Then, if the probability of picking ‘fried rice’ is p, the probability of ‘fried rice’ not appearing in that 1,000 comment, 10,000 word thread is
(1-p)^10000 = 0.22
10000 log(1-p) = log(.22)
log(1-p) = log(.22)/10000
1-p = exp(log(.22)/10000)
p = 1 - exp(log(.22)/10000)
Let’s compare that with https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=nazi&year_star....
That gives us numbers close to 0.000066, but only for the mid 1940’s. Current level is around 0.000008 or 1 in 125,000. Let’s compute how many words such a long Reddit thread needs to get at that level:
(1-0.000008)^w = 0.22
w log(1-0.000008) = log(0.22)
w = log(0.22)/log(1-0.000008)
Now, let’s hope there isn’t an embarrassing error in the above computations :-)
"Give me liberty or death!"
"Go to the moon!"
When you're the one (at least in part) making the laws, it's hard to distinguish your decisions been between chaos and lawful.
Godwin's Law is largely a specific case of conversational drift (unless you start out talking about Nazis). Everyone starts out on topic, then gets more hyperbolic and distracted until you end up at some other idea, in this case Nazis.
So not only are comments in threads not independent samples, we're specifically looking at a proposition about non-independence.
In contrast, the OP just presented a bare number, implying that it was high, but without any evidence for that claim.
And yes, there's lots of room for improvement. The model is very simple, the guesses at the Reddit thread sizes are 100% guesses (how long is the average comment? What's the distribution of thread lengths? Etc), I did some serious rounding here and there, trusted Google to do the math right (it is not that hard, but IEEE may be insufficient to get results that are somewhat correct, and I don't know what Google does), etc.
As to your "I never wrote nasi goreng in 500,000 words" argument: let's take my simple/flawed model. It predicts
(1-1/125000)^500000 ~= 0.018
Funny how you're trying to avoid breaking your streak of not mentioning nazis.
The average TV vocabulary is 2,000 words. High school graduates average a 10,000 word vocabulary, college graduates 30,000, and there are over a million words in the English language. Hence having 190,000 distinct words in a reddit thread seems implausible.
The downside of this shorthand is that it dumbs down conversation. The Nazi-accuser shunts the Nazi-accused into a digestible category that needn't be historically comparable at all to be rhetorically effective, and the accused has less incentive to cordially communicate when it is clear that they are not being taken seriously, so either reasonable people leave or inflammatory folks troll, and we're all worse off.
But there are always exceptions. Nobody is wheelbarrowing carts of Deutschmarks to buy a loaf of bread. Race (and the idea of inherent superiority/inferiority) is viewed much differently, in fact until the 70s it was generally accepted that Neanderthals became whites, Homo Erectus became Asians, and so on. And if the post-Cold War era has taught us anything, there is no "End of History" where humanity converges along the One True Path.
No analogy is perfect. American slaves had little relation to Roman slaves aside from being owned people. Too much has changed since the 30s to be an exact repeat.
But that's almost never the specific argument of people who fall into the mistake of "Nazi" as analogy. In fact, many people use these overly-specific points as a fallacious straw-man rebuttal. Often, the specific, functional points are complaints of:
- stereotyping of a group
- quick and prejudicial characterization of a person as member of the group
- certain moral/ethical positions irrationally ascribed to the group
- said group being demonized with lurid, emotional language
- actions by a number of persons against a perceived member of the group
- use of exclusionary, inflammatory, and violent tactics against the same
I don't know enough of that history to know specifically what you're referring to, could you elaborate further on this point?
I guess it's progress in a way, now we only have "the biggest, baddest band of social media emotional abuse mobs." I'm not entirely sure the situation isn't merely physically safer but emotionally just as shitty. And I'm not so sure the mental states involved won't eventually cause a change in the physical safety part.
Any group that sets itself apart and has a burning collective desire to change things is waking the same psychological mechanisms. So is cheering for sports teams. We're a bit more savvy as a culture about harnessing and controlling that in the case of sports. Yet, look at some of the stupid stuff ports fans still can get up to. Just look at history, and it's quite apparent that politics awakens the exact same tendencies, but without the same cultural/societal checks. Hell, just listen to what people say and observe how they start to prejudge and target each other based on surface-level signals.
