Why? I hear you cry! Is this some sort of oppression on our views? Don't we have the right to free speech?
Well, no, you don't. But I’ll come onto that later.
Now I’m going to use this very appropriate example to explain my points:
"Arguing on the internet is like running in the special Olympics, even if you win, you're still retarded."
Now, does this make you angry? Are you willing to give your life for the cause of disabled people? Does it boil up your blood and make you want to rip the head off a chicken? Yes? Good! It shows you have spunk. The problem here is, we don't care. In fact, when it comes to arguing, apart from the two people doing it, no one really cares.
Now, however, there is a difference between an argument and a debate; debates don't have;
1) Swearing (unless it's being used as a point in your reason)
2) Insulting (Absolutely not, usually the starting point of an argument)
3) Random points made without backup (either source or explanation)
4) Flailing of arms.
Any of the above points immediately causes the debate to become an argument between two people. This also forces the debate to become redundant, as once no sources or explanations are used there is no truth, ergo no absolution can be formed. It also alienates everyone else who might have been enjoying the debate.
Now, this doesn't cover all the types of clashes that occur, but I’ll try my best to explain all of them:
Contrary to popular belief, there are subtle differences between types of flaming, the word does not have one meaning.
1) The 'random insults with absolutely no points at all' flaming.
A typical argument goes like this.
No way fool! That car is RED!
Don't be so stupid you retarded idiot, its BLUE!
Whereas this type of flaming goes:
Yeah well I DID YOUR MOTHER YOU PENARSE!
DON'T LIE, SHE DOESN'T DO TRANSVESTITES!
Etc etc, this is the most pointless form, as it goes absolutely nowhere and is a total waste of bandwidth.
2) 'Everyone jump on the bandwagon' flaming.
This is the most common form, and we're all guilty of it, although it doesn't make it right. This occurs when someone says something really stupid or offensive, and then everyone on the planet feels it's their duty to call them an idiot. Its the 'all vs. one' scenario, and makes you no better than an episode of Big Brother. So if someone has already called them an idiot and explained why, don't do it again! If you have something really important to add to the conversation, then add it, just don't repeat what's already been said. Said. Said. Said.
That covers most of the types. So realise people, that at the end of the day you are not going to influence anyone buy screaming things at them with 'sh*t', 'f*ck' and 'testicular parasite' added to your sentences.
Moral arguments? Don't bother! When you're about to click the reply button, ask yourself, 'When was the last time I won a moral argument in real life?'. Realise that on the internet, people are safely behind keyboards and miles of cable, and are going to say things they usually wouldn't around real people. Remember this, and don't rise to them, as even with a debate it will come to no end, there is no chance.
And a couple of tips about us admin/mods:
1) Treat us with respect, we're not just here to censor, we help run the forum and keep it going. Remember that we provide a free service for you.
2) You do have no rights here. At all.
3) Our word is final, no questions asked. If there is a problem with a decision we will discuss it amongst ourselves, it's not your problem, don't make it yours.
4) We are not oppressing opinion, ever. This is why most of us do not like getting into debates, because when someone puts something insulting that needs to be removed, we get accused of 'oppressing opinion' and being all 'fascist'. It's not. If you want to have a debate don't be stupid, post nicely.
So, just follow these rules and you'll be fine:
A) Be nice
B) Don't swear
C) Think before you click
D) Don't say you're going to beat someone up, it makes you look like an idiot as we all know you're not going to.
E) The people behind the keyboards are still human, they have feelings, emotions and their own opinions. This about this before you lay into someone.