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Dennis Campbell
 
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Dennis Campbell
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02 March 2010 03:59
 

I’ve not thought this through completely, at least to my fleeting satisfaction, but I suggest that forum posters be required to post verifiable bio credentials.  As it is, we have assuredly “freedom of speech,” absent any responsibility or accountabllity for whatever is posted.  I’m free to post whatever I wish, but seems to me that in a real world, one in which idiots, true believers, spammers, trolls, or fixated adolescents can post anything, there ought also to be the “courage of our convictions” to stand up as adults behind what we post. 

The basic thought is that we should be willing to post freely, provided that we also show the intregrity and courage to not hide behind some screens or cute names, while attacking whomever we please.  “Sign your name,” means to me that you are willing to hold yourself accountable for what you post under that name.

Due regrets and apologies in advance.  Maybe I’m too tired, old, or otherwise disqualified.  This is a very, to me, so far, a worthwhile forum. RDF died a lousy death, or so it seems.  I’d like to see this forum conrtinue and succeed.  But I suggest that behind any real merit, there needs to be light and accountability.  Otherwise, we’re just engaging in public masturbation with a sheet over our heads.

Long past time I should be off to bed.  So, that’s where I’m going.

Dennis

 
 
nyoki
 
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nyoki
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02 March 2010 05:38
 

I don’t think it will fly, but I get your sentiment.  Even just a couple of years ago, getting your real name and bio on he net was a big no-no, now no one think twice about it.  So, if you check around the intertubalwebz, you ca find my info w/out too much searching.  I was astonished to realize that almost everyone uses their real name on Twitter and facebook.  No longer is there a defintive line between IRL and Online; for me nieces and nephews, he line doesnt exist at all.

 
Jefe
 
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Jefe
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02 March 2010 12:56
 

I believe my profile contains enough information about me to be useful.
I’m wary of revealing my actual name online as I have a fairly public career and don’t wish to have it and my posts here overlap in a negative way.
My avatar is my dog Scratch - who regularly shares his opinions of matters on this website too.  Thus it is as accurate as Dennis’ avatar.

 
 
Dennis Campbell
 
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Dennis Campbell
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02 March 2010 14:26
 
teuchter - 02 March 2010 05:36 AM
Dennis Campbell - 02 March 2010 02:59 AM

I’ve not thought this through completely, at least to my fleeting satisfaction, but I suggest that forum posters be required to post verifiable bio credentials. [:]
Otherwise, we’re just engaging in public masturbation with a sheet over our heads.

Long past time I should be off to bed.  So, that’s where I’m going.

Dennis

I think it is a harsh judgment indeed to denounce Francios Marie Arouet as a public masturbator because he wrote under the nom de plume Voltaire.  Everyone but Hemingway worshiping lagomorph Lapin Lascif would agree that Mr. Clemens wrote the great American novel, even if he cowardly penned it under cover of Mark Twain.  Is Charles Dodgson’s psychedelic trip down the rabbit hole any less enthralling because Alice in Wonderland was credited to the non-existent Lewis Carroll?

And do you accuse Alexander Hamilton, James Madison and John Jay of being besheeted open-air onanists because they published the federalist papers under the false name “Publius?”  I prefer Jefferson and Paine myself, but I think this charge against Mr. Hamilton, the first Secretary of the Treasury, soon to be President Madison, and John Jay, who as governor of New York passed legislation emancipating all African Americans in the state is uncalled for.

And although Karl Marx, writing as Karl Marx, has had a significant impact on the history of the world, do you diminish the significance of Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov because he wrote under the “sheet” of VI Lenin?

And if you find no merit in the works of Voltaire and Twain and Publicus because they are not published under the true names of their authors, do you find that work which is published under the author’s true name to be valuable?  No, you don’t, because you agree with me that if Glenn Beck had his birth certificate tattooed to his forehead, it would not change the deranged nature of his outpourings.  (Bonus fun fact: Michael Savage’s real name is Michael Alan Weiner;  Great Britain won’t let him in under either name.)

I am informed that one cannot judge a book by its cover, and think that one is fully capable of judging a post without need of looking behind the avatar of its author.  I don’t know if Wcollins real name is Simon Pettigrew or W. Collins, but I find his posts pertinent.  Lapin Lascif’s posts are entertaining and pointed whether under the nom de blog Lapin Lascif, Bad Rabbit or Sander. Would Unsmoked’s reveries be more luminous if written under the name of his birth?  (Although we cannot rule out that his name is Larry Unsmoked.)  And I have no hope whatsoever that Goldenhawk or Brother Mario, under any name, could write a cogent and compelling paragraph.

