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Yes, We Who Run ATS "Sold Out"

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posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 02:35 PM
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reply to post by The Utopian Penguin
 


Yep .. my thoughts exactally~! Why fix what isn't broke. ??




posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 02:42 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
1] Do you believe our focus on members-in-control is resulting in a low-quality "product?"
No. I believe the larger ATS becomes, the bigger the draw for "trolls" (for lack of a better term). The more people we have, the more chances a person is likely to find a thread 'meaningless' in their own, equally valuable, opinion.

The big difference, IMO, is that the person who finds it meaningless, has the option of not reading into it anymore. Click the "back" button. There may be other members here whom would take interest in such discussion, and we (ATS) would be doing those members a great disservice if we held thread content to a certain standard of 'what some people like'




2] Should we (ATS) find a way to exert editorial management over new threads?


No. If i understand this question correctly --- it is possible for your 'editor' to misinterpret the meaning of a post, and 'change' the text. This can become subject to bias, and could ruin the feel for ATS. In my opinion that is.




3] Is there a list of subject matter (such as racism) you believe should be completely avoided?

No. I agree with you, S.O., the only thing worse than the epidemic, is denying the solution. The only way to combat racism is to speak out against it. To outlaw posts that favor one race over the other, would also outlaw posts in opposition of the afformentioned view. To simply say "never talk about race" would severely limit discussion in a lot of threads. ....in my opinion.




4] In the case of item 4, would you like to see us alter thread titles to reflect the actual discussion?

Absolutely no. I had this happen to me once, where a moderator changed the title of my thread. I cannot tell you how pipping hot *snip* off it made me. I chose the title carefully, it was non-vulgar, non-offensive. The title, in my opinion, should be the "attention grabber"

If creative censorship disallows people to grab the attention of an audience, then i feel we loose a part of our (ATS) soul. There are limits to this of course, where i would say

you CANT say, in your thread title "I LOVE LAMP!"
and have your thread be about the carebears v.s. the thundercats

but i wouldnt have a problem with saying, in your thread title
Thundercats....HO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

it gives you only a slight indiciation of what the thread will be about, drawing you in. If the thread title is subject to moderation, it can loose its effect and appeal.


Closing Thought



I love ATS. I have made a few friends here in the short amount of time i've been a member, and i've also seen a lot of questionable things.

What i've noticed more often, is that when someone gets their feelings hurt, and lash out in a very immature manner, the staff handles it greatly. They don't always do what you want them to do, but they always seem to have a knack for understand the best course of action.

I believe the role of the moderator is nearly flawless as is. It cannot be perfected, because the idea of perfection will change from one idea to the next.

If anything, i would suggest additional forum moderators, though that is just an opinion...

Speaking from experience, i can say that it is very frustrating when you have a troll hijacking your thread, and you have to spend time waiting for a moderator to act to it. I place no blame on the moderator, its just something that ive had experience here, in the short time i've been a member.

If nothing else, i'd like to see a 'little' more control over trolling and hijacking.

If you post a thread that says

"I like jelly-belly flavors 1, 2, and 17"
and someone comes into your post with

"The comming up election of 2008 will put the antichrist into power, destroying your jelly belly flavor 17!!!!!"

i believe that person should recieve a huge point penatly and an instant warning, with their post removed, if thats even possible?

Anyways - im sure you have your hands full reading everyone elses' comments, so ill shut up now.

Thank you for ATS.

Its a great place to dwell.








[edit on 25-6-2008 by Andrew E. Wiggin]



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 02:43 PM
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As a fairly new member, I can't really say if the site has sold out, because I don't know what the site was like years ago. It seems unlikely to me, because so many of the members here take this site very seriously. Not seriously in the sens that their topic is of life and death importance, but because we have an avenue to express our thoughts, opinions, and ideas so freely. This is valuable tool in the new age that we live in. To be able to share ideas, from the moronic to the mind-blowing, is a breath of frsh air in the sterilized corporate news saturated world. If anything has changed on this site, it's that the site has opened up and become more accessible to everyone, not just the "closet ufo freaks" or the "Nutjob 9/11 conspiracy theorists". Everyone has a voice, even those who really dont have anything to say besides slander and libel.

It's been my experience that the people that cry sellout ar the ones that don;t like the changes. Or they were ostracized for some reason. So they attack the most important thing a site and staff has going for it:credibility.I think this site is great, sure it has some improvements it could make, and not every element is fantastic, but sheesh, the most important thing a site like this could do, give people a place to talk and exchange ideas, ATS does brilliantly. And that's all that really matters, that the core function of the site is performing admirably.

