Proposals for new groups - July 2019
It's been over a year now since we first talked about adding some more groups to the site (and ended up adding several). I think the current set has mostly worked well since then, but some people have mentioned being hesitant to post as many topics as they want to on some subjects due to not wanting to flood out the more-general groups, as well as feeling like some subjects also don't fit into the existing ones.
So let's do another round of suggestions. New groups can be either top-level ones (if that seems to make the most sense) or a sub-group of an existing one (for example, this group, ~tildes.official is a sub-group of ~tildes). The functionality of sub-groups is a little weak right now, but I'll be working on that over the next few days to get it into better shape in case we end up adding some new ones.
The general process from last time seemed to work fine, so I'm just going to copy that:
Proposing a group
If you want to propose an idea for a new group (either a new top-level group or a sub-group of an existing one), make a top-level comment with the following information:
- The proposed name for the group, and a short description of its purpose/subject.
- 3 examples of topics that would be appropriate to be posted in that group. These can be existing posts already on Tildes, or hypothetical new ones. Just example titles/links is sufficient, it should just give an idea of what sort of posts you're expecting the group to get.
- A "failure plan" - if the trial group doesn't work out, what should we do with the posts from it? For example, should they be moved into an existing group or groups, with a particular tag?
Supporting a proposal
To express your support for a proposal that someone else made, post a reply to it, saying something like "I would post in this group" (assuming you actually believe you will). I don't want to interpret votes on a proposal as support, and for a group to be successful it really needs people to post to it, so I think it's most important to get at least some indication that there are users that will post in the group if it's created.
I'll let this topic run for at least 3 days before making any decisions, so don't feel like you need to rush. General questions or thoughts about groups are welcome too, it doesn't need to be entirely proposals. I've also topped given everyone 10 invites again as well. Thanks!
At its best, it would be 99% Invisible, the group. A place to discuss topics in fashion, consumer products, urban planning, etc. from a design perspective. At its worst it would be a den of consumerist whores, like the The Robb Report had a baby with the most hypebeast parts of /r/MensFashionAdvice, but even that would be pretty fun and entertaining.
We get two fringe benefits too. It would be a good avenue to expand the user base to less-techy people and possibly attract some more "creative" types. Another fringe benefit is that it might encourage testing/building out of subgroups a bit more. It would really lend itself to a lot of subgrouping like ~Design.Fashion or ~Design.Architecture.
What do you think of The PlayDate? Hipster curiosity? Underserved market in casual gaming?
Basically anything on a site like NotCot
WhoTF is buying a $150 Supreme branded brick!?
Probably scatter the posts across tech, hobbies, and misc.
(edited, fittingly, for better formatting)
Oh man, I didn't even realize that this would be something I'd want here until I saw it. I'd undoubtedly be a frequent contributor to a design group.
It would be interesting to see if this group has any success here because I find any of Reddit's design groups to be underwhelming and not worth the subscription.
My experience with the reddit ones has been that they tend to degrade in quality over time. Initially you get exposed to new, cool stuff but once they cross a certain threshold in size they fall into memey groupthink, which gets very boring. This is especially true of the fashion-advice stuff.
But that's a general reddit problem, so if Tildes actually succeeds at its stated goal of maintaining a higher caliber of discussion across the board, I don't think it'll be an issue.
And because it's so rare, a good design group, tending towards substantial discussions, could attract (a nice kind of) new users. If it gets going, I can see myself inviting a few people just for this.
Great idea. Tildes is currently way too techy/political outside the entertainment groups.
I would be interested in posts such as the first of the three examples. The other two, not so much.
But I would definitely subscribe, hoping (and perhaps posting) things towards the engineering/mechanical side of (product) design.
I'm definitely on board with this. Great idea!
I would post to this.
Honestly this place could use some more creative stuff to it. I'm down.
I wouldn't post in this, but I would gladly read posts there.
I agree in that I'm not sure quite what this group would turn into but overall I like the idea.
I wasn't joking the other day when I said I have a list of suggestions for groups and sub-groups. I've been preparing for this almost since the last round of proposals! And there are literally 16 suggestions in my little list. But I'll be sensible and choose just a few.
Also, I'll separate my proposals into different comments.
This comment is for my first and main proposal: ~socialscience. This would pick up all these posts currently sitting in ~science, covering the various social sciences, such as:
Political science (not politics)
We've got a crowd here who's very into the "hard" sciences, but not so much into the "soft" sciences. I want to make the social sciences more prominent here so that people considering signing up to Tildes can see that Tildes doesn't just cater to the STEM crowd. As one of the five academic disciplines, I feel social science deserves more presence here on Tildes. And that has nothing to do with its current level of traffic, but with the level of traffic I'm hoping we can generate by making this discipline more visible.
As for a failure plan, you can just put these posts back in ~science.
Shouldn't that be a subgroup? ~science.social
I have previously considered that. I believe that, if we were to create a sub-group for the social sciences, we should also create sub-groups for the other science disciplines:
~science.social (for psychology, economics, sociology, anthropology, geography, political science)
~science.natural (for physics, chemistry, biology, geology, astronomy, and so on)
~science.formal (for mathematics, logic, computer science)
However, over time, each of these sub-groups will develop further sub-groups, for each branch of science:
It's going to get a bit unwieldy.
Also, social science is one of the five main academic disciplines, alongside natural science, the humanities, the applied sciences, and the formal sciences. I think it warrants its own top-level group.
For what it is worth, I am actually more of a fan of the subgroup approach. I definitely agree that it would be nice to distinguish between social sciences and hard sciences, but I actually really like the distinction you have set up.
All else being equal, I would prefer this approach above a top level ~socialsciences
But I think Algernon makes a good point in referring to the 5 commonly distinguished academic disciplines, of wich the Humanities are 1, which is also a top-level group.
With ~socialscience added, the existing ~science would remain to combine these 3, which seems reasonable:
Another place to look for inspiration / guidance is the Dewey Decimal System:
I did a little digging and apparently the world of library classification gets very very complicated. (It's almost like you could create an entire field of library science around it. . .)
Dewey, to my completely untrained eye, seems the broadest and easiest to grok. The Library of Congress system though, really appeals to the data analyst in me who loves minute precision.
It's not a bad idea to be sure, I'm just not sure how useful the common distinction is in practice. We already have ~comp which is nominally a computer science/programming group that is top level even though it should technically be a top level group. Same with ~health, for example.
I am generally in favor of putting social sciences on equal footing with the natural sciences and I think the subgroup approach more properly reflects that. That being said, the social sciences are so broad that I can definitely see the advantage of separating them out.
Arguably, almost every post there is about programming and engineering, and almost no posts are about computer science.
Well, sure. I do think it would be a good place to start posting CS related things. Currently they go in ~science, which also doesn't make much sense seeing as CS is essentially math and math is not a science (that being said, math posts often go in ~science as well).
It's classed as a formal science (not a natural science), along with logic and computer science.
Humanities should also be a subgroup, in my opinion. ~science.humanities
The humanities are not science. History is not a science. Linguistics may or not be a science. Philosophy is not a science. The arts are not science. And theology definitely isn't a science!
Hmm, ok, good point.
In theory, it's really all just varying degrees of applied philosophy.
The problem with doing that is you're going to wind up with the Usenet problem eventually of having such a deeply nested hierarchy that it's a PITA for people to actually use and navigate. E.g. ~science.humanities.history.military.firearms.smallarms.development ... Which is why usability > rigid taxonomy, IMO.
I wrote a pretty long comment on this very topic on /r/tildes ages ago, if you're interested in reading it:
umm... There's a bigger problem than that: the humanities are simply not part of science. History? Philosophy? The arts? Theology?
Heh, yeah that is also true. Can't see the forest for the trees = Me
I'm going to strongly argue for a top-level group for the social sciences. The point of my request is to get the "soft" sciences out and visible, not buried under the "hard" sciences.
If you like that distinction which I didn't actually set up, then we could instead have three top-level groups:
Interestingly, I had the opposite thought, that putting social science under science would give it more visibility. Putting social science together with natural science would 'validate' it, and would additionally expose it to a group of people who would otherwise only browse ~science to see natural science. There would be some people who would ignore the top-level ~science and go straight to ~science.natural, but definitely not less than the people who would ignore a top-level ~socialscience for a ~science.
This is actually very similar to my thinking on the matter. I just don't like separating them out completely because it becomes too easy then for "STEM only" types to completely ignore the social sciences.
That's a good point. I don't like it, but it's a good point. :)
I agree with @gpl; I don't see what's 'unwieldy' about deeply-nested hierarchies. Original usenet handled it fine.
Reference re: disciplines for those interested.
Great point. Do you think it's possible each of the five disciplines merits a top level group?
Yes and no.
The point is moot, though: the formal sciences are already mostly represented by ~comp and ~tech, and the applied sciences are already partly represented by ~tech and ~health. It's a bit late now to be creating ~formalscience and ~appliedscience.
Just between you and me (you won't give away my trade secrets, will you?)...
The only reason I requested a ~humanities group last year is because I knew there was absolutely no way I was going to get groups for ~history and ~religion and ~linguistics and ~philosophy. ~humanities was my attempt to get something across the line, by bundling all these subjects together to build a stronger case for a group like this. And, I may or may not be doing the same thing with ~socialscience (instead of ~psychology, ~sociology, ~economics, and so on). But don't tell anyone!
Your secret is safe with me. I'll never tell!
So with all the other ones represented, this is really the last holdout of academic discipline representation! Makes the case for it even stronger, I would say.
Exactly. In fact, I requested ~socialscience last year, but it didn't get much traction. I'm glad to see things are different now .
I'm convinced. I support a top-level ~socialscience.
Strongly disagree. There is no ~math, no ~philosophy (which, barring ~math or its own tilde, is where logic would likely go), and computer science would be a bit out of place in ~comp. Perhaps if there were a ~comp.cs, but I don't think that would make as much sense as grouping cs with other formal sciences.
We're working on it!
I have a question: Where do us engineers sit in this? As I think it would be cool to have an engineers subgroup within the science subgroups
~tech is not restricted to information technology. It includes aviation and electric vehicles. It also currently includes rocketry, which might be moving to a new ~space group. These non-IT posts tend to get drowned out by the IT posts by all the IT-interested people here, but ~tech was never intended to be just about IT.
Alternatively, you could request a top-level ~engineering group. I think that's justifiable. Or, at least, a ~tech.engineering sub-group.
I feel a tech engineering subgroup would be best, as I think engineering is too niche to just be a group whole by itself.
If you want it, suggest it. Post a top-level comment here to propose ~tech.engineering and see what support it gets.
This was my first thought as well. @Algernon_Asimov, I presume this was a conscious choice to suggest a new top-level group? If so, why not a sub-group?
I think this is a good idea generally and would post to it, but I have some apprehensions.
Because social sciences are less respected generally than hard sciences, every opinionated person thinks they're a qualified economist or sociologist and the actual scientific methodologies in these fields often get held up against those of the hard sciences. I think a group like this would need some pretty heavy and active moderation by some qualified people to keep discussions productive to keep them focused on prevailing consensus wisdom in social sciences. Without that I have real worries it would devolve into only showcasing half-educated pontification from so-called "rationalists," as often happens on places like Reddit or HackerNews.
We only have one moderator: Deimos. And I don't believe he's a social scientist! ;)
I'm no social scientist, but I do have some experience moderating academic-type subreddits, and I'd be more than happy to keep an eye on this group until such time as we get more social scientists here.
I can put the call out among some experienced moderators and social scientists on Reddit. I still have some contacts from back in the day. I might be able to convince a few of them to come here and help raise the tone of discussion.
I'm a social scientist by education, though not by profession. I could help as well, but like you said it does need some real mod-muscle that the site infrastructure might not have yet.
On the other hand, now that I think about it more, many of these problems can manifest anyway since these discussions currently happen in the ~science group and that would, arguably, make the issue even more pronounced since it's directly subsumed under hard sciences. So maybe this is actually the lesser of two evils.
And since I echoed my initial concern in your other post about subgrouping out ~humanities I think this "on the other hand" applies there too.
Edit: Just noticed you pointed this out yourself in response to that other post.
This is off-topic for the given discussion, but bears mentioning. It's more or less an open secret (or not?) that other users have been granted some mod-powers, like editing tags or titles. Those tools are, ultimately, moderation tools. And while this is a privilege granted by him, let's not continue to keep up the façade that Deimos is the only one with such control over the content on this site.
Deimos is the only person who can:
That puts him in a whole different class to the rest of us who can only:
At best, we're curators: we decide where posts go and how they're presented. We can not control what gets posted or who can post. When NaraVara talks about "needing some pretty heavy and active moderation by some qualified people to keep discussions productive", that sort of thing can be done only by Deimos. I, with my meagre curatorial powers, can not stop people posting low-quality content or writing stupid comments or insulting other Tildesians. My only powers to act in those situations is to use the 'Malice' label or send a message to Deimos - which is exactly the same powers that everyone else has.
And the existence of people having these curatorial powers is far from being a secret!
It could help by avoiding the term 'science' altogether. Instead of using ~socialscience, where conversations would naturally be framed around 'harder' research methods found in hard sciences, it may be better to have a group specifically for qualitative research.
A name like ~qualitativeresearch would immediately differentiate itself from traditional notions of 'hard' research and could do a better job at framing conversations around topics like economics or psychology. From there, topics could just be organized by subgroup. For example, ~qualitativeresearch.psychology.
The only problem I can think of is that these topics do also use quantitative research, and the group would exclude those. Maybe a ~quantitativeresearch group would be good too.
Your last part points to the problem with that distinction: A lot of social science is also quantitative.
But more importantly, it makes very little sense to me to divide academia ("science" in the broad sense that doesn't limit itself to the natural sciences) by methodology. Normally, one is interested/specializes in a discipline and engages with research of any methodology (even if one has preferences or only used one type themself) because only that enable one to gain a full picture. If we used your distinction, such wildly diverging displines as medicine and political science or educational sciences and eocnomics would be clustered in the same groups.
I fully support the original proposal of a separate ~socialscience group that is on par with ~science (~humanities already exists). Maybe we could in some way prime peaolle that qualitative methodologies are as valid as quantitative ones though.
Anyway, I will for sure contribute as that's my specialty.
I'd definitely read & post to ~socialscience. Fills in an excellent gap between ~science and ~humanities.
I think this is a good idea (as per conversation lower down in this thread). I would definitely browse this group. I might post to it occasionally, though my academic interests lie more towards formal science (specifically math) and ~comp.
