New forum about politics

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Oedipus

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Hello there,

I was thinking about starting a new forum about politics in my native language.

I would like to hear your suggestions.

Are forums even worth starting in 2020?

I will probably be using IPS because it looks professional and has a lot of features.

Thank you.
 

Pete

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The big question: what would your forum bring that doesn't already exist in 2020? Could you bring something that, say, couldn't be done in a Facebook group?
 

Oedipus

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The big question: what would your forum bring that doesn't already exist in 2020? Could you bring something that, say, couldn't be done in a Facebook group?

Based on my research, it will be the only forum about politics only.
 

Steve M

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If it's a friendly place to have friendly debates over politics then I can see it growing and working. I've tried having friendly debates on Facebook but it turns into name calling which is when I'm done with it because when you have someone start name calling then that is when the person stops thinking clearly and stops being rational.
 

Oedipus

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If it's a friendly place to have friendly debates over politics then I can see it growing and working. I've tried having friendly debates on Facebook but it turns into name calling which is when I'm done with it because when you have someone start name calling then that is when the person stops thinking clearly and stops being rational.

Totally agree. I will make sure to write rules that will forbid that.

Free speech is crucial.
 

Steve M

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There is a difference between being offensive and outright being disrespectful of someone because of their race, religion, sex, etc. That is the name calling I refer to.
 

Pete

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Sure, but that's where forums that proclaim 'free speech' as a feature run into a problem - you cannot have 'free speech' without also allowing outright disrespect etc.

Better to not claim freedom of speech really.
 

frm

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If you are politically driven to promote what you feel is right and it is not getting enough exposure on traditional platforms, then:
Are forums even worth starting in 2020?
Without a doubt as you can let all spectrums come together and have an exchange of ideas that are typically not welcome elsewhere.
I was thinking about starting a new forum about politics in my native language.
This would be a great step to allow for others to join your cause, wherever you may be.
Sure, but that's where forums that proclaim 'free speech' as a feature run into a problem - you cannot have 'free speech' without also allowing outright disrespect etc.
However, I do disagree with this point of view. Free speech can be handled in a multitude of ways on a true platform: You let it happen but noindex the thread. Next, you try to mediate the differences with an arbitrator that knows what the debate is about without proactively taking one side over another. Then, you have each party that clashes opt to block one another if they cannot resolve the differences for the time being and to come back at a later date with facts and evidence, as debates are won that way. All else fails, you could have a "jail" of sorts that is a private forum where "banned" members can post whatever they want and it's only visible to banned members and staff; they can then go on a tangent and still have free speech in a public square, so to speak (other members can even opt-in to view 'jailed' threads too, it's just a way to hide it from Big Tech as it will surely have an impact on your site, depending on which way it leans).
The big question: what would your forum bring that doesn't already exist in 2020? Could you bring something that, say, couldn't be done in a Facebook group?
Facebook has been actively shadowbanning and throttling reach to known conservatives. The Hodge Twins are a perfect example of this with ~8 million followers, but they can only reach a hundred or so thousand per post. Further, their posts are fact-checked when nothing they post had any statements relevant to the fact check. Also, the Page is on its way out because it has too many community guideline strikes already. POOF.

As far as groups go, even if private, they will be and have been shut down as well. However, Antifa and the likes are free to organize.

Throw up a BLM "rally" event and it won't be taken down; do the same for a peaceful Trump rally and it'll surely be done with.
 

Pete

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Facebook has been actively shadowbanning and throttling reach to known conservatives.

Do you mean the conservatives that are actually calling for, say, beheading of liberal people? Or just the kind of conservative who wants to spread misinformation and lies, which then people rail at Facebook for 'failing to prevent'?

I took a quick look at their material, it's pretty evident that Facebook censors it not so much 'because they're conservative' but because it's actually quite offensive - suggesting that misogyny is not a problem (it is), criticising a person of colour for suggesting that Trump rallies are also KKK rallies (personally I'm white cishet male, so it doesn't hit me as a gut punch but I can see why some would feel that way), and they're the kind of people I can see that would offend a number of others simply by being black and yet apparently sympathetic to causes that denigrate black people.

