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Old 26th August 2013, 07:53 PM   #81
Manopolus
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Originally Posted by colander View Post
It doesn't seem like you've done anything here besides reiterating your initial assertion. I recommend instead that you provide readers with a link to empirical research that supports your claim.
I wonder... could you even admit that the way that things are marketed to men vastly differs from the way that things are marketed to women... perhaps even loosely related to the lines in which I describe, without resorting to this sort of ridiculous behavior?

Admittedly, there may be less reason to do things this way than advertisers presume, but I would tend to assume that it is done because it at least seems to work. I have no desire to sift through several pages of irrelevant google results (my only reference available) to find something that I see as quite obvious. I have actually tried a few key words, but what I came up with was a lot of unrelated crap.

Unfortunately, the next thing is... after I actually do that, people will next resort to calling me down for cherry picking things that fit my conclusions.

You see the problem is: Once challenged in this way, there is absolutely no "win" in the situation, and you damn well know it. Why don't you just tell me I'm wrong and explain why you think this is the case... rather than intentionally placing me in a no-win situation that pretty much ruins all reasonable dialogue? I've seen this multiple times before... I'm not new to this at all. I know exactly how this sort of behavior functions on this forum.


Originally Posted by colander View Post
Just as an aside, it is my understanding that there exists no historical documentation that supports the attribution of this quote to Freud.
Fair enough. I'd heard it in an actual psych class, but a quick search shows that it first showed up in 1954, years after his death.

Last edited by Manopolus; 26th August 2013 at 08:20 PM.
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Old 27th August 2013, 07:19 AM   #82
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Originally Posted by Manopolus View Post
I wonder... could you even admit that the way that things are marketed to men vastly differs from the way that things are marketed to women... perhaps even loosely related to the lines in which I describe, without resorting to this sort of ridiculous behavior?
Yes, many products are marketed differently to women than to men. That, however, does not prove your assertion that women are more interested in "unquantifiable social relationships" than "observable facts and material challenges".

In fact, I'd argue that I could find quite a few female members of this board who are far more interested in the latter, and quite a few male members who are more interested in the former.

Quote:
Admittedly, there may be less reason to do things this way than advertisers presume, but I would tend to assume that it is done because it at least seems to work. I have no desire to sift through several pages of irrelevant google results (my only reference available) to find something that I see as quite obvious. I have actually tried a few key words, but what I came up with was a lot of unrelated crap.
Much as your own argument here is entirely unrelated, I'd say.

Quote:
Unfortunately, the next thing is... after I actually do that, people will next resort to calling me down for cherry picking things that fit my conclusions.
Nope. I'm calling you out for an absolutely irrelevant argument that does not support or prove your claims in any manner whatsoever.

Quote:
You see the problem is: Once challenged in this way, there is absolutely no "win" in the situation, and you damn well know it. Why don't you just tell me I'm wrong and explain why you think this is the case... rather than intentionally placing me in a no-win situation that pretty much ruins all reasonable dialogue? I've seen this multiple times before... I'm not new to this at all. I know exactly how this sort of behavior functions on this forum.
Then you should be aware that the kind of argument you're making will immediately be challenged. "I won't present any actual proof of my position, because if I do so, I'll be attacked for it. Instead, I'll make an unrelated claim, then insist that it somehow supports my assertion".

Or, alternatively -- and always one of my favorite arguments from those who can't support their claims -- is the whole "I made the claim first, but I have no need to prove it, if you disagree, then you have to prove it's false." I know that you've spent quite a bit of time on these boards, so you should be aware of just how lame that particular argument is.

Now, to illustrate my point about the complete irrelevance of your argument above, let's say that I were to claim that women are more likely to be attracted to the number 12, while men are more likely to be attracted to the number 14. And I then made the argument, as you have above, that obviously marketers take different approaches to men than they do to women, and that supports my assertion that they prefer different numbers.

The problem here is that there is a huge, gaping, logical fallacy involved. Yes, women are marketed to differently than men. But that doesn't in any manner, shape, or form mean that the specific difference that you claim between the two groups is true. No moreso than my claim about preferences for different numbers. Quite the opposite, I can easily cite examples from specific marketing strategies for men and women that would demonstrate the exact opposite. Consider marketing cars. When marketing to women, it is concrete facts and figures that they tend to be more interested in -- specifically, the car's safety, it's fuel consumption, etc. Women, especially those with children, tend to place a very high priority on concrete, objective factors such as how safe the car is, how much fuel it consumes, etc.

Men, on the other hand, respond much more to an emotional appeal. How powerful the car will make them feel. Or how attractive women will find them. Or how fast they can go. Or how cool they'll look. And all those scantily clad hot women they have standing around the cars at car shows...I assure you, they're not there to cause an emotional/hormonal reaction from the women.

