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  1. #1
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    Default Being 'into politics '

    I don't mean John Eden do your bit for the community politics I mean the sadcase 'debates' I see on Facebook due to being friends with some of you lot.
    About 99 posts on one thread people who are all exactly the same and drink together getting all hot and bothered about things Completely beyond their control and understanding, calling each other wankers and fucking wankers etc. What's all that about. It's even worse than being really into sport.

  2. #2
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    Rowing on social media seems about enactment really. "I can't win this fight IRL - or do fuck all about it - so I have it online". I've been trying to give it up thus the dearth of posts from me as of late. I do learn stuff from it sometimes, it depends on who you follow. People who are worth following i.e. those who have original interesting thoughts on a regular basis and can be bothered to post them, are relatively rare though. Cat gifs are less demanding.

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    We just had an election campaign, Brexit, Labour leadership etc. - no one wonder there's been a lot of argument, these are all big events and we're are kinda encouraged to do this by the powers that be - changing profile pics, Twitter ribbons etc. - rowing with others would seem a natural extension of this. Then there's the sinister side of - how Facebook is mining our date, organised trolling, Cambrige Analytics etc.

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    I think there is some merit in arguing online if it helps clarify your ideas/positions. That has certainly helped me over the years. It has the added bonus that it can be done during working hours too.

    There's nothing wrong with trying to develop your understanding of the world.

    And of course it can be a way of making connections with people.

    But as Danny would no doubt agree, this can very easily tip over into sublimation - politics as a way of venting your unrelated frustrations. Everyone sits at their desks furiously typing about Palestine, when they could be talking to each other and organising around issues in their workplace.

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  6. #5

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    Some of the bile is really incredible. Not talking about hatred vented at the cops, government, neo-nazis, bailiffs, etc, but casually telling people on your own fricking side that they're cunts and filth, etc, often on a really minor point.

    Actually, it sort of reminds me of animal rights extremists. You could break into Porton Down and liberate a small army of chimps and beagles and print a dozen vegan cookery zines - but God help you if you had a leather jacket in the wardrobe. That'd be proof you were a murdering scumbag and would invalidate everything else.

    TBF, I don't know how widespread this is, though, as I gave up looking at such Twitter accounts a while ago and instantly avoid any post that starts off "We need to talk about..." I remember some unsavoury Twitter comments following K-Punk's death (which were later retracted, I'm informed) which seemed to have little to do with politics and everything to do with asocial, toxic, unpleasant fuck-ups spending way too much time on the internet.

    On sublimation - think it was Tim Pat Coogan who researched it and found that during the height of the Troubles, the amount of adults in Northern Ireland diagnosed with serious personality disorders dwindled to nearly zero.

  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by martin View Post
    TBF, I don't know how widespread this is, though, as I gave up looking at such Twitter accounts a while ago and instantly avoid any post that starts off "We need to talk about..." I remember some unsavoury Twitter comments following K-Punk's death (which were later retracted, I'm informed) which seemed to have little to do with politics and everything to do with asocial, toxic, unpleasant fuck-ups spending way too much time on the internet.
    She didn't really retract anything, just a 'sorry if offense was caused' type apology. I had a run in with the woman involved after as well. Just an awful mix of ignorance & provocation designed to elicit justifications for condemnation. A really nasty piece of work.
    Last edited by droid; 21-08-2017 at 12:01 PM.

  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by luka View Post
    I don't mean John Eden do your bit for the community politics I mean the sadcase 'debates' I see on Facebook due to being friends with some of you lot.
    About 99 posts on one thread people who are all exactly the same and drink together getting all hot and bothered about things Completely beyond their control and understanding, calling each other wankers and fucking wankers etc. What's all that about. It's even worse than being really into sport.
    I had my first ugly Facebook spat in ages over the weekend, which is...a coincidence?

    I spent far too much time in 2016 arguing online, so I mainly reserve it for Dissensus these days. Some issues are worth arguing about in small doses, but social media is largely a cesspit of personal mudslinging, and agreed that it dilutes one's energy for actually doing good in the real world.

    Smartphones are evil and I try to combat them by having a really shit one that I can use for maps and checking the football scores (a slightly superior pursuit to arguing on Facebook, as you say)

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    Yeah, Internet "discourse" has gone downhill and rightly the causes have been identified. It's the combination of social media (which isn't social at all) and ubiquitous smartphone-usage. I admit I was spending a lot of time in the 2000s in the comment sections/forums of several newspapers and news sites. You had more meaningful conversations due to the circumstances me thinks. You'd write your commentaries sitting at your desk using a PC or Laptop with specially confined time dedicated to writing comments.

