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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby jakesteele » 13 Dec 2009, 06:00

Scepcop wrote:
ProfWag wrote:
jakesteele wrote:I'm not posting because I have posted and started threads and very little, if any, response from the members. I got disillusion because some of the threads I started were a lot of work for me and I was hoping for some feedback.

For the record, I am a skeptic and was turned off by the lengthy post of the "Rules of Pseudo's. I felt it was a generalization and a stereotype that sounded more like wanting to get something off your chest than an article or subject to debate. Hence, I didn't reply to many of your posts because I felt there was an agenda for posting. I can't speak for other skeptics or so-called "pseudo-skeptics" and although I agree that some of them can come across rude, that is not for me to support or defend. I can only speak for myself. Just my two cents and apologize if I offended.


Where is the "rules of pseudos" thread? I did a search for it but couldn't find it. Can you post the link to it Jakesteele?

Anyhow, if you aren't getting replies to your posts, then just save them in a file and post them somewhere else. That's what I'd do.
Debunkers think all UFO photos are fake,
especially the real ones.
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby jakesteele » 13 Dec 2009, 06:41

Sorry about the first post right these, I screwed up. Anyway, posted below are some of my, now called, “The Debunker’s Law of…” I was inspired to write these as a result of these threads that were posted on JREF:

Rules of Woo
http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=143506


The operative laws of psuedo-science
http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=73251

The woo woo credo
http://www.insolitology.com/tests/credo.htm

Skeptico - The woo handbook
http://skeptico.blogs.com/skeptico/2007 ... dbook.html

I am very disgusted and disappointed by the woo bashing the do so I figure that turnabout is fair play. They don’t like these at all, but I say, If they can’t take a joke, nuke ‘em.”


The Law of Blind Faith: A state of mind wherein people's need to believe in something outweighs their need to know the truth.

Law of Insistent Impartiality - will always preface and/or qualify before and during that they "only want to find the truth" This is a way of showing how open minded they are and what seekers of the truth they are. They will always insist that they are open minded, objective, logical, impartial.

Omnicient Absolute – Their perspective and opinions are All knowing and All Seeing and beyond reproach. Anybody that’s “right thinking” will see that as self-evident. Any differing opinion is therefore totally wrong (see Black and White/All-or-Nothing thinking)

Debunker’s Law of “Close Enough for Rock ‘n Roll” – to debunk something, all you’ve got to do is come up with what appears to be the same thing and In the debunker’s mind a magician’s trick that mimics the phenomena is good as gold.
Law of Ocaam’s Sledge Hammer – the simplest solution is not usually the best, it is always the best…no matter what

Law of the “Official Story” (aka. Safe refuge in a harbor) – The Official Story is always right. I’ts true because it’s true/if it’s true it can’t be false. If the OS says it was a weather balloon, then it was; proof positive, case closed. No question, no doubt, total acceptance. This is similar to an Appeal to Authority, but in their case they say it isn’t, because if it’s true, then it can’t be an Appeal to Authority because the OS is impeccable and beyond reproach.

Law of the Implausible Plausible – 1.) Trying to make something fit where it doesn’t fit. Every explanation MUST be a plausible and mundane one, even when it doesn’t fit.
2.) It is better to be mundane and wrong than to be complex and right.
(See Ocamm’s Beard – the simplest solution isn’t always the right one)

Law of Immaculate Perception – they are the only ones who see reality exactly as it is unhindered by any cognitive biases. So therefore, to disagree with them is to disagree with reality itself.

Law of Mutual Validation – is achieved by JREFing each other off…(sorry, I had to say it.) (smiley face goes here)

Law of Predetermined Intolerance – Anybody who disagrees with them is wrong even before they made an assertion and therefore, anything they say will not be tolerated.

Law of Repetitive Verbalization - Use the words "plausible and mundane" as often as possible

The Black Bart Law – vilification of all members of “them" however that is defined, contrasted with the near-deification of anyone that is “us”, however that is defined.

Law of Contemptio Prepositus Inquiro - (contempt prior to investigation) Also known as the Law of Investigative Absence”. (Similar to Law of Predetermined Intolerance). Their minds are already made up so there is no need to do their own independent investigation.

Law of Perpetual Simplicity – a bastardized version of Occam’s Razor, which, while not stated outright, is implied throughout, that the simplest explanation is the ONLY explanation. The mindset of ALL explanations must be mundane at all costs, no matter what the cost.

