I am new here so it's possible this has been suggested before. How about a debate forum, separate from the other forums, where contentious topics can be debated? So, if people wanted to discuss, say, a philosophical topic in the Religion forum and someone jumped in and started debating, it could be moved to the debate forum so that the original discussion could continue without rancor.
I've seen it set up this way in other forums and it worked well.
Yes, I recall that Helium had a "back lot" where debates were moved if they turned nasty.
The main "nasties" here are in the religious forums. Unfortunately, the way the forums are set up these days, those posts are very "in your face" and give the impression HubPages is a contentious place. If you ignore that forum, you'll find most of the rest of the site is quite friendly!
Has anybody noticed that since the mass banning, even the religious forum is a nice place, relatively speaking?... the aggression comes from non religious posters attacking ANYTHING a religionists posts...
As for a quarantine area, most of the culprits move between foum topics constantly, they would be difficult to contain.
However a good start would be to ensure that sock puppets who had no hubs to their name were NOT allowed to post.
That would at least ensure a period when these socks needed to prepare their ghost identity before crashing the forums, and would stop people opening new sock accounts to evade a 3 day banning.
In regards to the religious forums being nicer ... if you remove one side from an argument then there will always be a peaceful calm. After all, it would be a bit insane for a group of people to all argue that they believe in something, wouldn't it?
Trust me ... if they ban either team the religion forum gets quiet.
I hear what you are saying...unfortunetly, there are a few that like to "debate" and usually bring useless banter into the forums just to start the "debate". The topic could be about something as inocent as gardening and sure as sh*!, Religion will some how find it's way into the topic.
About the few that were banned...well personally I believe they did nothing to get banned, I read the threads and felt they had every right to defend their positions.
People just need to grow up, use the forums for what it was intended and respect the opinions of others.
I am a liberal, I believe in God and some of my followers/fans are conservatives, Agnostic and Athiests, that does not make their opinions any less than mine because of their beliefs, I respect them and I write...
Just write...make money and have a Happy New Year!
People are allowed to debate.
Since HubPages is a private company, they own their forums and are legally allowed to set rules for conduct, which they have. The basic rules are no personal attacks (which if you get into that, you aren't debating, you're just yelling), no explicit/obscene language (which isn't required for debating either) and stay on topic.
Anyone who has ever actually studied debating will tell you it's really easy to talk about anything and abide by those guidelines.
And BTW, it's not censorship or loss of freedom of speech when you've joined a private organization or group (HubPages) and agreed to their rules (the TOS) and then you break them and have to face repercussions (getting a temporary ban from the forums).
god idea, but then
Religion is unending debate, nobodys gonna win, more so politics, PEOPLE come with a firm ground and belief and they wont budge and most often than not, they are not open to any ideas except theirs. they all end up quarreling and who knows whats next...
Just a off the top of my head thought.
if two people wanted to have a one on one discussion they can do that by invitation to one or the others Hubs to "debate".
If each Huber had one open hub that was used for this purpose. Some people are already doing something similar to that now? A section could be sat up for this purpose that notifies everyone that this is happening when it happens.
Probably a bad Idea Hadn't thought about the ramifications.
it seems to me some people carry grudges and if there's a place for people to 'slug it out', it would just bleed into the regular forums anyway, especially if they have a place to keep perpetuating arguments. i like the way it is set up now - contentious threads are locked, that sort of thing. just my opinion.
I agree Cosette, it wouldn't work.
If you cannot debate without slinging slurs and foul language about anothers family members, and you won't stop. You should be gone.
What I'm trying to say is, the debate forum would be a place where anything goes, on any topic. More would be tolerated in a debate forum than in other forums and everyone would understand that. I belong to a forum where this is the case and it really works. It isn't perfect but it allows people to continue debating threads that would otherwise get yanked.
Panther, I think what people are trying to tell you is that the "by category" forums are ALL debate forums. That's what they're meant for.
If you look at the list on the left hand side of the forum page, all the forums at the top are for asking questions, making suggestions, chatting etc. Then there are the "by category" forums.
The difficulty arises because the "latest posts" list gets dominated by the category forums, especially the nasty debates, which gives the impression they're all like that.
I've suggested that there should be two separate "latest posts" listings, one for the main forums and the other for the category ones - I think that would meet your suggestion.
"That would at least ensure a period when these socks needed to prepare their ghost identity before crashing the forums, and would stop people opening new sock accounts to evade a 3 day banning."
I don't think someone would bother to do that for 3 days banned in the forums!
To clarify, what I'm suggesting is an actual debate forum, where topics of any type can be posted with the understanding that they will be vigorously debated. That would leave the religion forum, for example, free for people who simply wish to discuss various aspects of religion and spirituality without somebody jumping in to debate whether religion itself is rational.
As an example, there is a post entitled "Mark of the beast" that asks what is the mark and who is the beast. This could be a topic that people who believe in the mark of the beast could have an extensive discussion about. If someone wanted to jump in and debate whether or not the mark of the beast is real or fantasy, then that would be a separate topic for the debate forum.
I belonged to another group for many years where it was done this way and it worked very well. I have nothing against debate and rancorous debate doesn't bother me, but I recognize that sometimes it prohibits nuanced discussion of some topics.
I think the current setup works fine for it's intended purpose. Things get a little hot at times but there are well-defined lines you are not allowed to cross. As has been pointed out before, many active, long-time participants have never been banned.
To open a free-for-all section would not be in the best business interests of HP, and as you say, these "Thunderdomes" do exist elsewhere.
All communities are different. What works for one might not work for another, so if people are happy with the current setup, then there is no need for change.
I almost feel like there would need to be a mediator of some sort to keep things in check - that is, if you really wanted a legitimate debate. Otherwise, the threads never die because it is impossible to resolve philosophical quandries flat out. People get frustrated, and then one person says something stupid, and then...(insert nuclear explosion sound effect) Anger happens, and the entire thread devolves into nonsense.
I would love to have a debate forum, but to make it work there needs to either be an outside mediator OR an adherence of the majority to proper rules of debate who can ignore or shut out any trolls who wander into the forum.
Personally, I like the "debate" over this topic! Everyone is playing nice! Well done!
They HAVE done this here for debates between two people...Mark was one of the debaters....I do not know how well that turned out though...Anyone follow that debate?
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