Staredit Network > Forums > Staredit Network > Topic: The state of Serious Discussion
The state of Serious Discussion
Oct 17 2012, 9:38 am
By: Jack  

Oct 17 2012, 9:38 am Jack Post #1

>be faceless void >mfw I have no face

Roy, Lanthanide, Vrael, and I had a short discussion in the shoutbox. I (and Vrael) expressed a lack of satisfaction with the way SD is currently moderated, as I feel it is slack and allows a lot of garbage to get bandied about. To better express what exactly it is I feel is wrong with the current standard, I've gone through the first page of the topic and added my opinions in bold underneath each post. I would say it is clear that the current standard upheld in SD is not the standard presented by the SD rules.

I have endeavoured to stay neutral in my points made, regardless of my personal opinion on the subject matter and posters.

Collapsable Box

I think that the situation should be remedied by enforcing the standard of the SD rules in SD; alternatively, if SD cannot be moderated at that standard, SD should become a closed forum and any discussion can take place in LD, where the rules are enforced better (enforced according to the set forth standard, that is.)

Red classic.

"In short, their absurdities are so extreme that it is painful even to quote them."

Oct 17 2012, 3:25 pm CecilSunkure Post #2

I'm not active enough to moderate the SD on my own anymore. I'd say a new addition to the SD moderation is required, and probably a removal of Dapperdan.


Oct 17 2012, 3:45 pm Fire_Kame Post #3

a left leaning coexistence nut

I are being too hard on the posts. The problem with my beliefs is that I'm in a very small minority - it is easy to find left or right arguments, but pretty near impossible to find reputable sources that go the moderate or libertarian paths (which most of what I believe is part of). Not to mention, I never said "The coutnry would benefit from this" and social problems are very emotionally charged - it is very hard to quantify social change.

This isn't just me backing myself up, but it is true of a lot of people and a lot of arguments.

How would you explain your personal relationship with God? What articles/citations would you use? I know that you are a very literal person and rely on the Bible heavily for support, but if your opponent disregards the Bible as a credible source, you're wasting your time using it as a citation. Personally, I find using the Bible in most arguments to be very weak, especially since knowing the audience it isn't taen very seriously; and I get annoyed by people where every so many words is a link to Wikipedia, which anyone can link to, or to websites/images that blatantly hold bias, especially when these things are the bulk of the post or their topic (ie, Lanthanide was posting links in a dead topic and didn't substantiate much of a post beyond that; in the process, he quadruple posted before action was taken). I think you skipped your own posts in this topic, didn't you say in the same topic if countries were more like African nations on the topic of gay marriage everyone would benefit? I didn't see any proof to back this statement up. Not to mention the volatility of the statement.

I guess my problem is - what is wrong with stating an opinion? Isn't everything in an argument an opinion with rationale?

I also have very little problem with some forms of anecdotal evidence. If we're talking about how ethical it is to eat meat, and I have an opponent come on and say "coming from a farm family, this is how we do it..." I want to know that. I want to know why my opponent thinks the way he does, and this helps. Now going on in the conversation, having someone come up with "well my friend of a friend's cousin was tasered by a federal agent"...that I draw the line.

Anyways, if I could form the rules for SD:

1)An argument should assume that all participants are of reasonable intelligence and background on the matter. In topics where this is not the case, either due to obscurity or how recent the topic has popped up in the media, articles and citations should be provided to assist the participants with researching the topic.

2) There's no reason for posts to be under a paragraph in length. If you can't say more than three sentences on the topic, you're better off reading up on the topic and returning when you have more information. If there is some question about the OP, it should be reported and moderation should deal with it; you should not post "so what's the question?" or similar comments.

3) Responses using statistics, comparisons, or recent articles should include links to these items. These responses should not include just the video/article/etc, but also a few sentences (at the least) explaining its relevance to the topic and the author of the response's opinion of the movie. Just posting links without justification is what the shoutbox is for.

4) Responding to other users should require more than three sentences per quoted response. This means if you have split your opponent's argument into three separate sections, each section must have a paragraph or more outlining why you think they are incorrect or are lacking in information. If you are quoting to doubt a statistic or fact, find your own statistic to argue from in the response post.

5) If you find yourself restating your previous posts, you've probably run the course of your capability in the topic. Saying "like I said back here," repeatedly is annoying to the participants actually paying attention, and the ones paying attention are the ones you should be most interested in dealing with.

1) Keep in mind that everyone you are arguing against comes from different backgrounds, ages and experiences. Remaining sensitive to these things will help build your argument better and will create a more conducive environment for discussion.

2) If you're not willing to change your opinions on the topic, and you're not here as a professional on the subject to provide clarification, you are better off withholding your comments from the topic. A debate is about learning and changing, not about butting heads with known opponents.

3) It is easy to get emotionally tied up in the subject at hand, but try to leave your emotions at the door. Nothing is a personal attack - and if you are interpreting something as a personal attack you should report it to moderation.

1) Lite Discussion is reserved for topics that require more thought or input than Null Discussion topics, but not necessarily for debates. Discussion on sensitive topics, polls that require long explanations, and similar should be kept here.

2) Serious Discussion is reserved for discussing and debating topics that are both sensitive and require more input than Lite Discussion. While it might suffice to post just an opinion in LD, SD should require your opinion and rationale (notice I didn't say links or citations).

