if someone wants a one on one with Jay, or anyone else, the only proper way would be via PMs. The public forums are for free give and take, and I for one have learned a great deal from them. But, as you note, they drift often away from the points at hand.

Darkwing
2007-Aug-01, 04:06 PM
...and I personally can't stand the use of "AB", ie. Apollo believer, as "belief" has nothing to do with it...evidence does.

Agreed--I was just using it as a convenient if inaccurate acronym to refer to "those of us on BAUT who refute claims of HBs in the Conspiracy Theories forum" was which getting ponderous to keep typing.

NEOWatcher
2007-Aug-01, 04:15 PM
I can see Darkwing's point. It's easy for an HB to get quickly overwhelmed with responses, and trying to keep on a specific topic becomes an exercise in frustration.
I still don't understand this. Who is it that takes it off topic? Yes; an overwhelming number of people are responding in many different ways, but I haven't seen a case where somebody other than the HB'r saying "But what about this other thing here".
I never see a responder say something like. "Well there are explainations for the radiation thing, but here's the explanation of the shadows."

hhEb09'1
2007-Aug-01, 04:32 PM
Anyway, Van Rijn tries to get joshuatree to stick to claim A.OK, that's like you'd like to see it
I suppose my advice here would be for everyone to simply talk about claim A, and nothing but claim A, until it's resolved. Everything else could have been ignored with the disclaimer "we'll deal with your other claims once we're done with claim A". If everyone used that like a mantra, just repeating it and refusing to answer anything else except the first question, it might have gone differently.

It's a matter of opinion that it may have gone "better".Yes. IF I were the HB in that case, and I were approaching it as a contest, my next step after that sort of response would be to go howling to the GLP that BAUT was unable to contend with any of my claims past A, that BAUT refused to answer them. Plus, I'd throw a few taunts down on BAUT, to that effect, then leave and point back to the thread whenever anyone asks if I've tried to present my case at BAUT. Hypothetically :)
Heh. Link to clavius and lock the thread. Sounds good to me. :)tofu? :)

PS: my philosophy, which tends to guide my responses here, is that we should promote open, but civil, discussion. I distrust fabricated responses, or behind-the-scenes discussion that is then presented as a unified front. I mean, what if someone disagrees with a small point, why can't that nit be picked? I mean, if it is a nit, it might not be.

Polite Reasonable Rabid D
2007-Aug-01, 04:34 PM
...and I personally can't stand the use of "AB", ie. Apollo believer, as "belief" has nothing to do with it...evidence does.

It does look like all four definitions of "belief" here (http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/belief) imply some lack of evidence, or at least a lack of immediately obvious truthfulness. I suppose "AB" could be used with B=Backer, although that might not always be totally accurate either.

Gillianren
2007-Aug-01, 05:14 PM
And sometimes, someone who is poster, oh, eighteen or so has a valid point, even when they're someone who doesn't normally. (I seem to recall someone, clearly someone of great wisdom and sensitivity, even correcting Jay on a minor--very minor--point on that thread!) Should we restrict the addition of the minor, valid point simply because three or more people are already correcting the HB?

I know intellectually that there are HBs who aren't rude. It just doesn't seem that we get very many of them.

Paracelsus
2007-Aug-01, 05:26 PM
Imagine if you're a regular joe who goes to some forum, and raise an objection to a locally accepted story. You'd get mobbed by the locals. Granted, it may be less polite elsewhere than here, but where do you begin to reply? The beginning, you say... So you reply to the first response you got, and then are promptly swamped again--but now by three groups of people:
1. People who criticize your reply
2. People who complain that you haven't responded to their specific question.
3. Latecomers who just read your initial post and reply to that, without reading the rest of the thread first.

Swamped again and flustered, you pick couple posts and reply to them. You then receive another host of replies, but each reply is from a different group of person:
1. People who criticize one of your latest replies.
2. People who complain that you haven't responded to their specific question yet (now, this is either a person talking about one of their replies to your first post, or a person talking about one of their replies to your second post)
3. More latecomers who just read your initial post and reply to that, without reading the rest of the thread first.

This frequently happens to a member whenever he or she posts a juicy new thread that either lends itself to lots of debate or is a hot topic, whether it is a Moon hoax thread or not. :lol:

You are not being singled out, darkwing, nor are moon hoax believers.

tofu
2007-Aug-01, 06:09 PM
PS: my philosophy, which tends to guide my responses here, is that we should promote open, but civil, discussion. I distrust fabricated responses, or behind-the-scenes discussion that is then presented as a unified front.

