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Achilles 04-25-2008 09:50 PM

I hope this is the right place
 
Continued from here.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
Mod note:
I prefer to believe that strongly polarizing topics like this can still be discussed without resorting to ad hominem tactics

Since I was quite specific in pointing out that we're discussing behavior (rather than characteristics) I'm struggling to understand how "ad hominem" is relevant. No disparaging comments or personal attacks have been made about any of the individuals participating in that thread.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
...even indirect ones finely veiled behind big words. :)

If there is a problem with using specific terminology, or "big words" as you called them, then perhaps it would be best to amend the forum rules so that no further infractions occur.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
The meaning behind telling someone directly they are an "idiot" or telling them they are "intellectually challenged" is pretty much the same, even if the approach is less direct and blunt.

I appreciate you sharing your interpretation of the term, as well as your opinion about how you feel it has been applied here.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
It's a flame bait either way, even if it wasn't intended as such when posted.

I acknowledge that SWK staff has decided to include the term "intellectually dishonest" in its list of "forbidden words".

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
Everyone, please try to avoid making negative personal remarks or reflections about people whose opinions you don't agree with while posting here.

Quite right.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
Making the arguments personal makes these threads less interesting to read and more likely to get out of hand and locked.

Thanks. :)

Right on the money once again. Thanks for your post.

jonathan7 04-25-2008 10:41 PM

I hope this is the right place
 
If I may, it would seem to me that this some what involves me, so I may as well add my 2 cents; there are summed up here; http://www.lucasforums.com/showpost....&postcount=406

It was not my opinion at the time, nor now that Achilles post was a personal attack, nor his intetion to call me, or anyone else 'stupid'.

However, I think some may have read it as such and considered it discourtious. I did not consider it so, however it is in the juristiction of the moderators; and ultimatly they arbitrate as to what should and should not be said.

Peace... :)

Achilles 04-26-2008 12:03 AM

As was the case with Stoffe, I appreciate you sharing your opinion on the matter. Unfortunately, it seems that the status quo is going to be that some opinions are more important than others, especially if that opinion is held by a member of the SWK staff. Doesn't mean you're right. It just means that you get to make the rules.

Achilles 04-26-2008 12:23 AM

Yet, somehow, here we are :)

Achilles 04-26-2008 01:06 AM

Only that a heavy dose of "opinion" was necessary to wiggle around to a point where the accusation of a forum rules violation could be made. If she has an opinion and you have an opinion and I have an opinion and all those opinions are on equal footing, then we should be able to have a lovely chat rather than moderators arbitrarily deciding what things mean.

However, the tone of the note suggests that Stoffe has decided (based on her opinion) that the comment was an ad hominem. She's also decided (based on her opinion) that I was somehow disingenuous with my comments. And finally she's decided (based on her opinion) that term used means what she's decided (based on her opinion) it's going to mean.

If the SWK staff wants to outlaw the use of the term "intellectual dishonesty" from Kavar's all you guys have to do is say so. Trying to prop the decision up with a lot of erroneous arguments simply makes it difficult for me to understand what the rules are.

tk102 04-26-2008 01:42 AM

What I see here is case where words were used that were received in a manner different than their intention. I think jonathan7's post above is evidence of this. Some may have viewed the term "dishonest" as a the being the equivalent to "liar" and therefore an ad hominem. I believe Achilles may have been using a short hand way of expressing disregard to illogical arguments that he believes are being presented as logic, or that arguer may not wish to acknowledge as illogical. In this sense, the term may not be intended as an ad hominem attack.

The problem here however is that Jae Onasi did construe this as a personal attack. And now we have this thread to address the misunderstanding. This could've been handled within the Kavar's thread if either party would've taken steps to communicate their intended/perceived feelings over the issue. Achilles, you could have expanded your reasoning for why you felt an presenting an argument in a certain was "intellectually dishonest" or pointed back to previous posts for clarification, or you could have gone out of your way a little to explain how you didn't intend this to be an ad hominem attack. Like Jae, you could have questioned the reason for using such wording or explained why you felt the wording was personally aggressive.

