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Tuesday, January 05, 2021

Why moderation is a must

I used to regret having the need to utilize moderation, but now that the shills have been professionalized and weaponized, it's clear that it's an absolute necessity. This is also why those who are detected in lies and misrepresentations, like "Vaughan Williams" yesterday, are now banned after first exposure:

People have no idea what kinds of opinion-molding operations are being run with the literally hundreds of millions of dollars spent by left-wing billionaires each year on controlling the online right. And compared to the Cabal of special interests, and big profit companies, and the Political establishment, they are small fries. Put a few hundred million into a boiler-room operation targeting simple online forums, and you can move the perceptions of millions of people with a very small foot print.

Before we get to the weaponry, first we will look at the operation it is facing. I have noticed this operation on Free Republic. Years back, when it was more organic and less of a political target of the left, Free Republic attracted the same types of people together, and it was overwhelmingly pro-Law Enforcement simply because Conservatives tend to think like cops, and view cops as being on the same team in terms of making America great.

Now a cop thread pops up and 70-80% of some threads are all attacking not just Police, but attacking the other posters who like cops, trying to shut them up. If I was in a small town, where all cops were corrupt somewhere, and I assumed all cops were like that, and I had come to hate cops because of it, and then I went on Free Republic, I’d be explaining to other people why I felt that way. But these posters come on and immediately begin calling other people boot-lickers, ass-kissers, and so on, and their attacks are more on the posters than even the cops.

After watching this for the last few years, and seeing these attacks go hyper personal even from the beginning, I realized they are trying to drive the normal type of Freeper off the site, and make them feel under siege and unwelcome. They are trying to make them feel as if the site is not their type of site, more than they are trying to promote an idea or win an argument. I will bet, on left-wing, anti-cop forums somewhere else are shills attacking the poster over their lack of patriotism and courage, to drive them off the forum. Notice above in Lembrador’s quotes, how they brag that they have created forums where all that are on them are their avatars. The reason all that are there are their avatars is not just becasue they kept adding avatars. It is because they also successfully drove off the honest, uncontrolled posters. They are very sharp psychologically, and know how to make other people feel miserable, and feel under siege....

That made me realize, most people on those sites will not comment – they are lurkers taking in information. Those who honestly want to comment are relative rarities. And of the normal legit posters, most get distracted on slide threads composed by the operators to generate an emotional response and draw off their posting energy on a pointless topic.

This is why you are not allowed, to use a #GG term, to touch the poop. Respond to a shill and your comment will be deleted too. Keep it up and you'll be banned. Say what you think, speak the truth, and avoid the temptation to play Comment Police and you'll be fine. Try to blackpill or concern-troll and you'll be gone before your third comment.

Also, all Unknown comments will now be deleted. Deal.

Labels:

108 Comments:

Blogger Br'er Shaygetz January 05, 2021 7:30 AM  

People always questioned my scorched earth, no warnings ban policy, and I run a simple model building forum. 1. It's mine. 2. You're a guest. 3. All dogs who crap in my yard get the boot, even the ones I know.

Blogger Doktor Jeep January 05, 2021 7:31 AM  

I wonder how much of the shilling is actual AI. Or would AI be smarter?

Blogger VFM #7634 January 05, 2021 7:35 AM  

Cops? Really? Where does it say that to be on the right means to be unconditionally pro-cop? The same place where it says those on the right have to be pro-corporation?

Tim Pool pointed to an incident in Oregon where the cops were defending Pantifa against the right by attacking the right, and the right started chanting "F--- the Police" and so forth, and were trampling on a Thin Blue Line flag that they had just brought there in support of the cops. Cops are already becoming hated on the right more broadly because of their willingness to enforce Covid edicts.

Funny hill to die on. But maybe not, if cops are the enforcers of the Establishment. And in blue cities and states, their literal bosses are Democrats.

The cop-right pseudo-alliance was always based upon a false foundation. And it's evaporating quickly.

Blogger Azure Amaranthine January 05, 2021 7:36 AM  

"Also, all Unknown comments will now be deleted."

Noice.

Blogger right wing architect January 05, 2021 7:39 AM  

Thank you Vox! I look a blog that brooks no foolishness in the comment section. Well done sir!

Blogger LiveForever January 05, 2021 7:39 AM  

Speaking of left-wing billionaires controlling the online right, Google has even gone after Rupert Murdoch’s channels now:
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9114039/Covid-UK-YouTube-shuts-TalkRadios-channel-presenters-challenge-lockdown-policy.html

They hosted Steve Bannon a couple of days ago who said that Trump would still win. Now they’ve been vanished from YT for supposedly violating covid guidelines.

Given its Murdoch, it’ll probably be resolved. But it really does look like all agents have been activated in advance of tomorrow.

Blogger DougW January 05, 2021 7:40 AM  

Is it even worth it? It has to take a lot of time, regardless of how many people you have working at this. I enjoy the comments here, but do you ever consider just turning off commenting entirely? It has to be tempting.

Blogger Daniele Grech Pereira January 05, 2021 7:44 AM  

You will especially be banned if your comment glows in the dark like the example provided.

Blogger rumpole5 January 05, 2021 7:44 AM  

Of course, your creation (that I enjoy immensely, thank you) - your rules, but what is an "unknown comment"?

Blogger FALPhil January 05, 2021 7:48 AM  

It is truly sad that we can no longer have civil discourse in the United States without having to resort to such measures. But, anyone who has not been asleep could see it coming a long way off.

