On the use of whackjobometers

Nov 2007
2,006
1,195
Prague, Czech Republic
#1
I have noticed a worrying trend recently.

As most have probably noticed, this forum is filled to the brim with great, steaming mounds of horseshit. A significant proportion of threads are begun by someone wheeling in a particularly fetid pile and smearing it all over the opening post.

This is not the worrying trend I'm talking about, nor is it a criticism of this forum - that's just what internet forums are like.

What I do find worrying, is a distressingly common response to this textual pollution. Rather than explaining why it's to be dismissed, perhaps by pointing out the factual errors, the poor logic, or the information concealed, several posters think the appropriate response is instead, this:

Poster said:
Hah! You have no credibility! Look what I found on the internet!

1558037658950.png
What's most concerning, is that sometimes this approach is chosen even when the info provided in the source is not actually wrong. Even the most deranged whackjobs, after all, sometimes base their arguments on things connected to the real world.

So, Poster A will share a story about the gub'mint doing xyz, and will state that therefore George Soros rapes babies while he discusses his plans to force everyone to be gay Muslims with Hilary Clinton.

And then Poster B shows us a whackjobometer asserting that Poster A's source is blleeaargh!!!111!!!

But what's this supposed to establish? In this hypothetical scenario, the government really did xyz. The authority of the source is not relevant - the same information was carried by the BBC, by CNN, by Fox, by Breitbart, by the Socialist Worker, etc etc etc., because it's true. The approach here is to point out that Poster A's disturbingly graphic fantasies about aging Jewish billionaires do not follow from the story's factual kernel.

If, instead of doing this, you post a whackjobometer, it doesn't look to me like a win for your argument. Instead, it makes me think of you whenever Poster A rants about how liberals can't think for themselves because Obama put mercury in their vaccines.

Just my two cents - do with this advise what you will.
 
Jan 2014
18,148
5,162
California
#3
I have noticed a worrying trend recently.

As most have probably noticed, this forum is filled to the brim with great, steaming mounds of horseshit. A significant proportion of threads are begun by someone wheeling in a particularly fetid pile and smearing it all over the opening post.

This is not the worrying trend I'm talking about, nor is it a criticism of this forum - that's just what internet forums are like.

What I do find worrying, is a distressingly common response to this textual pollution. Rather than explaining why it's to be dismissed, perhaps by pointing out the factual errors, the poor logic, or the information concealed, several posters think the appropriate response is instead, this:



What's most concerning, is that sometimes this approach is chosen even when the info provided in the source is not actually wrong. Even the most deranged whackjobs, after all, sometimes base their arguments on things connected to the real world.

So, Poster A will share a story about the gub'mint doing xyz, and will state that therefore George Soros rapes babies while he discusses his plans to force everyone to be gay Muslims with Hilary Clinton.

And then Poster B shows us a whackjobometer asserting that Poster A's source is blleeaargh!!!111!!!

But what's this supposed to establish? In this hypothetical scenario, the government really did xyz. The authority of the source is not relevant - the same information was carried by the BBC, by CNN, by Fox, by Breitbart, by the Socialist Worker, etc etc etc., because it's true. The approach here is to point out that Poster A's disturbingly graphic fantasies about aging Jewish billionaires do not follow from the story's factual kernel.

If, instead of doing this, you post a whackjobometer, it doesn't look to me like a win for your argument. Instead, it makes me think of you whenever Poster A rants about how liberals can't think for themselves because Obama put mercury in their vaccines.

Just my two cents - do with this advise what you will.
Mr. Caffeine,

It is called "poison the well" fallacious debate. Rather than address the point, it attacks the source. It is a particularly lazy and dishonest means of debate, and one favored by our resident liberals here.
 
Likes: orangecat
Jun 2013
18,348
16,127
Here
#4
I have noticed a worrying trend recently.

As most have probably noticed, this forum is filled to the brim with great, steaming mounds of horseshit. A significant proportion of threads are begun by someone wheeling in a particularly fetid pile and smearing it all over the opening post.

This is not the worrying trend I'm talking about, nor is it a criticism of this forum - that's just what internet forums are like.

What I do find worrying, is a distressingly common response to this textual pollution. Rather than explaining why it's to be dismissed, perhaps by pointing out the factual errors, the poor logic, or the information concealed, several posters think the appropriate response is instead, this:



What's most concerning, is that sometimes this approach is chosen even when the info provided in the source is not actually wrong. Even the most deranged whackjobs, after all, sometimes base their arguments on things connected to the real world.

