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"Off-Topic" now "Off Limits"...

edited September 11 in Technical Questions
Well, it looks like we've managed to aggravate management to the point that they seem to be disabling the "Off-Topic" category. Indeed, the last few days have been pretty much over the top.
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Comments

  • edited September 11
    (discussions+)

  • Thank you, David.

    Fingers crossed this sends enough of a message!
  • 10-4 on that.
  • So far as I can tell, very few people on any side of any of the recent posts were happy with how things were going in OT, but no one - except those who have left - seemed quite able to break the cycle of reciprocated diatribe.

    I can okay hope that a bit of time to breathe might help us all. We'll see.
  • edited September 11
    Enough is enough. Ain’t gonna get any better after the election - probably worse IMHO.

    Thanks.
  • I'm afraid that I agree. No matter which way it goes.
  • edited September 11
    While I think a break is necessary, it's important to remember Old_Skeet's and then FD1000's goal was to silence political discussions by trolling the site with ones from dubious rightwing sources. So effectively they've won. They had no real interest in having any rational discussions on these subjects, and these discussions had gone on for years without any site overload until now. I do think if Off Topic is reinstated, the noise will die down after the election.

    I would add this troll data-dump strategy is commonplace in the corporate world. If any individual tries to sue a company, instead of withholding information companies often will send over a hundred boxes of nonsense info to weed through or try to tie the case up in court through appeals, knowing plaintiffs don't have the resources to continue fighting. It is a way of silencing any opposition.

    To me silence is not apolitical. If you see a man bleeding on the street and you do nothing, you are suffering from depraved indifference. Issues like climate change, taxation, Fed policy and government regulation have a direct impact on investing yet are also political ones. Saying we're not going to discuss those and only focus on making money in the markets is tacit approval of whatever the status quo is. That status quo is a libertarian "I wanna make money any way I can and I don't care about the consequences" one.
  • edited September 11
    Thanks @LewisBraham for your tremendous contributions to the board - political and otherwise. Always anxious to read your posts on any subject.
  • I agree that politics is an inevitable part of life, especially financial life and economics. People feel very strongly about what their money does and some feel very strongly how they make their money. Some do 9not.
    However, the very fact that cigarette companies can hire people shows that many people either don't think about it or don't care. Many of my relatives believe climate change is a "plot" by scientists to increase th9eir grant funding.

    Nothing I can do or ask them to read will change their mind, so their are a couple of choices: Either don't see them ( the one I usually try to use), or if you have to see them don't talk politics or if you see them continue a haranguing argument that convinces no one but makes everyone upset.

    The problem here is most of us don't know each other and can't see that we are upsetting people we care about. ( Although with my relatives, seeing they are upsetting me doesn't seem to stop them)

    I am not sure closing down "off topic" will do much, unless David or another moderator also follows though and deletes any post deemed "too political" in the other forums.

    I am not sure how that will be determined, and if we will still be able to discuss policy and fact based statements about the economy and the pandemic etc, and not get too political.

    Maybe we can just use the tone and the overall content to be a guide.

  • edited September 11
    Off-topic is clearly labeled. You don't want to look? Don't look. Maybe David will decide someday to just kill that category. It's an investing website. True. The nature of the current resident in the White House colors the upcoming election talk here on the board, as he is like no other "President" or candidate. Thus, the strong feelings. LB is right.
  • Although I certainly agree with Lewis's post, I must say this has gotten exhausting. I have learned to look closely at not only the category posted but the poster themselves. There are 1 or 2 or 3 that I will never click on again no matter what category they post in. If I cannot respect the person I have no interest in what they have to say - in any category.
  • edited September 11
    The fact they're eliminated says to me someone(s) complained. Probably because they are thin skinned or dislike that everyone doesn't agree with them. Why people can't just ignore what they don't like is beyond me. As we've learned since birth... the few can and usually do ruin it for the many. AKA: The squeaky wheel gets the grease.
  • For me, as well as others the "Noisy" home page has been a problem. And I am interested in other categories besides Fund Discussions so making that the only option is not appealing. David, thank you. You did the right thing. If I want to raise my blood pressure or despair about current conditions in the USA I can go to plenty of other websites for that.
  • edited September 11
    Don't know how hard this would be technically, but I'd like to make a suggestion:

    Think that there are currently 7 categories:

    Fund Discussions
    MFO Premium
    Other Investing
    Off Topic
    Technical Questions
    Bullpen
    OT Bullpen

    Mirroring the current splintering of shared media/video, could registered users have the option of setting up preferences that would show them only posts in the topics that they had selected or checked?