So, again -- no. Your argument about differences in marketing to men and women doesn't even take the first, tiniest step towards substantiating your claim. And, like the poster before me, I'll challenge you to give actual proof of your assertion, rather than personal anecdotes and unrelated claims.

And if you're afraid of people jumping all over you, or being in a no-win situation, may I suggest that the strategy you've employed thus far in this "debate" (and I use that term rather loosely) is probably not the optimal one.
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Old 27th August 2013, 04:47 PM   #83
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Originally Posted by Manopolus View Post
I wonder... could you even admit that the way that things are marketed to men vastly differs from the way that things are marketed to women... perhaps even loosely related to the lines in which I describe, without resorting to this sort of ridiculous behavior?

Admittedly, there may be less reason to do things this way than advertisers presume, but I would tend to assume that it is done because it at least seems to work. I have no desire to sift through several pages of irrelevant google results (my only reference available) to find something that I see as quite obvious. I have actually tried a few key words, but what I came up with was a lot of unrelated crap.
Has it occurred to you yet that making proclamations alleging some vaguely-defined mental infirmity on the part of an entire gender is the sort of thing that one ought not to do unless one actually has at one's disposal solid research with which to support one's point? I'd venture to guess that your lousy discursive conduct does little to draw either women or empiricists towards any movement you profess to represent. Perhaps you should consider switching sides.

Quote:
Unfortunately, the next thing is... after I actually do that, people will next resort to calling me down for cherry picking things that fit my conclusions.

You see the problem is: Once challenged in this way, there is absolutely no "win" in the situation, and you damn well know it. Why don't you just tell me I'm wrong and explain why you think this is the case... rather than intentionally placing me in a no-win situation that pretty much ruins all reasonable dialogue? I've seen this multiple times before... I'm not new to this at all. I know exactly how this sort of behavior functions on this forum.
Is that so. Tell me, Manopolus: is there any exchange that could possibly occur that would result in you admitting to yourself that your intuitions on this topic don't seem to have a basis in objective, measurable fact? (Don't worry, it is okay if your answer is "no!" After all, that means that you will always win! Hooray for victory!)

Last edited by colander; 27th August 2013 at 05:20 PM.
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Old 27th August 2013, 07:29 PM   #84
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Originally Posted by colander View Post
[...]
Just as an aside, it is my understanding that there exists no historical documentation that supports the attribution of this quote to Freud.
Macht es nichts.

Freudian hypotheses have been held in low esteem for many decades. They are not falsifiable and are therefore not part of science.
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Old 28th August 2013, 06:35 AM   #85
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Come on people, it's not like Manopolus has pulled this out of his behind. There've been numerous threads on here (long before all the elevatorgate stuff) that acknowledged there was a definite difference in the propensity for particular genders to be interested in different things even if we didn't determine why that was.

There also seems to be a difference in the types of woo that different genders find attractive - mediums etc attracting more women (just look at the make-up of the average audience - it's hugely skewed) with conspiracy theories, cryptozoology, UFOs etc attracting more men.

It's not a huge leap (though by no means the right answer or the only answer - I suspect it's down to a combination of things) to think that may be related to the established differences between male and female brains eg language skills better in women, processing equally split across both hemispheres, greater development in areas concerned with emotions, feeling, social cohesion, co-operation etc with men on the other hand, better spatial awareness, earlier development of the parts of the brain used in maths and other logic processing*, tendency to competition etc.

Reinforce that with society's gender stereotyping and surely we all acknowledge there is a tendency (obviously with lots of exceptions) for women to tend towards different things and not a huge stretch (backed by all our real life experience if we admit it) to Manopolus' pov.

And I speak as the father of 2 girls who are both atheist scientists (my other two kids are too young to categorise) but even I see this general gender split across society as a whole.

Now we can argue / debate the reasons why but are we really demanding proof that this tendency split exists?

*The theory is that this creates an early impression that boys are better at maths than girls as they are taught at the same rate and then that impression itself reinforces the behaviour later even when that part of the female brain has caught up and there are no longer any biological differences. Interestingly tests showed that boys outperformed girls when each were told the maths test was better suited to boys and then boys subsequently underperformed in similar tests when they thought they were being pitted against Asian students (the perception being that Asian students are better at maths). Interesting stuff from 1 minutes Googling...
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Old 28th August 2013, 08:25 AM   #86
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Originally Posted by Ethan Thane Athen View Post
Come on people, it's not like Manopolus has pulled this out of his behind.
On the contrary, that appears to be exactly what he's done. But at least now he won't be lonely, as you have newly joined him in the "Citations are hard; and anyway, can't you just feel how right I am?" club. Do you actually have evidence to support the specific claim that Manopolus has made? That claim was, if you recall, that women are relative to men more concerned with feelings than with facts.