Take for example the English Society of Friends (Quakers), and their burning collective desire to stop the Slave Trade. (& for prison reform, but that was arguably self-interest because they kept ending up in them.)
So perhaps the more interesting question is still which groups and why.
Tribal-labelling is rife. Banning mention of the Nazis, as opposed to labelling (as "Nazis" or otherwise), has more effect that excluding the above list.
I'd also have doubts with regards to the terms: "many people", "Often" and "especially vulnerable". Is it possible that use of these weasel terms is in itself stereotyping?
> I'd also have doubts with regards to the terms: "many people", "Often" and "especially vulnerable". Is it possible that use of these weasel terms is in itself stereotyping?
Curious. Are you using "stereotyping" in the same category as "sin?" I'm referring to it as a particular cognitive pattern that has certain epistemological problems. People who organize themselves in groups, deliberately set apart in matters of thought and ideology are especially vulnerable to certain forms of group-think. Being emotionally invested in a particular group -- such that you think the inherent justice of its cause makes it exceptional -- is a key symptom.
The evidence against the exceptionalism of a particular group range all of history, and the structure is much the same as certain arguments against religion. Just as there have been so many different "one true" gods and so many different "one true" religions, there have been many, many exceptional "justified" causes. Often as not, they are arguably actually justified in some way as well. Often as not, these causes grow to become the next oppressors. History is full of examples.
Multi-regional descent was a theory first proposed in 1984, and of a relatively brief lifespan. Before that monogenism was the prevailing theory. Multi-regional ascent was never the pre-eminent theory.
Now we know we're all mostly descended from h.sapiens, with some minute neanderthal and denisovan admixture.
However, the split between different branches of mankind dates as back as 300 kya. (To put that in perspective, brown and polar bears diverged approximately 500 kya)
Why do you consider this unfortunate?
First of all it is not just those groups. Are you aware that the same comparison has been made by Holocaust survivors like Anne Frank's step-sister, national leaders such as the president of Mexico, and prominent conservatives like Glenn Beck? It isn't just a few socialists who are concerned.
That said, it would be unfortunate if the assertion had no basis in reality.
But does it? According to political scientists, the one trait that is most likely to predict you supporting Trump is how much you tend towards authoritarianism. This is why extremely authoritarian groups such as the KKK and neo-nazis have come out in support of Trump. Extreme authoritarianism certainly matches Hitler.
Next there is the question of truthfulness. According to Politifact, over 2/3 of Trump's public statements are lies. In fact he's more likely to issue "pants on fire" lies than to say something that is true or mostly true. (See http://www.politifact.com/personalities/donald-trump/ for a source.) Furthermore when he lies and is challenged on it, he shows no regard for the truth. Instead he repeats his lies over and over again, very forcefully. This "Big Lie" technique was a classic trademark of Hitler's.
What else is characteristic of Hitler? Extreme nationalism! Do I need to enumerate instances?
How about war mongering? Oh boy. So far Trump has promised to bomb North Korea, Syria and Isis. He has also suggested bombing Iraq and starting a trade war with Mexico to get them to pay for the wall he wants.
What about mass deportion? Hitler promised to deport the Jews, then killed them when nobody else wanted to take them. Trump promises to deport about 11 million people from the USA. How do you think that will work in practice?
You apparently think that Trump/Hitler comparisons are unfortunate. I consider it a quick way of identifying all of the characteristics that Trump has which make me afraid of the possibility of his being President.
Trump's foreign policy speech:
"I will not hesitate to deploy military force when there is no alternative. But if America fights, it must fight to win. I will never send our finest into battle unless necessary – and will only do so if we have a plan for victory ... Our friends and enemies must know that if I draw a line in the sand, I will enforce it. However, unlike other candidates for the presidency, war and aggression will not be my first instinct. You cannot have a foreign policy without diplomacy. A superpower understands that caution and restraint are signs of strength ... I was totally against the War in Iraq ... The world must know that we do not go abroad in search of enemies, that we are always happy when old enemies become friends, and when old friends become allies."
Trump and Sanders are the most isolationist, and least "war mongering" candidates.
What about mass deportion? Hitler promised to deport the Jews, then killed them when nobody else wanted to take them.