Quite aside from the irrelevance of an author’s name to the quality of the post, many people here work or live under circumstances that would chill their ability to speak freely here if their posts were just one Google search away from neighbors or coworkers.

T., good points all.  I was/am just tired of the KKK quality of too many posters.  Maybe there’s no reasonable way for people to be accountable for their opinions that does not risk a real threat posed to those same people.  Mutter, mutter, damn, my plot foiled again! 

Really do not want to see this forum self-destruct as did RDF(?) because of the depradations of a relative few “KKK” type posters, trolls, and ideological spammers.

 
Dennis

[ Edited: 02 March 2010 14:46 by Dennis Campbell]
 
 
goodgraydrab
 
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goodgraydrab
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02 March 2010 14:47
 
teuchter - 02 March 2010 05:36 AM

Quite aside from the irrelevance of an author’s name to the quality of the post, many people here work or live under circumstances that would chill their ability to speak freely here if their posts were just one Google search away from neighbors or coworkers.

Agree with your post teuchter. As we all know, there are a plethora of whackos in the world. I don’t need to draw them a map of how to get to my house. Also, Miranda Rights comes to mind. Bush was already tapping my phone. One of the main cautions of the internet for young people: “Don’t give them too much, the information stays available forever and could come back to haunt you.” Whether ones real name is revealed or not, it’s the quality of what is said, not who’s saying it.

 
 
eudemonia
 
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eudemonia
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02 March 2010 14:48
 

I don’t really have any credentials, academic or otherwise, so what I have on my bio is about it. We have the PM venue and personal e-mail if anybody is interested in more personal information.

Seriously, if anybody wants to know anything about me just PM me, and we can discuss it. Not that I expect to have caused any curiosity among the faithful here! LOL

i think we should not take this place so seriously and just try to have a good time. Some sarcastic humour at times is fine of course, but….this is not grad school, debate class or an academic adventure I am afraid.

Dennis, you are a retired PHD and I am a self confessed fuckwit. Does that mean I cannot criticize you?

ohh

 
 
ChaosRules
 
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ChaosRules
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02 March 2010 14:49
 

I too understand what you’re saying Dennis, but my reasons align with teucter’s last paragraph and Jefe’s post.  Once I get to “know” someone online enough to trust them, I don’t have an issue sharing my actual name through a private message, but I am loathe to do it openly.

 
Dennis Campbell
 
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Dennis Campbell
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02 March 2010 14:57
 
eudemonia - 02 March 2010 01:48 PM

I don’t really have any credentials, academic or otherwise, so what I have on my bio is about it. We have the PM venue and personal e-mail if anybody is interested in more personal information.

Seriously, if anybody wants to know anything about me just PM me, and we can discuss it. Not that I expect to have caused any curiosity among the faithful here! LOL

i think we should not take this place so seriously and just try to have a good time. Some sarcastic humour at times is fine of course, but….this is not grad school, debate class or an academic adventure I am afraid.

Dennis, you are a retired PHD and I am a self confessed fuckwit. Does that mean I cannot criticize you?

ohh

EUD,

Absolutely not!  No mere peasant can be allowed to sully my robes of elitism. Actually, maybe if someone stole my identity, I could then go and find a better one, as this one is about worn out anyway.

Dennis

 
 
eudemonia
 
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eudemonia
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02 March 2010 15:10
 

LOL! I apologize then Sire Campbell.

I’ll be on my way Sir.

cheese

 
 
Dennis Campbell
 
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Dennis Campbell
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02 March 2010 15:25
 
eudemonia - 02 March 2010 02:10 PM

LOL! I apologize then Sire Campbell.

I’ll be on my way Sir.

cheese

You may rise from your knees with my blessing.  Lucky for you I had a good night’s sleep, else it’d be your head!

Dennis

 
 
nv
 
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nv
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02 March 2010 16:20
 

Dennis, old-timers on this forum know each other fairly well, I suspect. Over the years, most forum writers have revealed all sorts of detail about their private lives, but these facts are embedded in the zillions of posts that have been written. Con artists looking for personal data about most of us here would need to have read many hundreds of thousands of our ornery words to be able to glean anything approaching useful information. If we leave our forum profiles blank, that doesn’t mean that we don’t reveal plenty of interesting things over the years as our conversations unfold. Teuchter is spot on. Why invite trouble? What can be gained for someone to post using their actual name? Who will benefit by it, and how? Some people see paranoia as a survival skill.

