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The Problem With ATS

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posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 08:03 PM
I feel compelled to create this thread because ATS has a problem.

First and foremost - ATS is a great site run by intelligent people with a fantastic vision. We all appreciate the site and enjoy it on a daily basis.

But it has a problem.

Perhaps this problem is only my experience, but i fear it is not.

ATS is becoming too ego driven

Seldomly could any of us stumble across a forum full of such intelligent users who live, eat and breath this stuff and whose collective knowledge is quite frankly scary.

This is, i believe, ATS' biggest strength.

But this vast intelligence is being wasted by people wanting to shoot down everyone else for the sake of their ego's.


Users creating posts and then other users, instead of coming in and finding every possible way to tear that person's hard work to shreds, coming in and actually considering what is being said and then working with that user to try and either add to the theory or determine why it may be off.

But what do we see? People typing with the ego's and trying to 'one-up' everyone else to be crowned King of ATS or something. They pick at the smallest of things, rehash information from other sources which probably only serves to make the poster look smarter than s/he is, and in the process make the opening poster look like a twat.

I'm sure they sit back, proud of their work, and cant wait to see how their 'opponent' wriggles his/her way out of it.

This is not the spirit of searching for the Truth and should not be the spirit of ATS!

I would love nothing more than to go through ideas together and reach mutual agreements on why a certain theory may be wrong, not what we have these days which is fight about why your theory is right.

There is another thing too.

There is a definite smugness developing on this site.

It seems that people who present ideas and concepts not backed up by a text book or peer reviewed paper are idiots!

Are we not here to question things? Are we not here to think outside the box? Are we not here to collectively seek the Truth on different levels?

I have seen too many good ideas shot down with the typical comment that "oh Dr Soandso from Where-ever University has proven that this IS THE FACT and that you are wrong."

Anyone who doubts previously held truths or facts gets pretty much laughed at!

People say "where's the evidence?" and think that is actually helping - no, its not!

Where is the evidence that the Earth is NOT hollow?
Where is the evidence that the Government ISN'T corrupt?
Where is the evidence that bigfoot DOESN'T exist?
Where is the evidence that past civilizations DIDN'T once thrive?
Where is the evidence that secret society's AREN'T as evil as some say they are?

Asking for evidence can work both ways.

And how do we know what sources to trust? On both sides too.

I mean, has it not been proven repeatedly that science isn't always correct, exact and unchangeable?

Wasn't it once thought that the Earth was flat? That the Earth was the centre of the universe? That the atom bomb would fry our atmosphere? That there was no cover up with JFK? That the US had no foreknowledge of Pearl Harbour? That dogs couldn't look up (sorry Shaun of the Dead joke)?

We, as a rare collective of truely intelligent people, should band together and work as one.

Not work as individuals trying to better our ATS score and become the smartest person on here through making everyone else look stupid!

I know i am not going to make many friends through this post and i know i'll probably get flamed and made to look stupid but i dont care.

ATS is a rare type of site, and quite frankly, it starting to becoming just as ridiculing as the outside world!

Time to respect everyone's ideas on here and try work together to find the truth, because at the end of the day; NONE OF US REALLY KNOW WHAT THE TRUTH IS.

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 08:06 PM
Just felt that i should add that i do enjoy opposition to ideas.

It grows everyones knowledge and opens eyes, however, it should be done in the right spirit.

It shouldn't be used to attack someone's credibility for the betterment of your own.

[edit on 8-2-2008 by srsen]

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 08:18 PM

I know i am not going to make many friends through this post and i know i'll probably get flamed and made to look stupid but i dont care.

I'll be your friend !!!!!

Your statement is true yet is not a problem reserved for ATS. It is a problem that encompasses the whole of humanity. It is mankind's illness. Animals do not suffer these delusions. At least I do not see it in my dog.

Long Gone

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 08:22 PM

Originally posted by srsen
But this vast intelligence is being wasted by people wanting to shoot down everyone else for the sake of their ego's.

On some subject matters, this is true. Unfortunate and true. 9/11, UFO's, etc., have all cried wolf so many times that the reader has thrown their arms in the air and have had it. Unless you're prepared to do your research on some of these subject matters, you'll be in tough to be taken serious.