...these are just my thoughts. I'm just as guilty as others at not keeping to these rules, but this seems to be both fair and achievable.

EDIT: I could do SD moderation again if you want. :awesome: I'd want some support, of course, and I'd want to talk to Devlin directly about it first.

Post has been edited 1 time(s), last time on Oct 17 2012, 3:50 pm by Fire_Kame.

Oct 17 2012, 4:02 pm Oh_Man Post #4

Find Me On Discord (Brood War UMS Community & Staredit Network)

Subsume SD and LD and simply call it "Discussion". It really should only be a slightly more serious version of Null.
This is a Starcraft mapping community, SD is basically just a side forum / off-topic forum.

Moderators should not have to worry about enforcing a bunch of stringent rules for what is essentially an off-topic area of SEN.
Especially since there is a shortage of active mods.

Also in my experience mods have simply hampered my discussion experience eg. Cecil shutting down the divine command theory discussion Jack and I were going forcing us to finish our convo on Skype. Now I don't know if this was bad modding or too stringent rules or a combo of both but when you start hampering discussion (the whole point of the subforum) you should know you are doing something wrong.

Post has been edited 3 time(s), last time on Oct 17 2012, 4:36 pm by NudeRaider. Reason: off-topic

Oct 17 2012, 5:22 pm Vrael Post #5

Disclaimer: Any and all lulz made by me in the shoutbox should not be misconstrued to be my actual viewpoint on anything.

As for my actual viewpoint:
Moderating Serious Discussion correctly is not worth the time or effort required. The members of SEN are not interested in any kind of genuine discussion, with few exceptions (by which I mean Jabok, JaFF, and Mini Moose 2707, as I have maintained for years. No one else). The internet is a poor medium for communication in this regard, especially considering how much of human verbal communication is based on the tone of voice and familiarity with the people you are conversing with. In a sense, posting in SD is just asking for moderation. The members of SEN are far too immature to have a real conversation and require constant parental-like supervision when posting in that forum, because they demonstrate time and time again that they are not capable or even willing to do it themselves. As sad as it is to say, this:
Quote from oh_man
Subsume SD and LD and simply call it "Discussion". It really should only be a slightly more serious version of Null.
isn't a bad idea. There's no point in trying to maintain an actual serious discussion forum on SEN anymore, it's neither practical nor ideal.

Edit: Also I disagree with Kame's proposed rules. But that discussion would be for a different topic most likely.


Oct 17 2012, 5:33 pm Azrael Post #6

SD is almost completely dead. Stricter moderation is going to reduce activity even further, which will make discussion there relatively nonexistent, which will reduce the quality of the forum as well.

People do take SD topics more seriously than LD topics. You can see the difference in quality while comparing them. You can also look at the first page and see that a number of threads have been closed for not being up to SD standards, when they would have remained open in LD.

I personally think it's fine the way it is. It doesn't need the ridiculously strict level of moderation from days of yore, no benefit will come from that at this point. Some of the posts Jack mentioned should be removed (like FaZ's wikipedia link); however, if someone has an issue with posts not having any thought/effort put into them in SD, they should just report them.

Oct 17 2012, 6:13 pm Fire_Kame Post #7

a left leaning coexistence nut

I do want to point out that I don't believe my rules are restricting, and that most people, most of the time, adhere to them.

Really if you want the SD forums to be higher quality we should outlaw responding to posts with a single sentence. It never ends in more than an attempt to bait the opponent.

Oct 17 2012, 7:22 pm Vrael Post #8

Quote from Fire_Kame
Really if you want the SD forums to be higher quality we should outlaw responding to posts with a single sentence. It never ends in more than an attempt to bait the opponent.
This is a result of the immaturity of the user base, not a lack of efficacy of the rules and is already adequately covered under rules 1, 5 and 6 in the current SD rules. The intention of the SD rules was never and has never been to regulate what a person posts, but the manner they go about posting. There are situations in which a single sentence response [what] can be both thoughtful and appropriate [the manner], especially when sifting through a lengthy argument that requires clarification on a particular single point before the discussion can move on.

Quote from Azrael
SD is almost completely dead. Stricter moderation is going to reduce activity even further, which will make discussion there relatively nonexistent, which will reduce the quality of the forum as well.
I largely agree with this, the one caveat being strict enforcement won't reduce the quality of the forums, but the quantity of posts there. Right now the quantity is so minimal anyway that there is no longer a need for the SD forum; the few users that do post there have no interest in the goals the SD forum and its rules were meant to accomplish.


Oct 17 2012, 11:26 pm Roy Post #9

An artist's depiction of an Extended Unit Death

I pretty much agree with the main theme Azrael and Vrael are presenting. We originally brought back LD for the wrong reasons, I think: there was a demand for a forum with more lax moderation than SD but would still be taken seriously (because Null certainly doesn't do that, even by request). The solution was to bring back LD, when it probably should have been to change SD to be more casual. The end result is a forum like Null with slightly more moderation, and a lite discussion forum claiming to be serious.

It wouldn't require more staff to increase SD moderation; it would only require an attitude change from the current staff. It seems more like a natural culture shift over time that adjusted how heavily the forum is moderated, and I'd be surprised if the majority think it should be moderated significantly heavier.

Quote from Jack
However, some of what he says falls outside of common knowledge and could be sourced.
You say that for the only post cited that provided a source. :awesome:

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