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The SUSPENSION of illicit drugs/mind altering substance topics on ATS (The experiment failed)

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posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 05:56 AM

Originally posted by Kryties
Schrodinger's Dog, Benevolent Heretic and Ian Maclean would be my three votes off the top of my head. I will think up other suggestions.

Wow, thanks Kryties. I'd be happy to serve, if that's necessary. Despite not having posted on this thread in 90 pages, I have been following it since the beginning - well, except for a few hours of sleep.

However, even though I understand the flaws that are being pointed out in the current on-going process, there are at least six members on that list who I believe would be excellent advocates of the considerations I have had on this subject, and also be objective enough to act as representatives of the range of views I've heard expressed here.

So my preference is to see how the current process plays out, what the results are, and for everyone to then consider if the objections they've mentioned would lead in practice to better results.

Perhaps, once the initial results are tallied tomorrow, we could give each of the elected a few hours to post a position statement, then we could all look at and discuss that and see where the 'gaps' are? If there's strong opinion they're unfillable, I believe that we should then consider an expanded election process.


I would like to hear more, now, from staff as to whether the discussions and deliberations of this 'DISC council' will be public and open for publicly-readable comment. I tried clicking the DISC forum link on the board page, but it's not accessible.

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 06:06 AM
reply to post by John Q

Thats an interesting aspect. I've lost a few friends as well and in inverse Ive counselled a lot of people! Maybe instead of just a "addiction help" section we should have one that caters to all problems! Before then you could U2U me if you wanted to talk about anything

~to Niall197
As for the committee I dont know what you're getting upset about, all we can do is post here/message each other, I'm confused as to what decisions are being made as you are! Not like we have instant messaging you are not privy to

[edit on 27-2-2009 by Ridhya]

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 06:30 AM
Apparently this has become a fight for democracy now more than anything. $50 says by the time we finally get over this voting thing we won't even remember what it was we're voting for.

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 06:32 AM
I remember quite a long time ago when I first registered, I mentioned the hopes I had of Florida decriminalizing cannabis, I was warned almost IMMEDIATELY, and when I asked why (because I hadn't read the T&C), I was told EXACTLY why I was warned.... and you know what? I never did it again, you join the site, you agree to certain restrictions, simple as that. If I want to go discuss marijuana policies, I'd go to NORML, or another one of the thousands of cannabis related websites, it's really no big deal.

I wish there was a way to filter out all the retardation that stems from drug related posts... but if it can't be done it can't be done... BUT Imo... where there's a will, there's a way, maybe we'll find a way ^.^


posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 06:40 AM
reply to post by Springer

I applaud this decision. The topic of drugs ALWAYS devolves into a pissing contest between drug users for "bragging rights" It adds nothing to ATS and attracts a crowd that detracts from the purpose of this site.

Excellent move.

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 07:04 AM
reply to post by Illusionsaregrander

Much of what is said in this post is what i believe,

Originally posted by Navieko
Loam, I understand where your coming from. The problem I have with the expanding of the list is that we'd be doing so simply to involve and please some other members. Now there is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to do this, but in reality you have to ask -- will it really make a difference in the end? The likelihood is that the same top members that we have in the current list will still be elected, and in any case, whoever is nominated will surely be capable of doing the job, right?

So yes, we could wait a couple days just to please the others -- but then we could also please a lot more by making this forum a reality, a lot sooner.

It's okay to want to be involved simply for the sake of being apart of something, but when that means halting progress and making people wait, when in reality it would make no difference in the outcome.... why bother?

[edit on 27/2/09 by Navieko]

My remarks,

Originally posted by darcon
reply to post by americandingbat

I have to agree with you. Let the Sh#t hit the fan.

Things are set in motion, and if the people don't like the formed committee, re open the voting, or let the staff pick.

But we have already implemented, and have had the go ahead for this vote.

We cannot keep changing our minds about this.

Or we are going to Die Alone!

