Making Sciforums more Successful.!!!

Discussion in 'SF Open Government' started by cluelusshusbund, Jun 26, 2014.

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

    According to the ban list, he was banned for trolling.

    The length of the ban is in accordance with the number of active infraction points that MR had when the ban was given. More points means a longer ban. It's not that hard. The policy is clearly posted for anybody to look at it. If you haven't, then go to the "Site Feedback" forum and take a look.
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  3. Russ_Watters Not a Trump supporter... Valued Senior Member

    To me it seems like the largest problem here is crackpots running amok and unchecked. Can you explain how reducing discipline will improve that or is that not the intent? Is the intent to allow crackpots free reign?
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  5. Stryder Keeper of "good" ideas. Valued Senior Member

    Actually it's covered in the draft. The actual idea I'm currently looking at is similar to "Six Degrees of Separation", however rather than showing how close together everyone is the approach looks at how we can still be close but separated. I would go into detail about it, but I want to get the working draft done first beforehand otherwise it will be like one of those Alpha releases identifying what it promises and being problematic if it doesn't deliver.
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  7. cluelusshusbund + Public Dilemma + Valued Senior Member

    It sounds like a positive approach which could satisfy the needs of a grater percentage of posters--which is a win win win win... a beter Sciforums... happier posters... happier mods... happier owners.!!!
    3 cheers for Stryders efforts :cheers:
  8. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

    This site really needs to decide what it wants.
    A pure science site would never have a section inviting posts about Ghosts and Monsters.
    This site, it seems to me, is a mixture of popular science, current affairs, general chat, and fringe science.
    There are no Nobel prize winners popping in to discuss their latest discoveries.

    If you are going to have a ghost and monsters section, which is very popular, then you need to get to terms with what that involves.
    You are going to attract posters who actually believe in the stuff.

    I believe that 90% of MR's views are nonsense.
    But he is a clever, amiable and interesting poster.
    I like arguing with him occasionally.
    He also posts prolifically.
    If you want the site to be successful as the kind of forum sciforums actually is, then he is a person to be encouraged not banned.

    Where was he trolling?
    What's trolling anyway?
    If trolling is having a viewpoint that people argue with, and putting it forcefully, then that is also a positive.
    If you want people to contribute and argue, that is.
    The best people we've got on here are all trolls.

    Please. Make up your minds about what you want.
    If you don't want fringe science, don't have fringe science sections.
  9. Russ_Watters Not a Trump supporter... Valued Senior Member

    Let me expand on my previous:

    I agree with the above, that SF seems to want to have it both ways and that that doesn't work.

    You basically listed three categories of discussion:

    If "professional" just means scientifically accurate and "casual" just means not required to be scientifically accurate, I don't see a fundamental difference between that and what SF has now. You have the "science" forums at the top, then various grades of "On the Fringe" further down. Splitting the "On the Fringe" in two, with legitimate alternate theories and anything-goes crackpottery separate would seem to be what you are suggesting, but that is a minor shade of grey.

    And that's fine if that's structurlly what you envision, but the fundamental problem remains that the crackpots are not willing/able to obey the rules. Several have stated explicitly (and explosively) that they will not accept being put in a non-mainstream box. And they have demonstrated clearly and repeatedly that you can't make them behave just by wishing it.
  10. billvon Valued Senior Member

    I agree, actually. While I often get exasperated by MR (why does he post on a science site if he gets mad when people post science based answers to his questions?) he is following the site rules. He has on occasion "gone after" people but far less than other posters have done.
  11. cluelusshusbund + Public Dilemma + Valued Senior Member

    I thank havin 3 catigories (shades of gray) is beter than just the black an white of 2 catigories an is key to Stryders plan... but i agree... as far as the posters an what they post... Stryders plan is fundamentaly the same as what Sciforums is now... but wit Stryders plan thers potential for thangs to run more smoothly... ie... less moderation needed-fewer bans... just move people to diferent catigories (determined by ther behavior)... an later if they request it... move them to a diferent catigory if ther curent behavior proves to be acceptable (as determined by the mods)... an/or they can be "baned" to diferent catagories for set amounts of time.!!!

    An the cherry on top woud be mods who look for reasons not to ban... ie... view a successful day as actualy calmin a heated situation insted of jumpin in the mud an addin fuel to the flame.!!!

    An as the last resort... any who still explosively reject this honest effort to make Sciforums more acceptin to a wider variety of people... will need to be baned.!!!
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2014
  12. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

    From my perspective, it's not this that is the problem:
    But this:
    I personally have no beef with people discussing woo and pseudoscience in the pseudoscience section, it's what it's there for. I don't even find it problematic when people post threads questioning aspects of the 'mainstream' or aspects of the woo. What becomes problematic is those who insist on posting only in the main stream science sections but spend their time doing little other than proselytizing their own pet model and thus derailing every discussion of mainstream results that occurs - and that's how I try to moderate the science subfora that I do moderate.
  13. youreyes amorphous ocean Valued Senior Member

    Biggest problem of Sciforums are the overly strict moderatorship that has started at around 2009. The current regime of Sciforums has formed a group of moderators in a mafia like organization of those who protect their "kin" regardless of validity and fairness. These moderators have desecrated, banned/killed, abused many legible Sciforums members...who are now sadly gone. If I name the specific moderators responsible for this I will too get backfired. The situation is catastrophic, I really don't even know how to save this. And organizing a revolution is impossible either, because this little world that is Sciforums exists under patronage of one who does not realize that the totalitarian regime that he has brought on had decimated his kingdom. Is a love for power game, only the love for power has won, and love has failed.
  14. Kittamaru Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Adieu, Sciforums. Valued Senior Member

    uh.. huh... so then you feel that posters that wantonly violate the rules and regulations they agreed to abide by upon joining the site should just... be given a free pass, I guess?
  15. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

    I agree.
    It is most often the edgy, interesting people who get banned.
    Especially if they don't mind having an unpopular point of view.
    The site has become a mod stomping ground.
    Not all of them, of course.
    Not even most of them.