I feel compelled to remind you that his "marketing" blort was merely a stream-of-consciousness meandatory sidestep away from the original context in which his claim was made; namely, as a basis for presuming the validity of his co-claims that

1) womens' "thinking differences" are the primary reason that they are currently under-represented in the prominent skeptical movements in both membership and leadership,

2) increasing the number of female speakers invited to present lectures on the skeptical conference circuit will be of no particular help in rectifying the gender imbalance in the membership,

and

3) (this one is my personal favorite) surely there is no need at all to speculate on the possible existence of any other factors in play re: behavior on the part of movement adherents and leaders which might put women ill at ease.

Is this a viewpoint you wish to add your voice in support of, good Ethan?

Last edited by colander; 28th August 2013 at 09:57 AM.
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Old 28th August 2013, 09:29 AM   #87
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Originally Posted by colander View Post
On the contrary, that appears to be exactly what he's done. But at least now he won't be lonely, as you have newly joined him in the "Citations are hard; and anyway, can't you just feel how right I am?" club. Do you actually have evidence to support the specific claim that Manopolus has made, that women are relative to men more concerned with feelings than with facts?

I feel compelled to remind you that his "marketing" blort was drawn from a stream-of-consciousness meandery sidestep away from the original context in which his claim was made: that womens' "thinking differences" are the primary reason that they are currently severely under-represented in the prominent skeptical movements in both membership and leadership, that increasing women's numbers in the leadership will be of no particular help in rectifying the gender imbalance in the membership, and (this one is my personal favorite) that surely there is no need at all to speculate on the possible existence of any other factors in play re: behavior on the part of movement adherents and leaders which might put women ill at ease.

Is this a viewpoint you wish to add your voice in support of, good Ethan?
Howabout you first provide your evidence that behaviour that puts women ill at ease is more common then it is in other parts of society?
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Old 28th August 2013, 01:25 PM   #88
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Originally Posted by Amazer View Post
Howabout you first provide your evidence that behaviour that puts women ill at ease is more common then it is in other parts of society?
I am not sure where you're from, but in the society in which I spend most of my time, somebody who concludes a pre-noon discussion with "... of course, that's because women care less about facts than men do. Everyone knows that! Now who wants to go grab lunch?" will be eating their meal from the vending machine that day. Alone.

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Old 28th August 2013, 03:01 PM   #89
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...more rigorously, the simple fact that there exists a gender imbalance in an organization will in and of itself have a deleterious effect on the ability of women to successfully integrate themselves within that system. This effect has been amply documented in many social settings. Here's a particularly instructive example from an HR journal, whose abstract I provide below (my bolding):

Quote:
"Gender mix and organisational fit: how gender imbalance at different levels of the organisation impacts on women managers", Women In Management Review, Vol. 15 Iss: 1, pp.5 - 18

This paper explores the impact of the numerical distribution of women at different levels of the organisation on the experiences of women managers. It aims to build on work in this area which argues that gender imbalance creates an organisational culture that is hostile or resistant to women. Findings of a research project on women managers, on the significance of gender mix for barriers experienced and on women’s sense of “organisational fit” are discussed. Gender mix was found to be an important factor determining career progress. The hierarchical level at which gender imbalances occur is also considered. When gender imbalance at the top (with men in the majority) is combined with greater sex integration further down the hierarchy, women experience greater “fit” within the organisation than when that gender imbalance permeates all management levels. At the same time, an integrated top management team in terms of gender mix is possibly the single most important factor in creating a culture in which women feel comfortable and valued.
Gasp! People present within organizations as part of the minority feel less supported than those who comprise the majority? Why, who would have ever guessed! Too, I note with mock surprise that these results run starkly counter to Manopolus's derptastic musings that greater gender integration at an org's top will do nothing to make women on the ground level feel more comfortable.

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Old 28th August 2013, 04:46 PM   #90
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TAM, the JREF, and the skeptical community are not managers Colander. There was a gender imbalance at TAM and many other skeptical events. The JREF made an effort to put more female speakers on the schedule as they needed to. And way back when the Skepchicks were normal, they also brought a lot of women into the community. (I should note that one means of doing that was to break down the barrier between geek and attractive, like promoting that it is sexy to be in science, but that's another issue.)

So the problem was easily identifiable, more men than women at TAM. But you need more than to know what is wrong, you need to know why it's that way if you want to correct it. Adding women speakers was one easy fix. JREF chose the speakers. That provided the solution.

But as for the attendees, it was claimed with very little evidence and most of that was anecdotal that sexism and rude male behavior objectifying women at TAM was the reason there were so few women there.

