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We must end the rising "culture of negativity" (SOLUTION POSTED)

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posted on May, 5 2009 @ 10:27 PM

posted on May, 5 2009 @ 10:30 PM

Originally posted by twitchy

For crying out loud....
He's a known troll? Says who? You? Your post is a great example of why a voting system is a bad idea. Say somebody else sees you call him a troll and votes down the next thread he posts just because a member like you decided to throw a label on him. Where do you get the right to call someone here a troll? Can I have a little badge and flashlight too?
I'd say wasting everybody's time to post that someone is a troll is sort of like trolling too.

Yeah he is.

A list of previous aliases:

and the latest elijahspirit

plus many more no doubt.

Same posting style, same attitude

So please don't go calling me a troll for calling this guy a troll, I have had to put up with abusive U2U's, derogatory comments left on my profile and in many threads from this guy.

In short.

This individual is the epitome of what SO is describing.

posted on May, 5 2009 @ 10:31 PM
reply to post by SkepticOverlord

we could instigate a change with a system that rewards positive posts... could connect the 'star system' to the 'points' system.

posted on May, 5 2009 @ 10:32 PM

Originally posted by SkepticOverlord

Originally posted by zazzafrazz
but nice hat Skeptic Overlord, it strikes terror in my heart!

It's my cinco de mayo hat!

Dancing salsa, drinking tequila. and listening to Tito Puente.

Anyone familiar?

EDIT: 3 amigos, Do you know what a plethora is!! Oh gosh thank you that is one of my favourite skits!

[edit on 5-5-2009 by zazzafrazz]

posted on May, 5 2009 @ 11:11 PM
There is too much negativity for sure. As part of an informal internet Indigo network that spans several dozen boards, we've realized we are a target. Notice the low post count...its for a reason. Some Indigos are even thinking of seeking specific legal hate crime and discriminatory protection in the workplace and elsewhere. I know a number of indigos and fauns/faery bloodline-folk that have been run off so-called alternative boards where people should be more accepting.

I think an indigo-only, password-protected ATS sub board would be a good place to start, plus admin u2uing on the "indigo problem," but I doubt many will agree... *sigh*

posted on May, 5 2009 @ 11:15 PM
Honestly SO, unless your nuts are situated between the jaws of a bench vise and some agent of some alphabet org is at the helm, I say go with the flow.
I would certainly hope though, a man of your brass would scream something to the effect of "there will be no censorship at ATS!" "Ever!"

Whilst there are alot of interesting 'fixes' proposed here by us... realistically there is one very simple and effective one that I feel most of us are overlooking that would remedy the situation at hand. Please allow me to explain:

Being as broad-scoping as this resource is, it is just that... it is a resource driven by us. We create it, we allow it to come to fruition as we chose. We here, well as far as I know at least... we are all humans I would think. We all feel compassion for our fellow members, or at least I would hope so. So, ya know... I would expect that when some negative poster comes along, or the topic strays into a pissing war between a couple of posters that there would at least be someone that has the proverbial brass to stand up and say something like: "Dude (or Dudette) you are way outa line"

I know that is what the mods are for, but there are too many times where I have watched a thread degenerate to that level and everyone backed off and let it go.
Human nature probably, we know that most people don't want to get into conflict of any kind (well... some) but it is survival of the fittest here, and maybe anarchy is the best policy.

By no means am I advocating total chaos, stricter mods or self-proclaimed police roving the boards here, as there will always be rotten apples and negativity. To pidgeonhole things will not help, and to restrict the free speech that we have here... likewise. Please think about it, and don't let one (or a few) spoil the bunch for the sake of the batch. But I do like the idea of the BS O' meter or Truth O' Meter, as far as threads go... implemented board-wise it could be effective I just don't know the logistics required to make a workable system.

Step up members, when you see someone talking trash... say something.
[It is Our Duty Afterall]
Sorry for the rant, but I had to put my chips in...

