[Thunderdome] »« The one thing keeping me awake right now…

The New Rules

I’ve been getting a little exasperated lately — Pharyngula is a relatively lawless place, which is good for getting combative, aggressive discussions going, but not so good when discussions spin off into frustratingly ingrown fussing and howling and pointless boundary-pushing. This is my party, I’ll have you know, and there have been way too many times when I have not been enjoying it.

So I’m changing a few things. There will be new rules. There will be new means of enforcement. The Dungeon is back (bwahahahahaha!). There will be new policies for specific kinds of threads. There will be a few clarifying name changes.

I will be restarting TET and TZT under new names.

TET will become [Lounge]. It is still the same: an open thread, talk about what you want, but I’m going to be specific: it is a safe space. Discussion and polite disagreement are allowed, but you will respect all the commenters, damn you. No personal attacks allowed at all. If you’re feeling angry at someone in the thread, back off and leave: there is no shortage of rage threads on Pharyngula, but this one isn’t it. These threads will be heavily moderated…which means that if you break any of the rules, they will be promptly and strongly enforced.

TZT will become [Thunderdome]. Like it says: open brawling permitted and encouraged. Say what you want, be as vicious and personal as you want, make people bleed metaphorically. Vent here. This thread will be unmoderated; the only restraint will be the unmitigated attacks of other participants in the thread. That means I’ll look the other way at behavior that goes on here, but do be warned: I may eventually decide that you’re too nasty to be allowed to wander elsewhere on the site, and may be condemned to Thunderdome and only Thunderdome forever. And confinement to the Thunderdome is often a preliminary step before being tossed into the Dungeon.

Normal threads will be moderated by the rules listed below.

The Absolute Law

I AM THE BOSS, and don’t you forget it. I have sole and absolute power here; I can ban you, I can destroy your comments, I can shut down whole threads. I am a being of caprice; I don’t have to justify anything I do. So when I tell you to stop doing something, stop. Don’t argue with me. You don’t like that I banned your friend? Tough. Don’t complain to me. I will do as I will to make this place the kind of party I want to attend, and that’s all that matters.

This law supercedes all other rules.

The Rules of Restraint

Threats. Threats of any kind of physical violence are forbidden. Threats of harrassment are forbidden. Implicit threats made by revealing commenters identity, address, email address, or place of work are absolutely forbidden. Arguments are confined to words only, right here, and not in the physical world. Violations of this rule will get you placed in the Dungeon.

Identity. We all know that anonymity can be abused, and that some people will turn into total assholes when unconstrained by accountability. Total anonymity is forbidden. However, I encourage and will protect pseudonyms, as long as you maintain a constant identity. Your online persona is accountable for your actions; I expect you to cultivate that identity, and maintain a recognizable and consistent pseudonym. One pseudonym; sockpuppetry will get you sent to the Dungeon. Stealing someone else’s pseudonym will also get you endungeoned.

No splash damage. I have no problem with insults (except, not in the Lounge!), and encourage everyone to use vigorous and creative language. Except…I insist that you be precise and focused. Stilettos, not shotguns. There are classes of insults that rely on broad spectrum stereotypes to be insulting: racist, sexist, ableist, ageist slurs don’t just hit your target, they hit everyone in that group. So when you slam Joe Schmoe for being “old”, you’re also slamming me, and we old people get tetchy and cranky about that sort of thing.

No motormouths. Look at your own pattern of behavior. If you find yourself taking up 20% or more of a thread; if every other comment is from you; if you find yourself making 3, 4, 5 comments in a row…you’re a boring ass. Shut up for a while. Let other people speak. Stop babbling, step back, write a longer comment offline, and think about it before you post it. Motormouths are either dangerously obsessed or are practicing a form of online harassment, and I will shut them down.

Transparency. Avoid speaking in code, as some people have been doing. A little rot13 to hide movie spoilers is fine, but scribbling away cryptically in a way that forces me to go to a specific website to decode what you’re saying makes my job of moderating comments harder, and also, keep in mind that a hundred thousand people visit this site every day. Most of them already ignore the comments, and the majority of the few that do delve deeper are going to just give up at the sight of nonsense strings. You really aren’t helping to make the discussions accessible. \

The Rules of Charity

Everyone gets three chances. If a new person shows up, give them three comments to make a case before you unlimber the artillery. I don’t care how stupid their arguments are, try the gentle art of persuasion first before you switch to the flamethrower of rhetorical annihilation. This one is tough to enforce because once the rule is broken, the victim is a crumbling pile of ash and nothing can be undone, so please try to give the new chewtoys a little break on your own. Think of it as a strategy for luring them deeper into the lair, if nothing else.

Reset. One persistent problem here is that the regulars develop a history, and at times, it is utterly stultifying. You don’t let grudges go, you resurrect long-dead arguments, you start citing passages from year-old comment threads. Stop it. It inhibits people from changing, and it poisons every discussion with ancient irritations that most people don’t know anything about. Every time I start a new thread, pretend I asked you to look into a little red light, and poof, everything is reset. Treat each comment as an argument unto itself. Linking to old comments to demonstrate the perfidy of a commenter, rather than linking to evidence to refute the commenter’s claims, will be regarded as an abuse of the principle of charity. I am aware that this rule could be abused by repetitious jackholes who make the same claims in every thread and then run away from your answers, but let me do the enforcement.

Point of clarification: Of course you aren’t going to forget everything: a known creationist should be remembered as a known creationist on a new thread. But you can try to approach their arguments from a new angle, and let go of acrimony from any previous thread.

ENFORCEMENT

Here’s something new: I’m appointing certain people to be monitors. They don’t get any special powers or privileges, except that I’ve created a special email filter so that if they write to me with a message that contains the word “alert” in the subject line, I’ll be much, much more likely to notice their complaint and will check out the problem. If you’re not a monitor and you see someone running amok on the threads, just make a comment that asks a monitor to send up a signal flare — this will improve the chances that it will come to my attention. If a monitor sends me a message, they should also leave a comment that I will be on my way as soon as possible.

Sometimes a thread gets terribly derailed by one offending jerk, and then it turns into a tangle of recrimination and finger-pointing. If you see that the bat-signal has been lit, calm down, and wait for the banhammer to come crashing down. You don’t need to rage about it endlessly.

PENALTIES

I’m implementing three levels of punishment.

Confinement to Thunderdome. Unruly and uncivilized individuals will be told they are only allowed to comment in the Thunderdome thread. Enforcement is voluntary; I don’t have a means in the software to restrict them. However, leaving the Thunderdome to taint other threads will result in instant Dungeon confinement. (Unfortunately, this usually means this punishment leads to endungeonment, because these individuals tend to have poor impulse control.)

Auto-moderation. These miscreants will have their names entered in the software graylist. What that means is that all of their comments will be automatically placed in the moderation queue, and won’t appear on the site until I’ve reviewed and approved them. That means it may be 24 hours or more before they get approved, because I am a lazy moderator. If I see that the comments improve and no longer demand my attention, I may remove the individual from auto-moderation.

Banning to the Dungeon. The Dungeon is my list of banned and blocked individuals. There is no reprieve. They simply don’t get to comment here, ever again.


In case you ever want to cite the laws at people, here are the handy-dandy formatted links to copy-paste as needed.

<a href=”http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#boss”>The Boss</a>

<a href=”http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#threats”>Threats</a>

<a href=”http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#identity”>Identity</a>

<a href=”http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#splashdamage”>Splash Damage</a>

<a href=”http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#motormouth”>Motormouth</a>

<a href=”http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#transparency”>Transparency</a>

<a href=”http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#three”>Three Chances</a>

<a href=”http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#reset”>Reset</a>

Comments

  1. says

    One of my computers logs me in automatically as DavidMHart; the other requires me to do so every time using facebook (as boselecta). This is annoying as it was never my intention to sockpuppet; I just got lazy at some point and clicked the ‘register via facebook’ option. Until I figure out how to undo that, boselecta and DavidMHart are the same person, just in case any accusations of sockpuppetry come my way.

  2. Pteryxx says

    Looks good IMHO. There may be the usual problem of civility masking intrusive JAQ’ing, but we’re pretty familiar with that pattern by now (and more importantly, so are you, boss.)

    One question… is it okay to continue using rot13 for triggering content as we have been, with a specific mention of what the encoding is for?

  3. Pteryxx says

    Oh… and thank you, Boss Poopyhead, for codifying all this and doing the thankless job alone for all these years. As you can see from last night for one, a bunch of us have hope because of this space.

  4. Doug Hudson says

    Awesome new rules. Of course, I’m in favor of any rules that include the THUNDERDOME!

  5. Rev. BigDumbChimp says

    The Dungeon is back (bwahahahahaha!).

    Are the furloughs revoked?

    No splash damage. I have no problem with insults (except, not in the Lounge!), and encourage everyone to use vigorous and creative language. Except…I insist that you be precise and focused. Stilettos, not shotguns. There are classes of insults that rely on broad spectrum stereotypes to be insulting: racist, sexist, ableist, ageist slurs don’t just hit your target, they hit everyone in that group. So when you slam Joe Schmoe for being “old”, you’re also slamming me, and we old people get tetchy and cranky about that sort of thing.

