The software that applies hashtags I find very irritating. The hashtags do not make the the words go away. We all have a pretty good idea what word was meant. So whats the point? I find this silly! Many free countries around have guarantees for free speech. The internet is a bastion of free speech.
asked Nov 12 '13 at 03:25
It's Simon's sandbox. If he wants us to be judicious with our word usage, I think we should respect that. We are all adults, aren't we? There's certainly enough words in the dictionary to express yourself adequately without resorting to expletives.
That said, I don't think filtering software is the answer. Such software has a long history of getting it wrong. I prefer that the community police itself without having to resort to nanny software. Many of us have editing privileges; expect such words to be edited out of your posts. Expect to be suspended if you can't restrain yourself.
In short, grow up.
I see that @Dollar Bill has expressed many of the basic sentiments that I was going to in my response. So I will just say the following in addition to that.
As the site owner, I have to balance my own views on how the site should be run against how the regular users of the site believe it should be run. But I also have to take into consideration the far greater number of visitors to Inward Quest who come to get answers to their spiritual questions and then either lurk for long periods before feeling confident enough to eventually participate, or simply leave quietly. If I feel that anything stands in the way of that far greater collective gaining that information/participation when they want it then I will take whatever action I believe is necessary to remedy the situation.
In my view, offensive language is an obstacle to the dissemination of that information and puts people off from participating in the site. It is also disrespectful to those who have gone to the trouble of providing that information. I do not believe that many of those who have written quality questions and answers on Inward Quest would be as willing to do so if they knew their words would be mixed in with random offensive language from a small minority of individuals.
While you may be irritated by the hashtags, I personally know many quite sensitive people who are interested in the subjects tackled on the site and who would be even more upset to view a page of spiritual information littered with obscenities. For that reason, offensive language will continue to be off-limits on Inward Quest for as long as I have a say in how this site runs.
Now, for me, it just becomes an issue of how to tackle it. I've asked the community previously to tone it down but some seem to believe that "freedom of speech" means they have a right to inflict profanity on others. So now we have stepped it up a level and are policing it at the administrator/moderator level in actually quite a laid-back fashion through the automated profanity scanner. If that approach is unpopular or unacceptable, then the next step will be to take a more manual hard-line approach and begin suspending those who are unable to control what they type. I don't think you, or others, will like this last option any better than what we are currently doing.
Finally, I should remind you that anyone can edit a comment/answer/question that has hashtags in it to change the offending word to something more neutral. If someone has left the hashtags in there, and thereby caused you irritation, then perhaps you should take it up with them and establish why they are unable or unwilling to make the alteration.
@ursixx - I am also a proponent of free speech and have curiosity why certain words have such emotional power to some. The "N" word for instance.
However, I rarely use profanity, well, what we considered profanity back in the 1950s and 1960s, though many of these words are commonplace. There is one word I almost never say, the "F" word, unless I drop something heavy on my foot!
But now I see that "F" word is the name of a popular line of clothing!!
Additional However, we are guests in the House of IQ. When we are guests in a home, we play by the Host's rules. There are certain things that, if someone did them in my home, they would be asked to leave in various degrees of "persuasion."
Same here. if the Powers That Be have certain rules, we have the freedom to either accept these rules or not. They have the freedom to allow our presence, or not.
I like your posts very much and would hate to see you leave or be ejected, but these are "freedoms" both yourself and IQ enjoy. There can be consequences to violations that is the IQ hosts freedom. You have the freedom to play by these rules, as does anyone else, and you have the freedom to find another venue where they play by rules more acceptable to you.
I can recommend one that is wide, wide open! But even there, I play by my own "Victorian" rules and I do not try to get any of them to change their language.
It is very clear in the IQ Forum rules that " what you say", as long as it can be tied to some spiritual reason, is almost universally acceptable, but HOW you say it may or may not be.
answered Nov 12 '13 at 11:02
That happened to me also. I posted and five duplicates came with it. I just deleted the duplicates.
Now to answer, IQ is a family site, I am sure we don't want IQ to become a restricted site that the search engines block that use parental blocking.
That would be a shame to deny people such good wisdom and knowledge. I agree it can go overboard hashing out words that are used to replace a swear but we have many other words to express our points so it is a minor inconvenience to keep IQ from being blocked by parental software in the search engines.
