Is SciFo a science forum?

Discussion in 'Site Feedback' started by DaveC426913, Oct 8, 2017.

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

    Well, let's review, shall we?

    timojin has had 19 warnings since he has been here. He currently has 40 active warning points. In the past year, the warnings he has received have mostly been given by Bells and Kittamaru, including following up on his behaviour following prior warnings. In other words, timojin has been given due attention by moderators.

    river has had 31 warnings since he has been here, but only 3 warnings this year. Most of his warnings have been for posting pseudoscience to the science sections, mostly issued by rpenner. river has recently been pinged for trolling by Kittamaru.

    Jan Ardena has had 3 warnings since he has been here. The most recent was in June 2014. All of his warnings were issued by moderators who are not currently active on the forums.

    Magical Realist has had 41 warnings, and currently has 70 active warning points. This year he has had 10 warnings. I gave him one warning for evangelising. All the others have been issued by Bells or Kittamaru for repeated intellectual dishonest of magnitude sufficient to amount to trolling, as well as for flaming other members of the forum.

    You have accused me of silencing or - god forbid! - questioning Jan and MR. As to the "silencing", Jan can hardly be said to be "silenced". Right now he a regular participant in a thread in the Religion forum, practically the centre of attention, in fact. As for "questioning", I make no apologies. It is as much my right as any other members to question the views and information posted by any member here.

    Regarding the "silencing" of MR, I point out that, left to his own devices, MR is a drive-by poster of pseudoscience. The pseudoscience is not, in itself, the problem. The drive-by evangelising, on the other hand, is. But the main problem with MR is that he refuses to support any claim he makes with evidence, and in fact is antagonistic towards other members who ask for evidence or justification from him. A number of MR's warnings have come from blatant dishonesty in the face of information presented directly to him. His "silencing", such as it has been, has been brought on entirely by his own actions. However, given the enormous amount he has posted to the forums in the past year, it is somewhat rich to suggest that his voice has not been allowed to be heard here.

    Regarding river and timjoin: Your view is that they are "trolling all day long". But trolling is a rather subjective thing. Sometimes it is clear enough - as the instances where MR was warned for trolling - but on other occasions simple ignorance and/or stupidity can look like trolling. At sciforums, we generally give people the benefit of the doubt. You might complain that we are too lenient. If so, you won't be the first to have that complain.

    I can guarantee that moderators review every report that is posted - and often more than one moderator. We will act on clear breaches of our site posting guidelines, but we will not necessarily support your personal vendettas, if you have them, against other members. We strive for fairness.

    We have some experience of vindictive reporters, and of reporters who try to use the report function as a tool in their personal battles with other members. My advice is that if you find a lot of your reports being rejected by the moderators, then you ought to go back and read the site rules to work out why your reports cannot be or are not being actioned. You can also request feedback in the Site Feedback forum, if necessary. That is what it is there for.

    Every time I come here I deal with many reports. I regularly move threads out of the Science sections to pseudoscience or other Fringe forums where appropriate, and occasionally to the cesspool. We have reasonably high standards for the Science forums.

    Did you report it?

    You wouldn't be referring to a new member who does seem to have some mental health issues, would you?

    Your feedback is noted.

    I am no supporter of pseudoscience. That should be clear from my posts.
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  3. Seattle Valued Senior Member

    The interesting aspect of this whole problem to me is that everyone knows who the most troll like members are (or those who just try to disrupt) and as you mention, they have been warned many, many times.

    Yet, they are still here? On what other forum could someone be warned 40 times and still be on that forum?

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    What is the point of a warning. When you get to a 1,000 you get banned for a day?

    It's just a strange system is my point I guess.

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  5. Randwolf Ignorance killed the cat Valued Senior Member

    I agree Kit. But, if anyone was to say something like that I'm pretty sure timojin would be their poster boy. He's really been on a roll lately...