Law of Specific Credentials - Expertise in one field automatically grants expertise in another unrelated field. For example, anything Randi debunks is righteous even though he is a stage magician.

The Law of Woo by Association - Any assertion is to be disbelieved regardless of the validity of the data or the veracity of the witness making the assertion. A debunker automatically puts them in the 'woo' category. For example, an expert military, commercial pilot must be disbelieved if they are asserting a UFO encounter. Why? Because it is a self evident truth that UFOs don’t exist because no physical evidence in the form of pieces of the craft have been found, therefore, it doesn’t matter who is making the claim, they are wrong, period.

Law of Predetermined Dismissal - Simply characterizing the study of unorthodox phenomena as "bogus" allows the Pseudo to state emphatically that there is nothing there to study without even looking at the data.

Law of the amateur astronomer - the assertion that amateur astronomers, are "trained observers" and therefore, their word trumps that of police officers, pilots, air controllers, or virtually anybody else reporting a sighting, as totally unqualified to verify anything they see. (special thanks to Phil Plait, the Bad Astronomer)

Law of Open Mindedness - Always claim that the other guy is deluded, misinformed, crazy, etc. and that you're as free-thinking and open minded as a newborn baby.
Debunker’s Law of the Magical Magician - Engage the services of a professional stage magician who can mimic the phenomenon in question; for example, ESP,

The Unicorn gambit: If asked a question like, “Do you think, believe or know that all UFO sightings past, present and future, are all mundane, plausible explanations?” They will sarcastically say something to this effect: “Sure there might be a chance, about as much of a chance of Unicorns and Faries. This is nothing more than a way of sarcastically saying no without have to bear the burden of proof and maintain the semblance of objectivity.

Also, Just for fun, I am going to include a partial list of a typical ‘debunker’s’ psychological traits that I have noticed time and again:


A belief that:

since a thing could be faked, it must be faked

Whatever is claimed is…something else

Belief that all UFO photos are fake, especially the real ones

Absence of proof is proof of absence

I am a debunker, therefore, I’m always right. I’m always right because I’m a debunker.

Skeptism is the beginning of rational thinking
Psuedoskeptism if the end of rational thinking

Hero of the World - They are part of special, elite group who are the only ones that can save the ignorant and the superstitious from their misguided ways. They’re on a mission from Darwin

I’m Special Effect - Debunkers think they are special for seeing reality as it really is. Their goal is to convert the teeming ignorant, superstitious masses.

Patron Saint effect – (sometimes known as the Emmisary of Light syndrome) The belief that they know what is best for everyone else even if we don’t. Therefore, it is their Darwin given duty to spread this Enlightment to the teeming masses and gently and patiently lead them into the light. Similar in nature to a parent/child dynamic but laced with condescend.

Illusory superiority – perception of self as a person of elevated intelligence, keener insight, of someone who has transcended the shackles of naïve, superstitious thinking which allows them to perceive reality as it actually is unhindered by superstitious thinking and unfettered by cognitive biases like the rest of humanity. As in the case of most fundamentalist mindsets, this is to the point of outright grandiosity. This is always reinforced by fellow debunkers and creates the ‘I’m special’ and different effect’.

Warriors for Truth, Justice and the Scientific Way - It’s believing that you are warrior against the darkness of ignorance and superstitious thought. The belief that they are they are special or elite for being one of the few who were able to find their way through the darkness and into the ‘Light’. This gives them a feeling of being elevated and better than others.

Messianic Complex -that they are the enlightened ones, that they are charged with the burden of defending sense against nonsense, that they alone can be counted on to stand their ground against the rising tide of irrationalism that threatens to engulf our civilization and undo all the gains that have been wrought in the name of Science. Even scientists themselves, it turns out, are no match for the diabolical paranormalists. Only skeptics, educated by James “Amazing” Randi and other magicians, are capable of spotting the tricks of the trade. “Scientists are easily fooled,” explained Randi, “because they think they know.” But only skeptics really know.