(Just working off of DocVelocity's idea)
Hope you don't mind Doc

Words of wisdom
Let it be,

[edit on 09/5/5 by telemetry]

posted on May, 5 2009 @ 11:15 PM
Well... this thread has certainly gone in several directions, and unfortunately, like many other "we have a problem, how do our members think we could fix it" threads, there are also several examples of the actual problem. However, I think the overall discuss was productive and I want to thank everyone who participated for jumping in with comments and suggestions.

Just to clarify, one more time, with perhaps improved focus, these are the core points...

We staff (and clearly many members) have noticed a slowly-creeping undercurrent of negativity that may be as old as 20+ months.

The "negativity" is not to be confused with well-delivered pointed arguments that contribute to the flow of conversation.

The "negativity" appears to have some origins in either tiresome topics, or topics that begin with a highly confrontational premise.

We're also seeing this "negativity" in the form of some members who are habitual in their rancor, showing in nearly every post they make.

No one is suggesting any level of censorship or topical control of any type (although the potential need was posed as a question to our members).

While many posts in this thread have brought up interesting suggestions, many are either unworkable, or have been tried and failed in the past. However, a few suggestions have formed the basis for some new moderation tactics that our staff will begin to add to their daily routine, as well as some additional efforts for new members.

First, we're working harder to help new members understand what is different about ATS. The video embedded at the bottom of this post has been on the new-member registration form for several weeks, we're going to make it more prominent and included additional information in the confirmation email as well as a new-member U2U.

New members will be on an informal three-month probationary period. I've modified site code so that our staff can more easily recognize who is a new member for two reasons. First, so that we spot "rookie" mistakes more easily and inform the new users before their actions result in something more serious. Second, the new members will know there is a probationary period wherein significant offenses may result in swifter-than-normal action on the status of their account. I think some of our problem lies in educating new members as to our desire for ATS to be different... combined with perhaps not immediately noticing people who register with a plan to be disruptive from the start. (I say "informal" because there's no special site code or additional rules, simply a period where we try to provide improved attention from staff during the first few months.)

New members must attain 20 replies before they can create new threads. This may help stem the tide of "tiresome" topics by helping to direct the members to existing threads to gain some posting experience before they're able to create new threads. However, we're not tyrants, if a new member has an important topic to share, they'll be provided with an easy way to alert staff so that we can enable them to create the thread. (This will take a few days to get the new code integrated.)

We're going to be more proactive with the "Right of Community Management" clause of the Terms & Conditions. Members who portray a penchant for consistently posting derogatory comments, insults, and acidic replies will be noticed. Pure trolls will not be tolerated. Those who "take the piss" every once in a while in the course of a heated but productive thread have nothing to worry about.

We'll be creating a new forum for topics that are classified as hoaxes, frauds, or fakes. The "Hoaxes And The Bizarre" forum will soon be the new location for all such topics. This will provide people the opportunity to continue discussing the topics, where previously the thread may have been closed or removed. Threads in the forum forum will not have stars or flags, and will not appear on the site home.

There will be no alterations to the Terms & Conditions as a result of this discussion.

There will be no new posting restrictions.

There are a few new tactics our staff will employ.

There will be a better effort to inform new members about why we're different.

Thanks again for your participation in have an open discussion.

(thread is temporarily closed to ensure everyone sees this post... then it will open for replies for a while, then close for good)

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 12:22 AM
I like your efforts in having a positive world view.
However i feel suppressing it will not allow people to see their mistakes, course of action or perception to a more positive one.
You need to CREATE a flow of movement in your words in order for it to catch on like wildfire. When others see how appropriately other's have behaved then they will follow suit. This is exactly what the truth movement is all about. You need to set examples rather then pushover's. If we are just to dispose of our fellow beings then what have we been examples of.
It underestimates our ability to coerce on simple terms and in doing so go's aginst the very grain of what we are all about free and open minded spirits with a right to choose what path we should take whether good or bad.
It takes courage and determination to see your creativeness pull through with examples of how to do it. Maybe you can add just that very bit extra to your clause.
I for one believe that the more positive we think from a place of love the more it grows and helps to change one soul at a time. If you study the "100 monkeys phenomena" then you will see just how examples can catch on. Since the world has grown into such negativity and it has reached such proportion isnt it time that we need to evaluate ourselves and start thinking positive for ourselves and our furture and for those generations to come to see that we are getting ahead in life.
Another thing i forgot to mention. The media uses fear alot. To be unique i think with fearful topics there needs to be some sort of savior or course of action whereby there is a solution. Rather just letting people know the truth brings about fear but they need to know there is a solution. I noticed with many topics it promotes fear but no solution. This is why the norm cannot accept conspiracy theories as evidence but rather propagates fear in them. Remember people always respond to the cure and the experience of it rather then the fright and flight response.

