Civility And Decorum Are Required on AboveTopSecret.com

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posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 10:24 PM
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reply to post by Frankidealist35
 


I think it's important not to come across as the thought police. As long as the debate is respectful and not hatefilled and in most cases well reasoned, I can't imagine why any site would try and stop a thread about whether Obama is the Messiah/Anti-Christ, or whether Bush or Cheney or Karl Rove are the Messiahs or Anti-Christs or puppets of the new world order, or Lizards from the planet Zargon. This website encourages debate and discusses potential conspiracies openly and fairly and that's why it is so popular.




posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 10:49 PM
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*&!@#%& and the horse you rode in on!!! +*%&!@# and your little dog Toto too!!!

You mean like that?

Seriously, though, I've even gotten personally insulting u2u's. Easy enough to handle, just didn't answer them. Ditto abusive responses to my posts, just don't engage. There are some threads that seem to consist entirely of one point of view and one and all gang up on the few dissenters who dare to disagree and I don't even bother to post in them. These strategies work to protect myself but they also serve to dampen any real and vital discussion.

I think civility at the least is required to keep any genuine dialogue going, the kind that can inform the reader rather than just confirm or deny agreement.



posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 10:54 PM
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reply to post by Sestias
 


Agreed. It's also annoying when they type emoticon after emoticon in a post, putting on the "I'm cool" guise for the uneducated.

I'm glad steps are being taken to help improve the mood of ATS. If Bush can be questioned all these 8 years, why not Obama? I'm sorry, but the racist card can only be played so much before it gets torn in half.

[edit on 1/24/2009 by SonicInfinity]



posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 10:57 PM
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Originally posted by Majic
Permanent Account Bans

Members who are habitually abusive or otherwise commit repeated or serious T&C violations may be subject to permanent account bans.

In such cases, former members may use the contact form to appeal, but should be aware that permanent bans are never applied without ample cause, and are rarely reversed.
Is there an official policy on how many times a person can have Permanent Account Bans before they're, you know, permanently banned? I know one guy who just keeps coming back, spewing the same lies and arguments... been permanently banned 3 times that I know of, comes back, let's people know it's still him, and continues to post... When do the mods say "enough is enough?"



posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 10:58 PM
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reply to post by SkepticOverlord
 


I am not sure why or what you reacted to, or read into my post, but, just to be absolutely clear, even tho I find it boring to be nice all the time insomuch that I personally do not mind swear words, I
- do not like tit for tat sessions that go on for pages (I said as much)
- I do not like it when people spend their time attacking others instead of the issue (I said that too).

Your suggestion that I might want to look to other sites where those things go on was insulting.



posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 10:59 PM
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I can't say that I have participated in quite a lot of the political baiting taking place as of late... but I must confess that I have encountered new posters to the boards who have attacked, ridiculed, demeaned and at times outright insulted the other posters for entertaining theories that they have made up their minds about... and I would agree, it needs to stop.

I may occassionally be snarky in a comment, which I know isn't always contributory, but on the whole I do enjoy good discussion, reasoned discussion and I value ATS as somewhere that people who study such things frequent, such as Byrd or Hart or some of the others on the Archaeology side of things...

And most of which, even though they may be harshly critical, generally have less of a chip on their shoulder than those I've interacted with quite recently.

In my experience, such poor behavior generally is a result of rampant egotism or the inclination to believe your view is correct and whole-made. Teenagers especially like to think they understand myriad topics which they lack expeirence in (I speak as someone who clearly recalls the mindset of my teenage years).

Not to say all Teenagers are, some are rather down to earth and level headed. Just as any subsection of society, they are varied.

I was a teenage Drama Queen of all sorts.



posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 11:07 PM
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Wow! I have been away for some time due to a move and first thing I see is a U2U with this!

Political hangover anyone?



posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 11:08 PM
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Originally posted by Unlimitedpossibilities
It seems some people keep falling into the same cyclical trap that the elites keep providing for us, so this seems to be the result. Solutions are needed, not conventional partisan arguments. I do not know what else to say but please see through the trap that is so easily handed to us on a 'gold platter'.


There is a lot invested in the US vs. THEM mentality.

Without dividing us we might unite and identify what is going on
in plain sight, and in the shadows.

So it is promoted and fostered and will continue is my guess.

Simple logic is, if it works use it.

I don't like it either, but I don't see the political parasites changing
their feathers anytime soon, but vulture plummage fits them anyways.



posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 11:08 PM
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Very well said. I am glad that you made it a point to reiterate the rules of ATS, as it seems alot of people have been either forgetting or ignoring those rules.

It is a shame that we needed a reminder, but we DID need a reminder.

Not only is it time that we check ourselves, it shows the newer members that they should not have to expect to be treated badly and that they as well are not permitted to treat others badly.

Thanks for the reminder my good friend.



