I remember more courtesy here, way back when, never punctilious, but a generalized attention to the thread maker's intent. One could always start one's own thread, still can. Courtesy to thread starter's intent wasn't any kind of rule, but reasonably well maintained over time. Pretty good debating happened sometimes, not always, but more than now. Trolling seems to have increased on a lot of boards, and certainly here over the years.
1) I don't think this was ever the case. The good old days weren't always good.
2) I don't think this would be a good thing. Able2know is built so that everyone can comment on any read and respond to any post. This is a strength. It means that anyone can express their opinion and anyone can choose to support it, engage it, or ignore it.
3) I don't think "thread killing" is a thing. If a discussion on a thread has merit, and there is more to talk about on a thread, then it continues. It is pretty easy, you ignore the posts that you feel are a digression and continue the conversation with people whose position interest you.
4) The real issue is that there is a group of people that have what they feel to be the "correct" point of view. They are trying, through these posts, to stop anyone from challenging their ideas or from posting any point of view they have deemed unacceptable. They aren't doing this through debate. They are doing this through name-calling and personal attacks.
5) Once you start calling people "f***ing idiots" or "assholes", as people have done on this thread, you lose any argument about courtesy.
6) Let's support freedom of expression on Able2know and allow a diverse set of opinions to clash in a respectful way.
Post your opinions on any thread. Allow other people to to post theirs. If you agree with someone support them. If you don't agree, you can choose to ignore them or engage them. I like this space as a mixture of points of view where sometimes the interactions are interesting and when they are not, they can just be ignored.
This is how a board designed to support freedom of expression best works.
I only wish that the personal attacks and name-calling could stop.