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Old 10-25-2010, 02:51 AM   #1
Alexander Turcic
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Politics and religion are off-limits, unless you opt in

I'll get right to the point: Politics and religion are two subjects that are no fit for our general forums.

We've often asked ourselves what to do with off-topic threads that deal with politics or religion. These frequently lead to heated debates, and detract from the lively, fun-loving atmosphere that MobileRead is intended to have.

Sometimes we'd like to think along the lines of Jack Bauer when he says "We don't have time for that!" We've been "soft-pedaling" on enforcing the MR guidelines somewhat, most noticeable in the main forums as well as in the lounge, to allow discussions that include a religious or political subject. With mixed results. We've received negative feedback from you who would rather not see such content regardless of the tenor of the discussion. After all, MobileRead is about e-books, right? Yet others have expressed a great interest in these discussions, as long as they remain civil and intellectually gratifying.

So what to do? Thanks to our collective hive mind we found a solution that should accommodate as many of your views as possible. From now on:

Discussions related to politics or religion are available on an opt-in and opt-out basis only (opt-out by default).

Which implies:

In our general forums we're reverting to our previous standards and restrict political and religious topics that have absolutely no connection to our site's theme (e-books, reading, publishing, etc.).

For anyone who is genuinely interested in discussing politics and religion, we've set in place a special usergroup ('Hardened Debaters').

Joining this usergroup means you wish to access our new Politics and Religion forum section and that you agree that you can handle the discussions that take place there in a mature and respectable manner. It goes without saying that our guidelines in terms of discussing things politely still apply.

So, if you're for these types of discussions, go to Group Memberships in your control panel and click on "Join Group" to join the "Hardened Debaters" group. That's all there's to it, you should now be able to see the Politics and Religion discussion forum on the main forum index. Leave the group at any time if you want to opt out again.

Thanks everyone for your feedback, your patience, and all the fun you're bringing into this community and into our lives.

Cheers,
Alexander / moderation team
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Old 10-25-2010, 02:52 AM   #2
Alexander Turcic
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Active discussions moved to the opt-in section:

  • Is Atheism under attack in the US?
  • Is Christianity under attack in the US?
  • Is Islam under attack in the USA?
  • Was Jesus a 2nd Century Creation, or a Historical Figure?
  • Now this is a bit too much if you ask me.

Last edited by Alexander Turcic; 10-25-2010 at 03:10 AM.
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Old 10-25-2010, 02:58 AM   #3
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You guys are awesome!!!

Great idea!!!
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Old 10-25-2010, 03:06 AM   #4
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It is like you heard my prayers Andrew.


Amen
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Old 10-25-2010, 03:30 AM   #5
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Good idea. Thanks to Alex and the green team!
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Old 10-25-2010, 03:44 AM   #6
David Munch
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Thanks... Religious and political content always wreaks havoc on online forums.. And MobileRead has the kindest userbase on the web - I don't want to see that go away!
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Old 10-25-2010, 03:55 AM   #7
FlorenceArt
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Seems like a good solution. I'm debating whether to join the group, I get tired of beating the same poor old tired donkey, but there has been some interesting debate along the way. I hope this will satisfy everyone.
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Old 10-25-2010, 04:12 AM   #8
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Seems indeed like a pretty good solution to the problem.
I might join from time to time when I'm in a suitable mood.
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Old 10-25-2010, 04:14 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by FlorenceArt View Post
Seems like a good solution. I'm debating whether to join the group, I get tired of beating the same poor old tired donkey, but there has been some interesting debate along the way. I hope this will satisfy everyone.
There has been some interesting debate and I hope it shall continue. Whether it satisfies we shall, no doubt, learn.
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Old 10-25-2010, 04:21 AM   #10
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Seems like a good solution. I'm debating whether to join the group, I get tired of beating the same poor old tired donkey, but there has been some interesting debate along the way. I hope this will satisfy everyone.
Just remember, it is as easy to opt out as it is to opt in, so if you start to worry that the Animal Welfare organisations are getting wind of your donkey-floggin', you can quickly make it disappear from view again.

Wait, that makes it sound bad...like I'm helping you hide your abuse of animals. And I like donkeys.

Cheers,
Marc
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Old 10-25-2010, 04:23 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Alexander Turcic View Post
I'll get right to the point: Politics and religion are two subjects that are no fit for our general forums.

<snip>
Cheers,
Alexander / moderation team
Thanks Alex and the green team. It sounds like a great solution.

Cheers
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Old 10-25-2010, 04:56 AM   #12
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Thank the deities for this!
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Old 10-25-2010, 05:22 AM   #13
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Seems indeed like a pretty good solution to the problem.
I might join from time to time when I'm in a suitable mood.
Everyone is welcome to opt-in to read and join in the discussions. Another plus is the ability to ignore it or leave it behind if you choose to opt-out.

I enjoy serious discussions, as I am exposed to other interpretations of the same information, and I learn from that exposure.
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Old 10-25-2010, 06:19 AM   #14
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Religion and Politics are the most important topics to be discussed if humanity is to make it through the third millennium. To pretend they don’t exist to shuffle them off like a red-headed step-child is wrong. You are free to discuss political and/or religious issues that are on your mind in the new section. --Alexander

So yes, let’s hide it all away, let’s pretend it doesn’t exist. That will certainly solve the issues.

Last edited by Alexander Turcic; 10-25-2010 at 06:43 AM. Reason: this forum is not for discussing religion or politics
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Old 10-25-2010, 06:27 AM   #15
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Religion and Politics are the most important topics to be discussed if humanity is to make it through the third millennium.
But that doesn't mean that every forum has to debate them.
MobileRead was intended for purposes that religion and politics are only tangentially associated with. I have some reservations about the decision, but I think it is an improvement for most members (many of whom may just want a respite somewhere from the ubiquity of these issues).

MR has been pretty generous in providing space for these topics in my view; and if this makes things better for the membership as a whole, then I support it.
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