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This is an experiment. I want to create a thread where people do not see the need to bicker about every little thing. Theee can be disagreements, certainly, but people who post here need to agree to try to handle disagreements in a civil manner. Any topic is fair game, but we all need to be aware of each otter's hot buttons and try to avoid pressing them if possible. Apologies are acceptable if we do. No out downs or insults please. Civility is the theme.

Basically, I'm wondering how many posts this thread can go before it gets derailed.

First topic: communication on an Internet forum can be a complicated affair.

Have at 'er.
 

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This is an experiment. I want to create a thread where people do not see the need to bicker about every little thing. Theee can be disagreements, certainly, but people who post here need to agree to try to handle disagreements in a civil manner. Any topic is fair game, but we all need to be aware of each otter's hot buttons and try to avoid pressing them if possible. Apologies are acceptable if we do. No out downs or insults please. Civility is the theme.

Basically, I'm wondering how many posts this thread can go before it gets derailed.

First topic: communication on an Internet forum can be a complicated affair.

Have at 'er.
A great idea, Frank. Sounds a bit like the Shangri-La Clubhouse thread.

As for your question, I think that what complicates communication on a forum is that some people might take a POV presented by someone personally, and then the discussion is not on the topic, but on the clash of personalities. What helps is that personal relationships develop, and thus, disagreements are accepted gracefully. For example, I consider you a friend, but not because we agree on many areas of discussion. I also consider Sinc and Macfury friends, even though we disagree of certain items. I think it all comes down to personalities.

Paix, mon ami.

(My apologies to the likes of Rp, screature, et al who I also consider friends, but did not include your names.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
A great idea, Frank. Sounds a bit like the Shangri-La Clubhouse thread.



As for your question, I think that what complicates communication on a forum is that some people might take a POV presented by someone personally, and then the discussion is not on the topic, but on the clash of personalities. What helps is that personal relationships develop, and thus, disagreements are accepted gracefully. For example, I consider you a friend, but not because we agree on many areas of discussion. I also consider Sinc and Macfury friends, even though we disagree of certain items. I think it all comes down to personalities.



Paix, mon ami.



(My apologies to the likes of Rp, screature, et al who I also consider friends, but did not include your names.)

Interesting points, Marc. I think it also becomes a little like family, where you've known someone so long you sometimes take them for granted and say things, insults even, that you would never say to a stranger or someone you haven't known that long. Perhaps, communication often evolves into a sort of shorthand where you assume the other person knows what we're trying to say so why go to all the trouble of explaining it. However, that can also lead to pigeon-holing, which is not a good practice in my experience. Interesting subject.
 

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Interesting points, Marc. I think it also becomes a little like family, where you've known someone so long you sometimes take them for granted and say things, insults even, that you would never say to a stranger or someone you haven't known that long. Perhaps, communication often evolves into a sort of shorthand where you assume the other person knows what we're trying to say so why go to all the trouble of explaining it. However, that can also lead to pigeon-holing, which is not a good practice in my experience. Interesting subject.
Some valid points, Frank. I've made some good friends here in ehMacLand, even though I have never met any of them. Paix, mon ami.
 

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I too have met many great folks here, some of them in person. Many of those are no longer here, but there are some I still see on occasion. Some have been much different that they would appear to be here online than in person. Other were exactly what you would expect from their online postings.

It seems to me that civil behaviour does not include posting referee memes and the like that are insulting to others, so I will not post anything of the sort here in this thread.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I too have met many great folks here, some of them in person. Many of those are no longer here, but there are some I still see on occasion. Some have been much different that they would appear to be here online than in person. Other were exactly what you would expect from their online postings.



It seems to me that civil behaviour does not include posting referee memes and the like that are insulting to others, so I will not post anything of the sort here in this thread.

No more insulting than repeatedly referring to someone with whom one doesn't agree as a "snowflake," but point taken. We'll see how long the civility experiment lasts on this thread. Paix, mon ami.
 

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One thing that seems to lead to vitriol online is the miscommunication arising from one or more readers not "catching" what the writer is trying to say. I see this a lot when somebody writes something that's intended to be sarcastic, but it's taken as the writer's actual opinion by readers. You don't, of course, have the usual things that help clarify somebody's meaning -- facial expressions, ton of voice, gestures. All you've got is a few lines of text.

And unfortunately, so far nobody's come up with a sarcasm font. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
One thing that seems to lead to vitriol online is the miscommunication arising from one or more readers not "catching" what the writer is trying to say. I see this a lot when somebody writes something that's intended to be sarcastic, but it's taken as the writer's actual opinion by readers. You don't, of course, have the usual things that help clarify somebody's meaning -- facial expressions, ton of voice, gestures. All you've got is a few lines of text.