This causes a problem for me: I don't really do it much, but if I were to post linguistics related stuff, where do I post it? ~socialsciences or ~humanities? You could say just go to ~humanities, but linguistics is both (and it is also deeply computational and has tight relationship with medicine), so stuff might fall under the umbrella of both at the same time or one of them.
I don't think a trichotomy like ~humanities, ~science, and ~socialsciences is really productive, especially given the current tendency of both ~humanities and ~socialsciences towards more quantitative and statistical methods in all areas (including even literary criticism with digital analyses and structuralist research). Also, the boundary between humanities and social sciences is not all that clear as the disciplines interoperate more often than not.
Maybe a big umbrella group like ~research + tags could be better? It'd not exclude divulgation articles and pop-sci stuff like ~science and ~humanities already include, unlike something like ~academia would suggest; and it'd make posting interdisciplinary work (which, again, is the majority of work out there today) easier.
I'd love to see a separation of ~games into two sub-groups:
Each sub-group would be about computer games (which is the majority of posts in ~games) and tabletop games, including board games.
P.S. The failure plan is just to roll these back into ~games.
I would prefer ~games.video.
.computermight appear to exclude console games. Thankfully there's not much reason to divide console/PC games on a site as civil as this one.
If you say so. I'm happy to take whatever someone else suggests. I don't really know what the best terminology is for these. My main goal is to get ~games.tabletop separated out.
Something bothers me about "games.video". I know it's logical but it sound stupid/backwards and if we add a few more (and do we have third layers like ~games.video.pc?) it could sound even messier. I'm kinda for the redundancy of a ~games.videogames, even if that probably annoys the hell out of some people who want to keep it minimal.
I definitely agree here, ~games.videogames is unambiguous and sounds the best and most directly reflects the idea behind subgroups. Videogames being the subfocus in question. The slight redundancy doesn’t seem like a problem to me.
We could always be chan dorks and do games.vidya
oh yeah that's good. and if we wanted it to be more professional we could name it ~games.video!
I definitely like ~games.video over ~games.computer, but this taxonomy feels a bit clunky? The meaning of ~games.video isn't obvious at first glance. ~games.videogames probably isn't better, because the 2nd games is redundant.
Good idea. And board games doesn’t really include card games so they can be ~games.physical as well. Maybe even a third category for role-playing?
Tabletop games (~games.tabletop) includes role-playing games, and board games, and card games, and dice games.
However, based on a book I'm reading at the moment, called 'The Revenge of Analog', which includes a chapter called "The Revenge of Boardgames", maybe ~games.analogue should be the complement to ~games.digital. :PEDIT: I'm really regretting making this tongue-in-cheek non-serious joke.
Why separate it out like that? How about ~games.digital; ~games.analogue, which can be separated into ~games.analogue.rpg, ~games.analogue.board (and ~games.analogue can be a catch-all for the other categories you mention, which I doubt are yet popular enough to merit their own subgoups).
You start out implying that my categories need justification, and then you suggest the same categories:
~games.digital is ~games.computer
~games.analogue is ~games.tabletop
They're the same categories, just with different names.
However, I think ~games.computer (or ~games.video) and ~games.tabletop are obvious categories which most people can understand. ~games.tabletop, especially, is much clearer to people than ~games.analogue.
Ah; I thought you were suggesting three separate second-level groups: ~games.computer/video, ~games.analogue, and ~games.tabletop. In that case, we are in agreement.
And that's why ~games.tabletop is better than ~games.analogue
~games.tabletop is a clearer name than ~games.analogue
I think people can get the context pretty quickly, and people think of "video games" and not "digital games" most of the time. Why reinvent the nomenclature?
Similarly, there's an understanding of what tabletop games are, so renaming it to analog or analogue doesn't seem like a particularly good idea.
I think the clunkiness of ~games.video is minimal. The term is understandable, and the way that subgroups works will make it easier to understand as we all become more familiar with group hierarchies.
I agree. r/trees and r/marijuanaenthusiasts on reddit do okay, after all. The name is good for first impressions and finding groups you aren't yet familiar with, but it isn't the only way people get to know what the group is about.
But just to play devil's pedant: There may be some people who see ~games.video and think it is for videos about games (which is definitely a thing).
Aesthetically I prefer ~games.videogames over ~games.video . I argue that ~games.videogames is not actually redundant because "video games" has become an open compound word. ~games.videogames is clearer than ~games.video in the same way that ~school.highschool would make more sense than ~school.high
~dogs.hot would be the extreme of nonsensical compound reversal. ~rooms.dining is on the other extreme. I put ~games.video somewhere in between.
(What in the hell.sam am I on about‽)
I think the syntactic reversal is fun. We're so serious about proper hierarchical grouping that we reverse common phrases like "video games" to "games > video".
This also matches well with the hierarchical nature already established in other groups, and with a decades-long precedent in Usenet groups. If someone asks me where I live, I don't say "USA dot WA dot Seattle" and yet ~news.usa.wa.seattle seems completely intuitive to me.
Agreed. To me this seems like a natural split that would only be needed more and more as ~games gets more popular. Might as well do it now.
I also agree with @teaearlgraycold and would prefer ~games.video as well.
EDIT: Actually, I unironically like the idea of ~games.digital and ~games.analogue more than ~games.video and ~games.tabletop. Sure, "digital" isn't as immediately understandable as "video" and "analogue" isn't as immediately understandable as "tabletop", but I think those terms more accurately describe the purpose of the separate subgroups than anything else.
Besides, ~games.video is awkward and ~games.tabletop is, in no small thanks to the recent rise of the tabletop gaming industry, going to make people think of it exclusively as a place for board games and D&D, rather than a place that, aside from those things, is also an appropriate place to discuss and share card games and other types of games.
I don't know, I don't want to get particularly invested in the idea, but I can't deny that I really like ~games.digital and ~games.analogue. It is, if nothing else, certainly more stylish.
I feel like both groups would have plenty of activity and ~games.tabletop would probably become more active after making this split.
I would post in these, and am for ~games.videogames being the name of the first one. It is the common term for these games, avoids ambiguity (games.video could be interpreted as videos of games like let’s plays), and accurately reflects the logic behind subgroup naming (the subgroup of games is video games, not video). The slight redundancy isn’t really an issue.
I'm with you - the redundancy doesn't bother me as it makes things clearer and is the most easily understood. Names wont always be perfect, but they can be as clear as possible and this seems about right to me.
I would post in both of these subgroups.
I would certainly post in ~games.tabletop, ~games.analogue, or whatever variation we decided on. I am not all that interested in the content that would otherwise go into ~games.digital, so this idea makes a lot of sense to me.
I'd post in both of these, (a video game focused one and a tabletop focused one). I'd love to pave the way to a Warhammer commuinty here someday.
This seems like a natural growth and I'd post / participate in both. However, for the name I'm in favor of ~games.video or ideally ~games.digital along with ~games.analogue. I like that a lot.
I'm not a fan of ~games.analogue. I only mentioned it as a joke. I wasn't serious (hence the smiley at the end of that comment).
As a boardgamer, I don't think of myself as playing "analogue" games. They're board games - or, at worst, tabletop games. "Analogue" isn't a relevant description of these games.
What about ~games.physical? or ~games.irl?
To me, "physical" and "real life" games are things like hide-and-seek and hopscotch and skipping rope and tag/chasey/tiggy and marbles. They're games that you play with your physical body.
On the other hand, tabletop games are specifically games that you play on top of a table - such as Dungeons & Dragons, Yahtzee, Catan, Monopoly, Magic the Gathering, and poker. It's an existing category which people will recognise.
Remember: the aim here is not to come up with the cleverest or smartest names, but the names which will be easiest for general readers to understand and recognise.
I figured as much, but I do like it.
If you landed on a new site and were looking for a place to read about and discuss boardgames, would "games.analogue" seem like the place you were looking for? Does this name reflect your real-world interest in board games? Do you really think of them as "analogue" games?
It's not how I naturally think about them, but I have a tendency toward slightly awkward names which fit the subject better. "Board games" is too restrictive for obvious reasons and "tabletop games" in my experience is used to mean "board games which we want to be taken seriously" moreso than "any game which is played on a tabletop". I like taking something without many attached connotations or baggage like "analogue games" and forcing it.
I have no expectation that it would actually happen...I just wanted to attach my #1 choice as well. It's fine with me if no one else takes it seriously.
Don't worry, if ~games.analog ever becomes a thing I will protest with posts about games using analogue electronics (and if ~games.digital is made, I guess I could post things like Dr. Nim)
The name is up for debate, but I think it would be similar to ~lgbt as a communal space for women to discuss womanly things. I have no idea what the site demographics are, but I suspect it leans pretty strongly male just from who I've interacted with here, so it might be good to carve out some space for subaltern voices.
Arguably, this could work as a subgroup under ~talk, but I think having a top level group will both serve as an important signaling mechanism to make it clear that this is an inclusive space and also give it a broader scope to discuss more serious/weighty matters than the casual conversation format in ~talk.
And just to be all fastidiously fair (in the Title IX sense) about it, we could also have ~GuyTalk for men to talk about man things, like how to shave and what kinds of jock-straps work best.
Possible topics (shamelessly lifted from Reddit's /r/TwoXChromosomes)
How do you make girl friends as an adult?
Any experiences with IUDs and digestive issues?
When miscarriage is a crime
Fold it into ~misc or ~talk.
I don't really like this idea, gendering the groups. This would also inevitably imply that the rest is a male space. ~lgbt is different in that it is a different, mostly political sphere of discussion. This here is basically some sort of gender segregation, and it presupposes what men would be interested in. Personally, I'm interested in anything that regards women, as a male, out of intellectual interest and general curiosity. I'm also really averse to the illogical "if you're not X, you can't comment on topics that regard X", which would be encouraged by the existence of a group like this.
I'd be really sad if the promiscousness of the discussion sphere here was compromised in any way if I'm honest.
Tildes is approximately 85% male. This is not unusual for online communities, which is problematic. I think it's more than worthwhile to acknowledge the inherent maleness of the internet insofar as the flow of discussion may be negatively affected by a lack of diverse perspectives. Like it or not, the internet is already awfully gender-segregated, and ignoring the issue is not going to solve it. The value of "girl talk" communities is not to somehow segregate anyone further, but to introduce spaces where the voices of women are better represented in places where they are most certainly underrepresented as it is.
/r/TwoXChromosomes, rooted in a similar concept, notes regarding male participation in their FAQ, "All are welcome. It's not really about who you are, but about the quality of the discussion you'll generate. Absolutely feel free to comment." A "girl talk" subreddit doesn't inherently imply that men are unwelcome, but rather that they need to take their participation much more seriously than they would in a subreddit whose focal point is not about representation from a traditionally underrepresented group.
This doesn't just apply to the internet. When I got to university I was right next door to a women's college, the existence of which would only raise an eyebrow if your perspective of equality is entirely theoretical. The reason that spaces like this exist not only online but in real life is because women are in fact underrepresented nearly everywhere, most importantly in powerful political/economic positions. Spaces led by women encourage thoughtful discourse about women's issues/perspectives in a way that spaces dominated by men—the default on Tildes or almost any other website—inherently cannot.
That most ~ are men does not imply Tildes is led or dominated by men.
The survey you linked is not one with a random sample, and Tildes has grown quite a bit since then.
Also, this is not Reddit, so the comparison does not work. There is no toxicity to avoid here, simply, there is no toxicity here. Yet, at least. Especially
People here do take their participation seriously everywhere, that's the point of the website itself.
i mean, people can say that all they want but it is really obvious that tildes is dominated by men; to act otherwise just because a survey isn't a random sample and tildes has grown is pretty ludicrous. the visible female population on this website is like, 10 people at the most, and the places tildes recruits from are also male dominated and cater to demographics which are not known for their gender parity by any stretch of the word.
I've told what I can on this, and this comment basically adds nothing to the discussion, even if I'm completely wrong: the comment I respond to already lays out the argument, and yours is basically an upvote on that...
Well, except the "ludicrous" part. Whenever I interact with you, it's these adjectives: ridiculous, ludicrous, silly. I don't know what to do with this, maybe I should rather ignore you given this is not really a civil way to discuss something. It's almost as if you'd rather make fun of me for a mistake than really teach me something and change my mind.
Apart from that, all I can add is this: I don't think "male majority" necessarily means "male dominated"; the inverse is not completely a non-sequitur, but I don't believe it is the case here. We're simply male-majority. And yes, the survey is not dependable. That's of course different from saying that we could've became %80 percent women from a diverse set of ethnolinguistic backgrounds, which I of course don't say that is the case.
i mean, no offense, but it really strains credibility to say that a website which is literally 85% male according to our last survey--which, you would need to garnish by close to 20% to even get it to around the demographics of reddit, and which frankly no amount of unskewing a survey will reveal with tildes's current userbase--isn't in any way male dominated, particularly when a decent number of our most vocal female voices historically have actually been driven off the site in part because of the fact that they feel unwelcome here. it's also not like we have a decent female contingent on here or something which only shows up selectively; most people on here are males, and most discussions about women or women's issues are males opining or males speaking on behalf of the females in their life.
Yeah, I think the most important part of what you say here is that the character of the conversation here tends to be...dude-y. I think that's the biggest piece, but it's more abstract and difficult to concretely talk about if someone else doesn't look at it that way, so we instead talk about the reason it's like that, which is most obviously the amount of dudes.
But let's be honest here: you don't need to look at an old survey to make a pretty good guess at the gender demographics, and I'm sure I'm not alone in having a bit of a "here we go again" response when we land on certain topics. If Tildes truly felt like a gender-neutral place where there was perfect harmony and did not skew heavily in a gendered direction, maybe then it's worth getting into if raw numbers matter. For now though, we should probably focus on the strongly male qualities of our community rather than the sheer quantities.
So imo the essential questions come when we loop back and ask if this is something we want to solve and if ~girltalk would help in doing so.
Thank you for not citing the third paragraph of my comment which is what your part really responds to:
If this really was the case, I'd really love to know how this happened; I've seemingly missed out on this.
Apart from that, I still don't know
why male majority should necessarily mean male dominated, and
what this means in the context of the proposal for ~girltalk?
I don't want to be misunderstood here: I definitely do want to see way more women here, and would be happy if it was half and half. But I still don't agree that a gender-segregated group will help with it, and I still think such a group is bad for the community. I have also already declared support for kfwyre's proposal of somehting along the lines of ~talk.gender.
