Jump to content

Bias in Posts


Recommended Posts

This thread is the result of a series of PMs between myself & KBI that stemmed from a recent thread. The following 2 posts are from that thread. I have taken the liberty to remove the actual topic being discussed and replaced it with "wing nuts," as the topic is full of angst and completely irrelevant to this thread. The fact that it is irrelevant should be kept in mind as you post here, as any discussion of anything other than bias, perspective and wing nuts will be considered off topic.

This is what I have witnessed in the recently locked threads that interested me:

 

(1) A new "I dislike wing nuts" topic opens.

 

(2) The "Chronic Complainers" all jump in to the latest thread to reiterate their supreme and proper distaste for (1) wing nuts, and (2) the preferences of those who enjoy wing nuts, (3) the oppressively impossible task of detecting, avoiding, or emotionally coping with the very existence of wing nuts.

 

(3) The so-called "Staunch Defenders of Wing Nuts" speak up to challenge the kind of thinking that would lead anyone to look down upon anyone else's rule-compliant preferences. They point out that a preference for the kind of hardware which are conducive to unscrewing things is just as valid as any other rule-compliant preference – and that the job of avoiding such nuts, if one desires to avoid them, isn't really all that oppressive.

 

(4) The Chronic Complainers respond to this logic with pretty much anything OTHER than logic: Obfuscation, silence, insults, silliness, name-calling and a variety of other fallacious rebuttals. The Complainers choose not to debate in good faith. They react to any challenge against their reasoning by making emotional or irrelevant noise while refusing to ever actually defend their reasoning.

 

(5) The Defenders get frustrated, optimistically repeating their questions and challenges.

 

(6) The Complainers repeat the cycle by refusing to debate.

 

(7) Yet another thread gets shut down when a moderator interprets one side's refusal to debate in good faith as an indication that the thread has gone "hopelessly of topic."

After reading this post, it struck me that most of the language showed that the author held a strong bias toward the groups in question. Even the titles of "Defenders" and "Complainers" are polarizing. Who would want to be a complainer when you could be a defender? Would you rather "challenge" or "make irrelevant noise"? It occurred to me that those depicted as "Complainers" might feel differently. I decided, in order to expose the biases & prejudices I'd take a stab at turning the post into one that a Wing Nut Hater may have made:
This is what I have witnessed in the recently locked threads that interested me:

 

(1) A new "I dislike wing nuts" topic opens.

 

(2) The "Chronic Complainers" "Staunch Defenders of Wing Nuts" all jump in to the latest thread to reiterate their supreme and proper distaste for (1) wing nuts, anyone who says they don't like something they like and (2) the preferences of those who enjoy wing nuts don't like such wing nuts, (3) the oppressively impossible task of detecting, avoiding, or emotionally coping with the very existence of such any suggestion that it is harder to find hardware they will enjoy because of all the wing nuts.

 

(3) The so-called "Staunch Defenders of Wing Nuts""Chronic Complainers" speak up to challenge the kind of thinking that would lead anyone to look down upon anyone else's rule-compliant preferences. They point out that a preference for the kind of hardware which are which is conductive to unscrewing things keeping things tight is just as valid as any other rule-compliant preference – and that the job of avoiding such nuts, if one desires to avoid them, isn't really all that oppressive manages to filter out some nuts that are actually useful.

 

(4) The Chronic Complainers Staunch Defenders of Wing Nuts respond to this logic with pretty much anything OTHER than logic: Obfuscation, silence, insults, silliness, name-calling and a variety of other fallacious rebuttals. The Complainers SDoWN choose not to debate in good faith. They react to any challenge against their reasoning by making emotional or irrelevant noise while refusing to ever actually defend their reasoning.

 

(5) The Defenders "Complainers" get frustrated, optimistically repeating their questions and challenges.

 

(6) The Complainers SDoWN repeat the cycle by refusing to debate.

 

(7) Yet another thread gets shut down when a moderator interprets one side's refusal to debate in good faith as an indication that the thread has gone "hopelessly off topic."

Interesting how a matter of perspective can change things around.

From the mods' perspective, here's the latest topic in their section of the forums:

Rehashing Angsty Topics: Why do they keep posting new topics after we close the old ones?
The fact is, in an argument between wing nut lovers and wing nut haters, the truth probably lies somewhere in between both camps. Unfortunately, when broad, sweeping generalizations start to be made about one of the groups, that group is a lot more likely to stop listening to the other unreasonable (in their view) people and their opinions. This leads to that old familiar circular rut that goes round and round and round 'til it gets shut down.

 

KBI and I have had a pretty great discussion about this, we agree on some points, but don't on others. I figured that since we were talking about perspectives, we should get someone else's views, so...

 

What do you think? :D

Link to comment

The fact is, in an argument between wing nut lovers and wing nut haters, the truth probably lies somewhere in between both camps.