I don't think this is an "ATS" problem, I think it's more of an issue with the overall subject matter. But I can say unequivocally that ATS is, and always will, strive to be better than the norm.

Some of the issues that you shed light on are certainly prevalent. But I believe the opposite to be true as well. We are members of an enormous board that is evolving at a pace that most of us can not keep up with. The day to day activity of the board is jaw dropping. So it's possible that a lot of the hidden gems and genuine comradery among members is slipping through the cracks. It is there, I assure you.

The bottom line is that you obviously care about this board and the community. Otherwise you wouldn't of taken the time to author the material that you have. I think you present some obvious trends that may not be for the best. But I also think that you are overlooking a few things as well. There are negatives and unsubstantiated threads. But if the positives didn't outweigh the negatives, we wouldn't be as successful as we are.

But again, on a board of this magnitude.. we're going to get our fair share of hoaxes and pessimism.

I simply choose to focus on the flip side. Makes coming here much more pleasurable.

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 08:31 PM

Totally valid point mate.

I'm sure there is more positives than negatives and perhaps the type of subjects i enjoy seem to attract negativity at times.

It just bugs me that with all the brainiacs on here we cant find ways to help eachother out more often.

And yeah, i love ATS man. Hence my frustrations at times!


Very true!! Why do the individual needs and desires always get in the way of the better good..

Mabe we can all learn a thing or two from our dogs!

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 08:33 PM
I wont be his/her friend.

I agree to disagree, ATS ROCKS! But yes, the problem at large is the ME generation of members who may feel they are better than other, but in reality are not. What needs to be known, is every one has a valid piece to place to input to the puzzle of th world and it's info.

Lost yet, keep tracking, you won't be for long.
Every one (for the most part), is here to seek truths, the truths of others, our own truths, and in doing so we collaborate a picture much bigger than we as an individual could accomplish, through this community we can put together that which we seek.

Be it a self assurance or confirmation frm another, we are here to
"DENY IGNORANCE", our own , that of others and in general the world over. If I make sence not, feel free to say so, but inside that is why I have came to stay. Not because I'm staff, but because this is a COMMUNITY where, even if we fight among each other, we are of the same stance.

That of finding out what is true, true in our minds as much as that of others.

Man is three things; Who we think we are, who others think we are, and who we really are.

Three strange things in the world: loving war more than peace, loving excess more than sufficiency, and loving falsehood more than truth

Truth, against the, World

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 08:37 PM
reply to post by srsen


Wonderful ! Magnificent !

Good on you, Sydney

[quote=srsen] ' Where is the evidence that the Earth is NOT hollow?
Where is the evidence that the Government ISN'T corrupt?
Where is the evidence that bigfoot DOESN'T exist?
Where is the evidence that past civilizations DIDN'T once thrive?
Where is the evidence that secret society's AREN'T as evil as some say they are?

The above should perhaps be the header for each ATS page.

You're right. Ego. One-upmanship. Getting buddies (or multiple IDs) to pack-attack. Sheer ignorance wanting to be heard. Sniping for the hell of it. Contradicting for the hell of it and claiming it as their 'opinion' ... because some people's only way of forming and voicing an opinion is to contradict what another has said (so tragically commonplace).

Not to forget those who're employees of Editorial Intelligence organisations, instructed to prowl forums and 'divert, distract, destroy' (aided by cronies of the same ilk) those posts which get too close to the truth. Illegal in the EU now, so although they still play at it there, they're being forced to find pastures-green back in the US ... where this disgusting internet pollution commenced: the brain-child of the usual- suspects.

And let's not exclude those who flourish as their debating trump-card the claims they are 'barristers', 'clinical psychologists', 'law enforcement', 'senior ex-military', 'professional photographers', meteorologists, jet pilots, etc. etc.

Maybe the situation could be alleviated to considerable degree if people were not able to post in a thread until an hour after viewing that thread ? That might deter those with attention spans of cucumbers, whose primary motivation is the need to be heard ... and to punch from behind the safety of a screen ?