    However, I think honest ignorance and literal curmudgeonliness are at play. The only question is how long will his luck hold out.

    After all, he's not only a racist but a sexist as well - there is quite the purge occurring here in the states for the latter, maybe he will get caught up in the net...
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  7. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

    Yes, let's HONESTLY!!
    Obviously I was not commenting on any other mod...I said "and yet YOU chose to have let the likes of timojin and river troll all day long"
    I am not referring to anyone else.

    You are becoming a master at deception James. I said, "You seem to have a great knack and probably a bias over many months in quickly jumping in to silence or question Jan and MR at every opportunity. And certainly they deserve that rebuffing and debunking,"
    . I'm not criticising you for rebuffing them...Understand?

    Yes, obviously on most occasions the pair are trolling and many times when you are online, but presumably more interested in your pet hates...Jan and MR [NB: They do deserve your criticism James, understand?

    The moderation of one in particular is in line with the rules. Yours do not appear so, except of course when it suits you or depending on who is making the report.

    No I did not report it, but to me anyway, yeah the person in question has a problem, and note the person making the remark appears also to have a problem...mainly hypocrisy to the max...a fact he has taken to heart since I revealed it.
    Does that make the remark decent?

    You certainly are though an apparent supporter of one or two regular members and their sometimes petty reports. Note again James, I am referring to other mod just James.
  8. Kittamaru Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Adieu, Sciforums. Valued Senior Member

    Fair enough.

    Except it won't. It isn't terribly difficult to figure out how to play the system - take DMOE, for instance. He made it up to 70 points, and hasn't signed on in several months. I have no doubt in my mind that he will wait for the points to expire, then get right back to it. It's a pattern we have seen played out over and over, often by the same members.

    It's a discussion that has been asked for multiple times, but never really seems to go anywhere because it seems like nobody wants to actually have it. Or, rather, some want to have it, but fear being rebuffed.

    However, if you feel this discussion has been had, then I ask you - what, precisely, is our mission statement, our raison d'être as it were? Following that, what is our intent to cultivate that mission, and how do we wish to handle those that are here to disrupt said intent?

    And yes, I think this should be discussed in open forum, rather than behind closed doors, so that the entire community can be aware of the intent and know that it is a unified effort, rather than differing interpretations of the rules by different people.
    cluelusshusbund likes this.
  9. Kittamaru Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Adieu, Sciforums. Valued Senior Member

    timojin - he had 9 warnings, totalling 90 points, between January 11th and July 25th, in addition to untold verbal warnings. He had 8 warnings prior to that, 6 of which were in 2016. Almost all of them appear to be for the exact same thing - inappropriate behavior, namely attacks against others, be it racism, homophobia, or simple personal attacks. A handful are for posting strange perversions of science in the hard sciences section.

    river - 16 warnings in 2016 between March and December, totalling 126 points, and that's with three 0 point "warnings", three 5 point infractions, and a 1 point infraction. All of them appear to fall under the same issue - preaching pseudoscience in the hard science sections, ignoring of presented evidence in favor of re-iterating debunked points, and numerous posts of one-liners that contribute nothing to the thread at hand. (including at least one you simply labeled as "idiocy").

    MR - Hang onto your seats!

    2014 - 5 warnings between July and October for trolling and intellectual dishonesty. Mostly warnings (1 or zero points, one 5 point infraction).
    2015 - 17 warnings for trolling, intellectual dishonesty, personal attacks against those he disagrees with, etc totaling, if my math is correct, 255 points.
    2016 - 9 warnings for the same behavior as above, totaling 100 points, between March and November.
    2017 - 10 warnings for the same behavior as above, totaling 90 points (including a single zero point warning), between January and October

    Total count - 41 warnings totaling 450 infraction points.

    Now, keep in mind - that doesn't include anything from before the software change, when infractions and warnings didn't have points. It doesn't include the simply phenomenal number of verbal warnings he has been given - he's been around since 2011, so if we presume a similar style of behavior those three missing years, that would put him at nearly 600 infraction points... or six permanent bans.

