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> The way we do this, rather than ordering people to be kind or else, is try to help people learn to make their communication more kind.

This is excellent; using love and persuasion to help someone improve is so much better than by force, compulsion, and fear. How many children rebel against restrictive and domineering parents? but a child who is loved and taught, but allowed to make choices and pursue independence usually ends up much healthier and happier.

>I disagree with making "diversity" a goal. If the developers in a specific free software project do not include demographic D, I don't think that the lack of them as a problem that requires action; there is no need to scramble desperately to recruit some Ds. >Rather, the problem is that if we make demographic D feel unwelcome, we lose out on possible contributors. And very likely also others that are not in demographic D.

This dovetails in so nicely as well. You get more bees with honey than vinegar, and it is better to make a project open, kind, mentor-friendly, and productive-- which furthers the industriousness and quality of a product. Let all come who desire to come and treat them in the spirit of kindness and co-operation, but giving no preference or overt recruitment campaigns, which in themselves could end up sidelining or diverting attention from the true aims of the project.

I don't always agree with Stallman, but I think this is a magnificent and well-thought out plan and response.




Agree.

I'm fan of Nonviolent Communication a.k.a Collaborative Communication.

NVC acknowledges that moralistic judgments and demands make communication harder, not easier. Still it's important that people should be able to communicate the feelings, needs and make requests.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nonviolent_Communication


NVC is great and has improved my speaking and listening skills. However, I have to take issue with the name. Co-opting the word violence, is great marketing but dishonest.


I haven't read much about NVC, so I can't speak to how the term is used there.

But if it's anything like Crucial Conversations, they define/analyze conversational violence in a lot of detail. I thought it was a really interesting read. CC defines conversational violence as things like labeling, misrepresentation, accusations, defensiveness, getting angry, etc. I'd assume that NVC probably has a similar definition.

I thought that the use of the word 'violence' was kind of weird in that context at first, but my perception really changed as I thought about it more. The intent is to damage the other person, and to win by beating them - not really so different than physical violence.


I like those insights. The danger with labeling words as violence though is that it leads many to the conclusion that words should be policed in the way physical violence is. A critical difference between words and physical violence is that words can cause harm to a listener based on the listener's interpretation and reaction to those words. If a fist hits my jaw I can't control whether it breaks it. But I have control over how I interpret people's words, and the effect they have on me. A person's words can hurt others even when that is not the speaker's intent, and indeed, sometimes there is no way to express a certain idea that won't hurt certain people. But that should never be pretense to treat words like physical violence in the way we police the latter.

(I'm not meaning to suggest that you were advocating for that. Just that it's a risk of not clearly distinguishing between words and physical violence.)


Agreed - conversational violence and physical violence are two very different things.

If I heard somebody say 'violence', I definitely wouldn't jump to conversational violence in my head. But as far as descriptive nouns go, it's not a terrible one. Just as long as everybody understands the context.

Your note about being able to control interpretations is interesting - I haven't had great success with that myself. Like if some rando came up to me and shouted bad stuff in my face, my day would be pretty ruined. I could try to rationalize it away later, but I definitely wouldn't be unhurt in the moment. And probably the memory would affect me whether I wanted that or not. Sticks-and-stones might be one of those "in theory, theory and practice are the same" kinds of situations.


While I agree that violence in context of language is different from physical violence in that the harm can result from an interpretation of the listener's part, I also suggest that certain forms of language are equivalent to physical violence in that there is no non-harmful way to express something. For an extreme example, I do not know of a non-harmful rhetoric to advocate the genocide of an oppressed group.


It's sort of ridiculous to use the word violence in that context. Unless someone shouts into the ears of other person to induce hearing damage, it's clearly redefining the language to suit ones agenda and should be condemned. You can not be violent with words, you can use them for verbal abuse, incite violence, etc but the words themselves can't be violent.


>Unless someone shouts into the ears of other person to induce hearing damage, it's clearly redefining the language to suit ones agenda and should be condemned.