This is my last comment in this discussion. If you'll reply, you'll be replying to the community, not me. If I'm honest, I doubt I'll ever feel intellectually safe interacting with you here given what this whole thing has become. I come here to learn stuff, not to win at arguments. Yet here we are in a vicious cycle where we repeat identical comments and add exactly nothing at all to the discussion.
i mean, my point, which i feel has been pretty clear throughout all of this, has been that it literally is a male dominated site--in other words, that the premise that you've been arguing here is fundamentally flawed--and that it accordingly doesn't really matter that 'male majority' doesn't inherently mean 'male dominated' because we are pretty unambiguously the latter for a variety of reasons.
Here's my "upvote" to @alyaza's comment: despite her tone and style (which is a whole different discussion!), her underlying point is absolutely valid. Tildes is dominated by men.
Here's an exercise for you. Think of some "power users": the people who post a lot, or comment a lot, or seem to have influence on Tildes. It shouldn't be hard to come up with about 10 usernames. Now, try to figure out how many of those "power users" are male and how many are female.
Here's my Top 10 list (I'm not saying there aren't other "power users", but 10 is a nice round number):
Deimos is male.
I am male.
Amarok is male.
cfabbro is male. (I misgendered him once, and he corrected me.)
hungariantoast is male.
deing is male.(EDIT: @deing has contacted me to advise that I'm wrong.)
kfwyre is male.
you are male.
spit-evil-olive-tips is unknown (but I would guess male - unless "palindromic" is a gender?).
The only one in the Top 10 who's female is alyaza.
(All this information is based on comments these people have made themselves. I haven't guessed any of these people's genders, except in one case.)
There were more females in the "power users" group in the very early days of Tildes (I'm thinking of Kat and Catt, for starters), but they're either not around any more or have reduced their activity.
Tildes absolutely is led and dominated by men. Now, I'm not saying we're all sexists. Based on what I've observed, I believe most of us are not sexist. But we are men, not women, and that means we need to remember that the female viewpoint isn't as represented here as it should be.
As much as I would like to be an Arthur C. Clarke-ean immortal palindromic being who has transcended the material plane of existence...I'm a cisgender man.
I think we're kinda hang up in semantics here, and I'm equal parts guilty of it as alyaza is: "dominated" for me means something like men expressly exerting dominance, and I define the situation as "majority" because I don't think the imbalanced representation is the result of Tildes' men's deliberate actions. I have to admit my part at furthering such a futile discussion, I'm sorry.
The real problem here is the low number of women here---both among "power users" and in general---which I don't object to (tho I'd add patience_unlimited to that list, IIRC they are a woman, but don't trust me on remembering stuff :)). That is something we need a solution for, and hopefully the discussion goes on focusing on that. My stance is that, we need to try everything else before resorting to having gendered groups, because there are perils to that.
Maybe we should organise to go and try find new users in spaces where we can bring in more female voices? Would making an announcement over at r/TwoXChromosomes or similar help?
P.S. FWIW, that "spit-evil-olive-tips" is a palindrome was a surprising revelation to me, never noticed that before.
People don't have to expressly exert dominance in order for that dominance to exist. This site is male-dominated by sheer force of numbers. It's nothing more sinister than that.
Elsewhere in this thread, you thanked @kfwyre for teaching you "the utility of this sort of cues for people that belong to oppressed groups". Having a group for women follows exactly the same logic as a group for LGBT people.
It took me a while to notice, too.
What if there were something like ~talk.gender in which people could post things that explicitly deal with gender, but we don't separate them out by identity? I feel like that could be an inclusive catch all and save us from quantizing out ~girltalk, ~guytalk, ~enbytalk, etc.
I'd favour that over ~<gender>talk, but then whether tags don't already cut it becomes a matter of discussion (and it'd be one I feel neutral about).
Maybe we could rename ~lgbt as ~gender, and that'd be more inviting for folk that want to discuss gender and sex issues but not specifically LGBT? Tho I don't really know what's actually going on over at ~lgbt, so I may be suggesting something that'd annoy those who frequent that space. Sorry if that's the case.
I think there's a pragmatic argument to be made to reclassifying ~lgbt as ~gender and ~sexuality or something to that effect, as it makes sense from the perspective of a taxonomy.
That said, I think there's a strong benefit to having the ~lgbt group as is. Its presence makes an implicit statement that people like me are welcome here. It's similar to when businesses put a small rainbow flag on their storefront. An affirmative declaration that I'm welcome isn't nearly as necessary as it used to be given that queer acceptance has increased so much so quickly, but it wasn't too long ago that it was a real concern for me (and no doubt others like me).
Even with how far acceptance has come, I can't deny that one of the factors that made me comfortable in joining Tildes in the first place was that it had an ~lgbt group. Though I don't post there often, its presence let me know that my presence would be valued rather than denigrated.
Hey, thanks! You taught me something that I'll keep in mind when designing invitations or public spaces---if that last one ever happens. I hadn't tought of the utility of this sort of cues for people that belong to oppressed groups.
This warmed my heart! Thank you. There's actually a lot more I can say on the subject. Fair warning, what follows is a significant overshare:
Affirmative signaling goes a long way, especially in very oppressive environments. I grew up in an extremely homophobic time and place, and long before I was comfortable being out to anyone and everyone, I would wear a small pink triangle. Most people had no idea what it was, but the queer people in my area would recognize it immediately. I saw it and other subtle queer iconography (e.g. black triangles, lambdas) on others as well. We did this because the rainbow would have opened us up to harm, as it was recognizable to a wider audience, so our lesser-known symbols were a way of "hiding in plain sight." They were meaningful to the ingroup but neutral to the outgroup, which made them, and consequently us, safe.
Often when I tell people about this they assume that identification of this sort was a precursor to a hookup, but that couldn't be further from the truth. We chose to signal ourselves not because we were interested in romantic encounters with one another but because it was the only way to demonstrate that we were not alone in the toxic, oppressive environment we were living in. Most times I saw someone wearing a subtle gay icon I wouldn't even say anything to them, as doing so could out both of us, and that would have put us in danger. Instead I just took silent satisfaction in knowing that I wasn't alone in this world, and I hoped they got the same message from me.
After I started coming out and becoming more open about myself, I could no longer rely on the "safety" of silence. Any public place is somewhere that I could be seen or recognized by someone who knew about me. At this point I now had to perpetually consider the question "am I safe here?" (as in safe from physical harm) wherever I went. This was not an abstract concern. While I have never been explicitly gay bashed, I know people who have. I've also had a laundry list of terrible experiences including being threatened both verbally and with weaponry, having my property vandalized, being spit at and on, being outed, and having false allegations made against me. Safety wasn't merely a concern for me--it was essential to my survival.
By this time some businesses were comfortable with putting tiny rainbow flags in their front windows. Others might instead hide them in a subtle place inside or drown them in a noisy bulletin board. Their presence could and sometimes did invite unwanted attention from homophobes, but they also let people like me know this was a safer establishment for us to be in.
I would prioritize these places because they reduced the latent threat that I had to constantly gauge. Plus, I liked supporting businesses that supported people like me. Here's the thing: never once did I actually discuss this with a business owner. I didn't walk into a cafe, flag down the barista, announce that I was gay and that I appreciated their tiny rainbow flag amidst all the band flyers and bumper stickers. No way! That would have been too compromising. Instead I bought my coffee just like anyone else, but the coffee tasted better because it came with comfort. Being welcomed is never a bad thing, and feeling safe is never a bad thing, and a quiet, tiny symbol like that meant the world to people like me.
Things have changed considerably since then, and I also moved away to a more accepting environment, as sadly many queer individuals from my home area do. I no longer need to look for iconography in real life to assure my safety, though I certainly still appreciate it when it's there. Unfortunately, online communities often lag behind some of our real-world ones, and the homophobia I experienced went from being primarily face-to-face to being primarily username-to-username.
For a while I fought the good fight and tried to change hearts and minds online, and I hope that in some ways I was successful. But fighting the tide gets tiring and, as I got older and discovered self-respect from my new real-world setting, I had increasingly little patience for anyone who would try to demean or deny my human dignity. I was exhausted from starting not from square 1, but square -6 with people. And it's a special kind of awful shoveling the same shit over and over again. The usernames always changed but the arguments stayed the same.
I grew weary of having yet another person's fragility shatter into hostility when I told them the word "fag" hurts people like me. I hated hearing ad nauseum how having characters like me in media was "pandering," or that having characters like me limited enjoyment, because who on earth could possibly relate to characters like me? I'd been empathizing with straight characters as gay man my entire fucking life, yet username after username couldn't deign to muster up even a moment of outside perspective for someone like me. I resented that people like me were assumed to be outside of the very communities we'd been a part of and helped build. I am not an outsider to my interests, so getting treated like one gets real old, real quick.
I don't have time for that nonsense anymore, and I'm not particularly interested in subjecting myself to it. After years of fighting for mere scraps of the basest recognition from hateful and inconsiderate digital crowds, I've learned the incredibly valuable lesson that my dignity is non-negotiable. I shouldn't have to live online in a community that assumes otherwise.
So, just like I did in my real life, I moved.
As I was looking around for a neighborhood where I wouldn't have to endlessly defend my claim to it, I noticed a little thing called Tildes. Amidst the hostile environments of the internet, it was a kindly little cafe--with a rainbow flag out front. When I stepped in, I learned that it was a calm and quiet space, where people weren't free to shout whatever they wanted. When I looked around I saw other people there like me. Nobody was harassing them, questioning their right to be there, or telling them they were mentally ill. Instead we were just part of the cafe's normal crowd.
Eagerly, I ordered a cup at the counter and sat down at a table.
And I haven't left since.
Thanks a billion! I left this sit there too long before reading it, because I knew it was more than worth the read, and I was too busy to read it properly in the last few days. Now that I read it, really, thank you!
I haven't really interacted much with LGBTQ+ communities online before Tildes: I'd mostly actively use reddit for tech and language learning, and HackerNews again for tech. But I've been an avid lurker of those topics, and I want to say this: it's taken lots of reading philosophy, literature, news and biographies; and lots of reflection, in order for me to move on from the homophobia, transphobia and misogyny that one inherits from a highly patriarchal society; but equally effective has been the efforts of people like you who share their experiences and argue against bigots and ignorant haters online on Reddit, HN, YouTube, Twitter, etc., thousands of comments and hundreds of videos and tweets. So that efforts struggling against fools were not totally time lost with no gains for it: there are ignorant but curious people out there that learn a lot from people like you, and who may end up changing. IDK if we ever crossed ways before on the interwebs before Tildes, but thanks a lot if I was one of those "one starfishes" that you helped save!
I am really sorry for and sympathise with all of your bad experiences, and I'm glad participating in a community that can make all of us feel at home. Things are changing fast, maybe bullying and patriarchal cis/heteronormative oppression will be mostly dealt with way quicker than expected!
~lgbt covers both minority gender and minority sexuality issues. Renaming it ~gender would alienate the lgb part and opening it up to all gender specific issues would crowd (and possible drown out) the t part.
A month and a half ago ~lgbt held a vote for what the name of the group should be. They voted to keep the name ~lgbt
Having a ~gender group wouldn't be a bad thing, but taking ~lgbt away would be.
We just went through the process of deciding what that group should be called, and the majority voted for ~lgbt. Let's not override the majority of those people.
Also, as a gay man, "gender" doesn't really relate to what I want to talk about. I don't have any gender-based issues.
EDIT: Fixed wrong link.
I won't disrespect that, it was something I did not know.
Homosexuality (and sexuality in general) is a gender issue. You put it in a way that makes debating your point difficult b/c any counterargument would seem like a personal attack, but I can't agree you here. That you're a gay man and that this is your stance does not mean it is correct for every lgbtq+ individual out there. If you said lgbtq+ and gender studies do not completely overlap, I could agree you there, but as your comment is, I have to disagree.
If you're a newcomer to Tildes and you're looking for a group about the LGBT community, will you recognise ~gender as the group you're looking for?
To me, ~gender says this is a group about issues between men and women - gender equality, equal pay, unequal representation in the workforce. Or, it's about how men and women navigate life differently due to the different issues each gender faces. Or maybe it's about transgender people and their issues. ~gender does not tell me this group is about minority sexualities such as homosexual people like me.
As I just said to you elsewhere, this exercise isn't about find the cleverest or smartest names for groups, it's about making groups that people will recognise as relevant to them.
As I said above, I respect the choice of the community, I won't insist on ~gender. That was a transient idea in response to kfwyre anyways, not a proper thought-out proposal or anything.
You apparently mistook my answer to your second paragraph as a defence of ~gender. That was not the case. In that light,
Neither of us can speak for everyone, obviously, but I most likely wouldn't have immediately recognized ~gender as an LGBT+ community. In fact, given that it strays so far from the conventional/common terminology, I might have even wrongly assumed it was a group for TERFs and their ilk (like /r/gendercritical is), which might have potentially scared me off the site entirely.
I’m a man but I’m still subscribed to TwoXChromosomes on Reddit. It doesn’t preclude discussion, just creates a space that isn’t dominated by a specific group as the default is now.
If nothing else, people who don’t conform to the majority view benefit from having a place to vent to each other about it. I even post on TwoX sometimes, but when I do I’m mindful of my role and provide my specific perspective if it’s actually being asked for or provide the perspective I’ve heard from women I know that’s missing from discussion (e.g. story from my mother or sister about the perspective of an Indian woman if I think it helps to bring perspective from another culture).
I support this, but would strongly prefer ~talk.women and ~talk.men (nonbinary people already fit into ~lgbt)
My concern about talk.women as an alternative, in addition to the signaling value of a top-level discussion space, is also whether a post like When miscarriage is a crime would show up there. What do you think?
Such discussions would probably end up in ~news, I would think, but it may have a bit of a chilling effect as people might prefer to have that sort of conversation in a "safer space" and avoid posting things that won't click for a male-dominated community.
In general, I don't think we should set any precedent that giving a group a top-level name is the way we show what we think is important. Tildes Ain't Reddit. Reddit has thousands of subreddits, many (most?) of which have some overlap with each other. Tildes is going for a hierarchical approach instead. We're eventually going to create lots of very important and valuable 2nd-level and 3rd-level groups.
I don't think that belongs in either ~talk.women or ~girltalk. It might (hopefully will) create talk / discussion, but by itself it's an opinion article with a news hook. In the current group structure it'd fit best in ~health in my mind - the subject is about women getting punished criminally for a personal health problem.