Never mind men and women both sometimes want to meet members they might be attracted to at conferences. Never mind the proportion of women was growing not shrinking. Never mind it was Vegas and people drink and sometimes act stupid. Never mind the Skepchicks themselves promoted drunken parties. And never mind some of the anecdotes turned out to be false rumors, and the claim the admin did nothing about complaints was false.

The real reason there were more men than women at TAM was a multi-causal problem. There was never any evidence a substantial reason was the objectification of women that Watson and her camp made it out to be.

They had an opportunity to call attention to the incidents that did occur like commenting on a certain speaker's breasts being disrespectful. They had an opportunity to explain why they were changing their past behavior and would no longer be doing the nude calendars or the brothel themed parties.

Instead they became extremists with a cause, everything skepticism is against. They exaggerated the claims stamping their feet saying, "See, see". They split the community apart and conflated people who did not agree with the radical feminist view with the anonymous bloggers sending rape/hate mail to Watson.


Sorry, your HR manual doesn't apply to this situation, or at least that section doesn't.
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Old 28th August 2013, 04:53 PM   #91
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Though its not *exactly* what manopolus claimed, there is plenty of research showing that women are more skilled at empathizing, and men more skilled at systemizing. The different skill levels are probably reflected in preferences too, so that on average, women will be more interested in feelings and empathy with regard to a particular topic, whereas men (on average) will be more interested in analysing, classifying and inferring rules etc. I suppose thats not too far from the claim that women are more interested in how they feel about things, and men are more interested in facts (I think that was the original claim, but I'm too lazy to go back and look).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empathi...emizing_theory

The empathizing/systemizing dimensions are fundamental to Baron-Cohen's "extreme male brain" theory about autism.

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/310/5749/819.short

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Old 28th August 2013, 05:03 PM   #92
Skeptic Ginger
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Originally Posted by Professor Yaffle View Post
Though its not *exactly* what manopolus claimed, there is plenty of research showing that women are more skilled at empathizing, and men more skilled at systemizing. The different skill levels are probably reflected in preferences too, so that on average, women will be more interested in feelings and empathy with regard to a particular topic, whereas men (on average) will be more interested in analysing, classifying and inferring rules etc. I suppose thats not too far from the claim that women are more interested in how they feel about things, and men are more interested in facts (I think that was the original claim, but I'm too lazy to go back and look).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empathi...emizing_theory

The empathizing/systemizing dimensions are fundamental to Baron-Cohen's "extreme male brain" theory about autism.

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/310/5749/819.short
I, for one, embrace my biological difference.

I think you've said it more precisely.

This was not right at all:
Originally Posted by Manopolus
they are more interested in questions of unquantifiable social relationships (does he really love you? Take our survey and find out!) than they are of observable facts and material challenges
Definitely not.
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Old 28th August 2013, 06:58 PM   #93
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Originally Posted by Professor Yaffle View Post
Though its not *exactly* what manopolus claimed, there is plenty of research showing that women are more skilled at empathizing, and men more skilled at systemizing. The different skill levels are probably reflected in preferences too, so that on average, women will be more interested in feelings and empathy with regard to a particular topic, whereas men (on average) will be more interested in analysing, classifying and inferring rules etc. I suppose thats not too far from the claim that women are more interested in how they feel about things, and men are more interested in facts (I think that was the original claim, but I'm too lazy to go back and look).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empathi...emizing_theory

The empathizing/systemizing dimensions are fundamental to Baron-Cohen's "extreme male brain" theory about autism.

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/310/5749/819.short
Oh, sure! Be the voice of sanity in this soap-box-derby of a discussion!

Imagine if Manopolus had said the opposite. That it was clear that women are just as incapable of empathy as men, and were as prone to insisting on facts and evidence and would discount any anecdotal or emotional input in a serious discussion... it's a known fact. What would the reaction have been from the "ilks"?

As Ginger kinda/sorta said, most feminists I know acknowledge these little differences on a general level and do actually celebrate them to an extent. Maybe it's a "special bunny" pleading, but it's something you'll see throughout discussions.
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Old 29th August 2013, 02:40 AM   #94
Ethan Thane Athen
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Originally Posted by colander View Post
On the contrary, that appears to be exactly what he's done. But at least now he won't be lonely, as you have newly joined him in the "Citations are hard; and anyway, can't you just feel how right I am?" club. Do you actually have evidence to support the specific claim that Manopolus has made? That claim was, if you recall, that women are relative to men more concerned with feelings than with facts.