So, Poster A will share a story about the gub'mint doing xyz, and will state that therefore George Soros rapes babies while he discusses his plans to force everyone to be gay Muslims with Hilary Clinton.

And then Poster B shows us a whackjobometer asserting that Poster A's source is blleeaargh!!!111!!!

But what's this supposed to establish? In this hypothetical scenario, the government really did xyz. The authority of the source is not relevant - the same information was carried by the BBC, by CNN, by Fox, by Breitbart, by the Socialist Worker, etc etc etc., because it's true. The approach here is to point out that Poster A's disturbingly graphic fantasies about aging Jewish billionaires do not follow from the story's factual kernel.

If, instead of doing this, you post a whackjobometer, it doesn't look to me like a win for your argument. Instead, it makes me think of you whenever Poster A rants about how liberals can't think for themselves because Obama put mercury in their vaccines.

Just my two cents - do with this advise what you will.

Nice whackjob rant.

It lacks that reasoning that says when someone consistently posts from sources that are either not credible or consistently use things like loaded words and other terms to that express specific bias, that caution should be taken by readers who may be apt to believe it out of hand.

"Media Bias" Media Bias/Fact Check - Search and Learn the Bias of News Media offers more than simply a ratings bar and the ratings are based on anyone who wishes, to rate a source of information as to where readers would place its bias. That means all sources can be rated to have a specific bias to the right or to the left of center. Bias in of itself is not an indicator of truth or fiction, but it does provide some guidance as to where the source of information is coming from when it comes to loading the "conversation" or their information with forms of presenting it that will weigh heavily toward their specific political bias. This meaning they may present a report of an incident in such a way that leaves out critical factors that would change someone's perspective on a story, in the way half truths and things taken out of full context which gives them further and a totally opposite meaning.

The author of a source is indeed relevant, especially when a source has been more often than not or consistently to float false, unverifiable misinformation or blatant lies.

Everyone should take the time needed to verify what any single source of information tells them before passing it along as truth, themselves.

Intentional lying to influence an event, such as an election is nothing new to the world. Jonathan Swift spoke of it, centuries ago and our current POTUS wants everyone to believe anything that comes from the "media" he calls the "enemies of the American people" is fake. Ironically, those who do the research necessary to see who, between the POTUS and the media he calls "fake" is telling the truth more often than not, realize who is really presenting fake information.

"....... as the vilest writer hath his readers, so the greatest liar hath his believers: and it often happens, that if a lie be believed only for an hour, it hath done its work, and there is no further occasion for it. Falsehood flies, and truth comes limping after it, so that when men come to be undeceived, it is too late; the jest is over, and the tale hath had its effect: like a man, who hath thought of a good repartee when the discourse is changed, or the company parted; or like a physician, who hath found out an infallible medicine, after the patient is dead."
Jonathan Swift (1667-1745). Political Lying. Vol. III. Seventeenth Century. Henry Craik, ed. 1916. English Prose
 
Jul 2011
4,029
6,055
UK/Australia
#6
I have noticed a worrying trend recently.

As most have probably noticed, this forum is filled to the brim with great, steaming mounds of horseshit. A significant proportion of threads are begun by someone wheeling in a particularly fetid pile and smearing it all over the opening post.

This is not the worrying trend I'm talking about, nor is it a criticism of this forum - that's just what internet forums are like.

What I do find worrying, is a distressingly common response to this textual pollution. Rather than explaining why it's to be dismissed, perhaps by pointing out the factual errors, the poor logic, or the information concealed, several posters think the appropriate response is instead, this:



What's most concerning, is that sometimes this approach is chosen even when the info provided in the source is not actually wrong. Even the most deranged whackjobs, after all, sometimes base their arguments on things connected to the real world.

So, Poster A will share a story about the gub'mint doing xyz, and will state that therefore George Soros rapes babies while he discusses his plans to force everyone to be gay Muslims with Hilary Clinton.

And then Poster B shows us a whackjobometer asserting that Poster A's source is blleeaargh!!!111!!!

But what's this supposed to establish? In this hypothetical scenario, the government really did xyz. The authority of the source is not relevant - the same information was carried by the BBC, by CNN, by Fox, by Breitbart, by the Socialist Worker, etc etc etc., because it's true. The approach here is to point out that Poster A's disturbingly graphic fantasies about aging Jewish billionaires do not follow from the story's factual kernel.

If, instead of doing this, you post a whackjobometer, it doesn't look to me like a win for your argument. Instead, it makes me think of you whenever Poster A rants about how liberals can't think for themselves because Obama put mercury in their vaccines.