Long post, but to me, that is what this forum is all about: Debunking the Debunkers. Any feedback, good or bad, is welcomed

Jakesteele
Debunkers think all UFO photos are fake,
especially the real ones.
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby NinjaPuppy » 13 Dec 2009, 07:03

I like it. I think that SCEPCOP should find a place to put it somewhere on the "Home Page".
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby ciscop » 16 Dec 2009, 09:18

hey jakesteele
pretty cool post
i like it

(i dont agree with it, but it was way better reading than scescop´s manifesto)
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby tiger » 17 Dec 2009, 06:38

Yes, give specific examples for each of the "laws" and it could be worth feeding back to JREF for them to sink their teeth into. With any luck they might break some of their own teeth in the process.


That would be fun. I love nothing better than to show skeptics they are wrong. Has a huge failure rate, but it is worth it for the rest of the time.
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby wjbeaty » 17 Dec 2009, 09:54

tiger wrote:That would be fun. I love nothing better than to show skeptics they are wrong. Has a huge failure rate, but it is worth it for the rest of the time.


They may call themselves Skeptics, but often they're a type of fanatical "woo;" having fixed opinions based on thoughtless emotion and supported by dishonest tactics.

If *you* call this kind of person a Skeptic, then they've got you right where they want you.

If JREF people are all skeptics ...then what do we call ourselves? We're different than them, so we must be nonskeptics? If we silently approve of letting JREF have the "Skeptic" label, then we lose the fight even before we start.

Also... (grin) If you love to attack skeptics, then you really should be attacking Vinstonas, since he's one of the better examples of actual skepticism I've seen.

Also^2...

The first law of scientific skepticism should be: brutal self-criticism. Be your own worst enemy. Subject all of your thinking to ruthlessly honest examination.

The second rule should be: present your cherished ideas to your fellows, and invite their attack. Let expert critics find your weaknesses. And then actually listen to those critics. Take them very seriously, do nothing to dishonestly minimize their words or weasel out from their fault-finding.

Third... there is no third. To intentionally go in search of weak non-skeptics to attack, that's the act of religious/political fanatics and bullies. Skeptics should be in the business of educating the public, not trying to make enemies by sneeringly attacking its members. If Skeptics must attack nonskeptics, we must use extreme care to avoid grotesque emotional faults of superior ridicule, bigotry, and the "excessive egoism" that Einstein warned against.

" the desire to be acknowledged as better, stronger, or more intelligent than a
fellow being or fellow scholar easily leads to an excessively egoistic
psychological adjustment, which may become injurious for the individual
and for the community." - Albert Einstein

"You can get into a habit of thought in which you enjoy
making fun of all those other people who don't see things
as clearly as you do. We have to guard carefully against it."
- Carl Sagan, 1987 CSICOP meeting

Are JREF people Skeptics? Many certainly are. But also I've met many who completely ignore those above rules. Their first target is not themselves; it's outsiders. They seem immune to criticism, as if they never actually read the messages coming from opponents. They don't attack other members, or invite their attacks. Instead they seem to have a "circle the wagons" mentality, where such attacks between skeptics are seen as treason; as "helping our enemies." For this segment of JREF, an apt description would be "Only criticizing others, never themselves." They're the very opposite of everything science was created to fight against.
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby ciscop » 17 Dec 2009, 14:44

Are JREF people Skeptics? Many certainly are. But also I've met many who completely ignore those above rules. Their first target is not themselves; it's outsiders. They seem immune to criticism, as if they never actually read the messages coming from opponents. They don't attack other members, or invite their attacks. Instead they seem to have a "circle the wagons" mentality, where such attacks between skeptics are seen as treason; as "helping our enemies." For this segment of JREF, an apt description would be "Only criticizing others, never themselves." They're the very opposite of everything science was created to fight against.


nonsense.
there;s no circle the wagons mentality
i have attacked jref before in this forum and i consider myself a skeptic
that just your opinion, not a fact
both terms which believers tend to get confused by
For every person who reads this valuable book there are hundreds of naïve souls who would prefer to have their spines tingled by a sensational but worthless potboiler by some hack journalist of the paranormal. You who now read these sentences join a small but wiser minority. Martin Gaardner (Psychology of the Psychic)
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby NinjaPuppy » 17 Dec 2009, 20:46

Before we go off on a tangent here, back on topic.

WJBeatty commented about a new member on the "Introduce Yourself" thread that one of the 'newbies' is a Spambot. I went back and took a look at the membership roster and it's possible that many of the newer additions are also Spambots. That would certainly explain why they never follow up with a reply post. They obviously put up some nearly understandable comment with a link in their signature to get the attention. I've never dealt with Spambots before as a Mod, just real live spammers.