I am in favor of community enforcement, if somebody steps out of bounds the community does something. If that doesn;t work, the mods step in. If that doesn't work, initialize ban hammer! I love that this site reflects the interests of community, the mods and admins dont choose what's on the front page, we do. Therefore, if we don;t liek what we see, its our own fault, not the mods and admins, they're just giving us what we want. I can't fault them for that.

I would like a way to only flag threads that actually have some references in them, as opposed to informative threads getting buried under flavor of the week threads. I think weneed some kind of vetting system, so the people with real information dont have to compete with the hogwash.



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 02:43 PM
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And now, I look to our members... your thoughts?

Thank you SkepticOverload, for including us and asking our opinions. What can WE as a whole, do to address these issues?



1] Do you believe our focus on members-in-control is resulting in a low-quality "product?"


I think that we have our fair share of "low-quality" threads, but I don't think that as a whole, ATS has become a low quality product. There are excellent discussions and brain-storming sessions that go one on this site, that open up new users, believers, skeptics etc..., to new possibilities. It turns on another light for them, to see, things perhaps differently.

I'm sure that everyone wants to see more threads of a higher quality, however, who decides what is of high quality? We can't create a mould for all posts to fit into...as dizziedame said, we should keep ATS free of censorship.


2] Should we (ATS) find a way to exert editorial management over new threads?


I don't think "edited" is the correct word...I think the threads should be monitored closely though and (Don't get me wrong, the Mods are doing an excellent job!!) Especially new threads posted by new users. There have been plenty of threads posted by brand-new members, with extraordinary claims with no proof, and all that does, is make us all want to sink our teeth into them.

These types of threads bring down the quality, and members accusing each other, doesn't look good. It makes us all look unprofessional, and it makes us look as though we are acting like children. Most of us are adults; we don’t need to act like children.

If you start editing threads, I think some users might feel as though you are infringing on their right to freedom of expression, or something like that. Maybe there should be some sort of screening process, once the thread is posted in a particular forum, it could be screened for its merit and credibility, or there could be stricter monitoring on threads that are suspected as being nothing more, than people trolling around.

The problem lies with US, the members. You can't decide who can and who can not be a member, this is a free site... but perhaps there need to be more post quota's... in order to chat you need 200 posts...Perhaps we need something like that for starting new threads? You could participate in discussions, but not start any until your post requirement has been met... it could deter random new members from starting these types of threads.


3] Is there a list of subject matter (such as racism) you believe should be completely avoided?


No. Subject matter shouldn’t be censored. Everyone who is a member on this site is aware of the Terms and Conditions when participating in discussions. Racism is a part of life; Members need to be more mindful when posting, as to not offend anyone. If you don’t have anything nice to say, if you don’t have anything noteworthy to contribute, then keep your mouth shut. There is no need for bigotry on this site. We are all members, we are all human, and we are all allotted the same right to exist and express our opinions, without causing harm or insult to someone else. It is our OWN responsibility to act respectfully.


4] In the case of item 4, would you like to see us alter thread titles to reflect the actual discussion?
.

Yes. As someone said earlier in the page, sometimes you open up a thread, only to find the title is NOTHING like the article. The OP has twisted the title or re-worded it, in an attempt to lure more people in. That’s not fair to waste our time like that. Each of us has other things we could be doing, rather than wasting our time being deceived. If the title doesn’t accurately reflect the post, then perhaps the title needs to be changed.

Just some thoughts, thanks again for asking for our input!
- Carrot



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 02:48 PM
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First, I've never see any thread that I thought was racist and if it had a slightest hint of racism, it would come under scrunity by the mods.

As for making money from the amount of members....hmmmm.. you can say that about mostly anything but, if someone is making money off of a idea they had because they thought ppl needed a place to post their opinions in a forum and it happens that the owners wanted to give members more freedom AND control in the forum; hmmm.. where's the harm in that??!!!!

or perhaps the person worried about the owner(s) making more than they do?

Skeptic,
for addressing this personally. ATS is still my #1 addiction and home page



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 02:53 PM
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As far as racism goes, it's all a matter of perspective. If you let it bother you then the racist won. If you just let it slide off of you and remember that the racists have to live with themselves every day of their pathetic lives, and I do mean pathetic, then that should be enough satisfaction. And that goes for black, white, Asian, Muslim, Canadian..............EVERYONE!

That being said, I'd bet half the racism posted here is just for attention getting purposes. That's below pathetic.

Peace



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 02:53 PM
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reply to post by SkepticOverlord
 

ATS compels me to think for myself, it drives home the importance of truth with evidence and it also teaches me to keep an open mind.