Blogger Arthur Isaac January 05, 2021 7:49 AM  

After that "election" it's clear that someone is pouring billions of dollars into public perception operations. And even that isn't enough. They still have to shadowban us. I wonder at what point it just cares them as their operations fail to keep rising elite ass kicking populism down. Or if they are just completely insensate off their own product.

Blogger r1racer January 05, 2021 7:51 AM  

bravo bravo.... so tired of non-sensical mainstream gibberish.... vox is a beacon of light, please for the love of God, continue to shine that torch... and boot the bad actors

Blogger Avalanche January 05, 2021 7:52 AM  

This is one more reason why my every morning starts at Vox Popoli! Thank you Vox Day!

Blogger Mr.MantraMan January 05, 2021 7:53 AM  

Basically describes twitter, Col. Schlicter always brings up the number of followers his trolls have and it took me awhile to put it together what the term "bots" meant. My little bit of info war is by following some mid list right wingers and the first troll tweet to them which is usually some Cultural Marxist rhetoric I go with discredit and disqualify. I try to be the first to respond before a normie goes the usual conservative's route of dazzling the leftist with his or her virtue and principles while begging for a "discussion."

Blogger AJ Popo January 05, 2021 7:53 AM  

/pol/ is unreadable after the shills start their shifts around 9am.

Blogger xavier January 05, 2021 7:57 AM  

Thanks for the heads up. In my case I'll exercise self control. My comments quite frankly aren't that important. So I have much to be modest about them.

Blogger VD January 05, 2021 8:00 AM  

My little bit of info war is by following some mid list right wingers and the first troll tweet to them which is usually some Cultural Marxist rhetoric I go with discredit and disqualify.

Did you not read the post? That's exactly what the troll wants you to do. What part of "don't touch the poop" is hard to understand?

Blogger buzzardist January 05, 2021 8:01 AM  

Comment sections can be a great place to see what other people are thinking, share information and perspectives, and hone your ideas and arguments. But the Prometheans have identified this as a weak point that they can attack. They’ve seen the political and sociological research that only about 15 percent of people have firm opinions of their own. The vast majority of people bends toward group acceptance. Whatever ideas are most frequently and loudly expressed around them, people will tend to adopt those ideas over time.

Nuking the obnoxious abuses on sight is really the only option if people want to keep a good comment section. An occasional friendly fire deletion or banning is worth it. If you can’t deal with a banning or deletion, if a delay in your message appearing gets your gander up, if you think your comment was so important that it was a crime to delete it, and if you can’t humbly create a new account after a banning and try to watch your words better in the future, then you have no business commenting here in the first place.

In a libertarian utopia, yes, everyone could comment freely with no restrictions. But we live in a world with evil, and the mods are all that is between us and living hell in the comment threads.

Blogger Avalanche January 05, 2021 8:04 AM  

AC writes:
Shills have two goals, and finding and promoting truth is not among them. First is to manipulate what the lurkers see, to convince everyone that the majority thinks what they want them to think."

This is where Trump's rallies have been SO successful and SO eye-opening! Many of us feel -- FELT -- like we were the last 300, trying to hold the pass against the destruction of our nation and country! Suddenly, here's pictorial proof we are 300 of literal MILLIONS! Flotillas of many hundreds of boats, few of them with just one person aboard. A NINETY-TWO-MILE parade in AZ, and many many others everywhere. Every single Trump rally filled thousands about SRO... Trump makes an mostly unplanned stop somewhere in Mass; and a couple thousand supporters rush out with little time/prep.

We. are. not. alone.!

Blogger theartistformerlyknownasgeorge January 05, 2021 8:04 AM  

Bots are cheap labor and it's not like they have other marketable skills anyway, so they are usually not just useful idiots, but enthusiastic soldiers. Therefore Leftist have motive and opportunity. Thus they are everywhere.

The "tolerance" afforded them and our projection of decency is just another example of our virtues being used againsts us.

Some of us have to be ruthless "killers" so the rest can keep their innocence.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan January 05, 2021 8:06 AM  

I don't do it here, wouldn't think of it only on twitter. You want me to delete that post or have you taken care of it?

This post was to rec "4D Warfare" available at your book store. Been thru it twice especially the verification of source and info produced by said source.

Blogger Keith January 05, 2021 8:09 AM  

Ah, FreeRepublic. That’s a name I haven’t heard for a long, long time.

Blogger VD January 05, 2021 8:12 AM  

A big tell is if the comment is a) one of the first comments on the post and b) attempts to correct or otherwise discredit or derail the main thrust of the post. The mods should be very quick to delete one of the first five comments if it fits these two parameters.

Shill hunting is fun!

Blogger Bernard Korzeniewicz January 05, 2021 8:17 AM  

Today all trolls glow.
Because I do not believe a man is possible to the degree of ill will and stupidity daily obserwed today I assume a troll is a bot and/or the active satanists.

As for "don't touch the poop" "unless you are verticaly climbing over it in the F-105 after realeasing your BLU-27s"

Blogger Unknown January 05, 2021 8:17 AM  

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Blogger Mr. Blue January 05, 2021 8:27 AM  

Related -- recently on half-pol, there were some threads where the anons were posting messages encrypted with a shared key (the 3-letter board name). The plaintext messages were obviously from bots talking to each other.