    Social media is all well for spamming your products or gigs and such, but definitely not suitable for deeper conversations/exchange of ideas. Yeah, post a meme instead. People feel the need to reply as soon as they are "alerted" bc they are logged on 24/7 on their smartphones. Those "conversations" are to a great extent "Trolling by default".

    Unfortunatley, the situation won't change much in the foreseeable future since the more considerate people leave crappy FB or twitter, leaving the rather unpleasent peeps in the ring.

  11. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by firefinga View Post
    Yeah, Internet "discourse" has gone downhill and rightly the causes have been identified. It's the combination of social media (which isn't social at all) and ubiquitous smartphone-usage. I admit I was spending a lot of time in the 2000s in the comment sections/forums of several newspapers and news sites. You had more meaningful conversations due to the circumstances me thinks. You'd write your commentaries sitting at your desk using a PC or Laptop with specially confined time dedicated to writing comments.

    Social media is all well for spamming your products or gigs and such, but definitely not suitable for deeper conversations/exchange of ideas. Yeah, post a meme instead. People feel the need to reply as soon as they are "alerted" bc they are logged on 24/7 on their smartphones. Those "conversations" are to a great extent "Trolling by default".

    Unfortunatley, the situation won't change much in the foreseeable future since the more considerate people leave crappy FB or twitter, leaving the rather unpleasent peeps in the ring.
    All very true - I've always had better interaction on message boards, due to the circumstances you mention. Most message boards date from a few years before social media's ubiquity. We can all be sure that Matt is selling our data onto Coca-Cola AS FAR AS WE KNOW.

    Organised, state-sponsored trolling is definitely a thing though, which is another contaminating factor. Must be quite a low cost way to attempt to shape discourse. Not suggesting Baboon's spat was caused by Putin's agents - seems more likely it's the disembodied nature of social media - but I do think it's a real shaping force

  12. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by baboon2004 View Post
    I had my first ugly Facebook spat in ages over the weekend, which is...a coincidence?

    I spent far too much time in 2016 arguing online, so I mainly reserve it for Dissensus these days. Some issues are worth arguing about in small doses, but social media is largely a cesspit of personal mudslinging, and agreed that it dilutes one's energy for actually doing good in the real world.

    Smartphones are evil and I try to combat them by having a really shit one that I can use for maps and checking the football scores (a slightly superior pursuit to arguing on Facebook, as you say)
    It was that very spat which prompted this thread.

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  14. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by luka View Post
    It was that very spat which prompted this thread.
    nice for it to be noticed. There were a few different arguments happening in that thread, but in the 4/5 message exchange I was involved in there was a clear difference of opinion that I think is pretty important.

    I've had some pointless arguments on Fb to be sure, but I don't think arguing about whether rightwingers who affiliate/march with Nazis can be 'debated', or should rather just be fought/resisted, comes under that category...

    it's a bit odd cos it's the first time I've had an argument on Fb in ages, precisely because I thought in that case it was actually worth saying something. That may have been a mistake, because the person I chose to talk to (who I've never met) was just interested in upholding an insane opinion at all costs. Not sure about his relationship to Putin though.
    Last edited by baboon2004; 21-08-2017 at 11:11 PM.

  15. #12
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    [QUOTE=baboon2004;339641 Not sure about his relationship to Putin though.[/QUOTE]

    Sorry if that sounded like a weird comment - I meant this kinda thing: https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...an-troll-house I don't think this is what Luke is talking about in his opening post, but you do notice this sort of this kind of thing if you start reading or arguing in bigger, less interpersonal forums. Websites or or public bloggers advancing a line that is disliked by whoever is paying these goons will be systematically targeted.
    Last edited by DannyL; 22-08-2017 at 09:27 AM.

  16. #13
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    Facebook is a pox. Get off it now.

  17. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyL View Post
    Sorry if that sounded like a weird comment - I meant this kinda thing: https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...an-troll-house I don't think this is what Luke is talking about in his opening post, but you do notice this sort of this kind of thing if you start reading or arguing in bigger, less interpersonal forums. Websites or or public bloggers advancing a line that is disliked by whoever is paying these goons will be systematically targeted.
    No, not weird at all - I can well believe all of that..what might once have looked like a conspiracy theory is now simply news. I'm just amused thinking of my Fb interlocutor (who you might know cos you have friends in common) as a state-sponsored troll.

    Also amused that Facebook sparring is being dismissed by people responsible for about 83% of Dissensus flame wars in the post-Zhao era. (who incidentally still makes everyone else look like amateurs in his ability to start a social media war within seconds. It's quite remarkable)
    Last edited by baboon2004; 22-08-2017 at 08:11 PM.

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