1432: "The Sake of Argument"

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby gmalivuk » Fri Oct 10, 2014 9:08 pm UTC

Invertin wrote:Again, 'you guys', assuming I am one of the people who think that social progression is bad.
No, I assumed you were one of the people who attribute Tumblr's toxicity primarily or at least largely to people whom other people call meanieheads. And since the vast majority of people whom other people call meanieheads, and thus the only portion large enough to make it into a first approximation of "what Tumblr is like", are actually quite reasonable in their goals and methods, and commit or promote no atrocity greater than telling cishet white dudes they need to shut the fuck up for a second, I was left to conclude that you were one of the people who had a problem with that sort of behavior.

Foelhe wrote:
VDZ wrote:The problem here is that both sides feel that the other side is the cause and that their own side is innocent. And it's happening in this very thread.
I don't think my side is innocent, but I deal with assholes on my side. If a feminist was saying something transphobic to a trans guy, you bet your ass I'd call her out on it. Anti-SJW don't do that, at least in my experience. Obviously my experience isn't proof, but it's what I have to go with.
Yeah, it's kind of similar to the conflict between MRAs and feminists. The only ones I see calling out actual problems within feminism are other feminists, while MRAs mostly blame the problems (they believe) men face on feminism as an effort to attack feminism, without ever actually doing much to address those problems. (For example there are a lot more feminists who speak out in support of real live male abuse victims than self-described MRAs, despite the latter's continued insistence that feminists are the ones who don't care about male victims.)
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby HungryHobo » Fri Oct 10, 2014 9:18 pm UTC

Foelhe wrote:Assholes. If you need something more exact it'd depend on what the person's doing wrong. Bigots. Fanatics, maybe. We could come up with others, given time.


I'm assuming he was looking for a term that singled them out from all the assholes in the universe and specified them as assholes who are nominally linked to social justice movements vs assholes who are linked to stormfront.

If you're a Christian you can still single out the extremist-fundamentalist-christians who picket abortion clinics as a seperate group from yourself without pretending they're not chrisitan by insisting that people not refer to them in a Christian-associated way at all and instead just call them assholes.

If you're a motorist you can single out drunk-drivers as a bad subgroup without insisting that they not be called "drivers" at all and instead be called just "assholes"

Would you be happy with "asshole-SJW's" , "SJW-Extremists"?
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Invertin » Fri Oct 10, 2014 9:20 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
Invertin wrote:Again, 'you guys', assuming I am one of the people who think that social progression is bad.
No, I assumed you were one of the people who attribute Tumblr's toxicity primarily or at least largely to people whom other people call meanieheads. And since the vast majority of people whom other people call meanieheads, and thus the only portion large enough to make it into a first approximation of "what Tumblr is like", are actually quite reasonable in their goals and methods, and commit or promote no atrocity greater than telling cishet white dudes they need to shut the fuck up for a second, I was left to conclude that you were one of the people who had a problem with that sort of behavior.


The thing about tumblr is that it is designed such that you very rarely see the full scope of any social group outside of your circle of friends or associates or whatever you happen to follow and whoever they happen to follow. While the follow/reblog thing can make it a pretty damn big web, the sheer scale of the site and the fact that you don't really see any sign of the parts of the site that are not in that social web means that one person's tumblr might be full of nothing but warhammer memes and another person's might be a neo-nazi child porn haven. "I didn't see the problem, so I doubt it exists" is pretty naive.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Pfhorrest » Fri Oct 10, 2014 9:21 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:It is possible to say that you don't mind people adding their own captions to your pictures. It's even possible specifically invite people to say what they'd do to your body with or without your consent, if that's the sort of thing you're into. At no point would you have to lay out the exact word-for-word content of an acceptable message.

Those are things that the original poster can do to say what is or isn't acceptable. The question was how someone else could inquire about what is or isn't acceptable (without in the process saying something potentially unacceptable). And implied in the issue is what the default assumptions should be if nothing is explicitly stated on the matter. Are people only allowed to say things which someone has previously declared welcome, and should keep quiet otherwise? Or only disallowed from saying things that have been explicitly declared unwelcome, and may say anything else otherwise?

When I say "rapey" I mean specifcally having to do with rape. As in, explicitly describing the person as being raped or deserving rape.

Ok thanks, that clears that up. (Although then the idea of someone making such comments with consent seems to verge on incoherence).

But unsolicited sexual advances added to someone else's intellectual property without their consent is also a shitty thing to do, and if you can't think of any other way to hit on someone I feel bad for potential targets of your "romantic" advances.


I wonder if maybe I'm not familiar with the kind of sites you're thinking of, because you said "comments" before and now you're saying "captions", and "someone else's intellectual property". I've been picturing a scenario where someone posts something on a site, and then other people are able to post comments in response to that thing, which can turn into discussions — something like YouTube or Imgur or Reddit. A "caption" to me sounds like something only the original poster should be able to add, something that appears to be a part of the original content rather than commentary on it. What sites are you thinking of and how do they function?

