Spacefem (spacefem) wrote,

on www debates...

Yes, you'll all accuse me of "keep the coals burning", but I got something to say so it's alright.

There's been A LOT of drama in my real life friend's journals these days. Everyone fighting, misunderstanding one another, getting personal, taking things personally, getting friends involved, insulting one another. If you look at it from one perspective it's lots of fun :)

What I don't like is that both sides keep making the whole, "Well if you don't like it it's my comment/journal so fuck off!" deals, and that's just not quite right (obviously, I am right all the time, so I have full confidence that I can straighten all this out).

Yes, it's your journal. You can write whatever you want, and you can write whatever you want in comments. And you should, damnit! I hate to think of a livejournal world where everyone stops and says to himself, "Now, will I offend anyone with this?" before writing it.

But on the other hand, if people come back and attack you, you can't get all pissed off at them. It happens. Sometimes what you said pisses them off. Sometimes what they think you said pisses them off... it's so terribly easy to misunderstand internet communication it's not even funny.

So, here I will present for you a special list:

Spacefem's Top Ten Internet Debate Guidelines

1) Clarify, clarify clarify. If someone brings up some random issue, don't address it. Refocus the first debate and get that out of everyone's system first.

2) Don't accuse people of being purely illogical... everyone is trying to be logical, okay? Just because they don't see it your way, doesn't mean they're morons.

3) Don't make personal attacks in general. That's just not right.

4) Don't sideline associations. Someone in #BeOS will know the right term for this... but don't discount an entire argument just because the person made a wrong statement once upon a time.

5) Restate the other person's opinion to make sure you have it right.

6) Find something, one little thing, that you agree on. It helps with interpersonal relations and gives you a starting point for understanding.

7) Don't put too much energy into any of it. Remember, this is the internet. As cnik and others will tell you, arguing on the internet is like running in the special olympics. Even if you win, you're still retarded.

8) Don't be afraid to debate. It's healthy, as long as you really are reading the other person's viewpoint and trying to understand it.

9) Use lots of quotes so they think you actually read what they wrote.

10) Eat some pie. It'll make you feel better.

On a semi-related note, I would like to welcome aardvarklf to our world of livejournal! We go way back and she's one of the most brilliant and unique women I know. I really hope she keeps up with this because if she does she'll have one of the best journals ever. Friend her, everyone!

gosplcovrsinger also just joined, I've known her for a long time too and she's cool and fun like that.

as for the rest of you... hug and make up! m'kay? That was my fuel for the fire, tyvm.
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