I believe you are misunderstanding the parent's comment. The authors do not equate conversational violence with physical violence. Nor are they suggesting dictionaries amend their definition of violence. They are merely categorizing types of verbal communication, and providing names for them. It's no worse than calling someone's language as "soft" or "hard" - both are ridiculous if you go with the literal definitions. I could easily go and look up theorems/terminologies in science and engineering and make the same arguments about overloading common English terms. I'd rather not attribute negative intentions to the people who coined those terms for industry use.

>it's clearly redefining the language to suit ones agenda and should be condemned.

You are attributing intention to someone else, and this is a common way conversations go downhill. The books teach you how not to do that. They also suggest that using words like "should" in an unqualified manner is likely to derail the conversation.

>You can not be violent with words, you can use them for verbal abuse, incite violence, etc but the words themselves can't be violent.

I find it amusing you insist that you cannot be violent with words, but you are OK with using the word "abuse" for words.

(Apologies for not practicing NVC skills in this post).


>Co-opting the word violence, is great marketing but dishonest.

I disagree that it is dishonest, and I doubt Marshall Rosenberg (founder of NVC) was the one to coin it. I recently read another book on communications (not associated with NVC), and it categorizes poor communications into two categories:

- Silence (withholding your information from the "pool")

- Violence (forcing your information into the "pool")

Neither is literal. Silence in this context doesn't mean not talking. One can be categorized as silent while still talking in great length. In fact, I think they categorize someone who is continually throwing insults as "silent". The person is trying hard not to talk about something and is attempting to deflect. It's more about whether his words and actions are focusing on adding or withholding. Likewise violence is more about suppressing others' perspectives so that you're sure the other side hears yours. Or talking too much, essentially trying to dump as much as possible into the pool.

Just an example that the notion of "violent" communications is not unique to NVC. It seems to be a term used often.

Personally, I do wish it wasn't called NVC - too many people think it is about serious conflict resolution, or about pacifism. It's merely a recipe for speaking.


Before you claim 'dishonesty', you might want to spend 30 seconds on reading about the origins of the term.

NVC was firmly rooted in mediating between rioting students and college administrators. The explicit goal of it was to foster non-violent desegregation. (And if you look at e.g. Kent State, that was a very necessary goal)


I agree; I've also seen the term "aggression" co-opted in a similar manner.

Both violence and aggression require intent, and a big reason such communication skills need to be taught is that so many people don't understand how they sound.

This is important because the best corrective action for unintentional harm may be different than the best corrective action for intentional harm.


I love to promote this whenever I can. This method has a fantastic reward given the time it takes to learn and practice it and has made my in-person communication a lot better whenever I use it.


I have heard about it, but always sorta wrote it of because while I can learn it, most other people wouldn't. I do wonder though, how does it work when only one side practice it? Do the user get the suckers payout?


No, I think it works pretty well if practiced uni-laterally. There are two sides to NVC: speaking and listening. Even if the other side in a conversation lacks motivation or skills to talk non-violently, NVC gives you a perspective to interpret the other's message in a NVC way, thereby making the conversation much less stressful and (in my experience) steering it into a more productive and less heated direction.

[edited to add:] With "interpreting the other's message a NVC way" I refer to e.g. seeing the anger of somebody disagreeing with you as something caused by violated expectations and needs that can be talked about, without immedeately feeling the urge to defend oneself and feeling guilty about the situation.


Not really, at least for me because even if someone else "doesn't use it," you still have the satisfaction of knowing you're following your well defined value system to the letter, and there's nothing you could have done anyway without acting outside your value system.

Dale Carnegie was writing about this stuff decades ago, so another way to look at it, if you really need a reason other than "feels good," is it gives you a tremendous advantage in social situations of all kinds. You're more likely to "get what you want" in the end, though that kind of thinking is not really the point imo.


I've used it unilaterally several times and it made things better than not using it.


>I do wonder though, how does it work when only one side practice it?