I feel compelled to remind you that his "marketing" blort was merely a stream-of-consciousness meandatory sidestep away from the original context in which his claim was made; namely, as a basis for presuming the validity of his co-claims that

1) womens' "thinking differences" are the primary reason that they are currently under-represented in the prominent skeptical movements in both membership and leadership,

2) increasing the number of female speakers invited to present lectures on the skeptical conference circuit will be of no particular help in rectifying the gender imbalance in the membership,

and

3) (this one is my personal favorite) surely there is no need at all to speculate on the possible existence of any other factors in play re: behavior on the part of movement adherents and leaders which might put women ill at ease.

Is this a viewpoint you wish to add your voice in support of, good Ethan?
I'll ignore the thinly veiled insults as I'm trying to have a serious debate (in which I am happy to be proven wrong) rather than falling into the 'Don't dare suggest any differences between the genders 'cos that means you hate women' nonsense that seems increasingly prevalent on this forum...

Here are a couple of the links I referred to in my post. I didn't post them initially because I assumed these differences were generally well known:

http://science.howstuffworks.com/lif...nt-brains1.htm

http://www.webmd.com/balance/feature...-brains-differ

I also still maintain that there are self-evident (happy to be shown my perceptions are wrong but am currently surprised that people don't share them) general societal trends of difference between the likes and dislikes of the genders - Manopolus' point on advertising is a case in point (though it may well represent a circular cause and effect, advertisers are not dummies and rely on the efficacy of their work). These are gradually breaking down (women at football matches in the UK etc - though I venture to suggest that the majority of the audience for Match of the Day will still be men), suggesting a large element is simply societal rather than actually gender defined and obviously there have always been significant exceptions.

Do I really need citations to prove that the audience at a medium show is predominantly women (and women of a certain age at that)? If so, then when I find the time, I will look into that as perceptions can be really misleading and I accept that, but do you honestly think that is not the case - or have you simply never viewed the audience at any of the various psychic tv shows (Van Pragh or Edwards or whoever)? Do I really need evidence to back my assertion that men are more likely to watch Match of the Day than women or that women are more likely to watch Dancing on Ice or soap operas than men? I am genuinely surprised, I thought these general trends we well recognised even if the exact reasons for them may be disputed / complex.
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Old 29th August 2013, 02:52 AM   #95
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As an addenda, I am going to a comic convention on the weekend. I can guarantee that the men there will far out-number the women (even though my particular group will be 2 male, 3 female).

I listen to heavy metal music - I assert that the average audience will contain far more men (especially teenage boys) than women. Yet I also recognise that Morrigan (who I believe is female) is more expert and active in the genre than I am.

The general trends remain self-evident to me though, hence my surprise at the dispute over what seemed obvious differences in taste / interest between the genders and certainly predates 'elevatorgate' etc so may well be a more likely explanation of the differences in representation at TAM etc.

Now the exact reasons for this difference in areas of interest, now there's an area for discussion, but the fact there are differences? Sorry, I am genuinely surprised that you dispute that - though, as I say, I am happy to be proven wrong (and my perceptions have been in the past).
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Old 29th August 2013, 09:05 AM   #96
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Originally Posted by Ethan Thane Athen View Post
...

Do I really need citations to prove that the audience at a medium show is predominantly women (and women of a certain age at that)? If so, then when I find the time, I will look into that as perceptions can be really misleading and I accept that, but do you honestly think that is not the case - or have you simply never viewed the audience at any of the various psychic tv shows (Van Pragh or Edwards or whoever)? Do I really need evidence to back my assertion that men are more likely to watch Match of the Day than women or that women are more likely to watch Dancing on Ice or soap operas than men? I am genuinely surprised, I thought these general trends we well recognised even if the exact reasons for them may be disputed / complex.
I don't think you can directly conflate cultural norms with biological norms.

Women may want to talk to dead loved ones but a lot of the men at the sporting events are following silly superstitious rituals to assure their team wins. I think being fooled by a cold reading (if one is not aware of how it works) is more rational than being fooled by a coincidence that the presence of a goat affects a ball game.

I don't deny there are biological differences, clearly there are. But one should be a tad more cautious before declaring what those differences mean.
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Old 29th August 2013, 10:11 AM   #97
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
I don't deny there are biological differences, clearly there are. But one should be a tad more cautious before declaring what those differences mean.
This.

I agree that there are gender differences. I don't think it's a bad thing necessarily if a particular movement skews to one gender. I just think we should be really careful about any generalizations that fall into the category of "it's totally obvious, no evidence needed".

Last edited by iknownothing; 29th August 2013 at 10:13 AM.
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Old 29th August 2013, 10:39 AM   #98
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
I think being fooled by a cold reading (if one is not aware of how it works) is more rational than being fooled by a coincidence that the presence of a goat affects a ball game.
Ha - that's nothing on the difference it makes whether I'm watching or not. Now that makes a difference. Coincidence my (lucky goat) foot!
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Old 29th August 2013, 11:17 AM   #99
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
Sorry, your HR manual doesn't apply to this situation, or at least that section doesn't.
What basis have you for declaring its irrelevancy? What the article details is that skewed gender ratios in organizations, particularly at higher levels but also at lower levels, create environments where the minority gender is made to feel less comfortable. That this effect exists is not in question. It has been observed in academia, medicine, law, accounting, and pretty much every other setting in which large numbers of people interact with each other, and there is no reason to suppose that the skeptical community is somehow immune to this effect.