I think that is also where the majority of cachers' feelings on those constantly rehashed and circular arguments lay - somewhere between those extremes. Few "centrists" butt into the thread because they know what the ultimate outcome will be. As you said...

[one] group is a lot more likely to stop listening to the other unreasonable (in their view) people and their opinions. This leads to that old familiar circular rut that goes round and round and round 'til it gets shut down.

In terms of these posters' persuasive arguments, the argumentativeness is great, but the persuasiveness is generally missing. It is hard to change someone's mind, come to some sort of common ground or even to "agree to disagree" when you are calling them a "Chronic Complainer" or any of the other terms of endearment seen in many of those threads. Who wants to be a "Staunch Defender of Everything Lame"? Seriously - why would anyone defend something "lame?" They don't see themselves as defending something "lame" - they see themselves as defending someone's right to place certain types of wing nuts. Conversely, the "Chronic Complainer" doesn't see himself as a whiner, he sees himself as someone who wants to better the sport by encouraging folks to place either a different type of wing nut or to place the wing nut in a different place.

 

As an observer, I have enjoyed reading the threads, but not on the merits of the arguments. Neither side has swayed me far from my original views, but neither side has ever really tried to persuade one another, let alone the general audience. Instead, both sides appear to jump right into the fray and attack - creating Herculean battles and epic threads. One of my favorite quotes is by Albert Guinon, "There are people who, instead of listening to what is being said to them, are already listening to what they are going to say themselves." This succinctly sums up many of those "dead horse" threads. Until the language (and the attitudes) of the posters themselves changes away from one of attack, I believe that the "familiar circular rut that goes round and round 'til it gets shut down." will continue.

Link to comment

I've noticed where any two groups of people disagree on something that is strictly a matter of personal preference, both sides end up repeating themselves, trying hopelessly to convince the other side that they are right. IE:

 

"I like wing nuts because you don't need a wrench to use them"

"Yeah, but you can't apply enough torque with your hand to secure many things"

"Yeah, but you don't need a wrench to use them"

"Yeah, but you can't apply enough torque."

 

No one leaves the conversation with anything.

Link to comment

Perhaps it starts with disagreement on a fundamental premise. This prevents common ground on the overt argument, which continues until both sides have vested their pride in "winning" the arguement, whereby seeing the other side is tantamount to losing a battle.

 

It's a fundamental problem with endless arguing, and it's why I refuse to have an unlimited debate with anyone on a particular subject. A modest exchange might lead to some concensus, but more than just a few rebuttals merely makes the other side more obstinate. I'm not sure what the ideal extent of a debate is, but I do know that somewhere in the middle of a disagreement I notice that it becomes a contest. My goal is to quit the discussion before it gets to that point. Anything beyond that point pushes the other side further away from my point of view, regardless of what I say.

 

Ironically, it was KBI who finally convinced me to walk away from debate after only a few exchanges; specifically, I learned from other people's mistakes in engaging KBI for too long.

Link to comment

I don't mind bias. We all have our bias feelings. I just want everybody to be up front and honest about it and not try to mask some kind of "undecided" stance.

 

What makes me leave quickly is when debate becomes more about "how" & "why" we debate and less about the subject at hand. That nearly alway leads to personal comments and a degraded thread.

Link to comment

These types of posts offer hours of amusement. It's been my experience that someone will post an opinion, then one of the Wing Nut Defenders, recognizing that they really can't argue against an opinion, and having too low a self esteem to simply offer a counter opinion, will label that person as a Wing Nut Hater, in an attempt to both vilify the person, and to continue the argument for the sake of the argument.

Link to comment

i know these subjects end with a deadlock most times and that, as you say, the end result would be somewhere in the middle but it's fun letting them run their course to see the opposing sides slinging it out between them.

i too learnt fast that you had better know your subject well if you are going to take on KBI :D

 

yes the terms used do show a bias towards one side. complainers does suggest a negative aspect where as it would be better to address them as wing nut preferers and alternative fastener preferers. even that show a slight bias.

the best would be each side being named wing nut and standard nut users.....

Edited by nobby.nobbs
Link to comment
After reading this post, it struck me that most of the language showed that the author held a strong bias toward the groups in question. Even the titles of "Defenders" and "Complainers" are polarizing.

Interesting point. Until you realize that it wasn't the "Defenders" that gave themselves a name that would sound heroic, it was one of the "Complainers" that came up with the name Staunch Defenders Of Everything Lame as an insult to the group that didn't want to complain about caches.

 

And now that title is being pointed out as something the "Defenders" are doing to polarize the discussions.

 

:D:D:D:D:o;):D;):D;):D:D

 

That cracks me up.