Just my two cents - do with this advise what you will.
You make an excellent point, and if the news story is carried by other, reputable media outlets - it needs to be examined on its own merits. There are, however, instances wherein these stories are not available upon said reputable sources, and the medium concerned is obviously fringe-level with a specific agenda, in which case, there is a need to question the impartiality of the source. Christian Martyr Daily is unlikely to have an entirely balanced view in respect of Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, or even secular issues, and no reasonable person should expect otherwise. Sources published in support of a position should always be subject to scrutiny and cross-reference.
 

Blues63

Moderator
Dec 2014
14,194
11,893
Tatooine
#7
Another stultifying trend is to dismiss the source as 'liberal', as in the case of let's say, Snopes, or dismissing it in the case of Wikipedia as a source that anyone can edit.

In order to avoid having the debate bog down in this silliness, I propose that one still uses these sources, but link to the original source in the bibliography for the purposes of the debate (after checking and cross referencing for accuracy of course). The parrots won't know the difference and it will save one much time.
 
Likes: caffeine
Oct 2014
33,166
6,066
C-A-N-A-D-A-Eh
#8
Another stultifying trend is to dismiss the source as 'liberal', as in the case of let's say, Snopes, or dismissing it in the case of Wikipedia as a source that anyone can edit.

In order to avoid having the debate bog down in this silliness, I propose that one still uses these sources, but link to the original source in the bibliography for the purposes of the debate (after checking and cross referencing for accuracy of course). The parrots won't know the difference and it will save one much time.
Snopes can be demonstrated to have a leftist lean... hell, they recently tried a measure to try and remedy that appearance (too little too late).

Wikipedia is a great source for encyclopedic knowledge, however, any subject that can be politicized will get defined with a leftist slant, to the degree where there have been documented examples where contributors have been banned from contributing for adding documented facts that impact the desired narrative.

I do find the trend of simply dismissing sources makes sourcing into something of a dick measuring contest... my "source" is "bigger".

I'm not sure on a solution, but putting the "I didnt read" stamp that people get from MBFC is counter productive at best.
 
May 2014
29,423
19,808
Missouri
#9
I have noticed a worrying trend recently.

As most have probably noticed, this forum is filled to the brim with great, steaming mounds of horseshit. A significant proportion of threads are begun by someone wheeling in a particularly fetid pile and smearing it all over the opening post.

This is not the worrying trend I'm talking about, nor is it a criticism of this forum - that's just what internet forums are like.

What I do find worrying, is a distressingly common response to this textual pollution. Rather than explaining why it's to be dismissed, perhaps by pointing out the factual errors, the poor logic, or the information concealed, several posters think the appropriate response is instead, this:



What's most concerning, is that sometimes this approach is chosen even when the info provided in the source is not actually wrong. Even the most deranged whackjobs, after all, sometimes base their arguments on things connected to the real world.

So, Poster A will share a story about the gub'mint doing xyz, and will state that therefore George Soros rapes babies while he discusses his plans to force everyone to be gay Muslims with Hilary Clinton.

And then Poster B shows us a whackjobometer asserting that Poster A's source is blleeaargh!!!111!!!

But what's this supposed to establish? In this hypothetical scenario, the government really did xyz. The authority of the source is not relevant - the same information was carried by the BBC, by CNN, by Fox, by Breitbart, by the Socialist Worker, etc etc etc., because it's true. The approach here is to point out that Poster A's disturbingly graphic fantasies about aging Jewish billionaires do not follow from the story's factual kernel.

If, instead of doing this, you post a whackjobometer, it doesn't look to me like a win for your argument. Instead, it makes me think of you whenever Poster A rants about how liberals can't think for themselves because Obama put mercury in their vaccines.

Just my two cents - do with this advise what you will.
I like this post so much, I'm quoting it to explicitly say so. :)
 
Jun 2013
18,348
16,127
Here
#10
View attachment 24060

Whenever I see links from the site referred it always makes me think of this one. View attachment 24061
Snopes can be demonstrated to have a leftist lean... hell, they recently tried a measure to try and remedy that appearance (too little too late).

Wikipedia is a great source for encyclopedic knowledge, however, any subject that can be politicized will get defined with a leftist slant, to the degree where there have been documented examples where contributors have been banned from contributing for adding documented facts that impact the desired narrative.

I do find the trend of simply dismissing sources makes sourcing into something of a dick measuring contest... my "source" is "bigger".

I'm not sure on a solution, but putting the "I didnt read" stamp that people get from MBFC is counter productive at best.

Good "argument"? or good demonstration of what the OP I believe, intended to point out?
 
Likes: bmanmcfly