Psycho-Babble Administration Thread 1010543

Shown: posts 45 to 69 of 92. Go back in thread:

 

Re: This is ridiculous...yes, it is. » europerep

Posted by fayeroe on February 20, 2012, at 21:00:24

In reply to Re: This is ridiculous... » SLS, posted by europerep on February 17, 2012, at 15:59:38

europerep, I have emailed with Lou and his writing is concise and he stays on topic. I wish he would carry over his email 'style' to the forums. And I wish I knew what to do to help you. Sadly, I don't. P

 

Re: This is ridiculous...yes, it is. » fayeroe

Posted by Solstice on February 20, 2012, at 21:21:27

In reply to Re: This is ridiculous...yes, it is. » europerep, posted by fayeroe on February 20, 2012, at 21:00:24

> europerep, I have emailed with Lou and his writing is concise and he stays on topic. I wish he would carry over his email 'style' to the forums. And I wish I knew what to do to help you. Sadly, I don't. P


This is interesting. There are a fair number of community members who have said the same thing. Makes me wonder why he takes on this different persona for Babble. Perhaps it helps elicit the extra yardage he is granted in how far his behavior strays from the civility requirements?

Sounds like he is capable of a whole lot more civil and sociable behavior than what he shares on Babble. To have one persona for personal exchanges and a whole 'nother one especially for Babble implies there is a deliberate nature to his Babble persona. A choice.. rather than his Babble persona being something he can't help.

Solstice

 

site more active again » Dr. Bob

Posted by gardenergirl on February 20, 2012, at 22:36:25

In reply to Re: opportunity to support europerep, posted by Dr. Bob on February 18, 2012, at 1:06:17


> I'd also like to see this site become more active again. How do you think you might be able to help turn things around?
>
> Thanks,
>
> Bob

Methinks you are justifiably on your own with this one. Not in wanting the site to be more active again, but in actually putting forth more effort in making it so. No one's going to do it for you at this point when the site has been essentially if not actually abandoned.

gg

 

Re: This is ridiculous...yes, it is. » fayeroe

Posted by Phillipa on February 21, 2012, at 0:01:22

In reply to Re: This is ridiculous...yes, it is. » europerep, posted by fayeroe on February 20, 2012, at 21:00:24

Me also today as well. How interesting. Same impression. Phillipa

 

Re: site more active again » gardenergirl

Posted by SLS on February 21, 2012, at 7:34:06

In reply to site more active again » Dr. Bob, posted by gardenergirl on February 20, 2012, at 22:36:25

>
> > I'd also like to see this site become more active again. How do you think you might be able to help turn things around?
> >
> > Thanks,
> >
> > Bob
>
> Methinks you are justifiably on your own with this one. Not in wanting the site to be more active again, but in actually putting forth more effort in making it so. No one's going to do it for you at this point when the site has been essentially if not actually abandoned.


I prefer when Dr. Bob has a presence on his website. I don't always agree with his method of moderation, but I have always been motivated to keep posting because of the high quality of the posting community and the ease with which one can navigate posts and threads.


- Scott

 

Re: site more active again

Posted by Twinleaf on February 21, 2012, at 9:53:48

In reply to Re: site more active again » gardenergirl, posted by SLS on February 21, 2012, at 7:34:06

I agree with Scott. Even though I also disagree with some of the administrative policies, (as I guess most people know by now) I think Dr. Bob's presence is essential to the on-going vitality of the forum.

 

Re: site more active again

Posted by Solstice on February 21, 2012, at 11:53:18

In reply to Re: site more active again » gardenergirl, posted by SLS on February 21, 2012, at 7:34:06


> I prefer when Dr. Bob has a presence on his website. I don't always agree with his method of moderation, but I have always been motivated to keep posting because of the high quality of the posting community and the ease with which one can navigate posts and threads.
>
>
> - Scott


His presence can be helpful... except when he's not present and doesn't intervene when there are problems :-(

He so fervently encourages the use of notification buttons - presumably ensures we don't have to take things into our own hands - but in my single experience using them - he ignores notifications as well as emails.

Solstice

 

Re: site more active again

Posted by sigismund on February 21, 2012, at 18:15:26

In reply to Re: site more active again, posted by Twinleaf on February 21, 2012, at 9:53:48

In responding to Sostice's thread the way I transposed my feelings for my own kids to her situation. I can only assume Lou means exactly what he says about saving lives and felt something of the same. I have some sympathy with this. But there is an issue of tact and kindness as well.

 

Re: site more active again » sigismund

Posted by Solstice on February 21, 2012, at 20:05:37

In reply to Re: site more active again, posted by sigismund on February 21, 2012, at 18:15:26

> In responding to Sostice's thread the way I transposed my feelings for my own kids to her situation. I can only assume Lou means exactly what he says about saving lives and felt something of the same. I have some sympathy with this. But there is an issue of tact and kindness as well.

Thank you Sigi... Your post was a perfect example of how a person can post their concerns and talk about their reservations about medications in a constructive and civil manner. You didn't have to post the same thing 30 times, and you didn't have to use intense exaggerations to make your point. And you didn't have to hijack the thread to make your point. As a result of your civility, I felt very receptive to your input, and it will stay with me. Best of all, our relationship was not jeopardized in the process. Your post is a model for how to post opposing views without being disruptive, destructive, or hurtful.

Warmly,

Solstice

 

sleepygirl's response » SLS

Posted by sleepygirl2 on February 21, 2012, at 22:11:36

In reply to Scott's response. » Dr. Bob, posted by SLS on February 19, 2012, at 22:45:04

I am so confused about what rules apply on this site. They used to be abundant. Now, I feel like dr bob is present in a only a very minimal way, by choice, distraction or something else.
I sometimes imagine it's a decision to let posters work stuff out on their own, but then I think not.
What the hell does Dr bob want?