Either way, if someone's intentionally posting their "intellectual property" in a place that people are able to add comments/captions/whatever to it, then "that's my intellectual property!" stops being much of a defense against anything. They're of course free to react and respond to those comments however they like, or even take down their submission from public scrutiny. But anything aside from response or withdrawal is like putting a statue in a public square and then trying to control what the people looking at it are saying about it. The sculptor may certainly feel hurt by some of the things said and may argue with other people about the things they say, and can take the statue down if they're tired of what people are saying about it, or exhibit it only in private areas where only select people whose opinions they value are able to see and discuss it. But if they put it up in the public square where everyone can see and talk about it, nobody has any obligation to curb their speech to only things that the artist would approve of.

Also I hope that that "you" you're using is a generic one and not directed at me personally.
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Invertin » Fri Oct 10, 2014 9:26 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:
But unsolicited sexual advances added to someone else's intellectual property without their consent is also a shitty thing to do, and if you can't think of any other way to hit on someone I feel bad for potential targets of your "romantic" advances.


I wonder if maybe I'm not familiar with the kind of sites you're thinking of, because you said "comments" before and now you're saying "captions", and "someone else's intellectual property". I've been picturing a scenario where someone posts something on a site, and then other people are able to post comments in response to that thing, which can turn into discussions — something like YouTube or Imgur or Reddit. A "caption" to me sounds like something only the original poster should be able to add, something that appears to be a part of the original content rather than commentary on it. What sites are you thinking of and how do they function?


Welcome to tumblr.

A basic summary is that anyone can post images, text, videos etc. and anyone can then 'reblog' that post, which basically just takes the post and puts it on their blog too with a link to the original post, turning the site into a cyclic loop of people following other blogs, and reblogging stuff they approve of, passing posts around forever.

Unfortunately this means 'removing the original post to avoid the comments' doesn't work.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument

Postby pareidolon » Fri Oct 10, 2014 9:30 pm UTC

Vanzetti wrote:Is it just me, or is Randall starting to exhibit the symptoms of the SJW-plague? I don't want XKCD to go in the direction of Sinfest...


Personally I don't think Sinfest was ever funny. I do like some of its artwork, which is something I rarely (thought not never) say about xkcd. It continues to have some cool segments, but handpuppets in the sky and devil booths just doesn't have humor without something else that it never managed to find. You know what this and #1357 (and now that I think about it, Wednesday's comic), really remind me of, it's Munroe's promotional material and infographics that aren't part of xkcd. If the strip is devolving, it's becoming more like that, and mind you most of the informational "comics" he does (eg. "Lakes and Oceans") are often enjoyable and interesting.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Foelhe » Fri Oct 10, 2014 9:32 pm UTC

HungryHobo wrote:I'm assuming he was looking for a term that singled them out from all the assholes in the universe and specified them as assholes who are nominally linked to social justice movements vs assholes who are linked to stormfront.

If you're a Christian you can still single out the extremist-fundamentalist-christians who picket abortion clinics as a seperate group from yourself without pretending they're not chrisitan by insisting that people not refer to them in a Christian-associated way at all and instead just call them assholes.

If you're a motorist you can single out drunk-drivers as a bad subgroup without insisting that they not be called "drivers" at all and instead be called just "assholes"

Would you be happy with "asshole-SJW's" , "SJW-Extremists"?


Pretty much any use of meaniehead is going to get people's guard up at this point. *sigh* To be honest, I kind of feel like JudeMorrigan has the right of it. You could come up with a new phrase, for awhile, but you'd have to figure out how to keep bigots from grabbing it and running it into the ground, and I've got no idea how to do that. Same thing happened to PC Police, and it wouldn't surprise me if there have been other times. Sorry.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Pfhorrest » Fri Oct 10, 2014 9:49 pm UTC

Invertin wrote:Welcome to tumblr.

A basic summary is that anyone can post images, text, videos etc. and anyone can then 'reblog' that post, which basically just takes the post and puts it on their blog too with a link to the original post, turning the site into a cyclic loop of people following other blogs, and reblogging stuff they approve of, passing posts around forever.

Unfortunately this means 'removing the original post to avoid the comments' doesn't work.

Thank you for the summary, I guess I understand a little better now. I'm pretty much completely unfamiliar with tumblr except as an occasional reader when someone links me there; I've never actually used it as a member.

So when things are "reblogged", I gather that they can add comments ("captions"?) to the thing they reblogged. Do those show up as though they are a part of the original content? What I recall seeing from my sporadic visits was things that looked like they were clearly comments on someone else's work: "hey here's this thing I saw, I think this about it and would like to add/respond...".

Anyway, even with reblogging making it hard to retract something from public sphere, that's hardly new to the internet. Going back to the sculptor analogy: if they take down their statue out of the public square because they didn't like what people were saying, but other people took pictures of it, or even just remember seeing it, and continue to discuss it, the sculptor has no right co control that discourse. If I don't like the responses to this post and delete it later, do I get to demand that people no longer discuss the things I said? Can I forbid people from taking screenshots of it and discussing it by proxy through them?

