forums are for the exchange of ideas

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crowbar

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Jan 12, 2020
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forums are for the exchange of ideas, yet when some of those ideas differ from the mods, the posts are removed.
Very un-forum like. For example, an article is posted that CLAIMS certain names of nebulas are "racist" . Folks post ON TOPIC in the forum that they don't believe the names are racist, as racism defined as:
"the belief that different races possess distinct characteristics, abilities, or qualities, especially so as to distinguish them as inferior or superior to one another. "

Since many folks disagree that the names are "racist" they said so in a forum, which is supposed to be an exchange of ideas. BANG, posts are removed faster than the implosion of a giant star.

My feedback is not to just remove posts that you disagree with, and are ON TOPIC, but maybe, just maybe, have a discussion, which is what a forum is supposed to be about.

But, I expect this post and thread to be removed, because you guys just don't agree with the free exchange of ideas.
Go ahead and prove me wrong, but I am sure you won't. I bet you guys would have celebrated when they locked Galileo Galilei up.
 
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COLGeek

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Apr 3, 2020
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Your objection has been noted. We enforce the rules for the good of the community.

Deletion is not criticism. It is a tool to prevent topics from becoming toxic. The aforementioned thread was starting to spiral downward.
 
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Jun 1, 2020
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Labels are critical for science. Unless a near-majority of any group affected by a given label denounces the term, then I would support forum discussions that could either bring honor to those who made the decision to reject what would normally be considered a helpful and descriptive label or reconsider their decision in part due to open discussions.

The key for me is objectivity, not subjectivity. If there is objective evidence the majority, or near-majority, of the party affected dislikes any given term associated with them, then a change should likely be made.

Does that objective evidence exist? My search, albeit limited and quick, suggests the opposite is true.

My great grandfather was a "cowboy", which was never a term of honor, but cowboy's are tough and their code has always been that respect must be earned. He herded cattle (not called cows, btw) up the Chisolm Trail and they encountered Indians. He reportedly kept his pistol ready, but the only result was that they gave the Indians some cattle to help their dire needs. I hope the term cowboy or Indians aren't next.
 
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shaines

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Aug 22, 2019
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forums are for the exchange of ideas, yet when some of those ideas differ from the mods, the posts are removed.
Very un-forum like. For example, an article is posted that CLAIMS certain names of nebulas are "racist" . Folks post ON TOPIC in the forum that they don't believe the names are racist, as racism defined as:
"the belief that different races possess distinct characteristics, abilities, or qualities, especially so as to distinguish them as inferior or superior to one another. "

But, I expect this post and thread to be removed, because you guys just don't agree with the free exchange of ideas.
Go ahead and prove me wrong, but I am sure you won't. I bet you guys would have celebrated when they locked Galileo Galilei up.
Hey there,

We're big proponents of productive discussions. Having discussions threads with a lot of different folks all sharing ideas is why we provide forums. That's at the foundation of everything we're doing here.

However, it's also important that when it comes to very specific topics, this isn't just a matter of "agree to disagree."

The article you cited (about recently changed names of celestial phenomenon) was a news piece that said the names had been changed, and provided a reason why the change happened. The reason for the change, by the people who changed it, was to address the perception by some that the names were racist.

This isn't an opinion piece, or a poll; it was a news that an event happened. Some names were changed because people wanted to make an effort to do a little less harm to marginalized people.

Folks are fine to feel differently about the reason, but there is no productive conversation to come from folks simply posting, "I agree, that's racist" or "I disagree, that isn't racist."

We have heard the feedback, but in this case we're confident in our decision. Closing up this thread now that we've clarified our position on the topic.
 
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