 

Re: sleepygirl's response » sleepygirl2

Posted by sigismund on February 21, 2012, at 22:43:53

In reply to sleepygirl's response » SLS, posted by sleepygirl2 on February 21, 2012, at 22:11:36

>I sometimes imagine it's a decision to let posters work stuff out on their own, but then I think not.

Up to a point, I think.

 

Re: site more active again

Posted by Deneb on February 22, 2012, at 1:03:40

In reply to site more active again » Dr. Bob, posted by gardenergirl on February 20, 2012, at 22:36:25

>
> > I'd also like to see this site become more active again. How do you think you might be able to help turn things around?
> >
> > Thanks,
> >
> > Bob


Dr. Bob, you should play games with us or something on social. I bet Babblers would love to play with you!

Have you noticed that the threads you post on usually get a lot of replies?


 

reminder to Mr. Hsiung-oustnding request

Posted by Lou Pilder on February 27, 2012, at 17:03:43

In reply to Lou's request--piarahanoydskiz » Dr. Bob, posted by Lou Pilder on February 18, 2012, at 10:06:16

> Mr. Hsiung,
> I am requesting that you post here clarification as to what your response in the post that referrs to someone being a paronoid schzophrenic.
> As your posted response stands at this time, there is the potential IMHHHHHO, due to your grammatical structure of your statement, to have the potential for some people to be led to think that I am diagnosed as such, which is a false statement, if that is what you are intending to lead people here to think.
> I think it would go a long way to avoid any false concepts of me here, as well as permitting a medical diagnosis to be posted about someone, if you would post an immediate clarification as to what you are or are not intending to mean by your statement concerning paronoid schzophrenics.
> Lou Pilder
>

Mr. Hsiung,
In regards to your policy here of reminding of an outstanding request and asking for your rationale and to have dialog about an action that the administation takes, the above.
Lou Pilder

 

Re: opportunity to support europerep

Posted by wearytraveler on March 29, 2012, at 3:28:41

In reply to Re: opportunity to support europerep, posted by Dr. Bob on February 18, 2012, at 1:06:17

> I'd also like to see this site become more active again. How do you think you might be able to help turn things around?
>
> Thanks,
>
> Bob


This wasn't technically addressed to me, but I'm willing to share the load when one poster is asked to express how that individual might help a pDoc realize his dream of increasing traffic on his personal Web site.

First, whatever the poster's underlying sentiment might be, I notice that the comment to which the pDoc replied was not styled as a desire to see traffic expand. Rather, it was an expression that

"> It's sad to see a forum with this much potential slowly go down, but that's what seems to be happening."

the pDoc replied

">I'd also like to see this site become more active again."

We are left to wonder what desire the pDoc references when he says he "also" wants to see traffic increase. The comment to which he responded expressed the conclusion that "this process [attract so many users whose collective potential is quite enormous] has come to an end." The comment was styled as an expression of emotion, not as an expression of desire.

That's a significant difference. It's one I would hope a clinical counselor I hired would appreciate. For example, if I said "It's sad that a marriage with this much potential has come to an end," and a counselor replied "I also would like to see your marriage survive. How do you think you might be able to help turn things around?" I would leave that office with serious concerns about the skill of the counselor, and their ability to help clients safely navigate life changes.

To ask a person how they can help something survive or recover when the person is at a stage of grieving what could be an inevitable loss caused by forces beyond their control (the actions of others) could put a grieving person in the position of believing a clinical authority has suggested they do the impossible.

For academic purposes, we can contemplate what reactions such a clinical misunderstanding could provoke. Utter despair, with all the incumbent mortal implications could be one result. Another result could be manic efforts to do the impossible, which could lead to further deterioration of personality when the impossible proves impossible.

Yet another result could be that the client believes the counselor has urged them to attempt to change the immutable force -- to persuade in this example a change of heart in the other spouse who has irrevocably terminated the relationship. Such efforts often lead to law enforcement involvement when the spouse trying to change the other overestimates a capacity and right to persuade a former partner.

Yet another implication, perhaps the most relevant to this discussion, could be a loss of faith in not only the individual counselor, but in the profession of counseling as a whole. Carried further, a person might conclude that if professional counselors aren't able to understand even the difference between grieving and actionable desire, the average peer so much more is incapable of understanding matters of the heart. Such a conclusion could point back to the mortal implication I first suggested, or to a gray area of isolation, despondence and social deterioration.

Are you listening, pDoc?

Now, stipulating that at least someone, if not the person to whom the pDoc replied wants the board to realize an increase in traffic, or even accepting that only the pDoc wants to see such an outcome, we would do well first to ask why?

1) Why do you, Robert Hsiung, want to see increased traffic at this site in particular?

Infamous reticence aside, I would appreciate an answer to that question. The expression of desire on the pDoc's part is a crack in that otherwise stoney reticence. Why let down the walls of reticence with regard to this one matter - the success of a personal research project - when otherwise reticence seems to be a defining element in the way the project is organized? (pDoc adminsters, pDoc is not clinically engaged, participants provide support and education, i.e. "best of both worlds")

Whatever reply informs question number 1, a follow-up question inquires:

2) If you had evidence, or even a suspicion that some people suffer harm from the site, either at current levels of activity or when levels of activity increase, perhaps complicating group dynamics, would you still want to see usage of the site increase?

By way of commentary in relation to question No. 2, we might like to believe 14 years of operating this site has revealed something. I suspect lessons learned on this site have been learned over and over on other social networks during that period. I suspect that other sites have matured, in the technical and business sense of the concept, to implement lessons learned during early development of extended, asynchronous electronic networks. I entertain a hypothesis that this site has not matured. It is one of very few remaining installations of Matt's BBS, which for various reasons has become a defunct software no longer supported by a developer community.

