Author Topic: The science of Trolls  (Read 7688 times)

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Offline GodSlayer

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #225 on: July 17, 2017, 07:42:29 AM »
Really? You would actually insult someone developmentally disabled? I doubt even you are that petty, shallow and insecure.

since when was calling a dog a dog insulting it?
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In a controversy, the instant we feel anger we have already ceased striving for the truth, and have begun striving for ourselves.

Offline gmalivuk

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #226 on: July 17, 2017, 07:49:04 AM »
One of the reasons people accuse you of trolling is because you keep asking dumb shit like this.

I don't believe you are actually completely ignorant of connotations, but I guess if this was a genuine question and not a fake rhetorical one, you can Google the word "connotation".
The world is so exquisite with so much love and moral depth, that there is no reason to deceive ourselves with pretty stories for which there's little good evidence. Far better...is to look death in the eye and to be grateful every day for the brief but magnificent opportunity that life provides.

Offline GodSlayer

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #227 on: July 17, 2017, 08:21:18 AM »
One of the reasons people accuse you of trolling is because you keep asking dumb shit like this.

I'm not asking anything. it's rhetorical.

and idiotic 'answer' in reply has no more worth to me than the comment that prompted my words in the first place.
Quote from: Thomas Carlyle
In a controversy, the instant we feel anger we have already ceased striving for the truth, and have begun striving for ourselves.

Offline GodSlayer

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #228 on: July 17, 2017, 08:23:31 AM »
you can Google the word "connotation".

oh, but sir, I haven't the foggiest what this 'google' you speak of is. it's as mysterious to me as your arcane vocabulary.
Quote from: Thomas Carlyle
In a controversy, the instant we feel anger we have already ceased striving for the truth, and have begun striving for ourselves.

Offline gmalivuk

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #229 on: July 17, 2017, 08:34:34 AM »
One of the reasons people accuse you of trolling is because you keep asking dumb shit like this.

I'm not asking anything. it's rhetorical.

and idiotic 'answer' in reply has no more worth to me than the comment that prompted my words in the first place.
You *asked* a bullshit rhetorical *question* that (intentionally) missed the point.

Apart from connotations, even if you want to pretend you're just using the (mostly archaic) psychological definition of "retarded", that's a definition that only applies to people, not to statements or arguments. And if you apply it to another poster, then you're making an untrained armchair diagnosis which is almost certainly false.

So as stated, the denotation is almost never true when used as an insult, and the connotations are shitty on top of that.
The world is so exquisite with so much love and moral depth, that there is no reason to deceive ourselves with pretty stories for which there's little good evidence. Far better...is to look death in the eye and to be grateful every day for the brief but magnificent opportunity that life provides.

Offline GodSlayer

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #230 on: July 17, 2017, 08:39:36 AM »
You *asked* a bullshit rhetorical *question* that (intentionally) missed the point.

this entire thread is an exercise in missing points, you haven't caught on to that by now?

have you not noticed that not a single worthwhile sustained and honest dispassionate argument has taken place here for so long as a page? there are none BUT trolls here, no one capable of being a man.

even you, use your convoluted language to insult fellow members to coyly skirt the rules, rather than post non-trolling posts that people might simply engage with the merits of.

A lesser person might actually humor your posts despite your indulgence in hypocrisy.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 08:41:39 AM by GodSlayer »
Quote from: Thomas Carlyle
In a controversy, the instant we feel anger we have already ceased striving for the truth, and have begun striving for ourselves.

Offline gmalivuk

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #231 on: July 17, 2017, 09:45:49 AM »
Nice mix of projection and Peewee Herman.
The world is so exquisite with so much love and moral depth, that there is no reason to deceive ourselves with pretty stories for which there's little good evidence. Far better...is to look death in the eye and to be grateful every day for the brief but magnificent opportunity that life provides.

Offline GodSlayer

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #232 on: July 17, 2017, 09:59:49 AM »
Nice mix of projection and Peewee Herman.

nice old man references.
Quote from: Thomas Carlyle
In a controversy, the instant we feel anger we have already ceased striving for the truth, and have begun striving for ourselves.

Offline Nosmas

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #233 on: July 17, 2017, 10:54:32 AM »
This is back to that pointless "definition" argument.

To ascertain whether it's true, the definition of the term must be agreed.
Here, I think it is unlikely to be agreed that the fact that it is a label used to persons with certain impaired development, it must necessarily stem that it is "true" as it relates to the delay or hold back in terms of progress or development. The problem, or so it appears, is that one party sees it as derogatory (and hence I can never be true that a person deserves to be saddled with that label), vs  "its literally correct" (even if it's unkind, unhelpful or even derogatory). An argument could well be made that both of the above accord with fact or reality.