None of this is to defend the quality or appropriateness of any comments made. People say abhorrent things that it'd be better they didn't say, in every medium, all the time. I'm not defending any of those things. I'm just saying that shouting about what people are or aren't allowed to say is baseless, in a public space which is not under their private control to actually rightfully exclude people from the conversation. I can say what people are or aren't allowed to say in my house, and throw them out if they disobey; but I can't say what people are or aren't allowed to say, even about me personally, to each other in public. (Though I might be able to collect damages if the things they say can be shown to cause me harm).
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Foelhe » Fri Oct 10, 2014 10:09 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:None of this is to defend the quality or appropriateness of any comments made. People say abhorrent things that it'd be better they didn't say, in every medium, all the time. I'm not defending any of those things. I'm just saying that shouting about what people are or aren't allowed to say is baseless, in a public space which is not under their private control to actually rightfully exclude people from the conversation. I can say what people are or aren't allowed to say in my house, and throw them out if they disobey; but I can't say what people are or aren't allowed to say, even about me personally, to each other in public. (Though I might be able to collect damages if the things they say can be shown to cause me harm).


There's a paradox in, "I can't say what people are or aren't allowed to say," though. I might not be able to enforce my rules (unless I own Tumblr, in which case I absolutely can), but I see zero problems with yelling at people who are abusing other people.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Pfhorrest » Fri Oct 10, 2014 10:20 pm UTC

Foelhe wrote:There's a paradox in, "I can't say what people are or aren't allowed to say," though. I might not be able to enforce my rules (unless I own Tumblr, in which case I absolutely can), but I see zero problems with yelling at people who are abusing other people.

Right, and that's why I included reactions and responses as perfectly reasonable things. Going back to the sculptor, and something analogous to the topic at hand: say the sculptor is a woman and the sculpture is of herself, maybe at a moment of great emotional import to her, not showing off her body but meant to express how she felt at that moment, or whatever. But everybody standing around is saying nothing but "dam she got a fine ass! i wud split that shit in half!" And the sculptor comments somewhere that she's disgusted by how everyone is focusing solely on sexualizing the image of her body, to the neglect of the more important message of her art. That's totally reasonable. Though ungraceful, it would even be reasonable for her to stand in the public square and shout "What is WRONG with you perverts!?" at all the idiots gawking at her sculpted ass. But the moment she starts acting like she can just say that they have to stop as though that has some kind of authority over the matter, then she's lost touch, because she doesn't have any authority about what people say in public, even things about her. She has a right to be upset about them and to respond to them as she sees fit, but she doesn't have any actual authority and speaking as though she does it just ridiculous.
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Plasma Mongoose » Fri Oct 10, 2014 11:27 pm UTC

Everyone has the right to be offended.
Nobody has the right not to ever be offended.
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Pfhorrest » Sat Oct 11, 2014 12:33 am UTC

Very well put, Plasma Mongoose.

So, backtracking a bit, my thoughts on the comic and discussion that I missed last night / this morning:

I initially assumed the comic was supposed to be absurdly funny, not making any serious point. But I didn't find it funny, I just found Cueball irritating. I tried to find alternate interpretations where Cueball was making a serious point on Randall's behalf, but the only possible point I could see (a genuine, flippant criticism of legitimate forms of argument) seemed too unlikely to be true, so I fell back on the assumption that that was supposed to be absurd and therefore funny, though I wasn't laughing.

I didn't get the connection when Vanzetti thought this was related to "meanieheads" somehow.

But I get the intended referent of "meanieheads", and on reflection (and after other's comments) can see how the connection can be made. There is a faction of the social justice community that rubs me the wrong way for their, for lack of a better word, religiosity about the matter; not the content of their beliefs, about which I'm largely in agreement (I'm neither cis nor het myself, and fuck racists and sexists), but about their manner of conduct and discourse, which reminds me uncomfortably of religions fanaticism: a tribalistic focus on what could be called "dogma" and "heresy", more importance placed on appearing righteous for the sake of in-group approval than on actually being right for the right reasons, etc. (Mind you, again, I'm talking about only a subset of the community, not painting everyone with this brush). And among the behaviors common to both "meanieheads" (or whatever you'd rather call them) and traditional religious fanatics is a tendency to use rhetorical tactics to shut down discussion and shame the opposition, rather than actually defeating their arguments. And I can see how Cueball's behavior in the comic could be interpreted as such a discussion-stopping tactic, which is probably why it irritated me enough that I couldn't find it funny, even though as far as I could tell it was intended to be a joke and not a serious point.

If it were a serious point, it seems just as relevant to traditional religious fanatics as it does to "meanieheads". Discussion-stoppers are by no means limited to either of those groups either, but I'm hard pressed to think of another group besides those two which manages to preserve a pretense of intellectual and moral superiority while shutting down dissent in that way; most other examples I can think of are obvious childish insults used to dismiss someone's argument without even a pretended justification. Maybe a certain kind of self-assessed "rationalist" with only a superficial philosophical education who think they've got the right answers to everything just because they're not religious answers, etc. (E.g. people who seem to worship Bayes and Mill and assume anyone disagreeing must be some kind of fideistic absolute moralist, apparently unaware of the wholly irreligious critiques of confirmationism and consequentialism).