    Oh I see how it is. Us bald people get no respect.

    I kid.

  6. onion girl, OM; social workers do it with paperwork says

    Hail to the Overlord! :)

    And thank you for all the work you put into Pharyngula, we appreciate it greatly.

  7. Pteryxx says

    whoops… I do have another question. <_< About "Vent here" being for Thunderdome… I'm assuming that means personal attack type venting, while venting about the latest racist media gaffe or about personal stories for advice and support goes into Lounge, as is one of the functions of a safe space?

  8. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    *fifth try at posting, as work computer/internet connection is eating posts*

    Sound livable rules. Thanks for putting up with us PZ.

  9. carlie says

    Oh… and thank you, Boss Poopyhead, for codifying all this and doing the thankless job alone for all these years. As you can see from last night for one, a bunch of us have hope because of this space.

    What Pteryxx said, because I couldn’t say it any better.

  10. razzlefrog says

    Queston…how do we know if someone’s new, so we can humor the chewtoy like you suggested?

  11. says

    Thank you, PZ. It all sounds good to me. I appreciate all the work you put in, to say the very least. Also, Thunderdome, nice touch.

  12. Antiochus Epiphanes says

    Fair enough.

    You know I’d carry the ring to Mount Doom for you, right?

  13. Gregory Greenwood says

    Those seem like a good set of rules that should help out around here, Oh Most Gloriously Squidly One.

    My response shall be phrased in the fashion of the immortal words of the Cylons; by your command.

    If I may voice one tiny little moment of disappointment – when I read about the ‘Thunderdome’ thread, I had hoped it would be the kind of place where two trolls enter, but only one troll leaves…

    Oh well. You can’t have everything.

  14. Pteryxx says

    razzlefrog: generally the better memories among the Horde will make it clear. Otherwise, provisionally assume they may be new, perhaps?

  15. says

    Pteryxx:

    One question… is it okay to continue using rot13 for triggering content as we have been, with a specific mention of what the encoding is for?

    Pteryxx, personally, I’d prefer it if you didn’t use it outside of potential spoilers. I think putting *Trigger Warning* in bold on top of your post or something is adequate.

    The last round of rot13ed posts of yours, I simply skipped over. I’m not running off to translate stuff every other posts. Other people’s mileage may vary, but I find the rot13ed stuff annoying.

  16. says

    Pteryxx, personally, I’d prefer it if you didn’t use it outside of potential spoilers. I think putting *Trigger Warning* in bold on top of your post or something is adequate.

    The last round of rot13ed posts of yours, I simply skipped over. I’m not running off to translate stuff every other posts. Other people’s mileage may vary, but I find the rot13ed stuff annoying.

    Agreed. Rot13 is a great little thing, but it’s getting a little excessive lately. Let’s keep it for spoilers and use trigger warnings etc. for the rest.

  17. mythbri says

    @Pteryxx #26

    I would assume that the mindwipe makes everyone “new” for each thread. Give each commenter three posts to make their case, in each thread, and it won’t matter if they are really “new” or not.

  18. Pteryxx says

    Caine: I prefer rot13, obviously, but it’s something we all can discuss. Trigger warnings don’t always help me personally when I’m scrolling up and down among a discussion, for instance. Is it so annoying that skipping a rot13’d post is inadequate to deal with it?

  19. says

    Pteryxx:

    Is it so annoying that skipping a rot13′d post is inadequate to deal with it?

    Well, I find your posts to be valuable and interesting, so obviously, I would prefer to read them. I don’t have a problem skipping over rot13ed posts, however, you might keep in mind that you’re losing readers because of it.

    All that said, I think the fact that PZ doesn’t want posts in rot13 outside of spoilers and the like stands on its own.

  20. says

    Triggering stuff can be put in rot13. The general principle is to avoid making stuff inaccessible to casual reading.

    The dungeon escapees will be rounded up and shot later. I’m still traveling; I’m about to take a 5 hour shuttle ride home, I hope. It’s late already.

  21. KG says

    I third what Caine and pentatomid say about rot13.

    New Rules sound good – the one I’ll have trouble keeping is the “three chances”, but I think it’s a good one, encouraging creative responses even to the most hackneyed trolling.

  22. Pteryxx says

    I would assume that the mindwipe makes everyone “new” for each thread. Give each commenter three posts to make their case, in each thread, and it won’t matter if they are really “new” or not.

    … I hope it’s still possible to be warned who’s been a hateful rape-apologist trolling for triggers on other threads, for example, but maybe it’ll work out in practice. Currently I take cues from how willing the folks WITH memories are to engage, if someone doesn’t outright mention previous experience.

  23. Pteryxx says

    Thanks PZ, and thanks Caine. I’ll keep it in mind and try to keep rot13 exceptional or egregious.

  24. StevoR says

    Okay, PZ. Just seen this. Fair enough. Your blog, your rules, I’ll try to do the right thing by them.

    One question -if you make a comment, see and fix typos in that in asecond comemnt then think of something you forgot and justhave toadd doe sthatcountas beinga motiormouthor is that okay?

    I tend to, umm, how to put this, post in bursts. And, I’ll admit sometimes, (okay often) when I’m drunk and tired.

    I do try to make positive contributions here although, yeah, (mea culpa) I do get a bit het up & argumentative at times on issues I feel strongly about.

    P.S. How many links are we allowed in a comment, what’s teh rules there may I ask?

  25. StevoR says

    Dangnabbit! Typos. Oops. For clarity okay? :

    One question – if you make a comment, see and fix typos in that by making in a second typo-fixing comment then think of something you forgot and just have to add does that count as being a “motormouth” or is that okay?

    That first comment wasn’t intended to be an example. Sorry. Sigh.

    (This is why I personally much prefer an editing capability to a preview one. For some reason I never seem to see the typos until *after* I’ve clicked “submit comment. I do try.

  26. Janine: Fucking Dyke Of Rage Mountain says

    Oops, that should have been placed in the “fluffy bunny” thread.

  27. Rev. BigDumbChimp says

    I want to know who the class monitors are going to be.

    Listed at the dungeon link

  28. says

    PZ:

    However, I encourage and will protect pseudonyms, as long as you maintain a constant identity. Your online persona is accountable for your actions; I expect you to cultivate that identity, and maintain a recognizable and consistent pseudonym.

    Question! Is it safe to assume that changing the little, um, descriptors that a bunch of us use at the end of our ‘nyms isn’t going to fall under thus rule?

  29. carlie says

    Listed at the dungeon link

    *smacks self in head for not noticing*

    Okay, obviously I need more tea to fuel my ability to keep up.

    I have some special “get drunk on power” wine in the cellar for special occasions. Have a pint quart! ;)

  30. says

    Changing a bunch of adjectives associated with your name: no problem. Changing your name while keeping a minor descriptor: big problem.

    Just ask, if a newbie to pharyngula sees your old name on an old thread, and your new name on a new thread, would they be likely to think it’s the same person?

  31. says

    I have some special “get drunk on power” wine in the cellar for special occasions. Have a pint quart! ;)

    Hee. Thank you, Carlie.

  32. Janine: Fucking Dyke Of Rage Mountain says

    Question! Is it safe to assume that changing the little, um, descriptors that a bunch of us use at the end of our ‘nyms isn’t going to fall under thus rule?

    Audley, he said nothing about that practice, one that has been happening here for years. Just as long as those of us who engage in this keep our monikers recognizable, what is the problem?

  33. says

    We have no shortage of people who can be monitors here. No one should get the impression that they’re especially beloved if I put their name there, nor should they regard it as a rebuke if I cycle in new people.

    When I made the list, I just browsed recent commenters, picked some that were regulars, and also tried to hit Europeans and Australians as well as North Americans so I’m likely to get round-the-clock coverage.

  34. says

    PZ:

    No one should get the impression that they’re especially beloved if I put their name there, nor should they regard it as a rebuke if I cycle in new people.

    I would never assume, so no worries on that score. I am being happily amused, though, because all I can think about right now were the kids appointed class and hall monitors in Catholic school. I never was one, so this is kind of a kick, silly as that may be.

  35. AshPlant says

    Fuck my ears, but the new Dungeon is ugly. Who did your redecoration? That is one inhospitable pit of despair right there…

    …which I guess is kinda the point, but c’mon! Other people have to peek in there too!

  36. Janine: Fucking Dyke Of Rage Mountain says

    But Audley, why would PZ want to remove one of the small pleasures of this place. I happen to enjoy noting the changes within monikers and the reasons why they happen.

    Perhaps because I was one of the early practitioners of this habit.

  37. Louis says

    All seems sane and sensible enough to me.

    Apart from one thing: where’s my back door sooper sekrit password for ALL POWER? I mean monitors are one thing, but I didn’t become a 12 foot Space Lizard Acolyte for monitorship. I want to at least clean the blackboard. Or at least my Global Illuminatus fees refunded.