Great post, srsen ... wish I could give it more than one star

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 08:48 PM

Originally posted by Dock6
reply to post by srsen

wish I could give it more than one star

It's all good, I gave him more than one, not for you but, eh what does it matter ...

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 08:54 PM
I must say i'm kind of stunned by the response.

I thought i'd get destroyed for speaking out.

Very nice to see others in the same boat - thanks for the support


Truth against the world indeed!

You are right, we ARE here to Deny Ignorance on all levels. Be it ignorance from a sceptic refusing to acknowledge anything outside the box, or ignorance from a believer who claims something with absolutely no effort to back it up.

You said man is 3 things - you are right. The only one that counts however is the last one.


Thanks mate

Interesting thought on the one hour wait. I wonder if that would work. I think it would force alot more thought as people would pretty much have to kill an hour before posting - time for some research perhaps! But maybe an hour is too long - 15 minutes instead?

I never even considered that people go into these things and 'pack hunt' so to speak or agree with themselves through different user names - i certainly hope that isn't too widespread.

A sure-fire way to totally ruin ATS if it is!

In a way, we are all Servants of Truth, each seeking in their own ways methods to wake the world up and free some minds.

ATS is simply invaluable when it comes to this type of pursuit.

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 09:05 PM
Way to get on the good side and score points with the mods..

Seriously though, I couldn't have put it better myself. Have made mention of this in passing previously but no where near as well written
I am tired of seeing posters bag an OP and try as hard as they can to discredit it and then on another thread totally condradict themselves by taking the same viewpoint they were previously trying to discredit.
I admit I sometimes post things I dont necessarily agree with in order to generate additional discussion and to try and understand the different viewpoint but do not "attack" another poster or resort to the immediate naysaying of what others posts for the sake if it which is something that really ticks me off.
Good works SRSEN!

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 09:28 PM
Actually, the reason I enjoy Above Top Secret is that we do have people with such critical eyes.

There's plenty of other sites for unbridled tales of speculation, for hoaxes and lies, for distortions and dime store astrology.

We're here to search for the truth. And extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof.

Now I'm not saying that we don't listen to what people have to say, nor that we aren't polite. But I think we already have a strong ratio of noise here, and a little healthy skepticism will help filter some of that out. People shouldn't be surprised when they say their grandmother gave the neighbor boy the evil eye and his hair turned white, that they're asked to at least post a picture.

[edit on 8-2-2008 by Jadette]

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 09:42 PM
Well, I don't see this problem being with ATS, I see it being with you.

This is the largest conspiracy discussion board going. It takes guts to step up and post a thread and put yourself on the line. It takes enough guts to know your going to get slammed by those that disagree.

Some of them will simply nit-pick, some will make valid points against you and in some threads the author will be flat out proven to be wrong. I've seen it happen many times.

My point is this: ATS has never promised anyone the truth about the matters we discuss, They have only promised civil discussion about the events taking place in the world. The owners and staff have never claimed to have parts of UFO's or alien bodies. They've never tried to read your mind or give you lotto numbers. All they have ever offered is civil discussion in a well moderated forum.

That doesn't mean they will protect you from people with valid questions about whatever you are offering up for discussion. That doesn't mean they have to protect you from the nitpickers. Nitpickers have valid questions just as serious debaters have questions.

The staff of this board know when someone is simply being a pain and when they are trolling a thread. You should leave that call up to them. If you think they aren't doing their job there is a complain button to get their attention.

What you are saying is, "The problem with ATS," I find to be one of it's better points.

I guess it's just a matter of perspective.

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 09:49 PM
im in the process of debunking this thread now...

ha, just kidding.

I wouldn't really call this a "problem" of ATS, but rather a characteristic. I've learned to live with it, although it does make me die a little bit inside.

posted on Feb, 8 2008 @ 10:32 PM
reply to post by mrwupy

ATS has never promised anyone the truth about the matters we discuss, They have only promised civil discussion about the events taking place in the world.

I think you may have missed my point a little

I don't want ATS to give me truth. I dont want ATS to give me protection.

