Rename the formal debates forum

Discussion in 'SF Open Government' started by Varda, May 11, 2008.

  1. Varda The Bug Lady Valued Senior Member

    to "Debate with JamesR"
    or "Find something that interests JamesR, and then debate with him"
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  3. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    The Formal Debates forum is not my private domain. It is open to everybody.

    I have no desire to take part in every debate there.

    If you wish to have a debate, that's just fine. Go for it. But make sure you realise that it is a Formal Debates forum, and the whole idea is that debates there are to be conducted to a more rigorous set of rules than the informal debates that take place in all of the other subforums.

    On a more general issue, you seem to have some kind of personal problem with me. I would be very happy to discuss this with you by PM if you wish.
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  5. Varda The Bug Lady Valued Senior Member

    not really, ask invert nexus, I pick on him too
    you two just happen to be the ones that bump on me the most

    this thread is just a comment afer taking an overal look at the debates forum
    you're kind of crushing it

    I think that forum's potetial should be explored... it has been there for months and it has onl produced a couple of debates. Why is that? Are people just not participating?
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  7. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    I don't think so. Also, I have no desire or reason to want to crush it - I was the one who set it up in the first place. What I'd like like is for people to use it in the way it was intended - to lift the standard of debate we often get here. To be able to debate without the tangents, the witty asides, the personal insults and other bullshit that gets injected into so many threads. Note that I'm not saying that stuff is bad; I just see the Formal Debates forum as an alternative for those who want that kind of thing. All we're doing here is providing choice. I can't see why that's bad.

    My personal opinion is that most people are too lazy to use the Formal Debates forum. They prefer to post the quick one-liners off the top of their heads than to try to string a coherent 500 word argument on a topic together. They enjoy the back and forth of the instant response; they don't want to wait a day for their opponent to construct a carefully thought-through reply.

    Another possibility is that people are actually frightened of subjecting their views to scrutiny in a proper debate. Maybe they think their debating skills are not up to scratch. Maybe they are worried that their arguments are weak. Maybe they are worried people reading the debate will laugh at them. I don't know.

    Yet another possibility is that people are bad organisers. Few have managed to even articulate a proposal for a debate in a clear way, which seems to me like a simple enough thing to do. Have a clear topic, for which there are conflicting points of view. Agree on a few rules, or use the sample rules provided, and you're away. It shouldn't be rocket science, but many people seem to think it is, and don't get to square one.

    Finally, it seems to me that people tend to propose one-sided topics. There's little point trying to organise a debate about whether bananas are yellow - nobody is seriously going to try to argue the negative.

    I am surprised, and disappointed, however, that nobody has yet seen fit to debate "Is there a God?", or "Israel vs. Palestine - who has more right to Gaza strip?" or even "Hillary or Obama? Who would make a better President?". Or what about "Abortion - right to choose vs. right to life?"

    All of these topics are debated ad nauseam in other subforums, so why won't anybody put in just a little more effort to make their case formally on these topics?
  8. The Devil Inside Banned Banned

    wow, you certainly have a high opinion of the members here.
    maybe people just tend to think the idea is stupid.

    i know i do.

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  9. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    Is that a considered opinion, or just a knee-jerk reaction?

    If, on the off-chance, it is a considered opinion, please explain why you think the idea is stupid. I always appreciate constructive criticism.
  10. The Devil Inside Banned Banned

    oh, it is quite considered.
    ive been told by you multiple times that this is not a social forum, not a discussion forum, etc.

    the fact that you would have to set aside someplace to have organized, play-by-the-rules debates is ludicrous in respect to previous statements you have made.
    it undercuts your authority (by far your largest demonstrated trait) to go back and create an entire subforum for this.

    enforce the "formal debates" rules on the entire macroforum, or perhaps set aside certain areas where rhetoric, personal attacks, etc will be offenses.

    but have a code that is stuck to for the entirety, rather than letting mods decide for themselves.
  11. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

    How about deleting it? Nobody is using it anyway... I like the idea, but the rules are a bit anal...
  12. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    I doubt it. Clearly, this is a social forum, among other things. And if it isn't a discussion forum, then what kind of a forum do you think it is? For that matter, what kind of internet forum isn't a discussion forum? Isn't discussion kind of implied by the word "forum"?

    Notice, however, that it is not "play by my rules". It is "play by rules agreed among the participants in the debate", subject only to a few restrictions related to the actual purpose and meaning of a "formal debate". You might like to actually read the sticky thread explaining how the Formal Debates forum is supposed to work.

    Fine. I'm happy to live with that. We'll see how it goes.
  13. The Devil Inside Banned Banned

    why have you told me to "take my socializing elsewhere", and "this is not a forum for socializing casually", etc?

    clearly, you cant stick to your own least not when they contradict what you are saying currently.
  14. The Devil Inside Banned Banned

    and you might like to actually show respect to people who are pointing out your over intellectualization of something so trivial in a reasonable fashion.
    what makes you think i havent read the stickies?

    the idea of that subforum is stupid.
  15. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    I don't know. Must have been a bout of insanity. Assuming it happened, of course.

    You seem angry.

    Maybe if you had a better record on this forum, you'd have earned more respect.

    Your posts.

    So you said. Well, I'll note that down. Thankyou for the feedback.
  16. Gustav Banned Banned

    this is absurd
    disingenuous and petty considerations
    a frikkin non issue
    people simply cannot find any legitimate complaints these days

    you obviously have too much time on your hands, james
  17. The Devil Inside Banned Banned

    oh, it happened. thanks for calling me a liar.

    so the employees of this forum arent required to treat members with dignity and respect? ahhhh! now it all makes sense.

    and ill say it again. the subforum idea is stupid. i say this being fully aware of's theme, the theme of said subforum, and the topic at hand.
    the idea of a special place set aside where civilized conversation takes place is stupid, and is just a sign that this forum as a whole is sliding downhill.

    just curious, what is the PhD to non-college graduate ratio of your membership?
  18. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

    TDI, why do you care? I remember in the past you contributed to the forum. One day you disappeared and then next you came back shitting all over the place and spamming spurious monkey.

    If you genuiunely want to participate then you are most welcome and if you want to take a dump and advertize monkeys then take it elsewhere.
  19. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    You appear to be drifting off topic.

    You have made your point. You think the Formal Debates forum is stupid. Fine. We've got that. Move on.
  20. The Devil Inside Banned Banned

    no, the off topic posts came from somewhere else.
    deleting the offending posts wont change the truth, you revisionist you.

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