This is not the only software that does this. Here is a true but funny story about Yahoo software.
I was writing a comment about a legendary guitarist, the King and inventor of Surf Guitar. His name came out $#$@ Dale. It looked like I was swearing! LOL
I had to write that it made it look like I swore and I had to write his name is four letters, $#$@ Dale and the Deltones, and I'll let you figure out his name! LOL
I could have said the Nickname of Richard, but you won't find his looking up guitarist Richard Dale. LOL
yes I agree with everything that is said, yet I do not like those software for bad language since they seams to see some words as bad when they are not bad at all. often the software is missing discerning to what word are bad and what words are not. example: always siting on your ass, should I say: always siting on the lower part of your behind at the bottom of your back? or being someone lazy that does not do anything apart always siting down? it is common language expression and every one as that body part and every one sit on it.what is offensive about it?
answered Nov 12 '13 at 19:12
@Ursixx I don't agree, this software is not Victorian - it's obviously manufactured by the same ppl who publish Urban Dictionary.
I personally do not believe the 'f' word is necessary to write on a forum of this type & especially when the owner asked us specifically not to use profanity. ALL those hash tagged words belittle the site in my view. Reminds me of the 'book burning' they did in the southern states.
I agree for the most part with both Dollar Bill & Simon. I don't believe in censorship either; but I do believe in respect.
I think the use of profanity has increased instead of decreasing & maybe stronger action is necessary to get members to comply.
@Ursixx I'm sure the person you viewed as emotionally upset could have controlled himself had he chose to. There was no reason @Jai could not have edited her question the next day when she was not so emotional. I asked her to. Personally, I would make an example of Jai & ban her for 30 days. Then maybe members would take Simon's request seriously. Members cannot show any respect for Simon's request or show any appreciation for this awesome free site with all these valuable, life changing free tools and info.
If everyone stopped using the ' f ' word perhaps Simon would no longer have a need for the scanner.
When Simon said profanity scanner I never imagined anything like this. Last night I wrote the word 'blotches' as in blotches on ones face because I didn't think the skin condition the user was describing was acne. When the word was hashed tagged prior to posting, I changed it & then went to Urban dictionary.
Who uses Urban Dictionary as a reference dictionary? IMO, that is crazy & offensive.
I see the word which caused me great embarrassment has been whitelisted. Thank you @Simon. I honestly thought it was a glitch in the software because I used it twice & the software only hash tagged the word the first time I typed it & never the 2nd. I deleted those 2 words over and over & typed them again & again. Same thing over & over - the system only hashed out the first time I wrote the word. Then I decided to post my answer & thought the errors would self correct. After that happened once again, I didn't feel like participating any longer. I don't think there has been any other member who has posted more innocent words than me which ended up being considered profanity by the scanner no matter the context. I personally do not believe words describing sexual anatomy are profane; but I do understand why the system does it. I don't believe common words which have a relatively unknown slang definition according to Urban Dictionary should be considered profanity. I find this practice & subsequent action more offensive than real cuss words. I've never seen another member use these words in a sexually offensive manner either & if sometime in the future this happens, wouldn't it be easier to deal with it manually?
@Simon I don't know what this software costs or if you have a long term rental agreement with the company; but maybe you could look into other software which ONLY bans truly offensive words.
ETA to reply to a comment made by @ Ursixx
... comment section is a bit restrictive when you have lots to say...
I'm in complete agreement with the "idea" of "personal responsibility". It seems to be a foreign concept to some as well as open to definition or perception by others.
As for particular members NOT being subject to the 'nanny' based on length of time or karma - NO, I do NOT agree. Not a fan of elitism in any shape or form. It's how the world works & I recognize both the pros & cons.
A a successful site owner is usually a pretty sharp business person & usually caters to a particular type of clientele. It makes absolutely NO sense to punish elite members no matter if its a shopping site or a Q & A site such as IQ. A forum on a shopping site will grant special privileges to members who spend more money & ignore offensive remarks. A site like IQ relies on members to ask Q's. Even trolls are welcome if they ask popular ?'s & aren't 'mean'.