    So, for example, if I did not check OT or OT Bullpen, would it be possible for the site to deliver me page(s) in which OT or OT Bullpen posts could not be seen?

    Thanks.
  • @LB

    >> important to remember Old_Skeet's and then FD1000's goal was to silence political discussions by trolling the site with ones from dubious rightwing sources. So effectively they've won

    Absolutely. I concur in this fully and was a little surprised that David S, who rightly appears to have a strong peacekeeping if not peacemaking streak, acted as he did. Part of being an academic expert in propaganda analyses would entail (I would think, he said, not being one) letting fiery discussion run free up to a heated point rather past where we had got it. In other words nothing had gotten to the exchange level that would warrant censoring or blockage. Imo.
  • FWIW, I still maintain that there should be a separate, distinct, "Political Discussions" category, and that category should not be included in "Discussions+".

    Then no one who did not deliberately choose that category would ever need to see it.

    Sounds simple enough, but I have no idea with respect to the technical difficulties of that scheme.
  • Old_Joe said:

    FWIW, I still maintain that there should be a separate, distinct, "Political Discussions" category, and that category should not be included in "Discussions+".

    Then no one who did not deliberately choose that category would ever need to see it.

    I agree.
  • edited September 11
    I thought @rforno said it both eloquently and succinctly at 7:33 am this morning in his off-topic post titled “An MFO Forum Observation”. I’ve said as much more than once myself, but not as well as he laid it out. That’s not to say one side or the other is “right” in all of this - just that the issue has been aired openly for quite some time now.
  • Thanks everyone for the kind words.
  • Thank you, David. This distinguished and insightful forum was becoming unreadable and a figment of it's former self. Thank you, thank you.
  • edited September 12
    Interesting that off-topic is still being discussed in a non off-topic forum.

    davidmoran:"important to remember Old_Skeet's and then FD1000's goal was to silence political discussions by trolling the site with ones from dubious rightwing sources. So effectively they've won".

    So as long as the direction of the topic meets your approval it is OK? There have never been dubious left-wing sources? So I think you have won by keeping the right-wing comments quieted. I do far more reading here than posting. But FD1000 and Old-Skeet added worthwhile content. Calling them trolls is only because you didn't want to hear what they had to say.

  • I csll someone who intentionally throws up a bunch of clearly inflammatory partisan posts with the stated purpose of disrupting the MFO community a troll, yes. And I say that while meaning no disrespect to the real trolls that live under bridges or in various nooks and crannies in the icy barren northern parts of our globe.
    Gary1952 said:

    Interesting that off-topic is still being discussed in a non off-topic forum.

    davidmoran:"important to remember Old_Skeet's and then FD1000's goal was to silence political discussions by trolling the site with ones from dubious rightwing sources. So effectively they've won".

    So as long as the direction of the topic meets your approval it is OK? There have never been dubious left-wing sources? So I think you have won by keeping the right-wing comments quieted. I do far more reading here than posting. But FD1000 and Old-Skeet added worthwhile content. Calling them trolls is only because you didn't want to hear what they had to say.

  • edited September 12
    @Gary1952 This is a quote from Old_Skeet
    This is an Investment Board ... So, shutdown "Off Topic" and Ban Political Post.