Actually, those guys bug me even more than the "meanieheads", who in turn bug me more than the traditional religious fanatics; not because I disagree with them more, but if anything because I agree with them more closely. Maybe there's a kind of Uncanny Valley of Belief: the more like the observer you are, the more glaring your remaining differences appear to be. The obvious bigots shutting down people for being "girly" / "queer" / "intellectual" / whatever don't even faze me cause haters gonna hate and those people are obvious idiots not worth responding to; the traditional religious fanatics only irritate me most of the time cause I've long come to expect all kinds of craziness from their direction and can easily dismiss their fallaciousness without having to respond to it; the "meanieheads" are people more like the kind of person I think of myself as as far as the content of their beliefs go but then they go off acting like the religious fanatics and it's like "no stop you're doing it wrong!"; and the, lets call them, "smug rationalists" strike me as so on point about so many things but then so fervently wrong about these obscure little minutia that it just comes off to me as "how is someone so apparently smart as you seem to be still so stubbornly wrong and closed-minded about these things?"
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby gmalivuk » Sat Oct 11, 2014 1:06 am UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:But the moment she starts acting like she can just say that they have to stop as though that has some kind of authority over the matter, then she's lost touch, because she doesn't have any authority about what people say in public, even things about her. She has a right to be upset about them and to respond to them as she sees fit, but she doesn't have any actual authority and speaking as though she does it just ridiculous.
Except, we're not talking about people verbally commenting on a sculpture, we're talking about reposting people's images on tumblr (which means removing the original caption and sometimes the link to the original creator) and adding abusive messages made without the consent of the owner of the images. Which, in case you missed or forgot or chose to ignore why I brought it up in the first place, is a violation of Tumblr's terms of service (and in some cases a violation of copyright law in addition).

So yes, actually, she does have the authority to tell them to stop, and your sculpture analogy completely fails to match reality in just about every single relevant detail.
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby HungryHobo » Sat Oct 11, 2014 2:04 am UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:And among the behaviors common to both "meanieheads" (or whatever you'd rather call them) and traditional religious fanatics is a tendency to use rhetorical tactics to shut down discussion and shame the opposition, rather than actually defeating their arguments. And I can see how Cueball's behavior in the comic could be interpreted as such a discussion-stopping tactic


I found the same thing, I've heard of some of the most complex and potent such tactics referred to as "Conceptual super-weapons".
Debate tactics where it no longer matters what's actually real, true or false, the person/group against which you use it is no longer "allowed" to be right.
The more unpleasant Fanatic-SJW types love them.
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Pfhorrest » Sat Oct 11, 2014 2:34 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
Pfhorrest wrote:But the moment she starts acting like she can just say that they have to stop as though that has some kind of authority over the matter, then she's lost touch, because she doesn't have any authority about what people say in public, even things about her. She has a right to be upset about them and to respond to them as she sees fit, but she doesn't have any actual authority and speaking as though she does it just ridiculous.
Except, we're not talking about people verbally commenting on a sculpture, we're talking about reposting people's images on tumblr (which means removing the original caption and sometimes the link to the original creator) and adding abusive messages made without the consent of the owner of the images. Which, in case you missed or forgot or chose to ignore why I brought it up in the first place, is a violation of Tumblr's terms of service (and in some cases a violation of copyright law in addition).

Well that is why I asked what sites you were talking about and how do they function, because the post of yours I responded to was not clear about that. You mentioned tumblr in an earlier part of the post, but not the paragraph I was responding to, and nothing about TOS or copyright violations, unless that was in an earlier post that I missed.

I'm still not 100% clear on what exactly is happening either. Is it like, a woman posts a pic of her and some friends at a restaurant on her blog, saying "me and the girls on a fun night out!" or something; and then, on a completely unrelated douchebag's blog, the exact same pic appears without attribution to the first woman and without her comment, but instead with the comment "some fly bitches lookin dtf" or something like that? If so, tastelessness of the comment aside, which part of that violates tumblr's TOS or copyright law? I'm assuming that tumblr's TOS includes some terms about things that are posted can be reposted by others under at least certain circumstances, otherwise reblogging would all be flatly illegal copyright violation, so the question is really about tumblr's TOS. Is it the omission of the source, or the deletion of the original comment? (And if so, is reblogging normally an automated process that automatically includes attribution and the original comment, which has to be manually circumvented by said douchebag, or do the original comments and attribution have to be manually copied/added?) Or is it the nature of the additional comment? (And if so, what exactly determines what comments are permissible or not? Something hard-coded in the TOS, some kind of flags the original blogger can set, the written word of the original blogger? And in the latter cases, what's the default in absence of specification: anything goes except what's excluded, or nothing goes except what's included?)

All honest questions, I'm trying to get a handle on the exact nature of the crime being committed here, because so far it still sounds like people circulating and commenting on photos of the statue in the public square. (With the small but possibly important — for copyright reasons, but not really moral reasons — difference that photos can't be exact reproductions of statues, while reblogged images can be exact reproductions of the original images).
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby gmalivuk » Sat Oct 11, 2014 4:37 am UTC

Right, my bad on the ToS comment, as that's something I mentioned in a different post from the one that started this tangent.

Pfhorrest wrote:I'm still not 100% clear on what exactly is happening either. Is it like, a woman posts a pic of her and some friends at a restaurant on her blog, saying "me and the girls on a fun night out!" or something; and then, on a completely unrelated douchebag's blog, the exact same pic appears without attribution to the first woman and without her comment, but instead with the comment "some fly bitches lookin dtf" or something like that?
That's shitty, but not rapey, and so it's not what I was talking about. If you're not going to remember my explanations that you've quoted and responded to on this very page, I don't see the point in continuing to reply.