Anyone have any suggestions?
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby ProfWag » 18 Dec 2009, 01:27

NinjaPuppy wrote:Before we go off on a tangent here, back on topic.

WJBeatty commented about a new member on the "Introduce Yourself" thread that one of the 'newbies' is a Spambot. I went back and took a look at the membership roster and it's possible that many of the newer additions are also Spambots. That would certainly explain why they never follow up with a reply post. They obviously put up some nearly understandable comment with a link in their signature to get the attention. I've never dealt with Spambots before as a Mod, just real live spammers.

Anyone have any suggestions?

I had never heard of that term so I had to look it up in wiki. This is what it said, but you probably already know it:
The easiest way to prevent spambots from posting on forums, wiki, guestbook, etc. is to enable e-mail activation by installing a mail server on the host (eg: Sendmail, Postfix, Exim.), since most spambot scripts use fake or randomly generated names on real e-mail providers, the e-mails will mostly never be successfully routed to them.
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby NinjaPuppy » 18 Dec 2009, 01:49

ProfWag wrote:I had never heard of that term so I had to look it up in wiki. This is what it said, but you probably already know it:
The easiest way to prevent spambots from posting on forums, wiki, guestbook, etc. is to enable e-mail activation by installing a mail server on the host (eg: Sendmail, Postfix, Exim.), since most spambot scripts use fake or randomly generated names on real e-mail providers, the e-mails will mostly never be successfully routed to them.

As you may already know, I am the Wiki maven. :lol:

Yes, but that's for e-mail harvesting varieties. I've never heard of spambots that can actually post on a forum.
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby NinjaPuppy » 18 Dec 2009, 01:50

It was suggested that it is probably a live spammer person doing it. Not an actual program or bot.
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby ProfWag » 18 Dec 2009, 04:55

NinjaPuppy wrote:It was suggested that it is probably a live spammer person doing it. Not an actual program or bot.

And probably a skeptic to boot... ;-)
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby NinjaPuppy » 18 Dec 2009, 06:30

:roll:
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby wjbeaty » 22 Dec 2009, 09:43

NinjaPuppy wrote:I've never heard of spambots that can actually post on a forum.


They're VERY VERY common, but only on widely used forum software packages, phpBB in particular. They're also hard to notice, so you have to be looking for them. While using phpBB, for months I had to delete several bot spams per day, and the bots were registering themselves using human names and even managing to defeat CAPTCHA turing test. Bot spam postings are almost always a piece of stolen text plus one or two links either buried in text or down in the sig. Usually the text wasn't a non-sequiter, but had some vague connection to the subject line. Note that they aren't after customers; their goal is to increase Google ratings for clients by filling thousands of forum archives with unnoticed links. They want to look human so they can stay beneath radar, and their messages remain unnoticed in archives.

Each time we changed to stronger CAPTCHA, the spam traffic would vanish, then it would return and grow again as the spammers learned to defeat it. (I assume that other forum owners were all doing the same, so it was global escalation between mods versus bot programmers.) Now we've switched to Simple Machines instead of phpBB, and spam postings are way down to ~1/mo. What does SCEPCOP use? No doubt the spammers are designing bots to search out forums having the most common software. I bet that a year down the road, once many others use SImple Machines, the bot programmers will all be migrated as well, and our problem will return.
-----------------------------------------------
'Skeptic' does not mean scoffer
'Skeptic' does not mean debunker
'Skeptic' does not mean csicop member
'Skeptic' does not mean Atheist
'Skeptic' does not mean cynic
'Skeptic' does not mean woo-woo-hater
'Skeptic' does not mean anti-paranormalist
'Skeptic' does not even mean self-declared Skeptic
((((((((((((( ( (O) ) )))))))))))))
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Re: Why are new members not posting?

Postby tiger » 22 Dec 2009, 10:00

wjbeaty wrote:[<snip> Note that they aren't after customers; their goal is to increase Google ratings for clients by filling thousands of forum archives with unnoticed links. They want to look human so they can stay beneath radar, and their messages remain unnoticed in archives.
<snip>


One way to defeat this is to have a rule that says no links (and no signatures) for the first # posts. Bit of a pain for real forum members, but I am told it works.

Can they be reported to Google so that their pages get a very low rank? That is something that might defeat them.
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