Estockly, do you have a definition for "retard" so that Godslayer can apply his "truth" test to it (without defining it to be an insult)? Because that would get us to the point that you both just disagree on the meaning of the word - and I remain confident that wont make anyone happy.

There's no way that one, or the other, is going to acknowledge the basis for the disagreement and acknowledge that "in that context"  the meaning of "true" varies. Truth is a matter of perspective, because of the unstated assumptions. It's the same as the "slut" debate... slut means "to be sexually promiscuous" (for example). Therefore it's only an insulting if being sexually promiscuous is a bad thing. There's no absolute on whether it is or is not a bad thing, therefore whether it's an insult depends on context.

That said, I am confident that those who argue that "retarded" is untrue, would also argue that "Slut" is inappropriate for the same reason. One sees it as an insult, one sees it as a statement of fact. Neither willing to admit that it could be both.

And if it is both, then the "truth" defense (and objection) both fall away as mutually exclusive. The Fact that it true does not make it less insulting (in the opinion of one) while the other says "the fact that it is true means that it doesn't matter if it's insulting".

Using the same words gets us nowhere because there's no meeting of the minds in terms of the context or even the things being described. The problem stems from assumptions made, and never discussed, or satisfactorily resolved. This gets us no closer to a description of trolling, but it demonstrates at least part of the issue.

What a complete load of bullshit. If this is the quality of moderation on this forum, then the SGU should be ashamed to be associated with it.

I find this kind of reply to be pretty trollish. DG posts a long reply attempting to clarify his thoughts on this disagreement and trying to highlight a source of the problem between both sides.

Now you might think he is totally wrong about some or all of it, but to respond "this is bullshit" to a multiparagraph post which is making multiple different points is just lazy. Why not highlight the specific thing you disagree with and at least attempt to explain why it's bullshit?

To make it worse you end it with an accusation of shitty moderation when DG was clearly not responding as a mod or making any statements what have anything to do with him being a mod.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 11:57:59 AM by Nosmas »
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Offline Andrew Clunn

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #234 on: July 17, 2017, 11:26:32 AM »
If people stopped using the accusation of being a "troll" and started saying "You're bringing down the level of discourse with your personal attack / substance-free response / unnecessarily divisive choice of words" then this wouldn't even be an issue.  Of course I totally respect people's right to use the term troll, even if it is divisive, because sometimes it is in fact both an insult AND true (to use DG's phrasing).
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Online CarbShark

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #235 on: July 17, 2017, 11:34:35 AM »

Estockly, do you have a definition for "retard" so that Godslayer can apply his "truth" test to it (without defining it to be an insult)?

No. First, I was only referring to it in the context of an insult. In that sense, much like the N-word, there's never a case where using it as an insult in that context is true  (or appropriate).

Second, at one time it was used to describe developmental or intellectual disabilities. That's no longer and acceptable term.

Third, this discussion began with a video using the word retarded to make fun of someone with developmental disabilities and using that to insult participants in a thread who the poster disagreed with. That is beyond the pale. Maybe it would be appropriate on Reddit or other forums that are not interested in science or skepticism, but it's not appropriate here.

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Because that would get us to the point that you both just disagree on the meaning of the word - and I remain confident that wont make anyone happy.

I think we agree on the definition of the insult. But you are right, no happiness from that.


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There's no way that one, or the other, is going to acknowledge the basis for the disagreement and acknowledge that "in that context"  the meaning of "true" varies. Truth is a matter of perspective, because of the unstated assumptions. It's the same as the "slut" debate... slut means "to be sexually promiscuous" (for example). Therefore it's only an insulting if being sexually promiscuous is a bad thing. There's no absolute on whether it is or is not a bad thing, therefore whether it's an insult depends on context.

Maybe true was not the best or only word I could have used. Valid, appropriate, acceptable, it's never any of those. I used "true" because the discussion had twisted into some kind of "if it's true I must be able to say it no matter how offensive it is".

In that sense, applying a term that's no longer used to describe people (n-word; r-word) to describe those people is not "true" and even with the twisted "I can say what's true" logic, using that word as an insult fails.


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That said, I am confident that those who argue that "retarded" is untrue, would also argue that "Slut" is inappropriate for the same reason. One sees it as an insult, one sees it as a statement of fact. Neither willing to admit that it could be both.