And since the general-interest skeptical community has lost by attrition to various splinter factions a large number of people who consider themselves feminist sympathizers, it follows that the membership left behind will be proportionally enriched in those who have no particular care for women's concerns. Likewise, the splinter factions will house the majority of those who feel their complaints regarding the general movement have been ignored, and with each defection, venturers from each side will be met with a greater fraction of unthinking jeers on the other.

If there is a way to repair this rift, I dare say it will not be found until those on both sides are willing to admit that in the mass of the complaints leveled against them by their counterparts, there may be some whose validity is worth considering.

Last edited by colander; 29th August 2013 at 11:20 AM.
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Old 29th August 2013, 12:37 PM   #100
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Originally Posted by colander View Post
What basis have you for declaring its irrelevancy?
Any chance you could reply to why I said it didn't apply instead of just declaring I said nothing to support what I said? It would help to move the discourse forward.



Originally Posted by colander View Post
What the article details is that skewed gender ratios in organizations, particularly at higher levels but also at lower levels, create environments where the minority gender is made to feel less comfortable.
Well I'm female and I never felt the least bit uncomfortable at TAM. I was not discriminated against when my talk was chosen for the short Sunday presentations.

A fair number of women that are very involved in the JREF and TAM also begged to differ with the Watson crowd, even going so far as to protest the issue.

Of course, a certain tee shirt statement was seen as t-shirt bullying.

You are claiming women feel uncomfortable being outnumbered "in the work place"! This was not a workplace. You have no data, nor did the Skepchick crowd making the accusation, that accusations of sexism was anything more than a manufactured insult.


Originally Posted by colander View Post
That this effect exists is not in question. It has been observed in academia, medicine, law, accounting, and pretty much every other setting in which large numbers of people interact with each other, and there is no reason to suppose that the skeptical community is somehow immune to this effect.
This is very faulty logic. Because A exists in some Bs you are assuming A exists in all Bs.

I, for one, looked for the data specific to TAM. There were a couple incidents, nothing widespread, and tame for a large conference with alcohol consumption by some accounts.

You are operating on an untested assumption as far as the skeptical community is concerned.


Originally Posted by colander View Post
And since the general-interest skeptical community has lost by attrition to various splinter factions a large number of people who consider themselves feminist sympathizers, it follows that the membership left behind will be proportionally enriched in those who have no particular care for women's concerns. Likewise, the splinter factions will house the majority of those who feel their complaints regarding the general movement have been ignored, and with each defection, venturers from each side will be met with a greater fraction of unthinking jeers on the other.

If there is a way to repair this rift, I dare say it will not be found until those on both sides are willing to admit that in the mass of the complaints leveled against them by their counterparts, there may be some whose validity is worth considering.
The rift was created by an extremist view. The extremists weren't satisfied even though the JREF Admin tried. Nothing short of adopting a radical feminist POV was satisfactory to the group.

As an example of misplaced extremism, they wanted Dawkins banned because he dared disagree with Watson. A lot of us disagreed with Watson and we weren't all PWMs.

Look at the response in that article because Dr Hall dared to disagree with the unsupported allegations that sexism was rampant at TAM.
Quote:
She is obviously a "gender traitor," and this, dear reader, is nothing more than "horrible T-shirt bullying."
A gender traitor? For expressing her opinion that sexism was not rampant under every rock.
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Old 29th August 2013, 12:51 PM   #101
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Originally Posted by colander View Post
What basis have you for declaring its irrelevancy? What the article details is that skewed gender ratios in organizations, particularly at higher levels but also at lower levels, create environments where the minority gender is made to feel less comfortable. That this effect exists is not in question. It has been observed in academia, medicine, law, accounting, and pretty much every other setting in which large numbers of people interact with each other, and there is no reason to suppose that the skeptical community is somehow immune to this effect.
Seems reasonable.

Quote:
And since the general-interest skeptical community has lost by attrition to various splinter factions a large number of people who consider themselves feminist sympathizers, it follows that the membership left behind will be proportionally enriched in those who have no particular care for women's concerns. Likewise, the splinter factions will house the majority of those who feel their complaints regarding the general movement have been ignored, and with each defection, venturers from each side will be met with a greater fraction of unthinking jeers on the other.
Has the general-interest skeptical community lost a large number of people? Can you give us a ball park figure of how many people have been lost and how many people make up this general-interest skeptic community? At the moment, to me, it just seems that we are dealing with a rather small, albeit very vocal, group of dissidents.