Point taken.

Let me throw something else out there for consideration. How many people here have been on the Internet longer than 10 years? How many different discussion mechanisms have you seen? By "mechanism" I mean a board like this one. This type of board is one mechanism, but there are others. Each discussion mechanism has its own strengths and weaknesses, its own tools, and its own quirks.

We use the word "thread" here on BAUT, but we don't really have threads. "Thread" is supposed to imply that as a discussion branches, that is, when an HB brings up claim B, that new direction is its own strand of the discussion. It's supposed to imply that if you aren't interested in strand B, then you don't have to follow it.

The vBulliten application that we use here on BAUT is typical of internet discussion boards, but it isn't really threaded. Oh sure, there is a "display modes" button there in the top right-hand corner. That gives you a tiny 100 pixel window that looks like a threaded discussion. The problem is that everyone here uses the flat view, just like the view you get on every other website. A website like Slashdot is truly threaded. Usenet is truly threaded. BAUT (and apollohoax and JREF and GLP, etc.) are not really threaded.

So that's why I ask, how many *other* kinds of discussion mechanisms have you guys experienced? What I'm getting at is, I'm really starting to think that flat-view message boards are inherently broken, and that this is one of the major contributors to the problems that we are seeing in conspiracy discussions.

I know that we aren't going to replace BAUT. To me this is just an interesting academic exercise. What other discussion mechanisms have you seen? Who here has spent time on usenet?

hhEb09 said that he distrusts "behind the scenes" discussions. Well, that really wasn't my intention. The more I think about it, the more I realize that what I was doing is trying to solve a problem that I now believe is an inherent limitation of a flat discussion. The problem is, as Darkwing observed, that 20 people vs. 1 person becomes difficult and confusing to read. And I'm guilty of contributing to the problem. I posted a message in the "what happened on the moon" discussion about the image posting. JayUtah replied to it. The point is, in a threaded discussion, someone would see that the message above mine was off topic and then they would skip my message and JayUtahs. But in a flat view, you have to wade through mine and Jay's

It wasn't my intention to have "behind the scenes" discussions, but rather to somehow take out all the duplicate and off topic posts. I think that's what DarkWing wanted to do also.

R.A.F.
2007-Aug-01, 06:14 PM
I suppose "AB" could be used with B=Backer, although that might not always be totally accurate either.

Apollo backer...ya know, I kinda like that. :)

Welcome to the board, PRRD!

Moose
2007-Aug-01, 06:16 PM
How many people here have been on the Internet longer than 10 years? How many different discussion mechanisms have you seen?

Is this rhetorical? For what it's worth, yes and several.

vBulliten is as threaded as usenet. It's not the discussion mechanism that handles the threading (which we have through quoting). It's the client.

NEOWatcher
2007-Aug-01, 06:24 PM
Let me throw something else out there for consideration. How many people here have been on the Internet longer than 10 years? How many different discussion mechanisms have you seen?
Why limit it to 10 years, or even to the technology?

I can see the analogies of somebody walking into a crowded room of scientists, and making a claim, and many of those scientists mumbling to each other and verbally attacking the somebody, and booing and hissing and such, and not going as far as physical contact.

The other option is for someone to call a scientist on the phone, and converse, and then conferencing in more people as time goes on.

I get rather frustrated when people view the internet as some magical new concept. I don't buy that. It's ancient old concepts put to a more efficient manner.

This board is a crowded room. Open you mouth and the crowd will hear you.

Lurker
2007-Aug-01, 06:46 PM
The funny thing about debates is you don't have to be right to win.

Interesting point, and true.

Back in ninth grade speech, we were studying debate. Each of us was asked to suggest a debate topic. I picked a really good one that I firmly believed to be "right" in the affirmative.

However, when that topic was selected for use, I asked to present the negative because it was easier to make the case through an emotional appeal.

My team won the debate, even though we were "wrong."
Ahhh... but debate is only a tool. It does not guarantee that truth wins out... it only guarantees that all sides of an issue can be given a chance to be heard. Unfortunately, as is the case with most tools, victory often goes to the one who is most is most skilled in the use of the tool.

This is why science, and the scientific method, tend to be so cumbersome... they must both be specifically designed with elaborate safeguards that attempt to accept truths over skillfully crafted arguments.

tofu
2007-Aug-01, 07:08 PM
I get rather frustrated when people view the internet as some magical new concept.