I love the threads here and look forward to reading them. Rarely I comment as most have voiced my words anyway.

I know some are fake, I know some are too obscure and I know I can choose what suits me to believe in.

No one, not even the rudest person posting can sway my own thoughts.

Please don't change a thing.

Rhain



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 03:06 PM
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#1) In some instances maybe. But on the whole, at least in the forums I frequent, I think the quality of posts are good. The good quality posts FAR outweigh the poorer quality posts. (Heck, I've probably been accused of a few poor quality posts myself!)

#2) I don't see any problem with the way it's being run now!

#3) Sure, but I think most of them are already addressed in the ATS T&C. If ATS starts "editing" posts, then who's post is it, the athors or the ATS editors? I know I wouldn't exactly like MY posts being edited!

#4) Yes, I think a thread title SHOULD reflect what the thread is about!

Maybe these are things that are more of a problem in other forums that I don't go to very often though.

[edit on 6/25/2008 by Keyhole]



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 03:07 PM
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Skeptic

I have two questions which have been running around in my head for a while.

When a member is banned what steps are in place to stop them re-registering under a different user name?

And also

The new anonymous poster option, i read that it was for people who did not wish to register to have a say? i also read that registered users where not allowed to use this option well because they dont need to, it was also stated that it would be checked for abuse by registered members who may want to anonymously say something without comeback.

Anyhow quite a few times now ive seen it in threads where an anon poster will say that they cant be bothered signing in, or they are at work, or some other excuse, also on a few threads you get the same wording in several posts obvious the same person one under a registered name the others as an anonymous poster, why is this overlooked?

I dont wish to look like some kind of kid telling tales, i love ATS and those who use it (with a few exceptions) but fair is fair, one user used this method using both their account and the option to remain anon and then went on to accuse another user of fraud , faking, even accusing the users wife of being a fraud, it was pointed out to a mod who felt their hands where tied because the T&C had been skirted around, but the abuse of the anon user option was a clear violation, if using both is a violation, it just isnt clear enough and needs to be posted just what are the T&C of the anon poster option?



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 03:09 PM
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1] Do you believe our focus on members-in-control is resulting in a low-quality "product?"


I'd vote no, with some reservations. There are some posts that are questionable but that is to be expected with growth. The biggest drawback is the multiplicity of threads, all arising from the same popular idea, ergo, Stan Romanek video, or threads offering differing views such as: 'We're weren't made to eat meat,' which led to 'We weren't made to eat vegetables,' and led me to consider posting 'We weren't made to drink beer.' For once, just this once, I didn't throw caution in the wind.

And not that there is anything wrong with either of those threads singularly, but when put together it leaves one humorously wondering 'what were we made to eat?'



2] Should we (ATS) find a way to exert editorial management over new threads?


Given the option, I'd let the kids play as long as they play nice. And as long as the topics don't degrade to "What ice cream do aliens eat with their German chocolate cake,' or 'What is the richest, best tasting coffee beans in the whole galaxy,' we're doing good.



3] Is there a list of subject matter (such as racism) you believe should be completely avoided?


Posting with racial bias, prejudice, and political slants do bother me. That's life in the fast lane. You live with it, or you leave it. I've already learned the next president of the United States isn't going to be any better than the last one. Most likely he's going to be the same bumbling fool, with his very own inherent, personal misgivings. We'll hate those misgivings while he's in office and fondly recall them when he leaves.

Still, the free expression of ideas are part of what makes this place special. Don't fix it if it ain't broke. And it ain't, so don't.



4] In the case of item 4, would you like to see us alter thread titles to reflect the actual discussion?


My biggest complaint, rag-mag titles! 'Greatest, biggest, best, clear, and brand new' are wonderful headers until one opens the thread and learns it isn't the greatest, biggest, best, clearest, or brand new.

Should they be changed? As much as it pangs me, no. When you've survived, 'Superman sighted chasing UFOs,' you can survive the small stuff.



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 03:25 PM
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reply to post by SkepticOverlord
 


Most people are slow to realize they must think for themselves, they need encouragement and help stepping out on their own.

But people without a conscience are everywhere with their little spider webs laid out, just waiting.

What happens is we get trapped into not seeing that we are letting others do our thinking for us by these flesh eating devil bugs, I call them the children of enmity.

In my opinion this site is best for the sort of person who doesn't see anything wrong with making merchandise out of others.

If you are looking to build up a following, that you plan to eventually exploit and suck for everything they are worth, this would be a good place to ply your chosen craft.

Work at it post by post, attracting the feeble minded among us, then pushing real hard on that herd gene character flaw, you can become a secular version of a televangelist, a regular Jerry Falwell who doesn't even need to pretend to be right.

