There have been some developments that have finally precipitated my decision to start 1 experimental forum and 2 experimental creationist blogs. The most important catalyst for my decision being I got invitation to make presentations to university students for which they can get homework credits for attending, and I needed an internet presence to supplement what they learn in the presentations. The decision was also was peripherally connected to some of the reader complaints about creationism being overemphasized at UD and some desire to have an ARN/ISCID-like discussion forum for conversations that may require weeks to conduct.
UD and EvolutionNews (ENV) blogs are what I consider advocacy blogs for ID. People come to these blogs for a variety of reasons. The reasons may be:
1. to get News and read articles
2. to meet like minded people and discuss topics and fellowship over shared interests and get a sense of community and support
3. to get into arguments and shouting matches, some seem to have a great love of confrontation like a great football game
But the UD and ENV blogs are heavily ID and some of our readership are just itching to talk creationism. Further, there have been some lamentation from those who were part of the ISCID/ARN forums where discussion on a focused topic could last for years (yes years) where participants may drop in every few months or so to see if some development had arisen in the literature regarding a particular discussion. Sometimes the data flow is very very slow. Further, a new need in my personal circle has arisen, a need to provide a website for university students that I occasionally encounter who want to learn more about the topics, will visit a few times, and never return.
Shouting matches in the comment section are not inviting to readership. If people come to UD to read the comments and hear insights of others, spam and shouting are a major turn off. The challenge is moderating the comments, and a former moderator, DaveScot Springer used to spend 4 hours a day moderating UD. That’s a workload.
The new experimental forum and 2 new experimental blogs are meant to address a niche and readership mostly separate from UD an ENV. So here are the descriptions of the 2 blogs and 1 forum.
UNIVERSITY (COMMENTS OFF) RESOURCES BLOG/ONLINE BOOK
I’m starting an COMMENTS OFF blog for university students interested in creation science and ID. If they read it, get convinced of the arguments made, and never return, I’d be very delighted. The sort of article that would be great for that venue would be: Relevance of Coin analogies to homochirality.
I’m happy to cross-post such articles here at UD and the new blog, but the new blog will be a nice repository of a limited number of articles (say 30-100) that students can refer to. Because there is so much free-of-charge quality material out there like Don Johnson’s Programming of Life, this blog will be a channel for such embedded video presentations.
Further, since UD is an ID blog, and many of the university students I encounter are creationists, the RESOURCES blog will have substantially more creationist (both pro-and con) material discussed. Some of the creationists stuff that I really want to talk about, I’m going to write there and not here at UD since UD is an ID blog.
UD and the internet was a great opportunity to develop, refine these materials, and several of the OPs I’ve posted at UD were to help me edit and vet the material! So, in many cases, these will be 2nd and 3rd editions of articles originally posted at UD, and improved thanks to comments and criticisms that I’ve gotten through the net.
ISCID/ARN-LIKE FORUM BUT WITH IMPROVED RULES
For those wanting discussion about creationist and ID stuff in a forum format, I will be creating a prototype forum for that. Some may complain a forum is slow and boring, but for the purposes of research and development of ID and creation science, I like slow and boring. What is research and development in ID and creation science? Pooling of relevant articles and data points, development of experiments and observations and field work, etc. Frankly, I’m tired of debating Darwinists. It was fun, but time to move on and talk about more specific nerdy topics.
The new ISCID/ARN-like forum will have author moderated threads. That is authors moderate the discussion as they please. They have the right to dis-invite a participant to a conversation since a participant can start their own thread. What I find is Darwinists don’t really want to dialogue, they want to heckle and prevent meaningful communication.
The author moderated discussions takes the burden off me from having to police discussions. If the software can help me ban IP’s, then I think the forum will succeed, and if it the troll problem gets bad we’ll go into invitation only mode. So now participants can start discussion yourself and you can decide the rules of how your discussion will be conducted. When someone misbehaves he’s banned from the thread, but can start his own thread in the forum and invite his guests. The idea is each thread is like a house, and the author of a thread owns and runs the house at his discretion.