Blogger Damelon Brinn January 05, 2021 8:28 AM  

People scoffed a couple years ago when we said Disney and other movie companies were spending money on shill campaigns. But why wouldn't they? They spend tons of money on traditional advertising, which is an increasingly poor way to reach people. Why not toss a few percent of that to paid shills to both promote the movie and attack its critics? It's just another form of marketing, perhaps more suited to modern communications than the old forms.

And if they'll do it for a product, why not for an ideology?

Blogger Zaklog the Great January 05, 2021 8:32 AM  

Considering your rule about anonymous comments, I've wondered for some time why comments from "Unknown" were allowed, unless that was the username someone was going by.

Blogger Glen Sprigg January 05, 2021 8:33 AM  

Man, I learn a lot from this site. I don't comment very often, but I'm one of the people shoving your pageviews higher and higher. I may not agree with everything Vox says, but I'm certainly not going to argue with his experience.

One thing I learned when I was training to sell life insurance was that if you want to be successful, emulate the people who are successful. A lot of the agents I trained with wanted to talk to whoever was at the top of sales charts in the company at that time. But I found out that the branch manager we worked for had been the top guy in the company a decade earlier. So, I listened to what he had to say, and emulated him as best I could. There were some things I couldn't (and wouldn't) do, which is why I ended up leaving the industry after a couple of years. But it was still a valuable lesson, and one that I haven't forgotten.

Vox has built an impressive structure that has withstood the slings and arrows of leftists by following a few simple rules. If it works, and it's not going to be morally questionable, then follow the same rules. Build something strong, and watch the troll hordes break themselves on the rocks below.

Many thanks for what you do, Vox; it's educational and fun at the same time!

Blogger Randomatos January 05, 2021 8:34 AM  

"Everything in moderation, even moderation." - some famous dead guy who didn't experience the "WTF?" of Vox's semi-annual no-holds-barred thread of anarchy and trollery. The last time there was an un-mod'ed thread it drew comments from trolls and stalkers banned like 7 years ago.

Blogger Ariadne Umbrella January 05, 2021 8:39 AM  

Thank you for putting in the effort to have both comments and moderators, and protection for both.

Blogger JamesB.BKK January 05, 2021 8:42 AM  

Another tell is the "hundreds of millions of dollars" or "billions of dollars" presented as some kind of unstoppable force. It's akin to the "messaging" argument Dems routinely make. You can't make a crappy idea good with money or fancy words. Crap is crap. Plus, millions of dollars in today's funny money is really chump change. Dr. Evil made a few jokes about this to Tim Robbins.

Blogger Gettimothy January 05, 2021 8:42 AM  

@18 buzzardlist wrote:

Comment sections can be a great place to see what other people are thinking, share information and perspectives, and hone your ideas and arguments. But the Prometheans have identified this as a weak point that they can attack.

"Muh free market", meet "Muh free speech"

The post war philosophy that emerges , possibly in our lifetimes, will be a fascinating read, the treatment of those two whoreish banalities especially so.

Blogger Rebel Shoat January 05, 2021 8:48 AM  

I experienced this on a message board I frequented until March of last year. A group of leftists invaded the board. They were a slimy bunch of goal post moving liars. Many of us noted that it was "as if they were paid to be there." I don't know if they were paid or not but I have no doubt they were getting their direction from some higher source. Always in with the right talking points before anyone else and sometimes before the MSM. One of the accounts also appeared to be manned by multiple people.

The result: 1) those sympathetic to the interlopers were emboldened and more vocal, 2) those who did not like the interlopers constantly engaged them despite no indication of their for honest debate and every indication that wasn't their goal, 3) those that like to just talk about stuff generally stopped posting. They would invade non political threads and ruin them. It became a shitposting forum. They SJWs destroyed it.

It could have been stopped if the forum owners had applied a modicum of moderation to the key instigators, but they too were sympathetic to progressivism and I think actually enjoyed someone doing their dirty work for them.

Blogger Slonob January 05, 2021 8:51 AM  

> I wonder how much of the shilling is actual AI. Or would AI be smarter?

I have run a forum since '97 on custom software. About 2006 was the start of comment spamming escalation, mostly related to SEO scumbags. Short version: I made it economically unsound to try to spam my site while my competition fell off rapidly (on their PHPBB platforms, etc.).

At the time, I found that the spam system aimed for full automation. This likely works well with the vast majority of forum software/platforms because sending a POST/PUT to the submission page is the same on a large number of forums. If the automation breaks, someone comes in to tweak it based on whatever the script is hung up on. Some defensive measures will look for obvious bot behavior, like POST (write) without any previous GET (read). So the scumbag coder will make it do a couple of GETS, then POST. Maybe cadence is part of it, so GET GET POST works.

Supporting the non-automated end of it was actually a franchise model in countries like India. Set up a shop with at least 10 workstations. Hire people to come in and spam away. The franchise guidelines actually had attire guidelines... keep it classy. This is more expensive, but still cheap. So the biz service gets some spamming in while their coders figure out how to automate the work. These hired hands also work out CAPTCHAs and any similar attempts to frustrate spammers (MFA via email/text too).

AI is likely a mix of automated posting (as described above) and augmentation of the expensive human side of these efforts. It can take a set of canned spam language and make it appear that it is responding to the previous comment, for example. It could also have positive and negative reinforcement: posting algo tweak A escaped defenses X percent while tweak B is Y; or this post using tweak 1 remained online for X days while tweak 2 remained online....