This brings up the third direct question I'll pose here:

3) What, if any, personal, business or technological barriers discourage upgrading the site to include features typical of social networks in 2012, and if none, why have you not pursued implementation of updated technology?

Perl itself is widely considered a defunct language, though it continues to find usage mostly in legacy contexts. Failure to embrace a technically vital platform limits the ability of a social network project to implement new technical solutions. Such a scenario can leave users and administrators repeating the same errors over and over, seeking social solutions for problems other social networks have readily found ways to resolve by technical means.

Just one example of the impact of failure to mature in the technological realm is frustration users realize over who sees and responds to their posts. Granular permissions quickly became a defining feature of facebook and other social networks. Users could construct small groups, appeal to large groups and on a entry-by-entry basis control who sees their posts. In most cases, users are allowed to edit, or at least remove content.

The pDoc who operates this site has taken a different tack. To paraphrase, he's concluded that permanence of performance is just the way the world is. He implies and I seem to recall at times has suggested practicing such permanence in a technical milieu can have a therapeutic value. He's certainly claimed that making examples of other's mistakes somehow helps the community learn, and followed that claim with an administrative approach that presumes every example of mistaken behavior has exemplary value while few if any are so irrelevant or potentially harmful to warrant removal. Removing posts contributed by blocked posters is the exception here, apparently practiced for practical reasons related to enforcement.

I offer that the "every mistake serves as example" model is naive of the way users and groups learn in the current technological milieu. While users absolutely learn by trail and error what is accepted in a particular technologically defined community, once the new knowledge is set, so to speak, there is little benefit found in preserving the draft process whereby the workable behavior was discovered. To the contrary, preserving the original error can invite groups to continually re-litigate the learning process rather than embrace the new-found procedure.

My first bit of advice to improve or increase use of the site would be to reconsider that suggestion that permanence offers the best clinical value. The conclusion is unsupported by any research that has been presented in reference to this project other than the scholar's fiat. In real life we can take it back. We can erase graffiti from the walls -- in fact the preferred remedial approach to urban graffiti is to quickly remove it. We don't just apologize, we repent, and where possible, we remove obstructions we've created that impair the way others might follow.

We don't just rephrase mistaken scholarly documents, we retract them. This isn't a clinical journal where the words are enshrined in hard copies preserved in the Library of Congress. On mature social networks, users can delete content, even if it potentially disrupts the flow of archived narrative. That mature approach implies that what we build today and tomorrow might be more valuable than the casual performances we otherwise preserve from yesterday.

A capacity to own one's words, even to remove them, would in my estimation improve community attachment. I would be more inclined to preserve an identity (a user name) if I could remove wayward comments, or even delete my entire opus of work. My role in the community would be defined by what I am as a living person, not what I did in the past along the way to becoming the person I am now. If my role becomes defined as a person who doesn't stand my words and often retracts them, I might be encouraged to upgrade my performance by creating words I'm not eager to retract.

Now, another suggestion I'll tender here is that the pDoc model the behavior he demands or strongly urges of his guests on this forum. He strongly encourages apologies and rephrased statements. He prods members to admit what in his eye are performance errors, which he classifies as uncivil behavior. How about a few "I got that wrong" comments from the doctor, from time to time? I can suggest one particular and obvious example.

Admit, Dr. Robert Hsiung, that you did you develop your own unique software to run this board. Contrary to that claim, printed in the nation's preeminent newspaper (NYT) the board runs on a freeware developed by a generous IT professional. The license requirement in that software demands attribution of who made it. If the NYT reporter got it wrong, correct the reporters' error in the context of this forum. Try apologizing for waiting so long to give credit where credit is due, whether the mistake resulted from a reticent approach to the interview that left the reporter guessing what you meant or whatever caused the error. Try telling us how you think the reporter got it wrong.

Finally -- though I could offer several other strategic options -- I'd consider the most important technical change that could be made would be to dump the Matt's BBS system and moving into a more mature social network platform. The average lifecycle of software these days is about seven or eight years, unless it's rewritten and repackaged for release in the current hardware and operating system contexts. (e.g. MS Word is still around, but .doc format was replaced by .docx to accommodate market demands for interoperable features of XML.) Matt's BBS is ancient and no longer maintained. Probably the most obvious choice for a replacement in a social network setting would be the widely used facebook-style social network freeware ELGG.

Engage students to implement the software if you don't have the same kind of time you had 14 years ago to develop coding skills. I'd dare say there may be qualified developers in this online community who could implement ELGG, format it to follow the look and feel of the current simple system, and merge in new user features including controlled access to who sees posts, perhaps the ability for users to delete posts and the ability to develop small groups within the overall community.

A more technologically mature platform, supported by an active community of developers, could afford other benefits. It could create potential for administrative innovations, or even an eventual transfer of ownership. Trust me on this, an old installation of Matt's BBS and a 14 year archive of posts isn't a marketable commodity, especially in the philanthropic community.

Unless you plan to run an obsolete server capable of running an obsolete programming language in turn running an obsolete software that can't run in 2020 or 2030 server environments, eventually you'll have to upgrade. Unless you plan to take some classes, learn programming skills and spend a few hundred hours doing what the NYT said you did already, you'll almost certainly have to move ahead with the loving support of the open source development community.

In summary, the board fell behind not because any one poster is such a nuisance. It fell behind because other places emerged where we could find more relevant, helpful, safe communities for support and education.