I realize you’re a little nuts, Dennis, as you spent your robust early years in warm places like Arizona then perversely moved to Wisconsin for your later years. What the hell? I, as any properly functioning person is expected to do, spent my early years in Wisconsin and New York, and am now playing out my elder time in California, where when my furnace stopped working last December, I told the repair guy, “no big deal—take your time.” How can anyone possibly trust your judgment about anything? (Tongue is in cheek, obviously.)

 
 
Dennis Campbell
 
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Dennis Campbell
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02 March 2010 16:45
 

Nonverbal,

Your diagnosis is hard to deny.  Did try to retire to NE AZ for three years from Wisconsin, but gave it up and came back to the Madison area.  Low property taxes etc in AZ true, but it turns out other nondiscretionary expenses such as property or car insurance more than makes up the difference, and then you’re left with lousy library, medical services or social services and education.  Too simplified, but we’re much more comfortable here, in spite of the lousy winters sometimes.  No place is without some problems or issues, but having lived in five states, and familiar with a lot more, this is the best one for us of that number.

Dennis

 
 
sheba
 
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sheba
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03 March 2010 01:10
 
teuchter - 02 March 2010 05:15 PM
Dennis Campbell - 02 March 2010 01:26 PM

I was/am just tired of the KKK quality of too many posters. Maybe there’s no reasonable way for people to be accountable for their opinions that does not risk a real threat posed to those same people. Mutter, mutter, damn, my plot foiled again!

Really do not want to see this forum self-destruct as did RDF(?) because of the depradations of a relative few “KKK” type posters, trolls, and ideological spammers.


Dennis

This brings us back to the recurring question of administrators or moderators; we seem to generally be resistant to that on this forum, as many people here seem to share my Oppositional Defiance Disorder (not sure what axis that’s on.) There was a discussion of a Greatest Hits thread, with a discussion forum which would be moderated at least to delete off topic posts; I had suggested that as an experiment in administration, that might be worthwhile.

All of which brings to mind a lengthy thread on the Sam Harris Forum, which was more free-wheeling than this forum, which was begun by Immediate Suppression.

Immediate Suppression had posted a theory that a tingling sensation he sometimes felt might a sign of some evidence of some “spirit” external to him, which might somehow hook with other spirits. This suggestion was met with some resistance, and this led him to devise a category of people he called “atheist fundamentalists.” As one might imagine, his “atheist fundamentalist project” met with even more resistance, and this in turn led to this thread on being nice.

Immediate Suppression - 11 November 2008 09:39 PM

There is a pattern of negativity that has consistently infected this forum. I’ve noticed some Freethinkers, Christians, or others are treated condescendingly, and are insulted and derided for being open minded to some of the types of things Sam Harris talks about in his book. It only leads to frustration and polarization for both people, which is not healthy. It also isn’t healthy to insult people, even if it is over the internet. The temporary relief it gives you only leads to more internal stress, and you start a pattern which is difficult to stop, it just leads to more negative behavior which can actually start to show up in how you act when you are not on the internet.

I myself have been guilty of engaging in some personal attack out of retribution for the insults directed towards me, but that is not an excuse, and I will try to avoid it in the future.

This is an Immediate request to all Sam Harris.org members to stop all unnecessary condescending comments, personal smears, or derogatory language directed towards any other members. You are free to disagree with people, but please do it in a civil, respectful manner.

The Sam Harris Forum being the Sam Harris Forum, the very first response was:

Lapin lascif - 11 November 2008 10:16 PM

An immediate request to immediate suppression:


Go fuck yourself.

I thought some pretty funny stuff developed on this thread, but finally decided some sort of plan was needed, and
I proposed this:

teuchter - 14 November 2008 12:16 AM

In the spirit of Rodney “Can’t We All Just Get Along” King, I offer the following RULES FOR USING THIS FORM which will be effective on the earlier of (1) when everyone just does this anyway, or (2) when 3/5 of the States, 2/3 of the Provinces, 1 estade and Denmark ratify these rules.

RULE 1.There are no rules.

RULE 2.Say whatever you want. (I was going to propose “say whatever you think but I thought that might be too constrictive.

RULE 3 If someone responds to your post you
(a) MAY

(1)Ignore the response; or
(2) Reply to the response with evidence and/or argument tending to show either that your original proposition is sound, that the response to which you are replying is devoid of merit, or both.
(b) MAY NOT
(1) Simply restate the proposition addressed by the response, with or without a superficial alteration, or
(2) abruptly change the subject by replying with a non sequitor.