Link to comment

Perhaps it starts with disagreement on a fundamental premise. This prevents common ground on the overt argument, which continues until both sides have vested their pride in "winning" the arguement, whereby seeing the other side is tantamount to losing a battle.

 

It's a fundamental problem with endless arguing, and it's why I refuse to have an unlimited debate with anyone on a particular subject. A modest exchange might lead to some concensus, but more than just a few rebuttals merely makes the other side more obstinate. I'm not sure what the ideal extent of a debate is, but I do know that somewhere in the middle of a disagreement I notice that it becomes a contest. My goal is to quit the discussion before it gets to that point. Anything beyond that point pushes the other side further away from my point of view, regardless of what I say.

 

Ironically, it was KBI who finally convinced me to walk away from debate after only a few exchanges; specifically, I learned from other people's mistakes in engaging KBI for too long.

 

I see your points, and I often drop out of a debate after making my points and then spend more time reading the other point of view.

 

However, a debate isn't always only about the participants. Even if 2 folks are beating their heads against the wall and never wavering from their point of view, the audience who may be neutral or undecided can gain value by seeing the extremes of both sides. There's been several issues discussed here of which I was unsure of my stance, but after reading 6 pages of fervent arguing I was able to see the issue much more clearly.

 

It's another reason why I'd prefer to see less premature thread closings. A thread may look hopeless because folks are arguing without looking at the other side. But that doesn't mean the readers aren't enjoying seeing the 2 distinct sides.

Link to comment

I guess a majority of the folks have not honed their masterdebating skills. It is far too easy to constantly bring up the same old topics and same old answers rather than taking the time to research new leads.

 

I do not feel that the forums are a place for debate I think that they are a place for open discussion about geocaching related topics. I think it the folks who have good masterdebating skills like to come here just to practice.

Link to comment

I guess a majority of the folks have not honed their masterdebating skills. It is far too easy to constantly bring up the same old topics and same old answers rather than taking the time to research new leads.

 

I do not feel that the forums are a place for debate I think that they are a place for open discussion about geocaching related topics. I think it the folks who have good masterdebating skills like to come here just to practice.

 

I think good, honest debate is always a very good thing, regardless of the subject matter.

 

I think there's a lot of good, honest debate that goes on around here.

Link to comment

Of course there is bias. It is a debate where people have their opinions and want to sway people to their side. A big part of effective debating in a public arena is to distill your opponent's argument into a negative catchphrase.

 

You can effectively marginalize your opponent if you can create a unflattering folder and neatly file his argument in it.

 

Nothing at all wrong with that.

Edited by briansnat
Link to comment

There are certain topics that tend to draw the same people stating the same things over and over. I have gotten to where I never open those threads. Seen it, read it, not interested in it, so no need to read it. I suspect a decent number of others do the same. Which of course means that this reletively small group of people in the whole scheme of things really might not have the audience that they think they do. No real way to measure that though. Nor does it likely really matter. It is more just a random observation.

 

Edited to add: As for bias in general, people are going to have opinions and express them. As long as it is civil, debate is a good thing.

Edited by carleenp
Link to comment

"Wingnuts" is the wrong analogy. The proper analog is "ice cream" :D

 

Group 1: I don't like strawberry ice cream

Group 2: Then don't eat it.

Group 1: But the ice cream is sold in unmarked containers, I can't tell what flavor it is till I eat it.

Group 2: Look inside the container before you buy the ice cream.

Group 1: But I like peppermint and its often the same color as strawberry, I still have to taste to know what it is.

 

I really think the problem is that the two groups are not listening to each other. The stauch defenders of strawberry ice (SDOSIC) are not saying that strawberry is the only flavor of ice cream or even the best flavor. They simply point out that some people like strawberry ice so you have to live with there being some strawberry ice cream. The chronic complainers don't want to ban strawberry ice cream - and in most instances don't even want to limit the production of strawberry ice cream. They are asking for ways to avoid strawberry ice cream because they is a lot more strawberry ice cream now than there use to be. The debate is often over where the suggestions the SDOSIC side give for avoiding strawberry ice cream works or not. There is really no way to avoid all strawberry ice cream and no way that won't result in eliminating some flavors that you might like (eg. peppermint) so of course no suggestion of the SDOSIC is perfect. The SDOSIC will continue to suggest ways to enjoy ice cream, the "complainers" will continue to ask for ways that work better.

 

The real name calling is not in the ice cream debate. Its in the debate over whether you can claim to have eaten the ice cream in your online log if you didn't use a spoon. The "puritans" insist that you must use a spoon to eat ice cream and the people who don't use spoons are "cheaters". ;)

Edited by tozainamboku
Link to comment

I think the OP makes a valid statement. I used to play in this sandbox a lot more than I do now. Far too often I start reading a thread, hoping to get a glimmer of new insight, or to offer the OP some of my own. Then as I scroll down I spot the same 6-10 avatars who have derailed the thread into a discussion of wingnuts, just for their own amusement. I close the thread and move on, sadder than I was when I started reading.