In no time you can have you hands on any drops of nectar left in them, that the other insects before you failed to extract.

Talk smack with your keyboard all day long, bending the minds of other people and convincing them to pay you for doing it.

In a reversed demented way it's a win win for you and the hive mind, the collective of corrupt nature, which malignant soulless things of the same kind everywhere seem to share.

Who knows, you may even come to believe you deserve their money, or you've earned it somehow, fair and square.

Hell eventually, altogether, if you're good enough at your hustle, you can stop even having to mingle or spread your net for the lower life forms that'll follow you around always wanting more.

You can spend your time teaching others who want some of your action how to get in on the game of exploiting and manipulating the weak minded among us, and retire to the good life.


JSR

posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 03:45 PM
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reply to post by SkepticOverlord
 


1. yes and no. yes, because it is drawing a more mainstream audience. this audience is unfamiliar with the workings of ATS discussion.

no, because quality is very subjective. im sure the new comers are having a blast.

as much as I have complained about this subject. I still find very interesting discussions going on out there in ATS land.

2. no way......let it be.

3. no. nothing should be avoided. as long as its decent, and not just outright disrespectful and vulgar.

and just a side note about the threads in general.
maybe the old school members ( members and not staff ) should write a few threads on proper OP. or, on how to discuss topics with facts and logic. things could be included like, how to avoid pissing match. or know when to just walk away. things like this. for all the new people. just a thought.

4. no, however, I do believe there is something in the T&C about thread drift. I would like to see more interruptions by MODs to warn against "thread drift".

good luck with this thread SO. your always a professional poster.



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 03:53 PM
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No you didn't sell out, not at all.

You gave people freedom and a place to share what some times cannot be shared in public.

Like minded people gathering and discussing some times the most outlandish theories in a safe environment.

You just grew and changed, just like any organisastion.



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 04:10 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord

1] Do you believe our focus on members-in-control is resulting in a low-quality "product?"


I've only been here a year and a bit, but I quite like it the way it is. Yes there has been a huge influx and that has to an extent changed the dynamic but not necessarily in a bad way, it is a little less cliquey imo which is a definate improvement in fact.


Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
2] Should we (ATS) find a way to exert editorial management over new threads?


There needs to be less repetition and that is the only reason I consider it valid to remove new threads...that search function seems seldom used.


Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
3] Is there a list of subject matter (such as racism) you believe should be completely avoided?


To my mind it is all best out in the open so that we can deal with it. Opinions, beliefs and ideologies that oppose our own are a factor in all our lives, most are kept behind tight lips, festering like a guilty secret, everyone loses out in that scenario. Call me an idealist, but if we can demonstrate our understanding of those fears and address them here it gives me a little hope that the rest of the world might catch up with us.


Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
4] In the case of item 4, would you like to see us alter thread titles to reflect the actual discussion?


No, but in some cases spelling corrections would be a bonus (just to the title, in post it doesn't bother me)



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 04:12 PM
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1] Do you believe our focus on members-in-control is resulting in a low-quality "product?"

No: Its your typical 80 / 20 rule. I.e. 20% of the members supply 80% of the quality threads. Therefore, with greater member numbers, both sides experience growth. (Like any growing company, it needs to take the good with the bad).

Greater upstream control required – I.e. basic topic content audit for those (far out topics with no source). I.e. ‘Justify your thread’.

2] Should we (ATS) find a way to exert editorial management over new threads?

Yes – poor quality thread titles and content of the opening post determine the quality of replies (the correlation being strong but not perfect). As such, the thread will require intervention.

3] Is there a list of subject matter (such as racism) you believe should be completely avoided?

No – Racism should not be tolerated. However, it does not mean it has to be avoided. Deny ignorance is a double-edged sword here.

4] In the case of item 4, would you like to see us alter thread titles to reflect the actual discussion?

Yes – But only in extreme circumstances! As above.


**P.s. As an insurance of upstream thread quality control, (or to counter editorial management) a ‘validation star’ could be added beside the ‘thread topic’ (on the ‘recent thread board’) by mods, which suggests to the reader / potential poster that the thread meets certain criteria (I.e. title - opening post alignment / validated sources etc). Although, resources would possibly determine this idea’s worth. (A simple * would do).

Each post does not have to meet such standards, however, those that do will obviously receive greater attention.
Also, the gaining of a (thread) validation star could be awarded with x points there and then or after 1 week etc, if all is going well or terms are adhered to. The idea here is encouragement of thread self-management and adherence, rather than tangible control / punishment.

