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  1. #11
    Neutron Neutron is offline

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    The mods should make this thread a sticky and let it be updated for missed threads of interest.

    Just had a quick look at the forum at it appears people are going soft!

    Threads about Jimmy Carr have reached upto 10 pages in about 2 hours, the type of poster on P.ie is fast becomming like those who watch X Factor!
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  2. #12
    Marcos the black Marcos the black is online now
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    Cos none of the above about Shinners? Don't you know that Shinners rule the roost now.. What would they be doing posting on topics about "the Ecomony" or "Europe" etc???
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  3. #13
    Keith-M Keith-M is offline
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    I agree. I think the moderators should do a better job on promoting "worthy" thread, making them, "topic of the day" or some such.
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  4. #14
    mflynn2 mflynn2 is offline

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    I looked at a couple of the threads - one subject had had 3 threads in recent times, the other had a similar, contemporaneous thread.
    So, that might be a contibutory factor.
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  5. #15
    TommyO'Brien TommyO'Brien is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Con Gallagher View Post
    An excellent thread.

    It isn't just on this site. It is all over society. In effect our attention span has collapsed and we have been conditioned to look for simple soundbite black-and-white arguments. Anything more complicated goes over the heads of most people.

    A century ago the main newspapers in Ireland were the Freeman's Journal and the Irish Independent. The main evening newspapers were the Evening Telegraph and the Dublin Evening Mail. Look back at their contents. (They are on the net.) A century ago most Irish people did not go beyond primary school. Yet every day they either read one of those papers, often two or more, plus a weekly provincial newspaper, or had it read to them.

    You will see the contents were by the standards of today quite highbrow.



    There weren't tabloid. They were serious, ponderous and detailed. There were no columnists with superficial analysis or cheap one-liners.

    Below is a clip from ITN News at Ten in the 1980s, when it was a relatively highbrow detailed programme. (Look at the report on a Westminster debate from around 3.37 in and compare it to the superficial reports of today's parliamentary debates on the News at Ten and the BBC Ten O'Clock News.) Modern news bulletins are all about image, style and graphics, not content. The modern News at Ten is almost unrecognisable from the News at Ten of the days of Sandy Gall and Alastair Burnett in the 1980s.




    The clip below is of an RTÉ News bulletin in the 1980s with Don Cockburn, one of RTÉ's main newsreaders in the period. You will notice that the headlines and content are less driven by soundbites and are a lot more literal. The audiences in the 1980s were used to relatively high brow, detailed broadcasting.



    Neither RTÉ, BBC nor ITV would try that sort of detailed broadcasting that was clinical and factual in its language and not driven by emotion, putting on a show or graphics packages.

    The point is simple: communication culture in the last two decades has been dumbed down and is now driven by short, snappy, often wildly inaccurate tabloid-style coverage of the likes of Ian O'Doherty.

    We now live in a world where people expect things that are light on detail and heavy on simplistic emotion and black and white narratives - a form of communication version of the Big Mac. That's why, for example, you may have noticed that in the last half of the general election RTÉ and TV3 stopped leading their news bulletins with election stories - their research found the audience found the election stuff too complicated and were turning off. It is why politicians do all those silly photo-ops and distill messages into very simplistic forms (hence in the referendum 'Austerity' and 'Stability' being the key buzzwords). They find modern audiences no longer have the stomach to discuss detailed stuff. So they have to break it down into visual stunts and easy buzzwords. (It is also why when it started Coronation Street could have scenes that ran for up to ten minutes. Nowdays it is 3-4 minutes tops, often shorter. They find the modern audience has lost the ability to concentrate for long periods.)

    Most of the threads you list are all too heavy for an audience that wants light, superficial black versus white, good versus bad topics. What happens here is reflective of what has happened in society. People want things light, fluffy, emotional and theatrical, not detailed, heavy, factual and challenging.

    So modern communication everywhere is of the 'white hat, black hat' form. (In old cowboy movies to make it easy to follow the good guy wore a white hat and the bad guy a black hat. When in The Virginian the good guy wore a black hat it caused no end of confusion to American audiences!)

    So modern society expects things dumbed down and simplified and freaks out over detail or highbrow stuff or the sort that a couple of generations ago people of all educational standards accepted and could follow. Only a small minority now look for detail.
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  6. #16
    toxic avenger toxic avenger is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neutron View Post
    The mods should make this thread a sticky and let it be updated for missed threads of interest.

    Just had a quick look at the forum at it appears people are going soft!

    Threads about Jimmy Carr have reached upto 10 pages in about 2 hours, the type of poster on P.ie is fast becomming like those who watch X Factor!
    Actually, the Jimmy Carr thread is, though I do say so myself (I started it), one of the most civilised and engaging threads i have participated in for some time - it's a philosophical debate about the duty of citizens beyond what is stipulated by law. Go have a look.

