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Purpose of Skeptic vs Proponent Discussions Forum
#1
Could I ask what purpose people feel the Skeptic vs Proponent Discussions Forum should serve?

I thought the reason for the corresponding forum at Skeptiko was that sceptics weren't encouraged to post in some other parts of the site. I hope everyone is allowed to post everywhere here. Also, very few sceptics seem to have joined so far, which is a shame (possibly I am the most sceptical person here, apart from Malf?).

If there's a paper I think it would be interesting to discuss, would it be better to post in Psi Phenomena, or Skeptic vs Proponent Discussions?
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#2
Hi Chris, I wrote this in the Forum Rules:

This forum is open to both proponents and what are traditionally called "skeptics". Said skeptics are allowed to participate on all the forums. However, if an individual does not accept the reality of any of the various phenomena in the Extended Consciousness Phenomena forum, and the intent is strictly to "debunk", that type of post should be reserved for the Skeptic vs. Proponent Discussions subforum, so that proponents can have discussions that extend beyond the "is it real or not real?" variety and not always feel they're about to be pounced on at any moment. Smile

I hope that clears up things a little...

I think, in general, if a skeptic wants to engage a discussion at a proponent vs. skeptic level, then yes it's better at the Skeptic Vs. Proponent Discussions Forum. And not in one of the Extended Consciousness Phenomena forums in any case. That doesn't mean "skeptics" can't post on those forums, but not if the discussion - let's say it's about NDEs - is to take an article and extend from there to argue if there's any extended consciousness in NDEs in the first place. That would be best be suited to the SVP Discussions Forum in my view.

There are other skeptics who have joined but have been quiet so far. See the member list: Arouet, sbu, Sparky (Bart), maybe others. I hope no one gets offended if I've branded them a "skeptic" and that's not how they view themselves. Feel free to correct me here. I'm just trying to make a point there are other members here who were traditionally in the "skeptic" role as it played out in the Skeptiko forum. Max B will probably restrict himself to SVP, he's said.

I've contacted every Skeptic on Skeptico through personal message, and they are very much encouraged to join and post (Paul A., etc.) - those that could still be reached. Those kinds of threads really get a lot of posting activity going. Hopefully they'll see the message when they pop up on Skeptiko and sign up here! If anyone knows how to reach them otherwise, please let them know about this place!
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#3
btw, thanks a lot for joining, Chris, and participating in getting the ball rolling. (Or attempting to! Smile)
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#4
Thanks. I hadn't looked at the forum rules. Blush That distinction seems sensible to me.

And thanks for the thanks. But I think the real thanks are due to the people who have put so much work into setting up the forum and getting everything to work properly. And the ball already seems to be rolling at runaway speed.
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#5
I too hope that many thoughtful sceptics join the forum. Without that balance I fear things could become too "new agey" if you will.

Its sort of like what's happening at Skeptiko right now on the CT scale. Full on, unimpeded embracing of such theories with no (perhaps little?) resistance. Seems to reek of confirmation bias to me.
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#6
(08-18-2017, 12:16 PM)Brian Wrote: I hope the "sceptics" here will be more active for a more balanced debate.  They all seemed a little quiet on Skeptiko.

Well they were marginalized and then removed altogether. Only Malf remains of the original band. I vacillated between wanting Linda removed and thinking she should stay. But when she was gone I realized what a mistake it was to be without her voice, at the very least in the Critical Discussion area. Skeptiko soon became an echo chamber. Skeptical voices are required on a site like this to provide a counterbalance. People like Steve001 I can do without because there is no intelligence behind their posts. They are just shills for a movement. But Linda had a brain and she applied it to the posts at Skeptiko and the forum was poorer without her.
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#7
(08-18-2017, 12:43 PM)chuck Wrote:
(08-18-2017, 12:16 PM)Brian Wrote: I hope the "sceptics" here will be more active for a more balanced debate.  They all seemed a little quiet on Skeptiko.

Well they were marginalized and then removed altogether. Only Malf remains of the original band. I vacillated between wanting Linda removed and thinking she should stay. But when she was gone I realized what a mistake it was to be without her voice, at the very least in the Critical Discussion area. Skeptiko soon became an echo chamber. Skeptical voices are required on a site like this to provide a counterbalance. People like Steve001 I can do without because there is no intelligence behind their posts. They are just shills for a movement. But Linda had a brain and she applied it to the posts at Skeptiko and the forum was poorer without her.

I view myself as somewhere in the middle, and I definitely think people from the sceptical side are necessary for a balanced debate. Having said that, for some reason unreasoning scepticism rubs me up the wrong way more severely than unreasoning belief. But views about which sceptics are reasonable and which aren't reasonable are partly subjective, and views will differ. In practice, one just has to bite one's tongue when necessary and carry on.

I always thought the SPR was absolutely right not to have a corporate view on psi, either for or against.
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#8
(08-18-2017, 12:43 PM)chuck Wrote:
(08-18-2017, 12:16 PM)Brian Wrote: I hope the "sceptics" here will be more active for a more balanced debate.  They all seemed a little quiet on Skeptiko.

Well they were marginalized and then removed altogether. Only Malf remains of the original band. I vacillated between wanting Linda removed and thinking she should stay. But when she was gone I realized what a mistake it was to be without her voice, at the very least in the Critical Discussion area. Skeptiko soon became an echo chamber. Skeptical voices are required on a site like this to provide a counterbalance. People like Steve001 I can do without because there is no intelligence behind their posts. They are just shills for a movement. But Linda had a brain and she applied it to the posts at Skeptiko and the forum was poorer without her.

Linda... I wasn't really sorry to see her go. Shortly before being booted we had a conversation where she failed to understand some (very) basic concepts of her purported line of work. I doubted that she was an M.D. after that. And as I recall, so did a few others. False credentials and appeal to authority are a form of manipulation, which is a big "no" for me.
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#9
Also, I have no idea why Arouet was banned. But, since it happened in the last few months (during which the banhammer was all over the place) I suspect that it was something trivial. I wouldn't mind having him around, lawyering and all.
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#10
I was a fan of Arouet's style of posting.
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