First  Prev  1  2  3  4  Next  Last
Extended Discussion should be "extended"
Posted 7/10/10 , edited 7/10/10
I bet that if it would be organised like that, that it would attract a lot more intellectually active users. 'Extended Discussion' is just wayyyy too broad of a description to use as a point of initiation for 'Academic' discussions, and debates. It 'scares' people away, because it's a direction-less board, where people's only purpose is to post long, and tiring posts. Actually, Extended Discussion should be replaced with something else: Zone for Thinkers, Knowledge Seekers, or something along those lines.. Well, that's my opinion anyway..
maffoo 
79814 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
35 / M / England
Offline
Posted 7/10/10

farmbird wrote:

Subsections of ED. there's a thought!!
Religion; Government ; Science (-subjects NOT related to religious argument!) ; Sociology (such as cultural or anthropological themes); Current Events ( in the news); etc.
Could these types of distinctions really be viable?


I'm not sure that it would be possible to have such neat divisions. For example, a thread on a science topic such as genetically modified organisms could touch on the pure science, ethics, philosophy, religion, government policy etc. Similarly, a thread about a terrorist attack could stray from current affairs into religion, sociology etc.

As for the OP's question of why people always bring up religion, IMO it's because religion as a topic is inclusive; everyone can have a a view on it, whether religious or atheist, or whichever country they're from. Politics can be exclusive as a lot of it is particular to a specific country (I'm English, so I am not (directly) affected by a lot of US politics, for example) so only very generic questions like "Was the Iraq war a good thing?" or "Is capitalism better than communism?" will get a lot of response. Other topics may need a lot of background knowledge, for example how many people could take part in a discussion on quantum chromodynamics?

55941 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
58 / F / Midwest, rural Am...
Offline
Posted 7/10/10

maffoo wrote:


farmbird wrote:

Subsections of ED. there's a thought!!
Religion; Government ; Science (-subjects NOT related to religious argument!) ; Sociology (such as cultural or anthropological themes); Current Events ( in the news); etc.
Could these types of distinctions really be viable?


I'm not sure that it would be possible to have such neat divisions. For example, a thread on a science topic such as genetically modified organisms could touch on the pure science, ethics, philosophy, religion, government policy etc. Similarly, a thread about a terrorist attack could stray from current affairs into religion, sociology etc.

As for the OP's question of why people always bring up religion, IMO it's because religion as a topic is inclusive; everyone can have a a view on it, whether religious or atheist, or whichever country they're from. Politics can be exclusive as a lot of it is particular to a specific country (I'm English, so I am not (directly) affected by a lot of US politics, for example) so only very generic questions like "Was the Iraq war a good thing?" or "Is capitalism better than communism?" will get a lot of response. Other topics may need a lot of background knowledge, for example how many people could take part in a discussion on quantum chromodynamics?



--MMM........, thank you for putting into words the very thoughts mulling around in my own head while pondering the responses I read from others in this thread. I have to say I really cannot disagree with the points you make. Yet, the optimist in me, that which prefers to look for the possible best in others, still votes to give this venture a try. Nothing ventured nothing gained. & -- Fore warned is fore armed. Discussions here of the pros & cons, formats, possible outcomes, all are positive ways to test what might be accomplished, or what may be better to avoid. I thank you for stepping up to the plate & sharing your insight
5229 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
24 / M / Mammago Garage, Y...
Offline
Posted 7/10/10

ShroomInferno wrote:

Like I said, more subsections will make it look more organised, and help users to orientate themselves better in ED. ( I suggested this ages ago, when I was still active on this board )

Here are a few that could certainly be added:

Science
- Linguistics
- General Science & Technology
- Human Science (psychology, cognition, sociology, anthropology)
- Earth Science (environment, climate, geology)
- Comparative Religion
- Pseudoscience
- Biology & Genetics

Philosophy
- General Philosophy
- Eastern Philosophy
- Religion
- Ethics, Morality & Justice

World
- World Events
- Politics
- History

Life
- Health & Fitness
- Art & Cultures
- Free Thoughts (random ideas, thoughts)




The overall idea and structure is nice, but I think some of these sections are too narrow and won't attract many posters or threads, if any. I think we should base the sections off of the types of threads that are currently in ED, and as far as I know there aren't many about things like linguistics or pseudoscience.
Posted 7/10/10 , edited 7/10/10
If you want to discuss the ethics of genetically modified organisms, then the OP will look accordingly, and therefore be in the ethics, morality & justice section.

If a thread is based on a News article, is based on something that happened just recently then it comes into the World Events section, no matter whether the on-going discussion will eventually move into a specific direction -- eventually if it becomes a 'topic' in itself then a new thread can be made in the correct subsection. Generally, the OP should already show its inclination, which it normally does. If you want to discuss, lets say, the religious motives behind terrorism, then it comes into the religion subsection.
I don't really see the problem with the divisions. If you don't want to discuss a certain thing on political grounds, but rather philosophical grounds, then make a thread about it in the correct subsection. It works perfectly fine on other forum boards. If you want to be unspecific, then you've got a huge forum section called 'General discussion'.

Cuddlebuns wrote:
The overall idea and structure is nice, but I think some of these sections are too narrow and won't attract many posters or threads, if any. I think we should base the sections off of the types of threads that are currently in ED, and as far as I know there aren't many about things like linguistics or pseudoscience.


Well, I specifically pointed out that a 'few' of them could surely be added. It's just an example of how ED could be re-structured. As for 'won't attract many posters, if any' -- we don't know until we try. Who knows, it could attract 'fresh' blood, new heads, new thoughts, new perspectives, etc.
Posted 7/10/10

ShroomInferno wrote:

If you want to discuss the ethics of genetically modified organisms, then the OP will look accordingly, and therefore be in the ethics, morality & justice section.

If a thread is based on a News article, is based on something that happened just recently then it comes into the World Events section, no matter whether the on-going discussion will eventually move into a specific direction -- eventually if it becomes a 'topic' in itself then a new thread can be made in the correct subsection. Generally, the OP should already show its inclination, which it normally does. If you want to discuss, lets say, the religious motives behind terrorism, then it comes into the religion subsection.
I don't really see the problem with the divisions. If you don't want to discuss a certain thing on political grounds, but rather philosophical grounds, then make a thread about it in the correct subsection. It works perfectly fine on other forum boards. If you want to be unspecific, then you've got a huge forum section called 'General discussion'.

Cuddlebuns wrote:
The overall idea and structure is nice, but I think some of these sections are too narrow and won't attract many posters or threads, if any. I think we should base the sections off of the types of threads that are currently in ED, and as far as I know there aren't many about things like linguistics or pseudoscience.


Well, I specifically pointed out that a 'few' of them could surely be added. It's just an example of how ED could be re-structured. As for 'won't attract many posters, if any' -- we don't know until we try. Who knows, it could attract 'fresh' blood, new heads, new thoughts, new perspectives, etc.
I don't have to guess, when I've already seen it done elsewhere.
Posted 7/10/10 , edited 7/10/10
It's nice to see everyone putting their ideas together to make ED a better forum. You all have me hyped up on this idea. Now the real question is how do we present this to the admins? And will they agree to it? I believe a minor setback would be too many sub forums, which means the admins would have to start looking for more Forum Moderators.
Posted 7/10/10

LosingOrbit wrote:

It's nice to see everyone putting their ideas together to make ED a better forum. Now the real question is how do we present this to the admins? Should it go in the form of a petition or a straightforward PM? You all have me hyped up on this idea.
Why not do both? It'll give you invaluable experience on just how politic should work within a civil manner of debating.
65911 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
54 / F / Atlanta GA
Online
Posted 7/10/10 , edited 7/10/10
You do a good job and thankless one at that. When somebody yells hate thread it gets shut down. Maybe they dissever what they get. I always find it funny if you mention a name of anti- liberal the first thing they say I hate that person then they turn it around and call it hate speech. I love to see the irony in this it so sad it funny. I know your job is tough but most of this will work it out on its own. One thread got shut down a 13 year old Muslim boy was defending Islam. Islamic zeolites are the only religious group that actively engages in killing other people at this day age. In Africa there how group of people being slaughter in the name of Islam, personally it just a cover for the clown in charge. To domfortress Your one to talk you go off on anything from collar of print to miss reading and your grammar is better than mine but you’re not that good to rip at people.
75434 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
49 / F / Center of the Uni...
Offline
Posted 7/11/10
Okay folks, let's play nice.

I really like this idea. Having subtopics would do a lot to organise the sea of dead threads that is currently ED. of course it Does mean more work for the mods.

If It would help to have more Mod volunteers, I can throw my hat in. Unless a core value of mine is violated I tend to want people to get along and be civil. I think I can be impartial. and If if there are circumstances where I don't think I can, I'm willing to recuse myself from mod authority for the thread in question.

This began with the idea of splitting religion off into it's own topic or subtopic (I really like the more general idea of multiple sub topics, did I say that already). Much of what I say can be applied to sub topics in general but I'll specifically address the religion issue.

Since I noticed and began actively posting to ED less than a month ago...(hang on... I lie June 4th is my earliest post to ED "Our English Language" just over a month)

Anyway since I arrived at ED, I've seen way too many religious posts that all revolve on the same theme.

The God-baiters and the holybook-thumpers cannot agree to disagree but neither will they budge an inch when arguing.

One of three things happens:
1) Someone posts an 'informative' prostelysing OP speaking describing the nature of a given person's beliefs. This is quickly hijacked by a wolfpack of people who believe otherwise and the shouting and arguing starts. The same points are repeated over and over by many (ie more than two) sides and the same sides ignore each others' points. Nothing changes.

2) Some starts an attack thread, usually the OP is a one liner or a paragraph at best. and comes across something like "Durrrrrr! Those (Non) Believers is So Stupid. I don't understand them". See (1) above for what follows. But also it seems to spawn a counter thread from the other side. so now we have two or three effectively duplicate threads on which (1) is occurring at full throttle.

3) Someone posts something about science (particularly evolution, but not necessarily) OR someone starts a moral or philosophical thread and religion creeps as someone inevitably brings in religion by claiming some some scientific theory or moral stance defies the rules in their particular holy book. This triggers a counter response by the God-baiters and (1) ensues.

Making Subtopics will reduce this turmoil by containing it to religion threads. Making further subtopic specific rules to keep things civil within the Religion subtopic will maybe contain these fracas' further. Of course more rules means more policing and more moderator duties. This can be handled by people stepping up and offering to work for the betterment of ED. First, we need a couple of mod volunteers (I'm one!) Second everyone has to READ the rules and be willing to report posts or otherwise notify the mods when they think those rules are violated.

Here's how the rules would generally work regarding subtopics.

If the topic is science, then you cannot bring religion in. IE if someone posts an opinion or mankind's destiny based on evolutionary theory. You CAN if you wish, attempt to logically and with citation attempt to argue intelligent design. You CANNOT however post something that says "This is @$@# because my Holy Book says otherwise."

In the Pilosophy section we can Stipulate that religion takes moral ethical and philosophical positions. and that some philosophies may be in contention with those positions. However, again. "Because god says so" is a simple, obvious argument that we can stipulate in advance. If you want to debate philosophy you have to give the posters something more.

In History we can say that we are talking about a secular understanding of works. 'Inspired by god' is not a valid criteria for historiography, all holy books will be treated fairly and equally as primary, secondary or even tertiary historical sources.

Any attempt to use the argument 'because god says so' will result in a redirect away from the non-religious subtopic in question to the religion sub topic.
----

Another suggestion I'd like to make is TO the religion subtopic.