Take an extreme example: Ever witnessed someone calmly deescalate a very emotionally angry person? The person who deescalated knows tactics that work even when the other side doesn't practice it. Let's go to the other extreme: If I'm a bully, I can use verbal communication styles that work even if the other person doesn't practice it.

I've read a few communications books, including NVC. The overlap amongst them is large. I would also recommend negotiation books like Getting Past No - they are essentially books on communication with difficult people applied in a negotiation context.

All of them are about two things:

1. Making yourself a better communicator in expressing your perspective.

2. Drawing out others to express what they are thinking.

The second addresses your concern. There are approaches that make the other person feel safe (as opposed to defensive) in sharing his concerns. Once a person feels secure that you will not judge them, nor will you fight them, they will talk to you in a calmer manner. And therefore it helps to know what judgmental language sounds like and eliminate it from your rhetoric.

I once attended an NVC seminar series. It was not really worth it compared to the book, but one thing the instructor hammered into our heads was very useful: "Everything a person says or does is in service of his own needs". When you start observing the world with this in mind, it becomes fairly obvious. NVC puts heavy emphasis on this: Everything someone is saying (or not saying) is to serve some need of his. Your mission is to identify that need. If you've read negotiations books, you'll see the parallels.

So even if the other person is a horrible communicator - say he shouts and throws tantrum whenever unhappy - you'll realize that his behavior is not about you, but about him. It makes it much easier not to be put off by that behavior. If he is your boss and is muttering stuff about your incompetence, you'll know not to have identity issues about it. You'll learn to ignore all the insults, but not ignore the message. You'll learn how to engage with him to discover his need, and it usually pays off (nothing is 100% perfect).

The above paragraph is the ideal. I'm certainly not even near there. The instructor said it took about 5-7 years of trying to practice NVC before he reached that level. It's hard to change your own way of thinking and your own style of communication that you've developed over several decades. Don't expect quick results - changing your communication style is a long term plan.

I can, say, though that whenever I'm calm enough to use NVC skills, it usually works quite well. The conversational "templates" feel awkward an unnatural, but people will not notice them. What's more: It's very easy to recognize when others use such templates. And you'll notice that they've always spoken that way and you never noticed it - so it's not that unnatural. And you'll also notice others' successes in using them.

The NVC book is very prescriptive, and is light on, say, rigor (e.g. no studies cited, etc). But as I mentioned above, other books (some of which are from academics) usually have the same advice. In my experience the NVC book and Crucial Conversations book are the simplest to pick up and practice.

Now there is a whole NVC movement, which may be a little off-putting. It's become similar to Agile. Lots of chapters all over the world. Lots of focus on becoming a certified instructor. Lots of other baggage (spiritualism, socialism, activist movement). If you ignore all that and stick to it as a communication style, you'll be fine.


I'm having a real time Baader-Meinhof phenomenon here...

Had never heard about it before late last week when reading https://www.businessinsider.com/microsoft-satya-nadella-nonv....


On the relationship between persuasion and force from a psychoanalytical perspective, Zizek has a nice example showing in what ways persuasion can actually be more subversive:

>The psychoanalytic concept that designates the short-circuit between the repression and what it represses is the superego. As Lacan emphasised again and again, the essential content of the superego’s injunction is ‘Enjoy!’ A father works hard to organise a Sunday excursion, which has to be postponed again and again. When it finally takes place, he is fed up with the whole idea and shouts at his children: ‘Now you’d better enjoy it!’ The superego works in a different way from the symbolic law. The parental figure who is simply ‘repressive’ in the mode of symbolic authority tells a child: ‘You must go to grandma’s birthday party and behave nicely, even if you are bored to death – I don’t care whether you want to, just do it!’ The superego figure, in contrast, says to the child: ‘Although you know how much grandma would like to see you, you should go to her party only if you really want to – if you don’t, you should stay at home.’ The trick performed by the superego is to seem to offer the child a free choice, when, as every child knows, he is not being given any choice at all. Worse than that, he is being given an order and told to smile at the same time. Not only: ‘You must visit your grandma, whatever you feel,’ but: ‘You must visit your grandma, and you must be glad to do it!’ The superego orders you to enjoy doing what you have to do. What happens, after all, if the child takes it that he has a genuinely free choice and says ‘no’? The parent will make him feel terrible. ‘How can you say that!’ his mother will say: ‘How can you be so cruel! What did your poor grandma do to make you not want to see her?’


That's assuming the child really doesn't have a choice. First of all, if I give a child a choice then I will accept the answer they give. I will try to persuade them of why it is good to go before giving them the choice, and I would express disappointment in a mature and reasonable way if they choose something that I think is counter-productive, but I wouldn't lie to a child about their choice. Children are much smarter about that than a lot of people realize.

But in some things, they don't have a choice. They may _really_ want to run into the road; I'm not going to allow it. They probably don't really understand, and I've got a responsibility to protect as a parent or guardian. Where is the line? Not sure; I think that's part of the art form called parenting.


Your first paragraph reinforces Zizeck's point, at least the portion quoted.


Zizek is good at uttering profound-sounding things, but there's no substance. Anyone who has raised young children knows there's a high chance they'll call your bluff.


He's using an analogy to drive home a point about authority, persuasion and command. The principle might have been better applied elsewhere, but that doesn't mean there's no substance; ironically you haven't seen the substance (essence) because you became hung-up on appearance. The essence may be less profound than he lets on, if we divorce it from the psychoanalytical justification, which is the point that when someone is kind to you (or gives the appearance of being so), you will feel less inclined to disobey, but it is merely the use of the techniques of someone experienced in convincing.


Is there a Zizek-bot, like the Chompskybot? I feel like there could be...

Chompskybot -- http://rubberducky.org/cgi-bin/chomsky.pl (generates random Chompky-sounding nonsense)


It's a little silly that people seem to find Chomsky hard to understand, when he himself accuses 'theory' of being hard to understand. But it should come of no surprise that people unfamiliar with the problems and terminology of a field think it's all nonsense.

So here is a counter-question: I wonder if there's an Einstein bot that generates random Einstein-sounding nonsense.


> The parent will make him feel terrible. ‘How can you say that!’ his mother will say: ‘How can you be so cruel! What did your poor grandma do to make you not want to see her?’

Because I don't love her and don't enjoy spending time with her. Yeah, it takes some toll to say it out loud and to defend it emotionally, but excercizing freedom is never free - so I don't see how it limits your freedom in any way.


>>I disagree with making "diversity" a goal. If the developers in a specific free software project do not include demographic D, I don't think that the lack of them as a problem that requires action; there is no need to scramble desperately to recruit some Ds. >Rather, the problem is that if we make demographic D feel unwelcome, we lose out on possible contributors. And very likely also others that are not in demographic D.

Just as long as we're clear that demographic D being underrepresented relative to the general population is not evidence that we make demographic D feel unwelcome. Representation relative to the population of graduated CS majors or working programmers is better, but still not necessarily the right comparison. Representation relative to, say, the population of programmers who are experts in your implementation language, or who are users of the project, or the intersection of the above, might be better. Even then, that's not direct evidence that making D "unwelcome" is the specific reason.

Direct evidence would probably be something like, take some online exchanges and show them to a bunch of {working programmers or some other decent approximation to the population your volunteers might come from}, and ask them a few questions about how they would react to these exchanges, how much it would discourage them from volunteering, whether things like it have discouraged them from volunteering in the past, etc., and then show that demographic D has a much worse response.