It's not all that hard to defeat these systems, especially the automation. Affordable techniques are still pretty dumb and easily get tangled on things that humans wouldn't. If money is no object, then it's probably humans doing the work, so it's not an AI question really.

There are lessons in moderation from Slashdot, for example, that need to be considered. Moderation killed Slashdot because it erased creativity and made the site into 5 or so personalities with their zombie parrot followers. Worthless conformity-ware by 2005 if you ask me.

The open internet is dead and anon posting, especially, won't work even for niche sites. It shouldn't be surprising. Once the normies really showed up, what did anyone expect? Your middle high school instincts apply on a grand scale here. You could hang with the dummy mob, yes, but it'll cost ya some dignity and likely more.

Blogger wgmeisheid January 05, 2021 8:51 AM  

Re; Shill hunting is fun!
especially if you have a good sights on your rhetorical rifle!

Blogger Zastavnik Džemo January 05, 2021 9:05 AM  

I used to lurk for a loooong time before my first post.

The "system" already knows you email, name, address, phone, etc...
If you think lurking is safer than posting you are deluding yourself.

Speak the truth and shame the devil is the first, most basic and most important way of striking back.

Blogger Paulus January 05, 2021 9:07 AM  

TalkRadio in england just got fucked by youtube.

They were great - peter hitchens was often interviewed by them. He is the only journalist in the UK left with any integrity and brains.

And since they announce a second national lockdown cant have smart people question this on youtube.

Blogger Jpc January 05, 2021 9:14 AM  

100% on stopping trolling at source!
It's pretty obvious within a few days who's making a principled counter argument and who is derailing.


"hundreds of millions of dollars spent by left-wing billionaires each year"

These folks don't understand irony!
But virtue signalling and throwing a few peanuts to the mob organizers to keep them off your back,is an awful lot cheaper than following the actions of a true Christian or socialist.
And say "look I've billions let's do something really positive for the common good.
It would be modest but great if they didn't have accountants and lawyers doing their utmost to avoid paying their taxes as well.

Blogger Canadian Warlord January 05, 2021 9:17 AM  

Message received and understood. I let that guy sidetrack me into multiple posts not about the thread subject. Talk about Delphi 101...

Blogger megabar January 05, 2021 9:18 AM  

Good debate often requires questioning narratives, pointing out inconsistencies, etc. But doing this in good faith is often indistinguishable from those who want to undermine or derail. And, surely, sometimes even when done in good faith, it's annoying or inappropriate.

Deception in intent is a big problem -- perhaps one of the most fundamental problems in societies -- because it allows bad people to rise, and promotes binary thinking ("you're either 100% with us, or against us").

I don't have an answer for how to solve this.

Blogger Scintilla January 05, 2021 9:24 AM  

This is good. I agree. And apparently, using their own optics, so does Jack Dorsey, et. al. Thank God we still have choices. Thanks, Vox, for this blog. I have learned and been encouraged much.

Anonymous Anonymous January 05, 2021 9:25 AM  

Whatever you're doing works for me so I'm happy for you to keep doing it. There was a time when I would have questioned your methods and/or reasoning behind them, but that's the benefit of long experience; I no longer need to waste those clock cycles. I presume you know what you're doing until shown otherwise.

Blogger Doktor Jeep January 05, 2021 9:33 AM  

"A big tell is if the comment is a) one of the first comments on the post and b) attempts to correct or otherwise discredit or derail the main thrust of the post. "

On AR 15 dot com there was a clutch of screen names that got into every thread mentioning Ron Paul. 24/7 without fail. And this was in 2008.

Blogger justthinkin January 05, 2021 9:41 AM  

@9 A comment by Unknown.

Blogger sammibandit January 05, 2021 9:41 AM  

Great news.

Blogger Shane Bradman January 05, 2021 9:42 AM  

I've had to cleanup small community groups before and even if I know the person well, they're still kicked out and never allowed back in. I've shut down two community groups so far because they got so infested. Now I am in full gatekeeper mode because you open those gates and the years you built up your community disappears.

Blogger VD January 05, 2021 9:46 AM  

Good debate often requires questioning narratives, pointing out inconsistencies, etc. But doing this in good faith is often indistinguishable from those who want to undermine or derail. And, surely, sometimes even when done in good faith, it's annoying or inappropriate.

The point is that this is not a site for debate. So the fact that it is not conducive to debate is not a problem.

Blogger RobertDWood January 05, 2021 9:47 AM  

Unknown, not unknown. It's an individual.

Blogger Cedric January 05, 2021 9:49 AM  

I read more than I comment. For now I comment more than I did before, but that may always change and I could go back to just reading. Not having the trolls and shills is great, any inconvenience is such an easy and good price to pay for the reward of not having to deal with them.

Blogger Shane Bradman January 05, 2021 9:52 AM  

Avalanche, you're spot on. We all sometimes feel like we're the last ones left, but when we look around and see millions of people in the same position as us, it gives great hope. Keep that 300 fighting spirit, knowing that there's a thousand men watching your back.

Blogger SciVo January 05, 2021 9:56 AM  

I appreciate the apparent "more signal, less noise" approach to moderation. It's easy to remember.

Blogger Homesteader January 05, 2021 10:16 AM  

Ignoring most commenters, excepting those with proven credibility and utility, saves me time.

Hasbara, until proven otherwise.

What now strikes me- real world hasbara; the bastards can't just be online.

That, hadn't occurred to me, before- real world, paid leftist operatives, playing the normie.

The vile bastards never sleep, do they?