In this matter, stoffe, was responding to a reported post and took action to address the issue and call for ending hostilities (perceived or actual), which is precisely what a moderator should do. Following her post would've been a good time for clarifying the intent of "intellectually dishonesty" but I've already "woulda-coulda-shoulda" enough here. :p

It's worth remembering that the intended purpose of Kavar's Corner is to engage in friendly discussions. If all parties keep this in mind and try to maintain compassion towards each other without looking down on the other, I believe these issues will resolve themselves naturally without escalation.

As for the topic of this thread, the answer is yes. This is the right place. :)

stoffe 04-26-2008 07:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Achilles
Since I was quite specific in pointing out that we're discussing behavior (rather than characteristics) I'm struggling to understand how "ad hominem" is relevant. No disparaging comments or personal attacks have been made about any of the individuals participating in that thread.

Whether or not it was intended as such it was seen as offensive by several other readers of that thread. Looking up the meaning of "dishonest" in a dictionary (disposed to lie, cheat, or steal; not worthy of trust or belief; fraudulent) I don't find it hard to see why it could be perceived as such.

At any rate it was a generally aimed nudge, not a warning to a particular person, intended to remind people that you can discuss a subject without discussing the moral or mental character of the person you are discussing it with. The quoted phrase was what we've received reports about as being considered specifically offensive by several other members.

I've got no agenda other than to try to have people act in a civil manner and treat each other with basic respect when they post on the SWK forums. I've got no personal grudges or indeed any close involvement with the participants in that thread. I was merely responding to reports that the tone in a thread was starting to slide in the wrong direction.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Achilles
If there is a problem with using specific terminology, or "big words" as you called them, then perhaps it would be best to amend the forum rules so that no further infractions occur.

There is nothing in the rules saying that someone may belittle others as long as they aren't blunt and direct about it. I fail to see what you are referring to here. A sugar coated insult is still an insult.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Achilles
I appreciate you sharing your interpretation of the term, as well as your opinion about how you feel it has been applied here.

It was an example of the type of indirect language I was speaking of in the previous paragraph.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Achilles
I acknowledge that SWK staff has decided to include the term "intellectually dishonest" in its list of "forbidden words".

Please don't quote me out of context and ascribe new meaning to what I was writing.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Achilles
Only that a heavy dose of "opinion" was necessary to wiggle around to a point where the accusation of a forum rules violation could be made.

If there was a violation of the forum rules a warning would have been edited into the offending post(s).

Quote:

Originally Posted by Achilles
However, the tone of the note suggests that Stoffe has decided (based on her opinion) that the comment was an ad hominem.

Several members of the forum reported that the thread was starting to get personal. My personal opinion formed from reading through the reported posts was that it was not unreasonable to interpret it as such. But that there was nothing in sufficient violation of the rules to warrant any other action than a quick nudge to remind people not to steer further in that direction. Sometimes it's better to be proactive than reactive with these matters.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Achilles
She's also decided (based on her opinion) that I was somehow disingenuous with my comments.

Given that the post was not aimed at you, but was rather a general nudge aimed at everyone participating in the thread, I fail to see how you would arrive at that conclusion.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Achilles
And finally she's decided (based on her opinion) that term used means what she's decided (based on her opinion) it's going to mean.

I am not a native English speaker, I can only go by the meaning of words and phrases that can be found dictionaries, and as explained by people who do speak English. Several other, presumably english speaking, members found its use offensive enough to warrant reporting or mentioning.

This is not about microanalyzing particular words and phrases though. It's about a general tone when posting, and being civil to fellow members when discussing topics that people have heated opinions about. If the use of specific language has been misunderstood or misinterpreted, fair enough, but that's how other readers of the thread perceived it.

Achilles 04-26-2008 01:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
Whether or not it was intended as such it was seen as offensive by several other readers of that thread. Looking up the meaning of "dishonest" in a dictionary (disposed to lie, cheat, or steal; not worthy of trust or belief; fraudulent) I don't find it hard to see why it could be perceived as such.

You're focusing on the "word" dishonest, rather than the term "intellectual dishonesty". Yes, the word "dishonest" could be taken as a personal slight, especially if directed at an individual. The term "intellectual dishonesty" is a bit of stretch, especially since I was emphatic that I was addressing general behavior rather than an individual's characteristics. That was my point.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
At any rate it was a generally aimed nudge, not a warning to a particular person, intended to remind people that you can discuss a subject without discussing the moral or mental character of the person you are discussing it with.