    I am, Old_Skeet
    His express goal for barraging the site with rightwing posts was because he wanted to shut down political conversation altogether. He said so himself, that until political discussion was silenced he would continue what he saw as tit for tat posts. So trolling was a tactic for him to silence everyone else, not to have any real discussion of these political issues which he hates. He has now succeeded in that goal.
  • edited September 12
    Gary1952 said:

    Interesting that off-topic is still being discussed in a non off-topic forum.

    davidmoran:"important to remember Old_Skeet's and then FD1000's goal was to silence political discussions by trolling the site with ones from dubious rightwing sources. So effectively they've won".

    So as long as the direction of the topic meets your approval it is OK? There have never been dubious left-wing sources? So I think you have won by keeping the right-wing comments quieted. I do far more reading here than posting. But FD1000 and Old-Skeet added worthwhile content. Calling them trolls is only because you didn't want to hear what they had to say.

    You are quoting Braham, though I altogether concur in his take.

    There are lots of sketchy leftwing sources, sure, of course, but you know that, and seem to be just trolling again. You do know, this is not leftwing vs rightwing --- try and stay on content and on target and on substance. FD1k had some content, a little, occasionally, and OS too, when he was not throwing up ZH stuff to see what stuck to the wall. The definition of trolling others have made is accurate here. If you have something substantive to say, with solid sources, go for it. I love to read other takes. Probably even yours. But it better be good. You know, not trivially easy to refute.
  • For example, G52, you recently responded about Strzok on RMS,

    \\\ I missed it. Did he tell the truth about the fake dossier?

    which is sheer trolling. (Also, bullshit, also a lie, also misleading, also lots of other rightwingnut things.) Go away unless you got better than such automatic laziness.

    This latest post from you above has the guise of seriosity and earnestness. Give it a try. No cheap shit. Go watch the Strzok episode. Or not, I don't care. That guy is a worthier and more patriotic career lawman with more integrity than any of us know.
  • I think the arguments here have been between rightwing and center. There have been few leftwing posts and no extreme leftwing posts at all. An extreme left winger is against capitalism. We are (presumably) all investors here. That makes us part of the capitalist system. Extreme left wing was Mao and Stalin and Castro etc. Extreme leftwing is dictatorship and nobody here who will vote for Biden wants that. Moreover, I think that everyone here already knows that.
  • edited September 12
    Although the legitimacy of sources matters a great deal to the integrity of discussions, I think the motivation or intent of posting helps to explain whether someone is a troll or not. Many of the liberal political posts were from people who genuinely wanted to discuss the stories they were posting and perhaps commiserate over them. Old_Skeet stated more than once he hated political discussions on the board and wanted them to stop so he would post articles from dodgy fact-deprived rightwing sources to drown out other discussions and threatened to continue to do so until such political discussions stopped altogether. He had no interest in really discussing these issues. To me that points to being a troll. Yet I agree there are far more legitimate rightwing sources than Zerohedge and Hannity, but posting from a legitimate source would suggest someone really wanted to discuss the issue. That wasn't the intent here.
  • Ben said:

    I think the arguments here have been between rightwing and center. There have been few leftwing posts and no extreme leftwing posts at all. An extreme left winger is against capitalism. We are (presumably) all investors here. That makes us part of the capitalist system. Extreme left wing was Mao and Stalin and Castro etc. Extreme leftwing is dictatorship and nobody here who will vote for Biden wants that. Moreover, I think that everyone here already knows that.

    Yes, capitalism is the only game in town. Yes, presumably, we are all investors here, or people wanting to learn how to be smart about it. But the extreme Left doesn't need to be Mao or Stalin or Castro. And Soviet Russia is not what anyone wants. But Leftist? I resemble that remark. Paint me the same color as Bernie. And rather similar to the Scandinavians.
  • But Bernie is not an extremist. He wants universal health care and to counter global warming, and he wants government to represent the interests of the average person, and he wants Americans to live in a place that has some of the educational advantages that people in the rest of the civilized world have. There is nothing extreme about that. This is right down the middle sane stuff. That's what I think. He has been, however, *extremely* vague about how to accomplish his goals.
    Crash, who/what do you think is extreme left if not Stalin etc? Scandinavia is moderate left, wouldn't you say?
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