- Jack Shepard from LOST

And in the end, schrodingers dog is right,

Originally posted by schrodingers dog
I have tried to stay on the sidelines for most of this process, but please ...

... I beg you, please stop going around in circles.

Is this how any of us are going to behave should we be picked for this "thing?"

It's enough to let any member or staff observing this to lose total faith in our collective ability to communicate or get anything done. I am practically at the point of conceding to this reality myself.

Everyone can and should voice their opinion, just please don't do it ten times.

I have said my opinion. I may have said it too many times.

If you guys really feel this is such a bad idea, ask every nominee there opinion, and if the majority thinks this is a bad move(letting the vote go through), then so be it.

Just keep in mind this,

There was a majority vote so it went ahead - if we go back on that we will lose all credibility, and likely the process will not go forwards.

And maybe the whole idea will be scrapped due to the problems that it has caused and the ban will stand as is.

Apparently this has become a fight for democracy now more than anything. $50 says by the time we finally get over this voting thing we won't even remember what it was we're voting for.

In the end, me and others like me were just trying to do what we thought was right at the time.

[edit on 27-2-2009 by darcon]

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 07:04 AM
reply to post by loam

The list was never closed until the U2U was sent out - but, whatever.

This really is sad. Like I said, I'm will to give up my spot on the nomination list since this effort seems to be leading NO WHERE.

This is really the worst I have ever seen a thread get derailed.

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 07:08 AM
I've not read the all thread, but Springer's and SO's posts.

SkepticO declares many times that he's hoping to find a solution for these topics to be discussed again, within some secured frame not allowing such ATS "spheres" to be scrutated by Bots.

Well, is that such an hard bizness ? Scratchin'u heads, dudes ?


Just follow this tiny steps, Bros :

1/ INCREASE the "degree of commitment" required for membership :
When someone registers on ATS, he must declares on honour that :
- He/She does provides his/her real Date of Birth,
- He/she specifically agrees that entering ATS implies the possibility to be confronted with disturbing, and somewhat para-legal topics and/or opinions

2/PUT ALL Drug Related Topics on a secured server technically closed from all SearchBots as well as from all Anonymous Scrutinity [ie public, logged-off browsing], - just like R.A.T.S. currently is...

3/ CLOSE this Drug-Related Area to EVERY MEMBER UNDER the age of 18.

Is this so difficult a/ to imagine b/ to realise ?

> a/ R.A.T.S already stands for almost all the parameters above
> b/ Let the staff evaluate it...


On a side note, I must admit I too wonder finally if there's not some kind of conspiracy there, even vaguely unconscious, on behalf of the 3 Amigos (even if the official reasons are rather convincting for what they are : somewhat "apophatic" [see E. Kant] demissions...
), while all this polemic could just have been avoided with a few step taken toward a more responsibly structured's website...

And I don't even speak there of the NUMEROUS TECHNICAL ENHANCEMENTS the site could benefit from :
- an advanced search fonction, and NOT this cheap google one worthy a XXth century teen blog ;
- a way to summarize and list topics through many MORE parameters [number of views, alphabetical order, number of signs per post, etc] in the RecentPosts list, which could be much more subtetly colour-coded for a much easier read ;
- a way to show one CHOOSEN post within an entire thread as asked by MikeSingh long ago ;
- etc, etc, etc...

... which an entire different topic is, for sure.

Well. Long life to ATS, though.

- sorry for my frenglish, as usual -

[edit on 27-2-2009 by Rigel]

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 07:29 AM
Alright guys so what’s going on with this whole thing now? There are 30 new pages since I went to sleep last night and I had about 25 u2u’s about the process.

Are we still doing the vote that we send to BH or not?

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 07:33 AM
reply to post by nyk537

BH is going ahead with the vote, do not worry.

There has been much talk, better get caught up

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 07:34 AM
reply to post by darcon

No kidding!

I'm working on it right now.

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 07:41 AM
reply to post by Rigel

Good input Rigel. I see a problem or two with it, though.