The issue I see with that is that if you carve out ~girltalk as a "safer space" to discuss women's issues, you're tacitly assuming that the rest of the site might be a less safe place to do so. I think that assumption is completely justified on Reddit - but we should try to build Tildes so that it doesn't have to be like that. /r/TwoXChromosomes is great because unlike the rest of reddit, the moderators there can operate with a rule of "if you're a chauvinist asshole, we won't hesitate to ban you". I think all of Tildes should be like that (and I think it already is, included in the overall rule of "low tolerance for people who make others' experience worse").
Would I be wrong though? I didn't mean "safer space" as literally unsafe to comment. But in some cases women might want to get women's views on certain issues without having the community's more generic view dominate the discussion as it would everywhere else. Just because of the demographics of the site it's going to be a male dominant view. It doesn't signal importance, it signals that there is space for viewpoints outside the norm.
Taking an example from myself as an Indian, I'm just never going to post a topic about the movie "Sholay" in ~movies. I wouldn't do it because a.) the ~movies community is less likely to care about it and b.) I don't actually care what people who don't know about classic Hindi cinema have to say about "Sholay." It's not even because I'd feel unsafe doing it, it's because having that conversation is inevitably going to be me having to give a remedial education about the film's relevance to the development of Hindi film and I just wanted to gush about how well the movie holds up rather than having to put on my educator hat.
In that case the use can be satisfied with ~movies.India, but for women's issues its different. Because they're not just general talk, there is a woman's spin on TONS of subject areas that run parallel to the typical, male view. This would be the issue with the miscarriage article going in ~health. It is possible, and even quite likely that women would want to raise that article as a chance to commiserate with other women about the implications of it and have this be in a space that's recognized as a zone that is for them to do that rather than having it be dictated by the male-dominated user base throughout the rest of the site. But I strongly believe that, as is, a women wouldn't bother to post that article to ~news because she just doesn't care what a bunch of dudes have to say about it. This lowers the salience of the site as a space for her. You could have the same article in multiple places even, since different groups are likely to have completely different types of conversations about it.
I agree that this is absolutely true. So in the long run, if we do add ~girltalk, would we eventually add sub-groups to it? ~girltalk.news, ~girltalk.health, ~girltalk.food, ~girltalk.tv, ~girltalk.movies, ~girltalk.sports, etc? (yes, those are just a bunch of current top-level groups with girltalk prepended)
I don't want to fragment Tildes with an assumption that the top-level groups are assumed-male-by-default and that you have to go into ~girltalk if you want to talk to other women. If ~girltalk was created and was successful, it'd become a self-fulfilling prophecy where the top-level groups really would be overwhelmingly male. It would make the site as a whole demonstrably worse to have that happen.
I don’t think that would be needed. It’s not really how women centric subs work anywhere else, and it’s not like the point is to subgroup and subcategorize for its own sake, it’s just to have sub-communities that make sense.
Does the fact that Tildes currently operates as one big site with the same faces, rules (short of slightly different expectations like fluffy conversation in ~talk), and behavior everywhere impact your preference at all? I like what you're getting at, I'm just not sure that a top level group would be meaningfully different in terms of how many dudes chime in.
(this has me thinking that some equivalent to flair might be useful in this case)
The fact that the site is presently just one big group definitely reduces the utility of things somewhat. At present the groups are functionally another form of tag based filtering and wouldn't be so different from a flair. But as I understand it, this isn't the long-term plan and the groups will eventually have different communities in them.
What are those cases exactly and how do you think a "male stance" would differ from a female one?
I am a cisgender heterosexual male from a priviledged ethnic group of my own country; yet I am more informed on female social (and at times health) issues than many women I know and knew in my private life. There are many women out there that know of men's health and social issues better than most
womenmen do. Many men are way more progressive on women's issues than most women, and again, vice versa, many women are way more progressive than the vast majority of men on men's issues. I've met many women that are pro-chastity and pro-life and even pro-patriarchy. Many support stuff like hijab or male circumcision.
The only safe space out there is the one where people are looking at things progressively and with an open mind. Go among women that are not so, and it'll be as toxic and unsafe as a male-only college dormitory.
I don't think we have anything to gain from such segregation because we are already as safe a place as it gets, and the vast majority of users are anonymous, so that gender ratio is essentially unknown: the survey was attended by a tiny minority of users. And put that aside: if tildes is not a safe enough space that we can talk gender stuff promiscuously without resorting to stuff like this, we've basically failed out goals, might as well take the site offline to be honest.
Comparing Tildes to Reddit is counterproductive because Reddit is a cesspool and you need safe spaces. I'm in safe spaces there: r/emacs, r/languagelearning, r/debian, and that's it. But here, things are different, and segregation is detrimental to the goals of this website. I find segregation like this primitive, if I'm self-deprecatingly honest. We are humans, and the issues of both genders belong to both of the genders together. And that someone from a gender X is better informed on issues regarding their gender X is not a given (the inverse in most of the cases actually).
That was my last two cents on this topic. Sorry if I was a bit harsh, I'm just hell-bent on getting rid of segregation in human society and believe it's one of those things that's at the root of many social and societal issues.
Edit: fix a mistake in a sentence, see the crossed out word above.
I've worked in male dominated places most of my working life (labor). For many years I owned a business where the majority of my employees were male. Often I would hire someone with amazing qualities, but managing them was a nightmare solely because they refused to listen to me, their employer, because I was a woman. I am positive that there are men who would have wonderful advice about how to handle that sort of situation because anyone that has been a boss, has had employees that would not listen. Lots of men have also had to deal with men resorting to or threatening physical violence because they told their employee to do their job or don't come back tomorrow. I can also say with certainty, that when I had a male foreman on a job instead of myself, they could say the same things, act the same way as me, and not have the same issues. I would have loved to have other women that were in the same position as myself to speak with.
I've heard these words before, "I want to speak with a man." If you are a person of color, maybe you have heard or had it insinuated, "I want to speak with a white person." Or maybe when you were young, you heard, "I want to speak with someone with more experience." Similar yes, but the same, no. Many people can think back to a time when they were dismissed not because they lacked qualification but because of something they cannot change, and that is what makes most people have something to contribute to many conversations. I do not know what it is like to be a person of color, I can imagine by pulling on experiences where I have felt out of place or discriminated against because of my gender, but that is all I can do. To want space, to discuss how experiences differ from the "norm," and the "norm" mostly listens instead of interjecting their advice just seems, civil.
Ack! I lost my train of thought and started rambling.
My point is, there should be something like ~girltalk (not a fan of that name btw). And just not women things, I can see there being a place for ~minoritytalk, or ~mentalk. Mostly because sometimes people just need a place to go to discuss their stuff.
At the end of the day, I am not a big contributor. But there was something about your "What are those cases exactly and how do you think a "male stance" would differ from a female one?" that almost felt disingenuous. I've seen you around in plenty of other posts, so I'm pretty certain it was not disingenuous.
I would like to direct your attention to your words here:
You basically said that that when women get together it is unsafe and toxic... because we don't have an open mind?
Honestly I am not sure if your comment, especially the last part, is based on a misinterpretation or if you intentionally put words in my mouth and reply to them. But I'll hope you were not disingenuous and this is a misunderstanding, and reply to you.
That is an honest question. I don't say that there might be no difference, but if we're trying to argue for something here, we need to be clear; in this case, how different really the stance is and how much of that is based on the sex and gender of the persons. And how is that relevant here.
In the comments that I read, including yours, there simply is not a reason good enough to have a gender segragated group here. And most of these comments just skip the fact that this community is not toxic or unsafe for topics that they cite require a specific subreddit on Reddit. Tildes is readily as safe and open as it gets, a space like ~girltalk (or whatever the name be) simply can not be more safe or more open-minded.
Not at all. That is not a correct reading of what I said, which is quite obvious if you read all the words in the part that you quoted. If I remix it a little bit: Go among women that are not looking at things progressively and with an open mind, and it'll be as toxic and unsafe as a male-only college dormitory.
I really hope you won't tell me the age old "women are inherently (more) open-minded and progressive" thing which I hear from some self-described feminists. There are open-minded and progressive women, and there are those that are not: the latter when they come together form an environment that is not more or less toxic and unsafe than similar men.
My general argument is that it won't be a safe space if the criterion is female-only or female-dominated; it'll only be a safe space if it's dominated by open mindedness, progressiveness, acceptance, love, reason and hope. That stuff don't have gender.
My worry is that the existence of gender-, sex- or ethnicity-specific spaces here will codify the rest of the space as beloging to the privileged.
My gut reaction when I encounter gender segregation is that "this is utterly primitive".
My demand is that we don't resort to such a primitive solution unless we really need to. But we don't need to, and if we really needed to, it would've meant that the project of Tildes itself had failed.
You could make many of the exact same arguments you have made here against ~girltalk as you could against the ~lgbt group, and yet the fact that group exists is not a sign that Tildes has failed in any way or that Tildes users are trapped in some backwards and segregated way of thinking... it's the opposite in fact. Part of the purpose of those groups is provide those particular demographics, that have often faced tremendous and sometimes highly targeted toxicity and discrimination elsewhere on the net, a place to call their own without needing to worry about facing that same problem here. And they also act as a giant "Your presence is welcome here" sign for those demographics on top of that, which is also incredibly beneficial to the community overall as it helps broaden the demographics here, which when it comes to many social media sites is completely dominated by white cis males.
No, and I've said why I think that way elsewhere in this thread. Basically, LGBTQ+ is not purely a gender/sex/sexuality thing, and ~lgbt is not an LGBT-dominated safe space that limits what people can do there based on who they are. It is a space where everyone is equal and equally welcome as long as they talk on the specific and rather unique issues (mostly political, it seems) that LGBTQ+ individuals and communities face.
~lgbt absolutely is a bit of a safe space that somewhat limits what people can do, say and how they can act there based on who they are. Cis gender straight people are certainly welcome in ~lgbt, but they have to go into that group with the knowledge that the community there is not for them, and so their opinions are not necessarily going to be as valuable or valued.
E.g. If someone who is struggling with coming out is asking for advice, straight people are certainly welcome to provide their input, but given they likely don't have first-hand experience with the process they should at the very least let people know they are straight so their opinion can be judged with a healthy grain of salt.
And ~girltalk would likely be no different. Men wouldn't be excluded from partaking in the community there, but they similarly have to realize that the group is not for them either. And having spaces for particular demographics where that is the case is not a failure or mistake on Tildes part either, IMO, as explained why in the previous comment.
I am really bored with this back and forth, with regards to your second paragraph I simply refuse that point, and I declared it before, maybe multiple times. If anything, it defies fields of study and practice like medicine or psychology. I also refuse the last sentence of your first paragraph; it is the individual readers who decide whether or not they value some comment or not, not you.
Apart from that, I won't rehash stuff I already said. Experience and knowledge are different. A rule like "if you are X, your comments regarding X stuff are more valuable than others'" is simply illogical; to prove it you can simply look at some alt-right women or ask some random men what does a prostate do. If that ever becomes a rule Tildes abides by, I'll be one of those who part ways with it.
I really want to leave this discussion here, I won't respond any further. We've said all we can, all that's left to do is to read what's already written neutrally and sincerely.
No, it is not illogical. It is the plain and simple truth.
I'm going to get a bit personal and direct here, to make a point. I avoided saying this before, but it needs saying now.
Your comments about renaming the ~lgbt group as "~gender" (especially saying that you would recognise a "~gender" group as being about LGBT-related issues) were misinformed, wrong, and almost insulting. And that's because you are not an LGBT person. You are an outsider to this group. You do not know what we think and feel and experience.
This is why non-X people should be careful about their comments regarding X-stuff: because they are outsiders and do not have the lived experience of X-ness to inform their opinions. Being gay is different to being straight. I have a different lived experience to you because of that. Similarly, being a woman is different to being a man, and women have different lived experiences to you (and me!).
Imagine if I, a non-Turk, started talking about how life is a Turkish person, and what Turkish people want and need? Would my perspective be valid in your eyes?
Straight men do not get to speak for everyone: not gay men, and not women. You need to listen to people who are not like you.
Well, we'll have to agree to disagree here. I draw a big fat line between experience and knowledge. I don't say experience is worthless, but while what you say does often hold for experience, that's not really the case for objective knowledge.
I don't think we'll change each other's minds here, and we're going off-topic anyways.
That is not something I said nor support.
No, but it's something you're doing. I appreciate that you're acting out of good intentions, but you are being a straight man who is telling LGBT people and women what they want and what they should have.
No, I'm only defending my point, and only speaking for myself. I'm not telling people to do or want anything. Also, I'm definitely in the minority here, people do want the group and I do hope we get it; I won't hesitate to participate in there along the lines the community decides. That I believe it causes these risks and there are these logical problems are only one side of a discourse; a recommendation maybe, a (possibly also mistaken) statement of some facts, but not telling anyone what to do or want.
I'd hope we'd be able to separate a discussion on means to achieve a thing and on some logical matters get stuck in who is who. But that did not happen. Well, shoot. I'm more than done with this already.
Fair enough, I will respect that even though I still fundamentally disagree with pretty much everything you have said. ;)
How is this effectively different from posting "on the specific and rather unique issues (mostly political, it seems) that women individually and collectively face" on various groups we already have or will gain and discussing accordingly? We'd then have the entirety of Tildes be ~girltalk, isn't that better?
Thank you for replying!
Currently, we still live in a world where minorities are often not safe. I posit that it is the responsibility of the majority to signal that their spaces are safe for all until we, as a society, no longer need to do so. Until then, portions of underrepresented people will feel reluctant to participate in spaces they have historically been excluded from or made to feel unsafe in. Whether or not that is done here with groups or not, I do not know. I gave an example of a time I would have liked to have had a designated women's space.
That's a good point. I don't know that having those spaces would do that, but again I do not know.
I would like to apologize for the way I butchered your quote in my first response. It truly was an error where I inputted my words into your quote. I meant to post your quote and let you know how I took it. Thank you for clarifying what you meant. I think what you are saying is that groups who are not progressive and do not have an open mind will be toxic. However, I am not sure how that applies to this topic since all groups are bound by site-wide rules of conduct.
WRT the first point, well, that is something desirable, but IDK how much compatible such a responsibility is with the real world: it is often the minority's job to get the majority to behave. That is not something I condone; but we can only affect real world via taking it as it is and acting on it with that knowledge: I am an economically-challenged Turkish guy that wants to become an academic. I am a minority in my home country because I am a highly-progressive irreligious person that does not accept the national dogma and the baggage of tradition. I am a minority in the world I desire to be in because it's actually dominated by white males of middle-class and upper origins. So I am no alien to oppression or to being part of a minority. In this context, I don't think ascribing responsibilities to people who can simply ignore them will be of help: the way out is simply destroying the privilege.