[edit on 6-5-2009 by Applesandoranges]

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 12:25 AM

Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
Should we (ATS) step into some moderate editorial oversight to better police obviously outlandish topics as well as those who post nothing but negativity?

More policing??? But if you use moderators again, I don't think it would be a good idea. This time you should use ATS Juries, some sort of jury duty for ATS. It's better that way.

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 12:39 AM
I think you should realize - at least from my experience - is that it is not just here. It isn't just on conspiracy sites and it is not just on the web. It is pervasive.

I think some of it, on the conspiracy boards, are actually disinfo agents. I am seeing an increase in people on conspiracy type boards trying to overwhelmingly focus on grammar or constantly posting distracting topics.

I personally appreciate free speech, even if someone is berating me or my intelligence or my mama.

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 12:50 AM
The title of this thread says it all.. "WE MUST END.... CULTURE..."

The last post by SO is a good start but I would say I agree with Jazzy in the post above me on the jury idea.

i would see it going like this:

Member is seen as a troll, identified by people on the board as a troll and spreads negativity. A standard, STOP BEING A TROLL AND LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR U2U would be sent to the offender. Nuff said and done.

U2U would be auto copied to a database and when Xnumber of TROLL U2U's was achievd then another auto U2U would be sent to several mods showing the history of the offender. At that point a vote would be given towards banning or no.

There is no possible way to "end a culture"
You can change it though and I have also noticed a negative vibe growing and have spent less time here and stopped linking to here long ago due to the atitude of plenty of people.

I also like the "Bizzare and Hoaxes" category.. though I would put "Bizarre" first as it would take the automatic stigma people would have upon even stepping into that particular forum.

all I have is a nickel btw so if you have .03, you can keep my .02.


posted on May, 6 2009 @ 01:33 AM
I think its great you as staff asked our opinion on this, wish my boss would do that

IMO... I've been afraid to post what I passionatly feel sometimes because I thought I might offend someone, it's just who I am. Thats the reason, to avoid offenses, I say just that...IMO...or "hey, it's just my opinion." But thats just me, and it probably doesn't always work.

Maybe a "request" link near the "reply" link, where you can request specific items, such as "request warning for continuous off topic posts" for when two or so members really get at each other and derail the entire thread. That can be a real thread killer, and can tend to be where the negativity can get to be an issue. Maybe even require a short description of why you made the request. Don't get me wrong, I think it's important to debate, and feelings can get hurt when talking about passionate beliefs. It's gonna happen, so if you can't deal with it, don't debate. Just don't let those hurt feelings lead to an off topic argument and slander, thats when some sort of user requests would be beneficial.

You guys make the calls, buy why not let us have some sort of "majority request" as well. You could include request for marking a thread as a " hoax", but again a reason should be included, and "this video of these kids saying they saw nine foot aliens is rediculous!" wouldn't be enough to label a thread. A real "hey, thats a known-bs website that posted that article," or something along those lines COULD be with ENOUGH majority. But, its still your decision.

I see how that could be taken advantage of as well, but its just an idea, sort of based on the motivation for this specific thread I'm typing in right now. I don't think more rules would really be an answer, your rules are pretty good now.

Maybe you can do something like that. Maybe you can sort of segment ATS into article based threads, personal experience threads, video based threads, debate threads, or w/e you think would be defining overall thread themes. I don't know how well that would work, and it might change some of the current catagories, but it could guide more users to know what to expect in regards to evidence, opinion, or beliefs discussed.

