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Where is A2K going (and why are we in this handbasket)?

 
 
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2015 10:30 am
Able2Know is dying.

A few years ago, a few years ago there was fairly respectable debate with people who had diverse of opinions. I remember when I could have an intelligent discussion with someone with whom I disagreed with without it devolving into name-calling. Now we have personal attacks on pretty much any thread.

There is a basic existential question for those who remember the old Able2Know culture... which is now almost lost.

What should Able2Know be a community? There are two directions it can take

1) We could be a place for respectful discussion with people with different perspectives and people who don't agree with you on many things. This would be a place to learn and to have your own ideas challenged. And it would be a place where you would respect people's right to disagree with you.

2) Or we could be place to have popular ideas confirmed by popular people and unpopular ideas and unpopular people attacked.. People will be attacked for disagreement, and meanness against people with unpopular opinions will be cheered.

Facebook has a friend model. You can select the people you want to hear from (presumably people who think as you do) and you shut out anyone else. Facebook avoids the meanness because you will just "unfriend" someone.

I don't think Able2Know should work like Facebook. The real power Able2Know used to be that I could have intelligent respectful discussion with people who I didn't agree with. The fact that I was coming into contact with people who were my "friends" and didn't think exactly the way I do was the point.

Able2Know currently is drawing on the worst of both worlds. People are coming into contact with people they disagree with... but instead of a meaningful intelligent and respectful discussion... what we are getting is personal attacks and a deliberate attempt to shut out unpopular opinions.

I miss having a place for intelligent, respectful discussion with people who don't think as I do. Something has been lost here.

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Type: Question • Score: 14 • Views: 2,446 • Replies: 53

 
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2015 10:42 am
@maxdancona,
Max, I think there is a good deal more intelligent, meaningful discussion going on here than you seem to see.

This is an Internet forum...and people will always start taking shots at others. The anonymity almost guarantees that.

I make a habit of only responding with digs...after digs are gratuitously sent my way.

That is the best anyone can do given the environment.

But like I said, not a day goes by where I do not have a rewarding, intelligent, meaningful discussion with someone here.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2015 11:25 am
@Frank Apisa,
I am glad you feel that way Frank.

I remember things being much better when I first joined. Digs are digs, but you didn't have the meanness toward people with dissenting opinions that we have now.

The community at A2k encourages personal attacks toward unpopular opinions, some of the most well-regarded members write the nastiest posts. It didn't used to be that way.
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2015 11:35 am
@maxdancona,
Even the comments on youtube songs can get testy Max...with swearing and belittling going on over a song!

Humans are bickering little beasts. Give 'em a bit of anonymity...and the resources of the Internet...and this is the kind of thing that happens.

Just gotta try not to plug in.
0 Replies
 
contrex
 
  6  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2015 11:52 am
I made my first post here in November 2004, and it seems pretty much the same as it was then - a mixture of intelligent debate, questions about broken Rainsoft water softeners, and idiot posts by dickweeds and cranks in about the same proportions.

0 Replies
 
Sturgis
 
  4  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2015 01:10 pm
Of course the site has changed. All things change over time.

Is it better or worse? That is open to debate/dispute. There seem to be fewer regular posters than there once were, in part it would appear to be connected to Facebook which many have drifted towards, some taking that as their preferred location. Ideas however are still being presented in much the same way as they were when I first arrived here in 2005. Attacks have remained constant as have lovefests. Some lovefests find two members who always attack each other playing sucky-face with each other. Underneath it all they seem to respect the ravings of their enemy.

Less posters less new topics leads to an image of approaching doom; yet, there is still a strong pulse and heartbeat which means A2K is not nearly deceased, just needs a little care and input. Until then take it as a community with a smaller population, which can be a good thing.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  3  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2015 01:24 pm
Sturgis bes correct. This site will thrive as long as the owners deem it to be. If some leave, others will take their place. Some cycles will seem better than others.
0 Replies
 
oralloy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2015 11:41 pm

I wonder what became of the proposal for that two-way hyper-ignore function.

I usually view the proposal as a bad idea because the potential for abuse seems astronomical, but it also might just allow someone to separate themselves from the name-callers.
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Thu 9 Apr, 2015 11:59 pm
@oralloy,
Quote:
I wonder what became of the proposal for that two-way hyper-ignore function.


