[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: Summary of the debian-devel BoF at Debconf9

Steve Langasek <vorlon@debian.org> writes:

> On Tue, Aug 18, 2009 at 03:25:30PM -0500, Manoj Srivastava wrote:
> >         These attacks on people, as opposed to discussion of what
> >  they said, is one of the major reasons discussion threads devolve
> >  into unproductive chaos. We should be managing to police discussion
> >  better, and the first step is identifying that such a post has been
> >  made.
> Given the sorts of things you've objected to as "ad hominem attacks"
> in the past, I definitely don't agree. A number of these have been
> legitimate complaints about behaviors that distract from or derail
> technical discussions.
> Sometimes heated complaints -  but no less legitimate for all that.

This points out a fallacy common to those who like to point out common
fallacies: that it's easy to assume everyone else in the discussion
wants to stay on exactly the same topic we ourselves are trying to
discuss, and that any response should be interpreted as an attempted
response to the argument.

As you say, that assumption is often unfounded :-) and so many responses
that the arguer might think are logical fallacies, are not so, because
they're pursuing an entirely different (sometimes legitimate) argument.

 \     “If you can't annoy somebody there is little point in writing.” |
  `\                                                    —Kingsley Amis |
_o__)                                                                  |
Ben Finney

Reply to: