Freedom of speech

vbimport

#1

Freedom and liberty at best can be illusions as democracy can never be perfect, equality can never be complete, and humans cannot ever reach sanity, negotiate reason, and find enough about themselves.

I used to say there’s no freedom of speech and so I could say little on the web, none of the things that I really think. I can’t say that for other countries. Colonies and slaves under Rome and Maya both seem to have enjoyed some degrees of freedom of speech. And some had the means to preserve for posterity. Edmund Burke and Alexis de Tocquevile both survived long enough to write books that contained ideas and opinions unfashionable enough to lead the authors to instant deaths in most other civilizations. People unafraid of death after years of torture can perform miracles because they are what casual people fear most and people in fear are the easiest targets for manipulation.

Sometimes I thought to myself people of courage and integrity should have died during times of revolutions and civil wars and in between. If that were true, survivors and their descendents would be criminals against the progress of justice and welfare for all, and corrupt and compromised at best. It was easy to conclude the only kind of honorable life’s killing oneself in the kamikaze style for some grand worthy cause. That was the core of Confucianism during the years I was grown up in the 1970s and 1980s.

Things looked better as prosperity was spreading and technologies were empowering individuals. But I still sense there are people who die premature death, for the wrong reasons, which result in little progress. People who notice such deaths tend to fear more, take more efforts to please those who can influence mass opinion to make life for some untolerable to impossible or commit outright assassinations. It may look absurd to talk about the deaths of some thousands of people in a land more than ten million were killed on similar backgrounds since the conclusion of last major world war. It may be a mere mutation on an isolated land long labelled as hermet kingdom, or it may be the common fate of all or most societies not lucky enough to reach consent of every power factor so as to allow mass self-deception to last forever.


#2

I don’t see a reason to say much in a thread you start.

You insinuated that what I posted in the US Shutdown thread had already got it closed . That was your & the last comment before the moderater closed the thread.

I think you put in your 2 cents & then complained about the thread to get it closed.
That certainly limited my freedom of speech.

The reason stated that it was because it had become not technology related.
The thread never was technology related . It was the kind of thread that was going to generate political views form the start.

Are the members supposed to complain about any thread that is not technology related ? To the point that all such threads are closed. Even ones that start technology related but go off topic for a bit. All of us realize that happens & that is part of what makes this forum interesting . [B]Of course I don’t want that & neither do most members.[/B]

It is almost always stated similar to this;

there are many avenues in which to discuss this other than this, a Technology forum

While there may be political sites where this could be discussed as stated.
What a person would get at those sites are the opinions of people that are really into only politics.
When a member like myself that primaly uses this forum wants is: The opinions of people he is used to posting with here. So there are not other avenues for this .

The members here would all have to go to the same political forum & use the same user names for that to be possible . Then they would need to check that forum often enough to participate. That would take traffic away from this forum .
[B]In reality that is not going to happen[/B].

So there’s some free speech .Whether the first amendment of the US Constitution applies in this forum or not.


#3

[QUOTE=cholla;2703182]
You insinuated that what I posted in the US Shutdown thread had already got it closed . That was your & the last comment before the moderater closed the thread.

I think you put in your 2 cents & then complained about the thread to get it closed.
That certainly limited my freedom of speech.[/quote]The thread was already heading for closure after less than a page of replies. I believe olyteddy replied to keep the thread on-track, but it never returned to the original topic.

Are the members supposed to complain about any thread that is not technology related ? To the point that all such threads are closed. Even ones that start technology related but go off topic for a bit. All of us realize that happens & that is part of what makes this forum interesting . [B]Of course I don’t want that & neither do most members.[/B]
Members can complain, but usually decisions to close a thread don’t come from complaints. Many threads go off-topic and remain open quite fine, but…sometimes we can see things going in a bad direction with no hopes of returning.

It is almost always stated similar to this;

While there may be political sites where this could be discussed as stated.
What a person would get at those sites are the opinions of people that are really into only politics.
When a member like myself that primaly uses this forum wants is: The opinions of people he is used to posting with here. So there are not other avenues for this .

The members here would all have to go to the same political forum & use the same user names for that to be possible . Then they would need to check that forum often enough to participate. That would take traffic away from this forum .
[B]In reality that is not going to happen[/B].