    ;-)

    Louis

  38. carlie says

    We have no shortage of people who can be monitors here. No one should get the impression that they’re especially beloved if I put their name there, nor should they regard it as a rebuke if I cycle in new people.

    So it’s more like being on KP duty rotation. :)

    I would never assume, so no worries on that score. I am being happily amused, though, because all I can think about right now were the kids appointed class and hall monitors in Catholic school. I never was one, so this is kind of a kick, silly as that may be.

    Hee. I missed out on being a hall monitor, because they were for sixth graders ONLY and I moved right before my sixth grade year (and of course at the new school, none of the teachers knew how good of a hall monitor I could be). And the monitors got to wear bright-orange safety sashes with a big badge on it, and tell the kindergartners when to cross the street, and…I never quite got over it.

  39. says

    Carlie:

    And the monitors got to wear bright-orange safety sashes with a big badge on it

    Ooooh, I want a sash with squid on it and an octopus badge!

  40. Menyambal --- Sambal's sockpuppet says

    PZ, thanks for the new rules, thanks for explaining them so well, and thanks for this site.

    I clocked in to check on Curiosity last night, and went to Bad Astronomy first. I came here later to enjoy the celebration, and found a long, dragging snarlfest. I went back to the BA. I came here just now thinking about begging people to observe a rule of three—if they aren’t listening after three incisive comments, give it up—and here PZ has done all I could wish.

    Thank the facially-tentacled one. (And I don’t mean Zoidberg.)

  41. Esteleth, Who Knows How to Use Google says

    Ooooh, I want a sash with squid on it and an octopus badge!

    … so sew them, o needled one!

    (can I have one too?)

  42. strange gods before me ॐ says

    Changing a bunch of adjectives associated with your name: no problem. Changing your name while keeping a minor descriptor: big problem.

    Just ask, if a newbie to pharyngula sees your old name on an old thread, and your new name on a new thread, would they be likely to think it’s the same person?

    In that case, I’m going to use my canonical form.

    (sg and sgbm are inevitably used by regulars, regardless of my nym, so this will be the least confusing for newbies.)

  43. says

    Pteryxx:

    Is it so annoying that skipping a rot13′d post is inadequate to deal with it?

    It’s extremely annoying. You have to constantly toggle back and forth between the Pharyngula page and the translator, which slows your reading way down. It’s hard enough to keep up with the flow of comments here.

    The only site that relies on rot13 as a rule is the Slacktiverse (see comments), and that should tell you something. Every other site that uses trigger warnings simply puts in a bold warning at the top.

    The rules overall seem reasonable enough, but the one about splash damage leads me to ask whether, for example, “stupid” will be banned for being “ableist.” IMHFO, that would be idiotic and moronic. So would be, for example, banning the word “brat” for being “hate speech against children.” Same deal with stating that children and teenagers usually do not have the life experience nor the cognitive development to be treated socially or legally as adults. I’ve seen this called “ageist” as well.

    Sorry if this has been discussed over the last week. I’ve been AWOL for a number of reasons, some of which aren’t related to FTB at all.

  44. opposablethumbs says

    Thank you PZ for keeping this place up and running. It’s a pretty special place on the net, and important to a lot of people in all sorts of ways.

    Well you already knew that, obvs., but what the hell – it bears repeating.

  45. ChasCPeterson says

    I will be restarting TET
    TET will become [Lounge]

    It should have started with [Lounge #1] then.
    It’s not the same Thread.

    Avoid speaking in code

    Anybody going to spill the beans out of the catbag re: the other common method of (almost totally harmless) pseudo-sekrit messaging? It seems clearly to violate the spirit of the no-codes Rule.

    mindwipe

    I think it’s silly to expect people to do this. Enforce consistent nyms but people are supposed to forget previous comments? The human brain is evolved specifically to excel at just the opposite task. (Yes, that’s evolutionary psychology right there.) I don’t see how it can work, unless the rule is specific to not linking old comments.

    (these are supposed to be remarks, not ‘grievances’)

  46. Sili says

    if you find yourself making 3, 4, 5 comments in a row…you’re a boring ass.

    Ooops …

    (Also: What the hell?)

  47. says

    Esteleth:

    … so sew them, o needled one!

    (can I have one too?)

    I don’t have enough to do already? Oy. ;) If they ever see the light of day, yes, you may have one too.

    Must have octopus hat! Must.

  48. Esteleth, Who Knows How to Use Google says

    Caine:

    Must have octopus hat! Must.

    …a friend of mine has a knitting pattern for one. Shall I add one for you to my knitting queue?

  49. says

    Esteleth:

    …a friend of mine has a knitting pattern for one. Shall I add one for you to my knitting queue?

    Oooh, shiny!* Yes, please. Pretty please with a tentacle on top.

    *Firefly shiny.

  50. Rev. BigDumbChimp says

    The only thing I’m ‘afeared of is anytime a disagreement starts in any thread that there will be calls of TAKE IT TO THE THUNDERDOME!!! when arguing on threads seemingly isn’t the issue. It’s other things that are bi-products of disagreements.

    Not every single disagreement has to be banished to the Thunderdome.

    amirite?

  51. Esteleth, Who Knows How to Use Google says

    OK, Caine. Will do.
    You’re in the queue after the DarkFetus’ blankie. Which I swear, will actually get done at some point. I’ve been working on it since Audley announced, and it is an inch wide.

  52. Esteleth, Who Knows How to Use Google says

    The blankie, not the DarkFetus. Audley’s what, 7 months along? The DF is probably a bit wider than an inch.

  53. says

    Esteleth:

    I’ve been working on it since Audley announced, and it is an inch wide.

    Don’t feel bad. I’ve been working on The Darkheart Duckie Project for ages and I’m nowhere close to finishing.

  54. Antiochus Epiphanes says

    I’ve been working on it since Audley announced, and it is an inch wide.

    Yeah, but how long?

  55. says

    Rev. BDC:

    Not every single disagreement has to be banished to the Thunderdome.

    amirite?

    Yeah, you’re right. As long as an argument or disagreement stays on point in the lounge, I think it’s fine. As for other threads, same thing. It’s when something goes personal or is tangential to the topic or completely off the topic I think it should go to Thunderdome. At least, I hope I have that right.

  56. says

    “mindwipe” renamed to “reset” to avoid scary implications. Also clarified that you’re not supposed to forget everything about every commenter, but reset those grudges and move on.

  57. Esteleth, Who Knows How to Use Google says

    Antiochus:

    Yeah, but how long?

    About a foot and a half. Which is how wide it will be when done. It will be square.

  58. pseudoniemousie says

    ” Implicit threats made by revealing commenters identity, address, email address, or place of work are absolutely forbidden”

    My reading is that this rule will not apply to Thunderdome — is that correct?

    Because in my opinion it would be worth it to have said restriction, simply because of the real-world implications that could follow; if someone is “outed” on the internet the harm is not really going to be mitigated by it having been in some sort of no-holds-barred comment thread.

  59. Janine: Fucking Dyke Of Rage Mountain says

    My reading is that this rule will not apply to Thunderdome — is that correct?

    Great. Will the “fun” soon start?

  60. Antiochus Epiphanes says

    Esteleth and Caine: I gutted a bathroom a year ago, and have only gotten as far as drywall.

    Everyone in my house has to go real bad.

    Chas, if you are still around–did you happen to collect plants in Culberson County, TX, in 1987?

  61. 00001000bit says

    Has something changed in code recently? It seems the stories take a long time to show up in the RSS feed (at least through Google Reader).

    I haven’t noticed it with other FTB bloggers I follow, but it may just be they post fewer times a day so it isn’t as apparent.

  62. Manu of Deche says

    First, thanks a lot PZ for letting us have one of the best places on the Net that I know of. And for the new set of rules and clarifications.

    But:

    AshPlant @ 61
    Fuck my ears, but the new Dungeon is ugly. Who did your redecoration? That is one inhospitable pit of despair right there…

    …which I guess is kinda the point, but c’mon! Other people have to peek in there too!

    Seconded. Would it be possible to make it a little less trippy? It actually made me quite dizzy after scrolling through most of it. Something about the yellow/red text on grey ground in the Purgatory threw my visual cortex off balance.

  63. Antiochus Epiphanes says

    To any of you who are offended by the new Dungeon layout:

    How on earth did you survive the 70s?

  64. says

    The New Dungeon is intentionally retro and ugly. Look up Tim Skirvin’s Killfile Dungeon sometime — the dungeon isn’t my idea, it has some usenet history behind it.

  65. says

    AE:

    To any of you who are offended by the new Dungeon layout:

    How on earth did you survive the 70s?

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!

    Ohhhhh. Hahahahaha. Hee.

    :thud:

    I think they must all be youngsters, AE.

  66. says

    ”Implicit threats made by revealing commenters identity, address, email address, or place of work are absolutely forbidden”

    My reading is that this rule will not apply to Thunderdome — is that correct?