I am simply stating, in a nutshell, that the manner in which certain posters go about their posting is not in the right spirit.

They try to shot people down by building themselves up. Its very ego-driven and thats a real shame considering the brains these people obviously have.

I just think we could achieve more if we didn't try to be better than other posters and worked together to find a closer version of truth.

posted on Feb, 9 2008 @ 02:24 AM
reply to post by srsen

I do agree with you srsen... BUT... I think the true issue is most people don't know how to debate. Yes things can get heated, and sometimes emotional... BUT because we have differing views DOES NOT mean we are wrong, The issue lies in people deciding to name call, and go for the low blow. I can take the heat of a good debate (heck, I know I have angered more than my fair share of ATSer's, but I kinda take pride in it[as this is a sign you have completed your goal of proving your side to be the stronger point, without the emotional reaction]), the question lies in; how do we teach our newer members how to debate, without going for the lowest common denominator?

It all lies in respect for your fellow members well balanced with a passion for the board.

A good point would be that another member and I were recently going through the back and forth on a thread, when the name calling started (thus my reason for not naming names or pointing to threads.) My response? to weaken their argument by pointing out they went to the lowest common denominator. A common tactic to gain advantage in the debate.

Remember one thing. We learn new things throughout our lives. Sometimes we're the teacher, most times we're the student. If we can all agree that this is the case, a LOT of Ego and ID issues on this board will subside very quickly.

Hopefully our membership will stick to the adult ideology of "turn the other cheek" as opposed to the childish "eye for an eye". Sometimes (myself included) we have to just sit back and accept, we may not be 100% correct.

ALSO let's not forget we have one of the BEST moderation staffs on the internet. MOST problem threads are shot down, and filed in folder "13" (a.k.a. trash) before they become to much of an issue.

If we all fall in love with the alert button (but not so in love we click it everytime we don't like a comment) our mods will be glad to investigate the corresponding thread, and take proper actions (warn, ban, trash-bin, closed thread) It's our board... WE have to take the control that is given to us. The mods aren't omnipotent. Sometimes they need a little direction (maybe even light finger pointing

I hope you fall back in love SRSEN... It sucks to lose logical, intelligent members.

Edit to add the N't to are from the statement "The mods are omnipotent"
as much as we treat 'em that way, I don't want to come out and directly say they are the gods of ATS

[edit on 2/9/2008 by coven]

posted on Feb, 9 2008 @ 04:17 AM
reply to post by srsen

I do kind of agree with what you are saying, I spend quite a bit of time in the UFO forum, and as a skeptic I always try to look at both points of view, and I always question my own beliefs but it often frustrates me when a new thread appears, UFO sightings, abduction, etc, the op posts their story, the skeptics cry "physical evidence" believers say "we dont have any" then the story closes. Only to start all over again with a new op.

There is so much more to look at in these threads than just "physical evidence" whats the character of the op, why are they doing this, are they happy / scared about telling their story, has this happened to them before etc, I just wish skeptics would look a little deeper into each thread thats posted or bend a little with their own way of thinking. I did make this point on another thread with other skeptics but I think it was over looked or ignored.

But I did say kind of, I have been lucky enough to work on a thread where the op, skeptic and believer all worked together.... it was an amazing story and I really enjoyed being involved with it.

So dont give up, they do happen...



posted on Feb, 9 2008 @ 05:01 AM
Great thread and very true. We all have our egos and while some feel they have earned that by being here for so long they sometimes fail to realize that no matter how big they think they are, many of those reading & responding to their posts have never read their work & thus if you want your ego stroked or respected you need to earn it again every day by what you say.

While it can be frustrating for oldsters to read the same old stuff that was argued to the ground about last year - they need to either point folks in the right direction with a link or just back off with the criticism of folks for not doing a proper search. If you don't want to help by putting in a link along with your lecture don't bother & take a break from this board for awhile.

If you can't tolerate ignorance enough to help educate someone no matter how dim the bulb may seem then maybe you should be at an academic site with peers of your same educational background and not here with 5th graders on up.

Deny Ignorance should not mean "go away" it should mean come and learn.

What we need the most is understanding that we all have different backgrounds with all educational levels and some speaking (writing) in a second language.