 

And just for clarification-I like wingnuts. They work very well when that type of fastener is needed or appropriate. And I enjoy many flavors of ice cream, but only order strawberry at this one place that has a strawberry patch out back and makes it fresh onsite. :D

Edited by wimseyguy
Link to comment

First off, some of you may have noticed a lack of KBI's presence in the thread. He's away from the internet for work related reasons. Hopefully he'll pop in when he returns. :D

 

There have been some excellent points made so far! A few things that struck me below:

 

I don't mind bias. We all have our bias feelings...
Absolutely! We all have and need biases. I personally find that I am biased against anything that will hurt or kill me. I have more, but that big one covers quite a bit...
After reading this post, it struck me that most of the language showed that the author held a strong bias toward the groups in question. Even the titles of "Defenders" and "Complainers" are polarizing.
Interesting point. Until you realize that it wasn't the "Defenders" that gave themselves a name that would sound heroic, it was one of the "Complainers" that came up with the name Staunch Defenders Of Everything Lame as an insult to the group that didn't want to complain about caches.

 

And now that title is being pointed out as something the "Defenders" are doing to polarize the discussions.

 

:D:o;);););):D:D;):D:D:D

 

That cracks me up.

Interesting point, until you realize that regardless of the origins of the name, it is still a polarizing label.

 

My nickname in high school was "Junky." I'm sure that the casual observer could simply sit back and listen to how different people said it and know if that person was a friend of mine or not. Eventually, I noticed the difference. Because of the way certain people said it, I asked my friends to stop calling me that, as it kind of bugged me. Despite the fact that my best friend gave me the name and it was actually taken from my last name, the name became a stigma. So, as I said above, regardless of the origins of the name, it is still a polarizing label. Oh, this was when I first became "Too Tall" as I was the tallest person (not student) in the school.

"Wingnuts" is the wrong analogy. The proper analog is "ice cream" :D
Well, it wasn't really meant as an analogy for anything, as I'm trying to keep [the thing the ice cream is analogous with] out of it. :D

 

Nice job everyone. So far, for the most part, the only angst that has popped up is angst over angst. :D

Link to comment
I think the OP makes a valid statement. I used to play in this sandbox a lot more than I do now. Far too often I start reading a thread, hoping to get a glimmer of new insight, or to offer the OP some of my own. Then as I scroll down I spot the same 6-10 avatars who have derailed the thread into a discussion of wingnuts, just for their own amusement. I close the thread and move on, sadder than I was when I started reading.
I've tried to offer many ideas as well but those threads always turn into mosh pits. So I'm done dancing at those places. :D
Link to comment

First off, some of you may have noticed a lack of KBI's presence in the thread. He's away from the internet for work related reasons. Hopefully he'll pop in when he returns. :D

 

There have been some excellent points made so far! A few things that struck me below:

<snip>

 

That cracks me up.

Interesting point, until you realize that regardless of the origins of the name, it is still a polarizing label.

 

<snip>

I try to stay out of the "thick" of the discussions, but one time, when someone used the term "standards" as their reason for using "wingnuts" instead of regular nuts, I had to jump in. "Standards" was a polarizing word, in my opinion. I suggested the word should simply be "choices."

 

It isn't my "standards" that make me prefer "wingnuts" over regular nuts. It is simply a choice. ;) Sometimes I find I don't like to use "wingnuts," but other times, I have no problem with them at all and I'll choose to use them with no conflict with my "standards" or morality . . . :D

 

 

Edit for clarity . .

Edited by Miragee
Link to comment

- Most participants are not seeking to persuade, but to sting their debate opponents.

 

- If you enter a discussion unaligned with the existing factions, you will be assigned a faction, usually the one you wouldn't have picked for yourself.

 

- Once you've been assigned a faction, you own all of their opinions, including extreme and ridiculous ones invented by their opponents.

 

- Introducing a fact into a forum debate is like tossing your GPS into a fish pond. The inhabitants may cluster around it in wonder, ignore it, or attempt to eat it. They will not use it for any purpose for which it is suited, however.