A discussion board is a mechanism that facilitates a conversation. It's a tool.

Is it really so radical that I suggest maybe, just maybe there is a better tool available?? You wont even consider the possibility?

That's interesting.


vBulliten is as threaded as usenet.

LOL. wanna bet?

Just in case we're not talking about the same thing, this is a threaded discussion (http://groups.google.com/group/talk.origins/browse_frm/thread/886a1edb98682fef/2d80425e94fdf4ce#2d80425e94fdf4ce)

NEOWatcher
2007-Aug-01, 07:19 PM
A discussion board is a mechanism that facilitates a conversation. It's a tool.
My point exactly, but all tools can be abused. How many people hammer in a nail with a pair of pliers just because they are handy?


Is it really so radical that I suggest maybe, just maybe there is a better tool available??
I never meant to imply that, but I am happy with the current tool.


You wont even consider the possibility?
Not when I don't see any issues that need solving.

Polite Reasonable Rabid D
2007-Aug-01, 07:30 PM
Apollo backer...ya know, I kinda like that. :)

Well, glad you do, I don't know if I can claim originality in it though. I always thought that's what it meant when I first saw the acronym, and I don't know if I thought that because I saw someone say it, or if it was my own invention.


Welcome to the board, PRRD!

Thank you, although the board should raise the length limit on usernames to at least 27 characters :)

tofu
2007-Aug-01, 07:37 PM
I am happy with the current tool.

And it's obvious that you're in the majority here, and I accept that. I think the best thing for me to do is to put this at the bottom of my "fun projects to do in my own time" list. Maybe if I had something to show you guys, rather than just words, then I could make a more convincing case.

I'd be very happy if I could put something together and be ready the next time an HB shows up in the CT forum. If I could convert a flat discussion into the image below, I think many people would see the usefulness of it. I wish that you guys could envision it because I know you'd give me some great suggestions. Maybe that can come later.

--------------
I want to convert this:

HB: claim A
AB1: refutation of claim A
AB2: refutation of claim A
AB3: refutation of claim A
HB: ignores last three posts. New claim B. new claim C. new claim D.
AB1: refutation of claim B. refutation of claim C
AB2: refutation of claim C. refutation of claim D
AB3: refutation of claim B. refutation of claim C. refutation of claim D.
HB: nitpick an error in AB2's refutation of claim D. new claim E. new claim F.
HB: misrepresent the refutation of claim B by AB3.

Into this:
http://www.maj.com/gallery/tofu/babb/hierarchy.gif

NEOWatcher
2007-Aug-01, 07:48 PM
"fun projects to do in my own time" list.
My list has shortened quite a bit due to apathy. :lol:


Maybe if I had something to show you guys, rather than just words, then I could make a more convincing case.
Having a hammer available does make a convincing case to stop using the pair of pliers on the nail.


If I could convert a flat discussion into the image below, I think many people would see the usefulness of it.
I see the usefullness of that now, but I also think that the variety of attitudes of both the HB and the mods will prevent any kind of rigid algorithm for dealing with it. I feel that any attempt to fix the problem will just shift the problems and responsibilities somewhere else.

Look at what happened with the new ATM rule and some of the side-effects that resulted in about baut.

We'll never please everybody, even though it doesn't hurt to try. I'm pleased...next?

Jim
2007-Aug-01, 08:16 PM
... If I could convert a flat discussion into the image below...

Ah, the BAUT has an amazing range of features. Including, in the tool bar at the top of each thread, a drop down menu called Display Modes. (hint, hint)
;)

Moose
2007-Aug-01, 08:19 PM
LOL. wanna bet?

I don't bet on sure things. There's no fun in that.

Another way of saying it is Usenet isn't any more threaded than vBulliten is. Nor are email exchanges.

These simulate threaded behavior by comparing headers (or quotes in the case of vBulliten). The medium itself is sequential. The client organizes the "thread" display.

Kelfazin
2007-Aug-01, 08:29 PM
Ah, the BAUT has an amazing range of features. Including, in the tool bar at the top of each thread, a drop down menu called Display Modes. (hint, hint)
;)

Ha, I never even thought to look there before. Awesome.

tofu
2007-Aug-01, 09:32 PM
the variety of attitudes of both the HB and the mods will prevent any kind of rigid algorithm for dealing with it.

I doubt there's a way to do it algorithmically. An HB might make three claims in one post. A human being (a brave human being) is going to have to sift through the post and pull out those three claims.