    Jan - Jan seems to stick primarily to the Religion subforum, and primarily to two threads the last few months. Truth be told, I've all but given up moderating the Religion forum because we really don't have anything moderator worthy there; aside from egregious ad hominem attacks, the past few years have made it appear as though it is meant to be a free for all for all the "religious nutjobs" who are "stupid for believing this preposterous crap". We "have absolutely ZERO respect for religion in its various forms", as has been stated time and time again, as they are naught by a "collection of Bronze Age fairy tales".

    So... yeah, lets just get rid of the Religion sub-forum if we, as a website, find that "for a website devoted to science and scholarship to host a subforum on religion is no different from hosting one on leprechauns or feng shui."
    While we're at it, lets just condense all of the Fringe forums down to one sub-forum, and leave it as a holding pit for all the non-science. As has already been said, the way it is laid out now (and given that it seems the majority of our traffic is within them), we appear to be advertising a desire for non-science discussion.

    Now, all that to say -

    When is enough... well, enough? When do we consider any vestiges of "good faith" used up and simply accept that a member is being dishonest, rude, racist, sexist, or just an asshole... because obviously the system we have isn't working very well. Yes, we've managed to weed out a few seriously problematic members (such as Greatest I Am and The God) who made exactly zero attempt to hide or otherwise disguise their disruptive agendas... but the more intelligent trolls know just how easy it is to beat the system.
    cluelusshusbund likes this.
  10. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    He is on the verge of a ban. If he gets any more warnings, he will kick over the line into ban territory.
  11. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    Not too long ago, you walked out of sciforums in a huff, telling everybody how you'd found another forum that suited you better than this one. But now you're back, and you're slotting right back into the pattern of behaviour that eventually made you decide to leave in a huff last time. The way things are going, I don't expect the outcome this time to be much different. Do you?

    It looks to me like you enjoy latching onto one or a few people who you see as the enemy of your rather rigid view of what science ought to be. You then proceed to follow them around the forum, tell them they have an "agenda" to spread anti-science, telling them they are hypocritical and in other respects morally lacking. If one of your targets disappears, you latch onto somebody else.

    You don't take criticism well. You don't like anybody questioning your interpretation of scientific articles or news stories that you post. When they do, you assume they must be pursuing some kind of anti-science agenda, and you hammer away at them with ad hominem attacks.

    This is not how science is done. Science is built on the sharing of ideas, and the rigorous scrutiny of those ideas through processes of peer review. Science is not done by proclamation by some authority or other. It is not done by bullying people into submission. Your idea "wins" when it survives the critical scrutiny of others, not when you're successful in silencing them.

    Some people would argue that I choose to let the likes of you troll all day long, but I'm sure you'd disagree with that assessment.

    We have a set of guidelines in place that set approximate boundaries for moderation, as well as certain expectations we have of our membership. There are some who believe that our rule set is too lax. If so, we can have a conversation about that, which might lead to a vote by the membership or a decision by the moderator group to change the rules. If you think the rules are lacking, start a thread in Open Government and we can discuss that.

    Below the rule set, we have our moderator team. The moderators have considerable discretion to apply their own judgment when issues come up for moderation, subject to the general principles set out in our rules. Different individual moderators draw lines in different ways. Some have more tolerance for certain behaviours and less for others. Therefore, outcomes can vary somewhat depending on which moderator is handling a particular issue (which is often fairly random, since the report queue is handled in the order that reports come in, by whichever moderator happens to see the current action list at the time). When in doubt, or when there is a series of report, or when there is a contentious issue, moderations decisions are often discussed among the moderators before action is taken. In some cases, preliminary action is taken, pending a more thorough review by the wider mod team.