Blogger Old Griz January 05, 2021 10:27 AM  

It’s sad that comments on instapundit are so full of troll poop. I used to comment “Don’t feed the trolls!” But I just gave up. The comments here are good with some useful links keep up the good work.

Blogger Jack Ward January 05, 2021 10:39 AM  

@25 'unknown'

I have had the same problem and it seems to be related to google and possibly some of the crap they do.
At comment as: the options include select profile and, finally, the only one that seemed to work was to select my real name as used on google to comment as. I have little or nothing to hide or be ashamed of so I started commenting as my google id. Now, this may be to not knowing all the bells and whistles of computing and the keystrokes needed. If so, please to ask any Ilk with the time and knowledge to set both of us right.
Thanks

Blogger carnaby January 05, 2021 10:52 AM  

Doktor Jeep wrote:On AR 15 dot com there was a clutch of screen names that got into every thread mentioning Ron Paul. 24/7 without fail. And this was in 2008.

How are things on arfcom now? I only go there once in a while. Seems to me they were one of the better forums. Paid memberships help with that?

Blogger Yukichi Sensei January 05, 2021 11:08 AM  

Civil discourse always requires strong moderation.

In real life it is social shame and ostriczation. Online is banning.

Blogger Akulkis January 05, 2021 11:09 AM  

These tactics have been in use since at least the 1980s on USENET newsgroups (discussion boards, using an email-like system with clients very similar to very similar to IMAP clients).

And I doubt that is the origin. Most likely started on dialup BBS or perhaps BITNET discussions.

Blogger JD Curtis January 05, 2021 11:12 AM  

Rogan O'Handley just Tweeted out-

PENCE IS GOING TO SAVE AMERICA FROM FRAUD

in all caps. I rather like O'Handley. He seems to have at least some contact with Team Trump and will tweet out some tantalizing bits but nothing over-the-top outrageous.

Guess we'll soon see how this all plays out.

Blogger By the crease of his pants January 05, 2021 11:21 AM  

Everything in moderation (except for comment moderation).

You really have to be on your guard in all situations, the leftists/ticket-takers are working hard to poison all the wells all the time.

Blogger Valar Addemmis January 05, 2021 11:31 AM  

Jack Ward wrote:@25 'unknown'

I have had the same problem and it seems to be related to google and possibly some of the crap they do.

At comment as: the options include select profile and, finally, the only one that seemed to work was to select my real name as used on google to comment as. I have little or nothing to hide or be ashamed of so I started commenting as my google id. Now, this may be to not knowing all the bells and whistles of computing and the keystrokes needed. If so, please to ask any Ilk with the time and knowledge to set both of us right.


Something I've noticed with blogger platforms is that running script blocking platforms (or a browser like Brave, which uses shields automatically) can result in some normal functions not appearing properly (like selecting what name to comment as or choosing a profile). Selectively disabling some script blockers or shields might allow people having issues to properly select their identities.

Trust me, "they" already know who you are. Trying to anonymize at this point just tells them you think you're doing something that makes you worth keeping tabs on.

Blogger lazlo azavaar January 05, 2021 11:42 AM  

I wonder if any of these people ever have a moment of clarity when they think to themselves: "all of this time, money, effort, and manpower; all to convince our enemies on the internet that we are winning, and they are losing...well, if our ideas are better and smarter, why aren't we winning? Why do we have to keep doing this?!?"

Blogger Snidely Whiplash January 05, 2021 11:43 AM  

LISTEN UP:
If you can't figure out how to set your screen name, here's a clue:
https://myaccount.google.com/name

Blogger Charlie January 05, 2021 11:44 AM  

I may be odd, but I read the article and all of the comments. So keeping the comments clean and on topic works for me.

Blogger Akulkis January 05, 2021 11:44 AM  

>> Good debate often requires questioning narratives, pointing out inconsistencies, etc. But doing this in good faith is often indistinguishable from those who want to undermine or derail. And, surely, sometimes even when done in good faith, it's annoying or inappropriate.

Bullshit.

When a commenter has been shown by 3 different means that his theory is utter crap, and he keeps pushing it, then it's NOT honest debate, it's bulldozing.

Likewise for endless demands for "references" rather than just using a search engine if you disagree with and don't understand the point that someone makes in his comment.

But really, from what I have picked up over the years, the comments section here is more about comment and discussion, not arguments and debate.

And to reiterate, dishonest debaters are nothing like honest debaters. Honest debaters either concede a point when shown to be wrong, or just stop using it. Dishonest debaters won't budge an inch no matter how thoroughly others document the dishonest debater's errors.

Blogger Harris January 05, 2021 11:53 AM  

For years, I was a major contributor on a sports related site. I learned fairly early to post my opinion, and ignore idiots and personal attacks. That site had an ignore feature, so I could simply ignore certain people, and never even see their responses to the articles I wrote and posted.

Bottom line: It is a complete waste of time to try to counter trolls. I adopted the posture that my article should be able to stand alone by itself, and if I really needed to defend it, then it was a pretty worthless effort on my part in the first place. It is amazing how most (but not all) of the trolls give up when you don't respond to their attacks.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash January 05, 2021 11:54 AM  

Randomatos wrote:The last time there was an un-mod'ed thread it drew comments from trolls and stalkers banned like 7 years ago.
Oh, they still comment, some of them every single day. Vox and you never see the comments.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash January 05, 2021 11:55 AM  

VD wrote:The point is that this is not a site for debate. So the fact that it is not conducive to debate is not a problem.
Debate is what the Smart Boys do to score points, so they can get laid. that's how this works, right?

