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I must confess that I am completely mystified by what appears to me to be a hysterical response to a very little bit of bickering. ET is the most polite and sensible discussion site I know of, with pretty much universally well-reasoned arguments and calm conversation.

Is this sensitivity to inferred insults and poorly founded statements a European thing? What is it like in other European blogs? From my American viewpoint, things are almost soporifically quiet in here--even during the most "violent" of disagreements.

In comparison, think of DailyKos, which has more than its share of stupid fights. Or, let me point you to another blog that I frequent*, http://www.nasioc.com/forums. This is fundamentally a car site, sponsored by Subaru enthusiasts, but their most popular forum is the Off Topic forum (at almost the bottom of the forum front page). OT is a general discussion area, and has attracted a wide audience for some not-so-clear reason. This site experiences high volume with a claimed maximum of 9025 maximum simultaneous users a few months ago.

Here's what passes for discourse on this blog:
http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1575413

Now I'm not going to argue that ridiculously ill-informed, biased, over-the-top arguments between twenty-somethings should be the yardstick against which ET is measured, but it sure seems to me that there is a bit of oversensitivity here...

What exactly is the problem?

* Why would asdf frequent such a blog? Because it's important for old geezers to keep in touch with the thinking and viewpoints of youngsters. There are useful discussions embedded in the noise....

by asdf on Wed Feb 25th, 2009 at 10:18:15 AM EST
And to make a concrete suggestion, sometimes it troubles me that useful discussions seem to scroll out of sight too quickly. Perhaps the daily diary could be reduced in frequency a bit in order to allow longer discussions?
by asdf on Wed Feb 25th, 2009 at 10:19:22 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Do you mean the "recent diaries" box? You can change the number of displayed diaries from your user preferences.

Most economists teach a theoretical framework that has been shown to be fundamentally useless. -- James K. Galbraith
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Feb 25th, 2009 at 10:23:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No, I didn't really mean "scroll." An interesting discussion in Tuesday's open diary rarely continues into Wednesday because there are new discussions on Wednesday. I'm suggesting that maybe they could come every other day.

A problem with that would be that if you get a few hundred replies then it takes a long time for the page to load...

by asdf on Wed Feb 25th, 2009 at 09:44:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
In light of our way of value discussion, maybe the it would be better to have a longer rec list, with the rec rate being influenced by time since last comment.

(Before anyone gets their hopes up, this would probably mena rewriting some SCOOP code and I doubt there is enough interest for that. Just trying out the ideas.)

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by A swedish kind of death on Wed Feb 25th, 2009 at 10:40:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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