GST



posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 11:14 PM
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I'm glad this topic was brought up because i would like to raise a concern of my own. The other day i was reading the thread called:
"Operation : Expose A Mason Website"
and was appaled at some of the comments by a member called jpvskyfreak. Him and LowLevelMason were going at it but as i recall, LLM kept things as civil as possible.

jpvskyfreak on the other hand was being extremely childish and when i finally read a post of his saying this:

"I don't have to hide in a secret boys club like you shirt lifting bunch of losers"

...i alerted a Mod. He had also called LLM a moron and when i checked back, not only had the offending sentence NOT been taken down, but LowLEvelMason had been banned.

Now i realise that something may have happened behind the scenes and LLM may have been banned for some other reason, but quite frankly i was pretty disguted that this other guy didn't even get his remarks taken off.

He was not acting in a civil manner, nor was he showing any decorum...yet no consequences at all.



posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 11:15 PM
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In the same way that you're telling members to show some restraint, I would politely suggest that you consider the same approach in the moderation of heated debates.

A warning first is usually a better option than an outright posting ban, that makes more sense as a second option.

Use the Taser first


Your site, your rules, I just hate to see someone get the bullet for one stupid post.



posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 11:34 PM
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Originally posted by Frankidealist35
reply to post by PhyberDragon
 

I just begin to wonder if we actually hated the conservatives like that or we just hated the Republican party when they were under Bush.

[edit on 24-1-2009 by Frankidealist35]


The answers are yes and yes. Being a conservative on this board, it seems like it's almost impossible to make educated posts with a research background because you are going to have two or more liberal jerks come into the conversation spewing something something about "the last 8 years" and how awful things have been, as if they've been given a golden pass to hate on Bush and that it trumps all arguments made against Obama or the Democratic party, no matter what the subject is about. It also floors me the number of people I hear about either bashing our troops or bashing our troops in one post and then turning around and using their deaths as a means to hate on Bush in another post.

Seems like to get the point across you have to respond to venom with even harsher venom. I admit I've posted with a lot of passion AND venom when it comes to political topics because I deeply believe in the ideals behind conservatism and I deeply love this country. I hate seeing the truth distorted, one way or the other. I admit I've insulted people, but only people who crossed the line first - do not fire until fired upon.

Skeptic, I would ask that you also make sure that the moderators follow these same rules. There is at least one in particular who seems to think it's okay to call posters a liar and then refuses to offer an apology when proven he is wrong. Accusations of intentionally trying to distort the facts, especially by members who have been around a whiole and amassed a good deal of points, should not be the first gun you jump when you see inconsistency. There's most likely a good explanation if you keep an open mind.

[edit on 24-1-2009 by sos37]



posted on Jan, 25 2009 @ 12:42 AM
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This is all fine and dandy, but absolutely ridiculous when coupled with the immaturity, idiocy, and outright lying that's allowed to take place here. From a business standpoint (that I can appreciate), you want every click -- even if it's not constructive -- but it's destroying this site. Experienced members are taking flight because of it.

Anything that can be construed as a "personal attack" (and the mods take GREAT liberties when they decide what posts to edit or remove in their entirety) is subject to removal, but threads founded on lies are allowed to remain, as are posts that do nothing but repeat something several times and refuse to respond to debating points.

In short, this site is being dumbed down. Pseudoscience persists as the few try to actually debate it -- a worthless task, as these posts where the "pro" side does nothing but ignore points are not removed. Political posters who ignore criticism and begin repeating themselves instead of debating real political theory to find truth aren't reprimanded. Everything functions on mudslinging matches, until someone snaps at the ignorance and either has a post removed or the more common alternative of simply leaving the site.

But if you just want clicks, veterans won't help you as much as a bunch of rabid teenagers certain that they're right and you're wrong.



posted on Jan, 25 2009 @ 12:47 AM
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reply to post by Johnmike
 


We're working on thing JM. May I point out the Debate Forum though. Structured debates that are judged. Not for the faint of heart. We have some of the best debaters anywhere. No mud. It's very active. I recommend this forum for anyone that wishes to debate without partisan BS.



posted on Jan, 25 2009 @ 01:16 AM
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I'm a huge fan of ATS, despite being a victim (in my own eyes) of occasional Mod judgments that went against me. I'm glad this is a moderated forum. The other kind is usually completely ridiculous.

I have been slamming Bush since I got on these forums and am now retooling to begin slamming Obama.



posted on Jan, 25 2009 @ 01:54 AM
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SO, thanks for the thread.


I lost a good friend of mine on ATS today. And it was due specifically to personal attacks.

It's one thing to disagree with a view point from the opposite side of the aisle.

It's a completely different thing to then act uncivil as if they are not people and have some sort of mental deficiency.


From my point of view, mods need to become more involved in the discussions on these threads.

Name calling of any kind, whether Obamatron, or Moron is uncalled for and only serves to degrade discussion.

What really bothers me though is the huge glut of troll-like posts that we now get on ATS. Users which swoop in to a well thought out discussion, and say something like "Yer blind... yer Ig'nent!"

Mods would be very helpful in the situation where someone takes the time to perform research and posts several links and quotes only to be responded to as if you had posted nothing.

That's very irritating, and submitted facts should to some degree be verified by mods so as to help guide these threads towards intelligent discussion.