So there’s some free speech .
Right. And we acknowledge all of this. There are simply times when it appears that the topic has flown out of the window and won’t be making a return. (Sometimes there’s also a loss of respect, which will make the problem even worse).

Asking for an opinion is fine. Replying to an opinion can be fine. It’s when the replies begin to build on one another and go haywire, where people begin leapfrogging from one topic to another, where it’s hard to follow the thread anymore…that’s when trouble starts.


#4

[QUOTE=cholla;2703182]I don’t see a reason to say much in a thread you start.

You insinuated that what I posted in the US Shutdown thread had already got it closed . That was your & the last comment before the moderater closed the thread.

I think you put in your 2 cents & then complained about the thread to get it closed.
That certainly limited my freedom of speech.

The reason stated that it was because it had become not technology related.
The thread never was technology related . It was the kind of thread that was going to generate political views form the start.

Are the members supposed to complain about any thread that is not technology related ? To the point that all such threads are closed. Even ones that start technology related but go off topic for a bit. All of us realize that happens & that is part of what makes this forum interesting . [B]Of course I don’t want that & neither do most members.[/B]

It is almost always stated similar to this;

While there may be political sites where this could be discussed as stated.
What a person would get at those sites are the opinions of people that are really into only politics.
When a member like myself that primaly uses this forum wants is: The opinions of people he is used to posting with here. So there are not other avenues for this .

The members here would all have to go to the same political forum & use the same user names for that to be possible . Then they would need to check that forum often enough to participate. That would take traffic away from this forum .
[B]In reality that is not going to happen[/B].

So there’s some free speech .Whether the first amendment of the US Constitution applies in this forum or not.[/QUOTE]

:clap::clap::clap::clap::clap:


#5

[QUOTE=Albert;2703189]
Right. And we acknowledge all of this. There are simply times when it appears that the topic has flown out of the window and won’t be making a return. (Sometimes there’s also a loss of respect, which will make the problem even worse).

Asking for an opinion is fine. Replying to an opinion can be fine. It’s when the replies begin to build on one another and go haywire, where people begin leapfrogging from one topic to another, where it’s hard to follow the thread anymore…that’s when trouble starts.[/QUOTE]

I have suggested many times that this site create a place where established members can have controversial discussions. Access to this section would be limited to only members who have spent a specified period of time here and/or achieved a certain post count. It would be a great solution and I have seen this employed successfully on many other forums.


#6

[warning: rant coming]

We all have the capacity to reply to any thread as we choose. Sometimes the replies stir up a bit of dust. That’s fine; that’s expected.

But there are times when a reply to a thread does nothing to return the thread to the original topic. The reply does nothing to meaningfully stimulate polite (or at least amicable) actions between members. There are times when the reply is meant to do nothing but incite some sort of fury.

Even if a reply is not meant to incite fury, it is absolutely necessary to think about what might happen. Who might reply. How they might reply. And you have to be prepared to reply with a level head and with a level of decorum that makes you, the user, look good.

At the same time, we must make sure that our replies make the site a welcoming environment for the people who love to come here as much as I know we all do!

So there is rarely a problem of free speech, at least on this site; no, no, the problem is the environment that we see being created. An environment that is acidic in any way, shape, form or fashion is not of our desire. An environment where we cannot expect to have rational discussion is not of our desire. More importantly, we can see that the majority of the members do not desire a negative environment.

But y’know, I think there is something that could help out: making use of private messages: I don’t know how often people use private messages. There could be quite a few meaningful conversations going on behind the scenes and the rest of us would never know any differently. I personally encourage the use of private messages; that way, you can ask someone “Hey, what was your thought process when you wrote this? I want to understand you better.” …To be honest, [I][B]an attempt to understand others should be paramount no matter how you converse with them[/B][/I], but a private message will allow you to deal one-on-one with a person and makes it easier to separate what you want to say from what others are saying. This way, there might be fewer miscommunications.

But what do I know? I’m only one person, and this is only my opinion. But I think we can all get along around here much better if we work on communicating better. Until we communicate better, no amount of extra forums/subforums/private messages/areas of restricted access will make things better, because the problem will still exist.


