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Initially on MeatballWikiTopic, can be a temporary page.

Wiki:LetHotPagesCool. DampenEmotions. DefendAgainstPassion. TimeHealsAllWounds. Don't leap for that edit button just yet. No, still not yet. You'll know when it's time.

any suggestions?

  1. being able to use a PenName without being attacked. (copy this to UseRealNamesDiscussion when it can be teased out from other topics.)
  2. openness to other subject matter. (examples go here)

so what happened?

It's been over 10 months since anyone edited MeatballWikiTopic, which may indicate that the issues were resolved, or more likely, that they were never really addressed, and the spirit of the question simply faded away. If the latter, then the view I have as a newcomer is that Meatball topics are not overly wordy or intellectual or boring, but that contrasts, comparisons, and dissent are simply browbeaten. There is a fear we intellectuals can have in letting go, allowing that other reasonable people can reach quite different conclusions using the same resources, and so it is all-too-easy to shout them down or just ignore them as a threat to our group. What happens is they go away and find somewhere else to put their genius, which only hurts us, not them.

Meatball needs to be more open to new ideas, whether it's only regarding one issue, or a hundred of them with many new contributors. No discussion can continue forever when all the members agree and when all others have been pushed away. From my perspective, Meatball was already irrelevant to my wiki experiences before I discovered it over a year ago, but that in no way means it cannot be relevant again, or relevant in a different way, to a different crowd, for different reasons. The definition of insanity, they say, is trying the same thing over and again while expecting different results. Without becoming open to challenges and different points of view, Meatball, and other wikis, remain models of wiki "insanity". The reason I'm here is to suggest trying a different approach, in order to gain a different result. -GetProteus (18 April, 2005)

Then just do it. Post your different point of view or your challenge on one of the pages. Let's have a new idea. This is the only way to see whether your statements are a true assessment of the situation. (Obviously posting "I don't agree with your UseRealNames policy because you should be open to new ideas" is boring -- not using real names is not a new idea, it's a boring old idea that has been been discussed over an over again.) -- AlexSchroeder "interested in new ideas"

Right. Well, since you asked, you could guess my ideas would include relaxing this real name business, of course, because that one change would open things up to more diverse contributors. It would mean other points of view could be shared without those using a PenName being browbeaten immediately with the same old arguments (seems obvious, that if you've heard the same objections over and over, year after NavelGazing? year, then perhaps there's something to them). Also, opening up the topic bottlenecks would help, so that larger, wider, alternate, and otherwise different theories could be discussed besides those of one or two academics who dominate the site. Before you disagree, don't assume you've challenged me, because I have lots of ideas, and it's mostly that I'm curious if any other Meatballers, or potential Meatballers, have had lingering ideas of their own. The air in here is quite stuffy, after all, falling somewhere between a tutorial for sophomores and a social club initiation... -GetProteus

Mark, I agree with Alex. Your "you must change your rules" and "only then can I (people) offer new ideas" is not credible. There is no community without borders and one can always talk about changing them. But it is not up to a visitor or guest to do this. -- HelmutLeitner

Aren't you being a bit close-minded? -GetProteus

Hm, I'm not sure you answered my point. Here's how I see it, trying to put some structure into it:

  1. You challenged our openness to ideas (on this page)
  2. You don't like our UseRealNames policy (elsewhere)
  3. I invited you to propose new ideas in order to test your earlier statement.
  4. You didn't propose a new idea but asserted that dropping our real names policy would invite new members and thus new ideas.

To me, the two are not necessarily related. This is why I wanted to separate the two issues: Is there a new idea, and are we open to it, without having to change our real names policy?

