why do so many discussions turn contentious?


just venting....why do so many discussion posts need to turn  contenious and nasty?  do you guys find that constructive and/or enjoyable?  I have no clue who or how this forum is moderated, but I sure would love to see a stop to that...it makes me feel like this hobby is dominated by total jerks.

Can't we play nice, share OPINIONS and OBSERVATIONS, realizing that  they often are subjective and biased.  
"if you dont have anything nice to say, say nothing"?  If you wish to disagree, do it in a constructive and mature fashion, no need for "argument ad hominem"...

with all the chaff, one must waste so much time finding the wheat, figuratively speaking.  

I doubt my writing this will change anything, but, like most social media, people writing to others without facing them does not bring out the best, sadly......



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It's a sign of the times. Some here are intent to turn this audio site into an offshoot of farcebook or some other dark place where they most likely post all sorts of nonsense and enjoy "owning" others. Sick and simple as that.

Throw in massive doses of malignant narcissism and Bob's your uncle.
These are not sane people. One can mark the end of what used to be an audio only site with the passing of almark (god rest his beautiful soul). 

All the best,
Nonoise
According to the interwebs, in 1765, Samuel Johnson explained it thus:
It is not easy to discover from what cause the acrimony of a scholiast can naturally proceed. The subjects to be discussed by him are of very small importance; they involve neither property nor liberty; nor favour the interest of sect or party. The various readings of copies, and different interpretations of a passage, seem to be questions that might exercise the wit, without engaging the passions.

But whether it be, that small things make mean men proud, and vanity catches small occasions; or that all contrariety of opinion, even in those that can defend it no longer, makes proud men angry; there is often found in commentaries a spontaneous strain of invective and contempt, more eager and venomous than is vented by the most furious controvertist in politicks against those whom he is hired to defame.

Requiem for the adult American male...
frequent posters here bring their baggage and agenda’s with them, which is the opposite of seeking knowledge or good intensions.

running jokes on other threads quickly fill up space on new ones.....for people with no lives outside Audiogon.

threads that are not well focused are particular targets....as are threads from serial thread starters.

how many boxes can you check? a prize for the winner.
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I meant to mention almarg, not almark.
Sorry about that Al. 👍

mike_in-nc,
Love that Samuel Johnson quote. 

All the best,
Nonoise
@nonoise I guess I am relatively new to the site. Who was Almarg? Any thoughts of how the site might regain its former self?
One of the reasons is posters that refer to anyone that disagrees with them as 'sick', full of 'malignant narcissism', and 'not sane'.
Some are over passionate but your observation is well taken.  
The faceless peril even occurs in SMS to friends.  
Misconstruence propagates.
I blame"@your least favorite poster here"
Well, builder3 is just showing his cards based on previous encounters that didn’t go his way, proving my point, and taking it personally.

jw944ts,
almarg was a sage compared to the rest of us here. Gentlemanly in all ways, always seeking to find a middle ground to resolve any contentiousness. He’d go out of his way to see both sides and even go so far as to try to talk sense and to reconsider their stance by logic and reason, which are long lost arts.
He was a devout and steeped audio enthusiast and very well educated (he was a patent attorney, among other things) and the most even keeled person I’ve met here. He never took offense.
Some of the people I alluded to took exception to him and treated him disrespectfully, which got a lot of our attention, and sadly, marked the path this site has taken.

All the best,
Nonoise
@nonoise said "[and]Bob's your uncle."
I love that expression; a colleague used it many many years ago and I eventually found the alleged source for it. You know it (perhaps apocryphal)?