Dr. Hsuing in 1998 was ahead of the curve technologically. He was an early innovator willing to take risks, face failures (though rarely admit them in this venue) and implement new attempts to make things work. Since then, the technology world matured by leaps and bounds, but this site didn't. We have facebook, yahoo groups, google+ and a long list of less well recognized options to socially network for support and education. Get over it and get with it. That's my best advice.


 

Re: opportunity to support europerep » Dr. Bob

Posted by wearytraveler on March 29, 2012, at 3:51:08

In reply to Re: opportunity to support europerep, posted by Dr. Bob on February 18, 2012, at 1:06:17

(revised version of message posted immediately prior, updated to include »name of previous poster, correct one typo and add one line)


> I'd also like to see this site become more active again. How do you think you might be able to help turn things around?
>
> Thanks,
>
> Bob


This wasn't technically addressed to me, but I'm willing to share the load when one poster is asked to express how that individual might help a pDoc realize his dream of increasing traffic on his personal Web site.

First, whatever the poster's underlying sentiment might be, I notice that the comment to which the pDoc replied was not styled as a desire to see traffic expand. Rather, it was an expression that

"> It's sad to see a forum with this much potential slowly go down, but that's what seems to be happening."

the pDoc replied

">I'd also like to see this site become more active again."

We are left to wonder what desire the pDoc references when he says he "also" wants to see traffic increase. The comment to which he responded expressed the conclusion that "this process [attract so many users whose collective potential is quite enormous] has come to an end." The comment was styled as an expression of emotion, not as an expression of desire.

That's a significant difference. It's one I would hope a clinical counselor I hired would appreciate. For example, if I said "It's sad that a marriage with this much potential has come to an end," and a counselor replied "I also would like to see your marriage survive. How do you think you might be able to help turn things around?" I would leave that office with serious concerns about the skill of the counselor, and their ability to help clients safely navigate life changes.

To ask a person how they can help something survive or recover when the person is at a stage of grieving what could be an inevitable loss caused by forces beyond their control (the actions of others) could put a grieving person in the position of believing a clinical authority has suggested they do the impossible.

For academic purposes, we can contemplate what reactions such a clinical misunderstanding could provoke. Utter despair, with all the incumbent mortal implications could be one result. Another result could be manic efforts to do the impossible, which could lead to further deterioration of personality when the impossible proves impossible.

Yet another result could be that the client believes the counselor has urged them to attempt to change the immutable force -- to persuade in this example a change of heart in the other spouse who has irrevocably terminated the relationship. Such efforts often lead to law enforcement involvement when the spouse trying to change the other overestimates a capacity and right to persuade a former partner.

Yet another implication, perhaps the most relevant to this discussion, could be a loss of faith in not only the individual counselor, but in the profession of counseling as a whole. Carried further, a person might conclude that if professional counselors aren't able to understand even the difference between grieving and actionable desire, the average peer so much more is incapable of understanding matters of the heart. Such a conclusion could point back to the mortal implication I first suggested, or to a gray area of isolation, despondence and social deterioration.

Are you listening, pDoc?

Now, stipulating that at least someone, if not the person to whom the pDoc replied wants the board to realize an increase in traffic, or even accepting that only the pDoc wants to see such an outcome, we would do well first to ask why?

1) Why do you, Robert Hsiung, want to see increased traffic at this site in particular?

Infamous reticence aside, I would appreciate an answer to that question. The expression of desire on the pDoc's part is a crack in that otherwise stoney reticence. Why let down the walls of reticence with regard to this one matter - the success of a personal research project - when otherwise reticence seems to be a defining element in the way the project is organized? (pDoc adminsters, pDoc is not clinically engaged, participants provide support and education, i.e. "best of both worlds")

Whatever reply informs question number 1, a follow-up question inquires:

2) If you had evidence, or even a suspicion that some people suffer harm from the site, either at current levels of activity or when levels of activity increase, perhaps complicating group dynamics, would you still want to see usage of the site increase?

By way of commentary in relation to question No. 2, we might like to believe 14 years of operating this site has revealed something. I suspect lessons learned on this site have been learned over and over on other social networks during that period. I suspect that other sites have matured, in the technical and business sense of the concept, to implement lessons learned during early development of extended, asynchronous electronic networks. I entertain a hypothesis that this site has not matured. It is one of very few remaining installations of Matt's BBS, which for various reasons has become a defunct software no longer supported by a developer community.

This brings up the third direct question I'll pose here:

3) What, if any, personal, business or technological barriers discourage upgrading the site to include features typical of social networks in 2012, and if none, why have you not pursued implementation of updated technology?

Perl itself is widely considered a defunct language, though it continues to find usage mostly in legacy contexts. Failure to embrace a technically vital platform limits the ability of a social network project to implement new technical solutions. Such a scenario can leave users and administrators repeating the same errors over and over, seeking social solutions for problems other social networks have readily found ways to resolve by technical means.

Just one example of the impact of failure to mature in the technological realm is frustration users realize over who sees and responds to their posts. Granular permissions quickly became a defining feature of facebook and other social networks. Users could construct small groups, appeal to large groups and on a entry-by-entry basis control who sees their posts. In most cases, users are allowed to edit, or at least remove content.

The pDoc who operates this site has taken a different tack. To paraphrase, he's concluded that permanence of performance is just the way the world is. He implies and I seem to recall at times has suggested practicing such permanence in a technical milieu can have a therapeutic value. He's certainly claimed that making examples of other's mistakes somehow helps the community learn, and followed that claim with an administrative approach that presumes every example of mistaken behavior has exemplary value while few if any are so irrelevant or potentially harmful to warrant removal. Removing posts contributed by blocked posters is the exception here, apparently practiced for practical reasons related to enforcement.

