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Yes, We Who Run ATS "Sold Out"

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posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 03:58 AM
reply to post by smokey101

I actually look at it the opposite way. I don't think people are "fearful", but rather, "too comfortable". It's fine if you make topics, earn points, and to a reasonable extent, make ATS a part of your life, but what bothers me is that this is a conspiracy site, yet are we allowed to talk about the possibility of hidden, unnamed cliques? I made a thread here a while back asking to make stars and flags visible, and many users agreed with me, but so far, I have not seen any action taken or rejected yet. I'd like an admin to eventually comment on this issue and other users to as well because I feel it to be somewhat important, as do some other users (I don't care if I'm put at the bottom of a long list of stuff as long as it gets addressed eventually).

Other than the extremely small percent of users that may or may not do this, I do enjoy the content of ATS. It has more material on a broad scale than any other site I've been to. From the 15 or so months that I've been here, there have been silly threads here-and-there, but for the most part, there is good content here that, if the admins and mods sold their souls, wouldn't stand a chance of being here.

And now I'm off to bed. I better not regret this post when I wake up tomorrow...

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 05:04 AM

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 05:57 AM
reply to post by SonicInfinity

Whats to regret? all you did was speak your mind lol.
Anyway my post was again another "possible" occurance that i was suggesting in order for it to be disproved and/or debunked by long standing members and mods for the sole purpose of allaying any new members fears.
I kind of set my self up as the sacrificial goat just so i could be proved wrong and to make any newbies feels better about posting to the site.

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 06:03 AM
1) I think things are fine now. Members know what they want to discuss and you never know when a new topic will come up that no-one ever thought of. The more people with input, the more variety. If you are open-minded you can enjoy and learn from new subjects. That's one of the reasons I came here. The quality of the thread depends on the point of view of the person reading it. If you don't like it, you only need to click a button to come out and find something more interesting.

2) No - that would mean a handful of people deciding what made a 'good' thread. Give everything a chance, it will sink or swim on its own merits.

3) No list of subjects to be avoided. If you don't give bigots and racists a voice you will give them more 'cause' to hate the subjects of their prejudice. You know - "rotten, stinking whoevers and now I'm not even allowed to complain about them!" Don't let it look as if the sensitivities of one group are preventing anyone in another group from speaking their mind. Bigots are too thick to understand the subtleties of a debate so just let them have their rant and most of us can ignore them. Others might try to educate them, but it would probably be in vain.

At this point, can I say that as a newbie I have felt a bit insulted at being lumped in with racists, idiots and schoolboy pranksters? There's a bit of an 'us' and 'them' situation developing that I don't like. Just because I'm new to this forum doesn't make me new to some of the subjects under discussion.

4) Could you not approach the OP and suggest that the title is mis-leading or unlikely to hit their target audience? I imagine that most people would agree to a re-wording if they thought it would help their thread gain a wider audience.

I'm a bit ignorant of the way things work, but how would members identify a thread that had been re-titled? Would you put the old title in small print underneath (that would sort of defeat the object) or put a re-direction notice after the last post of the originally titled thread- that would waste the time of the reader and leave the original thread under the old title. I mean, if i had been reading a thread, went away for a couple of days and you re-titled it, how would I find it again?

[edit on 26-6-2008 by berenike]

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 07:55 AM
I've enjoyed reading the various opinions here, getting a little better "feel" for what the members want. Interesting.

The one thing that no one seems to have noticed, or at least mentioned, is the very purpose of such a thread, and what it says about this site. I know from personal experience that every level of staff tries to be responsive to the desires and needs of the membership. Here you have one of the owners asking if there are ways to improve things. That should make every member proud to be a part of ATS.

As a part of staff I'll not offer much in the way of opinions here, this is the place for members to have a voice. I will however mention my pet peeve, aside from the one about the headlong rush to put up BAN articles without doing a search, or even looking through the recent BAN titles. I want truth in titles/headers. In my personal opinion, if you title it "Proof Of Yada, Yada, Yada", and you don't have proof, you're a liar. Plain and simple.

And for those few who have hinted that disagreeing will harm your future with ATS, I'll have to call that one as I see it, BS.Even as a new member I have disagreed with staff on a number of things. I always spoke my mind in as forthright a manner as I knew how. (There's a difference between speaking up and being disagreeable, and if you can't find the fine line that separates the two, you'll be seen as a troll, here and in RL.) Obviously, if all the owners/staff had wanted were people who always agreed with them, they would have never asked me to join the team.

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 08:47 AM

Originally posted by lightseeker
SO - I agree 100% that the freedom of expression you refer to must be protected. But at all costs? For example , how can you protect a member's freedom to express themselves when that idea or thought being expressed amounts to hate-speech?

One's fortitude in relation to supporting freedom of expression is tested by abhorrent opinions. The concept of free expression is not so that we may enjoy opinions in which we agree or to enable us to have fun with gratuitous vulgarities -- it exists to challenge us to contemplate, and support the expression of perspectives for which we're diametrically opposed.