    We receive a lot of complaints about particular moderator decisions, taken in individual cases. Some posters feel compelled to whine every time they receive a warning, either privately to the moderator concerned or to admin, or in a public thread, or both. It is very rare (actually it almost never happens these days) for any official moderator action to be reversed. This is because, most of the time, the moderator group is well aware of any truly contentious matters and has decided on the appropriate action in group consultation. Having said that, the vast majority of moderator actions are expected and are par for the course; all the moderators are on board and it is obvious that the decision taken is appropriate (or at least not unreasonable) from the start.

    I don't know what you're talking about regarding deception.

    What did you mean by "silence or question", if you're now saying that questioning is not an issue?

    In your eyes it is obvious. Trolling is often very subjective. That is something I have learned over many years of moderating this forum.

    Whenever I log in here, here's the order that I typically do things:

    1. Check admin approvals of new members whose memberships are being premoderated (held up) for whatever reason, if any. Deal with those.
    2. Read all relevant posts from moderators in the Moderators subforum, regarding all current updates and discussions of all moderation issues.
    3. Review all open reports in the report queue.
    4. Handle easily-resolvable reported issues that no other moderator is taking the lead on.
    5. Try to resolve harder-to-handle reported issues, unless some other moderator is already taking the lead.
    6. Read, and respond if I feel I have something to add, to threads in the public forums regarding moderation and admin issues (e.g. Site Feedback threads).
    7. Read and respond to subscribed threads that I am participating in as a normal member (i.e. threads that I find interesting).
    8. Read new threads and respond if I'm interested.

    My "pet hates", as you put it, come second-last, or last, on this prioritised list.

    I should also add that I don't hate anybody on this forum. I dislike certain things about how Jan and MR go about making their arguments, such as they are, and I have been quite clear in my public posts about exactly where I see them as failing. I am as entitled to express my opinions on such things as any other member.

    You're saying you approve of one of our moderators? Well, that's a good start, I guess.

    I think you're just disgruntled because I don't automatically take your side or bow to your wishes on everything that you're involved in. I think you probably resent the fact that you don't have more power here than you do. I think that you think you deserve better. I could be wrong, of course.

    I think that you've just decided on a new person to target with your allegations of hypocrisy, agendas and the like. You've probably been searching around for a new target.

    It is not the most diplomatic thing to tell somebody they are deranged, even if they are. On the other hand, sometimes calling a spade a spade is fair comment; there's little point in pussy-footing around when something is fairly obvious to anybody reading the thread. I plead guilty to a similar lack of diplomacy in the same thread.

    Mental illness is difficult. It is an illness, not a moral fault. It is wrong to call somebody deranged when they clearly are not - to use it as a generic insult - because doing that is disrespectful to people who have a genuine issue, quite apart from the inappropriateness of the insult to the person receiving it. But when there are signs that somebody may have a real mental health issue, it can be kinder to direct them towards appropriate help than to ignore the matter and treat them as if they are a deliberate "troll".

    Lots of people file reports here. Often the most useful ones are filed by people who are merely reading a thread and who are not direct participants in the thread that they are reporting.

    It should come as no surprise that some people who file reports that are typically more reliable and useful to the moderators than the reports filed by certain other people.

    As a moderator, I am very grateful that certain members will take the time to draw my attention to issues in which they have little to no personal stake. They do it out of a care for the sciforums community and a desire to make sciforums better, I think. The moderators cannot possibly keep an eye on everything that happens here all the time, so it is great when people draw our attention to things that warrant it.

    We sometimes get "petty" reports. I try to deal with those appropriately. Speaking personally, I often reject such reports, or gently advise the reporter to deal with issue via a response in the relevant thread. Sometimes people report other posters because they feel offended by something that was said as part of a discussion or argument, but it turns out that whatever was said doesn't actually breach our posting guidelines. In such cases, the better course of action can often be for the reporting member simply to reply in refutation of the "offending" post in the thread. Many opinions are contestable but need not be the subject of moderator attention.
    Seattle likes this.
  12. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    I don't see this as a problem. If DMOE (or whoever) feels like he needs to leave for several months so that his accumulated warning points will expire, that's the system working as it should. The bad behaviour goes away for the months that the offending member is absent.