Link to comment

First off, some of you may have noticed a lack of KBI's presence in the thread. He's away from the internet for work related reasons. Hopefully he'll pop in when he returns. ;)

KBI now returns from flinging his customers ‘round the sky ... to ‘pop’ as invited:

 

This thread is the result of a series of PMs between myself & KBI that stemmed from a recent thread. The following 2 posts are from that thread. I have taken the liberty to remove the actual topic being discussed and replaced it with "wing nuts," as the topic is full of angst and completely irrelevant to this thread. The fact that it is irrelevant should be kept in mind as you post here, as any discussion of anything other than bias, perspective and wing nuts will be considered off topic.
<snipped for brevity>

After reading this post, it struck me that most of the language showed that the author held a strong bias toward the groups in question. Even the titles of "Defenders" and "Complainers" are polarizing. Who would want to be a complainer when you could be a defender? Would you rather "challenge" or "make irrelevant noise"? It occurred to me that those depicted as "Complainers" might feel differently. I decided, in order to expose the biases & prejudices I'd take a stab at turning the post into one that a Wing Nut Hater may have made:

<snipped for brevity>
Interesting how a matter of perspective can change things around.

From the mods' perspective, here's the latest topic in their section of the forums:

Rehashing Angsty Topics: Why do they keep posting new topics after we close the old ones?

The fact is, in an argument between wing nut lovers and wing nut haters, the truth probably lies somewhere in between both camps. Unfortunately, when broad, sweeping generalizations start to be made about one of the groups, that group is a lot more likely to stop listening to the other unreasonable (in their view) people and their opinions. This leads to that old familiar circular rut that goes round and round and round 'til it gets shut down.

 

KBI and I have had a pretty great discussion about this, we agree on some points, but don't on others. I figured that since we were talking about perspectives, we should get someone else's views, so...

 

What do you think? :D

[NOTE: Too Tall John obtained my agreement before starting this thread, and has done so with my full blessing and permission. He and I enjoyed a very productive debate via the PMs on the subjects of factuality, bias and perspective, and the definition of debate itself.]

 

While we’re discussing bias and perspectives, TTJ, let me point out that you have biased your original post in this thread via the fallacy of omission: You left out a key point, a point which was my very reason for PMing you in the first place.

 

My primary objection to your reverse-worded post is that it effectively accused me of doing some bad things for which I am not guilty. Further, it was done in a thread in which I was not able to defend myself against those charges without risking angering the Mods by ‘dragging the thread off topic.’ You and I both got a warning, and rightly so; I think we were lucky that that’s all we got.

 

I asked you to prove that the refuse-to-debate and other accusations made against me in your reverse-worded post were true. You were unable to do so. Unfortunately your post still stands, as the edit period has now expired.

 

Also, while we’re discussing bias and perspectives, you implied another common-yet-mistaken conclusion with this statement:

 

The fact is, in an argument between wing nut lovers and wing nut haters, the truth probably lies somewhere in between both camps.

“Wing nut lovers?” Is that supposed to be me?

 

If so, please direct me to any post where I have implied that I either prefer or promote the thing which we are euphemizing here as ‘wing nuts.’ I have done my best to make it clear that while I defend the existence of wing nuts, I certainly don’t promote them. Your statement, via the use of the term “wing nut lovers,” frames the issue in a way that, while it has emotional appeal to those who oppose my position, is simply not accurate.

 

You’re not the first one to do this. It is a common fallacy. I posted a challenge several weeks ago asking the people who keep repeating this invalid claim to either (1) prove that it is true, or (2) stop making the claim. As usual, nobody responded – yet the claim keeps surfacing.

 

 

Even the titles of "Defenders" and "Complainers" are polarizing. Who would want to be a complainer when you could be a defender?

Interesting that you should choose to criticize that point.

 

I have been referring to those despisers-of-wingnuts as “Complainers” for quite some time now, and none of them has objected; probably because the title is factually accurate, just like the name they hung on me: “Defender.” The name Defender is short for “Staunch Defender of Everything Lame,” a title that was awarded to some of us, I believe, in the hopes that we would be offended, and that the phrase might somehow shame us into renouncing our ‘outrageous’ claim that a preference for wingnuts is just as valid as a preference for any other type of hardware. I didn’t choose the term “Defender” – it was chosen for me – but I proudly accept it as being accurate.

Link to comment
One of my favorite quotes is by Albert Guinon, "There are people who, instead of listening to what is being said to them, are already listening to what they are going to say themselves."

This is insightful. The problem as I see it is that your quote doesn't apply to these so-called "debates." In order for there to be a debate, each side must continue to attempt to convince the other. The anti-wingnut crowd has for some time now refused to defend its statements and arguments, choosing instead to simply repeat its questionable claims over and over.

 

I would be thrilled to “listen to what is being said to me,” as you seem to imply I’m not doing, if only what was being said to me was something – ANYTHING – in response to my questions and challenges.

 

What I keep hoping for is an actual two-way conversation – a rational debate.