Quote:
If there is a way to repair this rift, I dare say it will not be found until those on both sides are willing to admit that in the mass of the complaints leveled against them by their counterparts, there may be some whose validity is worth considering.
Well, as (former) skeptics the group of defectors should be pretty well aware what is required before skeptics in the larger community will be swayed on this issue.
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Old 29th August 2013, 03:07 PM   #102
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
I don't think you can directly conflate cultural norms with biological norms.

Women may want to talk to dead loved ones but a lot of the men at the sporting events are following silly superstitious rituals to assure their team wins. I think being fooled by a cold reading (if one is not aware of how it works) is more rational than being fooled by a coincidence that the presence of a goat affects a ball game.

I don't deny there are biological differences, clearly there are. But one should be a tad more cautious before declaring what those differences mean.
Apologies - I thought I'd been clear that I accepted a large societal / cultural aspect eg ' suggesting a large element is simply societal rather than actually gender defined' in my post above. As I also mentioned in my first post on this thread, men seem to be equally prone to woo, just seem* to be attracted more to different forms eg UFOs, bigfoot, conspiracy theories etc.

Indeed, I was trying to focus the discussion on why the differences were there, how much (if any, though I think there is some evidence for it) may be an increased tendency due to biological differences and how much was simply cultural, rather than, as some posters seemed to be doing, trying to deny the differences were even there. Again, apologies if I wasn't clear.

*I won't push this as it is an impression only and I didn't fully follow through the thread that discussed these perceived differences.
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Old 29th August 2013, 05:39 PM   #103
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
I think being fooled by a cold reading (if one is not aware of how it works) is more rational than being fooled by a coincidence that the presence of a goat affects a ball game.
Well, that's just stupid! Everyone knows it's the rally cap and the terrible towel that win games.
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Old 2nd September 2013, 10:50 AM   #104
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
Any chance you could reply to why I said it didn't apply instead of just declaring I said nothing to support what I said? It would help to move the discourse forward.
Your reply was a long polemic diatribe containing your personal evaluation of some events that may or may not have happened the way you perceive them to have occurred. As I have not in the past observed your evaluations of such events to be either insightful or accurate, and as the aforementioned text segment contained little evidence for the validity of your interpretations but very many pejorative allusions to specific figures you view to be representative of your opposition, I feel little inclined to expend effort addressing it.



Quote:
Well I'm female and I never felt the least bit uncomfortable at TAM. I was not discriminated against when my talk was chosen for the short Sunday presentations.

A fair number of women that are very involved in the JREF and TAM also begged to differ with the Watson crowd, even going so far as to protest the issue.
So you are saying that because some people have not experienced problems, then that means that nobody has? Surely you can see how absurd that argument is.

Quote:
You are claiming women feel uncomfortable being outnumbered "in the work place"! This was not a workplace.
As a non-profit organization that employs personnel, I don't see how JREF and similar orgs don't constitute workplaces, and certainly events which occur at conferences and seminars are intimately linked to many people's careers. Further, I see no reason at all why this extremely pervasive social effect should be limited only to "workplaces". And indeed, the literature demonstrates amply that it applies to social clubs as well.


Quote:
You have no data, nor did the Skepchick crowd making the accusation, that accusations of sexism was anything more than a manufactured insult.
I hardly need a crowd of "skepchicks" to tell me that claims of sexual harassment in the skeptic community have been poorly handled by the management and derisively dismissed out-of-hand by a disturbing proportion of the community.




Quote:
This is very faulty logic. Because A exists in some Bs you are assuming A exists in all Bs.

I, for one, looked for the data specific to TAM. There were a couple incidents, nothing widespread, and tame for a large conference with alcohol consumption by some accounts.

You are operating on an untested assumption as far as the skeptical community is concerned.
You fail to understand the nature of the concerns.

The question is not merely whether there are more of these types of events in skeptical conferences than can normally be expected in a conference of this size. It is that the events that were reported do not appear to have been treated with proper gravity. This has been made abundantly clear by both PR releases and personal communications issued by top skeptical brass.

Anybody wishing to estimate the true prevalence of these events must realize that it is impossible to accurately estimate the frequency of these events from official reports alone. This is because report rates depend very heavily on how reporters expect their complaints to be received. In populations where this problem is particularly severe, this effect totally dominates---the per capita number of sexual assault reports officially registered in Israel, for example, is several orders of magnitude greater than the number reported in Egypt, and many particularly awful countries keep no such records at all. There is a point at which low sexual assault report numbers constitute a sign of pervasive and systematic problems rather than an indication that problems do not exist.