(As for the rest, reposting and removing original attributions is different from reblogging with all original information intact. The one is against ToS, the other obviously isn't. But abusive language still is against their community guidelines, and so even if it's a properly reblogged photo with the original credit and source link intact, adding your own comment that implies or explicitly describes rape or incest or other criminal sexual activity to someone else's picture is not okay.)

Seriously, the terms of service and community guidelines are not all that long. In the time it's taken you to construct elaborately irrelevant analogies and then ask me a bunch of questions about the user agreement, you could probably have just read the thing yourself.
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument

Postby sotanaht » Sat Oct 11, 2014 7:19 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
Vanzetti wrote:Is it just me, or is Randall starting to exhibit the symptoms of the SJW-plague? I don't want XKCD to go in the direction of Sinfest...
Yeah, because if there's one thing plaguing the Internet these days, it's definitely a desire for too much justice.

Like, do you not get how much it sounds like you're setting yourself up as some kind of comic-book villain? When you start referring to a group of people as literal Warriors for Justice and then you oppose that group?


You realize meanieheads are effectively Knights Templar right? Mainly in the trope sense but they also have a good bit of the secret society part going for them as well.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby mvdwege » Sat Oct 11, 2014 7:51 am UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Of those two, 322 is not really SJW-like. Why? Because the whole "meaniehead" appellation isn't merely having an opinion that happens to match up with a given list...it's a description of behavior.

Complete and utter bullshit. Try making 322's point in a forum with a lot of junior devs, gamers and their assorted hangers-on, say Slashdot for example. And watch how fast you get called an meaniehead.

It's not about behaviour. It is about having an opinion. A specific one in fact: "Dude, sexism is not cool". It is almost always opposition to sexism and harassment that brings out the 'meaniehead'-shouting maladjusted.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby redbird71 » Sat Oct 11, 2014 8:26 am UTC

This comic seams to undervaluate the importance of contrapositioning. In occasions it's helpful to discuss a subject even if it appears that all the facts are cleared - as this discussion may make flaws in your argumentation visible you otherwise would not have been aware of and therefore help to strengthen your point of view....


.... or not.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby HungryHobo » Sat Oct 11, 2014 10:24 am UTC

mvdwege wrote:Complete and utter bullshit. Try making 322's point in a forum with a lot of junior devs, gamers and their assorted hangers-on, say Slashdot for example. And watch how fast you get called an meaniehead.

It's not about behaviour. It is about having an opinion. A specific one in fact: "Dude, sexism is not cool". It is almost always opposition to sexism and harassment that brings out the 'meaniehead'-shouting maladjusted.


Presenting as a religious person:Try saying something uncontroversial like "I just believe that god is all around us and cares for us" on r/Atheism.
it's not a uniquely extremist/fundamentalist position, lots of normal people who are just somewhat religious hold it but you're likely to get called a fundamentalist by at least a few assholes. That brings out the 'fundamentalist'-shouting maladjusted.

Presenting as a hetero male:Try saying something uncontroversial like "I just believe men should not be automatically assumed to be pedophiles" on certain feminist forums. It's not a uniquely extremist/MRA position but you'll still get called an MRA by at least a few assholes because it's a position associated with that group. That brings out the 'MRA'-shouting maladjusted.

Also, if you're commenting on one of your outgroups sites, you're unlikely to be doing so with regards to a currently utterly uncontroversial issue, it's vastly more likely to be something at least vaguely controversial like arguing over whether "fork his repository" is sexual/sexist. (first example that comes to mind from slashdot where someone was being called a meaniehead)
Last edited by HungryHobo on Sat Oct 11, 2014 10:45 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Klear » Sat Oct 11, 2014 10:24 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
Pfhorrest wrote:I'm still not 100% clear on what exactly is happening either. Is it like, a woman posts a pic of her and some friends at a restaurant on her blog, saying "me and the girls on a fun night out!" or something; and then, on a completely unrelated douchebag's blog, the exact same pic appears without attribution to the first woman and without her comment, but instead with the comment "some fly bitches lookin dtf" or something like that?
That's shitty, but not rapey, and so it's not what I was talking about. If you're not going to remember my explanations that you've quoted and responded to on this very page, I don't see the point in continuing to reply.


You're obviously not paying enough attention when reading Pfhorrest's posts...

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Vanzetti » Sat Oct 11, 2014 11:11 am UTC

Here's the gist of the problem.

When some fundamental islamist fanatic 10000 miles away from me claims that all who don't agree with him must be beheaded, I don't feel anything. It is expected. Such is the world. Arguing with him is impossible.

But when someone close to you says, basically, like, "we shall be tolerant and fight for equality and justice AND IF YOU DON'T AGREE WITH YOU MUST BE BEHEADED!!!" (exaggerating a little here), this is infuriating.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby mvdwege » Sat Oct 11, 2014 1:04 pm UTC

HungryHobo wrote:
mvdwege wrote:Complete and utter bullshit. Try making 322's point in a forum with a lot of junior devs, gamers and their assorted hangers-on, say Slashdot for example. And watch how fast you get called an meaniehead.

It's not about behaviour. It is about having an opinion. A specific one in fact: "Dude, sexism is not cool". It is almost always opposition to sexism and harassment that brings out the 'meaniehead'-shouting maladjusted.


Presenting as a religious person:Try saying something uncontroversial like "I just believe that god is all around us and cares for us" on r/Atheism.