Maybe my idea is best used to grade an HB or to score a debate. Once we separate the claims, evidence, and proofs, we could add or subtract points from either side. Hmm.



Ah, the BAUT has an amazing range of features. Including, in the tool bar at the top of each thread, a drop down menu called Display Modes. (hint, hint)
;)

I toseeked you in this post (http://www.bautforum.com/about-baut/62844-mobbing-hbs-2.html#post1040932)

Here's a screenshot of a *real* threaded discussion.
http://www.maj.com/gallery/tofu/babb/thread_to.gif

I'm currently reading reply 7, by user, rev.goetz. Quiz time, for 25 points, how many people replied to rev.goetz's message? The answer is 2.

Now first of all, the thread mode in BAUT is obviously tacked on as an afterthought. For one thing, it's difficult to read. If they were serious about it, the window'd be about this big:

http://www.maj.com/gallery/tofu/babb/thread_baut.gif

Regardless, as you can see, I'm reading hhEb09's message. How many replies are there? There's no way to actually tell. The reason there's no way to tell is precisely that threading is tacked on as an afterthought, and all the non-threading features are left intact.

For one or two page discussions, like we're having here, that's not a problem. In giant CT threads, I think it becomes a problem.

Anyway, I wish that the threaded window took up the entire left-hand side of the screen and that people would actually use it, and that there was no way to break the thread paradigm. That'd be a big improvement.

As I've said, and some other people have said, we have tools that we use to facilitate a discussion. Since I've been praising usenet here for a while, I'll now give a negative example from it. People do a lot of top-posting, or they fail to quote the excerpt that they're responding to (they quote a whole post and then write, "you've made a math error" and ou can't tell what they mean). When people do that, it makes it more difficult than it needs to be, for others to follow the discussion. One thing that modern intenernet boards have is a giant bulbous quote button, and it's so incredibly easy to use that people actually use it correctly most of the time.

The quote button is a tool. That tool helps us to have a more efficient, meaningful conversation. That's all I'm talking about here: tools.

It's easy to get defensive if you think that someone is attacking your favorite tool, right? I bet that if I went into a usenet group and said that we need a better way to quote posts, people would disagree with me and say that they don't see a problem. Well, that's just because they're so used to using their favorite tool that they can't imagine anything could be an improvement.

Van Rijn
2007-Aug-01, 10:12 PM
I agree that the onus is on the HB. But what I seem to be hearing is that everything is being handled just fine here, and there's nothing we can do to improve the situation in refuting HB claims--any and all problems are the fault of the HBs.

For an example:
http://www.bautforum.com/conspiracy-theories/40981-what-happened-moon.html#post1034461
1. joshuatree says the Van Allen belt makes moon travel impossible (claim A)
2. Van Rijn responds, linking to clavius
3. joshuatree denies the refutation, then makes claim B (apollo computers not good enough) and claim C (we can barely get to orbit now without mishap)
4. joshuatree makes another post, denying all nasa evidence, etc.
5. Van Rijn responds refuting claims A, B, and C.

Hhere, it might have been better for Van Rijn to just have stuck to claim A until he forced joshuatree to concede. By responding to the other claims rather than just saying "I'll deal with your other claims when we're done with this one", it fueled the fire. More claims under discussion = more people jumping into discussion.


Some comments: I repeated a question about his radiation claim at least three times. I also pointed out the board rules, and the requirement for answering questions. It became obvious that he wasn't going to answer that question (frankly, I doubt he had a clue how to answer), so I didn't see much reason to continue with that.

Often, a poster might not answer some questions (such as relatively difficult questions about radiation) but will answer others, leading to at least some level of discussion. In this case, other questions were asked, and it eventually became obvious that his only interest was to pose one question after another, then ignore the answers. That's when my interest faded out.

So, what do you do in a case like that? Moderators could lock the thread or ban him for not answering, but they probably don't like to help people like that get "martyr" status. And, if others want to continue in the thread, it's their choice. Keep in mind that this HBer posted in a "machine gun" fashion, one question after another, so there certainly was a great deal to respond to.



It goes on from there. Anyway, Van Rijn tries to get joshuatree to stick to claim A. I suppose my advice here would be for everyone to simply talk about claim A, and nothing but claim A, until it's resolved. Everything else could have been ignored with the disclaimer "we'll deal with your other claims once we're done with claim A". If everyone used that like a mantra, just repeating it and refusing to answer anything else except the first question, it might have gone differently.

It's a matter of opinion that it may have gone "better".