Trump promises to deport about 11 million people from the USA. How do you think that will work in practice?
Finally, Hitler was a socialist who campaigned for universal health care and unemployment insurance, increased education spending, the plunder of a traditionally wealthy class of society, and economic protectionism.
If that reminds you of anyone, please consider that drawing parallels to Nazi Germany is not always meaningful or conclusive.
More to the point, everything worrying about the tendency is worrying about BOTH authoritarians AND populists.
On Trump's foreign policy speech, note that his claim to have been publicly against the Iraq War is false. See http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2016/feb/... for verification. Furthermore everyone that I said he said he would bomb he HAS in fact said he would bomb.
That he expressed the sentiment of being a peaceful sort who does not intend to start fights, well of course he would. You can find many similar statements from dictators like Hitler. Don't look at his statements about how he wants you to think he'll act. Instead look at how quickly he suggests violence whether it is against countries (I'd bomb North Korea) or individual people (I'd like to to punch him in the face).
On mass deportation, you're right that it will be a mess. However the attempt to deport them is going to get ugly.
On Hitler's domestic policies, you are of course drawing parallels to Bernie Sanders. However the parallels continue to Trump. Trump is publicly for universal health care, unemployment insurance, and economic protectionism.
You are right that drawing parallels to Nazi Germany is not always meaningful or conclusive. BUT it is not always meaningless or irrelevant either.
It seems to me they're the ones doing a lot of the manual labor in this country. Does that account for the rental income they pay to landlords that in turn pay property taxes? How about sales taxes? Or taxes paid using fake or shared social security numbers?
I know some people that may have been illegal or visa overstays at some point who eventually became citizens. Their economic activity didn't change much and their children are heading to UC colleges. That doesn't seem like a burden to me. Interesting too that the states with the most illegal immigrants are the largest in terms of GDP.
And by the way, the majority of immigrants from south of the border are Christians just looking for work and a better life; if that's worth anything to you. It's a shame that there are people that think building a wall is going to solve their problems. It won't.
Yes. Total federal receipts, including income, social security, and employer taxes total 9 billion. State and local taxes, including property and sales taxes total 4 billion.
By the way, the implication that I am simply prejudiced against the immigrants is not well received. There is a measurable economic burden, on the order of $1,000 per American household. Please do not make such accusations.
Illegal immigrants do not qualify for the majority of social services.
"The amount that state and local governments spend on services for unauthorized immigrants represents a small percentage of the total amount spent by those governments to provide such services to residents in their jurisdictions"
So, illegal immigrants do hard manual labor for little pay and zero or close to zero benefits and you come along and try to convince people of the opposite. What do you call that if not prejudiced? Were you just misinformed?
Also, here is a map of US ancestry and I think it's relevant because it makes it clear that almost all Americans have foreign ancestry, including you.
Here is a paper published by the Congressional Budget Office:
It is a meta-analysis of this type of study, and although they do not draw a conclusion, the numbers reported are in line with the FAIR article.
Finally, I am still frustrated by the implication of your final remark. I am proud of the American immigrant heritage, and am in full support of legal immigration. Not only that, but this is exactly the type of accusation that started the debate in the parent - you are convinced that I am racist against foreigners, that I will be ashamed if you bring up my foreign ancestry, when this could not be further from the truth, and only serves to simplify my position so that it can be dismissed more easily.
Good day, sir.
Your wanton misrepresentation of facts makes for a very poor case against your prejudice and for your claim of benevolence towards immigrants.
I also think the (unwarranted) is targeted enough to break HN rules.
What does "for those who think for themselves" mean?
As it happens, they might have been close to getting it right, but they underestimated just how ruthless and exploitative Hitler would be. If it wasn't for the way the Reichstagsfire was exploited and followed up with using lies and coercion to line up the other parties save the social democrats (the communists that had not been arrested following the Reichtagsfire were prevented from taking their seats) to vote for the Enabling Act, the NSDAP would very possibly have slid back into obscurity - they never got close to a majority on their own, and their support in polls were showing signs of decline by the time the Enabling Act gave Hitler dictatorial powers.
They were kind of prophetic about that.
"After Hitler, Our Turn!"