In context of Tildes and this discussion, as I said before, I don't think this community signals anything negative towards women except being male-majority. If apart from that we are failing at signalling positive stuff to women, then I'm open to solutions (and am not the one to decide anyways), but I don't thing this approach (i.e. something like ~girltalk) will work; I've said why in other comments.
For the second part, first of all I'm glad that we came to understand each other. Admittedly, the argument there was going a bit off topic: I was trying to argue against the notion that "those who're from a group X necessarily know and handle questions regarding X better than non-X people": both men and women can fail at knowing what's better for people of their own gender, and both men and women can fail at creating welcoming and safe spaces. There is a subjective side to this: I've always felt safer in a promiscuous group than a group of either sex or of any gender, and I've observed that promiscuous communities are generally more productive, civil and positive.
Oh wow, I thought we were farther (or is that further?) apart than we actually are!
I reject the notion that it is the minority's responsibility to make the majority behave, at least in a "civilized" society. We agree on that point. But I will go further and also reject that we have to take it as it is.
What if I told you, I needed ~girltalk for reasons you can't understand. What if I said, "I am female, and I would feel like I could safely speak in all spaces if their was also a female space." Would you trust me?
What if I said, "I am female, and I do not need a female space to contribute." Would you use that to bolster you defense?
You are right. There is nothing obvious that signals negative towards women. But maybe there are subtleties about male discourse that differs from female discourse. And those subtleties may make an environment where women feel less inclined to contribute.
I don't know what the answer is either. But I am not not willing to discount some sort of ~girltalk as a partial solution.
This being a shared space, we have to convince each other. I'd not really be a fan of "reasons [I] can't understand" b/c it's rather patronising, but I'd sympathise with "I feel I need ~girltalk to express myself". Nevertheless, I feel obliged to present what I believe to be true, out of responsibility---if I say I'm convinced when I'm not, isn't that dishonest? The community gets to decide in the end, and if it decides in favour of something like ~girltalk (and it apparently does) and we get the group, I immediately scrap my point against it and observe how it goes, and as I said elsewhere, probably try to contribute positively to it. If my fears come true, that's sad; if I'm proven wrong and we end up with a generally more diverse community, I simply admit to it and enjoy all the fun. I'm generally not really attached to ideas: proven wrong, scrap it.
The example I gave about movies is an indicator of how it happens. Having direct experience in some areas just changes the tone and content of discussions.
But are you more informed than women who actively participate in a woman's discussion group that raises these issues? The very fact of having a woman's space tends to educate and inform the women in it. Lots of girls I know first learned about things like IUDs from subreddits on the subject.
I support and would use this. ~talk.women makes more sense to me, but it would be a useful addition no matter where it lands.
EDIT: After thinking about this some more, I prefer it as a top level group as in the proposal.
I'm on board with this. I think the voices of women are underrepresented here on Tildes and think that's an important area for growth. It's important to consider what we're missing out on when their perspectives are limited or absent from our conversations.
That said, I have an honest question for women-identifying users: Is the presence of a women-only space affirming or patronizing (or neither or both)?
I definitely understand the argument of having your own space and I understand the importance of having a structural signal of welcomeness (hence my support of ~lgbt), but I can also see the argument that making a ~girltalk space can feel belittling or can unintentionally "box in" users, almost conveying the idea that the rest of the site is male and you only have your own little corner that we've carved out for you. Thoughts?
That's a valid concern, and it's hard to say which way it will go until we give it a try. But I see this as basically the inverse of the "If Reddit bans /r/fatpeoplehate then the jerkholes will scatter throughout the rest of the site" argument. It didn't really pan out and, in fact, the rest of Reddit become less awful as a result. The REAL jerkholes went to voat or whatever, but most Redditors just stopped indulging in the parts of themselves that got tickled by participating in that sort of community. The presence of the subreddit created a sort of "organizing base" for advancing a culture of being shitty to people for how they look. Once that organizing base was gone, it suddenly became a less salient point of engagement.
Flipping it around, I don't think women will feel isolated having a "women's issues" subreddit. It will just create a space for their views to find expression in a way that might have been drowned out otherwise.
As a man, I tried to stay out of this because it won't really be a space for me (and I wouldn't subscribe), but I can't see how ~girltalk would be a negative.
I'm part of a discord for a podcast that has a channel jokingly named "Three Female Listeners", targeted at women, non-binary, and genderfluid users. They've also got a rule that "men are not allowed to talk or look in the channel (men have everywhere else)." It's a more active room in the discord, and based on the pronouns I see, men do a good job of staying quiet. Maybe that rule doesn't need to be in force here, but I don't think it's bad.
I am a fan of the idea, and also like the idea that something can exist on this site that's not for me (or for everyone), so a different group can have a better and safer space for, well, "for women to discuss womanly things" (as the top level comment puts).
That sounds like the opposite of what I'd want for Tildes. Just the name, "three female listeners", makes me think that women are very underrepresented on that discord. Three is such a small number, why not just "female listeners"? Ideally, on Tildes, we'd have as many women as men.
The rule is also absurd. Who says men can't have valid things to say about women's issues? And the addendum "men have everywhere else" implies that women don't have everywhere else. On Tildes, I want women and men to share the space equally.
Yeah, oof—I guess what I failed to really get across that "Three Female Listeners" is a relevant joke for listeners of the podcast, but is absolutely an accepted name. But I definitely did say it's an active room in the discord, with far more than three users, so the take that it
makes me think that women are very underrepresented on that discordisn't the conclusion that you should have drawn from my comment. (And no, I wasn't saying that ~girltalk should be named that.)
And, maybe that rule is heavy-handed—all I was trying to say is I understand the sentiment, and I don't think think the idea is absurd. I was merely pointing out a situation that works where the community embraces it. A hard rule like that is probably not right for Tildes. (And, if you missed the humor—because that seems to be what motivated your comment—the "men have everywhere else", the room name, and most of the way everything else is phrased is a tongue-in-cheek joke. People get it, and it works.)
In spite of that, I also think that ~GirlTalk wouldn't be for me to speak up on women's issues—I don't think I'd be able to contribute such a nuanced opinion. After all, the group was proposed as
a communal space for women to discuss womanly things, and not a a blanket "let's post all the feminist topics here so everyone can speak up", and my comment was a supportive example that hey, this can work.
A little late to the party but I strongly support a girl focused group, especially as a top level group.
At the same time, I would imagine that it would be best to hold off on any sort of guy focused groups until there is better gender representation on Tildes.
I could just be plain wrong, but I think there is a dangerous chance that guy focused groups might have the opposite intended affect of a top level, girl focused group. I wouldn't want to see us shoot ourselves in the foot by delivering both groups at the same time.
Finally, regardless of what anyone's opinion is on a guy focused group, I think anyone who supports the idea of a girl focused group can understand that it's much more important to have one of those soon than it is to have both guy focused and girl focused groups.
Basically, fairness be damned. I want representation figures up up up.
But yeah, I totally like this idea and would definitely post content there in order to get it off the ground.
I think this is a good idea. I would probably not subscribe nor post, being not the target demographic, though I may occasionally go through and read or comment, as I do with ~lgbt.
Same. Even though I'm male, when I was on reddit I would spend a lot of time on /r/twox and /r/girlgamers. Some of it was because I enjoyed getting an outside perspective, and some of it was that I found that women-oriented subreddits had considerably less homophobia (particularly /r/girlgamers as compared to other gaming subs).
I think this is a good idea too although I think it would be better suited as a subgroup unless it is itself likely to host a great deal of its own subgroups in the near future in which case a top level group might be better. Depends really.
I don't want to aim this at any particular proposals, but just a general comment: try not to get too stuck on using the groups as "categorization for categorization's sake". There's already a categorization system with a ton of flexibility: tags (which could definitely be taken advantage of in much better ways than are currently available, but that's separate).
It's more important to think about whether a new group devoted to a certain subject will help accomplish something in particular, not just out of wanting to create "the correct place" for that subject to be posted.
I know it's tempting to get into lengthy debates about how to set up the hierarchy correctly, but it's really not worth worrying too much about. Sites like reddit and Hacker News do mostly fine at supporting many large discussions on different topics but have extremely limited categorization (in different ways). We can build it and adjust as necessary.
I'm afraid I don't quite get what you're trying to say here.
Mostly just that the structure of the hierarchy is one of those topics that everyone loves to debate about endlessly, because it's easy to look for issues with specific organization approaches, quibble about whether a particular name really covers everything, and so on. But right now we have literally one sub-group (that nobody except me can even post in), and none of the groups on the site are overwhelmingly active yet. We don't need to worry about the details of how to split everything up yet.
If using tags in existing groups gets us almost all of the way there, that's probably a better approach for now than over-complicating things with an elaborate group hierarchy before the activity level really warrants it.
If I'm reading this right, that means all my suggestions for sub-groups based on the use of tags in existing groups are redundant. Yes? No?
No, not necessarily. I just don't want to go too far with it, there's a balance.
Like, if you were talking about a tabletop simulator, you could use
~games.tabletopand tag it
PC. Tags create something similar to a pivot table, in a sense.
very few people seem to have touched on this, which is literally the only reason i'm making a comment here, but it seems pretty intuitive to me that we should be creating ~news.usa (and maybe, as a corollary, ~news.usa.politics since that's a particular part of why ~news.usa would exist) at this point.
if i literally must, here are just a few of the topics which demonstrate that. a broader overview does a better job, though: of the 50 topics on the first page of news at this exact moment that i write this comment, at least 30 are tagged with
usa. usa-based news dominates ~news most of the time, and even when it does not it's far and away the most common location in ~news, so it seems pretty reasonable--arguably necessary--to split it off into its own thing now.
the fail state is obviously just moving it all back into news, but i really do not foresee that as a problem, for obvious reasons--and, like i said, there's a case to be made that ~news.usa.politics should also be created under it since we have a lot of political news driving the domination of american news in the section.
Wouldn't this be rather discouraging to a newcomer from a different country: you come to news, and it's ~news plus only ~news.usa. You might end up thinking, oh, this is yet another USA/Anglophone+white centric place here. As a long time user, even I'd have that kind of impression.
Countries come and go. I think tags are the best thing to use here. And if we'll do one country, we better do all so that nobody feels left out.
it's already extremely white and anglophone-centric and the crux of this website's function is we segment off subgroups on an as-needed basis, so i mean... color me skeptical that this is suddenly going to deter people any more than the overwhelmingly anglophonic focus of a website that explicitly says it's mostly going to be an anglophone space would.
I think there's a very real effect that the place existing at all, lends itself to attract more people from that targeted demographic. But tbh it's too early to split ~news imo. I wouldn't like to see the usual reddit bickering "but this news concerns both those countries so shouldn't it be there" etc.
The first split should probably be ~news.usa and ~news.eu, with the rest staying in ~news. And I still think it's too early for that anyway.
i don't think that's particularly true, because ~lgbt--our token "group of people specific" section currently--is one of the smallest sections on this website and tildes's lgbt community has, if anything, probably shrunk in recent months instead of increasing in size with the website. moreover, i'm pretty sure the very nature of tildes recruitment--taking most of its users from reddit and hacker news--does more to make this place white, male, and anglophone-dominated than any section existing or not existing ever will.
FWIW I wouldn’t invite people of a niche group here if there is no space for them to talk about their thing. I wouldn’t invite Indian people to talk about Indian culture, for instance, because I don’t think they’d get anything out of being here that they can’t get better elsewhere.
There is something to the “if you build it, they will come” idea. This was part of my thinking with the design and girltalk subgroups as a way to diversify the user base. It’s creates cells for other groups to cluster around.
oh no, i am a strong proponent of the "let's actually have minority spaces on this website idea" because this website severely lacks a lot of minority perspectives it'd benefit from, but i'm also not really sold on the idea that the majority of people who those spaces would appeal to come here or don't come here specifically because those minority spaces exist or don't exist. i think it helps to have those spaces, but we also probably need a community that actually uses those spaces to begin with, or else those spaces will probably just become minstrel shows.
It’s a chicken and egg problem for sure, but I do know that one of the reasons I haven’t invited many people I know is specifically because we don’t discuss a lot of stuff that’s pertinent to them. I know, for example, that my wife would probably get on here if there was a space for her to talk about women’s issues. And the design group would prompt me to invite some designers I know.
Has it? I don't have the numbers, but a mere "probably" doesn't convince me. I'd be surprised in raw numbers, although I wouldn't be surprised in percentages.
But yes, I don't mean to say the presence of the group is enough, which is why I'm currently against splitting ~news. You need multiple things, including a critical mass of people who initially want the group to exist / could make use of it.
My experience is as such with several large Discord servers I've administered: Starting with a single #general channel, the discord can have hundreds/thousands of members but be nearly inactive. Then you create a couple more specific/focused channels and people have something to talk about; suddenly there's a lot more activity than before, which increases activity in #general as well as you have users more regularly checking that particular server.
There's a balance to strike of course but I try to systematically grow servers in number of channels as they grow in size. And any channel that's too inactive gets archived.
we don't really have raw numbers other than the last survey so authoritative statements just aren't possible, but broadly speaking the number of openly lgbt people on here has definitely seemed to drop, and given that the website has in the mean time grown, it's not really unreasonable to conclude then that the percentage (which, owing to non-random sampling would likely be an overstatement of the lgbt population on here) has most likely gone down accordingly since reddit and HN probably both skew straight and male.
i'm really struggling to see why there wouldn't be a critical mass here, though, given that american news is overwhelming in ~news already and americans are most likely a solid plurality at worst on here, if not an outright majority. check out how many things get tagged with usa on a given day--it's a decent portion of the daily submissions to this website, and at times the volume of
usaposts seems to be than basically all other world news combined.
Where it says that? I used anglophone to refer to anglophone countries, not the language used here.