 

In the most recent threads I have made several attempts to get these folks to engage. I have provided regular opportunities for them – or anyone else, for that matter – to convince me to agree with their basic anti-wingnut concepts. I post challenges; I ask questions; I write rebuttals. Pretty much all I get is silence. Or people calling me names. Or people posting pictures from Star Wars. Anything but respond to the debate. It’s almost tempting to claim a ‘win,’ when one’s ‘opponents’ lose by default, but winning is not my goal. My goal is to see if there is any way at all for all of us to agree. If my debate opponent disagrees with me on a fundamental and identifiable point, then AT LEAST one of us is wrong. If I’m wrong, please convince me that I’m wrong! I don’t want to continue being wrong – I want to be correct!

 

My request to those who tell me I am full of it with my defense of wingnuts is to CONVINCE me that I’m full of it. When I ask questions which are designed to clarify their points or to reveal what I believe are inconsistencies in their thinking, however, I get nothing – no convincing, no rebuttals, and no answers to my questions.

 

One poster implied that I was a troll for daring to state my position, claiming there is no way I could actually believe the things I say. I asked for an apology, and got nothing. In the past this person has actually claimed that I was going to Hell because I was unable to accept his anti-wingnut arguments. This is rational debate?

 

Another poster began to try to convince me, but answered my long and carefully thought out response to his argument – complete with specific conclusions, points and questions – with silence. When I asked why no response, he said “because there was nothing there worth responding to.” This is rational debate?

 

Another poster repeats his anti-wingnut opinions every chance he gets, but then claims not to have expressed those opinions when challenged, choosing instead to make irrelevant statements and to post images from Star Wars. I ask this fellow very specific questions designed to clarify his position. He refuses to answer. This is rational debate?

 

Another poster pops in, once per thread, to make completely illogical statements that are designed to have a purely emotional appeal. I and others respond to his statements with questions, rebuttals, etc. He never shows up again – until the next thread, where he ignores the previous responses and repeats his non-tactic. This is rational debate?

 

I have recently resorted to making statements which conclude that these anti-wingnut folks have absolutely no interest in defending their whining; they simply want to whine about the existence of wingnuts (and those whose hardware preferences happen to be different) without being bothered by challenges to the validity of their whining. To date not a single one of the habitual Complainers has contradicted that conclusion. That’s fine; if that’s their position, if they simply want to whine publicly and repeatedly without defending their whining, then other than pointing out the irrationality of it all, what else can I do?

 

Maybe I should do the same! Maybe I should start a campaign (in the Off Topic Forum, of course) of griping that too many people choose the color white when buying a new car, and that white isn’t really a color, and that the huge number of white cars is damaging to our very culture, and and that it’s too difficult for me to simply look at another car or enjoy those white cars for something other than their color, and by implication suggest that my car color preferences are more valid than the car color preferences of the people who are actually buying and driving the white cars, and pine for the good old days of the 1920s when motoring was still new and the only available color was black. Then if anyone dares to question any of those statements I’ll accuse THEM of being intolerant – or maybe I'll just ignore them completely, and resume my whining.

Link to comment
Perhaps it starts with disagreement on a fundamental premise. This prevents common ground on the overt argument, which continues until both sides have vested their pride in "winning" the arguement, whereby seeing the other side is tantamount to losing a battle.

As I have stated many times: If I were to lose such a debate, I would ultimately consider that to be a a 'win' for me. A VERY VALUABLE win. If my thinking is flawed, I would much rather be convincingly corrected than to continue thinking illogicaly.

 

It is not a contest. I do not ask my debate opponents to concede; I ask them to convince me that they are right and that I am therefore wrong.

 

Ironically, it was KBI who finally convinced me to walk away from debate after only a few exchanges; specifically, I learned from other people's mistakes in engaging KBI for too long.

If your point is that I sometimes babble way too much, then I agree with you 100%. :D

 

If, on the other hand, your point is that you ran out of counter-reasoning or could no longer find flaws or contradictions in my thinking, then what does that say about the soundness of your own opposing position?

Link to comment
Interesting point, until you realize that regardless of the origins of the name, it is still a polarizing label.

My whole point was that someone decided to insult a group of us on one side of the debate with the name. When it didn't really bother any of us, and some called themselves by that name, they're accused of using a polarizing label.

 

Your story didn't really apply. Let's say that if your nickname was given to you as an insult first, and the people that didn't like you attempted to insult you by calling you Junky, you may not have minded. You might have asked your friends to call you Junky too if you thought it fit in some way. In which case, what would you say to the people who were using it as an insult if they then suggested by referring to yourself as Junky you were trying to get away with something sneaky?

 

It totally matters what the origins of the name are because your post suggests that KBI called himself a Defender to make himself sound more noble.

 

So the other side should call him names until they find one he actually objects to, and then he's allowed to use that name to avoid "polarizing" the debate? He gets called a "Defender" by the other side, but he's doing something wrong when he calls them "Complainers"?

