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Author Topic: Debating online? You’d better read this.  (Read 1419 times)

shaolin_monkey

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Debating online? You’d better read this.
« on: 04 August, 2020, 05:02:17 PM »
This is a really useful document. I encourage anyone prepared to get into a debate on social media to carefully read it.

Your current techniques are likely causing the other person to double down on their position, rather than change their mind. I’ve seen this happen really Brexit, climate change, Labour vs Tories, wearing facemasks, and so on.

It’s a common misconception that just presenting the facts will do the trick. If that person has an ideological view that contradicts the facts, they will likely ignore the facts.

This document discusses how to structure an argument to hopefully avoid this.  If it still doesn’t work it at least gives any other reader of said discussion an ‘inoculation’ against the myth or conspiracy theory - both giving the facts, the myths, and explaining the difference.

Have a read. It is a fantastic take on the psychology of debate:

https://skepticalscience.com/docs/Debunking_Handbook.pdf


Let me know your thoughts!

The Doctor Alt 8

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Re: Debating online? You’d better read this.
« Reply #1 on: 04 August, 2020, 07:30:07 PM »

This unfortunately is very true. It is why certain scientists refuse to debate when they are certain the audience or those they are debating against have strong, ridiculous views such as flat earthers or "designed evolution" it only encourages them and worse case scenario can get the speaker angry and lead them to say something unfortunate or open to willful misinterpretation.   

Professor Bear

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Re: Debating online? You’d better read this.
« Reply #2 on: 04 August, 2020, 07:58:14 PM »
I've seen a lot of this kind of take on the left for a while now, as an increasing number of pundits put their money where their mouth is in pursuit of class solidarity, but it's almost immediately dismissed by soft lefties and centrists as "the dirtbag left" being indistinguishable from the hard right.  Helping to teach the basics of dialectics and critical thinking has never been more important.

The Doctor Alt 8

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Re: Debating online? You’d better read this.
« Reply #3 on: 04 August, 2020, 09:36:45 PM »

Yes I couldn't agree more! Unfortunately that's something that isn't taught or even realized as a skill now.

The Doctor Alt 8

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Re: Debating online? You’d better read this.
« Reply #4 on: 09 August, 2020, 04:22:17 AM »

Oh there is also THIS... https://youtu.be/oFL5NoM9GVE?t=366

milstar

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Re: Debating online? You’d better read this.
« Reply #5 on: 24 July, 2021, 11:30:55 PM »
I watched a rather funny discussion between two older people (man and a woman) irl (not online) and while I thought it's nice to see older people keeping fiercely to their points and don't bleat about issues that usually got to those who pass over 60, the woman was actually awful in the debate, but she was right (the debate was about the death penalty in UK).

I like to think that in order to alleviate the awkwardness that looms in such situations, a speaker should place him/herself in the boot of the other - and vice versa. In order to double down their positions, maybe see their errors etc. Maybe remaining at the status quo, but at least both would respect each other's opinion.
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The Legendary Shark

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Re: Debating online? You’d better read this.
« Reply #6 on: 25 July, 2021, 06:45:58 PM »
This document is quite useful as a basic introduction but is quite skewed.

On page 5 it states: "Misinformation damages society in a number of ways. If parents withhold vaccinations from their children based on mistaken beliefs, public health suffers. If people fall for conspiracy theories surrounding COVID-19, they are less likely to comply with government guidelines to manage the pandemic, thereby imperiling all of us." (My emphasis.)

This presumes that governments neither misinform nor disinform and that their guidelines are the best possible strategies (appeal to authority). It also presupposes that all counter-arguments to official arguments are, necessarily, conspiracy theories (a hasty generalisation).

Also page 5: "Misinformation is also often steeped in emotional language and designed to be attention-grabbing and have persuasive appeal. This facilitates its spread and can boost its impact, especially in the current online economy in which user attention has become a commodity."

This is a very important point and must be kept in mind when accessing any source from the MSM to the independent media. I don't watch much BBC, as just one example amongst many mainstream sources, for this very reason.

In short, there are some excellent tools in this little kit - tools which must be used across the board to assess all sides of any issue and not, as the very title suggests, to debunk arguments without first exploring them. Of course, censorship currently hobbles this process very effectively.
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Dive a little deeper - all is not as it seems. "Cyber pandemic" on the way. Devices to be "quarantined" (disconnected).

Funt Solo

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Re: Debating online? You’d better read this.
« Reply #7 on: 25 July, 2021, 08:26:24 PM »
You seem to be skating (by the tactic of conflation) terribly close to a suggestion that because governments are capable of misinformation, that there's some question surrounding the efficacy of the Covid-19 vaccination program.

I realize you must be unaware of that, though, because you've been asked on so many occasions to stop spreading pro-virus propaganda here during a pandemic - presumably because of how dangerous that is. Just ask this guy:

LA man who mocked Covid-19 vaccines dies of virus

Surely you don't want to get all the threads on the forum locked just to prove a nebulous point? Of course not. That would be ridiculous.
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The Legendary Shark

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Re: Debating online? You’d better read this.
« Reply #8 on: 25 July, 2021, 09:09:43 PM »

Yes, that would be ridiculous - which is presumably why you suggested it.

~~~^~~~~~~~


Dive a little deeper - all is not as it seems. "Cyber pandemic" on the way. Devices to be "quarantined" (disconnected).

Jim_Campbell

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Re: Debating online? You’d better read this.
« Reply #9 on: 25 July, 2021, 10:44:02 PM »
Jesus, man. Just fucking stop.
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milstar

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Re: Debating online? You’d better read this.
« Reply #10 on: 25 July, 2021, 11:44:46 PM »
This document is quite useful as a basic introduction but is quite skewed.

On page 5 it states: "Misinformation damages society in a number of ways. If parents withhold vaccinations from their children based on mistaken beliefs, public health suffers. If people fall for conspiracy theories surrounding COVID-19, they are less likely to comply with government guidelines to manage the pandemic, thereby imperiling all of us." (My emphasis.)

This presumes that governments neither misinform nor disinform and that their guidelines are the best possible strategies (appeal to authority). It also presupposes that all counter-arguments to official arguments are, necessarily, conspiracy theories (a hasty generalisation).

Also page 5: "Misinformation is also often steeped in emotional language and designed to be attention-grabbing and have persuasive appeal. This facilitates its spread and can boost its impact, especially in the current online economy in which user attention has become a commodity."

This is a very important point and must be kept in mind when accessing any source from the MSM to the independent media. I don't watch much BBC, as just one example amongst many mainstream sources, for this very reason.

In short, there are some excellent tools in this little kit - tools which must be used across the board to assess all sides of any issue and not, as the very title suggests, to debunk arguments without first exploring them. Of course, censorship currently hobbles this process very effectively.

I remember in the earliest days of lockdown, I've broken the rule once and me and me mates were outside, enjoying our ale. Two coppers came and demanded we go to our homes. One of the pals started arguing against lockdown restrictions and one of the coppers responded with "I don't trust these government measures like you, but I trust our doctors". And he was right obviously. In the government are all bunch of fuck-ups, twits and twats, but whom else to turn to other than medicine men (and women)? Better listening to them even if they disagree among themselves than big man Boris.
Reyt, you lot. Shut up, belt up, 'n if ye can't see t' bloody exit, ye must be bloody blind.