A site owner isn't likely to alienate or punish a member who makes the site more valuable due to their contributions unless they have no other choice. I believe this is the main reason most site owners resort to profanity software. The only members you can make an example of are newbies & then you're taking a gamble. Software is impersonal & treats everyone fairly regardless of Karma, length of membership or money spent if applicable. Site owners cannot risk offending the public either. IMO, Simon is being courteous & respectful of viewers who are turned off by unnecessary cursing. There is not a member here who has a limited vocabulary.
To parrot @Vesuvius "Grow up" .
Show a little respect & common courtesy questers.
I think we should all act as overseers @ursixx. What is wrong with gently reminding another user of the rules or asking another member to please calm down if necessary regardless if the profanity software is active or not?
@ursixx So you are saying members with high karma or who have been around for awhile have earned the right to use words which are not allowed? Choose your word - deserve or earn or award? Awarding members for unacceptable behavior? What type of example does that set ? Back to the haves and have nots......
This answer is marked "community wiki".
My second answer - apparently you get several answer slots on Meta. Geez, though I am part of this thread I am constantly amazed how these ideas can self perpetuate!
Drop a rock in a pond and watch the ripples!!!
Censorship does not seem to exist on IQ Meta. I typed several "bad" words and they came up with no hash marks. I edited and erased them. Personally I considered them disrespectful.
I also note that many, if not all, of our posts on IQ Prime (regular Inward Quest) immediately appear in search criteria on the Internet. Another point to consider when making posts on Inward Quest. Here on IQ Meta, they do not show up in searches.
As a WASP (White, Anglo-Saxon Protestant) I don't have a lot of energy to respond to racial slurs.
I grew up in the 1950s and 1960s. I saw racial discrimination. Bathrooms and water fountains were labeled "White" and "colored". There were a lot of inequities, but it was more peaceful. People seemed more happy with their lives and roles.
In the 1960s there was a movement to desegregate. It seemed to me that politicians, seeing a voting block of blacks, as well as some -- and I mean this in a positive way -- "do gooders" wanted to desegregate. Truthfully, I was once of these desegregationists. This was especially difficult in the deep South of the USA.
I met and slightly knew Dr Martin Luther King. I liked him, he was a great man. I cried when he was killed. BUT I think that he would be appalled by the present day actions of many blacks.
Discrimination sure exists in the deep South today! However it is much more blacks against whites. To me, senseless anger. I have been asked to join the "Black Concerned Clergy"; "The Black Chamber of Commerce" etc.
I refused and have been called "racist". I responded by saying I thought they were racist. I told them that I would not support discrimination. I would no more support the "White Concerned Clergy"; nor the "White Chamber of Commerce" if such existed, but I WOULD support the "Concerned Clergy" etc.
A black person told me that his race was being exploited. I said, "exploited"? What do you have that I could possibly want? You are, maybe, being oppressed and exploited, but you are doing it to yourselves.
The "N" word, "N-Blah" from a white person has gotten people fired, publicly censored, and even beaten badly. I saw a TV program where a white labor organizer was goaded into saying that word and he was beaten to death by a black mob. The gist of the program indicated that this was ok. For saying a WORD?
It takes education to move a person from a so-called "lowly" position, not laws. When we create laws that state a person, by color of skin, or any other common criteria, is entitled to benefits. We create anger, rage and frustration because the person did not win these benefits through responsibility and work.
People say we have to make up for 300 years of slavery and give benefits to their descendants. I could use the same specious logic to say that the Children of David (white) were held in bondage by the (black, African) Egyptians for 400 years. The blacks owe us whites for a hundred years MORE.
My point here is that when we let WORDS control us, we are not free. When we begin to treat each other -- to SEE each other as human beings, as children of Source, as brothers and sisters, the words lose their power to cause anger.
And I see @Simon Templeton as having a job here that I would not want! Decisions that try to move forward the mission of Inward Quest, and ride herd on a lot of opinions while doing so. He pays the bills, and he calls the shots.
Any questions? I am going to go find something more beautiful than this conversation and spend some time with it.
I think that my most recent antique car may be haunted, it is a 55 year-old hearse, but it is beautiful. I am going to go sit in it and contemplate mortality of the physical.