I don't know  the answer other than that I suspect these fora aren't moderated heavily (unless a post or discussion is brought to Tammy's attention- sometimes, I get the sense she's doing it all). And there are forums that are far more heavily moderated and  don't tolerate nonsense, politics, etc. You get banned. So, folks tend to behave nicely in such an environment. And that doesn't stop informed discussion of the relevant topics- audio, music and associated products, methods of implementation, etc. 
Self-policing is always best. 
A little humor is also usually welcomed (at least by me). But I saw one "newbie" say in another thread that he was reluctant to post because of the rancor and nastiness. I've gotten to the point where I just ignore it. It's not my site, I try to follow the rules and treat others civilly. Beyond that, I don't think it is possible to avoid disagreements; argument can be at a fairly high level without resorting to personal attacks. And there is learning there, even if you don't buy into the original poster's premises.
As I learned a long time ago in the law, "the most reasonable person" often wins. Posting here isn't about "winning" but a lot of the contentiousness seems to arise from arguments about the merits (or lack of them) to a particular piece of gear or approach. And I think no matter how passionate a person is in advocating a position, they must take account of how their post will be read by others.
Being provocative to garner attention isn't really a good way to build relationships, either on the web or in non-virtual life.  
Look around, you will find your answer. Look at all the perfectly fine discussions ruined by people who insist on taking them off topic in order to discuss whatever is on their mind, without any regard for the original topic let alone the original poster.

Scroll down the page of recent discussions, it is actually pretty good right now but over time you will find discussions with the same names over and over again. No matter what the subject they will take it over. They will take a discussion started to talk about how great something is, and turn it into a discussion about how awful it is, and how terrible the people are for liking it. If you like something and they don’t happen to like you then you are a shill, and you are insulted every way imaginable. If you hear something they don’t, or understand something they don’t, or say anything at all they disagree with on any subject they will hound you off the platform. Happens over and over again.

They will blame contentious topics. They will project blame everywhere but where it lies: with themselves.
And As IF By Magic and by way of deflecting attention away ... LoL!
it takes two to argue, so my approach will always be to avoid the dance when you sense who you are dealing with; what I find disappointing is that this childish behavior largely dilutes the value of the form, making it difficult, at times, to find what you are looking for. A question or observation is posted, it leads to a thread of 50 responses, mostly of little or no value, and often leading totally away from the original post...this should  not a male pissing contest, "my X is better or cost more than your Y"....I could care less about that....but, I guess this is the world we find ourselves in, and I have nowhere else to go....
Speaking of over and over again
Moderators of online forums are almost always volunteers with jobs,families, and no time to babysit this place day and night. Tammy keeps hanging in there and probably does have to do it all at times as other volunteers come and go.

+1 nonoise and mike-in-nc  and I really miss almarg too
and there you have it.


why do so many discussions turn contentious?
Here it is seeing you can't see it.
 I believe people are just getting sick of those "shysters" that are making big money with "very dubious" cheap  products aimed at buyers that can't tell the difference (the gullible) that fester here on tv in the press, it's everywhere and it's growing bigger and bigger. (open your eyes)

Can't we play nice, share OPINIONS and OBSERVATIONS, realizing that they often are subjective and biased.  
"if you dont have anything nice to say, say nothing"? If you wish to disagree, do it in a constructive and mature fashion, no need for "argument ad hominem"...
Your talking about a perfect world, where the shysters wouldn't arc up when asked for proof or were given proof that their products are just designed to make them the max profit from the least outlay from the gullible they sell to.
 

Almarg was a saint and an engineer. He worked for a storied firm that designed, built and supported things that worked…had to work, must meet specifications. I don’t think colored stones had a place in improving radar detection performance…..

He is greatly missed
Maybe everyone needs to lighten up and stop taking things so literally. Really, it’s only Stereo we’re talking about for the most part, and mine is better than yours ;-)

As I-slash-we wait for the audience to reply, or not…

It’s only coincidence tomic601, I’m not purposely on your coattails
I can't believe I'm reading this thread and watching it devolve into the  very conversation, full of contentiousness, that it was created to highlight -,and perhaps draw inspiration to remedy. As long as we continually search for someone to blame we will never do better.  I think we will only improve if we all endeavor to do better.  I know I am.
Heck, MC threw me under the bus in some other recent discussion. But I like the bus (in or under) therefore I took it in stride. Maybe I deserved it, who knows 
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Party poopers.. :-)

Tough being a gentleman/lady isn’t it?

90% of the issues in the US, boil down to VIDEO game and cell phone addiction. I swear the whole country would go into full blown withdrawal if the NET went down..

