7
   

How do you know if you are in an Ideological Echo Chamber?

 
 
Reply Sun 13 Aug, 2017 06:24 pm
1. There is a large group of people you agree with. You and they are all presenting the same ideas and the same perspectives over and over. No dissenting ideas are considered.

2. You never give any ground. You never once admit that someone on the other side of an argument has made a valid point... not even on one issue.

3. You google for studies and articles that support your conclusions. You believe them whether they are from a reputable source or not, and you publish them as fact.

4. You reject out of hand any studies or articles that contradict your conclusion. You don't read them with an open mind. You don't take the time to see if they raise any valid questions, or if they have any facts that might impact your own perspective. Discrediting opposing viewpoints is more important than looking to see if they have any valid points.

5. There are intellectual points made that offend you, or questions you feel should not be raise.. You feel that they simply shouldn't be discussed, even on an open forum such as this.

6. You use broad labels to lump everyone you disagree with into one, easily discredited group. You argue that your adversary is a fascist... whether she identifies herself as a fascist is immaterial. Discrediting an opposing viewpoint is more important than an accurate portrayal of the other side.

7. You never question any of the points made by people on your "side" once you have established a group of ideological peers. After all you feel it is more important to do battle with an ideological adversary rather than to worry whether your "side" is correct or not on any given point.

8. There is no honest discussion in your ideological group about the pros and cons of the conclusions you are reaching. Instead of acknowledging that there are negative consequences of every perspective, you insist that your perspective is only good, and that any other perspective is unacceptable.

10. Anyone presenting an alternate point of view is met with derision and often name calling. No one in the bubble calls anyone out on this.

11. You are uncomfortable with the word "ideology" being applied to your beliefs because of the implication that other "ideologies" might be equally valid.

12. You don't accept that everyone, including you, has their own prejudice. You see the prejudice in people outside your ideological bubble, but you don't look for own. You don't honestly look at how confirmation bias is working in your own arguments although you see it in others.



 
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Sun 13 Aug, 2017 08:11 pm
In the US right now, we are divided politically into roughly two competing ideologies (it is a little more complex than that).

On one side there are "conservatives" on the other side are "liberals". And now we have split news outlets and candidates, and narratives. We have competing lists of facts that sometimes contradict each other. And now we have social segregation and tools to feed us articles that support our ideological beliefs.

I don't think these ideological bubbles are good for anyone. It keeps us from questioning our own ideas and strengthens our divisions. You can't force other people to step out an ideological bubble... you can only challenge people in your own bubble.

I would like to know if people agree with this list? Are there points you would add? Are there points you think miss the mark?

These are the ways I challenge myself.

layman
 
  0  
Reply Sun 13 Aug, 2017 09:01 pm
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:
I would like to know if people agree with this list? Are there points you would add? Are there points you think miss the mark?


I think that's an excellent summary, Max. You might add one more, to wit: you do everything on that list and nonetheless adamantly deny that you are in a bubble.

For feebs, this groupthink is so comforting and reassuring that they are in possession of absolute truth that they can't see it any other way without losing their "identity."
0 Replies
 
layman
 
  1  
Reply Sun 13 Aug, 2017 09:06 pm
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:
These are the ways I challenge myself.

So you like to think, but you don't challenge yourself at all, in certain areas, at least.

The subject of special relativity has come up several times, and, with respect to that topic, you display every single "symptom" on your list, and never ever think twice about it, let alone "challenge yourself."

You are a robotic ideologue who never even begins to actually "think" about the topic rather than just SHOUT your ideological dogma, which is itself shallow and meaningless. It doesn't even pretend to be an "argument," just an assertion of conclusions that are held with the utmost faith.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Sun 13 Aug, 2017 09:09 pm
@layman,
LOL Layman,

I am talking about political ideology here, not scientific ideology. I believe that there are right answers, and wrong answers in science. If you want to say that puts me in a Scientific Ideological Echo Chamber... I plead no contest.

This is really about politics.
layman
 
  0  
Reply Sun 13 Aug, 2017 09:12 pm
@maxdancona,
Your thread is about thinking, Max, whether you realize it or not. That applies to any and every topic.
maxdancona
 
  2  
Reply Sun 13 Aug, 2017 09:13 pm
@layman,
If you say so Layman.
0 Replies
 
layman
 
  -1  
Reply Sun 13 Aug, 2017 10:04 pm
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:
I believe that there are right answers, and wrong answers in science.

I don't have to say it, Max, because you say it for me.

That one sentence alone proves how little you understand about theories of relative motion, in particular, and scientific theories in general. It is as dogmatic (and mistaken) as a sentence can be.
layman
 
  -1  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 01:08 am
@layman,
layman wrote:
That one sentence alone proves how little you understand about theories of relative motion, in particular, and scientific theories in general. It is as dogmatic (and mistaken) as a sentence can be.


There are "right and wrong" answers to mathematical calculations, of course, but that has nothing to do with scientific theory, per se. Yet you think physics IS math.

Some people speak of "Newton's theory of gravity," but that is a misunderstanding. Newton never pretended to offer a "theory" of gravity. In fact he expressly disavowed trying to do so.

What he produced was his "law" of gravity. This is merely a description on an empirically verified mathematical relationship. It is NOT a theory (explanation) of Gravity.

Issac Newton wrote:
I have not been able to discover the cause of those properties of gravity from phenomena, and I frame no hypotheses; for whatever is not deduced from the phenomena is to be called a hypothesis, and hypotheses, whether metaphysical or physical, whether of occult qualities or mechanical, have no place in experimental philosophy.

That Gravity should be innate, inherent and essential to Matter so that one Body may act upon another at a Distance thro' a Vacuum, without the Mediation of any thing else, by and through which their Action and Force may be conveyed, from one to another, is to me so great an Absurdity, that I believe that no Man who has in philosophical Matters a competent Faculty of thinking, can ever fall into it.


Of course Newton qualifies his expectation of agreement about the absurdity he mentions to those with "a competent faculty of thinking." Without that, you're lost, most likely in some mechanical, dogmatic, ideological manner of "explanation."
0 Replies
 
fresco
 
  2  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 02:13 am
Laughing
Here we go again !....or do we ?

I agree with Max that at the socio-political level most communicants tend to express polarisation since 'evidence' tends to be in the eye of the beholder. At the scientific level I disagree with him about his use of the terms 'right and wrong' as far a paradigms are concerned (since other factors like elegance are involved), but agree that they tend to generate crucial supportive evidence of a generally accepted nature.

Layman's obsession with SR, the paradigmatic misunderstanding of which has become central to his 'self integrity', has thereby triggered an argumentative social response in this instance. Lets hope he doesn't hijack the thread.

In answer to the question, 'how do we know...etc', a key word is 'we' because it can imply the internal debate that facets of 'self' have in which (a) those facets have competing vested interests only one of which tends to come to the fore at a time and (b) all 'we' s are covertly influenced by their conditioning and selective cultural immersion. So unless we have selected from that culture philosophical points like 'the inevitability of contradiction', the answer is 'we don't know'.

layman
 
  -1  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 02:48 am
@fresco,
Quote:
paradigmatic misunderstanding [of SR]

Heh, that's pretty rich, Fresky. Time after time, in post after post, in thread after thread, you have proven, beyond any conceivable doubt, that you do not have even an elementary understanding of special relativity, yet you still pretend to be in a position to judge others understanding of it. Typical, for you, Poseur, sho nuff.
0 Replies
 
hightor
 
  2  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 04:32 am
@maxdancona,
These are good points.

But what if one side is actually correct and the other side is provably wrong?
layman
 
  -1  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 04:57 am
@hightor,
hightor wrote:

These are good points.

But what if one side is actually correct and the other side is provably wrong?


Well, then, that wouldn't be the least bit relevant to the points he is making, that's what, eh?

That someone thinks it's relevant just serves to provide an example of someone who is in an "ideological echo chamber," actually, I figure.
0 Replies
 
maxdancona
 
  0  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 06:28 am
@hightor,
Quote:
But what if one side is actually correct and the other side is provably wrong?


Sure Hightor. In any discussion (including political discussions) there are provable facts. I have to accept the fact that even I am confident that I know a provable fact, there is a possibility I have gotten something wrong. There is a question I ask myself (even in scientific discussions where I know the right answer); What evidence or logic could the other side present that would change my mind about something that I am sure is factually true?

In an intelligent discussion, you start with provable facts... the rational way to come to a conclusion is to gather all of the evidence (studies, testimony, reasoning) together and then consider all of it as you make your conclusion on the facts. Unfortunately so often in politics people start with the conclusion they want and then gather up the evidence that supports it.

There is is more than that to a political discussion. Opinions aren't facts. This thread was inspired by the Ideological Echo Chamber set up in the Google Memo thread.... people are saying "Google was right to fire the engineer". This is a belief about morality, there are facts behind it, but at the end of the day there is a subjective judgement and there is an argument to be made on either side.

