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  1. #1
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Default Communication types on this forum.

    Has anyone noticed a certain pattern in the communication forms offered on this forum?

    Namely, this one:



    I wonder if it was accidental, or deliberate, that it has come to fill all these niches?

  2. #2
    Emerging Tallulah's Avatar
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    Yeah, I think it's just sorted itself out that way. Keeps a lot of unnecessary personal fluffing off the main forums, which is good.

    I'm glad you're back, Ath!

  3. #3
    veteran attention whore Jeffster's Avatar
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    Yeah, now that you mention it, I was just thinking "this forum sure does resemble a box with words both inside it and outside it."
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    Blah Orangey's Avatar
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    ^^Hehe
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffster View Post
    Yeah, now that you mention it, I was just thinking "this forum sure does resemble a box with words both inside it and outside it."
    It's jam-packed with quadrilaterals and letters.

  6. #6
    IRL is not real Cimarron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffster View Post
    Yeah, now that you mention it, I was just thinking "this forum sure does resemble a box with words both inside it and outside it."
    You make a good point.

    I thought Athenian was going somewhere with the diagram, though.
    Last edited by Cimarron; 10-10-2008 at 05:41 PM. Reason: I guess I'll make my post relevant to the OP
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  7. #7
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tallulah View Post
    Yeah, I think it's just sorted itself out that way. Keeps a lot of unnecessary personal fluffing off the main forums, which is good.

    I'm glad you're back, Ath!
    Yes, that is a good thing, and I can see that being one of the results of having this. But it is interesting how it ends up accommodating four distinct styles, as if to show there was a place for each type you wanted to engage in. It also reveals something about four basic kinds of communication that occur (at least on the Internet).

    Oh, it's good to be back. I just got a little burned out on some of the drama that was going on here at one point, and a little bored with MBTI, so I left for a while. Honestly, it wasn't a conscious decision... I tend to drift away naturally when I get bored or repulsed, and drift back when I get interested again.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffster View Post
    Yeah, now that you mention it, I was just thinking "this forum sure does resemble a box with words both inside it and outside it."
    Quote Originally Posted by Cimarron View Post
    You make a good point.

    I thought Athenian was going somewhere with the diagram, though.
    Oh.

    Was Tallulah the only one who had any clue what I was referring to? If you want me to clarify, I will.

  8. #8
    Senior Member kuranes's Avatar
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    I've only checked out a few forums, but I prefer the ones small enough and active enough that you get to actually know many of the people in them, and so callling it a "community" has some actual meaning ( IMHO ) .

    There is always trade-offs involved in the kinds of posts/messages one can leave. Although there are obviously exceptions, many of the points involving complex issues can seem to demand a verbose OP, but then, few people will want to read it. The solution to that ( in this case ) is to just take some piquant implication of whatever that complex issue is, and use it to start an exchange of questions. Some people are great at doing that, and I wish I were better.

    I prefer to explain the complex point upfront, where I can lay out how I see the parts of it fitting together, and do it in a flow that makes sense to me, and that I think will make more sense to others.

    People at podiums invoke this all the time when they say "If you'll just hold your questions until after you've heard the talk or seen the movie." Websites do this too with structured FAQ's which they prefer people to use before the interacting.

    But on these forums, it is generally not a good idea ( even though I thumb my nose at this phenomena ) to lay out much of what you want to say upfront. People asking questions is supposed to be the "meat" of the thread. But it isn't necessarily the meat of the thread, at least in the mind of the person who's trying to get a discussion started about thing "Z" or in a certain direction.

    In other words, sometimes to understand a question "Z" you must first understand Points "X" and "Y", which are fairly complex in and of themselves.

    If you don't let the OP lay out "X" and "Y", because you are "taking control of the conversation" before he/she has even gotten to the question, then the thread often goes in a completely different direction. That may be fine for serendipity, and even produce some good discoveries/content and interplay, but NOT so good for the person who never gets to ask their original question.

    There are often people who want to critique either the OP question ( if delivered provocatively versus fully blown ) , or where they think you're going with it, too. So they'll ask ( during this "X" and "Y" period ) lots of things that they believe will expose unstated assumptions or faulty logic etc. and you'll have to answer each one, coming out of sequence. I wish I was better at doing this.

    Einstein said that "You're not an expert on something until you can explain it to your grandmother." Guys who are expected to be in combat a lot are often trained, not only how to take their gun apart and put it back together quickly after cleaning it, but how to do it in the dark with mosquitoes covering their face etc.

    So I admit to maybe not being able to explain all of the subjects I bring up with this facility. Does that mean that they are not worth talking about ? I might know about a certain new feature for recent production models of that gun, for example ( continuing the analogy ) that the person I just described doesn't know about. Or I might know about new guns that make that standard one somewhat irrelevant in the near future.