Take his most controversial proposal. Deporting 11 million people--who don't have the right to be here in the first place--is bad policy and callous, but it's fair.
There's plenty of examples of populist nationalist leaders hurting their countries, like Berlusconi in Italy. No need to raise the false specter of concentration camps, mass murder, and totalitarianism.
I'd love to see a source/quote on that. From the news that I saw (actually digging into the details), Trump said something like "Until we have the proper means to screen Muslims for security risk, I propose we put a (temporary) halt to letting them immigrate." This was in direct response to the attacks in France.
Now, for a lot of people, that's still an offensive proposal, but it's not the same as "lets ban all Muslims (forever)".
What I think is interesting about Trump's appeal is that he doesn't filter what he says. A seasoned politician would say "I'm committed to securing this country against terrorist threats", then they put a ton of Muslims on no-fly lists and you kind of get the same thing. But it doesn't look as bad.
I get the sense a lot of people, when they listen to Trump, think "At least he doesn't offer watered down drivel like most politicians".
Second, it's patently obvious that no brilliant new techniques for screening out terrorists are magically going to materialize all of a sudden, so that the "temporary" ban would become effectively permanent.
That said, a blanket ban on Muslims entering is a brain-dead idea. But I see no good reason why the United States shouldn't consider all information when deciding how to allocate its limited resources for additional screening.
As to the second point, whether or not someone is a Muslim gives you essentially zero information as to whether or not they are a terrorist. (Trivially, it makes them more likely to be an Islamic terrorist, just as Hindus are more likely than non-Hindus to be Hindu terrorists. But since such a miniscule fraction of Muslims are terrorists, applying additional screening to Muslims would make no difference.)
For one thing, only item #1 is alarming enough. Anyone who advocates concentration camps does deserve at least a raised eyebrow. Second: logistically, how in the world do you deport 11 million people without ending up with concentration camps? If you do this at any speed faster than "glacial," you will effectively get concentration camps.
And Roosevelt and Truman had Japanese Americans thrown in concentration camps and nobody called them a "Nazi" (the latter also had 250,000 men, women and children obliterated in a combined unneeded weapon test/show of power, but I digress).
It's one thing to have such things forced upon you by circumstance. It's quite another thing to actively create the circumstance, especially when the majority of people who would wind up in them are basically ordinary people trying to get by.
And Roosevelt and Truman had Japanese Americans thrown in concentration camps and nobody called them a "Nazi"
Comparisons have been made, and I think those are useful exercises of awareness.
The fact that there's this knee-jerk reaction that effectively short circuits rational analysis of historical fact is detrimental to learning from history. Nazis, "The Greatest Generation," rank and file Japanese soldiery -- all of the above are human beings placed in particular situations. We need to learn from history to prevent such circumstances from happening again, and be able to think clearly about the same social, economic, and psychological mechanisms at play in today's world.
There are no demons in history. There are only human beings and natural circumstances. The only demons in history are those we imagine, as our minds still inhabit a "demon filled world." This is part of what we refer to as "waking up from history."
Well, the same European leaders helped create the circumstance too, by playing both sides, selling arms, and undermining the stable government that resulted in the refugee crisis in the first place (in their never ending interventionist plots for control of the area and/or cheap oil).
And, one could say refugees are just as "ordinary people trying to get by" as illegal Mexican immigrants (or even more so, since they also flee a war).
The US is guilty of much the same thing. Depending on how directly affected one is, this is taken as pretty egregious. Some are angry enough about analogous US activities, they will take lives over it.
On this, we're agreed.
To restate my point: It's one thing to have concentration camps as a necessity because of wars happening. It's another thing to bring them about in a nation at peace, when no one's life is at risk and just because the letter of the law isn't being obeyed. No sane person would displace 11 million people unless something as bad a war is happening.
Because this is a civilized justice system reacting to people whose only crime is to be residing in a place or working without proper authorization: https://si.wsj.net/public/resources/images/P1-AW395_Arzimm_G...
Don't get me wrong, I know we are not at the 'trains full people taken to be burned at the ovens' stage. But you know what Trump calls the picture above? He calls it being too soft on immigration...