    As you will recall, last year we changed the "default" expiry time on warning points from 3 months to 6 months. That change has taken a while to work its way through the system, but I think it has reduced the capacity of certain trolls to simply wait it out and lay low for a time - or at least it has made the "wait" time considerably longer than it used to be. It has also meant that some problem posters are being banned when previously they might have had a warning rate just low enough never to reach the level of a significant or permanent ban.

    If the membership in general thinks that the expiry time is still too short, we could have a discussion about that and potentially lengthen it again. None of our rules or policies is absolute. They have changed in the past, and we can change them again if that is the will of the membership.

    If you want an open forum discussion, why not start a thread in Open Government and ask the membership:

    1. What do you see as sciforums' "mission statement" or main purpose?
    2. What, if any, changes would you like to see to help advance those aims?
  13. Kittamaru Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Adieu, Sciforums. Valued Senior Member

    Done and done:

    1) RE: Sub-Forums and Mission Statement
    2) RE: Warnings, Bans, and Rules
  14. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    Regarding the specific histories of the various members that have been singled out by paddoboy for discussion, I think it is important to bear in mind that the expiry time on warnings only increase in the second half of last year.

    Also, although some members have had a lot of warnings, in certain cases those have been over the space of years.

    To take the "worst" case of the members mentioned, MR has had a total of 10 warnings this year, which averages less than 1 warning per month. Now, we could look at that in one of two ways. One way to look at it is that MR's behaviour hasn't been considered so objectionable that moderators have been handing him warning after warning; whatever he has been doing it has fallen below the threshold that would get him permanently banned. The other way to look at it is that he has had 10 official warnings, but has been a consistent drain on moderator attention; the conclusion in that case might be that we, as a group, have been too lenient with him.

    My personal assessment of where MR is at is that the system is working about at the level I think it should work with him, now. He is currently sitting on 90 points - just one warning off a permanent ban, and with a 1 month temporary ban, following a total previous ban period approaching 2 months out of this year. This is what his behaviour has brought him: one-sixth of the year on an enforced absence from the forum, with the threat of being permanently absent with any futher infraction. He is at a crossroads now. He can change his ways, or he will leave. It's up to him. He isn't in any position to complain that he has been treated harshly.

    As for the rest, timojin is now 1 warning short of a temporary ban, with further warnings likely to accumulate unless he changes. Both he and river must surely have experienced time out from the forum by now.

    In my opinion, Jan Ardena doesn't fall into the same category as river, timojin or MR. A lot of people might view Jan's posting style as fundamentally dishonest in certain ways, and therefore troll-like. However, I have never thought that his posts met the threshold at which I, personally, would be handing him an official warning, even if I was not engaging him in discussions. Given that I often am engaging him in vigorous debates, I am very disinclined to act in any official capacity to deal with any troll-like behaviour I see from him. The appearance of bias would be far too great.

    This "zero respect for religion", "stupid", "preposterous crap" and so on sounds like the views of one moderator, in particular (not mentioning names, but I think you know who). Recently, Tiassa has taken sciforums atheists to task for their alleged insufficient knowledge of the religious ideas they are dismissing. Speaking for myself, I do not believe all religion is stupid, and I respect a number of religious leaders and other religious people whom I know. I do not agree with the "zero tolerance for religion" line being pushed by that one moderator, in particular. I think there is room in the world, and at sciforums, for different views on religion, and I think that discussion between religious people and non-religious people can be valuable, if for no other reason that for the one to better understand the other's point of view.

    Tiassa is right in this regard: we're not now, and never have been, solely devoted to science. And as of now, we actually do host a subforum on leprechauns (and other monsters), and we have room for feng shui in our Fringe forums, too.