Apart from that, if we assume a sole ~news.usa would reinforce a Western White image, and we assume that such image is already prominent, that situation should not be an excuse for the acceptance of the former: even if having only a generic ~news would only be a small indicator of an ideal of more diversity of users and content, it's still worth displaying that. I'd go as far as to suggest that we could make use of some affirmative action against USA (e.g. "never assume a USA-only audience", "don't assume USA is implied when no country is specified").
the docs pretty clearly say that tildes is in the immediate and foreseeable future term a majority english space and accordingly, the website itself recruits english (and ESL) speakers and does so from majority english and ESL-dominated websites. ultimately, that means it will predominantly--and inevitably--be a mostly anglophone country site, and you can't really separate the two just because you draw a distinction between anglophones as english speakers and the anglophone countries. one will pretty much inevitably beget the other by the nature of demography.
see the above. tildes is probably always going to be a white, western majority place because of who it recruits and where it recruits from, and like i said before i kinda don't buy that having or not having a place impacts the perception or nature of this site more than who it actually recruits to be on it and from where. accordingly, i just don't see any of that as a reason to not have ~news.usa.
I'd suggest a few others along with that:
I think that ~news.europe and possibly ~news.uk (or maybe ~news.britain, as a political backstop!) would be less unwieldy. Also, I think most Europeans associate their identity more to 'Europe' in a geographical sense than a political one - after all, the Swiss and the Norwegians are undoubtably Europeans as much as the Swedes and the Belgians are.
I like this idea. Could also get ~news.world or ~news.country when others get big enough to take off.
a dedicated world news section strikes me as unnecessary, because that's basically what ~news is supposed to serve the function of already (and does, although because we're majority anglophone it reflects predominantly anglophone news accordingly).
Oh, true! I hadn't thought about that.
Strongly agree. As far as I'm aware, you cannot filter out tags. But I can unsubscribe from a certain group. Removing US news from my feed is something I'll probably want to do if the volume gets much bigger.
Sure you can.
Ah, hadn't found that yet. Thanks!
Proposed group: Finance
Failure Plan: Move all topics to News with a tag of Finance
Success Plan: Add in sub-groups for Economics, Personal Finance, Investing, Trading, Careers, etc...
Yeah, both ~finance and/or ~business are definitely groups I feel we are missing at the top level.
Edit: didn't even finish reading the comment and literally wrote partly the same.
I'd be interested in it.
I'm surprised this hasn't already been suggested, and I've been deliberately holding back so I don't steal someone else's thunder, but... we should have a group for space exploration.
This keeps coming up, including this thread by @sqew a few days ago. People would be interested in a group focussed on exploring space.
This would cover things like:
Private companies building space-going rockets.
Government space agencies (NASA, ESA, CNSA, ISRO) conducting exploration missions across our solar system.
Satellites being used for scientific or industrial purposes.
Colonising the Moon and Mars.
Basically, it would look at anything which involves putting machines or humans outside the Earth's atmosphere. (Discussions about the sciences of astronomy and astrophysics and cosmology and planetology would remain in ~science.)
We need ~space.
Presumably you'd also include spaceflight politics in ~space. For example, https://spacenews.com articles.
I support this too. There's been quite a lot of space news/talk/planning/thinking/congregating popping up recently and it's definitely not just because of the 50th anniversary of the moon landing! (although that's no doubt contributed some)
Definitely support this one! :)
I figured you would! :P
I would use this group
I think there's more than enough traffic in ~tech to warrant splitting out some sub-groups there:
~tech.socialmedia for all the posts about social media, such as Facebook, Reddit, Twitter, YouTube, and so on.
~tech.internet for all the posts about the internet.
~tech.phones (or ~tech.smartphones) for all the posts about phones and smartphones.
The failure plan would be to roll them all back into ~tech.
I might suggest ~tech.policy as well to capture articles having to do with tech policy, including privacy concerns, encryption, regulation, trustbusting, etc. This might be better as ~news.tech though.
I'm fairly certain that at some point @Deimos said it would be possible to have multiple names go to the same the group. So there could be both ~tech.news (or policy) and ~news.tech that are the same group.
While mobile phones and internet based saas apps are huge, the traditional way to break out tech is into hardware/software
I definitely support a social media–dedicated group as I suggested four months ago. I would also consider making it top-level as posts currently tagged
social mediaare quite scattered across several top-level groups:
though ~tech seems to be the most common placement.
~creative currently has an awkward dual role as the place for original content / self-promotion as well as the place for artsy things which don't have their own group like poetry, scrapbooking, and theater. It then seems worthwhile to split this in two, leaving ~creative to hold the original content and ~arts to handle the misc. artistic works. This makes ~creative infinitely less confusing and solves the problem of feeling like you're drowning out an entirely different class of content by posting one kind. That anxiety is even more worth avoiding in the case of original content, as users are naturally going to be more self-conscious or sensitive with that kind of thing when it comes to putting their art out there.
Art installation aims to show unity by building pink seesaws across the US-Mexico border
The runner who makes elaborate artwork with his feet and a map
Monolithic concrete forms associated with brutalist architecture inspired the interiors of Axel Arigato's Copenhagen flagship store
Failure Plan: Merge back into ~creative.
I'll support this. I'd like an ~arts group where I can read about theatre (a minor interest of mine), without having to wade through original poetry and photography.
Note that this could also work the opposite way. I have no preference myself, but it should be mentioned that this could just as easily work so ~creative is misc art place and ~selfpromotion or ~originalcontent or something of that sort is made to take over the other purpose of that group.
Couldn't we then rename ~creative to ~art or ~arts and have ~arts.creative as a subgroup? In the historical sense of the word 'art', DIY stuff and hobby projects are relevant in that latter one, too.
A distinct ~creative and ~selfpromotion / ~originalcontent would be rather confusing IMHO. A toplevel ~creative is kinda too vague: create what, exactly? Do I put my or someone else's code there? No, it goes to ~comp; but yet it is totally creative. We could even use the distinction of ~art.creative / ~art.original & ~hobbies.creative / ~hobbies.original: DIY stuff or other less artsy stuff goes to the latter, and paintings writing photos videos etc. go to the former.
I like an original corner (which may well be subdivided in the future) which is separated off. Right now that's because adding a
.creativegroup below any which could have OC would lead to a lot of slow groups and in the future would lead to the same problems in the parent group.
Idk, I'm more likely to think "Hmm what are some things Tildes users have made...oh wow, a movie!" than I am to think "Hmm let's read some stuff about movies...wow, one made by a Tildes user!" Beyond that, I might be interesting in seeing a quilt a Tildes user made, but I won't want general articles about quilting. Both solutions could solve this problem, but the top-level OC group simplifies the process (only sub to one group!) and doesn't add a million groups all over the place.
Oh, and any name for a misc art group is going to be vague. No matter what we call it, you have to know the existing groups and understand this is where artsy things which don't fit in those go. Really I think ~miscart, ~art, ~creative, ~thearts, and ~arts all have this problem about equally.
I would definitely love to see this group as well. However, do you think going a bit further and calling the new group ~thearts, rather than just ~arts would make the distinction between it and ~creative even clearer? The arts definitely has a more formal feel to it, to me.
This one's a bit tentative, but is it worth adding some sub-groups to ~life? It seems there might be enough posts about parenting and work/working to justify sub-groups for ~life.parenting and ~life.working.
What do people think?
Parenting! I'll be a first-time father in a month or two, so I can imagine:
As a guardian over a puppy, the Puppy101 subreddit was invaluable to my mental health. It's nice to just read about other people going through what you are. Simply having it acknowledged that whatever feelings you're having are perfectly normal goes a long way.
I can only imagine this is more intense with parenting.
I'm on the exact same boat and would love to discuss my utter and total confusion with others.
Some of the topics I personally will enjoy are:
Thanks! You too :).
As to your first two points: I'm almost through *The Book You Wish Your Parents Had Read (and Your Children Will Be Glad That You Did) by Philippa Perry. I like it. Very light on the small scale practical tips, much more about how to nurture a healthy and full relationship with your kid(s). Her RSA talk about the book is on YouTube.
Sleep training is also on the list for trying, potentially, here.
Plus, perhaps, relating to/dealing with your pregnant/just gave birth/tired from breastfeeding partner, I can imagine...
I'm down. I think subgroups like ~life.relationships or ~life.dating might end up being pretty active.
I would like to propose ~tech.apple.
This would just be an all-in-one catch-all group for anything Apple: discussion and news about the company and its products. There's enough Apple news generated to support multiple profitable Apple centric sites. (Yes, even though some of it can be blog spam at times.) The Apple tag gets a decent amount of use on this site so post examples should be implicit, but what's worth observing is that not all of the posts land immediately in tech, for example, this one in health and this one in misc.
Even though I'm the one nominating, I'd also like to highlight one potential issue which may warrant further discussion: Apple produced tv and movies. I think meta discussion about Apple's services should fall by default into this hypothetical group, but discussions about the content itself should land in ~tv or ~movies as appropriate. Thoughts?
Failure plan: merge these posts back into ~tech. (I'm proposing a sub group anyway.)
Edit: a further thought. Posts in an Apple group would be Apple scoped, allowing for discussions where "the room" should basically understand the ecosystem. To rehash a previous comment of mine: this will allow a more nuanced discussion on some Apple-related topic, and we will really not have to care about the latest Tizen or Gear OS or what have you, unless it presents a super compelling perspective for the given conversation.
I would post to this.
I will point out, though, that this opens to door to all kinds of platform specific zones. So you'd also want ~tech.android, ~games.Playstation, ~games.Nintendo, etc. It can end up being a real Pandora's box. But I'd say it's probably still good on balance since plenty of people complain any time WWDC comes around that all tech sites are inundated with Apple-related news.
All those subgroups honestly sound fine to me. There is android-specific tech news, and games specific to nintendo which non-nintendo users might not be interested in. Look at reddit: there are /r/nintendo, /r/android, /r/ps4...
But adding one subgroup in a potentially infinite list of other same-level subgroups doesn't need to be a problem, right? Only add the ones that have a significant group of people interested and/or people that want to specifically filter it out to just follow the misc stuff left in the broader category.
My concern wasn't actually a proliferation of subgroups so much as brigading/platform warring between subgroups. When you have a cloistered community it starts to create in-groups/out-groups, so it's worth thinking about how we want those groups to form in ways that don't get flame-wars/brigading.
I would participate in this.
A few scattered thoughts after reading some replies already:
TLDR, support in descending order of priority for ~space, ~girltalk + ~guytalk, ~trivia, ~games.digital + ~games.tabletop split, ~language, ~math
Edit: Would also probably support a ~finance group (thinking both stock market talk and /r/personalfinance style group)
Not yet. There's no group for the social sciences.
What from the list isn't covered?
Oh. I wasn't referring to that list. I was referring to this list. I don't know what a "vital article" is or how Wikipedia's editors came up with those classifications. But there's a gap in Tildes - and there seems to be a similar gap in Wikipedia, based on that list of "vital articles".
All the info on how is on Wikipedia if you're curious to find out. The way I see it, it's a good measure of what are some of the most important topics to cover, while being restrained to a top 10 so you don't go too broad. It's not the end all be all of anything.
Although now I look at it again, ~history doesn't exist. I uh… yeah, that should exist.
I agree. :)
Group proposed: Autosports/Motorsports/cars/autos - I think there is just enough people here that are interested in motorsports, cars, motorcycles, racing, all of that. I'm not sure what a good group name would be. Something that could be all encompassing, I feel like motorsports could work.
Yeah, automotive stuff is weird, because it could fit under ~hobbies.automotive for stuff like DIY mechanics, ~news.automotive for articles about the auto industry, ~sports.automotive for motorsports.
I think it could be argued that an interest in any of these automotive related things could be classified as a hobby and we could just post motorsports discussion, auto news, and DIY stuff under a ~hobbies.automotive, but I also think just having a top level ~automotive would be a cleaner way to go about it.
So that's my proposal: ~hobbies.automotive or ~automotive (which I like more than ~cars or ~auto tbh).
Maybe in the future we could have separate automotive subgroups in ~news, ~sports, ~hobbies, but I think for now an automotive group would only be viable if it was a place for all the automotive content posted to Tildes.
Either way, I would totally post in whatever group(s) about this stuff get created. I've posted automotive topics in the past, wouldn't take much to do it again.
"Hobby" is such a catch-all group that I can imagine it becoming a bit vestigial as the site community grows. At some point it doesn't make sense to have fountain pen enthusiasts, gear heads, and hydroponic gardeners all sharing a group together. But for now we don't have enough people to sustain separate groups for all such niche interests.
Would this be a top-level group, such as ~motorsports? Or would it be a sub-group within ~sports, such as ~sports.motor?
Personally, I'm interested in the first (F1, Formula E), but not the second.
What about ~cars?
I'm just spit-balling, as the Americans say. Throwing ideas out to see what sticks.
( If I was being pedantic, I would point out that motorcycles don't fit into ~auto, either, not being automobiles. :P )
I would think it makes more sense as a sub-group under automotive, so ~auto.motorsports. That way you'd also have a home for general car-fan subgroups in the future outside of just racing, like ~auto.4x4 or ~auto.motorcycles.
Failure plan would probably be to shift it to ~hobbies.
I would post here, but this is going to be confusing in the scope of Tesla-like vehicles. Do posts about the Model S/3/X/etc. land in ~autos, or in ~tech? Could it depend?
I would certainly post in ~motorsports. I would love to connect with other enthusiasts here on Tildes.
Commenting on live races, discussing results, rumours, technical stuff, etc..
Covering a wide range of topics from personal finance to entrepreneurship to economics.
Some examples could be the earnings of a large corporation, the IMF's economic outlook for Latin America, and personal finance questions like, well, basically r/personalfinance
For discussing and debating politics/geopolitics in a friendly way and with a focus on facts.
Everything could probably be merged back into a related group. Healthcare posts could go to ~health, for example. Anything else would return to ~misc.
Alright, the only thing happening in here is extremely tangential bickering now, so I think it's past time to shut this one down. I'll go through all the suggestions soon and aim to add some new groups early next week.
I agree with this. I would continue to post in this sub-group.
In fact, we could also create ~humanities.history, while we're separating sub-groups in ~humanities.
I would ask for ~humanities.language and ~humanities.philosophy as well, but I don't think there's enough traffic for those. So just ~humanities.history alongside ~humanites.religion.
~humanities.history is absolutely my most desired sub-group at the moment. Well that and the subsequent ~humanities.history.military, but I know something that specific/niche will probably have to wait until much later when we have way more traffic to justify its existence. :P
It's definitely in my Top 5! It's been one of my goals since I first requested ~humanities a year ago.
I'd love to eventually see a top-level ~history group, but in the meantime ~humanities.history would be great.
Agreed. But it ain't gonna happen any time soon. Hence ~humanities - and, hopefully, ~humanities.history. We're getting there with baby steps.
I am also interested in ~humanities.history
Would love to post to all of these, but also take the reservations I have about a social science group and double them.