    Re people posting woo on the science sections.
    Yes. Warn then, and if necessary ban them.
    The rules are plain. I agree with that.

    But for people posting woo on the woo sections,
    unless they are proselytising or breaking some other rule, leave them alone.

    @Whoever owns this site
    You must be crazy allowing your mods to ban someone like MR.
    His threads, and those like them, are your biggest money earners.
    Do you hate money?
  16. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    Take a survey, and ask the folks who are for or against the mods to also state how far they got through school and we will see a group on the right who tend to promote conservative politics, and who tend to dump creationism into the science threads, who mostly never finished high school, as the main opponents of the mods. Go figure--the rules actually protect "intelligent discussion" in the math & science threads!

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    Even the wackiest mods here don't hassle intelligent discussion. If not for one anomalous mod that was here recently, (ok one other mod who went bad on me) they've all treated me with respect, and I respect them for that, even when I don't respect every idea that they post. Actually, if more of the cranks tried to emulate the cool headed mods here, there wouldn't be anything to complain about. Keep your crank ideas out of the math and science threads, drop all the trolling, and for the most part the mods won't be forced to police anybody. But I'm glad they do. Only in very rare cases do I notice a wrongful or excessive punishment being doled out. And if anything they tend to be way too lenient to the trolls. But the trolls do eventually get banned, proving that moderation usually works pretty well.

    That's my perspective. But then I'm no Right Winger, and I actually graduated high school. So go figure.

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  17. Enmos Valued Senior Member

    You mean like... trolling?
    As for your opinions on MR's ban, they are duly noted. Thank you

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    An absolutely ridiculous argument. Maybe we should rethink the ban on posting pornography then.. Imagine the traffic that would generate!

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    Last edited: Jul 17, 2014
  18. Yazata Valued Senior Member


    That's just it.

    People seem to want Sciforums to be two mutually-inconsistent things: First off, an open discussion board that welcomes the general public. And second, a credible science discussion board that hosts intelligent and well-informed discussions of real mainstream science.

    The obvious difficulty is the fact that most members of the general public are largely clueless about the basic principles of science. They aren't really prepared to discuss advanced scientific topics and in some cases can't distinguish real science from what some people here dismissively call "woo".

    It seems to me that this circle can only be squared by employing moderators in the science fora that are prepared to behave more like science teachers. They need to be able to teach first principles, and do it in such a painless way that lay participants don't feel talked-down to. That's not going to be easy. It might turn out to be more difficult than conventional teaching.

    If that kind of policy was put into effect, what would the science fora look like? Probably more like high-school and introductory university tutoring and homework-help fora than places where people discuss the deep and arcane subtleties of quantum mechanics, the Higgs boson or comparative genomics.

    The same thing's true with the political fora. If Sciforums hosts them, then it's going to attract people whose interests are primarily political.

    In my opinion, one of the larger defects with Sciforums as it stands today is the fact that more of its moderators seem to be interested in divisive cultural politics (generally of the left variety) than in science itself, or the history or philosophy of science.

    What would people like Sciforums to ideally be? Once that question is answered, the answers to a whole bunch of other questions (how to moderate the science fora, what to do with the non-science and 'alternative' fora) will fall out by turning the crank.
  19. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

    Very simple solution: Buy and close down Reddit.

    That is the biggest message board out there and nowadays I spend my time there and hardly here. Thousands times more posters and topics, you name a topic and there is a subreddit for it.

    So in short, there is no way you can compete with reddit, and there is simply nothing you can do about increasing traffic. by the way, are you a part owner of this site?
  20. cluelusshusbund + Public Dilemma + Valued Senior Member

    I beg to differ (in part).!!!

    I thank if Stryders plan was put into effect here which woud make Sciforums more hospitable to a wider variety of posters... Sciforums woud grow to rival any other forum includin this "Reddit" place you speek of.!!!

    Of course if his plan dont go into effect here an thangs dont improve... i guess more an more people will be lost to them other forums... but so what... let 'em... they will get the standard Scifourm managment reply... "Dont let the door hit you in the Azz" :spank:
  21. Captain Kremmen All aboard, me Hearties! Valued Senior Member

    Let it be known that you are hereby sentenced to 4 days Karma
    to make up for the bad decision of the mod named Enmos.
    You may return on Sunday 21st July at 17:13 hours GMT.
  22. krash661 [MK6] transitioning scifi to reality Valued Senior Member

    (shakes head)
    some individuals minds

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  23. Trippy ALEA IACTA EST Staff Member

    Although I co-moderate the on the fringe section with Kitt, generally the only time I've acted in there is when:

    1. I've received complaints about abusive trolling.
    2. I've received complaints about spamming.
    3. Something needs to be moved to the cesspool.

    Because of the nature of the topic, with the exception of the Alternative Theories subforum, I tend to take a more Laissez-faire approach. Alternative theories is the exception because that's the difference between an alternative theory and pseudoscience.

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