Just ideas, but hey I wait tables for a living (not a bad job), so what do I know about running a website. And if you already do some of this, well, awesome. I just read the posts and reply here and there, I don't ever look into how to talk to the staff..

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 01:48 AM
reply to post by Karrotz

Notice the "Alert" button at the bottom of each post and at the top of each thread page. These are for letting the mods know you have concerns about something.

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 01:51 AM
I agree with everything youre saying skeptic, it seems there are others who try so hard as to stop people from even going into details about their stories much less sharing good information with others! S&F'd

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 01:51 AM
reply to post by SkepticOverlord

When I saw the thread title, I thought that you were referring to the world - which actually you are, in a way. ATS is a world of its own.

I think that negativity in the world gives rise to all kinds of evil things. A person's mindset is very powerful, so it follows that a group's mindset is even more powerful. I believe that the world's mindset is negative right now, and we should try and change it, starting with ourselves.

This probably of no use to you but I felt the need to express it, thank you.

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 02:21 AM
Spellbound i agree with your thoughts.
Skepticoverlord is the site owner. Which means he created this site. His thoughts as a creator of this site.
Now we are but threads within it. He can choose from whatever mindset whether positive or negative how to run this site right.
Now those who come to this site are furthering this creation of his.
It is up to his creative thinking of how he wants this site to go.
His dreams and aspirations that will make manifest this site.
We are all for positive.
Remember your the best staff on the internet be it

[edit on 6-5-2009 by Applesandoranges]

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 02:55 AM

If you were going to make a Troll Repellent, what would you make it out of?

Browndog62 on May 1, 2008 at 12:13 pm Pixie dust and love. Kill 'em with kindness!

PokkiTokki57 on May 1, 2008 at 8:25 am Trolls. You catch them, kill them, grind them to dust. About one spoonful of that powder into a cup of water should do. They can't stand their own stench.

ryanwareham30 on May 1, 2008 at 12:20 pm Other troll's urine - that way they knew it was "already trolled" and stay away, and the first guy would just assume that anything with his urine had to already have been trolled, and since he's been in so many different areas, he'll just pass by looking for the next 'clean' target.

Internet Trolls- Catch & Release

There are some interesting points on both of those pages in the "negaTroll-tivity" context IMHO.

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 02:56 AM

Originally posted by Springer Maybe those personalities are just much more vocal than the rest of us and therefor seem to be greater in number than they truly are... Maybe that's all there is to this, maybe it isn't.

I would agree that those personalities are more vocal, and with the increase in numbers, the 'noise' to 'signal' ratio is affected. For me it is a question of time... when it gets to a point you have several pages of 'noise' to wade through to get to a decent response ( or intelligent rebuttal) it becomes frustrating.

Recently there was a good thread with Jim Oberg and RF Burns... now THAT was like the good olde days... mades me want to dig up and toss in my material...

Sadly there have been to few of those lately

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 03:14 AM
I am a generational member of an ancient Troll bloodline.

My posting record is fairly good, but occasionally after coming back from the pub I have posted asinine or immature comments. I'm a proponent of 'Stealth-modding'- Those times anyone over-steps the mark the best thing would be a U2U from a mod. The U2U should be some sort of condensed version of the OP on this thread.

To me the most irritating thing is tone. For example, over on medical conspiracies, I disagree with nearly everything that Byrd says, but he is always polite, respectful and friendly, so it's great to debate with him. Other people are sneery and superior and that's annoying as hell. I think mods should be on the lookout for tone over content.

Sidenote: I noticed Sleeper got treated awfully on his threads, even by some of the staff, and would've liked to have seen some intervention there.

[edit on 15f20093amWed, 06 May 2009 03:25:48 -050048 by HiAliens]

posted on May, 6 2009 @ 03:41 AM
reply to post by SkepticOverlord

I entirely agree with the measures.

I still have my reservations, but I hope they work

[edit on 6-5-2009 by 44soulslayer]

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