However, maybe in my newness, I am ignorant of the goings on and resources available at ATS and am completely off the mark!!

My two bob.

Breifne



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 04:20 PM
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reply to post by KilgoreTrout
 


Oh, I fervently wish I could learn how to take apart anothers' post, using the quotes!!!!

Not being critical, but just saying, since this is Board Business, we have a bit more leeway, I think.

Whilst I could, if I paid attention, learn how to pick apart another's post....sentence (OR sentence fragment, by sentence fragment)....I till would not.

I see this function as habitually abused.

Am trying to say....if it were a long post, and you wished to reply to a 'certain' sentence or paragraph, then BY ALL MEANS quote that sentence or phrase or paragraph. In order to make your point, that seems acceptable.

What I see, so often, is a 'SPIN' on someone else's post, by the one who comes along and starts 'quoting' and responding. I end up having to go back, and read the original post, to keep the context in mind, and not let some interloper come along to twist the words....

I do not presume to tell the ADMIN how to run their own site. In fact, I would suggest they do not change this feature. I simply point it out, so that others may contemplate the implications, and the possiblities for disinformation.

WW

edit....I am adding this ps....since we're on Board Biz....I've tried, and been frustrated, by trying to read the ATS Handbook. I've wished to find a .pdf format, or Adobe....anything that allows me to print the pages I need, to look at later. Sorry if my lack of computer skills are showing.....

[edit on 6/25/0808 by weedwhacker]



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 04:37 PM
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Originally posted by Rockpuck
I prefer a post that deserves a warn should be left unobstructed, so the members can see what, why about the post, and of course, to show the color of those who post warn worthy posts.

I despise the little logos and deletion of posts!


I dislike the tags for removed posts because I am nosy and want to see what the offending member said (
) but on the other hand, the warn tag only lasts for three days. Once it wears off, the unedited extremely offensive post will still be there. This could lead to confusion on the part of other members who read the posts at a later time and wonder what the mods were thinking or if they were blind for not seeing that post if it is unedited. In that respect, it is a good thing the posts are edited.


I agree with RockPuck, if a person gets a warn, we should be able to see it, so we know what not to do. With the logo, you don't know what took place and might do the same mistake in the future.


But when an entire post is removed, it usually means the entire post was so terrible that the whole thing had to go instead of being snipped. The very opposite of what you are worried about could happen: Someone would see a post [after the warn tag has expired] and assume the post is acceptable because 'if they can do it, then I can do it.' The way they have it set up works well, IMO. Remove the whole post if it is completely over the top or snip segments of a post that violate the T&C's and leave a mod note at the end stating why.



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 04:41 PM
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If its not broke, dont fix it.

Thats my opinion anyway. I would never have come to ATS if it wasnt for the wide variety of topics to discuss.

Quality means different things to different people; one persons sparkling gem is anothers pile of s**t.

The discussions are what we make them. Personally i find some of the discussions compelling, others boring and a minority of them just plain silly but even in those threads there are intelligent comments where free speech is being exercised and nothing is more important that that.

When we discuss we learn and push forward the boundaries of denying ignorance.





posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 04:41 PM
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reply to post by AshleyD
 


Yes, a statement of what happened or a quick summary would be good, so we know what happened so we won't make the same mistake. I understand off-topic posts, but some of the other ones it would be nice if a mod-edit was there. But, I guess you could argue the point, it's in the Terms and Conditions of the site.



posted on Jun, 25 2008 @ 04:45 PM
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First of all, let me state my opinion that free speech does not exist in a pure form on ATS. We can all name a topic or two that is verbotem. And then, there are the T&C's. Finally, ATS is a privately owned and managed board.

But that is not a totally bad thing. SO has stated the reasons for this very mild form of "censorship" in several threads. The benefits outweigh the minuses.

To the questions:

1. Do you believe our focus on members-in-control is resulting in a low-quality "product?"

NO. Overall, response to a complaint is timely, even if we are not always clued-in as to the reasoning for it.

2.Should we (ATS) find a way to exert editorial management over new threads?

YES, esp. in the BAN forum. At least make sure the guidelines are followed.

There are nuisance threads that post a link and a "Whaddya think?", but I chalk these up to inexperienced posters. Gentle coaching helps them to advance faster than the stick.

3. Is there a list of subject matter (such as racism) you believe should be completely avoided?

There isn't one already? Such as the way drugs are discussed? Yes, there should be. However, racism is not one of them. It can only benefit from discussion, imo.

4. In the case of item 4, would you like to see us alter thread titles to reflect the actual discussion?

Absolutely, esp when they have been "modified" to incite sensationalism.



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