How can you include the knowingly and heartfelt ethnic and racial bigotry and degrading references to their intelligence, humanity or even their right to exist under that umbrella of protection? Doesn't protection of that sort of thing at some point come to mean tacit condoning of the very thought they are expressing?

And here is the test of our conviction, no?

Certainly, directly-focused messages of nothing but hate have no place on ATS. Those who would seek to proactively harm others because of ethnic, religious, or sexual orientation are mentally inept and often beyond hope. However, the expression of opinions of difference and intolerance fall into a difficult to define category that can find a place here, and be used as a catalyst for productive and revealing discussion. In nearly all cases I've seen, the best tactic against racism is simply exposing the ignorance of racists to the cold light of day.

It is my opinion that, for the most part, those who advance such ideas and rhetoric are not likely to change their opinion or world view based on the observations of how other members respond or advance a different view.

Generally I agree, however, I've known several people who have wholesale changed or moderated their stance on such issues. Unfortunately, it's come as a result of spending time in a heavily-integrated environment such as New York City. Spending quality time with with a diverse range of people is the most effective panacea.

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 10:42 AM
Posting on ATS can cause one to learn to be a better poster and to have an improved thought process.

Each poster is directly responsible for the quality of posts on ATS. If you only post quality posts, with a beginning, a middle and an end, that are well-researched and cited correctly then the quality goes up one notch.

If you post garbage, illiterate rantings and one-line posts, then you bring the quality down one notch.

Do NOT be concerned with what others post, except as a topic of rational debate.

It is up to YOU. Do you want ATS to rise in quality, then 'bring it up a notch'.

If you disagree with someone's post, the give a counter argument. Posting 'your(sic) a moron' does NOTHING but make you look like you have no skill or ability to debate, and are ignorant of proper usage of the English language. (it's 'you're').

Posting something without backup is just parroting what you've heard. Don't do it. Do your own research, question everything.

By posting on ATS you have the opportunity to learn and grow and mature and be tolerant. Take it, or not, it's up to you.

(sorry to be didactic)

[edit on 26-6-2008 by Badge01]

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 10:54 AM
As the OP in the other thread, I'd like to thank SO for creating this thread to get member opinions on the issue.

My personal opinion on the matter is that there isn't much that ATS can change without changing the nature of the site for its users. I don't know if I could recommend doing that. As it stands, the moderators do a decent job of policing the board for extreme comments and such. Often the most extreme and directly racist or otherwise prejudiced remarks are removed. Other, tongue in cheek comments will stay, and that's fine. It's about free expression. That's the nature of the beast.

It was never my intention to recommend changes to the site, just to point out that the natural evolution of the site lends itself to a somewhat self destructive cycle. As it stands, there are factions of people (quality posters I might add) who have already given up on ATS and made their way to other forums in its place. Some have even given up on their role as moderators based on the type of people gravitating to the site.

I believe in the model of ATS. But as the site grows, it pulls in a certain percentage of users that I personally find disgusting, and with whom I am actually ashamed to share the Earth.

Bill's comments about limiting free speech is absolutely right and reminiscent of a case I heard of in which a black lawyer defended a Texas KKK leader. Personal opinions aside, a right is a right, and if that right is infringed upon, one must defend it to their last breath. If not, they'll be coming after you next. But that doesn't mean the aforementioned lawyer needs to attend the Klan rallies or have a beer with the members.

The site should probably remain as is (with maybe a few additional moderators as membership increases). God help them though, I know I could never do it. I'm way to passionate and would likely massively abuse the power.

[edit] Horrible grammar on my part

[edit on 26-6-2008 by Rasobasi420]

[edit on 26-6-2008 by Rasobasi420]

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 11:53 AM
in all the years i have been visiting this site ether as a guest or logged in the only trouble newbees or people like me tend to create are ones that could have been avoided in the 1st place instead of reading the rules about how to post etc some of us are so excited that they cant wait to post or don't realise there in the wrong section to be posting, after all ATs is a huge well maintained site that takes along time to get used to, so after reading this thread i and others i hope will take it a little slower and learn the code of practice used in this site, i think the mods are fair and i myself have posted only to be told this post already exists so all the effort put in is now useless, this is only my fault and thanks to the processes that tell you your doing some thing wrong i think there a good idea. newbees need to use the search tool more before posting as myself will have to, but as foe selling out that was gonna be inevitable as things grow this nearly always happens tho i would not strictly call it selling out more growing and being tolerant to the few mistakes that do get made. this is a great site and it can only get better, if it ain't broke don't fix it.

[edit on 26/6/2008 by stealthyaroura]

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 12:18 PM
reply to post by AshleyD

Oh, my....Ash. I think you and I have the same sense of humor!!

We may be Polar opposites on other issues, but humor is a possibly unique condition of the Human Species. (edit)....that we share.

[edit on 6/26/0808 by weedwhacker]

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 12:23 PM
reply to post by Rasobasi420

To your point, it seems that ATS is having a long overdue existential moment. What does it mean? Where is it going? What is the purpose now versus what it used to be...

I see the need for some navel noodling by the admins.

