Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

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Upeksha
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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by Upeksha » Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:59 am

retrofuturist wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:00 am

These are our practices, and they're based on over a decade worth of involvement in the governance of online Buddhist forums. With all due respect to you (and with genuine appreciation for your candour throughout this conversation), you have been here at Dhamma Wheel for less than two months, and may be getting caught up in the prevailing rabble-rousing activism and mob mentality from a vocal minority, which pre-dates your participation by literally years. I say that not to discount your perspective, but to suggest instead that if you genuinely believe something is not right here in terms of moderation, follow the Dhamma Wheel complaints procedure and see how that goes. Without having followed the processes yourself through to fruition, how can you come to any serious determination that processes are broken, nevermind diagnose their root cause?

Metta,
Paul. :)
Actually I was a member (different name than now) here for a number of years until 2014, when I decided to decrease my level of activity on the internet. I mentioned this on my introduction post.

Upon my return, I have been amazed at the change in culture here - it is far more aggressive, far more antagonistic, far more unfriendly than it used to be. And this not at all merely restricted to the news thread. It's basically a totally different place.

I don't what has happened in the last 4 years, but that has unequivocally been my motivation in raising these concerns. Something has changed the culture here, in a way which seems like a huge regress.

But I also do not have any clear answers. If there was a scale between light and heavy moderation, I would definitely be in favour of light. But I suppose I don't see this as 'free market place for exchanging ideas.' I see it as a shared culture, for which we all share a responsibility for.

Upeksha
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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by Upeksha » Thu Apr 12, 2018 3:07 am

DooDoot wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:27 am
Upeksha wrote:
Wed Apr 11, 2018 10:26 pm
For example, the Frankfurt School is really Hegelian on the question of truth (i.e. truth emerges in a historical dialectic). Now the point is that I don't see anyone making deep arguments, say about Kant and Hegel and how truth or knowledge might emerge either individually or collectively. The Hegelian version is already presupposed to be wrong (or worse: some kind of egregious mind control fantasy). But in reality these are deep debates which keep philosophers very occupied. They should not be presumed settled.
Possibly because many have not perceived the views of Kant and Hegel have affected their society in an adverse way; that the ideas of Kant and Hegel remained as "philosophy" rather than actual "popular culture". As an individual that claims to have taught ethics at university, I did not read any ethical considerations in your posts that consider the matter in a Buddhist manner, i.e., the considering ethical distinctions of wholesome (kusala) & unwholesome (akusala).

So please explain exactly those ideas that are common to Kant and Hegel & the Frankfurt School. For example, did Kant and Hegel teach to engage in sexual promiscuity or to rebel against parents & the society? Did Kant and Hegel teach identitariaism & write books such as The Authoritarian Personality', which appeared to deem not agreeing with the Frankfurt School a 'mental illness'?
I would suggest actually reading some Adorno or Fromm and forming your own well founded view (which may indeed be critical) instead of lifting critiques of them by people on the internet who have never read them.

As for Bddhist ethics - well, if you can't discern value judgements of kusala and akusala in my posts, then either I have not made my case clearly enough or you have not read clearly enough. Because that is certainly informing my thinking.

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robertk
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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by robertk » Thu Apr 12, 2018 3:22 am

Thanks for all the suggrstions.
For any complaints about any posts in future please use the report button.
Topic is now locked.

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retrofuturist
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Re: Free speech, mere offense, direct harm & antisemitism

Post by retrofuturist » Thu Apr 12, 2018 3:38 am

Greetings Upeksha,
Upeksha wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:59 am
Actually I was a member (different name than now) here for a number of years until 2014, when I decided to decrease my level of activity on the internet. I mentioned this on my introduction post.
Fair enough. But unless you went totally off the grid, I'm sure you'll have observed that globally, a lot has changed in terms of culture and politics in the past four years. Dhamma Wheel is not immune to that cultural shift, especially as far as topics which pertain to culture and politics go.
Upeksha wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:59 am
Upon my return, I have been amazed at the change in culture here - it is far more aggressive, far more antagonistic, far more unfriendly than it used to be. And this not at all merely restricted to the news thread. It's basically a totally different place.
That's your perception, so I cannot argue with it on those grounds, but I will say a couple of things in response to it...

Firstly, I think the "antagonism" is primarily related to the News section and that actual "antagonistic" behaviour in true Dhamma discussion has reduced, not least because certain individuals who would historically take it upon themselves to be "Dhamma cops" are no longer here and trying to fulfil that role. Understandably, the membership ebbs and flows, people come for a period, people go, people return. This phenomena was discussed a little while ago here... so it's never the same for any two days running.

As for any lack of friendliness, it is true that certain events have transpired here at this forum in your absence which have had impacts upon existing friendships. I have always been an advocate of equal treatment for all members under the Terms of Service, but unfortunately there was a period where this was not the case in practice, and the membership were moderated subjectively in accordance with how well their views aligned to those of a certain world-view. Some of the chosen "winners" in that process loved it, obviously the "losers" clearly didn't, and even some of those who weren't discriminated against found the practices to be appalling. There was a significant transition period required to restore equal treatment and move forward, but not before certain fissures were opened up, that will never fully heal.

Nonetheless, with each day we step one day further away from those unfortunate authoritarian practices which emerged, actually, in great part due to the social and political changes that were fomenting at the time. Alas, whether we're corrupt or not, the shadows of cultural attitudes do not escape us. As was said to me recently by someone who shall remain anonymous...
Maybe in meatspace, there are more cues as to whether someone is acting in the capacity of enforcer of the rule of law, or as a political partisan. Here, they tend to conflate the two: "Here's a guy who likes Trump, so he's obviously biased in everything he does. I'm not taking any shit from him!" Perhaps it's just a form of projection, in that they themselves would behave in such a way, and can't access the trust necessary to believe other people wouldn't.
The mainstream media have a lot to answer for.
Upeksha wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:59 am
I don't what has happened in the last 4 years, but that has unequivocally been my motivation in raising these concerns. Something has changed the culture here, in a way which seems like a huge regress.
If you've not done so, I invite you to opt out (even for a week or so) from the News section, and see whether it changes your overall perception.
Upeksha wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:59 am
But I also do not have any clear answers. If there was a scale between light and heavy moderation, I would definitely be in favour of light. But I suppose I don't see this as 'free market place for exchanging ideas.' I see it as a shared culture, for which we all share a responsibility for.
Sure, and that culture pertains to behaviours, not views, which is why we police behaviours, not view. Perhaps we could be harsher, perhaps we could be more lenient, but what we will always do is ensure we moderate according to the Terms of Service, so that everyone is treated equally, and by the same rules.

It's no surprise that "meat-space" societies which operate impartially under a scheme of law & order and blind justice run much better than despotic countries or states, whose laws are applied indiscriminately based on who you are, or the personal preferences of the authorities. As it is in "meat-space", so too in "cyber-space". It's true, we may need to clamp down on inappropriate behaviours, but we must always ensure we're doing so in line with the Terms of Service. Members could make that task a lot easier for everyone if they "self moderate", as they're expected to.

Metta,
Paul. :)

[P.S. Apologies, I was composing this post, as Robert closed off the topic. If anyone wishes to raise subsequent issues, please do so via the appropriate channels. Thanks everyone!]

Link: Dhamma Wheel Complaints Procedure
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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