And unfortunately, so far nobody's come up with a sarcasm font. :)

These are very good points to consider, VieleKatzen. Tone contributes a great deal to any message. I try to use the winky for sarcasm/verbal irony, although some might think I was flirting with them.
 

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These are very good points to consider, VieleKatzen. Tone contributes a great deal to any message. I try to use the winky for sarcasm/verbal irony, although some might think I was flirting with them.
You can put your concerns to rest Frank. I have never once thought you to be flirting with me. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Someone tried (it leans backwards). Hopefully it will gain popularity. I'm not going to say if that last sentence should or should not use the font.

Some see sarcasm as a mean-spirited form of language, but I see it more as witty. I guess it depends on the intent; if I'm trying to poke a friend into laughing with me that's one thing, but if I'm just trying to make someone look stupid or uneducated, then that would be mean. I've always thought that having to spell out that something is sarcastic kind of takes away from its power. It's like starting off by saying,"Here's a good April Fool's Joke."
 

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These are very good points to consider, VieleKatzen. Tone contributes a great deal to any message. I try to use the winky for sarcasm/verbal irony, although some might think I was flirting with them.
I will keep that in mind if ever I see the winky directed at me ... :D

I've taken to writing /SARCASM/ at the bottom of posts ... just to reduce the possibility of miscommunication.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I will keep that in mind if ever I see the winky directed at me ... :D



I've taken to writing /SARCASM/ at the bottom of posts ... just to reduce the possibility of miscommunication.

We do we have to do in this day and age, don't we!
 

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Alas, we do ... on my FB page I reposted what I thought was a really funny article about a major political figure that, IMO, was very obviously satire.

You'll never guess what happened, of course ....

Somebody responded in a towering rage, telling me that it was "fake news" like this "that put us where we are today!" Oh, and they included a link from Snopes just to prove it was fake news. I replied, mostly in ALL CAPS, and decided at that point to take a loonnng break from FB. :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Boy. "Fake news." "Alternative Facts." If the waters weren't already muddy before, they sure are now. And when you have the literalists and those with a fondness for, say, the rhetoric of language, all operating in the same communication sphere, it can become confusing indeed. As a teacher, I'm trying to get students to understand the intent behind a writer's choice of words, and what "theme" really means. Jonathan Swift didn't really mean for parents to eat their children as a solution both to the food shortage and overpopulation in "A Modest Proposal" but it freaked enough people out that he would even suggest a thing. Communication with intent truly is an art.


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Good on you, I hope you're getting through! It's true that now more than ever people need to learn to think, especially when it comes to social sites like FB. You either learn to be very skeptical, very fast, or you fall ass-over-teakettle down the rabbit hole.

I used to be a reporter, so I should be wary of stuff that just crops up on the internet, and I usually am ... the operative word being "usually". I've been taken to task a couple of times by former coworkers (who are still in the business) for not checking something before I forwarded it. :eek:
 

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Boy. "Fake news." "Alternative Facts." If the waters weren't already muddy before, they sure are now. And when you have the literalists and those with a fondness for, say, the rhetoric of language, all operating in the same communication sphere, it can become confusing indeed. As a teacher, I'm trying to get students to understand the intent behind a writer's choice of words, and what "theme" really means. Jonathan Swift didn't really mean for parents to eat their children as a solution both to the food shortage and overpopulation in "A Modest Proposal" but it freaked enough people out that he would even suggest a thing. Communication with intent truly is an art.


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I think most communication has intent, whether it be to simply inform/educate, provocate, entertain, make us laugh or think or feel, propaganda, etc. The only form of communication that has no direct intent is the use of non sequitur. I think in the writers mind they probably mean to provoke but in an abstract way, not directly. Or simply be the spring board for another unrelated idea or thought in the readers mind. Sort of like "stream of consciousness".
 

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I've been taken to task a couple of times by former coworkers (who are still in the business) for not checking something before I forwarded it. :eek:
I check news reports regularly to make sure that anything I post here is at least triangulated in some way. Often when I check a news story I find hundreds of links parroting exactly the same article word for word--and often those words are wrong.
 

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I check news reports regularly to make sure that anything I post here is at least triangulated in some way. Often when I check a news story I find hundreds of links parroting exactly the same article word for word--and often those words are wrong.
Exactly. In this day and age "fact checking" has indeed become a somewhat arduous task, simply due to the the plethora of commentary and "reports" on basically anything you can think about. Drilling down through the pile of online communication dung takes work if you are going to speak in an educated manner on almost any topic.
 
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