In political discussions, usually this is the case. Even if both sides of an issue agree on all the facts, they will still come up with opposite opinions on the issue. Sadly, that doesn't even happen since in an ideological echo chamber opinions change how the facts are understood.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 06:30 am
@maxdancona,
I have been thinking about creating a discussion forum that would have each participant in a thread to agree to a list of facts before diving into a discussion. I am wondering if making a user experience that focused on facts would lead to more fact based discussions.
maporsche
 
  3  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 06:51 am
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

I have been thinking about creating a discussion forum that would have each participant in a thread to agree to a list of facts before diving into a discussion. I am wondering if making a user experience that focused on facts would lead to more fact based discussions.


I re-read parts of my college text for my debate class from years ago and there was a section of text that said someone who's truly thought out their argument should be able to argue both sides of a position equally well.

I've decided that here on this board, when I make a post representing my position on a subject or issue, I'll also include a section where I try to predict the best counter-argument to that position. I may not do the argument justice but I'm hoping that by showing that I'm considering other viewpoints will spark a better discussion
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 06:58 am
@maporsche,
Quote:
someone who's truly thought out their argument should be able to argue both sides of a position equally well.


I love that Maporsche.

Sadly, the opinions here are pretty homogeneous. On most issues if I tried to argue the other side, I would not have any one else with whom to argue. (I suspect I would get lots of up-thumbs though).

My life is mostly lived in the liberal political bubble. But, I have a couple of connections in my life that push me outside my bubble... and I usually have trouble keeping my mouth shut (although I can shut up when it is absolutely necessary). This makes life interesting and I have found some intelligent conservatives and libertarians with whom I can have interesting discussions.

Able2Know of late corresponds pretty well with the liberal bubble.
Cycloptichorn
 
  2  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 01:48 pm
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

Quote:
someone who's truly thought out their argument should be able to argue both sides of a position equally well.


I love that Maporsche.

Sadly, the opinions here are pretty homogeneous. On most issues if I tried to argue the other side, I would not have any one else with whom to argue. (I suspect I would get lots of up-thumbs though).

My life is mostly lived in the liberal political bubble. But, I have a couple of connections in my life that push me outside my bubble... and I usually have trouble keeping my mouth shut (although I can shut up when it is absolutely necessary). This makes life interesting and I have found some intelligent conservatives and libertarians with whom I can have interesting discussions.

Able2Know of late corresponds pretty well with the liberal bubble.



We used to do this quite a bit in high-school and college debate: argue one side of a position, and then turn around and two minutes later argue the exact opposite side. You get really good at attacking your own argument by doing so.

As for me, I stay out of the bubble by extensively and almost exclusively reading right-wing blogs, websites and forums. I'm a pretty liberal guy and I don't need to be told what I already think on any number of issues; I don't need to read analysis in left-wing sites to understand issues or my position on them. FAR better is to understand and judge the arguments of your opposition, and yes, this does lead to both a softening of previously-held positions and an understanding that the 'other side' can have some very sincere people who simply disagree with you.

To any other liberal poster here, I recommend reading daily:

Hotair.com
Redstate.com
National Review - The Corner
reddit's r/conservative forum
reddit's r/republican forum

Cycloptichorn
Olivier5
 
  1  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 02:46 pm
Truth be told, we all live in an ideological 'bubble', in the sense that our ideology (or philosophy, or worldview, or core beliefs) shape not only our opinions but also 1) the facts we consider important, as opposed to trivial background noise, and 2) how we interpret these facts.

So the OP point #12 is the most important IMO: in order to keep a modicum of intellectual honesty and openess, one needs to be aware of one's own core ideological beliefs. That's the only way one can test them. If you remain unconscious of your beliefs, you will forever be their prisoner. Frank comes to mind. His believed that he had no beliefs, and therefore he could never examine them.

It's also good practice to reflect upon how one arrived at those beliefs, in one's life (education, role models, turning points), as this analysis shows to us that we once thought differently about, say, capitalism, Islam or the EU, without being "bad people".
0 Replies
 
Sturgis
 
  2  
Reply Mon 14 Aug, 2017 04:17 pm
@maxdancona,
Interesting list. I've seen people who fit into the list rather well. One friend of mine fits the list and is on the left, another fits the list and is on the right.


As to ideological bubbles and echo chambers, I've seen you land yourself in there on quite a few threads you've started. Makes me wonder how serious you are about challenging yourself.
 

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