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P&D Rules - Printable Version

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P&D Rules - Nuke - 09-16-2014

I've been noticing a lot of confusion on the nature of debate, mostly grounded in personal dogma and disagreements in dogmatic issues, in the last few days.

So I'll lay out some ground rules for debate.

1. Use sources for actual research and events that you claim happened.
//It is permissible to not include a direct link if the source is easily found on the first page of a search engine. Google particularly has a special listing for sources within academic papers and a special listing for news. These are very helpful. However, if the news is not readily found (not a direct result listing on the front page of a search by a person who is not proficient in Google-fu), you'll need to provide a link to your source. If you can't find the link, just give up the point; if you're good at proving your argument, one study or event like that shouldn't be too important. See Rule #2.

2. No dogma is fact; your authorities are subject to criticism.
//Dogma are the underlying beliefs to arguments. They are always up for debate. Popular dogma include equality of outcome, various forms of equality, democracy, freedom, and a lot of other things that emerged as very popular in recent centuries. Your teacher is not infallible. I don't care that people agree with you. The Koran is not always true.

3. No "I'm right; you're wrong; end of story."
//This rule was created originally because someone did not accept the idea others could have other opinions in regards to nature versus nurture, and simply claimed all dissent was uneducated or ignorant rather than giving any form of argument. Please, give an argument.

4. No spamming "What if".
//Sometimes, a "What If" or two is fine. Asking questions to boost your arguments is a perfectly fine way to improve your points. However, at some point, you're just being an asshole, listing questions, and making yourself into a foolish clown. Needless to say, spamming something else is still liable for moderation.

5. Do not use fallacies or irrelevant drivel as arguments.
//"You're ignorant. Have you ever won an argument before? You're a Fascist! Reactionary means you reject proactive and preventative methods, not a term referring to an 'extreme conservative' or one who wishes to 'go back to a prior state' or otherwise defeat Progressivism -- and did you know, Progressivism is Progressive? You used a word with two meanings and I'm going to assume the one you obviously didn't mean. You said '[wrong-word]' instead of '[obvious-right-word]'!" Wikipedia's massive repository of fallacies should have you covered on all the arguments I don't want you to make.
5a. These can be used when these are actually relevant. //When someone rewrites Mein Kampf along egalitarian lines, you are right to use Reductio ad Hitlerum. When someone proudly announces "I am a Fascist!", you are not right to use Reductio ad Hitlerum.
5b. These can be used to null opposing arguments, in some cases. //The appropriate response to "You have no right to invade this country!" may be "You had no right to take over their government last month."

6. You lose the right to your own opinion the minute you enter a debate forum.
//This area is about imposing your beliefs on others, not just saying "I believe in pink dinosaur on a unicycle." It was in that previous link, but it requires special attention. You are not here to be closed-minded. You are here to engage in active discussions with people with whom you do not agree.

7. Try to "agree to disagree" if necessary.
//Sometimes, you just aren't right. Sometimes, you just aren't good at convincing people or explaining your beliefs. Sometimes, you just can't agree. If you can't convince someone, no matter how much you try, you should probably try to improve your skills in debate. You should also think about the fact your ideas may contain the problem; if they contain the problem, you should probably change how you think a little.

8. Never try to argue based on how you believe posts were edited to hurt you. Likewise, do not change the content of your post to make responses look stupid.
//Many people, including myself, edit posts for to fix typos, grammar, etc. Please do not make a fuss about this; report it to the staff. If the staff did it, report it to me. If I did it, you're just trying to cause trouble.

RE: Controversial Rules - Nuke - 09-16-2014

Rule #10 ("Have fun! //You know I needed a tenth rule.") removed.
Rule #7 moved to spot 10.
New Rule #7: Authorities. I originally thought this would be OK for the relevance fallacies, but I then realized no one would realize it would be an irrelevant thing, so I added it like I added #6.

RE: Controversial Rules - Nuke - 05-09-2015

Wording of various rules modified.

RE: Controversial Rules - Nuke - 06-06-2015

Removed Rule #10 entitling situational, universal exceptions to the rules.

RE: Controversial Rules - Nuke - 06-06-2015

Modified exceptions to Rule 5 to be more generic and less bound to topic context.

RE: Controversial Rules - Nuke - 12-17-2015

Remodeled Rule #3 to be more abstract and not focus on Nature versus Nurture.
Transformed #5b into an exception for nullifying arguments with no dependence on tu quoque.
Rewrote Rules #8 and #9.

RE: Controversial Rules - Nuke - 12-17-2015

Rewrote #7 for the purposes of clarification and removed references to Rule #1 in it.
Merged Rules #8 and #9; former Rule #10 is now #9.
Rewrote Rule #5; added comments to Exceptions #5a and #5b. Removed references to hypocrisy from the core of #5b.

EDIT: Previously said "Clarified #7", which was not as descriptive.

RE: Controversial Rules - Nuke - 12-17-2015

Modified Rule #4 comment; added that other argument spam is also subject to moderation, despite continuing focus on "What if" arguments.
Merged Rule #7 into Rule #2; Rules #8 and #9 (fast update: was #10 earlier) have become #7 and #8.
Edited Rule #8.

RE: Controversial Rules - Nuke - 12-17-2015

Edited Exception #5a comment.

RE: P&D Rules - Nuke - 06-23-2017

Area name changed.