RULE 4 A violation of Rule 3(b)(1) or Rule 3(b)(2) will result in being designated FUCKWIT OF THE MOMENT, and the poster must gird his or her loins, crouch, and prepare for a shitstorm of abuse, insults, and contempt.

Do I have a second?

This forum has proved that my plan was unworkable. A tsunami of abuse, insults and contempt doesn’t seem to phase Goldenhawk or Brother Mario, and I frankly have no idea what it would take to get them to shut the fuck up about their religious certitude.

I just don’t think using our real names will do it.


I think we should all ask ourselves WHY WE ARE HERE. It seems like too many members are here just to engage in fun little fight games. Maybe they are bored or lonely—so the forum seems like a good place to release their frustrations that way. Personal spats cause us to lose track of the original objective and they often escalate into something bitter and toxic to the whole board. When it reaches that point it becomes a indulgence unrelated to any other posters or subject matter offered by the forum, so that should be rejected and stopped. And those kind of people shouldn’t be here -they have no interest Sam’s effort to promote reason.


And what good does using vulgar words ,insulting names, and perpetual sarcasm do ? It isn’t an effort to contribute to the cause of reasonable thinking versus religious dogma etc., but rather,,it is just more personal selfish indulgence. Those kind of people probably can’t get to the corner pub for some reason so they want to see how much fun they can have stirring up a stink or starting an argument on their computers.


And so NOW, after I have been raked over the coals until I have darn near been cooked alive, you decide one poster should not be set up as a target for abuse by a salivating mob ? Well, CONGRATULATIONS , big thinkers !!! BRAVO !! You have some perception after all !! The trouble is : you are late !! You’ve been talking about closing the barn door after the horse has gotten out ! I should shut up right now—words can not express my fury !

 
bigredfutbol
 
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bigredfutbol
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03 March 2010 14:43
 
ChaosRules - 02 March 2010 01:49 PM

I too understand what you’re saying Dennis, but my reasons align with teucter’s last paragraph and Jefe’s post.  Once I get to “know” someone online enough to trust them, I don’t have an issue sharing my actual name through a private message, but I am loathe to do it openly.

Ditto.  I do find that the anonymity of message boards sometimes brings out the worst in people, but we need to handle those situations when they arise.

I’m pretty open with personal info.  I have no problem letting anybody know who I am or where I live.  But, you know, I have a wife and son who live under the same roof I do.  It’s one thing for me to tell the world, or say Woodbridge VA, where I live, “I’m an atheist and I think believing in God is a sign of moral weakness and mental deficiency” and accept the consequences of that statement.  But my 11-year old son lives in the same community, and Middle School is enough of a social jungle without a whole bunch of parents deciding that he’s a bad influence or not someone their kids should associate with.

 
 
Dennis Campbell
 
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Dennis Campbell
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03 March 2010 15:29
 

BRF,

Not argument from me on that.  Do not know how to address issue of “KKK” behavior as I call it, and still have a place where some reasonable sense of safety can be assured.  Still think the application of effective moderation can and should be the case,  Just consigned BM to never-never land, but people like that have no business preaching on this forum, IMO.

Hope your Winter there has not been too bad, read you got globbered recently, as we did in December.  Finally seeing some ground or first time since December.

Dennis

 
 
bigredfutbol
 
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bigredfutbol
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03 March 2010 15:42
 
Dennis Campbell - 03 March 2010 02:29 PM

BRF,

Not argument from me on that.  Do not know how to address issue of “KKK” behavior as I call it, and still have a place where some reasonable sense of safety can be assured.  Still think the application of effective moderation can and should be the case,  Just consigned BM to never-never land, but people like that have no business preaching on this forum, IMO.

Hope your Winter there has not been too bad, read you got globbered recently, as we did in December.  Finally seeing some ground or first time since December.

Dennis

Thanks for your kind words—it was a record-setting winter here, although as a native Nebraskan I snicker a little bit at how readily they close schools around here.  But this last storm was no joke—that was a LOT of snow in a fairly densely populated area, and even after well over a week of above-freezing temps and rain, there’s still some left here and there.  My family and I got off pretty easy—some minor indoor leaking from ice dams in the gutters, and one tree knocked over which didn’t die—I’ve got it propped up now and added some topsoil in an effort to save it.  No major damage, and we never even lost power in our neighborhood.

 
 
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