I offer that the "every mistake serves as example" model is naive of the way users and groups learn in the current technological milieu. While users absolutely learn by trail and error what is accepted in a particular technologically defined community, once the new knowledge is set, so to speak, there is little benefit found in preserving the draft process whereby the workable behavior was discovered. To the contrary, preserving the original error can invite groups to continually re-litigate the learning process rather than embrace the new-found procedure.

In a community populated in part by members who suffer disordered frontal-striatal circuitry associated with obsessive compulsive behavior, opportunities to re-litigate errors might invite group dynamics -- defining rituals even -- related to a sense that previously completed group tasks must nonetheless be completed again and again. To let users erase or restrict access to posts containing errors might help reduce occurrence of that unproductive group ritual.

My first bit of advice to improve or increase use of the site would be to reconsider that suggestion that permanence offers the best clinical value. The conclusion is unsupported by any research that has been presented in reference to this project other than the scholar's fiat. In real life we can take it back. We can erase graffiti from the walls -- in fact the preferred remedial approach to urban graffiti is to quickly remove it. We don't just apologize, we repent, and where possible, we remove obstructions we've created that impair the way others might follow.

We don't just rephrase mistaken scholarly documents, we retract them. This isn't a clinical journal where the words are enshrined in hard copies preserved in the Library of Congress. On mature social networks, users can delete content, even if it potentially disrupts the flow of archived narrative. That mature approach implies that what we build today and tomorrow might be more valuable than the casual performances we otherwise preserve from yesterday.

A capacity to own one's words, even to remove them, would in my estimation improve community attachment. I would be more inclined to preserve an identity (a user name) if I could remove wayward comments, or even delete my entire opus of work. My role in the community would be defined by what I am as a living person, not what I did in the past along the way to becoming the person I am now. If my role becomes defined as a person who doesn't stand my words and often retracts them, I might be encouraged to upgrade my performance by creating words I'm not eager to retract.

Now, another suggestion I'll tender here is that the pDoc model the behavior he demands or strongly urges of his guests on this forum. He strongly encourages apologies and rephrased statements. He prods members to admit what in his eye are performance errors, which he classifies as uncivil behavior. How about a few "I got that wrong" comments from the doctor, from time to time? I can suggest one particular and obvious example.

Admit, Dr. Robert Hsiung, that you did not develop your own unique software to run this board. Contrary to that claim, printed in the nation's preeminent newspaper (NYT) the board runs on a freeware developed by a generous IT professional. The license requirement in that software demands attribution of who made it. If the NYT reporter got it wrong, correct the reporters' error in the context of this forum. Try apologizing for waiting so long to give credit where credit is due, whether the mistake resulted from a reticent approach to the interview that left the reporter guessing what you meant or whatever caused the error. Try telling us how you think the reporter got it wrong.

Finally -- though I could offer several other strategic options -- I'd consider the most important technical change that could be made would be to dump the Matt's BBS system and moving into a more mature social network platform. The average lifecycle of software these days is about seven or eight years, unless it's rewritten and repackaged for release in the current hardware and operating system contexts. (e.g. MS Word is still around, but .doc format was replaced by .docx to accommodate market demands for interoperable features of XML.) Matt's BBS is ancient and no longer maintained. Probably the most obvious choice for a replacement in a social network setting would be the widely used facebook-style social network freeware ELGG.

Engage students to implement the software if you don't have the same kind of time you had 14 years ago to develop coding skills. I'd dare say there may be qualified developers in this online community who could implement ELGG, format it to follow the look and feel of the current simple system, and merge in new user features including controlled access to who sees posts, perhaps the ability for users to delete posts and the ability to develop small groups within the overall community.

A more technologically mature platform, supported by an active community of developers, could afford other benefits. It could create potential for administrative innovations, or even an eventual transfer of ownership. Trust me on this, an old installation of Matt's BBS and a 14 year archive of posts isn't a marketable commodity, especially in the philanthropic community.

Unless you plan to run an obsolete server capable of running an obsolete programming language in turn running an obsolete software that can't run in 2020 or 2030 server environments, eventually you'll have to upgrade. Unless you plan to take some classes, learn programming skills and spend a few hundred hours doing what the NYT said you did already, you'll almost certainly have to move ahead with the loving support of the open source development community.

In summary, the board fell behind not because any one poster is such a nuisance. It fell behind because other places emerged where we could find more relevant, helpful, safe communities for support and education.

Dr. Hsuing in 1998 was ahead of the curve technologically. He was an early innovator willing to take risks, face failures (though rarely admit them in this venue) and implement new attempts to make things work. Since then, the technology world matured by leaps and bounds, but this site didn't. We have facebook, yahoo groups, google+ and a long list of less well recognized options to socially network for support and education. Get over it and get with it. That's my best advice.

 

Louu's request- new poster's perception » wearytraveler

Posted by Lou Pilder on March 29, 2012, at 19:05:08

In reply to Re: opportunity to support europerep » Dr. Bob, posted by wearytraveler on March 29, 2012, at 3:51:08

wearytraveler,
I am requestng that you post answers to the following. If you could, then I could have a better understanding from someone that is new here that could have looked into some of the issues concerning me here.
A. Are you aware that there are numerous outstanding requests and notifications from me to the administration here that go back days, weeks, months and years?
B. If so, do you think that by the nature of all of those requests being outstanding, it could be good for the community as a whole to have them remain outstandng? If not, why not, or if so why so?
C. Is it supportive that there are these outstanding requests and notifications?
D. Could the community revive as being more active in somme way if the requests were acted on by the administration?
E. Could there be a correlation in your opinion with the number of outstanding notifications and requests, with the cause of inactivity, or decreased traffic, as you have posted here about?
F. Do you think that by the nature of those outstanding requests from me, that I could be a victim of violence being it either physical or psychologival/emotional?
G. Do you think that by the nature of there being these outstanding requests and notifications from me here, that the administration could thearfore cause an encouraging of what you could see here written about me?
H. If so, is that a sound mental-health practice in your understanding?
K. other observations concerning this situation
Lou