 

I totally agree that name calling is immature, and results from discussing the topic emotionally instead of logically. But if you're going to call someone on it, do it evenly. Don't be biased. :D

Link to comment
These types of posts offer hours of amusement. It's been my experience that someone will post an opinion, then one of the Wing Nut Defenders, recognizing that they really can't argue against an opinion, ...

As I have said many times, it's not mere opinions that I object to. As you rightly point out, that wouldn't make any sense.

 

If you prefer hardware other than wingnuts, then I actually SHARE your opinion.

 

It's when certain folks claim (or clearly infer) that their opinion is somehow better than, or more valid than, another peron's opinion that I question their logic. The preferences of those who enjoy the 'wingnuts' are just as valid as those who prefer to avoid the 'wingnuts.' THAT is the statement I keep making. THAT is the statement that seems to deeply trouble those who incorrectly claim that they're merely expressing an anti-wingnut opinion. THAT is the essence of my "defense."

 

... and having too low a self esteem to simply offer a counter opinion, will label that person as a Wing Nut Hater, in an attempt to both vilify the person, and to continue the argument for the sake of the argument.

Having low self esteem? Being a troll?

 

Personal attacks, CR? Isn't enough to debate the subject on its academic merits? Must you get personal?

Link to comment
i too learnt fast that you had better know your subject well if you are going to take on KBI :D

You imply that I know what the hell I'm talking about. I have never been convinced of that. If I were, I wouldn't be here, would I? If I already know I'm right, why waste time with debate?

 

yes the terms used do show a bias towards one side. complainers does suggest a negative aspect where as it would be better to address them as wing nut preferers and alternative fastener preferers. even that show a slight bias.

the best would be each side being named wing nut and standard nut users.....

I have already decided that the next time the subject of "good caches" vs "lame caches" comes up, I'm going to start referring to them instead as "Classical caches" and "Post-Classical caches."

 

If nobody hears any hint of bias in those terms, that is. ;)

Link to comment
There are certain topics that tend to draw the same people stating the same things over and over. I have gotten to where I never open those threads. Seen it, read it, not interested in it, so no need to read it.

Thank you!

 

Why can't more people see this presumably obvious logic instead of calling for thread closures on the grounds of Dead Horse Beating or Too Much Bickering?

 

There are recurring debates in these threads for which I, too, have no interest or hold no opinion. I ignore those as well. It has never occurred to me to report those posts, or to call for closure of those threads.

Link to comment
- If you enter a discussion unaligned with the existing factions, you will be assigned a faction, usually the one you wouldn't have picked for yourself.

I have found myself guilty of doing this to others, and was not proud of having done so. I have happily conceded the point and admitted my guilt when the mistake has been pointed out to me.

Link to comment
What makes me leave quickly is when debate becomes more about "how" & "why" we debate and less about the subject at hand.

But isn't that the whole point of THIS thread? ;)

And Now I'm outta here........ :D

Your choice, but I think you missed my point.

 

This thread, by its very nature, is about "how" & "why" we debate, as you put it, and not about any other specific subject. I just thought it curious that you felt the need to criticize the topic first before leaving.

Link to comment

I think KBI has changed the topic, which might not be bad. Too Tall John seemed to be asking if the labels we use in the debates on the forum indicate a bias and if they force each side to be further entrench so that a real dialog doesn't take place. Labels, by their very nature, are biased simply because they are used as short hand. So they don't entirely reflect the whole of the either sides argument. They are also used to lump people into one side or the other.

 

KBI seems to be stating that whether we use the labels or not there already a lack of dialog here. Although he seems to lay the blame on the other side, I think it is really true of both sides in this debate. I tend to agree with KBI that when he and others offer suggestions on ways to avoid wingnuts and the other side simply finds ways to discount his methods. On the other hand, I think KBI and others seem to downplay the concerns of the other side. One thing is that many actually like wingnuts, but only if used in a situation where a wingnut is "appropriate". They feel that there are too many places where a wingnut is used inappropriately. KBI and others don't help these people in finding approriately used wingnuts. Also sometimes the so-called complainers want to discuss when it is appropriate to use a wingnut. KBI stock response is that a wingnut can be used whenever a person wants to. But the other side would like to discuss whether this it true or whether there are really times when a different nut should be used (or perhaps where you shouldn't have a nut at all). Perhaps sometimes the problem is that the two sides are discussing two different issues. One side thinks the discussion is "how to avoid wingnuts" while the other sides thinks the discussion is "when should you use a wingnut" or "are too many wingnuts bad for geocaching".

Link to comment
This thread, by its very nature, is about "how" & "why" we debate, as you put it, and not about any other specific subject.

