White board for solutions: Same discussion, different premises
Something I routinely notice is one major breakdown in (virtually) every discussion is people arguing one topic, but are coming in with completely divergent premises. The end result is most threads go in circles and very little is accomplished. Part of the problem is "links" exist to support almost any notion, thus it isn't hard to find a source (which someone with an opposing view will simply discredit, and the going in circles will ensue). This also exists in real life (political debates, discussions with others, etc.) and is not reserved to online communities.
The question becomes:
How does one level the premises (or set some sort of baseline) in a discussion to actually have a beneficial discussion/debate/argument.
How does one reduce the going in circles, as it's not value added? Repeating oneself over and over again doesn't usually convince another he/she is more correct.
I think most of the circle running is due to misunderstanding both premises and points. Some people on the forum are interested in useful debate, others in winning. Those interested in winning aren't interested in understanding. It's more about filtering who you respond to and have long conversations with, than it is about fixing premises. For those of you interested in winning, we all know what winning a debate on the internet is like.
If I appear to be ignoring your posts, it's probably because you are on my ignore list.
Indeed. Some men you just can't reach. So you have to keep them at arm's length... and as Xygonn suggests... be willing to not talk to them, so that they aren't a part of 'your' conversation.
That's what you have to do in other people's threads. But maybe we can have the conversations we want in certain threads, that we maintain and weed like a small garden.
So for OP's who care about their threads... I advocate that they use the mod alert function to cut off avenues of thought that are destructive to the thread's end goal of conversation about a topic.
The “vice of specialization” entails the denial of intellect. “It is a denial because it rests on the superstition that understanding is identical with professional skill. The universal formula is: ‘You cannot understand or appreciate my art (science) (trade) unless you practice it.’ ” - Jacques Barzun
I intentionally left out winning, as there's no point in those discussions (yet many engage in it). I used to believe it was misunderstanding, but when you see the circles people go in, it's almost as though at times, the people are not even reading some of the replies, simply going back and rehashing things already mentioned and reiterating in some more "relevant" factor.
Segmenting quotes: I' used to do this, now I simply only quote a small portion and focus. It seems some people have way too much time to write really long winded replies and to reply to all of it is rarely worth it.
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