I don't know enough to say whether that's an accurate depiction or not, but given Facebook is routinely being pushed to being considered a publisher of its material (thus, no protection under Section 230), that would make them legally liable for the content in question which... would be very much a thing they'd have to think about suppressing. (Note also that the same people calling for FB to be considered a publisher and thus exempt from S230 protections tend to be the same people who want to use S230 protections themselves to say what they want on FB.)

Also, you're trying to suggest that Antifa is a single group... it's not. It's a general name (much like BLM, interestingly) for people with a common cause: opposing fascism. Nothing more, nothing less.
 

tony45

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Where are you from?
You should consider to make offline meetings for your members.
 

Oh!

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frm Straight question: are you taking your position because you wish to be allowed to post materials which the owners of this website (and the vast majority of people online) will find to offensive and objectionable?

You do appreciate, surely, that in the real world there are expected standards of behavior (specific to the occasion and group). Those standards can be (usually) mediated well enough within self-selecting groups. But when the group is taking advantage of space operated and controlled by someone else (a bar, a restaurant, workplace, your home, etc.), certain standards of expected behavior will be imposed upon the group (by the operator of that space) because how they behave affects other individuals and groups making use of the same space. Why do you feel - apparently - that similar considerations should not be afforded to those operating online shared spaces?

As for:

However, I do disagree with this point of view. Free speech can be handled in a multitude of ways on a true platform: You let it happen but noindex the thread. Next, you try to mediate the differences with an arbitrator that knows what the debate is about without proactively taking one side over another. Then, you have each party that clashes opt to block one another if they cannot resolve the differences for the time being and to come back at a later date with facts and evidence, as debates are won that way. All else fails, you could have a "jail" of sorts that is a private forum where "banned" members can post whatever they want and it's only visible to banned members and staff; they can then go on a tangent and still have free speech in a public square, so to speak (other members can even opt-in to view 'jailed' threads too, it's just a way to hide it from Big Tech as it will surely have an impact on your site, depending on which way it leans).

You might try to moderate a space in that manner (and good luck to you). But, three points spring to mind: the amount of time and effort to mediate disputes in that way is impractical for most forum operators; it would likely would invite excessive trolling (gaming your system of mediation); it seems to me- because of your highly prescribed mediation system - to be diametrically opposed to ideas of 'freedom of speech'. I am not suggesting that a moderator intervening to deescalate a situation is anything but a good thing. But what you suggest there goes way beyond this. It is not transparent; it is convoluted; and is more controlling that simply removing content and/or disabling accounts.

Edited to add: I also reference this thread where you have posted comments along similar lines.
 

MagicalAzareal

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Why do you feel - apparently - that similar considerations should not be afforded to those operating online shared spaces?
For small sites, your house your rules, however large platforms like Facebook and Twitter have created an expectation of free speech, by marketing their platforms as platforms devoted to free speech, and promoting free speech as a value.

When the marketing lose it's lustre, they immediately made a big 180, and went back on their own ideals. It wasn't anyone but the platforms who created that expectation, and it is that expectation which ended up hurting them so badly in a trying to have their cake and eat it sort of way.
 

Oh!

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For small sites, your house your rules, however large platforms like Facebook and Twitter have created an expectation of free speech, by marketing their platforms as platforms devoted to free speech, and promoting free speech as a value.

When the marketing lose it's lustre, they immediately made a big 180, and went back on their own ideals. It wasn't anyone but the platforms who created that expectation, and it is that expectation which ended up hurting them so badly in a trying to have their cake and eat it sort of way.
I agree that, for some, expectations might have been unfulfilled. But this does address the point I was making. Platforms are free to change their minds regarding their editorial line. 'Freedom of Expression' principles protect forums and platforms in determining their own boundaries (within the limits of the law). I know you know this - I am just underlying the principle.
 