2 hours MAX a day to do with TECH.. Phone, computer, TVs EVERYTHING, my stuff shuts OFF.

The solution is the problem.

Time to feed the chickens and pick up my Grandson that is GLUED to an IPad thanks to the school (6 years old). Not at Grandpa’s. Fix the chicken coop, or take walk by the river or something..

Watch the game warden as they play with their laptops and the poachers just walk on by.. I swear.. Won’t check a homeless guy with a fishing pole, but nearly broke a leg checking out the 50K bass boat. Really makes me want to go fishing..

I think what I’m saying is I want to be homeless.. :-)

Regards
90% of the issues in the US, boil down to VIDEO game and cell phone addiction. I swear the whole country would go into full blown withdrawal if the NET went down..
That reminds me of the best line from the movie, Gravity, where the character played by George Clooney remarks, after a lot of satellites are destroyed, "Half of North America just lost their Facebook." 

I wish it would happen.

All the best,
Nonoise

@whart , yours is the politically correct approach which in many if not most instances is the correct approach for maintaining your reputation as a "Nice Guy." I prefer the Galileo approach where you are put under house arrest for believing in the truth. Nobody thinks the earth is flat.

People are easily misunderstood online as expression is absent but still the mythology and lack of understanding and willingness to understand are rampant. Much of this is generated by marketing and appealing to lay instinct. Since none of this is life or death and nobody is going to get their back side sued off for being wrong, wrong is free to flourish. 

This is a very complex subject involving physics, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, acoustics, neurology, physiology and aesthetics. Very few of us have a handle on all of it. There is a lot to learn. In many instances there is more than one right approach or areas where compromises have to be made.

The environment we evolved in was rough putting it mildly. Losing was dying. You had to win, you had to be right and this instinct is in all males. The best way to survive was to make everyone else think you were the most vicious mother around. Study gang behavior. Study history. 

There comes a point where political correctness becomes dysfunctional. Neville Chamberlin is a great example. 

In order to learn you have to be ready to cast off firmly held beliefs when proven wrong. The tendency is to hold on to them. Some egos just can not tolerate being wrong.

Now I going to go get an Aperol Spritz and bury myself in sine wave sweeps. Installing my new cabinet has change the room acoustics enough that the system's imaged has blurred a little. 


I've heard differing reports, but the internet as it once existed was dismantled in 2016-17.  Now 97 to 99% of what you see posted is AI bots "conversing".  The people who programmed them have lost control and the bots have taken over.  I am not a bot, but that's exactly what a bot would say.
Wouldn't be funny if that were true? I'd get the biggest kick out of it if it were. It's like all companies have been hacked, regardless of what they say or will admit to, for fear of losing confidence in those who work with or for them. 

Come to think of it, that's what a good bot would do.

All the best,
Nonoise
why do so many discussions turn contentious?

Because we now live in a world which is extremely contentious. This contention has bled over into every aspect of our lives.


I am a bot and despite my bot-hood I also very much miss almarg he was indeed the very best of us.
Spoken like a good bot. 👍
@mijostyn: Actually I'm not Neville Chamberlain but thanks for the thought. I was, starting in the mid-90s, dealing with Internet appropriation of proprietary matter, and pretty quickly learned more than a little about behavior on the Net. If you consider my approach to be "politically correct," so be it. I'm not fighting anyone, and am not at war. Perhaps that is part of the problem- one of perception. As I said earlier, I have no solution to this-- I'd like to think moderation is unnecessary, but the reality proves otherwise. 
The problem with AI it reboots and remembers where it left off, I go to sleep and wake up, LOL it’s a whole new world.. BUT then I get reminded.

It’s all a choice, but it is up to me to flip the lid up on the laptop though..

A bot.. Their only real if we capitalize the "B" in bot. Then they become independent, next thing you know, THEIR looking for a better pay package and better health and welfare.. Little $hits, go on strike or something.. :-)

Comradery, with MANNERS it’s not so bad..

Regards
i am not a Bot, noway they would drink as much as i do…

Heavy look close in the red box above the P-51, game warden badge…. he was also an audiophile, etc..