Presenting as a hetero male:Try saying something uncontroversial like "I just believe men should not be automatically assumed to be pedophiles" on certain feminist forums.


You know, I could be nice about, but I have used up all my patience, so I'm just going to say it right out and then ignore you from now on: the situations you post are in no way similar. r/Atheism and 'certain feminist forums' espouse a certain worldview, and they have at least an understandbable hostile reaction to someone espousing the opposite.

A general IT-oriented forum like Slashdot has no reason to be sexist and defend sexism and harassment, and yet they do, and even mild criticism gets you slapped with the meaniehead moniker.

And finally, I don't engage with people who immediately turn a discussion into a strawman beating contest. Take your strawmen elsewhere, I am done with you.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Invertin » Sat Oct 11, 2014 2:18 pm UTC

Vanzetti wrote:When some fundamental islamist fanatic 10000 miles away from me claims that all who don't agree with him must be beheaded, I don't feel anything. It is expected. Such is the world. Arguing with him is impossible.


This is actually a pretty good example of what I was talking about with crazy people forcing themselves into the group and people taking what people claim to be instead of what they show themselves to be. Someone who shoots people and says they are islamic are treated as islamic, and people then assume that islamic people behave like that, even though anyone who actually knows a damn about islam knows that the terrorists are breaking basically all of the rules. In a more ideal world, humans would see 'I'm islamic', look at what they're actually doing, and then say 'no you're not', and the same thing should happen with so-called meanieheads who are just hateful in the opposite direction.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument

Postby addams » Sat Oct 11, 2014 3:07 pm UTC

Vanzetti wrote:
mvdwege wrote:
Vanzetti wrote:Is it just me, or is Randall starting to exhibit the symptoms of the SJW-plague? I don't want XKCD to go in the direction of Sinfest...

It is just you. Randall has always taken a stand against at least certain forms of bigotry. If you don't want Randall to go in a direction he's been travelling for most of his comic already, I suggest you leave and take XKCD out of your bookmarks.


You are quoting 2 comics from a long time ago, and which address a specific issue. It's not the same stuff at all as starting to argue against the concept of Devil's advocate.

Oh, and BTW, a much more recent 1357 also smells of SWJ. Yes, yes, I know, freedom of speech is not freedom from consequences of speech. But when you see the meanieheads revel in the bad things that happen to their opponents because of something they said, you realize that for them, freedom of speech is not a value at all. Only freedom of their own speech. To the saying "freedom of speech means the government can't arrest you for what you say", they implicitly add "but we are going to fuck you up as much as we can, because we hate you. And we are not the government, so it's legal, ha-ha!".

Yuck.
What you write has the Ring of Truth.
The fucking internet has given the cruel and common Assholes great power over others.

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Mikeski wrote:No, it's due to a seventeenth-century Russian philosopher, who said all useful communication is confrontational. Vladimir Seikov. We've just started misusing it; the same way people who say "for all intensive purposes" and "it's a mute point" do.

It's actually... "for the Seikov argument".

I want this stuck in my head.

The Seikov Argument:
All useful communication is confrontational.

That is so funny.
It brings all harmonious communication into question.

"That was easy."
"It must have been useless."

Shall I feel guilty for using the content of that communication?
It was not hard won.

...The Seikov Argument...
Glad to not be Russian.
What a burden.

They must question both easy and difficult communication.
And, in several languages. Americans have it much easier.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Foelhe » Sat Oct 11, 2014 7:24 pm UTC

Vanzetti wrote:Here's the gist of the problem.

When some fundamental islamist fanatic 10000 miles away from me claims that all who don't agree with him must be beheaded, I don't feel anything. It is expected. Such is the world. Arguing with him is impossible.

But when someone close to you says, basically, like, "we shall be tolerant and fight for equality and justice AND IF YOU DON'T AGREE WITH YOU MUST BE BEHEADED!!!" (exaggerating a little here), this is infuriating.


So, I've been mostly polite up to this point, but I'm kind of getting stuck on one point: what does any of this have to do with the Devil's Advocate thing anyway?

If we're talking about extremism, well, responding to one specific, pretty low-key criticism with, "WELL, MY ENEMIES WANT TO MURDER PEOPLE"... it might be a good idea to step back and ask if you're part of the solution or the problem.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Vanzetti » Sat Oct 11, 2014 8:01 pm UTC

Foelhe wrote:So, I've been mostly polite up to this point, but I'm kind of getting stuck on one point: what does any of this have to do with the Devil's Advocate thing anyway?


Simply. I got annoyed that Randall decided to come out against the concept of Devil's Advocate aka "Maybe My Opponent Have Something Interesting To Say". I got annoyed because this is a trend among the meaniehead crowd. It began as an opposition to trolls who use the Devil's Advocate as an excuse to repeat their horrible opinion, but turned into a fully general counterargument.

And as my original comment turned into a 4-page debate, I fear that I inadvertently trolled this forum myself. OH GOD WHAT HAVE I BECOME!!!

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Foelhe » Sat Oct 11, 2014 8:07 pm UTC

Vanzetti wrote:
Foelhe wrote:So, I've been mostly polite up to this point, but I'm kind of getting stuck on one point: what does any of this have to do with the Devil's Advocate thing anyway?


