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TheOtherDave comments on Our Phyg Is Not Exclusive Enough - Less Wrong Discussion

25 [deleted] 14 April 2012 09:08PM

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Comment author: TheOtherDave 15 April 2012 06:24:55AM 14 points [-]

My $0.02 (apologies if it's already been said; I haven't read all the comments): wanting to do Internet-based outreach and get new people participating is kind of at odds with wanting to create an specialized advanced-topics forum where we're not constantly rehashing introductory topics. They're both fine goals, but trying to do both at once doesn't work well.

LW as it is currently set up seems better optimized for outreach than for being an advanced-topics forum. At the same time, LW doesn't want to devolve to the least common denominator of the Internet. This creates tension. I'm about .6 confident that tension is intentional.

Of course, nothing stops any of us from creating invitation-only fora to which only the folks whose contributions we enjoy are invited. To be honest, I've always assumed that there exist a variety of more LW-spinoff private forums where the folks who have more specialized/advanced groundings get to interact without being bothered by the rest of us.

Somewhat relatedly, one feature I miss from the bad old usenet days is kill files. I suspect that I would value LW more if I had the ability to conceal-by-default comments by certain users here. Concealing sufficiently downvoted comments is similar in principle, but not reliable in practice.

Comment author: Wei_Dai 15 April 2012 07:58:20PM 10 points [-]

I suspect that I would value LW more if I had the ability to conceal-by-default comments by certain users here.

My LessWrong Power Reader has a feature that allows you to mark authors as liked/disliked, which helps to determine which comments are expanded vs collapsed. Right now the weights are set so that if you've disliked an author, then any comment written by him or her that has 0 points or less, along with any descendants of that comment, will be collapsed by default. Each comment in the collapsed thread still has a visible header with author and points and color-coding to help you determine whether you still want to check it out.

Comment author: John_Maxwell_IV 15 April 2012 08:35:33PM *  4 points [-]

And for discussion and top-level posts, there is already the friends feature:

http://lesswrong.com/prefs/friends/

(You can also add someone as a friend from their user page.)

There is something that appeals to me about this "roll your own exclusive forum" approach.

Comment author: Bugmaster 16 April 2012 09:40:09AM 1 point [-]

I am ashamed to say that I had no idea about the Friends feature. Thanks !

Comment author: TheOtherDave 16 April 2012 02:15:32AM 3 points [-]

(blink)

You are my new favorite person.
I am, admittedly, fickle.

Comment author: Armok_GoB 17 April 2012 02:38:33PM 4 points [-]

I have tried, and failed, to launch elitist spinof subcomunities like that multiple times.

Comment author: TheOtherDave 17 April 2012 02:55:33PM 1 point [-]

To what do you attribute the failures?

Comment author: Armok_GoB 17 April 2012 08:43:52PM 1 point [-]

Lack of interest, lack of exposure, lack of momentum.

Comment author: Percent_Carbon 15 April 2012 10:09:47AM 5 points [-]

This creates tension. I'm about .6 confident that tension is intentional.

You're suggesting a strategy of tension?

To be honest, I've always assumed that there exist a variety of more LW-spinoff private forums where the folks who have more specialized/advanced groundings get to interact without being bothered by the rest of us.

Aw. And they didn't invite nyan_sandwich. That's so sad.

He or she should get together with other people who haven't been invited to Even Less Wrong and form their own. Then one day they can get together with Even Less Wrong like some NFL/AFL merger, only with more power to save the world.

There would have to be a semaphore or something, somewhere. So these secret groups can let each other know they exist without tipping off the newbs.

Comment author: Percent_Carbon 16 April 2012 04:38:20AM 5 points [-]

There's probably no need for the groups to signal each other's existence.

When a new Secret Even Less Wrong is formed, members are previously formed Secret Even Less Wrongs who are still participating in Less Wrong are likely to receive secret invites to the new Secret Even Less Wrong.

Nyan_sandwich might set up his secret Google Group or whatever, invite the people he feels are worthy and willing to form the core of his own Secret Even Less Wrong, and receive in reply an invite to an existing Secret Even Less Wrong.

That might have already happened!

Comment author: TheOtherDave 15 April 2012 03:48:43PM 4 points [-]

You're suggesting a strategy of tension?

Nothing nearly that Macchiavelian, more of a strategy of homeostasis through dynamic equilibrium.

Comment author: cousin_it 23 January 2018 12:53:50PM 0 points [-]

LW's period of fastest growth was due to Eliezer's posts that were accessible and advanced (and entertaining, etc.) Encouraging other people to do work like that could be more promising than splitting the goals as you propose.