By the way, has anyone done studies that showed that women respond much more negatively to harsh online exchanges than men? I have a feeling they would be called sexist if they were published, but... The closest one I can think of is Pew's online harassment study[1], which said, among other things, "Women were more likely than men to find their most recent experience with online harassment extremely or very upsetting—38% of harassed women said so of their most recent experience, compared with 17% of harassed men."

http://www.pewinternet.org/2014/10/22/online-harassment/


I wonder if the skew towards men in software starting in the 80’s corresponded with the rise of the “meritocratic” software community because that movement made people on the autism spectrum (including aspies) more comfortable in software development (judged based on their contributions alone) —- which may have helped to create the impression/generalization that people in software are “geeks” and socially challenged—-and thus others (including women, among whom autism occurs less frequently) felt less inclined toward that community.

Sorry - quickly tapped out. Hope that makes sense.


Even in the 70s when computer time was hard to come by, there was a weirdness about the enthusiasts I find very familiar: http://www.wheels.org/spacewar/stone/rolling_stone.html


Such a study would be extremely difficult to interpret, given societal pressure on men to "close off" their emotions, and societal pressure on women teaching them that they are "emotional creatures."

I guess if it was treated like an anthropological analysis of Western culture, sure, but as a psychological or physiological one dealing with actual brain chemistry, no way.


Well, at least for purposes of determining whether e.g. a culture of harsh criticism in a particular open-source project is turning away more women than men, it only matters whether it affects women more strongly than men, not why. The questions can be investigated separately.

For the latter question, cross-cultural studies would help, as would experimenting with sex hormones, looking at people of one sex with conditions that give them a hormonal balance more matching the other sex, possibly studying transgender people, etc.


> By the way, has anyone done studies that showed that women respond much more negatively to harsh online exchanges than men? I have a feeling they would be called sexist if they were published, but...

On an unrelated note, this is one of the main problems resulting from too politically-correct culture: we can't even study differences to learn about them and see how we can help each other, as even the notion that such differences may exist is unwelcome (practically speaking, in a very concrete way - in terms of grants, academic career development etc.) As if admitting that we differ in some ways was a kind of sin rather than something to acknowledge, learn from and use.


So, here's the thing. Statements like this?

Rather, the problem is that if we make demographic D feel unwelcome, we lose out on possible contributors. And very likely also others that are not in demographic D.

This is not a new statement. This is what people pushing diversity have been saying for years and years. The only ways for this to be a new and refreshing thing to you are:

1. You were not paying attention, or

2. You were getting all your information from people who were doing their best to misinform you.


It's everything surrounding this statement that is refreshing. Hearing, "Diversity is not our goal; creating an environment that welcomes diversity is," runs counter to the incessant assumptions that going out of our way to collect diversity tokens is the end all and be all to facilitating diversity.


[flagged]


You must now present, to me,

First off, thanks for that. To think that any random stranger on the internet "must" do something for you... well, that's quality humor right there.

and separately and individually to any other person who asks it of you, a minimum of five credible primary sources of people who advocate diversity and who have used exactly this phrasing

My guess is that he's capable of original thought, and this might be one of his original thoughts. Not everyone builds a facade of intelligence by regurgitating quotations from other people. Because someone else hasn't posted something on the internet doesn't mean it's not a valid thought.


It's depressingly common in threads about diversity issues that people assert a right to force their interlocutors to re-litigate the entire history of discrimination from first principles, impeccably sourced, on demand.

Ironically, the same sorts of people also throw out unsourced assertion after unsourced assertion (see the person who replied to me stating that the BBC has jobs for black people only, and who I suspect honestly and truly believes that, despite the reply to them explaining that that would be very illegal).

If it's fair for them to do that, it should be fair for me to do it, too, and for me to explicitly state that.


He won't be able to because anyone employing such a technique generally wouldn't be stupid enough to use those exact terms.

There are plenty of examples in the UK, specifically with the BBC, putting out recruitment campaigns that specifically state they only take in Black/Minority candidates. There is no reason for it other than to boost 'diversity'. The jobs are just as capable of being done by black people as any other colour.


This is highly unlikely, if only because such hiring practices would be unlawful in Britain in almost all cases.

You can use diversity as a tie-breaker, and you can actively try to persuade people from various under-represented groups to apply, but you can't specifically state that you only take Black candidates (source: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/...)

