Chatrooms, Message Boards
and Discussion Forums

W   
hen first coming to the Web (via AOL), I tried out the varieties of communications media then and now available. None suited my purposes except for the personal web page.

The chief reason is that all chat-forum types degenerate into sexual inuendo, name calling and the ever curious "Guru-Sychophant" phenonmenon.

Every year or so I post something in one of these to see if they are degenerating further or just stay the same. My conclusion is that they have degenerated somewhat but have just about hit as low a point as they can go.

They started out bad but there were always just a few neophytes who expected something more philosophical and intellectual. After a few posts they gave up and moved on. When the last neophyte leaves the remaining "elo-trash" can try feeding on their own carcasses ;o)

Here is a sample of what I call 'guru-sychophant'.


Subject: Re: Alternative Theory:
Date: 11/2/98 2:26 AM Central Standard Time
From: Ebtex ... This is my post

There is no dark matter. This is what everyone is afraid of. They can't conceive of any alternative. You have to go back to Newton.

If you consider the universe as a "logical" entity rather than a "physical" one there is a simple explanation. (in greater detail on my site at "ebtx.com")

Briefly, imagine an external force squeezing a "bag of galaxies". As they are compressed they speed up adiabatically ... just like air.

That force is not gravity. It is its logical "concomitant", e.g. if Newton postulates that matter attracts matter we are also obliged to state that empty space attracts empty space and that space repels matter. The only true observable here is that matter "clumps".

In gravity, likes attract and opposites repel. There are two logical players: 1) Gravity , 2) Space. We have then four permutations to consider ... Newton's- 1/1 and three others... 1/2 , 2/1 , 2/2 ....... Get it?

If you accept this tac ... all those problems iron out ... Q close to 1 ... galactic rotational curves ... virial theory problems ... walls of galaxies ... voids ... flatness problem.

Just think about this crude analogy ... if dirt settles out of muddy water, we could also say that the water was repelled by the dirt or the dirt was repelled by the water or the dirt attracted other dirt or water attracts other water.

We are prejudiced against seeing empty space as an active player because we are made out of matter. But there is no "a priori logical" basis for such a prejudice.


Their Comments:
Subject: Re: Alternative Theory:
Date: 11/2/98 4:48 AM Central Standard Time
From: FrankEReed

"There is no dark matter. This is what everyone is afraid of. They can't conceive of any alternative. "

Quack.
"Just think about this crude analogy ... if dirt settles out of muddy water, we could also say that the water was repelled by the dirt or the dirt was repelled by the water or the dirt attracted other dirt or water attracts other water."

Yup. Quack, quack.


Subject: Re: Alternative Theory:
Date: 11/2/98 6:22 AM Central Standard Time
From: BPL man

[There is no dark matter. ]

How do you know?

[This is what everyone is afraid of.]

I'm afraid of heights and physical threats. Dark matter doesn't really provoke any fear in me. In fact, I rather like the idea.

[ They can't conceive of any alternative. ]
Who?
[You have to go back to Newton.]
He's, like, dead.


Subject: Re: Alternative Theory:
Date: 11/2/98 5:31 PM Central Standard Time
From: JSHAFFERMD

[You have to go back to Newton.]
He's, like, dead.
LOL!!! That's Entertainment. - Joy
Yup. Quack, quack.


Subject: Re: Alternative Theory:neutrinos
Date: 11/6/98 2:59 PM Central Standard Time
From: KMart13

Am I hearing ducks in here? Are they in season yet?
Kevin


Subject: Re: Alternative Theory:neutrinos
Date: 11/6/98 5:59 PM Central Standard Time
From: JSHAFFERMD

[ Am I hearing ducks in here? Are they in season yet? - Kevin]
Yep, just spotted a mallard and a wood duck, both vocalizing with great enthusiasm


Notice the difference in the posts.
I gave a substantive theory, i.e. something you can disagree with and perhaps even quantify. They came back with simple "off the cuff" remarks which cause the forum to degenerate into a chat room.

Mr. Reed is one of the resident "gurus" on AOL, i.e. one who can quote John Gribbin verbatim. He posts a remark and the others (his p-sychophants) chime in when he "scent-marks" the trail. All such types have this in common ... they have no new ideas of their own. They can't generate any but secretly wish they could. So the only alternative is to set up as self-appointed "guardians of the people" protecting all of us ... selflessly ... from the threat of new ideas.

This is standard operating procedure and I expect this. Apparently, the general rule of such chat-forums is "Bad talk drives out good" . This makes sense since it takes some time to formulate a respectable post and one tends not to hang around when one is belittled or insulted. After all, participation isn't mandatory. Why waste one's time on such people?

And they don't ... they go.

Only neophytes come here now. There is a steady supply but sometime when the Web has grown to its maximum population they will have less to "feed on" and these forums should collapse into true, full-fledged chat rooms without the pretense of "a subject".

What is needed is a moderated forum. In this type a person is $ PAID $ to act as a guard. You must pass your post through his judgement to get to the board. He simply deletes everything like "Yes, I agree", "You're an idiot" or anything not pertaining to the subject being discussed. This is the only way to maintain a respectable community discussion board.

Those looking for people who are serious about ideas ...

... should take their business to the Web where it is actually possible to find new ideas seriously presented. You might have to look long and hard but it's probably there ... somewhere.

That's where we go after we've seen Pareeeee!



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