 

Lou's request- new poster's perception-continued

Posted by Lou Pilder on March 29, 2012, at 21:09:14

In reply to Louu's request- new poster's perception » wearytraveler, posted by Lou Pilder on March 29, 2012, at 19:05:08

> wearytraveler,
> I am requestng that you post answers to the following. If you could, then I could have a better understanding from someone that is new here that could have looked into some of the issues concerning me here.
> A. Are you aware that there are numerous outstanding requests and notifications from me to the administration here that go back days, weeks, months and years?
> B. If so, do you think that by the nature of all of those requests being outstanding, it could be good for the community as a whole to have them remain outstandng? If not, why not, or if so why so?
> C. Is it supportive that there are these outstanding requests and notifications?
> D. Could the community revive as being more active in somme way if the requests were acted on by the administration?
> E. Could there be a correlation in your opinion with the number of outstanding notifications and requests, with the cause of inactivity, or decreased traffic, as you have posted here about?
> F. Do you think that by the nature of those outstanding requests from me, that I could be a victim of violence being it either physical or psychologival/emotional?
> G. Do you think that by the nature of there being these outstanding requests and notifications from me here, that the administration could thearfore cause an encouraging of what you could see here written about me?
> H. If so, is that a sound mental-health practice in your understanding?
> K. other observations concerning this situation
> Lou

wearytraveler,
In regards to continuing , the TOS here is that "one match could start a fire", which means that the administration does not wait to sanction a post to prevent a fire.
Now in any reply to me, could you keep that TOS in mind when you read concerning as to if that there are these nemerous outstanding request, could it then cause an encouragement as in (G) above.
Thank you in advance,
Lou

 

Re: Louu's request- new poster's perception » Lou Pilder

Posted by wearytraveler on March 30, 2012, at 0:24:21

In reply to Louu's request- new poster's perception » wearytraveler, posted by Lou Pilder on March 29, 2012, at 19:05:08

A. Yes
B. I try not to consume the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. (part 2, ditto)
C. It's supportive on your part to continue to make requests and notifications in support of the community.
D. Acting on the requests would be activity, which would of course be an increase in activity as compared to not acting on the requests.
E. There is clearly a correlation, though causation remains unclear.
F. Your anonymity probably protects you from violence by others, but I could envision a scenario where chronic attention to the concern on your part could be emotionally disruptive to you.
G. That could be one of innumerable outcomes.
H. If it causes you distress, a sound mental health practice might be discovered that could reduce your distress.
I. I appreciate your measured persistence. It's a true inspiration. Shalom.

 

Re: Lou's request- new poster's perception-continued » Lou Pilder

Posted by wearytraveler on March 30, 2012, at 0:32:21

In reply to Lou's request- new poster's perception-continued, posted by Lou Pilder on March 29, 2012, at 21:09:14

>
> wearytraveler,
> In regards to continuing , the TOS here is that "one match could start a fire", which means that the administration does not wait to sanction a post to prevent a fire.
> Now in any reply to me, could you keep that TOS in mind when you read concerning as to if that there are these nemerous outstanding request, could it then cause an encouragement as in (G) above.

If we parse the metaphor of fire in a different sense -- the sense in which fire is a source of warmth, light, security and industrial energy -- lack of fuel could extinguish a fire. Interruption of the fuel supply resulting from unresolved administrative quandaries could diminish those beneficial aspects.

 

Lou's correction-- new poster's perception- » wearytraveler

Posted by Lou Pilder on March 30, 2012, at 7:42:43

In reply to Re: Lou's request- new poster's perception-continued » Lou Pilder, posted by wearytraveler on March 30, 2012, at 0:32:21

> >
> > wearytraveler,
> > In regards to continuing , the TOS here is that "one match could start a fire", which means that the administration does not wait to sanction a post to prevent a fire.
> > Now in any reply to me, could you keep that TOS in mind when you read concerning as to if that there are these nemerous outstanding request, could it then cause an encouragement as in (G) above.
>
> If we parse the metaphor of fire in a different sense -- the sense in which fire is a source of warmth, light, security and industrial energy -- lack of fuel could extinguish a fire. Interruption of the fuel supply resulting from unresolved administrative quandaries could diminish those beneficial aspects.
>

wearytraveler,
The correction is that one match could start a {forest} fire. My apology for the {forest} not being there.
But being as that is that may be here, a forest fire could be of the nature of catastrophy, with the potential of many deaths. So the fire is in particular one of the nature to not allow here.
Now in my case with the years of outstanding requests to the administration here, there are some issues that if you could post answers here to them, I could have the opportunity to see how one that has not been a participant as a poster here, in the years back, being a new poster, views this sitution that I find myself in here.
A. Could you look at this notification here and then post answers to the follwing?
http://www.dr-bob.org/babble/admin/20110117/msgs/1002327.html
to be continued...
Lou

 

correction to correction new poster's perception-

Posted by Lou Pilder on March 30, 2012, at 7:45:52

In reply to Lou's correction-- new poster's perception- » wearytraveler, posted by Lou Pilder on March 30, 2012, at 7:42:43

