What makes good discussion

What makes good discussion
Hypothesis
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Posted Jan 9, 2008 - 2:26 PM:
Subject: What makes good discussion
From reading a few topics here which end up with more than 1 page worth of replies I noticed that what really makes threads interesting is going off topic and the same old straw man. I might be wrong but that's how it goes sometimes.

It seems to me that people will go to great lengths to take up a position about something and feel it's their duty to protect it. Is this out of arrogance ?

What's the point of having a discussion then if we know that no matter how rational our arguments are they will be turned to straw ? The reason sometimes is boredom, and of course I'm generalising as there are some genuine people here who don't do this.

This is as wrong I think as offering your own personal wisdom on things.

What are your thoughts ?
Kreius
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Posted Jan 9, 2008 - 9:19 PM:

When I don't peruse the topics here, I go over to the myspace forums (more specifically the religion and philosophy which we call r&popolis, although I go to other ones too) and I see a similar trend, albeit on a more primitive level because the mod doesn't really care too much about spelling or relevance. The most common topic is always going to be about Evolution, the most common threads of this nature are 'Evolution is just a THEORY' or 'Great quotes from the Origin of Species'. Now, these are obviously wrong, several of the 'great quotes' in the origin of species are taken from irrelevant texts, such as one where Darwin states that his proposition requires massive factual evidence which lacks is about the length of an ourang-outang's arm. Still, most of those who know anything about Darwinian Evolution are attracted there because they either wish to try to enlighten the original poster in a desperate attempt to stop these threads or just because they want to practice their sardonic speech.
I think this example may be one explanation of why we're going to be attracted to topics which go off-topic. Mixed in with the joys of socializing.
Inkstain
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Posted Jan 9, 2008 - 10:35 PM:

What makes a good discussion is when 2 sides are able to debate in a rational and reasonable discussion, providing evidence and theory, and both sides are able to be swayed to a certain point of middle understanding.

What makes a fun discussion is when 2 sides are able to debate in a rational and reasonable discussion, providing evidence and theory, and each side thinks the other is out of their mind.
Paul
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Posted Jan 10, 2008 - 1:50 AM:

Beyond about 5, the quality of any discussion is inversely proportional to the number of replies.
hyena in petticoat
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Posted Jan 10, 2008 - 8:58 PM:

Personally, I think what makes a good discussion, aside from a fresh topic or a new angle on an old topic, are participants of the discussion who are capable of defending their stand. It might have to do something with mere stubbornness yes, but I think discussing with a person who is stubborn and smart is far enjoyable than just discussing with just a stubborn person. A good debate reflects how positions/ stand have been well thought of, comprehensive understanding of the subject and excellent articulation of ideas and thoughts.

On not-so-very serious note, it's fun to discuss with someone when someone wants to go ego tripping. grin
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