He is running in a xenophobic platform, in which he tells a largely uneducated frustrated majority that all their problems derive from a few already underpriviledged minority groups in their country, and that the correct response is electing a tough leader that will make those minorities pay and restore the country to imagined past glories. How on earth is a comparison to Nazi Germany or Mussolini's Italy not an appropriate analogy here?
This implies that there is a natural progression from holding/detailing immigrants, to mass murder. Is that what you are saying? That it's a slippery slope?
Are you arguing that it's morally wrong to deport people who are in a country illegally? How else do you enforce the law? Should I just be able to waltz into any country and have the right to stay forever? And of course deporting someone requires temporary detention.
Obama has deported over a million people during his presidency. Where's the indignation for that?
>Don't get me wrong, I know we are not at the 'trains full people taken to be burned at the ovens' stage. But you know what Trump calls the picture above? He calls it being too soft on immigration...
Now you're just making this stuff up.
> bad policy and callous, but it's fair.
A lot of people disagree that it's fair, from both moral and economic standpoints.
It's often that, but it's often not only that. It's often a shorthand for extreme political ideology leading to authoritarianism. It's a shorthand for a particular affective/mental state groups of people can enter into. (1) The country that became Nazi Germany was highly educated, western, democratic, and industrialized. Germans are ordinary people, just like you and me. There is nothing peculiar or special or demonizing about them, or Russians or Chinese or Cambodians or Americans or any other group containing members who have enacted mass killings and genocide.
Our species' brain is wired to enable us gang-up together, feel solidarity, and take action against other groups. The way this happens fits certain functional objective patterns of behavior, and Nazis are a very prominent mental "attractor." Unfortunately, "Nazi" has such a strong emotional connotation, it renders rational thought about such group dynamics difficult in any public communications medium.
The Nazi-accuser shunts the Nazi-accused into a digestible category that needn't be historically comparable at all to be rhetorically effective
It's also often used to talk about attributes and events that are historically comparable to the activities of the Nazi party in its early, obscure days, before it had political power. The same group dynamics that applies to them, applies to other groups of people all throughout history. Unfortunately, the comparison it has such strong emotional connotations, the irrational feelings drown out useful rational discussion.
From what I've seen, invocations of "Godwin's Law" are often used by people who are subject to the beginnings of the same group-dynamic negative-affective death spiral -- precisely to shut down discussion of the phenomena they are subject to. This culture sorely needs a way to calmly and meaningfully discuss such group-dynamics. If society was 1/10th as savvy about group dynamics as it is savvy about the cognitive bias caused by love and sexual desire, we'd be vastly more advanced.
(1) - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11630275
I doubt Trump truly believes what he says about Mexicans and Muslims, but he sees clearly that they are effective scapegoats, and frustrated people are easy to placate with blame on someone else.
If you read his book you know that his mode of getting what he wants is to start from an almost preposterously extreme position, then negotiate. That way he can "give up" things he didn't really want to begin with.
He thinks in terms of deals. Whatever is said before the final deal is signed is just hot air. It's forgotten as soon as the ink dries.
The key point to keep in mind, is that such mental phenomena underlie all widespread forms of social injustice. I think people who sincerely believe their own rhetoric aren't just as vulnerable. They are significantly more so.
"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience." -- C. S. Lewis
Kind of like how people used to grep the Linux kernel for cuss words. Many of the matches came from drivers for Matsushita CD-ROMs, etc.
I believe that all the troubles with "harrasment" in online communities is about group dynamics. Its when one group encounters another and identifies them as other (and not similar).
Reddit also shows it too - but has a "No brigading" rule - they know that groups attack other groups and has a rule in place.
Twitter is a better example - the controls are more about the individual and not the group - about individual behaviour on the platform - but the groups are there and very strong. For example, people may identify with the pro-Smith presidential campaign and bump up against people who are pro-Baker. The intersections where groups meet occur all the time in twitter but actual explicit grouping is almost impossible.
I'm thinking of a kind of new service where people can assign themselves to groups both physical and virtual. And can assign others to groups too.
More visibility of groups should be a good thing, I think. I imagine for example that bystanders to pro presidential groups arguing would be able to label this as an inter-group interaction and be able to filter this out perhaps. Or I imagine that simply knowing that that attack from left field about some subject was due to the attackers belonging to a group and being able to understand that ideology. I'm being naive here, of course. What I want to happen is to increase the understanding of group dynamics in people to reduce undue suffering.