    The upshot of this rule of having to use the "Lay out your point through Q/A versus exposition" approach is that I may never get to bring up "Z" except in isolated form, out of sequence. But if I do that, then the questioners will not know about X and Y first, as they need to for it to be meaningful, and so they can dismiss it by referring to issues that would have been covered by "X" or "Y".

    That's not to say that everything worth talking about has a complex beginning. But it certainly does lead me to be inclined to banter with people instead of a lot of other types of posts, because I am more certain people will actually read a short post.
    "The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them that they are being attacked and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."
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  9. #9
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kuranes View Post
    I've only checked out a few forums, but I prefer the ones small enough and active enough that you get to actually know many of the people in them, and so callling it a "community" has some actual meaning ( IMHO ) .
    I think I can understand that, although one thing I dislike about a "community" atmosphere at times, is that it can get more xenophobic, and lead to people being required to pick up on and pay attention to more little things and cultural nuances than they would in a more diverse community.
    There is always trade-offs involved in the kinds of posts/messages one can leave. Although there are obviously exceptions, many of the points involving complex issues can seem to demand a verbose OP, but then, few people will want to read it. The solution to that ( in this case ) is to just take some piquant implication of whatever that complex issue is, and use it to start an exchange of questions. Some people are great at doing that, and I wish I were better.
    I don't think I would be very good at that, either. So if I post anything, it's usually a very simple thing that doesn't require much explanation. I usually just respond to other people's posts, though.
    I prefer to explain the complex point upfront, where I can lay out how I see the parts of it fitting together, and do it in a flow that makes sense to me, and that I think will make more sense to others.

    People at podiums invoke this all the time when they say "If you'll just hold your questions until after you've heard the talk or seen the movie." Websites do this too with structured FAQ's which they prefer people to use before the interacting.

    But on these forums, it is generally not a good idea ( even though I thumb my nose at this phenomena ) to lay out much of what you want to say upfront. People asking questions is supposed to be the "meat" of the thread. But it isn't necessarily the meat of the thread, at least in the mind of the person who's trying to get a discussion started about thing "Z" or in a certain direction.

    In other words, sometimes to understand a question "Z" you must first understand Points "X" and "Y", which are fairly complex in and of themselves.
    I think that I can understand where you're coming from, and consider that approach to be better for research on MBTI. The approach used is better for playful conversation and making people feel welcome and "at home" than anything else, but it doesn't lead to much thought or many complex issues being discussed. I've learned that I should probably just approach individuals who are open to it about things like that, honestly... it never works on an open forum.

    If you don't let the OP lay out "X" and "Y", because you are "taking control of the conversation" before he/she has even gotten to the question, then the thread often goes in a completely different direction. That may be fine for serendipity, and even produce some good discoveries/content and interplay, but NOT so good for the person who never gets to ask their original question.

    There are often people who want to critique either the OP question ( if delivered provocatively versus fully blown ) , or where they think you're going with it, too. So they'll ask ( during this "X" and "Y" period ) lots of things that they believe will expose unstated assumptions or faulty logic etc. and you'll have to answer each one, coming out of sequence. I wish I was better at doing this.
    I see... yes. I suppose I'm okay at doing that, although I can see how it would result in the original point being lost or obscured in many cases. I think the trick is asking the question from just the right angle to get people to ask all the questions they'd need to reason out the issue you pointed to on their own.


    Einstein said that "You're not an expert on something until you can explain it to your grandmother." Guys who are expected to be in combat a lot are often trained, not only how to take their gun apart and put it back together quickly after cleaning it, but how to do it in the dark with mosquitoes covering their face etc.

    So I admit to maybe not being able to explain all of the subjects I bring up with this facility. Does that mean that they are not worth talking about ? I might know about a certain new feature for recent production models of that gun, for example ( continuing the analogy ) that the person I just described doesn't know about. Or I might know about new guns that make that standard one somewhat irrelevant in the near future.

    The upshot of this rule of having to use the "Lay out your point through Q/A versus exposition" approach is that I may never get to bring up "Z" except in isolated form, out of sequence. But if I do that, then the questioners will not know about X and Y first, as they need to for it to be meaningful, and so they can dismiss it by referring to issues that would have been covered by "X" or "Y".

    That's not to say that everything worth talking about has a complex beginning. But it certainly does lead me to be inclined to banter with people instead of a lot of other types of posts, because I am more certain people will actually read a short post.
    That's kind of sad to hear. I mean, I can see how the way things are done is useful for making the idea more accessible, but it also seems to inhibit certain kinds of discussions from taking place... namely, discussions that could really help further understanding of a particular thing, rather than just rehashing the basics and dismissing simple questions all the time with answers you already know.

  10. #10
    Senior Member kuranes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Athenian200 View Post
    That's kind of sad to hear. I mean, I can see how the way things are done is useful for making the idea more accessible, but it also seems to inhibit certain kinds of discussions from taking place...
    Yeah, that's it. Thanks for reading the whole thing.
    "The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them that they are being attacked and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."
    Reichsfuhrer Herman Goering at the Nuremburg trials.

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