You're exactly correct that ATS could benefit from some more technical upgrades. That's always the case. And, good point about detecting search-bots, for example using the user-agent string.

But I, for one, am against the complete segregation of drug topics. I think that the majority of the forums here do have valid topics, that relate to their primary subject matter, that involve drugs. There's been many examples on this thread of such topics. I wouldn't like to see these very valid topics 'stashed away' in some mostly-inaccessible forum.

And what happens when a thread, say, on CIA activity in the 70s, takes a turn towards a 'forbidden' topic during the course of normal conversation? Do we close the thread, depend on members to pop up and say 'take it to the other forum', rely on a mod to redirect or move, what?

It seems to me the goal of this 'DISC Council', in this matter, is to:

1) determine what censorship is necessary and desirable (and let's not kid ourselves; it's censorship) on the forums as they are now,

2) examine potential changes to the forums that would eliminate those necessities,

3) determine viable methods of implementing the most-free, highest-quality forum possible,

4) do all this in a sustainable way, that does not place unreasonable burdens on staff or make unreasonable demands of new or current members.

Quite a tall order!

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 07:51 AM

Originally posted by Niall197
reply to post by budski

If this so called election continues to its logical conclusion I for one won't recognise its validity or the committee itself. This committee will not represent anything other than the desire of some to climb the greasy pole & of others to deny fairness to their fellow members.

This committee of the few, by the few.

You won't be the only one who doesn't recognize thinks this committee has zero validity. Not by a long shot.

[edit on 27-2-2009 by Resinveins]

[edit on 27-2-2009 by Resinveins]

[edit on 27-2-2009 by Resinveins]

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 07:55 AM
reply to post by Resinveins

I don't think that's what we have here at all.

I believe we've got a decent sized group of members who feel they can contribute in a meaningful way here.

Whether or not a member is on the DISC committee should be irrelevant, as all members input will still be needed to help shape a new direction.

Some may see this as a power-grab...but that isn't what it is at all.

Not at all.


I'd also like to add that the members who are truly concerned about this are more worried about finding solutions to the problem than whether or not some members "acknowledge their validity".

That's not what this is about.

[edit on 27-2-2009 by nyk537]

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 07:56 AM
reply to post by Ian McLean

I also agree that an all free forum should be the best formula, but regarding your concerns, I'm afraid the soluition I suggest is by far the better to solve all the issues you point out.

But please take some distance, and see that once logged-in, you'll have full access to the site, - even & specially the "Drug Area", just like today you can see (what a privilege !) the fanciful avatars of our dear members. Area opened if you're above 18, a parameter which by itself will probably rid out 90% of trashy-junkie-druggy posts... most 18+ members seems to unanimously condemn...

[edit on 27-2-2009 by Rigel]

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 08:01 AM
DISC according to americandingbat

So, I slept, ate, had some coffee, and got caught up on this thread.

One thing I'm noticing is some confusion about what "nomination/voting" process is going on, whether there's going to be a new forum or not, what the heck a DISC is (and no, we're not talking flying saucers).

Here's my understanding of it, from this thread yesterday, particularly SkepticOverlord's posts, and the posts of the three or four members who were involved in the last Steering Committee, and also a thread about the last Steering Committee that BenevolentHeretic linked to in the midst of this monster.

DISC stands for Deny Ignorance Steering Committee. It will be a group of Mods, members, and administration tasked with finding a way to allow important drug talk on ATS without continuing to attract the element that has become too much of a burden to the site and its staff.

The members will have access to a special forum (which, Ian, if they do it like last time will not be readable by other members
) where they can brainstorm and argue and generally try to make this the best place they can for conspiracy and alternative topics.

All the people on the committee should be interested in this goal.

All the people on the committee should also have some interest specifically in drug-related topics: in other words, if you're only here for space exploration and technology, this is probably not a good job for you.

The member representatives to the committee will be primarily that: representatives. It is imperative that they be open to input from all members, that they be willing to pass it along to the rest of the group and if necessary defend it as best they can.