To see ones own groups as being flexible and to see what ideas come from ones own groups and then seeing other people in their groups and seeing the same for them.
The Peace Corps, the old Civil Conservation Corps, and the like were and are a partial expression of what he hoped for; but it would be good to see this go further. War is more harmful than beneficial on balance (read up on WWI, especially, and the way in which Western civilization was coming apart at the seams by the end); collective self-defense is of course necessary, but we should seek better ways of gaining these benefits.
(Solidarity against entropy, perhaps? That would be doubly interesting since fighting entropy is both a good thing and a lost cause...)
I'm thinking the Israelis vs the Palestinians, for example. If Israel can keep Palestinians as a perpetual enemy, given the much smaller power of the Palestinians, a limited perpetual war will keep the Israeli people ever-united without bringing them much harm. All the benefits of war without downside.
The current structure of social media seems to incentivize people separating into isolated walled camps while demonizing the other groups and figuratively throwing rocks.
That is precisely what I am saying.
It is in war that the greatest technological advances take place, and it is in solidarity that societies flourish.
It is a bad idea to put people into "war mode" when they should be rationally debating and voting.
That or 1984.
I'm sure the capacity for people to imagine ill of our fellow human beings is inexhaustible.
I'd be curious about a breakdown of usage in the instances of nazis being mentioned... I wonder if many of these usages are actually referencing the German National Socialist party of the 1930s/1940s.
Generally speaking, threads of that size imply that they are posted on a very popular public subreddit, which requires no special qualifications to post in. Invariably this leads to at least _some_ comment threads being low quality.
I would not be surprised if the majority of such highly commented posts contained isolated comment threads with racist remarks.
I don't think we can draw any conclusions from this beyond the fact that the Reddit hive mind thinks Godwin's law is hilarious and mentions Hitler at every opportunity.
"And in the end anyone who feels like that reminds me of the Nazi's"
"The Nazis did that and you see what happened to them"
"The way he makes comments it's like he's a grammar nazi"
That's not an accurate characterization.
There is an element of that, but it is frequently pushed back against.
It's mostly people who are dismayed by this recent migrant madness and the resultant massive spike in horrible crimes.
It is ostensibly also just a place for discussion of european culture but attention to the migrant madness, and seeking political solutions for it dominates the conversation because the issue is so heavily censored elsewhere on reddit.
edit: And it's highly likely that the vast majority of occurences of the string 'nazi' in that sub are in the context of satirical postings like, Oh, you think borders should be secure and rapists should be prosecuted? You must be a nazi!
I thought I'd have to look at least a little bit harder than literally the first link I clicked, but: https://www.reddit.com/r/european/comments/4htthg/til_muslim...
Some choice comments include "sieg heil, NSB (Dutch fascists) was not wrong," comments about "negroid France," calls to poison halal food, issues they find with the survival of the white race due to the "blacks" and Muslims.
It is not a place for discussion of European culture. It is a vile cesspool of racists and hate.
Also the whole 18 being a symbol of neo-nazis.
There's literally a stickied post about Holocaust denial right now.
What does 18 signify?
This isn't the first time I've asked cb18 why 18. Should I see another comment from them along similar lines, I'll ask again.
What percent of such threads contain a comment that mentions potatoes, or bismuth, or juggling?
Glad folks are putting together these datasets now, too, if informally.
If anyone did such an analysis, it would have been ketralnis.
I would have pegged the odds of sustained Nazi-free discourse on Reddit as comparable to -- say -- the odds of finding 1,000 Medium posts without the word "f*ck" or its variants in any of the headlines.
"Nazi" is just a stand-in for "the worst evil" (or sometimes just for plain evil).
It's also a major historical and political even of the 20th century, with tons of analogies and lessons to draw from.
I always found Goodwin's law (and especially the corollary, since the law is just a funny observation) BS.
Pretty much a reference point for any human being who has gotten some education.
Also a handy, lazy way to box-up anyone you disagree with or want to troll.