    As the thread descriptions are written right now, yes, but PZ also writes that he will protect pseudonyms, which obviously means that he will not allow people to out anyone.

    What’s more, PZ has always had a very strong policy on this area, and I think it is highly unlikely to change now (it was, after all, the only rule enforced during the no-rule period).

  67. Pierce R. Butler says

    Our esteemed host is omnipotent, yet lazy.

    That should keep sophisticated theologians busy for generations!

  68. dancaban says

    Change is good. Order from chaos. But like me tidying up the kids toy box at the weekend, let’s see how long it lasts.

  69. pseudoniemousie says

    Kristjan Wager @101 :

    What’s more, PZ has always had a very strong policy on this area, and I think it is highly unlikely to change now (it was, after all, the only rule enforced during the no-rule period).

    I’m glad to hear that! The rules “as written” definitely didn’t seem consistent with my understanding of how this site has generally been moderated.

  70. Antiochus Epiphanes says

    I think they must all be youngsters, AE.

    How pleasant it must be to have childhood memories that aren’t visually garish.

    Seriously. I never saw the color red as a child unless it was accompanied my mustard yellow. We had a station wagon that was called “avocado” until the avocados objected to the misappropriation.

    I had maroon, bell-bottom, corduroys, that my mother liked to pair with a powder-blue turtleneck and brown vest.

    Yup. You youngsters got it good nowadays. PZ must really think the sun shines out of your asses to have made such a lovely and visually pleasing dungeon. Now, go play.

  71. says

    ”Implicit threats made by revealing commenters identity, address, email address, or place of work are absolutely forbidden”

    My reading is that this rule will not apply to Thunderdome — is that correct?

    No. Threats like that will get dealt with promptly. The thunderdome does not imply that you get to go set someone’s house on fire.

    Also, just participating in the thunderdome does not mean you’ve got complete carte blanche. Thunderdome was rigged, remember? You can go beyond the pale there, and I will ban people for particularly egregious behavior. Stormfront doesn’t get to colonize it, for instance.

  72. Janine: Fucking Dyke Of Rage Mountain says

    I, too, have memories of bell-bottoms and corduroy.

    Are suppressing the memories of velour?

    Were the seventies tacky because of Richard Nixon?

  73. dinamalar says


    If a new person shows up, give them three comments to make a case before you unlimber the artillery

    Seriously people, all you disciples of PZ have that much time to drone on comments. If I want to refute I usually write a reply with clear statements, then I will move on, goshh, its so pathetic that bothering about why others are not changing their mind on freaking internet blogging comment sections.

    Why can’t just move on people ? Ahh, you have an excuse, the other guy doesn’t, that’s why, right ?
    “Mommy, wait, someone on the internet is wrong here “

    Goshhhhhhhh.

  74. says

    #105: I had paisley polyester shirts. I owned bell bottoms wide enough I could put my head and shoulders in the cuffs. I wore a leisure suit on dates.

    If I had a time-machine, I’d stop off in 1972 on my way to the paleocene just so I could drop off a load of sensible clothing.

  75. Amblebury says

    I can’t express my appreciation without getting verbose and scmaltzy. So I’m sending it through brain-wave telepathicosity!






    Nuthin’?

    ;)

    Thank you.

  76. Janine: Fucking Dyke Of Rage Mountain says

    PZ, I know that at one point, you have a Lemmy mustache going. But did you ever have a perm?

  77. says

    How on earth did you survive the 70s?

    I faintly recall shitting in my pants, and eventually learning not to do so. I’d call that a successful decade.

  78. Janine: Fucking Dyke Of Rage Mountain says

    I faintly recall shitting in my pants, and eventually learning not to do so. I’d call that a successful decade.

    Shit, I had that down by the late sixties.

  79. carlie says

    I faintly recall shitting in my pants, and eventually learning not to do so. I’d call that a successful decade.

    I did so as well, but then proceeded to wear things like orange pants with pink shirts. Thanks for letting me leave the house that way, MOM.

  80. says

    I faintly recall shitting in my pants, and eventually learning not to do so. I’d call that a successful decade.

    Shit, I had that down by the late sixties.

    You must have been an early learner. :)

  81. Janine: Fucking Dyke Of Rage Mountain says

    I did so as well, but then proceeded to wear things like orange pants with pink shirts.

    The horror.
    The horror.

  82. says

    PZ:

    I had paisley polyester shirts. I owned bell bottoms wide enough I could put my head and shoulders in the cuffs. I wore a leisure suit on dates.

    Oh ick. I wouldn’t be caught dead in polyester. Not then, not now.

    I miss my India Cotton granny dresses! Ooops, did I type that out loud?

  83. says

    Janine:

    Just so you youngster know what Caine is talking about.

    Oh, um, no. Mine were never that ugly. Nice India batik print, halter style long dresses were much more my thing. I did have a fair amount of Gunne Sax back in the ’70s, though.

  84. chigau (loyal NCO) says

    dinamalar

    …I usually write a reply with clear statements…

    Starting when?

  85. Janine: Fucking Dyke Of Rage Mountain says

    Sorry, Caine. While a lot of music that I love come from the seventies (Big surprise there.) I do not have the same fond memories of the seventies. Shit, I would rather have the big shoulder pads of the eighties over just about anything from that time.

    Trying to keep memories suppressed.

  86. Janine: Fucking Dyke Of Rage Mountain says

    ‘Tis, you had to pull out that eye sore.

    Keep this up and I will start linking to the worst songs of the seventies. And the old timers here know I can and will do it.

  87. chigau (loyal NCO) says

    Caine

    I miss my India Cotton granny dresses!

    I don’t miss mine.
    They’re in my closet and I wear them when I must wear something not-jeans.

  88. AshPlant says

    The seventies??! …I don’t know whether to be complimented or offended by the presumption that I reached thirty at any point.

  89. SteveV says

    I pitched up at a (notoriously uptight) clients office in the early 80s wearing an orange and striped tee, white jeans and red Kickers (yellow laces, natch)
    It was like that scene in a western, where the stranger walks into the saloon and everyone, including the piano player falls silent.

  90. Crudely Wrott says

    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

  91. Janine: Fucking Dyke Of Rage Mountain says

    SteveV, I think a more time appropriate reference would be Footloose.

  92. Feats of Cats says

    The html tags are sort of confusing, as there’s like five different ways to cite things, and regular [blockquote] isn’t even listed. Is there a way to do better paragraph breaks? I feel very wall-of-texty whenever I try and do multiple sections like this.

    Moreover, I accidentally stuck my hand into a running fan last night and it hurts to type. Can you do something about that, too?

  93. Feats of Cats says

    Shit, I meant that in the grievances thread. Fuck me for having multiple tabs open.

  94. Crudely Wrott says

    Just to clarify, Thank You, Dear Poopyhead.

    I’d like to start reading everyone’s comments again without feeling as if I walked into a riot. (I have lately just been scanning quickly.)

    There are so many wonderful, clever, well spoken people here and I feel like I know some of them very well. I often feel very comfortable, as if I’d walked into my favorite saloon and found it full of friends.

    I very much want that kind of feeling to continue.

    Sometimes rules suck but it is obvious that some rules are necessary.

    To all, peace and warmth with hopes to learn and grow through useful and productive intercourse.

  95. chigau (loyal NCO) says

    Crudely Wrott
    Hi!
    How’s things?

    Feats of Cats
    stuck your hand in a running fan?
    hahahaha you knob!
    (This comes from someone who once stuck her head in a running ceiling fan.)

  96. Feats of Cats says

    Yup. I thought it was falling out of the window and tried to catch it–the grate on the front was off. This is from the same person who managed to stab a long, emo-looking gash into her wrist with a (clean) pipette tip when she dropped the pipette like two inches onto the bench and tried to catch it.

  97. Crudely Wrott says

    @ chigau

    Hi! to you. I am well though circumstances of late have been poor. Plans fallen to the ground, promises broken, that sort of thing.

    Right now I’m off to Eldest Daughter’s house with ice cream for Grandsons and lots of excitement to share with them about the landing of Curiosity! Should be a happy evening.

    See you ’round. ;-)

  98. chigau (loyal NCO) says

    jeez Alethea, I was trying to maintain a low profile.
    (hence the new extension on my ‘nym)

  99. A. R says

    Hmmm, what shall I do first with my new-found powers of e-mailing PZ… Anyway thanks for the New Rules PZ!

  100. Usernames are smart says

    Confinement to Thunderdome. Unruly and uncivilized individuals will be told they are only allowed to comment in the Thunderdome thread. Enforcement is voluntary; I don’t have a means in the software to restrict them.

    (emphasis mine)

    Challenge: Accepted!

    Contest ends: 0130 CDT, 2012Aug07

    Difficulty: Moderately hard; no beer in house, so Ballmer Peak is flat :(

    See you on the other side!

  101. McC2lhu does not have gerseberms says

    I saw this coming a hundred miles away with a police escort and trumpeteers blowing fanfare. It’s PZ’s weblog and it’s his reputation at stake regarding the content, even of the perceived substance of the comments. At times, I would have been frustrated, embarrassed or vehemently PO’d if I was the weblog owner, so I had to think the only answer was formulating changes and see how effective they are. I’m guessing that this means PZ is a scientist of some sort. Does biology cover sociology and psychology?

  102. twincats says

    But Audley, why would PZ want to remove one of the small pleasures of this place. I happen to enjoy noting the changes within monikers and the reasons why they happen.

    Perhaps because I was one of the early practitioners of this habit.

    I have always found this habit to be kind of awesome and always look forward to new descriptors on familiar ‘nyms.

    I don’t do it myself because first, I’m more of a lurker and second, I’m lazy.

    My snazziest threads from the 70’s were two identical outfits: brushed demin hiphugger bellbottoms with matching short-sleeved sweaters. One set was orange and the other was purple. They made 8th grade awesome! Also, remember Dittos? Those high-waisted jeans with the seam that went up the back of the legs and framed the butt? I LOVED those!

  103. neuralobserver says

    Myers,…your ‘New Rules’…kind of a day late and a dollar short, don’t you think?

  104. says

    Even with the clarifications, the Reset thing is worded oddly and conceived badly, in my opinion. It’s pretty incompatible with the Identity rule.

    If the source of my grievance with someone from a previous thread is that they made bad arguments and were stubborn about it, you better believe that’s part of their online identity, and I will want to call them out about it when they start the same pattern in another thread.

    Not hounding people based on previous disagreements feels like it falls under the harassment rule, without any need for a confusing reset rule.

  105. 'Tis Himself says

    Naked Bunny with a Whip #149

    Also the early bird gets the worm and it’s the second mouse who gets the cheese.

  106. chigau (loyal NCO) says

    “The second mouse gets the cheese.” is in the same category as “I don’t need to outrun the bear, I just need to outrun you.”
    Don’t turn your back on those people.
    —-
    Naked Bunny
    tsk
    and
    har

  107. Colin J says

    I want to question the RESET rule. You justify it with examples of dredging things up from a year or more ago and that’s definitely a bad thing. But insisting that each thread is a new start is taking things too far. There have been plenty of dishonest arseholes who have popped from thread to thread “only asking questions”. I have found it very useful when other people have pointed out that a vaguely naïve/stupid sounding poster has actually been shitting all over threads I haven’t been following.

    Any statements made in the last… say, 7 days(?) should be fair game. Provided the poster hasn’t publicly retracted them.

    Maybe that would be too complicated to enforce strictly. Perhaps there should be a “But they said it recently” defence to breaches of the Reset rule.

  108. says

    (OT)
    E,

    The blankie, not the DarkFetus. Audley’s what, 7 months along? The DF is probably a bit wider than an inch.

    Damn, you’re good! I start my 7th month this week. And yes, the DF is quite large at this point.

    (WARNING: icky preggo details)

    Sometimes she does this thing where she presses against my stomach wall and you can see and feel how big she is quite clearly. It’s awesome and creepy all at the same time.

  109. Colin J says

    Fuck my ears, but the new Dungeon is ugly. Who did your redecoration? That is one inhospitable pit of despair right there…

    …which I guess is kinda the point, but c’mon! Other people have to peek in there too!

    The New Dungeon is intentionally retro and ugly.

    Come on – it’s not like any of the denizens actually spend time there. I like to wander into the Dungeon on a slow day and see if I’ve missed any excitement. As a connoisseur of the freak show I demand more comfort!

    …please?

  110. says

    Rev @82:
    Oh come on, are you honestly saying you’re not looking forward to being able to shout “TAKE IT TO THE THUNDERDOME!!!” at people?

    …I mean, yeah. Point taken and all.

    But… “TAKE IT TO THE THUNDERDOME!!!”

  111. hotshoe says

    Ooh, me likey. All of it.

    This is going to be great!

    Cheers for the new reign of our Overlord.

  112. chigau (loyal NCO) says

    If we’re going to yell TAKE IT TO THE THUNDERDOME, we™ should provide a link.
    How do I link to the top of the current Thunderdome as opposed to a specific comment?

  113. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    How do I link to the top of the current Thunderdome as opposed to a specific comment?

    Click on the OP title, and do a copypasta, like this: THUNDERDOME.

  114. chigau (loyal NCO) says

    Thanks Nerd.
    That’s easy.
    How is the Redhead doing?
    (you could answer in the Lounge, I’m sure we all want to know)

  115. Wowbagger, Titillated Victorian Gentleman says

    Anyway, yay that some kind of order has been restored. While I don’t frequent this place quite as much as I once did, it’s still good to come back to it – though I’m a little sadness that it appears to have come at the cost of losing some people that I like.

    But I remain optimistic they’ll be back…

  116. tim rowledge, Ersatz Haderach says

    In re. DarkFetus etc –

    About a foot and a half. Which is how wide it will be when done. It will be square.

    Good grief; has anyone warned Audley? That’s going to be painful

  117. ChasCPeterson says

    did you happen to collect plants in Culberson County, TX, in 1987?

    What an unusual question.
    Herbarium tag, I take it?
    Nope.

    (I do know your chair, though. Or I think he is or was. WL.)

    Does biology cover sociology and psychology?

    Isn’t that the last line of Sociobiology? Something like that?

  118. lpetrich says

    If you have Firefox, you can do ROT13 in place with the LeetKey add-on (addons.mozilla.org). Select some text, then do

    (make popup menu on the selection) > LeetKey > Text Transformers > ROT13

  119. krubozumo says

    Myers, good show, this was wanted. Not your fault of course, an organic thing like a blog tends to get unruly despite constraints but frankly, I have to say these conscriptions you have imposed are not only useful but essential to preserving the ultimate utility of your efforts here – namely constructive conversations.

    And I have great admiration for you efforts, they are certainly beyond the pale of most academics else the the blogosphere would not be such a wasteland of ill-considered, or mal-considered opinions masquerading as some kind of authority.

    In any case, I will still pay attention. As a geologist I really don’t have a lot to contribute to what goes on here as a rule, but I am always pleased to learn more about fields beyond my ken.

    See you in the quantum vacuum. [yes that was snark].

  120. says

    PZ, the «handy-dandy formatted» links suffer from two problems: 1. HTML needs straight, “typewriter” quotes — not curly ones (“these”, not “these”), and 2. there’s and extra slash before each hash.

  121. says

    WordPress has a nasty habit of putting curly quotes where you don’t want them. Should be fixable for those links by wrapping them in
    <code></code>

  122. says

    I meant "these", not “these” — they need to escaped with NRCs or some such, like this " &#34; ".

    (Of course WordPress assumes the user is a moron and applies “smart quotes” even to txts where both kinds of quote moarks are used. And of course I didn’t notice it in the preview…)

  123. Colin J says

    Colin J, it’s dangerous to go alone. Take this comforter.

    I’ve always thought of my trips to the Dungeon as something like a Victorian gentleman paying his shilling for a tour of the asylum. I’m there to be shocked, but I’d rather not have to deal with the smell.

    I’d hate people to think I’m just complaining, though. Good on you, PZ for the new rules. I love structure; I love rules. I deal with rules for a living. Seriously: my job title has the word “rules” in it.

  124. Azkyroth, Former Growing Toaster Oven says

    if you find yourself making 3, 4, 5 comments in a row…you’re a boring ass.

    Or someone who reads quickly, occasionally comes back to comment threads with dozens or hundreds of comments to browse through, and tends to find that the page occasionally refreshes and what they’ve typed in the comment box, and then gone back to read more posts before they post to see if they want to add replies to anyone else, gets lost.

    That said, if it’s a problem to our host, I can certainly make the effort of opening a text editor window that has a much lower chance of losing my partial reply, then post my response to a thread I’m catching up to as one long comment.

  125. FossilFishy (Νεοπτόλεμος's spellchecker) says

    I had a dream the other night, it was strange dream, unprecedented, or so I thought. I was smuggling a suitcase containing 12kg of Higgs Bosons. That was it, no backstory at all, I didn’t know where I got them, where I was taking them, or even why they would be contraband. What was I to do with such a random and seemingly meaningless burbelling of my subconscious? Why, check my Skeptic’s Dream Dictionary of course!

    [Goes to pull down the 1500 pg tome, re-considers, gets step stool and uses two hands]

    *flip, flip, flip*

    Ooh, bigfoot!

    “Bigfoot dreams show a longing for the past, for some mythical golden age where the dividing line between right and wrong was clear and unambiguous.”

    Huh, I did not know that.

    *flip, flip, flip*

    Darkmatter? Wow, I thought I was the only one….

    “Darkmatter indicates a deep, almost pathological, fear of losing single socks in the wash.”

    Huh, what? I don’t…..never mind.