    There was a time not so long ago when we did have just one "fringe" subforum, called Pseudoscience. The membership took a vote, and the consensus at that time was that they wanted a greatly expanded range of Fringe forums. So here we are.

    Nothing is unchangeable, however. If the mood has now changed and the membership wants to ditch some or all of the Fringe forums, and/or condense them, we can discuss that, with the view to putting it to a vote.
  15. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    I have a different view, which I have expressed before. I think that here we have a point of difference compared to other "science" forums. We invite fringe-dwellers to come here and discuss their ideas not only with members of their own communities of believers, but also with non-believers and skeptics, many of whom have some scientific training, an interest in clear thinking and rationality, and so on. Instead of staying in a self-congratulatory ghetto somewhere, believers in the Yeti or alien visitation or 911 conspiracies can see if/how well their ideas stand up to critical scrutiny. in the process, they might just learn something. And the skeptics here might learn other things.

    If you want hard physics with zero tolerance for pseudoscience, go to physicsforums. It's an excellent forum, full of trained scientists and mathematicians. If you want uncritical acceptance of your UFO belief, I'm sure there are plenty of forums that cater to that. But if you want to see both sides in the same place, you might consider coming here.

    That's your opinion, and I'm sure there are members who will heartily agree with you.

    I think that things aren't as bad as you think they are. To me, it seems like the system we have works okay, which is not to say that there's nothing that could be improved. In particular, I think that the extreme racist, sexist posters get dealt with very quickly. A certain amount of everyday sexism and racism rears its head here from time to time, and that reflects the world as it is outside. When things get too objectionable, they generally get hit on the head by one moderator or another. But at a certain level, I think it is better to at least attempt to educate the racists and sexists first, rather than simply tossing them back out into the wilds of the internet as they were. Nine times out of ten, nothing that is done here will change them, but if we have even a one in ten influence, that's surely a "win" in some sense. And we're not even counting the people who only read this forum and never post or even sign up.

    I have often said (in fact, I just said it to paddoboy, above), that I have grown wary of moderating people on the grounds of "trolling" or "lack of good faith" or "intellectual dishonesty". The reason is that these labels are so often thrown out there as accusations by people who are in heated disagreement with the particular views or opinions being expressed. It can be a kind of ad hominem attack that avoids having to actually address the content. I am not saying that these things are impossibly subjective; on the contrary, sometimes they are very clear. I'm saying that it's very easy to slip into ascribing dishonest intent or motives to a person when you disagree with their opinion or point of view.

    I'm not so sure anybody is beating the system. I mean, let's take a case where somebody is permanently banned, then they sign up under a new sock-puppet identity and we don't notice for a while. Have they beaten the system? Well, what do they do under the new sock? Option one is to continue the same behaviour that got them banned in the first place. If they do that, things tend to quickly catch up with them and they are re-banned. Option two is to tone things down with the "new" persona, to try to lay low and avoid moderator attention. And if that works, it means that the poster is now not meeting the required threshold to breach the site rules - in other words, the posters is now conforming to our site policies, even though he (it's mostly a "he") might consider his new apparent anonymity on the forum as some kind of personal victory.

    As for members who never quite meet the ban thresholds, are they beating the system? No. I'd say they are simply butting up against the established boundaries of the system. And that's to be expected. That's what decided to tolerate. We drew a line and inevitably some people will try to find out exactly where that line is. If we're not happy with where the line is drawn, we can re-draw it. It's not set in stone, though obviously we need a consensus on where any new line is going to be. But wherever the line is drawn, there will always be people who butt up against it, some who will occasionally cross it, and some who will continue crossing it until they are no longer permitted to remain here.
  16. Kittamaru Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Adieu, Sciforums. Valued Senior Member

    There is also the possibility (well, it isn't a possibility so much as an actuality for myself) that some have given up on moderating him entirely, since nothing seems to come of it.

    I see him at 70 points currently, fifty of which expire before the end of January, which will leave him free to begin again.