> > >
> > > wearytraveler,
> > > In regards to continuing , the TOS here is that "one match could start a fire", which means that the administration does not wait to sanction a post to prevent a fire.
> > > Now in any reply to me, could you keep that TOS in mind when you read concerning as to if that there are these nemerous outstanding request, could it then cause an encouragement as in (G) above.
> >
> > If we parse the metaphor of fire in a different sense -- the sense in which fire is a source of warmth, light, security and industrial energy -- lack of fuel could extinguish a fire. Interruption of the fuel supply resulting from unresolved administrative quandaries could diminish those beneficial aspects.
> >
>
> wearytraveler,
> The correction is that one match could start a {forest} fire. My apology for the {forest} not being there.
> But being as that is that may be here, a forest fire could be of the nature of catastrophy, with the potential of many deaths. So the fire is in particular one of the nature to not allow here.
> Now in my case with the years of outstanding requests to the administration here, there are some issues that if you could post answers here to them, I could have the opportunity to see how one that has not been a participant as a poster here, in the years back, being a new poster, views this sitution that I find myself in here.
> A. Could you look at this notification here and then post answers to the follwing?
> http://www.dr-bob.org/babble/admin/20110117/msgs/1002327.html
> to be continued...
> Lou

corrected link:
Lou
http://www.dr-bob.org/babble/admin/20110117/msgs/1002372.html

 

Re: Lou's correction-- new poster's perception-

Posted by wearytraveler on March 30, 2012, at 18:29:02

In reply to Lou's correction-- new poster's perception- » wearytraveler, posted by Lou Pilder on March 30, 2012, at 7:42:43

> > >
> > > wearytraveler,
> > > In regards to continuing , the TOS here is that "one match could start a fire", which means that the administration does not wait to sanction a post to prevent a fire.
> > > Now in any reply to me, could you keep that TOS in mind when you read concerning as to if that there are these nemerous outstanding request, could it then cause an encouragement as in (G) above.
> >
> > If we parse the metaphor of fire in a different sense -- the sense in which fire is a source of warmth, light, security and industrial energy -- lack of fuel could extinguish a fire. Interruption of the fuel supply resulting from unresolved administrative quandaries could diminish those beneficial aspects.
> >
>
> wearytraveler,
> The correction is that one match could start a {forest} fire. My apology for the {forest} not being there.
> But being as that is that may be here, a forest fire could be of the nature of catastrophy, with the potential of many deaths. So the fire is in particular one of the nature to not allow here.
> Now in my case with the years of outstanding requests to the administration here, there are some issues that if you could post answers here to them, I could have the opportunity to see how one that has not been a participant as a poster here, in the years back, being a new poster, views this sitution that I find myself in here.
> A. Could you look at this notification here and then post answers to the follwing?
> http://www.dr-bob.org/babble/admin/20110117/msgs/1002327.html
> to be continued...
> Lou

Lou,

The assertion that one match could start a fire, or a forest fire, and therefore use of matches must be prohibited can be classified as a slippery slope argument, which is a form of fallacious argument.

In management of real forests, reasonable risk assessments do at times lead to restrictions on use of open flames. Whether the analogy applies here might involve the merits of any related risk assessment. That would require a determination of what is at risk.

As best I can see, the artifact at risk here is primarily Robert Hsiung's desire. His desire appears to be, in part - primarily, according to the informed consent procedure - to be to entertain the desire of his chosen guests to enjoy support and education. Who may be a guest is a factor of his discretion and authority. He appears to represent that his authority is informed in some way by his training and experience as a psychiatrist. My perception is that the study of sociology might be more relevant to some of the questions that are considered in this administrative forum.

A sociologist might be better trained to research and resolve questions related to group dynamics. Psychiatrists enjoy broad training, but I think the main aspect of a psychiatrist's training with regard to groups as it applies here has to do with group therapy. This group is only marginally a therapeutic milieu. It it more properly a support group -- not a therapeutic milieu. As such a sociologist's understanding of general group dynamics, and a technologists understanding of managing human factors of asynchronous networks might be as relevant, or more relevant, than a medial doctor's training in psychiatric ailments.

Back to the top, the artifact that could get burned if a metaphorical forest fire started here would be whatever is the owners' desire for the forum. The notion that many (or even one) death, or even morbid outcomes short of death could occur as a result of any metaphorical fire here is plausible, but a fair assessment of likelihood is probably beyond what I can offer other than in general terms.

Let's take a separate example in an effort to set a baseline for assessing what could be real-life risks of death or injury related to activity on this site. When the first L.A. police officer delivered the first blow against Rodney King, he likely didn't anticipate that more blows would follow, and that controversy over those blows would lead to hundreds of fires and numerous deaths. It's probably safe to predict the likelihood of such a result stemming from something on this site is orders of magnitude less than the likelihood the Rodney King incident would start fires and cause deaths.

Why? This is a less public venue, Robert Hsiung is not in a position of civil authority, this venue attracts only a small share of the overall interest in online discussion, and conditions that could lead to a "fire" from online discussion are somewhat neutralized by a vast context where more egregious conflicts are navigated online thereby reducing tension around any particular conflict on one site that is relatively insignificant in the context of the global Internet community. In short, most conflict management discussion here is a rhetorical exercise, practical only in so far is it informs Bob Hsiung's desire and the desires he chooses to entertain among his guests - ostensibly support and education for the largest or preferred segment of that group.

So yeh, a butterfly beating its wings in North America could lead to a hurricane in Asia, but the likelihood that we can predict which beat of what butterfly's wing is so lost in the chaos, it in no way informs a conclusion that we should outlaw butterflies in North America. Similarly, I might share a perception that administration of this site is inconsistent, arbitrary and capricious, and recognize that in some circumstances someone might be or has been harmed, even died as a result of confusion triggered by something on this site, but I can't reliably connect the cause of confusion in what you cite as a possibly arbitrary, inconsistent administrative action as the likely cause of any suffering -- other than perhaps your own, and whatever secondary suffering I can see in reaction to yours.