Except the term I was using did neither, hence my confusion over the need for the post.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
The quoted phrase was what we've received reports about as being considered specifically offensive by several other members.

I understand that. All I was saying is that since the perceived offense stemmed from a misunderstanding about what was actually being said, I would hope that matter would be up for discussion rather than decided arbitrarily.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
I've got no agenda other than to try to have people act in a civil manner and treat each other with basic respect when they post on the SWK forums. I've got no personal grudges or indeed any close involvement with the participants in that thread. I was merely responding to reports that the tone in a thread was starting to slide in the wrong direction.

Understood. No one can fault you for doing your job :)

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
There is nothing in the rules saying that someone may belittle others as long as they aren't blunt and direct about it. I fail to see what you are referring to here. A sugar coated insult is still an insult.

Except that this isn't what happened here. I get that someone misunderstood what was being said and took offense, but no insult (sugar coated or otherwise) was made. I'm perfectly willing to acknowledge that a misunderstanding occurred and move on, however if you're going to insist that I said something that I didn't, then I'm going to be inclined to continue defending myself.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
It was an example of the type of indirect language I was speaking of in the previous paragraph.

I hope I addressed this adequately above.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
Please don't quote me out of context and ascribe new meaning to what I was writing.

I've been "asked" in the past not to use specific terms because members of the staff didn't like them. If I jumped the gun in assuming that this was happening a second time, then I apologize for doing so.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
If there was a violation of the forum rules a warning would have been edited into the offending post(s).

And if a potential violation of the forum rules hadn't been perceived then a "nudge" wouldn't have been required :)

Somebody somewhere felt that some rule was in danger of being violated. I was merely trying to figure out which one. :)

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
Several members of the forum reported that the thread was starting to get personal. My personal opinion formed from reading through the reported posts was that it was not unreasonable to interpret it as such. But that there was nothing in sufficient violation of the rules to warrant any other action than a quick nudge to remind people not to steer further in that direction. Sometimes it's better to be proactive than reactive with these matters.

Indeed. But the thread wasn't getting personal. I have no doubt one or more people felt it was (or else we wouldn't be here :)), however my concern was that some opinions were going to be considered more important than others when discussing whether or not an actual infraction took place.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
Given that the post was not aimed at you, but was rather a general nudge aimed at everyone participating in the thread, I fail to see how you would arrive at that conclusion.

Regardless of whether you intended to or not, you did mischaracterize my statements by arbitrarily assigning an intention to that term. Considering that I was being very cautious to specify that I was not addressing individuals, your comment that this was happening undermined my efforts not to offend.

Perhaps a more specific nudge would have helped to single out the individual(s) you were concerned about.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
I am not a native English speaker, I can only go by the meaning of words and phrases that can be found dictionaries, and as explained by people who do speak English. Several other, presumably english speaking, members found its use offensive enough to warrant reporting or mentioning.

Fair enough. For whatever it's worth, I've always thought your English is excellent :D

Understanding that people sometimes don't understand the meaning of terms in their own language, hopefully you can see that I was questioning the rationale of the argument being made rather than your understanding of the language (though clearly now I can see how you were only going off what you were told, rather than making a leap in reasoning yourself. My apologies).

From my perspective, this issue occurred because someone took issue with the word "banana". You're trying to address the perceived issue, while I'm trying to figure out how someone got offended over the use of the word "banana" (and why the staff is issuing nudges about not offending people). I hope that helps to clarify my position on the matter.

Quote:

Originally Posted by stoffe
This is not about microanalyzing particular words and phrases though. It's about a general tone when posting, and being civil to fellow members when discussing topics that people have heated opinions about. If the use of specific language has been misunderstood or misinterpreted, fair enough, but that's how other readers of the thread perceived it.

I understand. I can only take responsibility for what I post. I cannot take responsibility for how others perceive what I say. Most of the people that I converse with in Kavar's are educated people, so I've never felt as though I've needed to "dumb down" my language in order to be understood. My hope is that if I say something or use a term that is unfamiliar that they would either try to learn about the term themselves or ask me what I meant rather than jump to conclusions.