As generations move further and further away from WW2 people may stop relating to it though. Hard to imagine kids in 2100 using Nazi references. Might be climate destruction references instead.
Forget reddit, a quick look at American politics itself shows very liberal use of phrases like Fascist and Nazi when in reality people probably mean just evil.
What Godwin's Law refers to is this: either an ad hominem attack occurs in which some debating parties compares their opponent(s) to Nazi's, or else some other sort of non-constructive, inappropriate comparison is made between some subject and the Nazis. ("Those crazy GNU Nazis don't want anyone to get paid for programming." "I'm gonna ignore you topic Nazis and write about whatever I want.")
Simply mentioning Hitler or the Nazi party is not enough; there are valid, constructive ways to do that. For instance, a legitimate thread about WWII history will probably mention Hitler or the Nazis! Also, comparing any violently repressive regime to the Nazis is completely valid.
> Then I excluded history subreddits
Although, knowing reddit most of the comments are probably along the lines of "I did nazi that coming".
Source: I spend a lot of time on reddit
Moreover, it's not like the Nazis just went away; they continued to exist, and the ideologies that produced them not only still exist but are once again becoming a powerful political force.
So fuck yeah, everyone, talk about Nazis. It's one of the most important things you can talk about. (But read Hannah Arendt first.)
What's always rather surprised me though is that no one seems to have realized that the decades of collective shaming of Germans for having gone through the national socialist dictatorship and war, has led to a deeply lost and self-loathing society without pride, dignity, or healthy identity. The society is in rather advanced stages self-destruction and decomstruction. The question is really only whether German culture and society will at all survive it's suicidal tendencies.
In the long run, I expect Germany to survive, but I'm not making the same bet on the US. I'm planning on moving from the US to Ireland at some point; I don't really want to be here, or to make my children be here, for the chaos almost certain to ensue 40-50 years from now. (Or 10-20 years from now, if we end up with President The Donald and he keeps his campaign promises.)
As The Economist put it, America has "friends to the north and south and fish to the east and west." If anything truly threatens the US, it is ourselves. The idea that anyone could sustain supply lines to invade the States is out of their mind or has fallen asleep too many times to reruns of Red Dawn.
I think there's a Nova episode about all this.
It's almost as if some Germans are so ashamed of their national past that they would rather see nationalism eliminated entirely than to accept the messy world as it is.
Ironically, I am now realizing how much of a burden that ideology is being forced on much of Europe, not necessarily the same way that the Nazis conquered Europe, but in the same insistence that they are ultimately right.
If they're doing naive string searches, does every thread that guy shows up in get counted? What about robot_hitler, MeinFurher, and all the others?
Did anyone control for the topic very well? Many of the current news stories deal with fascism, or things people might worry to be fascism or totalitarianism or genocide.
There's a really good article on this subject that I can't seem to locate. But, if you put Reddit into the Wayback Machine, you'll see the frontpage transform over time, from something like Slashdot in 2009, to a meme image board in 2012, to a cleaned-up, marketing-friendly, image board in 2014, to the Facebook-feed-like mess that you see today.
When I first joined, the default frontpage was fine. But after time, I had to edit out default subreddits from the main feed. The final straw, in around 2013, was not being able to escape trolls and punsters, anywhere on the site.
These days, if I browse Reddit, I restrict myself to heavily moderated subs, like /r/askhistorians and /r/askscience, and subs with less than a thousand subscribers. Anywhere else on the site is like visiting the Facebook page of a 14-year-old Nazi womanizer with a Trump infatuation.
AOL and Windows 95 ruined everything!
Annoying, very annoying, and a hard problem to solve.
While I'd never use the term, it's a good reminder that what words you choose often define you.
Probably this dataset which is updated periodically
Using BigQuery to group the number of threads by subreddit:
SELECT subreddit, SUM(num_comments >= 1000) as num_comments_gte1000
GROUP BY subreddit
ORDER BY num_comments_gte1000 DESC
Therefore it is possible that there are multiple mentions per counted thread meaning that at least .00078 comments mention nazis, but in all likelihood far more comments mention nazis.
Edit: after reading the article, I don't think that this observation stands.
The vast majority of threads on Reddit have less than that. (see: http://jeroendelcour.nl/blog/Reddits-attention-inequality )