Simply. I got annoyed that Randall decided to come out against the concept of Devil's Advocate aka "Maybe My Opponent Have Something Interesting To Say". I got annoyed because this is a trend among the meaniehead crowd. It began as an opposition to trolls who use the Devil's Advocate as an excuse to repeat their horrible opinion, but turned into a fully general counterargument.

And as my original comment turned into a 4-page debate, I fear that I inadvertently trolled this forum myself. OH GOD WHAT HAVE I BECOME!!!


I guess I don't see how that fits with the other arguments on the thread, though. If meaniehead only applies to the extremists, why does criticizing the Devil's Advocate argument suddenly make Randall an extremist? (Unless this is just a Hitler Ate Sugar argument, but I'd like to give you the benefit of a doubt here.) If meaniehead counts for the whole movement, what the hell have we been arguing about for the last three pages?

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Vanzetti » Sat Oct 11, 2014 8:15 pm UTC

Foelhe wrote:I guess I don't see how that fits with the other arguments on the thread, though. If meaniehead only applies to the extremists, why does criticizing the Devil's Advocate argument suddenly make Randall an extremist? (Unless this is just a Hitler Ate Sugar argument, but I'd like to give you the benefit of a doubt here.) If meaniehead counts for the whole movement, what the hell have we been arguing about for the last three pages?


I didn't accuse Randall of becoming extremist, I wondered if he is exhibiting the symptoms of the SWJ-plague (I can't read his mind, of course). It's not all black or white.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Foelhe » Sat Oct 11, 2014 8:22 pm UTC

Vanzetti wrote:I didn't accuse Randall of becoming extremist, I wondered if he is exhibiting the symptoms of the SWJ-plague (I can't read his mind, of course). It's not all black or white.


I'm officially confused again. What does SJW-plague mean?

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Vanzetti » Sat Oct 11, 2014 8:24 pm UTC

Foelhe wrote:
Vanzetti wrote:I didn't accuse Randall of becoming extremist, I wondered if he is exhibiting the symptoms of the SWJ-plague (I can't read his mind, of course). It's not all black or white.


I'm officially confused again. What does SJW-plague mean?


A growing trend of groupthink and intolerance of dissenting opinions among ostensibly progressive, left-leaning people.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Foelhe » Sat Oct 11, 2014 8:32 pm UTC

Vanzetti wrote:A growing trend of groupthink and intolerance of dissenting opinions among ostensibly progressive, left-leaning people.


So... you think Randall's intolerant of people who like Devil's Advocate arguments? Or you think Randall would only dislike Devil's Advocate arguments because of groupthink? I'm still not making heads or tails of this.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby addams » Sat Oct 11, 2014 8:41 pm UTC

Foelhe wrote:
Vanzetti wrote:A growing trend of groupthink and intolerance of dissenting opinions among ostensibly progressive, left-leaning people.


So... you think Randall's intolerant of people who like Devil's Advocate arguments? Or you think Randall would only dislike Devil's Advocate arguments because of groupthink? I'm still not making heads or tails of this.

Me, either.
I think the comic is sweet.
It is a peek at a private moment between friends.

Off for a Walk and Talk.
A private moment.

The comic could have been much shorter and less funny.
CueBall might have said, "Stop being so fucking Serious! All the fucking Time!"

But, No.
He led PonyTail to an ARGH.

Is he a sick bastard or an interesting friend?
I have no idea. The stick figure is charming.
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Klear » Sat Oct 11, 2014 8:59 pm UTC

Foelhe wrote:
Vanzetti wrote:A growing trend of groupthink and intolerance of dissenting opinions among ostensibly progressive, left-leaning people.


So... you think Randall's intolerant of people who like Devil's Advocate arguments? Or you think Randall would only dislike Devil's Advocate arguments because of groupthink? I'm still not making heads or tails of this.


He means that this comic reminded him of the rhetoric of what he calls the meaniehead crowd and that this kind of rhetoric is plaguing the internet right now, so he'd hate to see Randall to be a part of that.

(correct me if I'm wrong here)

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Foelhe » Sat Oct 11, 2014 9:27 pm UTC

Klear wrote:He means that this comic reminded him of the rhetoric of what he calls the meaniehead crowd and that this kind of rhetoric is plaguing the internet right now, so he'd hate to see Randall to be a part of that.

(correct me if I'm wrong here)


I don't think rhetoric is the word you mean here. Rhetoric is about how your phrase your arguments, and Randall's using the same rhetorical device he's used in other comics. Or was there a particular line that jumped out at you?

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby xtifr » Sat Oct 11, 2014 10:36 pm UTC

Klear wrote:
Foelhe wrote:
Vanzetti wrote:A growing trend of groupthink and intolerance of dissenting opinions among ostensibly progressive, left-leaning people.


So... you think Randall's intolerant of people who like Devil's Advocate arguments? Or you think Randall would only dislike Devil's Advocate arguments because of groupthink? I'm still not making heads or tails of this.


He means that this comic reminded him of the rhetoric of what he calls the meaniehead crowd and that this kind of rhetoric is plaguing the internet right now, so he'd hate to see Randall to be a part of that.

(correct me if I'm wrong here)

That's pretty amusing, because it reminds me of the rhetoric of MRAs and the anti-SJ crowd, and yet, I didn't for an instant think it meant that Randall had become an MRA or a member of Stormfront.