#7

[QUOTE=UTR;2703194]I have suggested many times that this site create a place where established members can have controversial discussions. Access to this section would be limited to only members who have spent a specified period of time here and/or achieved a certain post count. It would be a great solution and I have seen this employed successfully on many other forums.[/QUOTE]

I second this if it helps.

Appreciate the applause UTR from your first post.

@ Albert , Thanks for answering.
To me the reason olyteddy posted for the close didn’t make sense to me.
Maybe it did to him. It also changed from the first reason. So a bit confusing.

I don’t want to discuss every detail of a closed thread here.
I would do that by PM with olyteddy. If I felt there was a further need.


#8

And this is an appropriate place for [I]this[/I] discussion (unless the living room moderators disagree). The US shut down thread started as a news item which was fine. However, rather than discuss the impact of it (particularly in the tech sector) it was sliding into a game of mudslinging and finger pointing. The republicans caused it…no, it was the Dems…no wait ObamaCare…oh it was the teabag party…
[I]This was exactly what I had warned against in my first post of that thread.[/I] :cop:

EDIT: And I second the notion of a subscription only sub-forum where (almost) anything goes. :flower:

EDIT2: Although there are few restrictions on accessing the data on this forum it is still a private property and as such is subject to rules. Much like a Restaurant can have a ‘No shirt, No shoes, No service’ policy.


#9

I wouldn’t have any idea how the shutdown impacts the tech sector.
I suppose it might effect tech sector stock prices.
Some tech sector government employees will probably be furloughed but if you follow the shutdown . They only lose the pay for now once the shutdown is resolved all furloughed employees get back pay. That’s a reason I don’t see the furlough as anything but a scare tactic. I doesn’t save a cent.

Obamacare is completly revelant to that thread. It is the main reason cited by both parties if you follow this on the news. Most Republicans (in Congress) want to modify Obamacare before approving a national debt increase . Most Democrats (in Congress) want Obamacare unchanged . The US shutdown is primarily about Obamacare. It also involes the actions of both parties . So how can this be discussed without those parties being blamed ? One way or another.
The answer is it can’t.

What Kenshin didn’t like were some of my solutions to cut the US debt in other ways . One of those would have removed the US military from Korea ( although I posted this for all countries). The US citizens who are paying for the US military have no real responsibility to provide a military for other nations. I could be incorrect but I don’t know of anything the US has done to stop South Korea from building a military as large or larger than North Korea’s . The same for buying & building equipment for that military . South Korea just decided it would be a lot cheaper to have the US citizens pay fo it & spend their own taxes on other things.
[B]This applies to most other countries that the US military is in[/B]. There are exceptions like Japan & Germany . Where at one time the Allies (not just the US) prevented those countries from having a military.

US citizens have lost their lives in Korea in the thousands & spent billions of dollars. If the US had never done this & called on South Korea to send the same amount of military & money to the US for our use .Maybe needing to borrow money from China. Becoming the most indebted nation in the world in the process What would Korea’s reply be ?
I think it would be NO .
This also applies to a lot of other countries.

My point both is & was. The US is at a point where it needs to shutdown . The US no longer has the money to be the world military or police . IMO the US should never have taken this role.

How can this not be true;
If the US is the most in debt nation on Earth . How can the US not also be the poorest nation on Earth?

When do the other countries the US has helped with both lives of US citizens(military & sometime civilians) & money start paying it back ? To the point the US is no longer in debt.


#10

The concept of freedom of speech is enjoyed by most people.
However, freedom of speech does not mean you can just say anything you like without having to face the consequences of what you may say.

example:
You can challenge the validity of a law, but plot to break the law, and you will end up in trouble.

example 2:
Call someone in the street an idiot, and they are likely to lash out at you.
Yet on the internet and a forum like this, some people think they can say what they like, upset other people, and think they can get away with it. When sanctioned, they play the ‘freedom of speech’ card. :slight_smile:

Regarding a special political forum where anything goes?

[B]I don’t think so.[/B] It would never work, and I would strongly oppose it. There are many reasons why I would oppose it, but one reason is obvious.
People wouldn’t leave their grievances in that special forum, it would spill out into open forum.

Lastly.
The thread heading is ‘freedom of speech’, so keep the thread on topic. Don’t try and continue a grievance from a closed thread in this one.
I will not allow it.


#11

[QUOTE=Dee;2703222]Regarding a special political forum where anything goes?