    Some of the threads mentioned in the OP are good topics of discussion, but I have also seen equally worthy and sometimes obscure subjects (Bolivia, for example) end up being debated for months on end here...
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  7. #17
    InsideImDancing InsideImDancing is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Edo View Post
    that would probably involve thinking outside the narrow prism of the prevalent "your crowd sucks.." and "whataboutery" circus that people have come to know and love about P.ie.........

    To really engage properly in many of these threads.........one would need a bit of time on ones hands - I'll get involved in one or two - but I really dont have the time..............also you can put a lot of effort into putting together a good response - and all you'll get is......."its too long for me to read" - or it will be ignored as 2 or 3 posters who have been wa^nking for 8 or 9 pages in some kind of pointless personal debate of their own and known only to them kinda put everybody else off the thread.........

    I'll probably get flamed from a height for this..................its probably because they are mostly topics that are , from an intellectual point of view - beyond many here...........

    interesting question...................but think of how many of your friends and acquaintances would engage in debate about such subjects in your real life............P.ie probably isn't too different when you think about it.............
    Very good post, bit long though tbf.
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  8. #18
    Warren Poynt Warren Poynt is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by Edo View Post
    that would probably involve thinking outside the narrow prism of the prevalent "your crowd sucks.." and "whataboutery" circus that people have come to know and love about P.ie.........

    ..... you can put a lot of effort into putting together a good response - and all you'll get is......."its too long for me to read" - or it will be ignored as 2 or 3 posters who have been wa^nking for 8 or 9 pages in some kind of pointless personal debate of their own and known only to them kinda put everybody else off the thread.........

    .......its probably because they are mostly topics that are , from an intellectual point of view - beyond many here.............
    Yes, inclined to agree.

    When I first joined P.ie, was prompted to dive into every dog fight and petty argument.

    No more. I now confine my contributions to those threads in which I have a genuine interest and which seem to attract posters with a real desire for dialogue. These threads are generally recognisable by the absence of those with no pretence to logic, reason, and no interest in discourse.

    Too many thread themes seem to encourage those with little to say other than sneer, jeer, insult, name-call, troll or engage in abuse. These posters rarely have anything constructive to say, they are seldom capable of stringing together more than a sentence or paragraph. But when it comes to verbal violence or written poison, they are the experts.

    These worthless contributors are seldom found engaging in challenging discussions/debates.......perhaps, as other posters point out, because they are not equipped intellectually to do so.

    Threads on which these nasty, spiteful and small-minded contributors post are best avoided. No need to be dragged down to their level. In any case, they are not interested in your perspective, preferring instead their own chiched slogans and ill-informed arrogance.

    These posters are easily recognisable and the threads on which they post are predictable.

    They are best avoided.
    Last edited by Warren Poynt; 21st June 2012 at 02:27 AM.
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  9. #19
    MacBeth MacBeth is offline

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    There was a great thread about woolly mammoths yesterday that got sent to the zoo.
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  10. #20
    SideysGhost SideysGhost is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by Con Gallagher View Post
    Why do some threads get so few responses on this site?

    Does it reflect apathy of political anoraks to real issues while they focus on gossip, scandal and hackery?
    Politics in Ireland is a tribal thing, like supporting a football team. And it is not, and never has been, about actual issues. It's all about your "team" scoring points off the other teams, and doling out sweeties to the faithful members of the tribe. And that's it, that's the level of political discourse in Ireland.

    The electorate are no better frankly. The actual level of political knowledge on any sort of educated, philosophical or technical level is appalling in Ireland. To be honest maybe 5% of the population have any sort of informed comprehension of what a democratic republic is supposed to be about, or any sort of knowledge about or interest in economics, finance, social policy, technology, planning etc etc etc.

    It's basically a massive case of arrested development. Ireland in many ways socially and intellectually is firmly stuck in a pre-Guttenberg medieval ignorant peasant and tribal mindset. The "us and them" mentality made us stick with the Romans while we were trying to get the English out, and this meant the entire intellectual, political and philosophical development in Europe from the Renaissance through the Reformation to the Enlightenment largely completely passed Ireland by....and the country still hasn't caught up. Partly this is geographical, being stuck in the middle of nowhere in the shadow of a large country which seems to intellectually cut us off from the rest of the world, partly it's just the sheer bloodyminded stubborn pig-ignorant ultraconservatism and refusal to countenance different ideas that infests the culture.

    The Irish are a bizarre relic of 14th century feudal, agrarian, Church-dominated, anti-intellectual reactionary Europe adrift on the 21st century seas.
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