This sort of illustrates my point. Toz's post does too. Someone needs to convince me what this has to do about geocaching pretty quickly. I am about to go to lunch and might just bring a fork back with me. :D

Link to comment

The funny thing about these discussions, that go on and on and on, and polarize a few people against another few people, is that in the outside world, away from the Forums, people are placing Wingnuts. Some in good places, some in bad places. Not only that, some of the Wingnuts in good places are actually inadequate, poor-quality Wingnuts, while some Wingnuts placed in terrible places are actually very high-quality Wingnuts . . .

 

And, as the discussion goes on, and on, and on, so does this other activity we can do very little, or nothing, about. ;)

 

But, we are entertained . . . or not . . . :D

Link to comment
This thread, by its very nature, is about "how" & "why" we debate, as you put it, and not about any other specific subject.

This sort of illustrates my point. Toz's post does too. Someone needs to convince me what this has to do about geocaching pretty quickly. I am about to go to lunch and might just bring a fork back with me. :D

The thread has nothing to due with geocaching but it might have to due with forum etiquette and how we should behave in discussing controversial re-occuring topics (so they don't get locked ;)). If it is just about the general nature of debate or even about the general nature of debate in internet forums it probably doesn't belong here. The use of wingnuts and strawberry ice cream doesn't hide the fact that every one knows what these really refer to. So I think this is on topic but probably the mods need to keep a close eye on it in case it drifts too much.

Edited by tozainamboku
Link to comment

 

<snipped for briefity>

The fact is, in an argument between wing nut lovers and wing nut haters, the truth probably lies somewhere in between both camps.

 

<snipped for brevity>

That's what I've been saying for a long time and usually get boo'ed down or ignored. The extremist are usually wrong no matter what side of the argument they are on.

Link to comment
KBI seems to be stating that whether we use the labels or not there already a lack of dialog here. Although he seems to lay the blame on the other side, I think it is really true of both sides in this debate. I tend to agree with KBI that when he and others offer suggestions on ways to avoid wingnuts and the other side simply finds ways to discount his methods. On the other hand, I think KBI and others seem to downplay the concerns of the other side.

When the 'concerns' of the other side address issues of practicality, I tend to agree. Clan Riffster, for example, does an excellent job of pointing out the practical inadequacy of plastic film canisters for use as Post-Classical caches. He has convinced me to agree with him. :D

 

When the 'concerns' of the other side address issues of asthetic preference, on the other hand, I tend to disagree, sometimes strongly. When a cacher complains about another cacher exercising a different aesthetic preference, and does so in a way as to imply that their own preference is somehow superior, I see that as nothing less than geo-bigotry.

 

One thing is that many actually like wingnuts, but only if used in a situation where a wingnut is "appropriate". They feel that there are too many places where a wingnut is used inappropriately.

To suggest that one cacher's aesthetic preference is somehow more "appropriate" than another's is self-centered and rude. All benign methods and preferences of game play are equally valid, and should be allowed to peacefully co-exist.

Link to comment
One thing is that many actually like wingnuts, but only if used in a situation where a wingnut is "appropriate". They feel that there are too many places where a wingnut is used inappropriately.

To suggest that one cacher's aesthetic preference is somehow more "appropriate" than another's is self-centered and rude. All benign methods and preferences of game play are equally valid, and should be allowed to peacefully co-exist.

The problem is that it is slightly more nuanced. Several of the complainers are willing to let the people who enjoy wingnuts to continue to do so, but they ask those who use wingnuts to consider others. Use the wingnut on an historic bolt or one that is scenic instead of on a dumpster. Sometimes it seems that people use wingnuts without thinking if other people might enjoy a wingnut here. If they used a different kind of nut or if they used the wingnut in a different place more people might like it. I agree that people are infering that their asthetic preferences are those of 'most' people without any hard evidence of this. But I don't think this is being self-centered or rude. It is human nature for people to think that their preferences are the norm and other asthetic preferences are unusual.

Edited by tozainamboku
Link to comment

Simply put, there is a handful of people who like to argue debate for the sake of arguing debating.

 

It happens over and over. That's why I now spend way more time in the OT arena than here.

 

What really gets me is when 2 particular people go at it over and over. There is one person that if he posts in a topic, another well known poster will immediately jump all over him just for the sake of jumping on him.

 

I can't say I agree with the jumpee's opions, but I hate seeing him being jumped on even worse.

 

If you have a valid opinion you would like to express on a topic, then do so. Then attempt to actually take time to listen to the other side.

 

9 times out of 10, there is no listening going on. I think several people here would do better to lurk more and post less.

 

That's just my .02!

Link to comment
It isn't my "standards" that make me prefer "wingnuts" over regular nuts. It is simply a choice. ;) Sometimes I find I don't like to use "wingnuts," but other times, I have no problem with them at all and I'll choose to use them with no conflict with my "standards" or morality . . . :D
If I had the time, I might start a "List of Phrases to Use and to Avoid." Standards vs. Choice would now make that list.
Link to comment
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
×
×
  • Create New...