I basically see three possible answers:

  1. You propose something new. I'm assuming that we do not or cannot do so right now, and putting the burden of proof on your shoulders, but I don't feel to bad about it because it was your challenge on this page.
  2. You claim there will be no new ideas unless we change our policy. But I must admit I find it hard to believe that new ideas for this community can only come from people that don't like our real names policy. You think that all the ideas that can be had by people linking our real names policy have been discussed, and all that is left are the ideas to be had by people that don't like our real names policy?
  3. You claim that I have artificially separated the two issues that belong together. Our very insistence on using real names shows that we're not ready to be challenged, so there is no need to actually show how we are not open to new ideas. In this case, I would have to point out to you how we many discussions we've had with TarQuin or AlixPiranha or Prince Of Stories or Name Withheld... See UseRealNamesCases. So basically this policy was discussed countless times; it's old and boring stuff. Do we have to go over all the arguments once a year, again and again, just to show how open we are to new ideas? Or do we have to change our policy every now and then to show how open we are? Or are only communities without policies truly open? I don't think you can reasonably argue for any of these statements. So then, am I putting up strawmen? I don't know. If you want to claim that we are not open to new ideas without actually putting forward a new idea, and you use our real names policy as proof, then you need to explain yourself very carefully. In this case I suggest we move this exchange away from the current page (MeatballWikiTopic) and back where it belongs -- on your name page, for example.

Oh, and I don't like snide remarks such as "The air in here is quite stuffy, after all, falling somewhere between a tutorial for sophomores and a social club initiation..."

-- AlexSchroeder

Hi again. BTW, I liked your phrase (I think it was your phrase), that wiki's don't scale. I'm now seeing that in a variety of ways across the WikiSphere?. Anyway, you folks need to have a sense of humour and read my language a bit more carefully before jerking your knees against me - and don't attack that by boo-hooing "It wasn't funny, your sense of humour needs to be the same as ours", as you should be able to figure out that futility. Otherwise, Alex, I appreciate the offer, but you do not seem to have actively comprehended what I wrote, as you're too busy trying to challenge.

You asked: "Do we have to go over all the arguments once a year, again and again, just to show how open we are to new ideas?" My answer has been to ask WHY you and others are continuing to browbeat ME with those same old arguments, if you're so sick of it, and to remind you that sometimes objectors really do know better than insiders, and if you're so open, why are you arguing?? You also seem to have missed that italicized verb I used, right there in the first full sentence, relaxing, regarding the policy. What I suggest is relaxing, not removing, the policy, because as I understand it, I can use GetProteus all I like, but in return I will be given a hard time and considered "less than". By "relax", I therefore mean YOU stop berating PenName users and LET them be equals: It is up to YOU to give up the ghost on a dead issue, not for the world to change.

Further, if you read what I wrote, I did propose an secondary idea - opening up to wider/other topics besides those represented here, since the whole "wiki community about wiki communities" thing seems to have run amiss/amok/aground. I also tried to emphasize that other people might have their own ideas, that this might be an invitation for them to turn out, and that it wasn't really my role to come up with everything right here and now - unless that is the only way to go. There are also probably ideas others might see which are unrelated to this notion of relaxing the real names policy. Lastly, this discussion belongs right here, because it is on topic, AFAICT. -GetProteus

Yes, you also claimed somebody should present new ideas. Feel free to go ahead and do that. I'm still waiting.

Since come across as rather unfriendly in your reply, I don't feel too constrained by politeness as I reply. I do hope you understand why.

You ask why I argue? As I said, I don't understand why you keep challenging. Why oh why? And why can't we keep the two isses separate? Why? Yes indeed, why why why? Why don't you answer the question? We should relax. Fine. This is why I wanted to separate the discussion into 1. ideas and 2. using real names. I felt it should be possible to discuss only part one. I guess not with you.

Also, please consider to write more clearly, since obviously I seem to have missed so much of your message -- humor, verbs, whatever. I feel like I tried hard to read, and I don't feel like you tried hard to write.

Furthermore, you feel it is your role to 1. call for new ideas (bravo!) 2. challenge our policy (huh!?) and 3. you don't feel like you have to come up with new ideas (hm...) -- what does that mean? You basically just challenge the policy. How boring. And here I was thinking that you also had new ideas to offer. And with that, I decided to move this exchange to your name page, since it has nothing to do with the MeatballWikiTopic anymore. Or are you confusing policy with topic?

-- AlexSchroeder


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