Blogger Nemesis The Warlock January 05, 2021 12:09 PM  

Ok, so I've lurked for, I forget how long. Don't have to comment but this is a community you've built Vox and those of us who feel we belong here value it enormously as is clear from the comments and I don't deserve the luxury of pretending I don't owe the community anything.
I want to thank you for this oasis of sanity where dedication to the Good, the Beautiful and the True is not just welcomed but REQUIRED!!
The hard work you all put in here is appreciated beyond my ability to express in words but thank you all and may God bless you.

Blogger Burning Pitch January 05, 2021 12:23 PM  

Snidely Whiplash wrote:Oh, they still comment, some of them every single day. Vox and you never see the comments.

That is some persistence. "Morning Bob. Please leave your comments in the wastebin and I'll see you tomorrow. Thanks."

Blogger TheMaleRei January 05, 2021 12:35 PM  

From experiences elsewhere, thank you Vox for the moderation.
Too many sites openly say - "muh Freedom of Speech" and "Look how principled I am by not deleting posts" etc - and things get clogged up by the concern trolls and worse and the arguments therein.
And the well meaning fools who ceaselessly argue with them - which only serves to ruin general exchanges - they think they're helping, but they are not.

Blogger weka January 05, 2021 12:38 PM  

@Snidley. The "smart boys" think debate pont scoring is attractive. It makes my wife nauseous watching such from a distance.

The narrative is that Trump is a deferred madman and all else is just technicalities, and it must be everywhere.

So that you and all the other mods again.

Blogger Darren January 05, 2021 12:52 PM  

WOW, reading about these organized online blackpilling psyop operations, it's like the DTTTM ("Don't talk to the media") warning, but reversed! Like "Don't get sucked in by vocal/aggressive anonymous community members, don't naively presume good faith in their fear/anger-inducing 'debate' attempts."
( DTTTM: https://stream.org/they-were-relentless-how-i-learned-respect-for-our-communist-media/ via https://voxday.blogspot.com/2020/12/dont-talk-to-media-part-46567.html )

Thanks for the reminder, VD.

Blogger Darren January 05, 2021 12:55 PM  

Recently Big Bear has again been talking about Quantum Journalism (aka fake AI GENERATED news stories to emotionally trigger people) so yeah why not Quantum Commenting too?

Blogger Jack Amok January 05, 2021 12:56 PM  

But really, from what I have picked up over the years, the comments section here is more about comment and discussion, not arguments and debate.

Very few people - even the decent, honest ones - are really interested in an actual debate most of the time. Certainly not an n-sided one with everybody chiming in. The old Vox-Nate Inflation-Deflation debates were different, and those are fun, but necessarily rare.

The most useful things about the comment section are the occasional humor, and even more occasional new insight to something. Every once in a while, someone has a perspective I hadn't considered before, and that can be useful for clarifying my own thoughts.

Blogger Harris January 05, 2021 12:57 PM  

Nemesis The Warlock wrote:Ok, so I've lurked for, I forget how long. Don't have to comment but this is a community you've built Vox and those of us who feel we belong here value it enormously as is clear from the comments and I don't deserve the luxury of pretending I don't owe the community anything.

I want to thank you for this oasis of sanity where dedication to the Good, the Beautiful and the True is not just welcomed but REQUIRED!!

The hard work you all put in here is appreciated beyond my ability to express in words but thank you all and may God bless you.


One of the reasons I value this site so highly is that Vox was proven right when I was wrong about Trump. I'm not often proven wrong, so I really respect those who can show me when I'm wrong. It shouldn't be about ego. It should be about finding the right way. I'd much rather be correct at the END of the discussion than at the beginning.

I still disagree with some things Vox says, but appreciate that Vox doesn't just crumble to any Tom, Dick or Harry that comes along. I don't see the point in arguing with him if I think he's wrong. Time will prove out the truth, and if you don't care about counting coup, then there is no great "victory" to be won by either party. My (admittedly distant) impression of Vox is that he's happy to be proven wrong when he's actually wrong, and doesn't think occasionally being wrong affect his self-perception. I respect that.

Blogger Darren January 05, 2021 1:02 PM  

The side of Evil had always been solidly winning at that most powerful and effective game, The Game Of Demoralization.

But then Trump happened :-)

Blogger Unknownsailor January 05, 2021 1:02 PM  

I can personally report that not every "Unknown" post is intentional. I posted as "Unknown" for a while because I had not set my handle in Google's settings. I would sign my post with -Unknownsailor at the bottom.

I got tired of doing that, so I went poking around in my settings until I found the right one, and put in my nom de guerre.

Blogger Darren January 05, 2021 1:03 PM  

Simple. Genius.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd January 05, 2021 1:06 PM  

carnaby wrote:
How are things on arfcom now? I only go there once in a while.

Highroad and arfcom always struck me as a mix of Fudds and law abiding boomercucks. A search would occasionally lead me to one or the other, but I never could stand to spend much time on either. Have they changed any?
Slonob wrote:Moderation killed Slashdot because it erased creativity and made the site into 5 or so personalities with their zombie parrot followers. Worthless conformity-ware by 2005 if you ask me.
I was done with /. by then for sure. It went libertarian-left, then rapidly deteriorated. I took the OC screen name from /. but I wasn't OC there.