This idea was the old “ARN RULE 9” that I developed and sold to the ARN management, and it got rid of trolls fast! With Rule 9 I’d say, “Troll, you’re disinvited from this discussion, so start your own ‘I hate Sal Thread’. You can provide a link to that new thread here, but after that, you’re required to leave this discussion.” Thus they never were prevented from saying what they wanted in the forum, they just were prevented from heckling and making productive threads unreadable.
So, unlike UD and ENV, highly technical and scholarly discussions which can go on for months or years can be hosted and nicely archived. A good example of a discussion that needs to happen are amendments to how to use the explanatory filter.
You can see where I was going with some of these ideas with an article I wrote last December: Fundamental Law of Intelligent Design. This is the way I try to teach ID, which is not exactly like other ID literature, but one I found the most pedagogically effective.
Discussions like these need a far slower pace for meaningful ideas to emerge and become well-developed. One topic I’d love to explore is ID detection in certain Bachus-Naur form, Quine computing systems, steganography, etc. blogs formats (any blog format) where topics are scrolled off into oblivion, are not conducive to this because blogs are ideal for news and drama, not protracted scholarly discussions!
LIARS FOR DARWIN BLOG
Sure to be my most controversial offering is a blog specifically for shouting matches. This will be basically a place I cut and paste articles that I write elsewhere, but then invite anyone to comment with almost no restriction.
The Liars for Darwin blog is an advocacy blog (sort of), but it’s really an un-moderated cut and paste site where I cut and paste my articles (or anyone else willing to have their writing publicly martyred) into an un-moderated blog.
Here is the mission statement of the Liars for Darwin blog, and you can see, this blog isn’t meant to be a serious blog, but rather a blog to allow Darwinists to vent and say what’s on their mind. Hence, they can’t say I suppress their criticism, I welcome it in any form, I just want to compartmentalize it an prevent them from using heckling tactics to inhibit communication.
Because I have a “COMMENTS OFF BLOG” I’m giving Darwinists a “COMMENTS ON BLOG”. If people ask me “are there criticisms of your ideas” I’ll point them to the Liars for Darwin blog. Here is a tentative mission statement for the Liars for Darwin blog:
The Liars for Darwin blog is for defenders of “science” and “reason” who are tired of getting banned and moderated from creationist websites.
Here at Liars for Darwin, creationists can post and advocate their ideas in the OP articles, but unlike other blogs, defenders of “science” 🙄 are free to speak their mind in defense of evolutionism and materialism in the comment section.
Although truth in the comment section is welcome, also welcome are lies, falsehoods, obfuscation, spam and swarm tactics, misrepresentations, misinterpretations, non-sequiturs, equivocations, ad hominems, red herrings, off-topics derailments, trash talking and outright lies, etc.
Sockpuppets and Trolls are especially welcome to participate.
Here is the placemarker for the Liar’s for Darwin blog:
Now some will say, they might want a new blog like UD that is moderated, has fewer news articles, can have discussions, and has more creationism. That is not my mission, and those aren’t headaches I want to burden myself with. David Coppedge website is a little like that, but after getting swarmed with trolls he started preventing comments too.
David invited me to write for that site, but well, I can’t compete with his tremendous wit and writing style. I’d probably dilute the quality of what is written by participating.
My goal is to hit niche participants for a different readership than those that visit UD, with maybe the exception of those wanting to participate in boring forums like the one I’m developing. Most UD readers may not like the shouting match forum either, and most UD readers might read the 30-100 articles in the comments off blog and be done with the resources blog.
Thus, nothing that I’m doing will replace UD for UD’s most important readership. I make this announcement to UD regulars looking for a forum for more scholarly and protracted discussions and who miss ARN/ISCID and those who would like a scholarly creationist forum as well. For me, I like talking about things like Quasars and redshifts and electromagnetism, but they are a little outside the mission of UD. This new forum will be a place to host such explorations. When I get the other two websites up, I’ll announce the URLs.