Originally Posted by jimbo
I think this post is dead on the mark, as posts by TeamBoone usually are. There were only a small handfull of ORG posters who continuously acted in condescending manners to not only new posters, but esablished ones as well. What's funny is that we probably all know who they are, but they continue their ways. I got to the point where I tried to just ignore them because reacting would just make it worse. It wasn't only the condescending nature of their posting, but their obnoxious ways of suggesting that their "opinions" were absolute and undebatable.
Not sure if I'm one of the people you're referencing here, but one of the major frustrations of the stat-inclined group is that any time we back something up with statistics, some people take offense and call us arrogant and condescending. Also, a lot of times people honestly don't realize that they are coming across a certain way. While I wouldn't want to get in to an argument, sometimes a PM that says "hey, not sure if you meant to come across this way, but _________________" can go a long ways to nipping those sorts of problems in the bud.
I think that often the assumed tone of a post is not the fault of the poster, but of the reader. Many people are quite defensive regarding their own position, regardless of how informed it may or may not be. When asked for the reasoning behind their opinion, they immediately take offense, as if asking them for reasoning is calling in to question their right to hold that opinion. I've seen many a poster say very ignorant things about statistics, making horribly incorrect assumptions due to a lack of understanding, and then claim abuse when somebody calls them on it.
I agree that every poster should understand that he/she might be wrong in their assertions. Nobody has a claim on absolute truth here. Certainly there are rude, arrogant, and condescending posters of all types, but I think there should also be an expectation that in the course of a discussion, people will disagree, sometimes fundamentally. We cannot expect anybody to caveat every post with a leading sentence "I understand the limitations of my opinion and understand that I might be wrong".
I'm all for civility, but civility requires an open mind from all parties. It requires people to play devil's advocate with their own opinion from time to time. It's very easy to be civil when we agree with each other. What we need to develop is a vocabulary for peacefully disagreeing. In my mind, one of the primary differences between the typical ORG discussion and the typical Live discussion on the same topic is this ability to civilly disagree.
If you're upset that you didn't make the cut, I think one of first questions to ask is how you handle yourself on the board during a disagreement with another poster. Do you continue the conversation constructively? Do you end/leave it when it's clear that you can't? Do you honestly consider that you might be wrong? Do you investigate the legitimacy of another poster's claim before disagreeing?