It just so happens I believe that "slut" is never appropriate either for a variety of reasons. 


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And if it is both, then the "truth" defense (and objection) both fall away as mutually exclusive. The Fact that it true does not make it less insulting (in the opinion of one) while the other says "the fact that it is true means that it doesn't matter if it's insulting".

No one is saying that "the fact that it is true makes it less insulting."

If anything their position seems to be that the fact that their insult is true makes it more insulting and that's the intent, so tough shit if you don't like it, it's true and I can say anything I want that's true.

And  the other side is "while technically you don't meet the old standard for the MR diagnosis or any common standard, so the word doesn't apply to you, but I'm happy to insult you with it anyway cause I'm a dick and I don't care about using that kind of loaded language when I want to offend and/or get attention.

(I think you've set up a false dichotomy and my position the discussion isn't represented.)

My position is that there are a few words in the language (the n-word, the r-word, and, now that you mention it, probably the s-word) that have been used in horrific, demeaning, disempowering and dehumanizing ways to bully, subjugate and marginalize people undeserving of that treatment, and those words are never (NEVER) appropriately used as insults in intellectual and civil discourse. (With the n-word, I go further, and argue it should never be used)

The only point about whether it's "true" or not, is that in the case of those words used as insults, the "I can say it if it's true" card doesn't apply (if it ever did). GodSlayer came up with a what about using it to insult a developmentally disabled person? To which my reply was even GS is above that. Since the word is no longer used to describe those conditions and it's proper definition was to describe the condition, not the individual, it still fails the "true" test, meaning even if there were a "you can say anything that's true even if it's offensive and objectionable" rule, that would still fail.

It may be that AC and GS were ignorant that it is not appropriate to make fun of developmentally disabled or use that term to insult others, but now that it's an issue and people have taken sides they don't care because it's the internet.

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Offline Andrew Clunn

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #236 on: July 17, 2017, 12:10:14 PM »
I'm actually extremely sensitive (personally) to insulting people with mental illness.  I just don't agree that modifying language as a means of coddling them is the way to show them respect.

I recall the Paul Hogan movie Almost and Angel (I know , I know, bear with me).  You meet somebody on their terms and have enough respect to expect them to rise above whatever limitations they have, in the same way you expect yourself to strive for self improvement.  The relevant part is about 5 minutes in:



You can disagree with where I'm coming from, but believing that my disagreement means I somehow lack your empathy or am ignorant of your position is a cop out.  I'm aware of that position and reject it consciously because I find it morally deficient.  The difference is I don't try to shame you for (what I see as) your moral failing.
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Offline gmalivuk

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #237 on: July 17, 2017, 01:14:36 PM »
I'm actually extremely sensitive (personally) to insulting people with mental illness.  I just don't agree that modifying language as a means of coddling them is the way to show them respect.
Showing yourself to be a basically decent human being by avoiding slurs is not "coddling" anyone.
The world is so exquisite with so much love and moral depth, that there is no reason to deceive ourselves with pretty stories for which there's little good evidence. Far better...is to look death in the eye and to be grateful every day for the brief but magnificent opportunity that life provides.

Online CarbShark

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #238 on: July 17, 2017, 03:49:01 PM »
I'm actually extremely sensitive (personally) to insulting people with mental illness.  I just don't agree that modifying language as a means of coddling them is the way to show them respect.


OK, if that's the case, the how does that jibe with your using a video mocking and insulting people with mental disabilities, and then refusing to edit your post and remove the offensive video?

If anything that seems to be the height of insensitivity.


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You can disagree with where I'm coming from, but believing that my disagreement means I somehow lack your empathy or am ignorant of your position is a cop out.  I'm aware of that position and reject it consciously because I find it morally deficient.  The difference is I don't try to shame you for (what I see as) your moral failing.


I don't think I suggested you lacked empathy, that's your word. But it's not your disagreement that raises these issues. It's your actions (posting that video, refusing to remove it). The suggestion that you were ignorant of how offensive that video is, was actually giving you the benefit of the doubt.

and Donald Trump is President of the United States.


"Well, sometimes the magic works. Sometimes it doesn't." -- Chief Dan George, "Little Big Man"

Offline Andrew Clunn

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Re: The science of Trolls
« Reply #239 on: July 17, 2017, 04:13:02 PM »
There's no point to continuing this.  You've made it clear that you are either unwilling or incapable of entertaining different opinions.  From your perspective I am and shall always be a troll, and oddly I'm damn proud of that fact.
I'm just the victim of my cognitive privilege

 

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