reply to post by Springer
Seriously? You're upset because the members who have earned the respect of the membership through their excellent research and contributions
or, have proven to be reliable sources of reliable information, are being looked to for their take on a subject?
It's one thing to do as you suggested but it's entirely different to do as some, and blindly take what another member says as absolute proof, even
when that member's facts or research may be wrong. This is often done at the expense of someone else's research, which may be more accurate on the
particular subject at hand. Is it not the goal to get down to the absolute truth, whatever that truth may be, regardless of the implications? It seems
that such a goal would be subverted by placing absolute trust with one person's opinion, statements or research, while ignoring that of everyone
Going even further, it's one thing to accept someone's research without verification, while it is entirely different to accept someone's research
without verification and then argue against others based upon that unverified research. In other words, they claim that others are wrong, based solely
on the fact that someone has a conflicting answer with the member they entrust, as in: "Member-X said 'xyz' so you are clearly wrong for saying
I have personally seen on couple of occasions, where people will accept as fact the flawed research of another member based solely upon their view of
that member, without checking up on the "science" stated by the member they are entrusting and often causing them to ignore the research and
opinions of others, even when that research may be more accurate.
While I agree with you that there is nothing wrong with valuing the intelligent research of particular members and quite possibly holding a bias
towards their research, I believe that the research should be verified before accepting it as fact. There are many members whose research I value and
I will often go to threads in which they comment to gleam information posted by them, however I will never except their word as fact and without
verification, just because of who they are and I will certainly never ignore the valuable research of others just because it may conflict with the
research of someone I trust, to include my own. What's wrong with holding judgment until research can be verified?
For instance, many members will call on "Member-X" in a thread, only to accept what "Member-X" states as fact, even when "Member-X" turns out to
be wrong on that particular subject. Then, the mindset of "well 'Member-X' said 'this and that', so 'this and that' must be fact and everyone
else is wrong", even when others may have more accurate answers. They are then arguing someone else's point forward, even though they have no idea
how accurate that point may be.
To me, there is a difference between valuing someone's research and blindly entrusting what they say as absolute fact, while ignoring the research of
everyone else. Even if the intentions are good, the results may not be. Everyone is going to be wrong sometimes, so blindly accepting someone's
research as fact, without any kind of verification on behalf of the member in question, is only propagating ignorance ( or has the potential to do
I see this carried out in the real world as well, most often with political pundits. Pundits seem to hook people by gaining their trust, then the
followers of these pundits seem to take everything they say as fact, while ignoring the truth or whole truth. It gets to a point where the pundits
could say the most outlandish things, yet instead of thinking on their own, people tend to buy what is said by the pundits as absolute truth. We all
know where political punditry has carried us and how it allows certain people to get away with murder (quite literally), while the masses stay in
their stupor. Obviously, the implications of this mindset on ATS is not nearly as grave as that of the world at large but it is the same kind of
mindset that has steered our society into the corner in which we currently find ourselves.
[edit on 11-7-2010 by airspoon]