[B]I don’t think so.[/B] It would never work, and I would strongly appose it. There are many reasons why I would appose it, but one reason is obvious.
People wouldn’t leave their grievances in that special forum, it would spill out into open forum.[/QUOTE]

This very system works well in many forums. I personally think it works better than what is going on here now. I have seen some great, and thoughtful, debates happen in these type of sections. Also, people know going into that section they need to have some thicker skin. If they can’t handle it tastefully then take away their privileges to frequent that forum on a temporary basis.

IMO, this is a much better approach than the haphazard and inconsistent manner that these types of discussions are currently dealt with now.


#12

IMO.
The alternative to what we have at the moment is to ban political debate completely, which for your information I’m opposed to.

The problem from history here on this forum is.
Political threads here always end up closed, because people just can’t help themselves from hitting below the belt.


#13

… and therein lies the conundrum. The genie is either in or out of the bottle on political/social discussion, IMO. Ban political/social topics or give them a place to happen in a manner that lets those that wish to discuss such matters a means to do so. The way it is currently being handled is inconsistent and makes people feel they have been unjustly cut off in a thread. What you and I are doing right now is a good example of debating two differing viewpoints on a topic we both have strong opinions toward. My instinctive expectation is that this thread will soon be locked just because the discussion is a little passionate.

Setting up a controversial forum could be tried on a trial basis or just put it up to a vote of the members. No one is forced to join in on the discussion there and people that wish to not participate won’t even know what topics are discussed if they never request permission to access that section. Otherwise, this will be an ongoing problem for this forum, in general, and a constant source of agitation between the management and a portion of the users.


#14

Maybe someone can point out where the closed thread actually violated the [B]Political Discussion Rules[/B] .
I saw one post that contained what some possibly bad language .
Even that wasn’t aimed at a forum member but at some politician I guess.
It went over my head as I never figured out who “Gold nutsack” was.

The "getting too involved " may have been slightly infringed on but only maybe on that.

I considered the rest civil enough .


#15

There SHOULD be a place where long time users can discuss such things.

“talk among friends”

I believe we get to know each other better through our Off-topic discussions than our ON topic discussions


#16

[QUOTE=AllanDeGroot;2703234]I believe we get to know each other better through our Off-topic discussions than our ON topic discussions[/QUOTE] I agree with this.

However, in my experience on this forum, every political discussion eventually goes to hell in a handbasket, and usually it’s not the fault of new inexperienced members, so I don’t see how it would help to restrict the political discussions to “old” members.

Luckily enough, we don’t seem to get much religious discussions, which are potentially even more explosive than political ones.


#17

There are plenty of places where members can discuss these things without offending others, email, private messaging, instant messaging etc.

We always strive to protect the community here and the warm friendly atmosphere we have at present is not maintained without considerable effort from all the staff.

Reasonable discussions are fine, and we already allow these here, but creating a forum for [U]unreasonable[/U] remarks just doesn’t make a lot of sense to me either from a community or social perspective.

[B]Wombler[/B]


#18

Most of the time I don’t talk religion or politics because it’s the best way to ruin a friendship


#19

[QUOTE=Wombler;2703254]There are plenty of places where members can discuss these things without offending others, email, private messaging, instant messaging etc.[/QUOTE]
While that is a work around it is still not the same. Doing it “behind the scene” doesn’t allow the same amount of even long term members to see various posts a comment.
I know multiple PMs can be done but only 5 at a time. That takes a lot of time. Then there is always the member that gets left out but hears another member is PMing several members. & wonders why they were left out.

I do support UTR’s suggestion of a seperate limited access section.

My real preference would be an open subsection where almost anything goes . I don’t see that happening but that’s my 2 cents.

The way it is now would work OK but threads get closed that don’t actually violate the [B]Political Discussion Rules[/B] from the Living Room.
It is my understanding those are the rules for the whole forum concerning political threads.
The general forum rules are more strict in some ways because they even cover “rude and disrespectful” as a reason for closing or removing a thread.
Basically a thread can have this done for any reason an admin or mod feels it should.
I know this is necessary but since there are specific rules for a political discussion I feel those guidelines should be used.


#20

Actually, the political discussion rules are in addition to the forum wide rules. Together, these rules are enforced much more rigorously in political discussion.