    *flip, flip, flip*

    Elevators? No, no, no! Don’t want to know…

    [hastily]*flip, flip, flip!*

    Ah here we are…

    “Higgs-Bosons. Dreams of the so-called “God Particle” are the subconscious’ way of indicating distress at a lack of control.”

    Interesting.

    “To be carrying Higgs-Bosons indicates that the dreamer believes that they are solely responsible for things getting out of control regardless of their actual degree of culpability.”

    Huh.

    “And doing so in a secretive manner indicates an insecurity about the ethical nature of their role.”

    What?

    “The quantity of Bosons carried is significant. For instance, 12kg would mean that the dreamer feels that this lack of control is likely to lead to fundamental negative changes, an Armageddon-like event as it were.”

    Wow, that’s very…specific…?

    “The dreamer needs to keep in mind that things change, even things that they love, even communities that they love. “

    What the fuck?

    “But they need to know, you need to know, that change is rarely entirely good or entirely bad.”

    This is seriously creeping me out…

    “No, it’s okay, really. As a wise man once said: ‘Don’t panic.’”

    But, but, I’m worried, I’m scared. There are people whose voices I value who have been hurt by this. They say they’re never coming back.

    “That’s their choice. They have that right and it’s not your place to question their motivations. There is very few choices more subjective in the world than the where individuals choose to voluntarily spend time.”

    But what if they’re right? What if these all of this was unfair?

    “That is a decision for each individual to make. Do you really expect that there’s one solution that will resolve every issue that a huge, diverse community has? This is the problem with you humans, you’re so damned different one to the next despite all having the same basic needs and wants. I mean look at me, a dream dictionary, you’d think that I’d say the same things about the same subjects as every other dream dictionary. But no, no I don’t! Go look up pelicans in The Big Book of Dreams, go on I’ll wait… There, you see, they have an entry on pelicans, how stupid is that? Dreaming of pelicans doesn’t mean a damn thing except maybe you ate some bad fish, but one of you humans decided that it did and so we get this discrepancy. It’s enough to fox my endpapers it is!”

    Woah there! Calm down.

    “Sorry, got a bit carried away.”

    S’okay. You’ve given me a lot to think about, but I have to say I’m more confused now than I was before. What am I going to do?

    “How the fuck should I know? I’m just an imaginary book you, pardon the expression, dreamed up.”

    You’ve been doing pretty good so far.

    “Fine. Do what you humans always do.”
    “Survive.”
    “Learn.”
    “Adapt.”
    “Thrive.”
    “Do the best you can, as compassionately as you can, and it’ll all work out.”
    [Looks up from book]
    Fuck, I hope so.

  126. csmiller says

    boselect @1 – Try deleting all the cookies on the machine that is autologging you in.

  127. says

    FossilFishy:

    Fuck, I hope so.

    Everything will be fine. Some people will have to have hissy fits for a while; others will have be rules lawyers for a bit; others need to make much more of this than is needed; others need to hunt every nit, and on and on and on it goes. We still have our community, that’s the important bit.

    People. What are ya gonna do?

  128. opposablethumbs says

    Hey, FossilFishy. You have amazing dream recall – and an impressive bookshelf! ;-)

  129. says

    Wheeeee. Harsh rules at last!

    I’m DanDare here, and at RatSkep and AFA and, well lots of places, with variations on the same avatar. Which is sad because I don’t get whipped into submission now. :(

  130. aspidoscelis says

    Antiochus Epiphanes, 92 –

    That was Charles D. Peterson, who was curator at the Spring Branch Science Center herbarium in Houston until 1994. The institution has since been renamed; it is now the Robert A. Vines Environmental Science Center. The current curator is Larry Brown.

    Looking at specimens at TEX?

  131. says

    [meta] This comment will probably go into automoderation for the number of links, but I’m just going to wrap the New Rules Shortcut Links from the OP in a non-link-breaking curly/smart-quote-free way, wrapped by *code* tags, for the benefit of those who might like to copy them to a text editor of their choice:

    <a href="http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#boss">The Boss</a>

    <a href="http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#threats">Threats</a>

    <a href="http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#identity">Identity</a>

    <a href="http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#splashdamage">Splash Damage</a>

    <a href="http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#motormouth">Motormouth</a>

    <a href="http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#transparency">Transparency</a>

    <a href="http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#three">Three Chances</a>

    <a href="http://freethoughtblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/08/06/the-new-rules/#reset">Reset</a>

    Also for those who find HTML formatting tricky, I have a collection of useful how-to links at tigtog.net

  132. FossilFishy (Νεοπτόλεμος's spellchecker) says

    Caine:

    People. What are ya gonna do?

    Heh, Six words to teal deer that whole mess of mine. :)

    OP: My bookshelves are carbon nano tube planks supported by titanium hardware, nothing less will take the awesome heft of my collection. That said, I actually did dream about smuggling 12kg of Higgs Bosons. I’m pretty sure my brain joined a Dada collective some time in the eighties.

  133. says

    Thanks for these rules, PZ!

    However, I’d like to have some clarification about the reset rule: I do understand “hold no grudges from previous conversations”, and that is totally sensible.

    But what if I know a certain poster to be in favour of genocide. This will inform my impression of that poster on other somewhat related topics too, I couldn’t totally ignore that… Of course if that poster had changed their position I’d also be able to let it go, but as long as they hold that position, it will negatively affect how I view that person, namely as a vile human being.

  134. carlie says

    Seriously: my job title has the word “rules” in it.

    I want one of those!

    But what if I know a certain poster to be in favour of genocide. This will inform my impression of that poster on other somewhat related topics too, I couldn’t totally ignore that…

    I of course don’t know for sure, but I think it’s more along the lines of when there’s a discussion of 70s colors, and that person says they like the green/blue combo, you don’t say “You like green and blue together? Do you like it as much as the genocide you advocate for, you heartless monster?” and do that every time they comment on anything.

  135. Sili says

    krubozumo,

    In any case, I will still pay attention. As a geologist I really don’t have a lot to contribute to what goes on here as a rule, but I am always pleased to learn more about fields beyond my ken.

    Don’t be silly. We’ve been short a geologist since Josh left.

    What can you tell us about Teh Flud™?

  136. Sili says

    “don’t mention the war! I mentioned it once, but I think I got away with it all right.”

    I was just wondering yesterday, when we should stop commemorating it. 100 years is admittedly a nice round number, but celebrate anything for a hundred years and it’s been that way forever. I suppose the death of the last ‘guerillas’ will be the most logical occasion, but of course the tradition is already so ingrained that a new generation of xenophobes are ready to make political hay of any attempt to change the status quo.

  137. Sili says

    when there’s a discussion of 70s colors, and that person says they like the green/blue combo

    You know who else liked green and blue?

    HITLER!

  138. says

    Well, I actually wouldn’t want to casually interact with a poster espousing such views, but I probably would not want to derail a thread about colours with it, but probably also not in the Lounge. But say if the poster was claiming outrage say at misogyny in some other thread, I’d certainly like to show them the mirror.

    So this is why I’m asking for clarification.

  139. nms says

    Rather than using rot13 it would be possible to impress the abbr or acronym tags into that role like this (mouse over for spoilers), though doing so could reduce the accessibility of the site and lead to some very surprised text-to-speech users.

  140. ecchymosis says

    Following Camels With Hammers’ lead? Bravo! Civilized discourse should be a hallmark of rational thinking people; why is it not already?

  141. ChasCPeterson says

    just curious as to whether we should expect any sort of response to the Grievance-Airing thread?

  142. David Marjanović says

    Ooh! Sniny new dungeon! ♥

    I think I’ll find the new rules easy to deal with; I seem to be rather unusually good at the “reset” thing…

    The rotating monitors are a very good idea.

    *ponders whether to threaten the Vile Human Being with violence*
    *decides not to, out of fear of The Rules*

    To any of you who are offended by the new Dungeon layout:

    How on earth did you survive the 70s?

    Die Gnade der späten Geburt, the mercy of late birth. </Godwin> What Caine said: I, for one, survived the 70s the same way I survived the K-Pg boundary mass extinction! Other people (or vaguely tree-shrew-like entities) did it for me!

    The 70s have been called “an epoch characterized by brutal ugliness” by an Austrian news magazine.

    I had maroon, bell-bottom, corduroys, that my mother liked to pair with a powder-blue turtleneck and brown vest.

    *inarticulate drawn-out scream*

    I’ve had corduroys, even brown ones. (Some were, indeed, green, but a very dark green; probably that’s not what Jadehawk was talking about.) But bell-bottoms, thankfully, had absolutely vanished from the face of the Earth by my time.

    So had hip-huggers as far as I can tell. That was very fortunate for my anatomy. Nowadays it’s difficult to even find pants for me…

    I do have memories of unpleasant combinations of ugly red and ugly blue and ugly white. The 80s were an aftermath, if you know what I mean.

    How pleasant it must be to have childhood memories that aren’t visually garish.

    geocities.

    I had little exposure to the Internet till 2000. :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) I’ve seen just enough of Geocities to know what you mean!