Have you seen any of this undesirable behaviour in ~humanities in the year since it was created? It already contains a lot of history-related posts. Has there been undesirable discussion there?
I would like to read from this.
I would post to this for sure.
~comp.linux (edit: ~comp.unix would be a better fit as per @hungariantoast's comment) would be a cool one to have for discussions about linux and asking the community for opinions. Eventually each distro would have a subgroup under it.
least favourite window manager
Debian 10 buster release
Friendly Linux chat
There already seems to be enough discussion for it to warrant a subgroup, and if it fails, just move all the topics under ~comp again!
Edit2: what about splitting ~creative into ~creative.writing and ~creative.visual ? Just an afterthought I had.
Yeah, I'd totally participate in this. Most of the topics I post go into ~comp anyways (I think).
As for the name of the group though, what about ~comp.unix instead? Like @emdash said, ~comp.linux seems kind of limiting, but I think ~comp.foss would be a different group than what ~comp.linux or ~comp.unix would be.
So like, ~comp.unix would be about stuff for "Unix based" operating systems: Linux, macOS, BSDs, Plan 9, MINIX, Illumos, ReactOS, Redox, Inferno, Haiku, etc. ~comp.foss just strikes me as a group specifically about free and open source software, rather than operating systems and computing environments (which might not be free or open source).
I don't know, I just like ~comp.unix more, kind of for similar reasons as to why /r/unixporn is named the way it is, rather than /r/linuxporn.
Nit: plan9 is decidedly not unix.
Meh, the Wikipedia page for Plan 9 says:
Because of that, and just the general reverence for the OS I've witnessed, I kind of assumed that it would be acceptable to readers of my comment to toss it into a list of "Unix based" operating systems.
That's why I put "Unix based" in quotes. I knew someone wouldn't be able to resist. I have edited the list of "Unix based" operating systems in my comment that I would find acceptable to read and discuss about with Tildes users to include even more inappropriate items.
Okay, jokes aside, seriously though, while I'll concede that Plan 9 "is decidedly not unix", I don't think people would mind if someone posted a topic showing off their Plan 9 rice (if it's even customizable?) or shared topics discussing why they like Plan 9, or other Plan 9 related content, in our theoretical ~comp.unix.
Like, what I'm trying to emphasize is, in case anyone who actually uses something based off Plan 9 is reading this, I would fucking love to see what content related to the OS and its programs you have to share and to discuss it.
Finally, maybe we should just downgrade the idea to ~comp.operating_systems or ~comp.os and degrade ourselves by accepting Windows content as well?
Then, since Linux/BSD/Unix content would still absolutely dominate ~comp.os, in another six months we can have another one of these group proposal rounds and finally get ~comp.os.unix?
Alright, I swear I'm done "taking the piss" and all that, sorry if this comes across as a little too cheeky, just trying to be humours.
We're getting deep into the meta-weeds, but: ~comp.os and ~tech.linux.
~comp is, as far as I understand it, the good parts of Hacker News crossed with the good ol' days of /r/programming when it was a default subreddit. So posts about Plan 9 would be on-topic there, as would lwn.net submissions about Linux internals, new NetBSD releases, and even Windows-ish topics if there were otherwise on-topic for ~comp (24-core CPU and I can’t type an email for example).
Meanwhile, ~tech.linux would be more along the lines of "Dell announces new line of laptops that come with Linux pre-installed" type topics. There's already demand for ~tech.apple and god help us maybe one day we'll have ~tech.windows to discuss all the latest Surface Pro models.
As far as posting "here's my riced Plan 9 desktop" screenshots...I don't think that would fit in either place, or really even anywhere on Tildes. An in-depth "how to install and customize Plan 9 for desktop use" guide certainly could be...but a single screenshot? Meh. Never say never, but a topic that's a link to a single image on Imgur or wherever should almost never be a good fit for Tildes (the main exception I can think of would be OC art in ~creative).
I don't think screenshots of riced out desktops would actually be that unfit for Tildes, but we would definitely have to hold those kinds of topics to a higher standard than they are on, say, /r/unixporn or /g/.
Like, if someone posts a topic where they share their setup with screenshots, but they also explain, in detail, how and why they've configured everything the way they did, then I think that would fit very well into the mold of what we might expect on Tildes.
Admittedly, I have a soft spot for /r/unixporn, so maybe I'm a bit biased, but I think topics that show off customizations, so long as they include actual details on the how and why of those setups, should have a place here, if for nothing else than that they are very informative.
(On a bit of a tangent, has it been settled yet whether we're okay with photos users have taken being posted to ~creative, or paintings users have painted being posted to ~creative? Because, if the community is okay with those things being posted to Tildes, then I would think it weird if we weren't okay with unixporn type content being posted here too, because they surprisingly have a lot in common, just for different crowds.)
Finally, there's only like, two places on the entire Internet that people can share and discuss their operating system configurations. One is on 4chan, the other is on Reddit. I'd really prefer if we didn't shoot ourselves in the foot by closing the door on that type of content just because it isn't as discussion focused as news about operating systems. I feel like there is real value to what this kind of content can provide.
Agreed, but given the potential of these posts to overwhelm the group, I propose to limit them to a weekly recurring week-end topic.
Indeed it is not... or at least I hope it's not, since I love those sorts of topics, E.g.
And I was even thinking about posting a new one myself, since I recently upgraded my own setup and wanted to
bragsee what other people's setups look like.
Ouuh I like what you guys discussed. ~comp.os would feel a little too broad for now. This is just my own observations, but the number of unix to Windows/other OS is currently very disproportional, be it linked articles or discussions. You're going for a top-down approach with creating sub-groups. I'd advocate the opposite: for now, since there's enough buzz around certain topics, give them their own groups. Everything else can be lumped under ~comp. When we reach a critical enough mass to warrant other groups, restructure what we have under a more general sub-group (~comp.os for example).
That said, the idea of having same subgroup names for different groups (~tech.linux and ~comp.os.linux / ~comp.os) might lead to some users confused as to where to post content, especially if it's nuanced. Who knows? Maybe a tech news article in ~tech.linux would generate enough discussion in the comments that it would be a good fit and relevant for the users in the ~comp.os camp for example. I think using appropriate tags and filters solves that issue for the most part.
There definitely seems like enough posts about Linux/FOSS that this group would be immediately successful. I'd probably containerize it as ~comp.foss however, as—at the risk of invoking the "let me interject" speech—Linux by itself seems kind of limiting.
Tho there is a big difference here: Linux is a part of a big network of projects that form a certain Unix-like environment; but FOSS is way bigger than that: not all FOSS run on Linux.
I'd say we don't need one, but if we end up getting one, I'd rather fancy ~comp.unixlike for the sake of a more precise terminology (cc @hungariantoast @FatherGlucose).
Man, I see some confusion over the groups mechanic in here. Let's clear that up a bit with where that discussion left off months back.
First up, ~this.group.name.is.pedantic.for.the.hierarchy and ~yougetanickname. Worry less about what the hierarchy looks like, feel free to keep that taxonomic and user-unfriendly as it needs to be. The nickname is the one for people to remember. If groups have multiple nicknames, those will go to disambiguation pages listing all of those groups just like wikipedia does. ~crypto for example could mean a lot of different groups (cryptocurrency, cryptography, etc).
Second, there's a tendency here to try to over-create groups, such as wanting a ~games.computer vs a ~games.tabletop, as if creating ~tabletop forces us to split the group's content into both analog and digital gaming. That's not how this should work at all. ~tabletop is created when it's deemed to be a good idea to do so, and that's it. All the other gaming still goes in ~games directly. Now, people have a choice. If they want to sub to ~tabletop and not to ~games they get the ~tabletop content. If people want both, they subscribe only to ~games itself and wait for the best ~tabletop content to bubble up from there into ~gaming. They only sub to ~tabletop itself if they want to participate in it and see every post rather than just the best posts.
If we try to divide everything up into micro-categories we're going to go crazy creating things that we aren't ready to seed yet. Let the real demand do the work. Groups can be moved around later if needed, so hierarchy juggling can happen later when more of that tree's 'nodes' are alive. The nicknames won't change when that happens, so people won't 'lose' the group. If we create ten gaming groups like ~games.leagueoflegends and ~games.rimworld those can be relocated under a ~games.digital that comes later. We may never get a ~games.digital to match tabletop, it could split into ~games.4x and ~games.mmo and ~games.fps and ~games.arcade. We won't know until the content guides us there.
Also, groups might exist at multiple places. ~music.metal.progressive and ~music.progressive.metal may both be the same community as ~progmetal, for example. That makes future classification a bit more flexible. This is never going to work out as a nice simple tree, so break out your graphs. ;)
To be clear though, those ideas aren't how it works now and haven't been implemented. A lot of them are good ideas and it's certainly possible that we'll have some or all of that someday, but it's not a sure thing.
I think the key thing to take away regardless are that there are tons of possibilities for how we can make it more convenient and deal with the weaknesses of using a hierarchy. It doesn't have to be a perfectly strict and consistent tree.
Yup, that was just where the mechanics discussions left off last time. I think the key is to keep it simple and flexible, resist the temptation to think too far ahead. This isn't usenet, it isn't reddit, and it isn't a library. It's something else that's probably going to be much scarier than those are someday. :P
I would have thought all sub categories would fall under the tagging system and categories were just a generalization of the content within. Then if a user wants to they can filter out or subscribe to a particular tag.
In other words, we're telling everyone who reads Tildes that "games" refers to computer games by default - except in one split-off sub-group for other types of games which don't fit into the default category. I don't like that. I think we should use the hierarchy to demonstrate that computer games and tabletop games are two separate but equal categories under the top-level category of games.
Alternatively, seeing as there's more traffic regarding computer games in ~games, we should make ~games.digital first, and leave ~games for all other games.
No, we should create the groups that people make proposals and show support for, period. If you want to pitch ~games.digital and people endorse it, go for it, I'm happy to see it.
What I'm not happy to see is 'let's create these five groups because we're creating this one.' I think that's going to lead to Imzy-like ghost towns.
I tend to agree. That's why I've suggested only a few sub-groups in ~tech, even though there are probably more that are on the borderline of having enough traffic to support them. Same with ~humanities, where I'd love to propose ~humanities.philosophy and ~humanities.language to give those subjects a bit more visibility, but we don't have enough traffic to support them.
But, there's more than enough traffic for both ~games.computer ( /video /digital /pixels /electronic /virtual /not_the_real_thing) and ~games.tabletop.
With that said, there is a case to be made for creating sub-groups (and groups) in order to provide visibility for a subject here on Tildes. Of course, it has to be a strong case, and not just "one person wants to see more ~sports.nude_tobogganning".
My only question is if we create ~games.digital and ~games.analog, what exactly goes in ~games? This does get a little weird. Ah well, we knew that when we were brainstorming this system. We just have to have a little faith that we'll manage it well going forward.
Posts about games of tag and hide'n'seek? Articles about the history of parlour games in Victorian England? Discussions about party games like charades and Pictionary? There are lots of games that are neither computer/video games nor tabletop/board games.
Also, in the long term, ~games should include the best of ~games.computer and ~games.tabletop, via the "bubble-up" functionality that you and others have suggested.
And... can we please drop the "analogue" terminology? I only mentioned this as a joke, inspired by a book I was reading (and have since abandoned). I've already edited my comment to make it clear I was never serious about this. The more that people have used it here, the more I've realised that I hate this terminology. I find it personally off-putting (it's basically defining tabletop games as "not digital games") and generally unhelpful (people don't think about their boardgames as "analogue gaming").
I kinda like the idea of classifying game groups by the type of game. 4x, strategy, sandbox, rpg, etc. I think most gamers glom onto genres like that.
You were talking about the difference between "STEM-types" and "normies". I think this is another symptom of that. ;)
Yeah, I'm guilty as hell of being in the STEM crowd. :D
Previous discussion of ~politics: https://tildes.net/~tildes.official/342/daily_tildes_discussion_proposals_for_trial_groups_round_1#comment-xm9
Right now political content (as judged by a
politicstag) gets scattered across the site, in ~news, ~misc, ~tech, ~lgbt, ~enviro, etc. I think that's actually a feature and not a bug, and I'd be against centralizing them into ~politics. The implication to me is that ~news would then be for "any news, unless it's political" and ditto for the other groups where politically-tinged stories can get posted. That's too arbitrary of a line to draw in my opinion.
Would this work as a sub-group in ~news? We could collect political news in ~news.politics.
This seems more sensible to me than a new top-level group.
Depending on the volume of posts, this might become a tool for me to filter out straight up politics from other news posts.
One advantage of having a new top level group over a subgroup of ~news is that it more readily accommodates opinion and think pieces which it might be nice to distinguish from actual news. This can be accomplished already through tags but it might be worth an experiment.
~news would continue being the place to post actual news, with country specific tags as needed.
~politics would be a place to post both political news as well as opinion pieces and think pieces which are usually political in that they advocate for specific policies. It could also have text posts of user chosen topics that might generate discussion (a natural example would be @alyaza's weekly election threads).
Obviously the distinction here is murky but it is something to think about.
Arguably, the "hot take of the day" format you get when you're full of opinion and think pieces might contribute to political arguments and general toxicity. I wonder if it might be better for the community overall and the quality of discussion to discourage over reliance on think-pieces as content since they so often tend to be clickbaity and designed to stoke outrage. They're kind of like image-macro memes, a few now and then are entertaining, but they're addictive and if you let them go unchecked they will overwhelm all other forms of engagement.
The fear with a "politics" group is that it's an inherently contentious topic area and if too many of the people are engaging with your site through those discussions, then they will become habituated to engaging with your site in ways that are contentious, argumentative, and oppositional by default. Those norms become entrenched and spread to the other parts of the site that the politics crew are used to. This is sort of what happened with reddit, where they basically invented /r/politics as a way to quarantine that sort of toxicity and it wound up overwhelming much of the rest of the site.
I, unfortunately, only have subjective experience to back this up. But I think if you can make sure political discussions happen in groups whose primary association with each other is apolitical, people tend to be more willing to hear each other out and it's less likely to get out of hand. If you're there to talk politics qua politics rather than politics qua caring about the environment (just as an example), you're more likely to get dug in an approach it as an all-or-nothing team sport.
Consequently, I would argue for keeping ~news a bit drier and letting the opinion pieces get scattered across multiple sub-groups so you don't have the same types of people arguing about everything in the same types of ways. So environmental policy stays in ~environment, meta-political stuff can be in a ~politicalscience subgroup, gender politics stuff can get worked out in a women's and men's subgroup, etc.