I do appreciate you taking the time to respond and clarify your position. Take care, Stoffe :)

Achilles 04-28-2008 10:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
I had received 3 or 4 IMs and PMs discussing not just the 'intelectually dishonest' comment but also the 'pretend to know' series of comments in another post.

Okay. If I'm being encouraged not to use those term, then I need to understand why. If it's nothing more than "we've decided that we don't like them", then that's fine but let's not prop it up as something it's not. That's where things get murky.

This is similar to the whole "formal debate" issue that no one has been able to adequately answer for me.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
I would like to know why the forum should conform to your need (or others--this isn't limited to you) to be blunt to the point where we receive complaints.

I don't recall arguing that anything should conform to me. Also, if you think I've been blunt, then I think we should probably have a discussion about what "blunt" really looks like. I'm guessing that what you really want is for me to be non-controversial, which is something else entirely.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
If the consensus of the group here is that they want the standard of courtesy to be high, should you not be adjusting you style to the group rather than the other way around?

Up this point, I have not received any warnings indicating that I have not. Do you and I have something we need to discuss via PM?

Do any of the rest of us get to have a say in what "high standards of courtesy" look like or will you continue to define that as we go along?

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
If you can't, the Senate has and certainly will continue to welcome your many contributions. If you can adjust and maintain your intellectual integrity (and I would be stunned if you said you couldn't), then is there some compelling reason why you've chosen that your needs outweigh that of the group's?

I wonder how your peers feel about how dismissive you are with their areas of responsibility.

On-topic: Since I haven't been furnished with a warning, Jae, I'm only left to guess at what you're referring to. The entire purpose of this thread has been to discover what the problem was. The nudge has been retracted and mediation has been offered, yet here you are continuing to insinuate there's an issue. So is there a problem or not?

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
Thanks.

You're quite welcome. Thank you.

Achilles 04-28-2008 11:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
How about 'because it's not polite'?

Again, we come back to opinion and my earlier question: are all opinions going to be given equal weight or will some be considered more "equal" than others?

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
Making negative implications about someone's level of honesty or intelligence is rude.

Right, except that never happened. So I'm struggling to understand the relevance of your point. I really do get that you're having difficulty distinguishing between a comment about *someone* and a comment about *behavior*, but I promise you there really is a difference.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
You don't need to make those kinds of comments to prove your point.

Comments that include specific terminology? Again, Jae, I'm trying to understand the specific point of contention here. I believe that tk102 has already tried to point out that perhaps you're thinking the term means something other than what it does. How much further out of proportion are we going to blow a misunderstanding about terms?

I have absolutely no problem trying to meet you half way on this, but I think you'll need to not be on-the-attack first.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
If you're just wanting to, then be up front about it instead of trying to couch it as 'I'm not understanding what rude is'.

I don't recall making that statement :confused:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
I can certainly forgive, but I'm not a complete idiot.

No warning then? Then I'm not sure what you're trying to tell me.

Jae Onasi 04-29-2008 12:31 AM

My apologies. I deleted my comments.

Darth333 04-29-2008 12:04 PM

It's time to cool down and that applies to everyone.

I understand that there might be disagreements and that not everyone has the same degree of sensitivity but is it really necessary to start throwing knives at each other over a so small issue? This isn't going anywhere. At one point, some things have to be left behind...

No warnings were issued here. However, whether you agree or disagree with the context, the intent of stoffe's reminder in the thread wasn't a bad one...it can also be summarized to 3 words: keep it friendly :) We are trying to make Kavar a welcoming place for everyone, no matter the age (well 13+ ), the origin or backround and thus encourage friendly discussion...at the same time, that doesn't mean that you cannot express your opinions and discuss/challenge others opinions.

I think that what had to be said has been said and instead of arguing ad nauseam in this thread, the issue will be discussed in private. If there are rule modifications to be made for the future, people will be informed accordingly.

@ Achilles and other regular members: if you have further comments/suggestions on the issue, feel free to send me or any other staff member a PM.

:lock:


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