Defining trolling

Discussion in 'Site Feedback' started by Magical Realist, Mar 16, 2015.

  1. Kittamaru Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Adieu, Sciforums. Valued Senior Member

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    While I may be "certain" of how I remember it happening, I know that memory degrades over the years after an event, especially one that occurs during a high-stress situation
     
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  3. cluelusshusbund + Public Dilemma + Valued Senior Member

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    An you'r gut feelin now... do you realy thank a spirit lady helped you find you'r way.???
     
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  5. Kittamaru Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Adieu, Sciforums. Valued Senior Member

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    As I said - my feeling now is that I don't know what happened. It could have been the spirit of Rachel Hartman... it could have been a camp counselor that I did not know (there were several different camps going at the same time) and I simply incorrectly remember the appearance... it could have been a hallucination brought on by the fear of being lost, or even a waking dream, started by a tired mind.

    I honestly don't know what to make of it.
     
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  7. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    It's one of the things about our discourse here. I can actually offer you a very mundane explanation for the phenomenon you experienced in the woods, and when I say it's all in your head, I just mean that's where this weird phenomenon takes place.

    Start with a joke from Gilligan's Island, about the "three of us": I, me, and myself.

    And then move on to laughter. A weird thing happens when people laugh, because it turns out laughter is a sympathetic behavior. The weird thing is that we are so determined, as a basic brain function, to "share the laughter", that we will, when alone, invent a second person in our heads to share the joke with.

    Now, we know this about laughter, though it's not quite as clear how this works with other emotions. Still, though, consider the arguments that would describe the creative centers of the human brain as evidence for the existence of God. That is, we have a creative center that lights up in nearly perfect coincidence with religious sentiment; the theistic argument goes that this is how our brains are attuned to receive and interact with God. But at the same time, all we can really say definitively is that this function has not evolved out of our brains; we have use, as a species, for creativity, and circumstance does not demand the elimination of this sort of creativity.

    Now add in that internally-created second person. God, ghosts, all of it. Right there. Taking place inside your brain. This is the most likely explanation.

    The paranormal entities we experience are better explained as produce of the human mind and brain doing what they do than as undemonstrable phenomena really taking place in the world.

    Beyond that, the psychology gets a little sticky; fear-stricken, your mind isolates that second voice so that you can interact with it, and the part of you that operates beyond the fear itself guides you. Your brain will protect you, to the end of everything, and it seems insufficient to simply say, "Of course it will, as it has vested interest." What is really striking in that context is how creative it can be in promoting and protecting that interest.

    And in this outlook, it's not a matter of delusion or other mental illness. Rather, it is your brain doing exactly what it must the best way it can figure out, dissociating the secondary voice to operate outside the immediate primary experience; brain protects mind, which in turn is paralyzed in a fearful fog.

    Of course, the functional problem with this outlook is its implications, because such a circumstance would also suggest that much of what we consider mental illness in our society is actually constructed and driven by the society. It is easy enough to see behaviorally; proof of such a dynamic matrix with so many variables in the formula will be exceptionally difficult. The species and its subsequent heritage can last until the end of the Universe, exploring every nook and cranny we can find, but in the end the final frontier will be the question of what makes us human.
     
  8. Kittamaru Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Adieu, Sciforums. Valued Senior Member

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    Indeed - the mind will go to great lengths to protect itself... perhaps the most stunning of which include such things as the amnestic fugue / fugue state
     
  9. cluelusshusbund + Public Dilemma + Valued Senior Member

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    I agree... the Gost lady might have been real.!!!

    Yes... interestin stuff... but even wit all that ratiolization you'r beliefs still persist... an im glad you had the opportunity to disucss 'em here at Sciforums wit-out bein harassed/called a Troll.!!!
     
  10. Kittamaru Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Adieu, Sciforums. Valued Senior Member

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    http://www.iflscience.com/health-and-medicine/measles-denier-made-pay

    Boom. Science!

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

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    In response to the opening post:

    Here's an extract from our site rules. It pays to read the rules at least once.
    Questions arise as to what is a "normal on-topic discussion", what is an "irrelevant hot-button issue", what kinds of posts are likely to "incite controversy or conflict" or "cause annoyance or offence" and so on, as these questions pertain explicitly to sciforums.

    It is worth bearing in mind that sciforums is, first and foremost, a science forum. On the other hand, we also provide a platform in which "Fringe" beliefs can be exposed to scientific scutiny and skepticism. This is one reason why we have the Fringe sections. You'll find lots of sites on the internet where every paranormal belief under the sun is accepted with open arms and very little questioning. You'll find other sites where a whiff of woo will get you banned. We seek a middle ground, providing a forum in which "fringe" ideas can be subjected to more scientific rigour and analysis than you'll likely find on forums dedicated solely to those areas. We are not a cheer squad for "fringe" practitioners here. If you post an "alternative theory" or a fringe claim here, expect to be questioned closely on the strength of your argument and evidence.

    Since the question of what is trolling and who is a troll can be quite subjective, we tend not to officiate in regards to "trolls" except where there is a long or particular egregious record of troll-like posting behaviour.

    "Flaming" another poster is an offence that is quite separate from trolling. That is more in the ball park of personal insults.
     
  12. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    It's one thing to make an innocent mistake and post some ridiculous falsehood about science because you don't know any better. It's a different thing to continue to post ridiculous nonsense after the facts have been carefully and fully explained to you. This is a continuum. At some point we cross from ignorance to trolling.

    It can be. It's often hard to tell the difference between honest blinding stupidity and malicious intent. That's why we try to be careful about slapping somebody with the "troll" label too early.

    Science is a method that can be part of a value system. We could make a utilitarian argument about why one should value reason over superstition, for example. The argument goes something like: "science works, superstition doesn't". But you could be a person who doesn't care what works best in the real world, preferring to believe in fantasies instead. In that case, your value system may well be unscientific.

    Ideally, I'd like to see ideas supported with appropriate evidence and/or argument in all subforums, especially where they may be in dispute. Do you not think that's a worthy goal to aim for? Otherwise, how are we expected to find out what is true and what is not? Base all our judgments on personal trust, or something like that?

    Correct. Trolling requires more than just that.
     
  13. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    The sad thing to me is that part of that is how we invest ourselves in various ideas and, such as it is, "values".

    There is a certain part of us that revels in schadenfreude, for instance. And we feel a little less badly about it if we have some justification through the idea of "poetic justice". Still, though, I'm an American, and have you seen what we've done to the word "karma"? I'm not certain what it means, anymore, except that it has something to do with the idea of vengeance by natural circumstance.

    There's a reason John Lennon wrote that song.

    And there's a reason why I prefer the Threefold Law; that one, at least, I can explain in nearly objective terms. Of course, that only leads back to utilitarian morality, which in turn necessarily considers the whole species.

    So it would seem there is a reason why some people prefer a smaller "values" system.
     
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  14. Dr_Toad It's green! Valued Senior Member

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    It's worth reposting the lyrics:

     
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