At this point in my reply, I need to incorporate by reference my original contribution to this thread -- the suggestion that this site did not mature technically or socially as fast as did other sites. Those other sites -- facebook, yahoo groups, google+ and even threaded discussion forums administered by clinicians or clinical institutions had resources available to invest in people with technical training and I suspect in social administration of groups. A psychiatrists' training --- and desires --- can only go so far in that direction, especially when its only a part-time, avocational, extracurricular endeavor for the lone administrator.

Early on, that administrator was ahead of the curve, but he quickly learned. Bob Hsiung's first posts on this site - as I read them, offered particular opinions about medications. We'll likely never see that again. After a couple of years, he began to publicly offer specific opinions about behavioral expectations in particular circumstances. That can only last as long as his lifespan, and I suspect it won't last that long. In recent months and years, that approach as been inconsistent at best. He might or might not admit to himself, this group or various peers what limitations he's encountered.

Most other sites have moved that sort of administrative interaction away from the surface, offering commentary in reaction to particular behavioral circumstances privately, if at all outside of systematic publication of expectations and subsequent enforcement actions. Facebook doesn't publish many of its rules or enforcement mechanisms, and administers enforcement actions in a much more private venue -- automatically, it appears in many cases -- in response to particular user actions. Mark Zukerberg rarely if ever comments on whether or not he considers a particular individual's particular action to be civil or not. Thank you for that, Mark.

I personally suspect he's up against traits of his own personality that are beyond my understanding. Aren't we all? I don't think much of his approach to administering this site in any way reflects anything close to a consensus or a majority opinion among his professional peers about management of asynchronous networked dialogue among large groups. Where will it go? About all I can say is I care just enough to check in and offer my valuable insight -- which might be worth a fortune on the open market -- at risk of feeling put down by an administrator who might conclude he feels the same about me and decides to act against my interests in exercising his own interests.

Every word I type in risks getting crosswise that way, but hey, I care enough to support you by responding and to attempt to share the benefit of what I've learned, so if what I share seems uncivil to him, maybe I'll learn more about one U of Chi associate professor's novel notion of civility, huh?

 

Lou's reply-new poster's perception-support » wearytraveler

Posted by Lou Pilder on March 30, 2012, at 20:05:05

In reply to Re: Lou's correction-- new poster's perception-, posted by wearytraveler on March 30, 2012, at 18:29:02

wearytraveler,
There are a lot of answers in your post here. Let us look at one.
[...The artifact that could get burned if a metaphorical forest fire started here would be whatever is the owners desire for the forum...death,..morbid outcomes..here is plausible...].
Now there is hhere that Mr. Hsiung states that support takes precedence. So if a statement here is not sanctioned as unaceptable , others could think that the statement is supportive.
Here is a post that I am requesting that you read and comment if you like.
Lou
To see trhis post:
A. go to the bottom of this page and type in the search box:
[faith,1003212]
if mor than one, the subject line has,{dheheudhrhog}

 

Re: Lou's reply-new poster's perception-support

Posted by wearytraveler on March 30, 2012, at 21:07:18

In reply to Lou's reply-new poster's perception-support » wearytraveler, posted by Lou Pilder on March 30, 2012, at 20:05:05

> wearytraveler,
> There are a lot of answers in your post here. Let us look at one.
> [...The artifact that could get burned if a metaphorical forest fire started here would be whatever is the owners desire for the forum...death,..morbid outcomes..here is plausible...].
> Now there is hhere that Mr. Hsiung states that support takes precedence. So if a statement here is not sanctioned as unaceptable , others could think that the statement is supportive.
> Here is a post that I am requesting that you read and comment if you like.
> Lou
> To see trhis post:
> A. go to the bottom of this page and type in the search box:
> [faith,1003212]
> if mor than one, the subject line has,{dheheudhrhog}

I can see how you get the impression things aren't administered consistently. I would prefer that more people understand how this effects you. I would also prefer that your concerns and my concerns be afforded better consideration in an administrative strategy.

 

Lou's reply-new poster's perception-good for

Posted by Lou Pilder on March 30, 2012, at 21:37:40

In reply to Re: Lou's reply-new poster's perception-support, posted by wearytraveler on March 30, 2012, at 21:07:18

> > wearytraveler,
> > There are a lot of answers in your post here. Let us look at one.
> > [...The artifact that could get burned if a metaphorical forest fire started here would be whatever is the owners desire for the forum...death,..morbid outcomes..here is plausible...].
> > Now there is hhere that Mr. Hsiung states that support takes precedence. So if a statement here is not sanctioned as unaceptable , others could think that the statement is supportive.
> > Here is a post that I am requesting that you read and comment if you like.
> > Lou
> > To see trhis post:
> > A. go to the bottom of this page and type in the search box:
> > [faith,1003212]
> > if mor than one, the subject line has,{dheheudhrhog}
>
> I can see how you get the impression things aren't administered consistently. I would prefer that more people understand how this effects you. I would also prefer that your concerns and my concerns be afforded better consideration in an administrative strategy.

wearytraveler,
You wrote,[...more people understand...].
There is more to this here. You see, there could be an indoctrination here by the nature that Mr. Hsiung and his deputy and past deputies could controll the content here by the nature that posts not sanctioned as unacceptable could thearfore be considerd to be supportive.
Then Mr. Hsiung states that he does what in his thinking will be good for the community as a whole, and to try to trust him in that.
By the two conjoined, people reading here could not only think that what is in posts that I object to are not only supportive, but will be good for the community as a whole.
There are prohibitions to me here that you may not know that prohibits me from commenting on that in the way that I would like. If you could post here from your perspective on that, I could receive insight from one that is not a regular poster here.
Lou


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[dr. bob] Dr. Bob is Robert Hsiung, MD, dr-bob@uchicago.edu

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