    Which is fine - but if others are seeing him as being dishonest, then why are there no (or few) reports? I think it highlights a problem - have we, as the Moderation team, lost the trust of the membership due to inaction?

    I provided those quotes as examples of things that have been said in the past - generally, I took it as a "shut up and sit down" kind of line, indicating the discussion was finished.

    And that is rather my question here. If we want to advertise and encourage that discussion, are we ready for the inevitable discourse that will result?

    I'm sorry, James... but lately, as near as I can tell, you aren't here frequently enough for the daily minutiae to be evident, and some of it is seemingly minor enough to slip under the radar of a cursory glance, in part because I think many folks have started giving up on the report function entirely.
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2017
  17. sweetpea Valued Senior Member

    Good idea Clueluss, but members being mods with the actual real power to move others??? Human nature being what it is, there will be a constant moving of sock puppets, using proxy servers to get around the weak point of Sciforums weakness on having to rely on IP address for proof of sock.
  18. exchemist Valued Senior Member

    Your discussion of Jan Ardena triggered me to comment. I have found his evasive approach to discussion very annoying for some time. I have also found river and MR extremely tiresome. But a year or two ago I decided to make liberal use of the Ignore facility. I simply no longer see the posts of perennially annoying posters, except when I have not yet logged on.

    The Ignore feature is a boon to readers, but one side effect is that you will get fewer reports on people who are widely ignored. I don't know how you deal with this. Conceivably you could look at how widely a poster is ignored, or something, but that might be rather a blunt instrument.
  19. cluelusshusbund + Public Dilemma + Valued Senior Member

    O yes… if Kitta needed help keepin people out that didnt belong in the science forums they woud have to be Mods.!!!

    An i thank thers enuff science minded people alredy here to make the science forums interestin to lurkers an draw them here to the scientific areas sinse they will clearly see that unscientific stuff is no longer allowed.!!!
  20. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

    Not sure that I walked out in a huff, but anyway not to worry. As this is a science forum,(I think) I will certainly to the best of my ability, reveal any aspect that I see as unjustly deriding science, for any reason including just some fanatical anti science agenda, including religious agenda or simply an excess of self gratuitous persona in anyone believing they can or will invalidate any aspect of science including GR, from the comfort of their lounge chair, on a public forum such as this.
    See previous comment. And to illustrate the deception I spoke of, Jan for example causes me no great concern at least from the few posts I have read of hers.She is a believer...her right...she does not, at least what I have sen go out of her way to denigrate any aspect of science...she posts her opinion and stuff in the religious section as it should be...Her obvious agenda, ( religion and the bible) does not affect me one way or the other, as long as she does not go out of her way to denigrate unfairly and illogically, any aspect of science. She obviously has a different effect on you, and yes, that is your right that has never been questions. But again, this is where the deception comes into play on your part. Your right to question her is not being questioned. Your apparent bias, (to me at least) in concentrating on her and ignoring others that are purposely going out of there way to rubbish science, is what I am questioning.
    Wrong. And I could very well say that about you also specifically with relation to what I see as deception with regards to what you claim I say and mean, to what I really say and mean.
    Forums such as this are open to all and sundry, particularly this one with its rather lax rules and interpretations, and of which others here have spoken of.
    In many cases, particularly from those with agendas, delusions of grandeur, religious bias, and the occasional closeted IDer, there interest is not in any aspect of peer review, ( this is not any reputable peer review assembly)but more to push their own line, particularly when articles are posted, that brings into question their own personal beliefs.
    Some people are also very miffed at being exposed as closeted IDers for example, and some people resent being taken to task when they amateurishly try and invalidate some aspect of science including GR. But hey James, if you believe I'm trolling by either exposing these people, or consistently engaging them when they are pushing anti science agendas, then the onus is on you to ban me. That's your choice.
    I made a return James because I saw some change. Since my return I have highlighted some hypocrisy by at least two otherwise decent members, who have seen the need to castigate me for taking on the real trolls, while they themselves have shown the same lack of decency or whatever you chose to call it, when the incessant nature of said trolls finally gets to them.
    I don't need to start a thread James. Obviously you see some discord in the place so I suggest it is your job to question and take on board any proposed rule changes or actions against those that chose to unjustly deride the science for which this forum was made for.

