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Featured Ways of helping to stop the spread of misinformation, and harmful and dangerous ideas?

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by Jim, Dec 25, 2019.

  1. Jim

    Jim Nets of Wonder

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    From what I’ve seen people saying sometimes in these forums, it looks to me like they might think that they’re helping to stop the spread of misinformation, or of harmful and dangerous ideas. I’m interested in people’s ideas about how to do that.
     
    #1 Jim, Dec 25, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2019
  2. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    A problem, as I see it, is that people have differing views on just what is harmful and dangerous.
     
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  3. Laika

    Laika Well-Known Member
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    In theory, If every individual on the forum were rational and critical about sources and believed it was in their self-interest to get the best information the content they post you could have a fairly solid mechanism to counter the spread of misinformation.

    This is not how the internet works however, and Darwinian laws of "selection" apply to both the content and members of the forum. Generally the online community will self-select those members and views most "adapted" to the existing environment. I'm not saying it's "all bad" or that this is the whole story, but without RF recruiting experts in various fields amongst it's members, developing an incredible resilience to hold extremely talented and knowledgeable advocates of different beliefs and some method of verification for each post- it's really difficult to avoid the Darwinian process on any online platform. The laws of social behaviour seem to take precedence.

    RF is arguably better than other platforms in that it does cater to quite a wide spectrum of religious beliefs, but it is a "bubble" of the liberal left. It is very difficult to express conservative or authoritarian views on the forums because they are so unpopular and get "selected" out by a war of attrition. So there is a particular blind spot for that.
     
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  4. SalixIncendium

    SalixIncendium Ānanda
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    I don't think it's so much about stopping the spread of misinformation, as it is about critical thinking and stopping the believing of misinformation.

    As I see it, people need to stop believing everything they hear or read and do their own due diligence in researching to find if there is truth to what they read or hear. In my experience, people far too often take things at face value in lieu of doing any actual thinking.
     
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  5. Jim

    Jim Nets of Wonder

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    One of my ways was to start a discussion about how to avoid being fooled by what other people say. Also, recently when I saw what looked like misinformation to me, I spent some time learning more about the topic and posting about what I was learning.
     
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  6. oldbadger

    oldbadger Skanky Old Mongrel!

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    What harmful or dangerous ideas have you read on posts on RF?
     
  7. BSM1

    BSM1 What? Me worry?

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    Unfortunately, many people would rather be 'right' than to accept any idea that refutes their beliefs.
     
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  8. PureX

    PureX Veteran Member

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    The problem isn't all the lies, it's our unrestrained egos feeding on them. And consumer capitalism is not a culture inclined toward the restraint of ego. In fact, it inundates us every single day with hundreds of messages telling us that we can and should have everything we want. That our desires are never wrong and should be indulged in whenever possible. And so on and so on. We live in a culture based on greed and selfishness as virtues. And many of us believe that they are. So information has become just another consumer product to be chosen or rejected by our desire for it to be true, or untrue.

    Greed poisons everything it touches, and it has touched us all ... profoundly. The only antidote to the poison is humility, but that isn't something anyone can give to anyone else. Often, it isn't even something we can muster within ourselves, at will. It takes persistence, and practice. And no one in our culture (except perhaps for a few rare spiritual groups) is even promoting it as a solution.

    We have become an entire culture addicted to the fulfillment of it's own delusions. And as with any addiction, it is nearly impossible to break free.
     
    #8 PureX, Dec 25, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2019
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  9. Valjean

    Valjean Veteran Member
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    Burn the heretics!
     
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  10. shmogie

    shmogie Well-Known Member

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    Yes. Free speech cannot be eliminated because some people speak a falsity.

    It is the reader of the "speech" who has the responsibility of verifying it before repeating it.

    Otherwise it is garbage in, garbage out.
     
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  11. Gerry

    Gerry Well-Known Member

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    It is not possible to accomplish what you ask.
    A person who sees and understands truth can easily see what is false.
    But, unfortunately, a person who believes a falsity is unable to see the truth.
     
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  12. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    Stop doing it?
     
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  13. PureX

    PureX Veteran Member

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    79837905_3883399371685530_7272144462724202496_n.jpg
     
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  14. Sinncubus-74

    Sinncubus-74 Member

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    It's very easy for someone not informed on a subject to be fooled by misinformation when it's presented with full confidence, especially if they're presenting it as if the alternative being true is completely ridiculous and absurd. This will always be able to happen because there will always be people who don't have access to knowledge of what is true before they hear the misinformation on the subject, and a portion of those people will end up deciding that the person sounds like they know what they're talking about, or believe them because they want what they're saying to be true and like the validation.

    A good way to combat that would be informing people so more people develop B.S. sensors when coming across those ideas, though it's never going to not be a thing that happens. It gets even trickier when the misinformation is coming from an echo chamber environment because then you have people surrounded by nothing but things that agree with them and rejection and hostility if anyone ever dissents from the circlejerk.
     
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  15. sun rise

    sun rise "This is the Hour of God"
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    Adults? I'm not sure. But if school taught how to recognize logical fallacies and propaganda, it would help.
     
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  16. 1213

    1213 Well-Known Member

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    By telling what and why is harmful and/or wrong.
     
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  17. Gerry

    Gerry Well-Known Member

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    It would not work.
    Because most people know everything, and are therefore NOT seeking wisdom.
     
  18. Jim

    Jim Nets of Wonder

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    It seems to me that there is some interest here in helping to stop the spread of misunderstandings and misinformation in Internal discussions, and I think that more discussion about that might possibly help people do that better if they want to. I’d like to see more posts here about ways that people have tried, that they think might be doing some good,

    One way that I’ve tried, that I think might possibly have done some good, or at least not much harm, was doing my own research on the topic that I thought was being misrepresented, and posting about what I was learning.
     
  19. Brickjectivity

    Brickjectivity Veteran Member
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    Making friends with people can help. This won't reveal their inner thoughts, but it puts you into a position to see how they live. To stop the spread of misinformation you need people to feel free to interact, to talk and be friends.

    That's difficult when people are suspicious, such as when there is a lot of scarcity or they are concerned about arriving in the correct social groups. When people feel socially unaccepted or don't know how to behave or when social manners don't allow for talking to strangers that is going to help misinformation. People have things that we don't want to talk about. We have people that we don't want to be seen with sometimes. We have concerns about making unhelpful friendships or with unwelcome guests.

    Consider the recent steady rain of robocalls in the USA. Nobody answers their phones now. I never answer unless I know who it is. I have become unfriendly. Twenty years ago I could pick any number from a phone book and call, and someone would answer. Now no one does. That is a barrier which helps misinformation by isolating people.
     
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  20. Jim

    Jim Nets of Wonder

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    Thank you. I like that.
     
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