The BBC is a large centralised organisation with a hefty HR team and a lot of people who like to beat on it. They're the last people I would expect to be advertising illegal hiring practices.


>2. You were getting all your information from people who were doing their best to misinform you.

When there is moral panic, sensible people who advocated the issues long time are pushed aside and polarization happens.


The fact that companies have programs targeting recruitment specifically to minorities says otherwise.


The point of recruiting from non-traditional sources (and remember, here, in tech "non-traditional" almost means "anywhere other than exclusively the campuses of Stanford and a couple other presumed-elite universities") is to cast a wider net and try to find people who are qualified but who've been excluded due to biases in the current/historic system.

This is a perfectly fair and valid thing to do, yet it's always portrayed by opponents as "tokenism", "gotta catch 'em all", etc., and then asserted to be "diversity for diversity's sake". As I originally said, such people either have not been paying attention, or have been misinformed (and are now actively spreading misinformation).

This is why I challenged someone's "collect diversity tokens" assertion by telling them to source the phrase in actual claims made by companies. I know they won't be able to, but I know they also deeply and likely unshakably believe -- because they're been bombarded with the message in HN threads, and on other social media -- that that's the real goal.

But for you, let's just flip the script: the unspoken principle behind your comment:

The fact that companies have programs targeting recruitment specifically to minorities says otherwise.

is that companies explicitly choose their recruiting pipelines and should be held responsible for the demographics which come out of those pipelines. I would agree with that principle, but I suspect you would find extreme distaste for it if it were actually to be neutrally applied. Current recruiting pipelines produce dismal demographics precisely because of who they target, and if companies were held responsible for that they'd have to make large-scale changes.


The irony of unkind communication in a thread discussing new guidelines around kind communication is just painful.

Please don't accuse others of not paying attention. It's not nice, and it does a bad job of communicating your message.


[flagged]


> a factual statement -- people either are not paying attention, or are being misinformed -- is unkind.

That is bluntly unkind. You've taken an opinion and phrased it as "a factual statement." The "fact" you're positing is that there are two camps, those that don't understand because they are purely ignorant, and those that don't understand because they are intentionally fed false information. (How charitable!)

What was the original "factual statement" again? I don't even know, because you've told "me" that whatever my opinion is, if it disagrees with yours, then I'm in one of two camps and they're both wrong.

(NB: you didn't tell me anything, I'm just trying to engage you in this thought exercise that you seem to want to have.)


> my retort to this would be that you are obviously attempting to censor my free speech

Do you not realise that free speech doesn't apply to whatever random online forum you decided to sign up too?


The idea that "free speech" == "only protection from state censorship" is an americanism, and not some universally accepted dictum.

Historically it wasn't even always the state that suppressed free speech - it was often some church, mobs of "concerned citizens", the private interests owning the press, the profits of cinema studios concerned with citizens boycotting lewd movies and thus self-submitting to things like the Hays code (which was self-imposed by the "motion picture industry", and so on.

If "free speech" is good, there's nothing wrong for asking for less or no censorship in the media, in social media, in the workplace, in arts, and other places...


It’s impossible to come up with a doctrine of free speech that allows for person A to say what they want, but does not allow person B to express outrage or opprobrium about what person A just said. It’s also well within person B’s rights of free association to not interact with person A because of what person A said.

Of course a literal mob threatening violence is absolutely suppression of speech, very very few people want that. But people saying that they view you negatively because of what you’ve said is not a mob, and is in fact free speech in its own right.


>It’s impossible to come up with a doctrine of free speech that allows for person A to say what they want, but does not allow person B to express outrage or opprobrium about what person A just said.

Nobody asked for that. B should be able to complain about what A said all they want. They just shouldn't be able to censor A.

>It’s also well within person B’s rights of free association to not interact with person A because of what person A said.

It is, though it can be a way to create extremist groups that don't interact and exchange ideas between them, and thus an echo bubble.