Didn't Robert say that he lost interest in sinking any more time into big changes? Plus that idea turned out to be controversial, and it was not at all clear that it would improve the place. It is pretty hard to be an ideas and debate place if lots of efforts are being put into shutting down communications.

The way I remember it Robert and the crew was tinkering a lot with the place when he had designs to turn it into a money maker. Once it was clear that was not going to happen I think paying work took priority.

BTW: I would like to know who is paying these days. I have a feeling that a couple of old members are chipping in to cover costs, and the several people are donating a bit of time here and there on the tech side to keep the site up. For some odd reason we are never allowed to know such things.
oralloy
 
  -2  
Reply Fri 10 Apr, 2015 02:51 am
@hawkeye10,
hawkeye10 wrote:
Didn't Robert say that he lost interest in sinking any more time into big changes?

I don't know. I don't read a lot of the threads here. If I've never replied to a thread, chances are I've also never read it.


hawkeye10 wrote:
Plus that idea turned out to be controversial, and it was not at all clear that it would improve the place. It is pretty hard to be an ideas and debate place if lots of efforts are being put into shutting down communications.

I can see the problems with the idea myself, but it looked to me like no one in charge was interested in hearing about those problems. Plus lots of people were thinking it was a good idea.
0 Replies
 
FOUND SOUL
 
  9  
Reply Fri 10 Apr, 2015 02:56 am
@maxdancona,
I think in reality there are (3) simular threads to this or at least posts started within threads in the last few days.

You know? I'd like to think that if you love this place you'd create more threads of interest for those here to join in on and others will see and naturally make their own thread of conversation.

It's called a "good" family community that is important to those "family members".

But having only been here a few years, I'm still here and I'd be one of the first to start threads and reply to more posters in order for A2K to gain more recognition.

Excepting in my opinion it doesn't need it. It stands on it's own, it's a free spirited Forum to a large degree not what I was used to.

The tough don't care and the polite just speak their mind and the nasties well what can I say.

I dislike these posts. It's whining . When the going gets tough the tough get going I'm sure we could just think out the square and create enjoyable threads to participate in.

Maybe some are just bored and carry on the same ol same ol in a lot of old threads and then get their knickers in a knot.

I've enjoyed a vast array here and will continue to do so.
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Apr, 2015 05:26 am
Ultimately, this is an Internet forum. There will be blood!

Hoping for courtesy and reason is like hoping for a cure for world peace!

I've participated in several different forums...and I think we handle it here as well as it is handled elsewhere...except for those places where there essentially is NO freedom of expression.
dalehileman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Apr, 2015 04:06 pm
@Frank Apisa,
Frank it's interesting you should so advise. I've belonged to numerous forums of various kinds and I've found a2k is one of the very most liberal
0 Replies
 
neologist
 
  1  
Reply Fri 10 Apr, 2015 04:20 pm
@maxdancona,
If we did not have counterpoint, what would be the point?
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  -1  
Reply Fri 10 Apr, 2015 04:28 pm
@FOUND SOUL,
Quote:
I dislike these posts. It's whining

then go somewhere else, to some other threads that you like better, you are a free woman. People should be able to talk about what ever they want to talk about. FULL. STOP.
FOUND SOUL
 
  4  
Reply Fri 10 Apr, 2015 04:35 pm
@hawkeye10,
Yep, free to be able to provide my "own" opinion in which I did.

Whiner...

Quote:
cant just let things lie. They will go on for years and act like a total jerk over nothing. They create drama.
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Fri 10 Apr, 2015 04:40 pm
@FOUND SOUL,
We can take your lack of participation in a thread as your vote of non interest, typing it into a thread is a sign of either your narcissism or your boredom.
FOUND SOUL
 
  6  
Reply Fri 10 Apr, 2015 04:44 pm
@hawkeye10,
"And why are we in this handbasket?"

Nope, you can take it as I read the OP's thread and decided to provide my opinion.

QUIT telling me which threads I should participate on and which one's I shouldn't in addition what my mood is or my nature.

I think you secretly want to sleep with me.
hawkeye10
 
  0  
Reply Fri 10 Apr, 2015 04:51 pm
@FOUND SOUL,
Right, after you complain that the thread exists you just have to go on about your opinion on the question.


That took some balls.
FOUND SOUL
 
  5  
Reply Fri 10 Apr, 2015 04:52 pm
@hawkeye10,
Thanks, I'm a gutsy lady Hawk.
0 Replies
 
 

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