It is imperative that the members be willing to work with the administration. We may all be rather annoyed at the recent total ban on any discussion of drug topics, but refusing to compromise and to listen to the needs of the administration will not make the problem go away.

At the moment, we are trying to pick 5-6 members who will be member representatives to the DISC committee. Frankly, we don't need ideas about how best to allow drug topics back right now. Once the DISC committee members are chosen, they will need all the input they can get. But for now the crucial thing is to do as SkepticOverlord requested and come up with a list of 5 or 6 names who can best represent us on this issue.

(more to follow on the nomination/voting process, but I want to get this up)

EDIT: I want to add this link to the post SkepticOverlord said he put into the DISC forum to let committee members know what the issues are.

[edit on 2/27/09 by americandingbat]

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 08:08 AM

Originally posted by drock905
reply to post by Springer

I applaud this decision. The topic of drugs ALWAYS devolves into a pissing contest between drug users for "bragging rights" It adds nothing to ATS and attracts a crowd that detracts from the purpose of this site.

Excellent move.

The strange thing is, I keep seeing comments like what you have said. But I really don't recall seeing any conversations like this on ats, I must have missed them?

[edit on 27-2-2009 by _Phoenix_]

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 08:12 AM
reply to post by americandingbat

Sorry but I call this USELESS BUREAUCRACY.

"Be aware not to fall into the maze of deliberation in the name of democracy if you are to upgrade your democratic craft of deliberation".

May I suggest one more time this enlightening
post by Rigel ?

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 08:17 AM
The nomination process as it currently stands

Once SkepticOverlord announced the need for 5 or 6 members to represent the membership interest on the DISC committee, things became even more chaotic than they already had been.

I woke up and logged on at 3:30 AM yesterday (Thursday) at which point this thread was already 47 pages long, and the voting process was announced by page 30.

At that time there were (I think) 28 names on the nomination list and there was already a push to close the list before it got too big.

People realized that we should find someone to oversee the nominating and voting procedure first, and then worry about how to do it under their guidance.

Benevolent Heretic was picked for this task more or less unanimously. I don't think anyone objected to her leading the election (note: she had already stepped down from the list of nominees), although some felt that Skeptic1, ravenshadow13, or Reduppo, all of whom had been intensely involved in this thread, should have a part.

But Benevolent Heretic was decided on, and agreed to the task.

She proposed some possible means of election:

1) that we vote members off the list until we only had 6 left.

2) that we close the nominations as they were and submit them all to a whole-forum open vote.

3) that we submit the nominations to the staff and ask them to pick.

There were problems with all these ideas. I suggested that we try this:

Leave the nominations open for the rest of yesterday. Plan on having about 100 people nominated either by themself or by another. Each nominee would have to agree that they would be able to fill the role, and would have to write a brief personal statement about why they thought they should be a representative.

At the end of nominations, all the statements would be posted to one thread. Each nominee (but not the whole membership) would have a certain number of votes to place among their fellow nominees.

This met with some approval, including most importantly that of Benevolent Heretic who we had already elected to head up the process. And no one argued against it.

She u2u'ed SkepticOverlord to suggest this plan and get his feedback. His reply is in this thread; essentially he said that he thought we should choose among people who had already contributed to this thread, and made it clear in his ignore-the-question way that he did not want to be the authority on how we went about choosing.

So Benevolent Heretic sent out u2u's to the nominees, and we each sent back to her a list of 6 names. She will be posting the results later today.

(more to come again on renewed controversy)

posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 08:20 AM

Originally posted by Rigel

May I suggest one more time this enlightening
post by Rigel ?

You may, and I think your suggestions are good and will be considered by the DISC committee.

But the administration has made it clear that that's how this will work. They are not taking suggestions directly from members and making a decision; they want us to pick a committee as an intermediary.

You think it's needless bureaucracy and I respect that opinion. But it's the path that we've been given to get some compromise.

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