>Of course a literal mob threatening violence is absolutely suppression of speech, very very few people want that. But people saying that they view you negatively because of what you’ve said is not a mob, and is in fact free speech in its own right.

People saying you should "kill yourself" or "be fired" from your unrelated job because of what you said on your personal social media account, and managing to do it is ok?

Or maybe it's just OK today, where it's just "bigots" that get this treatment?

Because one can easily imagine a past America with social media (or a future America if the conservative tides change), where someone saying they're pro this or that progressive cause gets you mob-fired. In fact it's not hard to imagine, as it happened, even without social media: word of mouth in smaller communities, print media, etc were enough.

Is that the precedence people doing that want to set, or are they just enjoy their temporary power are a lynch mob, like those that used to haze them back in the day?


It’s not about precedence or what’s “OK”, it’s about how free speech works in general. You still cannot possibly create a system where person A can say something that’s against the prevailing norms, and persons B through Z can’t say “you should be fired” and consider it to be “free speech”. Regulating speech based on content or the number of people saying it is not free speech.

(The few exceptions, such as directly encouraging a crime are very narrow. For example, expressing bigoted opinions is legal, saying “there’s a <X>, get them!” Is not, because it’s a direct and specific incitement to commit a crime).

Those that bully others and encourage suicide should receive social opprobrium for being toxic. They are typically well within their right to say such odious things, but we are also within our right to call them out and shun them from polite society. Freedom of speech doesn’t just apply to nice speech.

You can suggest that such pressures are mercurial, and that businesses shouldn’t cave to the crowd demands. In many cases you would be right, but in general if your attitude is that humans should ignore social pressure when you don’t like it, you will be continuously disappointed. If you attempt to regulate that, then you no longer have freedom of speech, period.

I find your comparison of social disapproval via opt-in social media to a lynch mob that killed minorities in cold blood to be completely gross. Comparing the two overstates the former and trivializes the latter in a way that I don’t think people should find comfortable.

There’s no need to run counter factuals about social media powered past, plenty of people were actually killed for expressing progressive sentiments long before the era of social media or even mass media. A couple hundred people having it out over 280 characters is fine, and comparing that to lynch mobs is both historically illiterate and sensationalist.


I realize it perfectly well, but you chose to quote only half of what I said and then try to push an interpretation based on that. By the GNU Kind Communication Guidelines, this is an unkind thing to do!


We don't need this kind of accusatory commentary on HN, I don't think.


On the contrary, I think more often than not, people here need reminders like this. Nothing they said was wrong.


What reminder? The OP threw out an awful no true Scotsman argument.

Pro diversity programs in all of the big tech companies that specifically target diversity quotas are a blatant example.


Pro diversity programs in all of the big tech companies that specifically target diversity quotas are a blatant example.

Quote primary sources from "all of the big tech companies" to back this assertion. Real sources, which really say it, too, not "well I interpret this as quotas" or anything of that sort.


I agree. Check out the voting patterns in this thread, or the way this thread has not been flagged the every other similar thread has.


What I like about this kind communication guideline is that it really makes you need to restricted your last two bullets.

There are certainly other ways and the two you point out are pretty harsh on stallman saying either he’s uninformed through stupidity or through biased sources.

So it makes for an awkward and,likely, nonproductive conversation because it has a basic tenant that stallman is stupid because pet doesn’t believe how you do.

It’s logically not sound and emotionally charged up for a battle.


> You get more bees with honey than vinegar

What does this mean? Don't bees make honey? Why would you try attracting bees with honey or vinegar in the first place?


It's usually said with "flies" rather than "bees".

You catch more flies with honey than vinegar is a well-known English proverb. The literal meaning being that you have flies in your home, you will have better success catching them with honey than with vinegar. The broader meaning is that in life, you will have more success if you go about things with sweetness than with acidity. (Though I've heard that--despite the proverb--vinegar actually does work better than honey at catching fruit flies.)


Not sure why I was downvoted, but thank you.




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