Blogger Unknownsailor January 05, 2021 1:07 PM  

carnaby wrote:Doktor Jeep wrote:On AR 15 dot com there was a clutch of screen names that got into every thread mentioning Ron Paul. 24/7 without fail. And this was in 2008.

How are things on arfcom now? I only go there once in a while. Seems to me they were one of the better forums. Paid memberships help with that?

I stopped going there a long time ago. Pat Rogers used to call it the bubble gum forums, and for good reason. He, a real deal expert, would post something there, and Smart boys would crawl out of the wood work to contradict him.

I've had an account there since 2001 or so, and the only place I visit there with any regularity is the hometown section. GD can just die in a fire.

The only "gun forum" I post at with regularity is Lightfighter.net.

Blogger Skuli Jakobsson January 05, 2021 1:15 PM  

Deal.
I appreciate this blog very much so I want to thank you for your efforts.

Blogger Darren January 05, 2021 1:32 PM  

"I want to thank you for this oasis of sanity where dedication to the Good, the Beautiful and the True is not just welcomed but REQUIRED!!"
/thread!

God bless you and yours, VD. And countless thanks to the superhuman Snidely for the never-ending poop removal.

Blogger Valar Addemmis January 05, 2021 2:04 PM  

Snidely Whiplash wrote:VD wrote:The point is that this is not a site for debate. So the fact that it is not conducive to debate is not a problem.

Debate is what the Smart Boys do to score points, so they can get laid. that's how this works, right?


I'd go with debate is what you do at a scored debate. It's irrelevant anywhere else.

As someone whose done a fair share of moderating and administrating web forums, they're greatly helped by simply nuking the accounts of anyone who thinks they're there for debate (unless the charter of a specific subforum explicitly says so). Gammas love to justify their behavior on the basis of just wanting an "honest debate," always begging the question of whether debate is considered appropriate for the venue in the first place. Amazingly, the ones calling for constant debate are generally the same ones who never amend or modify their position - they just want the opportunity to change everyone else's without being booted for being obnoxious.

Blogger RedJack January 05, 2021 2:16 PM  

As a former Freeport, the problem wasn't anti cops, it was the boot lickers who will defend cops no matter what

Blogger Faust January 05, 2021 2:20 PM  

Happy New Year, and God bless! Eyes on the prize. This site has been a beacon, and I know I can count on the ELOE to keep my spirits up.

Thank you to the whole Crew! ;) Good luck and godspeed to all working behind the blog in the relentless pursuit of building our own platforms.

Blogger Beloved January 05, 2021 2:42 PM  

Thank you to Vox and the moderation team for keeping the well clean.

I'm convinced many so-called paid trolls are simple ai chatbots programmed to spam an agenda.

Blogger Ahărôwn January 05, 2021 3:04 PM  

Also, all Unknown comments will now be deleted.

Thanks for this, Vox.

Blogger Gettimothy January 05, 2021 4:15 PM  

AC provides a key rhetorical insight , to wit:

It is like the amygdala hijack as a debating strategy. K-strategists want to win an argument, while r-strategists merely want to turn the crowd against the K-strategist. You are debating truth, while the r is out-grouping you, and doing so unopposed.

The latter strategy describes the agents at pj media to a t.

Now...to learn to think like a (((stupid teenage girl))) so as to defeat (((her))) by her own nature....

Blogger Ray - SoCal January 05, 2021 4:35 PM  

Russians and Chinese have seen controlling online discussions, information warfare, as key for a while. 50 cent army (Chinese), and 50 ruble army.

And some left site even had talking points (media matters?), to portray yourself as a disillusioned conservative to increase credibility. The psyops cost is not cheap.

Vox report of a huge increase in spam comments is eye opening.

Blogger Theodoric January 05, 2021 4:36 PM  

This page is my favorite place to spend time online. It is valuable and adds so much growth potential for me. I’ve learned a great deal. So any adjustments you decide to make in order keep this place the revitalizing oasis that it is are welcomed and appreciated by me. Thanks again Vox for speaking the truth and defending the gate.

Blogger Tanjil Bren January 05, 2021 4:52 PM  

This has been going on for a very long time and you soon start to recognise the paid operatives at poorly moderated 'RW' blogs.

I watched a highly popular mainstream blog here in Aus' rapidly get taken over by a dedicated team of leftist sock-puppet commenters aided by a privatised moderation team that was very clearly also SJW infested.

These people do not have lives as we understand that term to mean.

(And 'Possessed' is a description I will happily entertain.)

Blogger FALPhil January 05, 2021 4:57 PM  

Doktor Jeep wrote:"On AR 15 dot com there was a clutch of screen names that got into every thread mentioning Ron Paul. 24/7 without fail. And this was in 2008.

I left arfcom years ago. It is run by a bunch of teenage girl wannabees with their panties in a twist.

Blogger SacrificialLamb January 05, 2021 4:59 PM  

I'm seeing shilling almost EVERYWHERE, even on non-political sites. It's beyond ridiculous now, so whatever you have to do to keep this site clean is fine with me.

Blogger Pyrex January 05, 2021 5:10 PM  

Post title was confusing...I always saw Vox as more of a "no holds barred, punch fast and deadly" kind of guy. While every semi-intelligent individual knows moderation is often the most sensible course of action, calling for it as a "necessity" seemed completely out of character. Was relieved to find that the stance taken on the actual subject, namely the filtering out of idiots and trolls and deceivers, was not a false "moderate" step but instead, a characteristically strong and decisive one.