Either moderators could quickly lock down a thread or let them continue like that one. I don't see many other options. I don't know if the quick thread lockups would be better.

JayUtah
2007-Aug-02, 01:22 AM
I participate mostly for the lurkers. I know most conspiracy theorists won't ever see reason, but there's lasting value in showing that it was tried. That purpose is not satisfied in PMs. The visibility of public debate is what makes it great.

I find it amusing, if perhaps not relevant, that many of the ideas here mimic those against democracy as a form of government. Wouldn't we be so much better off with a nice efficient king than with the squabble of representative government gumming up the works?

It's not the numbers. The Joe Rogan incident showed that it only takes one person to derail a debate. It's simply the level of discipline. It's up to us to stay on topic. It's up to us to keep quiet when we can't say any more than what's already been said. Democracy works only when responsible people take it seriously.

One-on-one debate works well when the goal is to test people, such as in political candidate debate. It is less effective when the goal is to test ideas, although it may seem superficially better organized.

One-pace-fits-all presumes wrongly that all ideas are equally well formed. If someone presents a theory with dozens of holes, the dozens of specific questions that follow are themselves an indication of the strength of the theory. There is one ethic that discusses whether those questions should be asked and another that discusses how promptly and rigorously the answers should come. If the goal is to test the strength of theories, then the number of holes immediately identified in it is a part of that test.

Tucson_Tim
2007-Aug-02, 01:35 AM
I participate mostly for the lurkers. I know most conspiracy theorists won't ever see reason, but there's lasting value in showing that it was tried. That purpose is not satisfied in PMs. The visibility of public debate is what makes it great.


Thank you.

I've said this several times before: I learn a lot from these discussions.

Gillianren
2007-Aug-02, 06:27 AM
Personally, I don't like threaded discussions. What was that about not pleasing everyone again?

R.A.F.
2007-Aug-02, 12:56 PM
It's up to us to keep quiet when we can't say any more than what's already been said.

Pretty much how I see the current situation, ie. IDW and his A13 question.

He asked a question. The question was answered. IDW refuses to accept that answer.

What's left to say?...except perhaps show us how you arrived at your conclusion, but he doesn't seem able/willing to do that.

agingjb
2007-Aug-02, 01:11 PM
The moon landings did take place, and there is abundant and incontrovertible evidence of that fact. That said, surely the only interaction with HBs should to be ask them how on earth they imagine the "hoax" was planned, organised, and sustained.

As for the precise details of the cooling and heating systems on the Apollo craft, I fail to see how they are significant (although clearly interesting technically). We know that they sufficed for all the successful missions, that they were placed under some strain by the problems encountered on Apollo 13, and that those problems were solved.

stutefish
2007-Aug-02, 01:58 PM
Nothing prevents an HB from reading through a thread to get an overview of the current state of play, then returning to the first unanswered post since his last visit, answering that post, and ending with the caveat "due to time limitations I will be focusing on a single poster and issue at a time, in chronological order; I will get to follow-up questions by different posters once the current question is resolved".

But none of them ever do that.

Kelfazin
2007-Aug-02, 05:06 PM
The moon landings did take place, and there is abundant and incontrovertible evidence of that fact. That said, surely the only interaction with HBs should to be ask them how on earth they imagine the "hoax" was planned, organised, and sustained.

As for the precise details of the cooling and heating systems on the Apollo craft, I fail to see how they are significant (although clearly interesting technically). We know that they sufficed for all the successful missions, that they were placed under some strain by the problems encountered on Apollo 13, and that those problems were solved.

I personally like going into the details because no matter how deep or obscure the HB's try to go, we always have an answer.

NEOWatcher
2007-Aug-02, 05:08 PM
I personally like going into the details because no matter how deep or obscure the HB's try to go, we always have an answer.
The HB's always have an answer too.

But, the big difference is that thier's doesn't make sense. ;)

Serenitude
2007-Aug-03, 06:42 AM
I am against any form of "unified front" or "qualified responders". As any thread in the CT forum will show, we often correct each other, let alone HBers - that's how we learn. We all see things a little differently - I doubt there's a "unified front" to often be had, except in the case of technical Apollo minutia. Also, being a reasonably intelligent person, on a public forum, I would rather express my own views.