    Why can’t just move on people ? Ahh, you have an excuse, the other guy doesn’t, that’s why, right ?

    Someone seems to be laboring under the assumption that the Internet isn’t Serious Business.

    Someone would appear to be wrong.

    …on the Internet.

    If I had a time-machine […] on my way to the paleocene

    ♥ You have exceptionally good taste in epochs!!!

    The horror.
    The horror.

    Wise words.

    When I was in high school my favorite shirt was a madras shirt similar to this only more gaudy [link withheld].

    OMFSM.

    I had a matching tie to go with it.

    *thud*

    I pitched up at a (notoriously uptight) clients office in the early 80s wearing an orange and striped tee, white jeans and red Kickers (yellow laces, natch)
    It was like that scene in a western, where the stranger walks into the saloon and everyone, including the piano player falls silent.

    I showed this to Sister 2. Her words:

    “My god. No. No.
    [pause]
    [laughter]”

    Excellent…only eight commandments! Most lesser deities require at least ten!

    Thread won.

    Don’t be silly. We’ve been short a geologist since Josh left.

    What can you tell us about Teh Flud™?

    All seconded.

    You know who else liked green and blue?

    I’m sure he much preferred brown… and black…

    Following Camels With Hammers’ lead? Bravo! Civilized discourse should be a hallmark of rational thinking people; why is it not already?

    :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D :-D

    Read the post again. This time for understanding. :-) And go to more scientific conferences, parties after thesis defenses, and the like. *pats on ecchymosis’ shoulder*

    Flud? what flud?

    Teh Flud™.

    Noah’s.

  143. David Marjanović says

    Ooh! Sniny new dungeon! ♥

    …And then I completely forgot to mention how delightfully sniny it is that John A. Davison is dead and still in the dungeon, just like how Kim Il-sung is dead and still the president of the Utterly Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

  144. raymondkoepsell says

    “I AM THE BOSS, and don’t you forget it. I have sole and absolute power here; I can ban you, I can destroy your comments, I can shut down whole threads. I am a being of caprice; I don’t have to justify anything I do.”

    PZ, based on your comments, we would like to present you with a Lifetime Achievement Award for “Best Impersonation of a Toddler in Mid-Tantrum by a Second- or Third-Tier Intellectual Struggling with Boredom, Low Self-Esteem, and Time-Management Issues While Trying to Remain Relevant to Himself.” It was a tough call, but ultimately the Academy realized that you truly are in a class by yourself.

  145. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    t was a tough call, but ultimately the Academy realized that you truly are in a class by yourself.

    So are you, and you aren’t amusing, just delusional.

  146. Antiochus Epiphanes says

    Oooh, ooh, ooh!

    DDMFM, if you are still about!

    My wife and I went to a new paleontology exhibit at a local museum and were wondering about the developmental origin of these like….inverse ribs, that lots of archosaurs have on their ventral side. Are those homologous to anything in birds? Do they derive from, like the pelvis, or the sternum?

    I never even knew that dinosaurs had such bones.

  147. raymondkoepsell says

    @207 Who said anything about being amusing Nerd? There is nothing amusing about this thread save for PZ giving the world a chuckle unintentionally by laying down the law because his blog wasn’t fulfilling his needs the way it once did. His random biological ejaculations are sad, unintentional self-parody, and many of your fellow posters’ comments are caricatures of atheistic neuroses simmering on and on in so much gratuitous self-flagellation: “Look at me, I’m smart and cool for being angry at God. Please notice and like me, and help me affirm my existence. Sure, I’m hiding behind a pseudonym, but connecting with others in virtual reality sure beats being alive in the real world.” As for you Nerd, you seem to have but one little tool in your little toolbox, and you use it to little effect. We both know you’re smarter than that.

  148. keresthanatos says

    enough of this petty frukin bickering, all it is trying to move around in the pecking order,reign in your instincts herd and lets have some fun…

    I prepose;

    1) Jesus was a hippie of the most pure sort.

    2) Jesus was a communist.

    3) Jesus would have utterly hated and denounced most if not all of the modern preachers, preist, rabbi, and imam.

    4) Jesus wold be supportive of the LBGT movement.

    5) Jesus will rain holy hell on the likes of the westboroug baptist cult.

    nothing like taking the rules of a system and using them to create utter panic, chaos, and confusion amongst the adhearants.

    Happy Snafuing Ya’ll

  149. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    There is nothing amusing about this thread save for PZ giving the world a chuckle unintentionally by laying down the law because his blog wasn’t fulfilling his needs the way it once did.

    Unevidened assertion, like your imaginary deity, so *POOF* dismissed as your prejudice.

    Look at me, I’m smart and cool for being angry at God.

    What god? How can one be angry with something that doesn’t exist, as you haven’t shown any conclusive physical evidence for one in your years of trolling here. Nothing but inane bullshit and unevidenced OPINION from you. I’m not the one with one tool in the toolbox. That is you, with nothing but lies and bullshit. Show otherwise with solid and conclusive evidence, preferably physical evidence. Funny how godbots avoid that like the plague, and require presupposition.

  150. keresthanatos says

    PZ sorry posted 211 in wrong damn place, would you please delete this post, I will repost in TD.

    sorry, I’m a Happy litle Idiot.

    HMGray

  151. raymondkoepsell says

    @213 keresthantos – No, PZ is not doing a pretty good imitation of God. PZ is exerting control over a blog; God, on the other hand, is the author of life. Not quite the same thing, is it? Here’s a question of the day for anyone checking back into this thread. If PZ isn’t God, then who is? The intelligent designer of our universe is Some Random Coincidence? Really? How is a Godless creation even marginally less improbably than a Godly creation?

  152. raymondkoepsell says

    @212 Nerd, perhaps I am overestimating your intelligence with which I credited you in my previous comment. Apart from totally butchering “unevidenced” (on what planet is “unevidened” a word in ANY language?), you’ve taken it upon yourself to comment about PZ’s article without actually having read PZ’s article. That makes you either stupid or lazy or both. Which is it, Nerd?

    (To any of Nerd’s defenders still slumming in this stale thread, are you really going to take the time to crack on me because I drew attention to his typo? You can’t disprove God by spotting a typo any more than I can prove God by spotting a typo. What I can prove, however, is that Nerd is not the Tollhunter he/she fancies (it)self to be.)

    PZ spoke thusly: “This is my party, I’ll have you know, and there have been way too many times when I have not been enjoying it.”

    Scroll all the way up to the top and read for yourself. On August 5, the day before laying down the law, PZ’s blog was no longer a source of enjoyment the way it once was. NERD, whad id “unevidended” aboud ‘dat stadement?

    Blah blah blah “conclusive physical evidence,” “peer-reviewed scientific literature,” “solid and conclusive evidence,” “presupposition,” “delusional.”

    “Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls,” (or whoever you are when you’re not logged into this blog) You have a helplessly, haplessly one-track mind. It’s a wonder you can even turn on a computer and log in.

    Nowhere in the Bible will you find this passage: “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever reads and accepts the peer-reviewed scientific literature giving solid and conclusive physical evidence of his existence shall not perish but have eternal life.”

    The word of God doesn’t hold readers to the standard of proof; the word of God holds readers to the standard of faith. You must give your belief over to something that can’t be proven. Otherwise it wouldn’t be faith but rather knowledge. The human mind is not sufficient to understand knowledge on the level of God. Here’s what it says (Hey Paul, is this Godbotting??)

    Mark 16:16
    Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.

    John 3:36
    Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them.

    Acts 10:43
    All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.

    1 John 5:10
    Whoever believes in the Son of God accepts this testimony. Whoever does not believe God has made him out to be a liar, because they have not believed the testimony God has given about his Son.

  153. says

    Please notice and like me, and help me affirm my existence

    Someone wants this, true, and that someone seems to be you, busy talking to yourself in this “stale thread”. Tsk.

    Well, I’ll leave you to it. *Yawns*

  154. Tethys says

    To any of Nerd’s defenders still slumming in this stale thread, are you really going to take the time to crack on me because I drew attention to his typo?

    No, but I am giggling at your sanctimonious attitude considering that you made this typo;

    How is a Godless creation even marginally less improbably than a Godly creation?

    This creator god improbably doesn’t exist, so your gotcha is moot.

  155. raymondkoepsell says

    I truly dig the pretentious usernames in here!

    Caine Fleur du mal, don’t you get even a “sniff” (even in French?) of hypocrisy yawning at me about “posting in a stale thread” when you yourself replied to my post? Tsk tsk. (Pssst, between you and me – don’t tell anyone else – when I get atheists to argue with me, it serves as proof that I’ve hit a nerve and am on the right track.)

    Ing: The World is Dying, I reject your rejection (which is the coward’s way out) and restate the question, yet again, to any of the Atheist Elite in here who dare to answer and not chicken out by pretending my question doesn’t matter becaue I’m a Creationist: “If PZ isn’t God, then who is?” It certainly isn’t you. It certainly isn’t me. Is it Richard Dawkins? Is it aliens? Is it pure chance? Is it random coincidence? Is it 1,000,000,000 years x 1,000,000,000,000,000 parallel universes? Now it’s my turn to yawn at you.

