For new community stuff, my current plan is to have:
- Critical Fallibilism website with curated articles (likely jekyll, wordpress or ghost)
- Critical Fallibilism forum, publicly viewable, $20 for an account that can post (Discourse is the leading candidate)
- Critical Fallibilism youtube channel
- maybe a new email newsletter setup (or have a way to get email notifications about new articles). or maybe keep using current email newsletter or kill it.
Currently planning to name it Critical Fallibilism b/c that sounds like the name of a philosophy. It has downsides (particularly it could sound too sophisticated and intimidate people). I considered some other names but I think an "ism" that sounds like a philosophy is better overall than something like "Learn, Judge, Act" or "Decisive Arguments" cuz ppl won't immediately know what that is. Those don't really work as a brand name either.
Plan is other stuff goes mostly inactive, e.g. Discord, FI google group and curi.us. I think people misuse chatrooms to try to say stuff that should be on a forum, so I'm inclined to just not have a chatroom in order to better focus all discussion in one place.
Taking suggestions on what website software to use and taking offers of help.
If making suggestions, FYI one of the main requirements for stuff is markdown support.
The purpose of paywalling forum posting is to increase quality and keep out harassers, not to make meaningful amounts of money.
I want somewhere good to discuss long term with good features. I think custom software is too much work and isn't going to happen. (Some coding help offers fell through. I don't want to spend the time to code a lot of features myself. I could code something simple like curi.us myself but I think getting modern features is a better plan.)
I plan to have different subforums. Current concept is something like:
- Unbounded Critical Discussion
- Casual, Gentle Learning
- Technical Details
- Elliot's articles
That's 2 main areas with 3 subforums in each, and then 2 additional subforums.
"Casual, Gentle Learning" name is to be decided (suggestions welcome). The point is to have a section for more criticism and analysis of what ppl say and do (e.g. social dynamics, memes and dishonesty that they do), where you can't control critical tangents, discussions don't get ignored or forgotten after some time passes. etc. And a section for ppl (or specific topics) who don't want to deal with that and want to just arbitrarily, casually drop discussions, ignore relevant discussion continuations, ask a question and never follow up, not do Paths Forward, act socially normally etc.
A different way to view the distinction is a section limited to socially normal criticism and a section for rational criticism that could seem overly rude or aggressive to ppl. And persistence and criticism of things seen as tangential or irrelevant to the original topic are two of the main ways that comes up. In Gentle, if ppl wanna drop an issue they can just drop it. In Unbounded, you can't just drop a discussion and make a new topic about something else. If you post a new thread, ppl might respond about the pattern of not finishing discussions then creating new threads, but in Gentle they won't do that.
Unbounded is the section where discussions can involve reading a book and then coming back and continuing. It's where people might actually do whatever is effective to seek the truth without putting any arbitrary limits on it.
Part of the point – which I know ppl don't want – is to label who is actually presenting serious ideas in the public square for consideration as the best existing ideas, and who is not making serious claims meant to contribute to human knowledge. People want ambiguity about how good or serious their posts are.
Anyway I'll try to come up with a reasonably tactful but also reasonably clear way to explain the distinction for the forum.
"Technical Details" is meant for stuff that isn't of general interest or isn't accessible to everyone, e.g. posts involving coding or math (that way Main only has stuff for everyone). I'm not sure if having that subforum exist is necessary/worthwhile or not. I don't have that separation in the unbounded forum b/c topics there have no boundaries on what could be included – in other words, whatever topic you bring up, you can't know in advance that replies won't use math.
The "Other" sections will allow off-topic discussion, including politics, food, music and gaming. Main will allow a lot of topics but not everything. You could post about food, music or gaming in Main if your post had explicit philosophical analysis and learning stuff, so it was really obviously relevant to a rationality forum. But if you wanna talk about those things at all normally just put it in Other. I think abstract political philosophy or economics would be OK in Main but no discussions about current political news or events – those have to go in Other (or Debate).
I plan to post less in the Casual section than the Unbounded section. I want to have somewhere I can do share my full critical analysis of stuff. I plan to restrict that criticism to:
- public figures
- publications (books, articles, serious blogs)
- public examples (reddit threads, tweets, casual blogs). i could omit the name and link cuz i don't wanna get them any negative attention but i like sources, context and giving credit, so undecided on the best way to handle this. (suggestions?)
- stuff posted in the Unbounded section
And I also plan to check with people who are new to that section that they know what they're consenting to and let them back out and be like "nevermind I'll go use the gentle section". I think just "this person posted in this section" isn't enough for nubs and they should be asked too before getting full crit. I'll also have a general recommendation written somewhere that new posters who aren't familiar with the community should use the Gentle section for at least a month.
One awkwardness is people might consent to receive criticism but then want to back out after receiving some criticism, but I don't want to delete analysis that's already written, nor do I want to stop analyzing something if I started posting analysis and thinking it through and still have more to say, nor do I want to stop other people from taking an interest, responding to my analysis, starting their own analysis, etc. after critical analysis has begun. Thoughts on how to handle that? (Note: I hope to disable deleting posts and/or save version history.) Maybe once there is an example of what ppl don't like, we can make ppl say they've read it and are OK with it b4 they can post in Unbounded.
Hopefully the casual/gentle section will provide most of what people wanted from a chatroom while being way better organized.