Some amount of team-sports political discussion is inevitable though, and can even be constructive as @alyaza's threads demonstrate. So it's a tough balance to strike. We may need to have a specific "election news" dedicated weekly thread that spins up whenever there is a US election on.
I hadn't considered opinion pieces. But I imagine 'politics' posts to mostly be news about politicians/politics (such as the 3 examples given by @Douglas.
Opinion pieces are a broader category than politics, for me. They can also be on how people should raise their cats, or why we should/should't use certain terminology in political discourse or adhere to certain habits, which might go under ~hobbies, ~news.politics, and ~life, respectively. Although now I write this, I see how the middle one doesn't quite work...
Yeah, perhaps the best way to distinguish opinion pieces is via tagging them as such. The one thing I am realizing going through this thread is how hard it is to judge whether something should have its own group, or whether tagging suffices.
Taxonomy. Good way to start fights ;).
You would be able to browse ~news with ~news.politics filtered out.
Exactly. I can imagine wanting that if the volume of posts warrants it.
Oh, I misread what you said; I thought your comment was in favour of a top-level ~politics group.
Or potentially as regional subgroups within news, such as ~news.usa ~news.australia.
Actually, though, I don't think it needs anything other than a "politics" tag (and maybe a country tag) to be effective, because politics is fairly all-encompassing. There's tech politics, political news, politics of science, etc. Centralizing it makes it hard for the broader topics, in my opinion.
All three examples are US politics. I feel politics is so nation-bound that to have a top-level group for this might be weird/unclear.
A hypothetical ~politics group could mirror the structure of the existing ~news group, where most posts have a country-specific tag - and eventually split off into sub-groups for each country.
This gets me thinking along a tangent - should there be a "original content" subgroup for ~creative?
I'm not artistic at all, but I enjoy reading / viewing other people's artistic OC in ~creative, and I feel a bit dirty when I post articles like this one there - like I'm taking away space from people's OC with a news story about a public art installation.
It's a strange group because it fills the role of being a catch-all "art that doesn't already have a group" place while also being the self-promotion place even for things which do have their own groups.
So while what you mention is surely an option, I wonder if these things should be together at all or instead separated to avoid that conflict.
Examples: I don't think examples are really needed; these would just be pretty much the same posts that already go in ~games, but better filtered and allowing for tighter-knit communities around them.
Contingency plan: keep them in ~games.
EDIT: and if the ~games.video/~games.tabletop split goes through (that should probably be evaluated before this proposal, and FWIW I 100% support such a split), then all these should be third-level groups under ~games.video. ~games.video.rpg, ~games.video.fps, etc.
I'd like to see ~games.tabletop or ~games.boardgames in that list as well. Not all games are computer-based.
Right. If the ~games.video/~games.tabletop split goes through, those would be third-level groups, e.g. ~games.video.rpg.
is there a breakdown of the most common tags by group?
Nothing easily accessible, though you could kind of get an idea by looking at which tags are present in the autocomplete suggestions for each group.
I could pull some data out pretty easily though, what are you hoping to see specifically?
Something else you could look at is a corralling approach for certain subgroups. What tags have the highest combination of how many people filter out the tag and how much the tag gets used in a group? If a tag has a lot of use but there are also a lot of people who don't want to see it then corral it off into its own subgroup.
well, if everybody makes a strong effort to properly tag things, that should give us a better idea of which groups / subgroups would be worth creating. Often we think we need something for a community, but once its active, it gets very little use.
I think we have enough groups given the traffic. Creating too many groups will only confuse people, and not improve the site.
That's not to say that we shouldn't change the current group structure. Perhaps we should have a look at the statistics for each group, and consider fusing the low-activity ones with bigger ones, and possibly splitting the bigger ones. But I think overall the system works well.
That is a good point.
For point 3, just for clarification, what would you consider to be a failure or a success?
Nothing really formal, I just think that we should have some kind of back-out plan if we end up with a group that isn't really getting much activity or even seems to be adding confusion about where to post some topics.
A quarterly purge of groups with little to no activity over the previous two quarters would be work well.
For root level groups that don't work out, those posts would most likely already be going elsewhere (e.g. a failed ~design's content would most likely find most its intended content in ~art.)
For subgroups, they simply get posted one level back. I think most of the finer taxonomy will naturally work itself out.
I think we could also talk a bit about merging and renaming some groups. Like I said elsewhere in this thread, I am not really fond of the toplevel ~humanities / ~science split, as IRL the split is generally mostly administrative: disciplines collaborate all over the place, and those like linguistics, sociology, archaeology essentially are somewhere in between that split. If we got ~socialsciences too, it'd only become more problematic. So I'd suggest instead we merge ~humanities and ~science into ~research.
There also is some overlap between ~comp and ~tech, and while I don't really have a concrete, well thought out idea on what to do there, maybe renaming ~comp to ~prog or ~devel could resolve most of the ambiguity there. Almost all tech includes computers anyways, so a more clear dichotomy is that of coding and consuming software.
WRT ~books, I'd like to see a discussion around renaming it to ~reading instead, given ~books is a bit too arbitrarily restrictive: audio books? magazines? journals? newspapers (not in the sense of news but a meta reading sense)? which ones are excluded and why?
I don't hang around at ~news, which I thing has the highest traffic here, but for the rest, I actually think that we don't have enough content anywhere to necessitate or support the creation of new groups. Even the situation on ~creative is like this: there obviously is a divide between original content and the rest, but OC is not posted nearly frequently enough to warrant a separate group for it.
Maybe a way to filter with a whitelist (i.e. filter in instead of filter out) per group would help satisfy most of the requests for new groups here?
The breakage from merging and renaming could be solved with simple 301 redirects, at least that's my idea on how to deal with the ramifications of renaming/merging.
I'm with you. I think we need fewer top-level groups, not more. For example I think we should have ~entertainment, and several of today's top-level groups should be sub-groups of it.
Someone else mentioned Dewey Decimal Classification as a possible inspiration for group structure, and I'm tempted to suggest basing the entire group structure on it (or the related Universal Decimal Classification). We'd lose some of the most popular groups of today though, like ~news and ~talk, but I'm not sure that's a bad thing. Every top level group could have subgroups for news and talk related to that subject.
That would be a huge mega-group, covering a couple of dozen different topics. Meanwhile, computer programming has its own top-level group. That's a bit unbalanced.
Well, this is not backed by numbers or anything, just gut feeling, but all in all ~comp probably generates more traffic than ~humanities and ~science combined. But it is not about that, it is about where we draw boundaries, and here there simply is not a clear boundary, and unclear ones are unproductive.
Programming is a widely interdisciplinary and inter-industry topic that is part of almost everything in our lives. It does deserve a group dedicated to it. It's become the soffritto of human civilisation by now.
Here are the numbers for you, which @Icarus helpfully compiled. Your statistic is right. Based on @Icarus's measure of "Overall Participation", ~comp does generate more traffic (21,723) than ~humanities (5,906) and ~science (9,266) combined.
This reflects the current crowd on Tildes, who are very STEM-heavy and mostly involved in IT.
However, if Tildes is going to succeed, it needs to appeal to more than just computer programmers. It needs to include content about the whole human experience. And it also needs to show that it includes this breadth of content. Hiding all the academic subjects in one group would be messy and unproductive. It would also tell people that computer programming is welcome here, but anything academic, such as history or biology or sociology, is only tolerated in what would effectively be a "miscellaneous" group.
I'm not saying that computer programming shouldn't be prominent. I'm saying that the humanities and the social sciences and the natural sciences should be similarly prominent. Let's show the world that Tildes is about more than just programming and technology.
It's ironic that you want computer programming highlighted separately from everything else because it's interdisciplinary, but your argument for merging ~humanities and ~science is that their content is interdisciplinary. One interdisciplinary subject gets pulled out and featured in its own individual top-level group, while dozens of other interdisciplinary subjects get bundled together and hidden under a mega-group.
That's not really the case: programming is just wider as a topic to talk about: it's both a craft, a hobby, a form of art and expression, and a science. It is simply too broad to split up, and it is quite easy to discuss on it in mostly isolation separating it from the actual links of it to other fields.
Academia OTOH is a mish mash of disciplines that form an interconnected network of areas of study, there are literary papers out there that cite quantum physics; linguistics is deeply interwoven with psychology, neurology, speech pathology, computer science, anatomy, physics, acoustics, history, literature, anthropology, ethnology and sociology; digital humanities connect all forms of study of arts and humanities to the craft and science of computer science; statistical analysis and AI emerge as a reseach tool in all of social sciences and humanities; sciences are deeply interrelated in ways I won't bother listing here: the whole thing is organically interlinked, whereas programming is has become the generic tool for everything, the metaphorical Hammer for all the metaphorical Nails. It is like food, really: it is directly related to economics, society, tradition, health, history, and whatnot, but yet it is the best to talk about it by itself.
I think we should aim for pragmatic benefits to us all and productivity instead of a subjective ideal of balance.
Also, I do think having ~research as a toplevel, active community signals way better a predilection for the entirety of academia and research than a frankly inactive ~humanities and mildly active ~science.
A group for posting and discussing op-ed pieces and/or any strong feelings you may have about a particular subject. Posts on here will be different from other groups where current events and news are mingled with thinkpieces.
It's time to get rid of the lottery
Joe Biden Won Last Night's Democratic Debate
Even If The Warriors Win, Oakland Loses
Another possibility is having opinion sub-groups, maybe something like ~science.opinion or ~news.oped.
opinionseems to better fit as a tag than as a group, in my opinion (heh), as it's effectively a disposition, not a topic.
That being said, I think proposals like this have merit for other features of tildes, like selecting tags + groups you want to see those tags in to get a curated view that operates similar to a group without adhering to a more rigid topic scope.
I would present the same argument against ~opinion as I presented against ~videos: this group would effectively become a miscellaneous collection of all types of content, including opinions about politics and sports and history and science. If I want to see someone's opinion about the latest historical discovery, I'll need to wade through ~opinion to see if there's anything there. It makes more sense to have opinion pieces about various subjects in the same groups as those subjects.
I'd like to see ~sports sub-categorized for major sports. I don't know how representative I am, but I follow hockey enough to want to see hockey posts, but I'm really not at all interested in anything else that might be posted under ~sports. This would be strictly better than the current systems where (AFAIK) I have to subscribe to ~sports as a whole and then filter out individual tags.
I'm not really sure what the "failure" condition would be here, but if for some reason it was met everything could just be dumped back under ~sports.
A ~videos group has been suggested before. However, a very good point was made that videos is just a format of content, rather than a type of content. A ~videos group would be just a miscellaneous group - it would have all sorts of content.
What benefit do you think there is of collecting a variety of unrelated content, removing them from their relevant groups, and collecting them in a miscellany based only on the fact that they're using video to present information?
For instance: if I want to see a video about history, I would expect to find it in a history-themed group. How would I find this video in a miscellaneous videos group?
That's a great point.
I suppose for me personally, I typically browse video groups when I'm in a space that I can watch videos at, and often skip past them when I'm not. It may be a niche request as it appears to be in this case, and it totally makes sense to keep the system we've got in place. But I'll keep the post up in case there's others who agree or have different or better reasoning.
Just FYI, you can basically already accomplish that method of browsing by using ?tag=videos. It works on the "front page" and even in individual groups (e.g. ~humanities?tag=videos).
I would say this is more of a niche than ~videos implies, but in the case of videos which are creative works not about a specific topic, they're currently awkwardly ~creative or ~misc submissions without their own place to go. I'd like to see a place for YouTube animations or shorts or other things that don't fit in ~tv or ~movies.
That seems as it should be: creative works are being posted in ~creative.
Well sure, if we wanted to then we could ditch ~anime, ~books, ~food, ~games, chunks of ~hobbies, ~movies, ~music, ~tv, and arguably more because they're creative works and can go under ~creative, but we recognize that as being suboptimal and give these things their own spaces. You might say that these are outliers not important enough to have their own space, and that's fine, I just don't agree. Most people probably agree with you. The reason they're important enough for me is just that: they're important to me.
Of course, I'm also of the opinion that the OC / self-promotion function of ~creative should become its whole purpose. I'd like if its other role as ~artmisc was solved by making groups like this. But that's a much bigger issue that isn't on the table right now.
Actually, right now is exactly when the table is open for you to put this issue on it. That's the point of this whole thread.
If you want an ~arts group, suggest it in this thread. Write a top-level comment explaining that you think ~creative should be re-purposed for people to share original content ("Tilders being creative"), and that ~arts should cover the arts (that aren't already covered by ~tv, ~books, ~movies, ~music): dancing, poetry, painting, sculpture, photography, theatre, and so on.
Do it now.
Ehh what I meant is that my preferred option would require changes beyond the scope of this that there's no use getting into, but sure. I might as well do that.
As @Algernon_Asimov said, this is more about the format. I think it would be worthwhile to ensure that videos are tagged as such, which should fulfill your desires (ie - you can filter by video when you want to just watch videos, you can filter out videos when you don't want to) and this would keep the topics clean; you wouldn't have to wonder about where to post a video about games, or a video about sports, or a video about science.
I would love to be able to filter out all videos, as I'm not generally in a place to appreciate content in that format, but currently videos are rarely tagged as such.
Well I'll try to remember to tag things that are videos as such when I see them. If more people do the same, then your problem will be fixed!
I'd quite like to see a group for casual discussion. The format would be similar to r/CasualUK. No politics, nothing serious, take a look there for yourself as it's quite difficult to describe it.
~talk seems a bit too AskReddit for this in my opinion, it seems mainly focused on questions and answers, so I'm proposing a separate ~casual group that could be split into sub-groups for individual countries like ~casual.uk for things more specific to a country/culture people from elsewhere won't really understand.
I feel like there'd be a bit too much for it to fit into ~talk with a
casualtag, and as a sub-group of ~talk group names could become a bit overwhelming (~talk.casual.europe.country as an example) but if it doesn't work and there aren't very many posts we could move them there.
That's definitely part of what ~talk is intended for. Like you said, it's not currently being used for that very often, but it could be, someone just has to make the posts. There have been lots of posts in there with a "casual" tag: https://tildes.net/~talk?tag=casual
The "what are you doing this weekend/week?" threads are quite casual too, as well as a few other semi-regular ones.
I would like to see a group dedicated to the musical styling of Henry Kissinger.
We could talk about Henry singing, what songs he should sing, and why his music career never got off the ground.
If the group doesn't work then we can move on to Will Shatner.