Not everyone has been using computers or visiting boards long enough to understand all the ins & outs of search tools. I've been computing for 22 years & on BBS's then WWW for over 15 years and I still don't find all my searches.

As others have pointed out it's not just an ATS thing it's the nature of this kind of board. I hate to say it but, I've road several boards up near the top & then down when they get so popular that the original interest gets lost and what you went there for originally is no longer the focus. Sometimes the sites get so infiltrated by "Groupies" nobody even dares posting, because they fear the criticism.

Personally I don't mind heated arguments, because usually in the end if both parties are actually reading each others post they eventually turn off the heat with no long term ill will.

Though I do hate reply's where people just attack you personally instead of discussing your points. Name calling is okay with me, but mean spirited nasty personal attacks are a board turn off. Taking it too the edge can be gratifying as long as nobody gets hurt - Yeah, I'm guilty sometimes - Perfection not yet.

[edit on 9-2-2008 by verylowfrequency]

posted on Feb, 9 2008 @ 06:35 AM
Deny Ignorance should not mean "go away" it should mean come and learn.

I just wanted to make sure EVERYBODY saw that part.

verylowfrequency... It's thinking like that, that gives me hope... and it makes me think your going to be a GREAT contributor to this board... (now don't go and let me down


edit for... well I suck at HTML... lets just leave it at that.

edited again to add... Come on Mods... throw this guy some points for that... that was A GREAT POST...

[edit on 2/9/2008 by coven]

posted on Feb, 9 2008 @ 10:11 AM
I am new to ATS. I was turned on to the site by a friend. Personally, I find the threads with heated debate to be most interesting. I enjoy reading the posts immensely. I like to look at both sides.

With that in mind I need to confess that before I found ATS I considered myself to be worldly, street wise and well informed. I have a fair command of history, literature and current events. Upon reading the many threads, making a few myself and so on, I now see the wide range of knowledge, wide social strata (world wide), in depth first hand observers…etc, etc that makes up ATS.

The personal result of confronting the combined “Jungian” mind of ATS pushed me further into research, reading and forays into new areas of knowledge. It is truly a remarkable web site.

posted on Feb, 9 2008 @ 10:20 AM
I agree it is a problem, it is not unique to ATS alone, but ATS has more than it's fair share compared to other sites of it's nature. (although those sites are smaller, perhaps easier to moderate)

Either way i stop posting in most other forum's and instead focus on current events and other less "out there" topics, because of the exact reasons the OP states.

Wr Wupy say's it's simply the OP's problem. Well what happens when it is obvious that many people think it's a problem. I do , and i have for months. When alot of ATS members aren't happy , that is ATS's problem.

What can be done is another question, but other boards i visit have more "harmony" and willingness to look at an idea ( a unconventional idea) and say , sure that may be possible, gee thanks for getting me to look into that.

It seems certain mods that think inside the box are promoted and often stem any threads that are starting to get a consensus thus containing any (non peer-reviewed ideas) from gaining legitimacy at least as an option.

Not saying they are dishonest , just their natural way of thinking, but promoting moderators who think in a certain way vs. moderators who are liberal thinkers make a tremendous difference, because with a moderator who has set beliefs and only grants worthyiness to "established facts" when they chime in their 02 cents, that the authority and trust their moderator tages carry can contribute greatly to shaping members attitude's, especially when done repetively. There also seems a vast lack of conceeding many alternative theory's are very well possible, and when done so are done in condescending or in "tin foil" ways.

If this were a gov't forum to discuss and repeat establishement views and perspectives that would seem fine, but this is a place where people supposedly go to search for the "real truth" , or the story's that don't make the new's, or getting the unspun perspectives from people who are open to consider other's opinion's. Considering and giving legitamicy to a alternative theory does not make it true, only when you REFUSE To consider it in the first place, you are acting like you know it all, and that is quite ignorant and egotistical.

Let me finish with saying i still like ATS, it is very large and has a great archve or info, and their are a ton of great mods, i just think their is a bit of room for improvement.

[edit on 9-2-2008 by cpdaman]

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