    Here’s my conclusion:

    With regard to existential inquiry, science fiction = science as far as atheists are concerned.

    Prove me wrong leukocytes!

  156. raymondkoepsell says

    @220 Tethys, I salute you. Where others have failed since time immemorial, you single-handedly disproved the existence of God because you caught got me on a typo. For the record, Nerd of Redhead even with perfect grammar is still a one-trick pony with a one-track mind. Here, let me write his/her reply for (it): “Delusional, Idjit, Presuppositional, Peer-reviweed scientific literature, Fucking” You and I both know we can’t expect much more from Dances OM Trolls. It can’t think outside the box it has painted itself into, can it? Hear’s a parting typoe (or too) so you can pretend I’m stooopid)

  157. raymondkoepsell says

    @221 Ing: The World is Dying:

    In answer to your “isn’t that convenient?” query, I refer you to the now defunct rap group Run-DMC who stated eloquently “It’s like that, and that’s the way it is.”

    Faith, not proof, will guide you along the path to salvation.

    If you continue to pretend that God personally guaranteed you proof of his existence and then failed to come through, I hope you packed sunscreen and some killer margarita mix. Hell is fucking hot.

  158. raymondkoepsell says

    @219 ChasCPeterson, you are defending your worldview with link to a Wikipedia article without bothering to provide any context for the rest of us morons? Really? Really really? OK, I’m going to have to refer this post for MODERATION to Owlmirror or one of the Atheistic Elite in here. I suggest that ChasCPeterson be sent to the Dungeon (this is making me laugh inside at PZ) for the crime of intellectual laziness and non-participation in a conversation which might cause PZ to get bored with his award-winning blog again. We simpley (hey Tethys, did you catch that?) can’t have that, now can we?

  159. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Nowhere in the Bible will you find this passage:

    Where the fuck does your book of mythology/fiction become meaningful and evidence without you proving inerrancy? You haven’t done that, just like you haven’t proven your imaginary deity. Almost like you know you have nothing but bullshit and lies. Nothing but presupposition from you, no solid and conclusive physical evidence whatsoever. Typical of liars and bullshitters, which you are without evidence.

    suggest that ChasCPeterson be sent to the Dungeon

    Who the fuck are you to tell PZ anything liar and bullshitter? Godbots are still on the banhammer list, and you have no evidence to show your imaginary deity exits, or you babble is inerrant, just fallacious presuppositions…

    Faith, not proof, will guide you along the path to salvation delusion.

    Fixed that for you delusional fool.

    It can’t think outside the box it has painted itself into, can it?

    What box? You’re the on in the box of delusion and non-evidence. Can’t think your way out of a torn wet paper bag with a list of clues, GPS, and a map. Prayer can’t help as your deity is imaginary. Your imaginary deity leaves you tangled in deception. Why can’t you supply said evidence? Because you know it doesn’t exist, and all you have is attitude, lies, and bullshit

  160. says

    Ing: The World is Dying, I reject your rejection (which is the coward’s way out) and restate the question, yet again, to any of the Atheist Elite in here who dare to answer and not chicken out by pretending my question doesn’t matter becaue I’m a Creationist:

    If Clark Kent isn’t Superman who is? Please answer the question

    Your question was rejected because it presumes an answer, not because of you

  161. says

    In answer to your “isn’t that convenient?” query, I refer you to the now defunct rap group Run-DMC who stated eloquently “It’s like that, and that’s the way it is.”

    Faith, not proof, will guide you along the path to salvation.

    Why?

    If you continue to pretend that God personally guaranteed you proof of his existence and then failed to come through, I hope you packed sunscreen and some killer margarita mix. Hell is fucking hot.

    I pretend no such thing since I do not accept the first premise. I can’t accept that God guaranteed proof if I don’t accept the existence of any such person/being.

    Though if I were to grant that premise I would point out that God has told you to always be prepared to give the reason and justification for your belief to nonbelievers and that God allegedly incarnated in human form to be demonstrate himself to mortals and that he according to the Bible is willing to demonstrate his power through signs and wonders. I’d ask nothing but what you think God has given to you as duty or what you think he has already done in the past.

    You then follow up with a threat, is that very loving?

    and I repeat, “that’s the way it is”, that is awfully convenient isn’t it? If something is true it can be demonstrated some way.

    For example if I said that i had a magic cauldron that I was using to make an elixir of life and needed you to give me gold to make it for you, but the spell fails if anyone sees it and thus I can’t let you actually see the cauldron until the potion is done you would probably find it awfully convenient that my claim prevents investigation. One should wonder what I am hiding.

  162. KG says

    If PZ isn’t God, then who is? – raymondkoepsell

    No-one, shit-for-brains. Certainly the farrago of nonsense you put your faith in wasn’t written by anyone or anything with a millionth of the knowledge of the world anyone can have today if they are just a little less stupid than you. Insects have four legs? Rabbits chew the cud? Pi=3? The world is just a few thousand years old? You impenetrable dolt.

    I hope you packed sunscreen and some killer margarita mix. Hell is fucking hot.

    Yes, it usually comes down to threats with you godbotting fuckwits. But you might as well threaten that the bogeyman hiding under the bed will get us.

  163. says

    Side note and apologies for 3 posts in a row

    Thought occures there are only so many motivations for giving testimony and preaching

    a) to convert by displaying signs and wonders or personal testimony thus proving the reality of Jesus~rejected because you refuse to give proof or even personal testimony

    b) to convert by acts of Christ like behavior to soften the heart of the target so the holy spirit can enter them and they can have a first hand personal experience~which you’re not doing because you’re being a jerk and antagonistic rather than nice.

    c) to gloat and make yourself as superior to those who you take glee in imagining being sent to a concentration camp

    Seemingly C is the most likely motive right now. In which case I have to wonder what you think is so horrible about me that you think it’s a good thing that someone should lock me away in a prison camp to be raped by demons?

  164. carlie says

    raymond, I suggest you move yourself to the Thunderdome thread. You will find the fights you’re looking for there, I’m sure.

  165. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Oh, and lurkers, every time RK is asked for solid and conclusive physical evidence for his imaginary deity, or mythical/fiction babble being inerrant, and he fails to provide any evidence whatsoever, he is tacitly acknowledging he is wrong and I am right. After all, if he was right, he would lead with the evidence, not presupposition….

  166. says

    Caine Fleur du mal, don’t you get even a “sniff” (even in French?) of hypocrisy yawning at me about “posting in a stale thread” when you yourself replied to my post? Tsk tsk. (Pssst, between you and me – don’t tell anyone else – when I get atheists to argue with me, it serves as proof that I’ve hit a nerve and am on the right track.)

    Hahahahahaha, oh my. My nym is pretentious? Why? Caine has been a nickname for well over 15 years and the Fleur du mal is a nod to one of my favourite poets, Baudelaire. I think you have some projection issues there, Raymond.

    I didn’t argue with you, Raymond and even if people do argue with you, it isn’t because you’ve “struck a nerve”. Projection again. You do realize anyone could easily turn that silly statement right around on you, right?

    It wasn’t hypocritical of me to yawn in your direction, I wasn’t the one talking to myself via multiple posts in a mostly dead thread. That was you. I noticed the multiple posts in the recent comments so I wandered over to have a look, see if there was a problem. No big deal.

    I see others are having fun keeping their fangs sharp on you, though, so I’ll leave you to your fun. Although this discussion should be taking place in Thunderdome. You’d get much more attention there, Cupcake, and you do seem rather desperate for it.

  167. John Morales says

    [meta]

    raymondkoepsell ain’t looking for fights, rather seeking to be banned.

    Not that I would ever seek to influence PZ, but if I were to do so, then I would suggest that it’s time to close comments on this thread.

  168. says

    KG:

    But you might as well threaten that the bogeyman hiding under the bed will get us.

    And all the cool kids know how to deal with one of those – a piece of blankie dropped on the head does the trick. Or failing that, a fireplace poker is always good. :D

  169. says

    Ing:

    Bah! Primative! I have made myself full blankiemail to protect myself and fight all boogies, kinderbane, tommyknockers, earlkings, and red legged scissor men!

    Oooh, high tech! Angua demonstrated that a small square of blankie knotted at each corner, fully brings on existential angst when dropped onto a bogeyman though! Naturally, if the blankie has fluffy bunnies on it, it’s more powerful. I’m good with primitive, but I’ll admit blankiemail sounds very intimidating and effective.

  170. keresthanatos says

    I don’t get a vote, but i’d vote PZ for god. specially if I was in his bio class, I’d give him offerings of my best work, I’d sacrifice all of my experimental subject in his name to appease him and i would listen and take notes, as well as do all the required reading. really. mainly out of fear, do you people know he has access to sharp things (wit, mind, experience mostly, and also verifiable emperical research where p>.001)