If you're posting an 'information' post describing/explaining your religion, you have to keep it positive avoid comparisons, and keep the topic narrow. for example instead of speaking of general christian beliefs. keep to one specific belief (ie Transubstantiation of the consecrated host). Phrase it in terms of what you believe or your faith purports to believe rather than why some other belief is wrong. (ie Atheists can talk of the joys of not believing in god or strength of rationality but need not state that Atheism is superior because all other beliefs are wrong, instead why not spend time talking about what you DO believe and how that motivates you to do what you do.)

If posting to an 'information' topic such as the above, questions should be aimed at understanding the information provided rather than refuting it. Attempts to refute information posts should be treated as a violation of the forum rules for the subtopic.

If you're posting a theological question. such as "How Many Angels can dance on the head of a pin?" again posting to the thread to say, "You're wrong because my belief says that angels are actually made of Orange Tang" a violation of the rules.

Attack threads are a violation. Asking 'what's the point?' of a belief system. or asserting that particular belief system promotes immorality, slavery, bad breath is verboten. If you really want to question an aspect of a belief, phrase it as an open end question and keep the topic narrow.

This should take most of the fun out of trolling religion. I'm sure there will be lively debates. but they may be fewer and they won't be spamming the rest of ED to the bottom of the page because.. well ED will be subdivided and if you don't care about religion you don't have to go there.


This is just off the top of my head and is probably not articulated well...

To sum up.

1) If making this happen requires volunteers, I'm volunteering.
2) I think we should all take pains to understand the rules of civil debate, enforce them on ourselves and be willing to notify the mods when excesses occur. instead of responding in kind.
3) I think keeping religion mostly to it's own topic will at least keep the science vs. religion debates at bay. (religion can argue with religion and science with science)
4) I think having a few extra rules in the religion subtopic for avoiding trolling would also help.

Finally I'd like to make one more request.

I'd like to see Polls in ED. I really would love to start a "history's worst general" topic or "best era to be an artist" topic. that actually had a poll related to it. but that's me and maybe it won't fly.



5229 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
24 / M / Mammago Garage, Y...
Offline
Posted 7/11/10

LosingOrbit wrote:

It's nice to see everyone putting their ideas together to make ED a better forum. You all have me hyped up on this idea. Now the real question is how do we present this to the admins? And will they agree to it? I believe a minor setback would be too many sub forums, which means the admins would have to start looking for more Forum Moderators.


I say that first a moderator (which would be you I guess) sends a PM to the admins that says active members of the Extended Discussion section would like to add subsections to that part of the forum in order to make the threads more organized and easily accessible, and to reduce the amount of flame wars and off-topic posts. If they are willing to consider it and ask for suggestions, then present them with the list that ShroomInferno made and state that we would be willing to eliminate any of the proposed subsections if it would be too much of a hassle for the admins to make them all. Hopefully they'll be willing to at least add some of the broader categories like Religion/Philosophy, Science, and World/Current events. If they ask for signatures or volunteers then I'm sure we could get some.











55941 cr points
Send Message: Send PM GB Post
58 / F / Midwest, rural Am...
Offline
Posted 7/11/10
Hear,hear!
I will back these proposals, & offer whatever assistance I'm qualified to give.
Posted 7/11/10
If you've gotten the PM sent from me, let me know if you want me to use your name or not.
Posted 7/11/10
Same as what papagolfwhiskey had suggested, if it's more mods that you need, then I too am willing to volunteer.

I may not be nice when it comes to me dealing with certain individuals, but I am sufficient when it comes to me realizing the case and presenting the reasoning behind my decision making.
Posted 7/11/10
Unfortunately, you can't just say you'll volunteer to become a moderator. First, the admins would have to create a thread for wanted forum moderators, so that means you'd be going against hundreds of other people who want the same position as you.
First  Prev  1  2  3  4  Next  Last
You must be logged in to post.