Quote:
The rift was created by an extremist view. The extremists weren't satisfied even though the JREF Admin tried. Nothing short of adopting a radical feminist POV was satisfactory to the group.

As an example of misplaced extremism, they wanted Dawkins banned because he dared disagree with Watson. A lot of us disagreed with Watson and we weren't all PWMs.

Look at the response in that article because Dr Hall dared to disagree with the unsupported allegations that sexism was rampant at TAM.
A gender traitor? For expressing her opinion that sexism was not rampant under every rock.
You argue that those expressing dissatisfaction seem to you to be "extremists" and that one of them or another has made complaints and requests that you deem unreasonable. Fair enough. Understand, however, that neither of those observations gives you a priori cause to wave your hand and declare that all such complaints must surely be invalid.

Indeed, your repeated appeals to the inherent offensiveness of what you perceive to be the ideology of your opponents make it very difficult for me to believe that your stance on this matter has been informed by a fair consideration of the arguments from each side.

Last edited by colander; 2nd September 2013 at 11:35 AM.
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Old 10th January 2014, 08:45 PM   #105
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Thought this might belong here.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg photo.JPG (58.4 KB, 33 views)
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Old 10th January 2014, 09:35 PM   #106
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A bit childish I think.
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Old 12th January 2014, 12:26 PM   #107
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Originally Posted by AdMan View Post
Thought this might belong here.
She can join PZ.
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Old 12th January 2014, 01:05 PM   #108
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Does it mean
1. She just does not like the term? She prefers to be called something else? Maybe someone who questions unsupported statements.
2. She is a woo?
3. None of the above. She is a human being and does not like labels.

The context is missing.
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Old 12th January 2014, 01:14 PM   #109
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Just found the conversation on twitter. Here is another one of her twitts.

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@RobertDunsmore1 @pzmyers Yeah, I don't mind people seeing one of my projects as skeptical. I just don't personally adopt the label.
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Old 12th January 2014, 07:00 PM   #110
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Originally Posted by rjh01 View Post
Does it mean
1. She just does not like the term? She prefers to be called something else? Maybe someone who questions unsupported statements.
2. She is a woo?
3. None of the above. She is a human being and does not like labels.

The context is missing.
"Skeptics" seem to allow the inclusion of, gasp!, conservatives and theists and deists. PZ initially objected to that and claimed to no longer be a skeptic. The echo chamber has been chiming in since then. Over on Atheism+ the "Skepticism" sub-forum is mostly "Bad stuff said by members of the skeptical community".
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Old 18th January 2014, 07:44 AM   #111
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My understanding was, she felt bad that JREF had folks money, but was not able to "put out of business" frauds like Sylvia Brown and John Edwards, as the suckers that pay them don't care about Randi's de-bunkings.

Also the hucksters are smart enough not to engage with a professional skeptic anymore. They never get to take the JREF-challenge because the response is always. "you've got be kidding, get outta here" (whereas you'd think they'd let folks take it and fail THEN condescend) BUT I don't think there's any psychics.
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Old 18th January 2014, 09:21 AM   #112
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Where did you get that understanding? If this were the case, how would that not have been obvious to her long before she took the job?

Ward
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Old 18th January 2014, 02:07 PM   #113
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True----I think she felt that what the JREF does is just not that IMPORTANT
(and for her PETA is)

Not like JREF is curing cancer.
There's always gonna be folks paying "fortune tellers' and TV-preachers and I got no sympathy for them.
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Old 19th January 2014, 05:49 PM   #114
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No, I think you should read the rest of the thread. The phrase "mission creep" was used.
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Old 17th March 2014, 02:34 PM   #115
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Just curious if they ever filled this position as I don't see it listed any longer. Perhaps that is the reason the last press release listed on the Press Center tabs is over two years old.
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Old 19th March 2014, 08:16 AM   #116
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Originally Posted by RoseMontague View Post
Just curious if they ever filled this position as I don't see it listed any longer. Perhaps that is the reason the last press release listed on the Press Center tabs is over two years old.
Had the JREF a responsive and professional Director of Communications in place we might already have had the answer and more. If they have appointed one , having lost the last two rather quickly, they clearly ain't doing their job properly.
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Old 23rd March 2014, 10:38 PM   #117
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If psychic powers really do exist, the JREF challenge is entirely winnable.
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Jadey (in RvB game thread): I just want to take a moment to commend Arth on his role as Parasitic Alien Tumor. I think he really connected with the character and there were times when I forgot that he was just acting. That's the kind of talent that you can't teach.
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Old 23rd March 2014, 11:09 PM   #118
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
If psychic powers really do exist, the JREF challenge is entirely winnable.
A fact so often missed.
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