I'll miss my friend.



posted on Jan, 25 2009 @ 01:58 AM
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I have to say I have stumbled happily upon numerous threads and posts on ATS where opposing passionate and extremely well informed debaters framed their arguments, points, counter-argument and counter points with such lucid and fluid use of the vernacular, with such a brilliant and fluid grasp of grammar and sentence structure as to cause my first immediate thought to be, wow how much did this person or that person spend on their education? Their elevation of communication to a true art form in and of itself being that brilliant, I imagine it would be an embarrassing defeat to be responsible for sullying such a discourse with unimaginative and ill conceived vulgarities.

That the parties agree to disagree agreeably is and should be a given, as should be the basic premise of genuine respect for a decorum that distinguishes all debaters are equal in stature and propriety regardless of their individual position’s wealth or poverty in regards to those things.

A true free flow of ideas and opinions and knowledge takes place unhampered and productively in such well disciplined exchanges.

Ultimately knowledge and understanding grows from a myriad or sources, not all of which immediately take root and grow in a timely way, but do grow in good time when valid and the climate and conditions are favorable.

I do agree the best way to encourage the brightest minds and minds to become brighter is by striving to attain the highest possible standards and to maintain them. To that end it is vital to inspect what one expects from time to time and I applaud and support that wholeheartedly.



posted on Jan, 25 2009 @ 04:10 AM
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Originally posted by Retseh
In the same way that you're telling members to show some restraint, I would politely suggest that you consider the same approach in the moderation of heated debates.


Actually as staff we do. Most people who get off track often get a u2u fro a staff member. In 99% of the cases this discrete intervention is more than enough. ATS is different and we have our own society with our own rules and order. Its a hard transition for some used to a forum were ad hom attacks are not only tolerated but encouraged. Only after repeated violations or a extreme breach of the terms and condition are more strict inverventions applied



A warning first is usually a better option than an outright posting ban, that makes more sense as a second option.


Outright posting bans occur only after the a discussion by the staff. During the discussion mods, supers, admin and even the site owners weigh in on the issue at hand and a cource of action is decided. SOme discussions can be 60 or seventy replies as each staff member weights in on the issue. Some can be short in the case of someone say obviously spamming.


Your site, your rules, I just hate to see someone get the bullet for one stupid post.


Someone having a bad day and makes a mistake will not get a ban. They may have thier psoting ability suspended for a period till they cool off. Site bans occur after a repeated pattern of violations develop. Also bans can occur for behaviors and activites not always obvious on the board like a threating u2u to another member etc.

[edit on 1/25/09 by FredT]



posted on Jan, 25 2009 @ 05:12 AM
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As I'm sure alot of the staff here can tell you, I've had my moments, but I have found it best to hit them back with a well researched and pointed post rather than getting dragged down into a cat fight with someone. You don't have to sit back and just take a beating though, just remember to hit them in the thinking cap, that's where they expect it least and probably need it the most.
I think I've used the alert a few times over the years, and each time the offending post was dealt with pretty quickly, maybe we need a mandate from the staff to encourage members to report more offenders. I hate the very concept of narcs and rats, but this is a hell of a web site and I can imagine the wealth of information here makes it difficult to screen out the trash.
I would tend to agree with some of the posters here that have mentioned this policy seems to be administered lop sided at times though, one poster gets an insult through and the response earns a post ban or vise versa. True objectivity in any situation is difficult, perhaps impossible, but it's crucial to ensure a fair measure of decorum here given the content of this site and the often emotional responses it can solicit. If you're going to moderate, do it fairly, or get someone who can to do it for you.

We are Conspiracy Theorists, alot of folks think we are nuts, and they are going to come here and call us nuts, but let's not give them the benefit of confirming their stereotype by getting bent out of shape... it's extraordinarily difficult to debate something intelligently with a person who replies with little more than an insult without getting angry, but I don't think SO is saying we can't argue with one another, GOD I LOVE ARGUING HERE, but just learn to do it without being personally insulting. Instead of saying 'you're wrong because you're a doo doo head', try 'you're wrong because I'm right, here's why...'
I get pretty wound up sometimes here myself, but then, I hate everybody, equally though.



posted on Jan, 25 2009 @ 06:02 AM
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I would humbly ask of our normally very fair and tolerant moderators that they consider one point that I have seen other folks comment about.

If a mod decides to ban someone, that is fair enough in itself because we are not trying to judle or criticise the mods for their generally good work.

But as some folks keep pointing out would it not be both fair and wise to explain WHY the person was banned, at the very least it may prevent someone making the same cockup. Lets not forget ATS is a multi national forum with people from many varied cultures using the boards, some do have different approaches to debate that could accidentally cause offence to a mod.

Its impossible to include emotion in a thread cept for a smilies or frown so sometimes what is written in a humerous or simply cheeky fashion gets misenterpreted as abuse or threat. Letting us know why a person has discomknockerated by a mod would help us understand each other that bit better.
Anyhoo we dont have these problems on the survivalist forum because we are perfect





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