Blogger Crunchy Cachalot January 05, 2021 5:11 PM  

I don't know how it was at your school, but at mine, drama club queers dunked on the debate team.

Blogger machinephilosophy.com January 05, 2021 5:23 PM  

Thanks for the great coverage, Vox. This is like living through a cross between a Hunter S. Thompson book and Atlas Shrugged.

I'd like to see a complete list of those left-wing billionaires. If anyone knows where there is such a list, please post.

Blogger Qualitarian January 05, 2021 5:39 PM  

Which modelling forum, Br'er Shaygetz? Is it general interest or focused on one scale or topic? Vox Popoli and modeling fora are the majority of my internetting.

Blogger CM January 05, 2021 5:51 PM  

As someone whose done a fair share of moderating and administrating web forums, they're greatly helped by simply nuking the accounts of anyone who thinks they're there for debate (unless the charter of a specific subforum explicitly says so).

Is there a difference between providing counter points and debate?

I hate reading places with no comments because I get more value from the comments that point out things I miss. I like debate in comments.

There’s been many a time I’ve read an article where I came away with some sense of something wrong, but not knowing what where commenters pinpoint and argue it out.

Is there no place for something like that?

Blogger Snidely Whiplash January 05, 2021 5:56 PM  

Is there no place for something like that
Yet another cultural good the Left has destroyed by their dishonesty.

Blogger map January 05, 2021 6:03 PM  

Just to let you know, I had a very difficult time posting comments on here through brave, and have to post through google chrome.

I suspect that the "Unknown" guy encountered a similar problem with using one of the browsers to establish a real user name. He was probably not being intentionally obtuse.

Just my 2 cents.

Blogger Tanjil Bren January 05, 2021 6:17 PM  

"Yet another cultural good the Left has destroyed by their dishonesty."

They destroy *everything*.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash January 05, 2021 6:44 PM  

I suspect that the "Unknown" guy encountered a similar problem with using one of the browsers to establish a real user name.
If it's the same Inknown, I've already instructed him how to set his screen name. So either he prefers it, or he's waaaaaaay too stupid to add anything to the conversation.

Blogger Abyssus Invocat January 05, 2021 6:54 PM  

I’ve suspected this. Relatively small sites attract way too many “non native speakers” for it to be coincidental.
And remember always to wipe your after feet after stepping on a shill. Shill guts leave stains on the carpet.

Blogger SacrificialLamb January 05, 2021 6:55 PM  

@99. CM Is there no place for something like that?

Usually not, unless you have a large non-SJW staff carefully reading everything on your site, and filtering out the inevitable shill asshattery from the regular posts. Those types of "free and open discussion" sites are more rare now than 10 years ago. Tons of people have abandoned their private forums, and switched to more centralized alternatives on reddit and discord instead.

Meanwhile, well-funded professional "opinion-molding operations" have become more obvious, more aggressive, and more omnipresent now than even a mere 5 years ago.

We just don't live the "Wild West" of the 1990's Internet any more, where everything felt more open and free. In other words, this is the Year 2021 (in the "Era of the Lie")....so carefully moderate your site, or watch it implode.

Blogger Bezzle January 05, 2021 8:01 PM  

@3. VFM #7634 January 05, 2021 7:35 AM
Cops? Really? Where does it say that to be on the right means to be unconditionally pro-cop? The same place where it says those on the right have to be pro-corporation?
Tim Pool pointed to an incident in Oregon where the cops were defending Pantifa against the right by attacking the right, and the right started chanting "F--- the Police" and so forth, and were trampling on a Thin Blue Line flag that they had just brought there in support of the cops. Cops are already becoming hated on the right more broadly because of their willingness to enforce Covid edicts.


Yesteryears' drug laws are today's HCQ crackdowns.

Funny hill to die on. But maybe not, if cops are the enforcers of the Establishment. And in blue cities and states, their literal bosses are Democrats.

Escort Antifa buses in the morning, arrest Proud Boys in the afternoon, spam "Fund the Police" across the forums in the evening.

It's like we're back in the 1970s, when the Hellmouth cop show reigned supreme on television.


@44. Doktor Jeep January 05, 2021 9:33 AM
...And this was in 2008.

The AOL invasion of Usenet destroyed it in the 90s. The DNC flood-filled alt.current-events.clinton.whitewater with an ocean of trolls, and all investigation ground to a halt (AC-ECW was the Q board of its day), and the Lying Bastard got away with everything except for the Monica knob-polish the deep state hatched to deflect normie attention.


@57. Yukichi Sensei January 05, 2021 11:08 AM
Civil discourse always requires strong moderation.

*Who* requires it? A cabal organizing debates to ensure that its prevarications are treated with decorum, the better to bestow gushing four-star reviews upon itself?


@63. Snidely Whiplash January 05, 2021 11:43 AM
LISTEN UP: If you can't figure out how to set your screen name....

...then you're not tall enough for the ride.

It's a very simple IQ test, and no help should be provided.

Blogger Tomato bear January 06, 2021 1:35 AM  

Thanks VD, and the mods.

Blogger rcocean January 06, 2021 11:30 AM  

Thanks Vox!

Its so annoying to go to Right-wing sites and see their comment sections overrun by trolls and enablers. I don't need to read a Center-Right comment section to get the Left-wing POV nor do I want to read some idiot "Debating" a left-wing troll. And congratulations on those who've posted so far - not one "Echo Chamber" usage. Amazing.

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