    By suggesting I said or meant something that I did not say or mean.
    Silence may have been the wrong word. Question, the meaning is obvious, and your right to question and/or ignore whoever you chose, based on whatever standards you hold. My questioning of your methodology, was simply the perception you have given in applying that question to particular members while apparently letting others continue.

    This is a science forum, is it not? I believe it is obvious as to what trolling is.
    If I walked into church next Sunday, and started "preaching"re a Universe from nothing, and loudly denigrating the bible, I would suggest I would then be trolling.
    Yes, and that moderator despite being a believer, has conducted himself and administered his rulings etc, on the basis that this is a science forum...and by the way, that same moderator has also sen the need to give me a couple of warnings and infringement tickets.
    Yep, you are wrong James. Again, If you believe I'm a troll, and if you believe that I unjustly deserve to be spoken to for claiming someone is gullible, when you yourself have been guilty of that extraordinary crime, then you need to ban me James.

    What new person have I targeted James? Perhaps the otherwise hypocritical member who has in the past castigated me for engaging the real trolls, while he when they get to him, does the same thing, and as I have shown you. That member in actual fact has now chose to target me. I'm simply giving back what he likes to administer to me.

    Yet you chose to warn me about calling another gullible, or as this fictional new member I am targeting took exception to, being told he had an agenda? Which as I have informed you was not directed at him anyway. Double standards James?
    I did not see the "deranged"comment as being kinder, particularly in the manner it was delivered in.
    Particularly the "new target" of mine that is actually now targeting me for exposing him as a hypocrite. Sometimes when the truth hits home, it hurts.
  21. Xelasnave.1947 Valued Senior Member

    I will miss "the god".
    Don't we all like an argument and being realistic I find it somewhat satisfying to corner someone like Jan and his refined ability to duck and weave makes him a challenge.
    I like to observe folk like MR as it is a reminder of probably how most folk manage life with superstition as their support.
    I enjoy paddoboy getting stuck into them..the entertainment value these folk provide is priceless.
    And remember if they upset you they have won.
    paddoboy likes this.
  22. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    Take, as an example the recent and not so recent threads in Religion in which Jan is participating.
    How is it possible that he "might just learn something" if there are zero consequences?
    If he can always trump any argument with "that's because you're an atheist" and " there is no God as far as you are aware", and there are no consequences to that, then he has absolutely no motivation to change.
    He can simply keep the thread going as long as he wants, saying any manner of goading thing he wishes, despite any attempt to reason with him.

    You say are reluctant to issue rulings on a thread you are participating in, because that might constitute an appearance of lack of objectivity, but consider the implication: essentially, Jan is protected by your presence. You're overseeing the thread, but you are (I assert) not being objective in the opposite direction - giving him a free rein he would not otherwise enjoy.

    To be clear, I don't want to see Jan banned. It's the behavior I want curtailed, with consequences. That's how one learns.
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2017
    paddoboy likes this.
  23. Michael 345 New year. PRESENT is 72 years oldl Valued Senior Member

    In my experiences (mostly with children - my own and with patients I cared for who acted like children) the effective way to modify behave is by ignoring it

    Showing the person that engaging in ignorant behaviour does not get attention generally acts on those indulging in such childish ways to change their behaviour until they begin to receive attention again

    It is the ATTENTION which children and adults acting like children seek. Deprive them of attention bingo most seek another way to obtain it. If the new way meets with your standards and approval feel free to engage with them again

    From experience a few are intractable and that's when the iggy button is used

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    Last edited: Nov 29, 2017
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