"Qualified" is hard to quantify on an internet forum. I could claim to be an astrophysicist. Does that qualify me? I could probably google the correct mainstream answer to a question. Then again, I may be the grill guy at McDonald's, but be a lifelong enthusiast-student and know the answer. Am I less 'qualified'? The whole point, the elegance of a public forum is in the sum total of all of the voices, the cumulative wisdom of all walks of life and perspectives. Anything quelling that is a damn shame, if I may be so bold.

And, unless I am flat out overruled, NO 1v1 debates in CT. If someone is feeling overwhelmed, they may ask for breathing room, time to respond to a specific question. If someone feels attacked, they can report it if it is not automatically caught. If an Apollo Backer feels a nub is getting "ganged up on", I would also encourage them to use the report button. But no 1v1 debates, no restrictions to posting - I simply don't see the need if the rules in place are properly followed. If not, the offending incident needs to be brought to moderator attention.

Edit: BTW, please read the last page of IDW's thread, where he reveals his agenda. The CT crowd, unfortunately, can sniff this out almost immediately. It can be hard to be "touchy feely" nice, and yes, that's a fault that maybe requires a fix, but there's no denying that agenda'd (sp? Gillian?) posters touch off a particular type of critical response.

Gillianren
2007-Aug-03, 03:56 PM
Personally, I'd spell it "posters with agendas" to avoid figuring out how to make a noun ending in "a" into a verb of that form, but that's just me.

I also agree that this is simply the wrong place for a one-on-one debate.

V-GER
2007-Aug-03, 05:17 PM
Well, here's a movie HB's and AB's alike should see:

http://www.apple.com/trailers/thinkfilm/intheshadowofthemoon/

Fazor
2007-Aug-03, 05:42 PM
Edit: BTW, please read the last page of IDW's thread, where he reveals his agenda. The CT crowd, unfortunately, can sniff this out almost immediately. It can be hard to be "touchy feely" nice, and yes, that's a fault that maybe requires a fix, but there's no denying that agenda'd (sp? Gillian?) posters touch off a particular type of critical response.

I don't know if I'm too knew here, or if it's just optimism, but even though the "hidden agenda" is anything but hidden, I always convince myself that maybe this poster will be different, or maybe that's not their actual motive. It's funny, becasue everything else with human nature I tend to be very jaded--side effect of study and work in Law Enforment, probably, but in the end, it always seems to turn out the same.

Serenitude
2007-Aug-03, 05:55 PM
One thing that helps is to keep in mind that tens of thousands of fence-sitting readers are going to follow the debate. You aren't going to change the HBer's mind. But your responses, and even manner, can be critical to the thousands upon thousands silently watching, who are asking themselves the same question, although more genuinely, and have tuned in to lurk to have a look for the real answers.

Engage and debate for them. It's why I do it ;)

R.A.F.
2007-Aug-04, 03:40 PM
...tens of thousands of fence-sitting readers...

Hundreds, yeah...perhaps even thousands, but tens of thousands?

That number seems a tad large.

gwiz
2007-Aug-04, 04:21 PM
Nothing prevents an HB from reading through a thread to get an overview of the current state of play, then returning to the first unanswered post since his last visit, answering that post, and ending with the caveat "due to time limitations I will be focusing on a single poster and issue at a time, in chronological order; I will get to follow-up questions by different posters once the current question is resolved".

But none of them ever do that.
Most of them claim they haven't time to examine the replies to their claim A, but appear to have plenty of time to post claims B,C,D...

JayUtah
2007-Aug-04, 06:10 PM
My general response to this point would be, "Cry me a river." The real world is chock full of circumstances in which one person's ideas are subjected to panels of peers or superiors whose job is to kick as many holes in ideas as they can. We outnumber doctoral graduates, marketing specialists, and political candidates all the time. Design and critical reviews are a daily occurrence for me, putting me in front of up to ten of my peers to present what I believe to be the right way to do something. It is not considered "ganging up" when panels of peer scientists sit in judgment on one scientist's work.

Ascertaining the degree to which some idea accounts for the evidence requires more imagination than one person can effectively mount. And it requires a panel approach in order to eliminate bias in the review. A theorist who has considered this theory well should already know the answers to many of the questions he'll be asked, and should be able to rattle them off fairly well. If he does not already know, then the multitude of unanswerable questions gives the answer to how well the theory has been built.

There is a difference between maintaining an orderly debate and maintaining a fair debate. Yes, don't deluge a proponent with more arguments than he can physically respond to in a short period, even if he knows the answer. But that's not the same as limiting the amount of brainpower that can be brought to bear to test an idea. The strength of an idea lies in how well it passes the worst challenge, not some token challenge.