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 01:10 PM
reply to post by kosmicjack

Fear not. I'm confident these guys know just exactly what they're doing. The Amigos have a plan and I think we're in for some interesting and exciting times ahead. I'm just glad we're all here along for the ride. In fact in aggregate, we're propelling the ship.

Pretty cool, if you think about it.

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 04:14 PM
LOL "quantity over quality"..."ATS has sold its' soul"...LOL

Too many are of the opinion that all opinions are long as they agree with mine.
Most of you are no different than anyone else...tolerance is acceptable only if you agree with me otherwise go away you moron...sheesh.

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 05:15 PM
reply to post by SkepticOverlord

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


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

No. Each thread has a life of its own, as it should be. What sort of edits are people really looking for anyway? Just because a new member starts a thread on a subject that has already been beaten to death, no one is obligated to participate. I think everyone is here to push the envelope of their knowledge, and no one is really on the same level.

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

No. Though I do understand that certain subject matter is "bad for business" on ATS, and is relegated to the backwaters of RATS. Business is business after all, and keeping ATS a "family-friendly" site is important for that reason. I would suggest however, that RATS be more of a "wide-open" forum where "anything goes." Perhaps there is some way of adding a disclaimer and age confirmation to RATS? There have been certain times when obscene and graphically violent material was quite relevant to a discussion, but was not allowed. The Max Hardcore thread comes to mind as a place where some "extreme" material would have been relevant, as well as some war footage in other threads. There are more examples I'm sure. There have been times when I did want to see material that was removed for being too "offensive."

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

No. Not unless it is requested by the OP.

[edit on 6/26/0808 by jackinthebox]

posted on Jun, 26 2008 @ 08:21 PM
reply to post by JoshNorton

mmmmm... Skeptic Overlord Pork n' beans!

And Simon is getting ripped. That dude should be rollin in the british hotties.

***Sorry... won't do it again...***

posted on Jun, 27 2008 @ 08:26 AM
reply to post by SkepticOverlord

Here is my ten cents.

The number of flags a thread receives depends on the popularity of a topic rather then the quality of the subject material . Over on AP I saw some of the highest quality discussions that largely went unnoticed because UFO topics and so are more popular with members .

If by exert editorial management you mean having the staff solely post topics and having members just post comments then my answer is NO .

This next question is trickily to answer . I know that ATS doesn't take an official stance on differnt issues . However I think that a members cross a line when they openly support say the insurgents in Iraq . In some cases a member is committing treason and allowing such talk is disrespectful towards those members who have served in past and present conflicts . Disagreeing with government policy or your country involvement is not the same as openly supporting your countries enemies.

I cant discuss my libertarian stance towards drug laws but I can support the people who are fighting troops who come from the home of the three amigos (SP?) . Talking about having your priorities out of whack .

Finally I think that a thread title should be edited if it is misleading or there is a spelling mistake .

posted on Jun, 27 2008 @ 02:59 PM

Originally posted by xpert11

This next question is trickily to answer . I know that ATS doesn't take an official stance on differnt issues . However I think that a members cross a line when they openly support say the insurgents in Iraq . In some cases a member is committing treason and allowing such talk is disrespectful towards those members who have served in past and present conflicts . Disagreeing with government policy or your country involvement is not the same as openly supporting your countries enemies.

That's a tricky point in my opinion, since not all members are from the US. And more than that, some members would prefer that their nation of origin not be known to the public. It would be even harder for the moderators to track which country a poster is from before applying a warn or ban.

posted on Jun, 27 2008 @ 03:15 PM
For the record;

I like monies too!

posted on Jun, 27 2008 @ 03:18 PM
reply to post by Kai Winters

Wondering if you bothered to read the OP, or the OP of the thread that inspired this one.

posted on Jun, 27 2008 @ 03:20 PM

Originally posted by Mainer
If the contents were not good it would not be successful. Therefore complaints == success.

You don't happen to work for Sears / Wal-Mart do you? That almost sounds like a page right out of their customer service handbook.

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

That's a loaded question, implying that there is indeed a "members-in-control" system going on. By the very definition of an online forum, that's the nature of the beast. Am I missing something else that makes ATS special in regards to "members-in-control?" Yes, the homepage shows popular threads, along with just about every other forum on the internet. Please don't take this as an attack, I am genuinely interested in how you are seeing ATS differ from another large online community with a front page that lists popular topics?

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

you mean in addition to the countless grammar police, the "this is old news" police, the "wrong forum!" police, and anti-drug police? What additional steps are you proposing as far as editing goes?

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

I believe if drugs and racism are off limits, so should discussions promoting violence in any way whatsoever (seeing how assault is also illegal). That would include personal experiences with fights, riots, etc. Also, if racism is off limits, so should sexism, ageism, religious intolerance, xenophobia, etc. Also, since the internet is a poor medium to establish sarcasm, even joking about one of the aforementioned topics should be off-limits, as it's unfair for a person to tell a racist joke in good humor, while another person is moderated for telling the same racist joke in bad humor.

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

I dont understand the issue here.

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