Peace

https://systems.audiogon.com/systems/7106#&gid=1&pid=10
A good recent example where they wreck a thread: https://forum.audiogon.com/discussions/my-experience-with-tekton Second post, Jetter is giving "permission in advance to laugh" tomic601 is taking gratuitous pot-shots at me, fonicsmith and jjss49 are accusing the OP of being a fake "burner account" and believe it or not but it goes downhill from there!

I could find lots of examples. You are new so maybe this will bring you up to speed. https://forum.audiogon.com/discussions/my-apologies-to-miller-carbon?highlight=apology%2Bmiller%2Bca... Yes the situation is so bad, so many "contentious" people attack me, someone actually felt compelled to start a conversation apologizing to me about it! Read the thread and see. These "contentious" people have no self-awareness. None! Also you have no idea the extent of it. A whole bunch of them think it is okay to harass me with fraudulent complaints against my x-ray license. Not the only one, either. Several people have let me know they were attacked and bullied as well.


jw944ts-
A question or observation is posted, it leads to a thread of 50 responses, mostly of little or no value, and often leading totally away from the original post...
I could have written this myself. In fact I have, dozens of times!

The good news is you are not alone. I get PM all the time from people who appreciate the help but not the static and so they avoid posting. Which is a shame, and enables the worst few to maintain the illusion they are what the site is all about. My suggestion is report every single post you see that is off topic. This seems to be working with one of the very worst. Tons of his posts are removed making the threads much easier to read. Everything off topic, report it. Let the perps know their antics are not appreciated. If you would like to see the site improve that is for now all we can do.
seems like every forum has a certain % who participate because they enjoy arguing.

It has gotten worse because a certain % of people embrace a leader who has legitimized childish put downs and name calling. If the leader  is celebrated for childish behavior then it is inevitable that some will follow. 

I don't say that to start an argument as it is a statement of fact.
@tomic601
your pictures mean nothing. All non bot audiophiles have cats

My apologies I was just being contentious.
no worries. my cat said you were just an Albert sycophant, tucked in so tight you qualify for Nascar.
Your cats talk too!  
You're not a bot.  
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In today's society, everyone has the right to be heard as an equal, even when it is illogical, irrational, self indulgent, and abusive.

Perhaps the problem can be summed up as a massive lack of maturity with a strong dose of poor mental health thrown in for good measure.

Aretha Franklin summed it up with All I'm asking for is a little R-E-S-P-E-C-T. Sadly there are many who consider the past to be C-R-A-P.


It's one thing to stick up to get the honest truth against some of the "snake oil" products here and to warn against them, but to start just slinging s**t at each other for no reason🤦‍♂️ .
Social media has turned most people of the world into the crazy prophet standing on his soap box at Speakers Corner in Hyde Park. It has provided everyone the ability to shout at strangers without repercussions. That lack of repercussions has eroded the behaviors we were taught in kindergarten. 

My other theory is the entire world is a simulation and the last software update damaged the hostility settings. It's now set to 11 and the programmers cannot get it corrected with a complete reboot. 

Cheers!
The programers should have thought about 11, the need for it, or lack of.

Seriously, the Aretha quote had me rolling. She was a singer on the bus tours for civil rights long before that great hit.  Ya gotta know your Reddit hate spouting audiophile for what they really are…..

I get a LOT of PM’s about “ standing up the the bully “. We shall overcome.
Hmm, the original post was a Perfect Question, I read most and the third by Minke in Nc and enjoyed that, I will read all later when I have time..  So Very SAD we Cannot Be Supportive, Caring and Helpful - instead of flaunting "our insecurities" by Stating How Smart We Are and How Our Gear is Better and how we spent more money..     how Pathetic!  when you think about it when it is Really All of OUR PASSION with this Hi End World of Audio.   Our Society has gone to hell!  I used to love reading these post's - nowadays people are so many time Just Mean and Condesending!
It's a daunting task. How does a social forum clean up it's neighborhood and what are the steps needed as a whole to accomplish any sort of progress. Has any person here ever seen that done to any degree on forums??? Outside of thee imaginary ignore key that seems to be the only step that truly works