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scrottie (4167)

scrottie
  scott@slowass.net
http://slowass.net/

My email address is scott@slowass.net. Spam me harder! *moan*

Journal of scrottie (4167)

Wednesday December 13, 2006
01:59 PM

What you need to understand before commenting in my blog

[ #31900 ]

Adapted from a reply to a reply:

Yes, I am a jerk. That's beside the point and was the subject of a previous post. Yes, I would have hobbled over to a Windows machine if I were at home -- I thoroughly outlined why that wasn't an option in this case. Again, the subject of the article was the clash and my notes from brainstomring remedies. You were trying to be funny or empathetic -- fine, but you'll enjoy more success here and other places that loathe the Slashdot mindset if you comment with a demonstration of understanding of the article you're commenting on and a willingness to accept the premises it outlines, explain your differening conclusions, add pespective, and generally, stay on subject. You did the opposite. You dismissed the situation and took it to a lower common demoniminator. Here's a real-life example. If you come across a conversation where people are talking about their two favorite teams, and enjoying their detailed conversation, you don't jump in and say "I don't like baseball". Perhaps someone else will wander up in middle of the new disucussion about whether baseball is likeable and comment that "sports are dumb". And then this degenerates into a conversation about how dumb each person is based on some arbitrarily formula instituted from the irrefutability of the previous assertion: sports are dumb, therefore, if you like sports, you must be dumb. Imagine the pain of the two original participants. The joining the conversation in this example are not participating in the conversation, but instead hijacking it with something far less interesting to the participants. The very thing they say is in itself a refusal to talk about the subject until their unsolvable replacement debate is solved, so progress is only backwards, to the less specific, more heavily covered topics, and away from the intricacies.

Small minded buffoons systematically use these tactics to appear of some intelligence to the casual observer who only notes that they've become an active part of the disucssion and apparently "won" on a few points not noticing it's at the expense of the overall conversation. One of the many tools used is refuting an incidental or exploritory part of the debate and then setting forth an argument that's irrefutable because it's based in opinion, a hand-picked and isolated example, a bit of circular logic, or something similarly immune to its own tactics. This is obnoxious. Pretending to out argue by attacking a non-essential point and then moving on as if the entire argument had been unraveled is pointless unless the goal is to hijack the conversation. Moving the conversation from an earnest discussion to a battle of opinions is worse.

And the fact that there are no other participants but myself in this conversation is something I'm already aware of. And yes, I'm fully aware that I'm lecturing you on how to comment on a blog. Looking at the hoardes of people on Slashdot missing these subtleties suggests to me that I do in fact need to be vigilant. I'm also aware you'll probably consider this an affront. It's not my attention to offend -- not in this note. I only readily offend as I see no other option. The previous note had a goal of offending as a way of chasing you off. If you can by some miracle look past that and then decide to honor my demands for comments on my blog, and then I will welcome your comments.

-scott