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Probation post: "I disagree"

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Location: Denmark 57N
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Asking me to change "I am going to disagree" to "I believe" is entirely pointless as they basically both mean the same thing, except "I believe" implies that it is just something I pulled out of thin air like religion rather than something that can be looked at with facts. The original is not insulting it simply says I do not agree with the person I am replying to. I have not attacked the person or even ridiculed the idea. the post is also 6 days old. It can stay deleted as I do not see any reason to edit it. Using the word disagree is not in itself disagreeable.
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One could also use the words, "I think" or "I've come to the understanding" or "it seems to me" or "I just read this" or even "I view things differently."

It seems to be less confrontational if we state our own ideas and thoughts and understandings, rather than talking about what we don't like in someone else's post. We don't post "truths" here on permies, just thoughts, ideas, information, logic, support, beliefs, evidence.

"Disagree," to me, isn't the worst thing one could say. Disagreement by definition is just as statement of difference. But, the connotation in the word adds some confrontation, that I don't think is really necessary or even helpful.

Like, I could have started out this post by saying, "Skandi, I disagree with you." Well, that sounds harsh and not-nice and puts us at odds with each other. By stating what I think, I've shared a view point that is slightly different, without turning it into an argument (hopefully!).

Generally, to me, it doesn't ever seem necessary to say, point blank, that I disagree with someone, or that I even view things differently. I can post my viewpoints and my support for them, and anyone reading will likely be able to tell my ideas are different. Yet, by not using diversive language, like "disagree," I'm less likely to start a "flame war" or an argument.


Also, when we point out something that is different or a disagreement, people are more likely to respond back in a rebuttal, and harsher language usually then ensues. As a moderator, I see this happen a lot. A large part of what we try to do is put out fires before they get big. Sometimes, a little "spark" of an argument, with a word like "disagree" doesn't start a big argument, but about 50% of the time, it seems, a big ol' argument ensues and soon we're running around having to put post after post on probation or delete them because one person was a little not nice, and the next person responded a little more not nice, and so on and so on until there's a whole lot of really "not nice" posts. So, we try to squash the fire before it begins, and we try to be consistent. So, even if something like "disagree" doesn't seem to be making a flame war happen, it might have in the past, and we had to intervene there. It only seems fair to also intervene in every case, so someone doesn't come along and say, "Hey, why were they able to say disagree when I wasn't two years ago?!"
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The thread in question had a lot of posts that needed staff attention because they did not meet publishing standards.

The staff went back in the thread to see if there were any triggers that caused this mis-behaviour.  One of the triggers we look for is the word "disagree".  We know this word encourages people to start arguing with past statements, instead of adding to the conversation in a positive way.  Your post had this word.

My own post in that thread was also put on probation for 3 words that triggered conflict.  It was easy to edit.  I could keep the same content but just say it in a less aggressive way.  Your post only had one word wrong with it, so I imagine it might be even easier to change.  

Many of the posts in that thread were removed for not meeting publishing standards.  Only a tiny handful was deemed good enough to save.  The staff felt that yours was so we gave you the chance to rephrase it in a nicer way.  

Have a read of the be nice thread in my signature if you are having trouble understanding why the word disagrees causes conflict in forum communication.  

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I took a look at the post in question.  I probably would have let it go, but I can see why somebody on the staff wanted to ask you to tone it down.

That's the thing with an all volunteer staff:  if you make the training hard, or the rules too tight, then you have no volunteer staff.    So the site ends up being ruled by the person on the staff that is the most militant about this sort thing.

We do have some changes coming to the software for a "soft probation".

I think the most important thing at this moment is:  I would like to thank the volunteers at permies that put in the long difficult hours on this site!

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