It was an amusing riff on metadebate (how do you debate), and it's easy to see any group which opposes the use of sound, logical arguments in the comic. Why meanieheads were singled out says to me a whole lot more about the person doing the singling than it does about Randall or the comic itself.

Of course, I don't hang out on Tumblr, and my main exposure to the whole Tumbler vs. MRA thing comes from the fact that my aunt is a female (obviously) Science Fiction writer who therefore gets regularly attacked by the anti-SJW crowd simply for her lack of a penis, and the fact that she doesn't think that lack disqualifies her from writing SF. If these truly horrible meanieheads do exist (which I admit is entirely possible), they don't seem to be spreading out into the mainstream of SF or tech-related blogs, while the extremist asshole anti-SJWs definitely are.
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Klear » Sat Oct 11, 2014 10:38 pm UTC

Foelhe wrote:
Klear wrote:He means that this comic reminded him of the rhetoric of what he calls the meaniehead crowd and that this kind of rhetoric is plaguing the internet right now, so he'd hate to see Randall to be a part of that.

(correct me if I'm wrong here)


I don't think rhetoric is the word you mean here. Rhetoric is about how your phrase your arguments, and Randall's using the same rhetorical device he's used in other comics. Or was there a particular line that jumped out at you?


Hey, I didn't even know what meaniehead meant until it came up in this thread. I'm just trying to help you to understand what Vanzetti is trying to say in my opinion.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Foelhe » Sat Oct 11, 2014 10:51 pm UTC

xtifr wrote:That's pretty amusing, because it reminds me of the rhetoric of MRAs and the anti-SJ crowd, and yet, I didn't for an instant think it meant that Randall had become an MRA or a member of Stormfront.

It was an amusing riff on metadebate (how do you debate), and it's easy to see any group which opposes the use of sound, logical arguments in the comic. Why meanieheads were singled out says to me a whole lot more about the person doing the singling than it does about Randall or the comic itself.

Of course, I don't hang out on Tumblr, and my main exposure to the whole Tumbler vs. MRA thing comes from the fact that my aunt is a female (obviously) Science Fiction writer who therefore gets regularly attacked by the anti-SJW crowd simply for her lack of a penis, and the fact that she doesn't think that lack disqualifies her from writing SF. If these truly horrible meanieheads do exist (which I admit is entirely possible), they don't seem to be spreading out into the mainstream of SF or tech-related blogs, while the extremist asshole anti-SJWs definitely are.


That's a familiar story, yeah. There's been an explosion of people doing the same thing to female video game devs lately.

Klear wrote:
Foelhe wrote:
Klear wrote:He means that this comic reminded him of the rhetoric of what he calls the meaniehead crowd and that this kind of rhetoric is plaguing the internet right now, so he'd hate to see Randall to be a part of that.

(correct me if I'm wrong here)


I don't think rhetoric is the word you mean here. Rhetoric is about how your phrase your arguments, and Randall's using the same rhetorical device he's used in other comics. Or was there a particular line that jumped out at you?


Hey, I didn't even know what meaniehead meant until it came up in this thread. I'm just trying to help you to understand what Vanzetti is trying to say in my opinion.


Right, didn't mean it as a slam, sorry. I'm just trying to ask for clarification. Hypocritically.

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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby xtifr » Sat Oct 11, 2014 11:03 pm UTC

Foelhe wrote:
xtifr wrote:That's pretty amusing, because it reminds me of the rhetoric of MRAs and the anti-SJ crowd, and yet, I didn't for an instant think it meant that Randall had become an MRA or a member of Stormfront.

It was an amusing riff on metadebate (how do you debate), and it's easy to see any group which opposes the use of sound, logical arguments in the comic. Why meanieheads were singled out says to me a whole lot more about the person doing the singling than it does about Randall or the comic itself.

Of course, I don't hang out on Tumblr, and my main exposure to the whole Tumbler vs. MRA thing comes from the fact that my aunt is a female (obviously) Science Fiction writer who therefore gets regularly attacked by the anti-SJW crowd simply for her lack of a penis, and the fact that she doesn't think that lack disqualifies her from writing SF. If these truly horrible meanieheads do exist (which I admit is entirely possible), they don't seem to be spreading out into the mainstream of SF or tech-related blogs, while the extremist asshole anti-SJWs definitely are.


That's a familiar story, yeah. There's been an explosion of people doing the same thing to female video game devs lately.


Indeed. And in comics. I have a lifelong friend who is an editor at a comics company (not one of the big two, but one of the larger of the secondary publishers), and happens to be female, so that also strikes close to home for me.

Just to be clear, I wasn't criticizing what you or Klear wrote. I think you/he were essentially correct in how we got into the whole meaniehead thing in this thread. I was just riffing off what you guys said.

eta: I may be getting a little confused about who exactly said what, but so far, I'm not sure it matters.
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Re: 1432: "The Sake of Argument"

Postby Eternal Density » Sat Oct 11, 2014 11:40 pm UTC

RAGBRAIvet wrote:Another phrase we could do without is "It goes without saying".
So then why are you saying it?

Sometimes in a conversation I say "You know, it goes without saying." Without specifying what "it" is. Because that's the correct usage of that phrase, right?
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