Nev_Dull

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I think there's plenty of room for a mature, balanced political discussion forum. I'm just not sure there are enough mature, balanced users available to participate.

As Pete said, I wouldn't make "free speech" a selling proposition of such a forum. Free speech, like free will, doesn't exist. It's just a licence to spout baseless nonsense that does not promote intelligent discussion, but rather suffocates it.

You will need a few clear rules, a strict no-tolerance policy, and enough moderators to keep order. With all that in place, you could have a really successful forum.
 

frm

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We obviously can't have a civil debate as you're projecting.

Beheading from the right? Which right? I'll disown them. Will you do the same?

This is her 1st time putting it up, which did cost her a position at CNN... but as it's more acceptable in 2020 as she has gotten away with it weeks ago, I don't think she'll receive any backlash.

I also don't believe that this should be censored from here as it is essentially following Twitter's guidelines.

As far as misogyny goes... let's compare alternative "alt-right" personalities versus independent liberal media. Hmm...?

I could give countless examples of garbage coming from the left, while this is not tolerated from the right whatsoever. However, something tells me that you will put up a wall.

Please, if you can, send me a conversation about all these right-wing beheadings. I'll be waiting.
 

NYCGuy76

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Do you mean the conservatives that are actually calling for, say, beheading of liberal people? Or just the kind of conservative who wants to spread misinformation and lies, which then people rail at Facebook for 'failing to prevent'?

I took a quick look at their material, it's pretty evident that Facebook censors it not so much 'because they're conservative' but because it's actually quite offensive - suggesting that misogyny is not a problem (it is), criticising a person of colour for suggesting that Trump rallies are also KKK rallies (personally I'm white cishet male, so it doesn't hit me as a gut punch but I can see why some would feel that way), and they're the kind of people I can see that would offend a number of others simply by being black and yet apparently sympathetic to causes that denigrate black people.

I don't know enough to say whether that's an accurate depiction or not, but given Facebook is routinely being pushed to being considered a publisher of its material (thus, no protection under Section 230), that would make them legally liable for the content in question which... would be very much a thing they'd have to think about suppressing. (Note also that the same people calling for FB to be considered a publisher and thus exempt from S230 protections tend to be the same people who want to use S230 protections themselves to say what they want on FB.)

Also, you're trying to suggest that Antifa is a single group... it's not. It's a general name (much like BLM, interestingly) for people with a common cause: opposing fascism. Nothing more, nothing less.
You can't possibly be serious in regards to conservatives wanting to behead liberals. Where do you come up with this stuff? I have a conservative views and never in my life did I wish to behead to any liberal lol. Second Antifa are todays definition of a fascist ironically. The same people that preach freedom are the ones that practice violence and oppose free speech. Where have you been for the past 5 years?
 

NYCGuy76

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We obviously can't have a civil debate as you're projecting.

Beheading from the right? Which right? I'll disown them. Will you do the same?

This is her 1st time putting it up, which did cost her a position at CNN... but as it's more acceptable in 2020 as she has gotten away with it weeks ago, I don't think she'll receive any backlash.

I also don't believe that this should be censored from here as it is essentially following Twitter's guidelines.

As far as misogyny goes... let's compare alternative "alt-right" personalities versus independent liberal media. Hmm...?

I could give countless examples of garbage coming from the left, while this is not tolerated from the right whatsoever. However, something tells me that you will put up a wall.

Please, if you can, send me a conversation about all these right-wing beheadings. I'll be waiting.

My thoughts exactly but I'll tell you what the problem is. These people don't watch various news networks. They stick to CNN, MSNBC and only see what they show them so rightfully they believe it. Tell them to watch Fox News and see the other side but they'll tell you that they're a right wing media outlet. Meanwhile Christopher Wallace the number one liberal has his own show on there along with that democrat and both hate Trump. Yet Fox is biased lol.
 
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