[Apologies for a rather dry digression devoid meanie-poo-pants images (OK, there’s one), but this needed to be done. I assembled this document for one of the myriad of groups that has formed in order to resist this newly branded old idiocy from the same subnormals that brought you Elevatorgate. These suggestions are all quite serious and there’s a massive body count of folks out there that show what happens without them. Distribute this freely.]
The Dealing With Atheism+, FTB And Skepchick Survival Guide
If you are capturing data about, or wanting to engage with, any of these groups, it is important to abandon all optimism and basic goodwill you would afford to regular human beings in your day-to-day interactions. It is important to consider that many, though not all, of the people involved are –
- habitual liars that modify reality to suit on a daily basis
- subject to Myers’ Law – https://greylining.com/2011/12/01/myers-law/ – where, most simply put, anything you communicate will be misinterpreted and used against you by any means possible
- vicious, amoral sociopaths that CAN and WILL seek to harm you, your family or your friends personally and professionally by any means available. They have no capacity for civilized response to either criticism or satire and this is usually the only way they know how to respond
In general, especially when you are dealing with PZ Myers or his inner circle directly, it is a good rule of thumb to imagine the worst possible consequences of your actions – and then expect twice that in return.
The reality space that these groups occupy is markedly different to that which you are used to in that it is fluid and not static – it is in a perpetual state of flux and is continuously being modified to conform to whatever the new reality is on any given day. Blogs get silently altered, comments get tampered with etc. History, in the conventional sense, is meaningless. So when capturing data by saving links, it is strongly recommended that you also take one or more of the following steps –
- Make screen captures. Most systems now have bundled tools for this purpose
- Save the web page HTML locally. Most browsers allow you to do this
- Make a mirror of the web page. Some good sites for doing this are: Webcite http://www.webcitation.org/ , Freezepage http://www.freezepage.com/ and PasteHTML http://pastehtml.com/ – the output for the latter, unfortunately, often gets flagged as a “malicious site” and even blocked as spam by some content filters
Engaging On Forums
In forums and blogs outside the direct control of these groups just proceed business-as-usual. However, inside forums and blogs under the direct control of A+, FTB or Skepchick, it’s entirely a different matter. These sites are amongst the most heavily censored that you will encounter anywhere. It doesn’t stop there either. You will find comments disappear without notice (often, key points in sequential comments removed to make the poster seem incoherent). Comments also get tampered with to change what you say. And ultimately, there is the PZ Myers banhammer to stifle any persistent dissent – used with monotonous frequency. No dissent of any kind, nor deviation from established orthodoxy, is ever tolerated. What becomes readily apparent is that the fearless commentariat boasted of at these sites is not in fact fearless, but highly fragile, incoherent, cognitively dysfunctional and intellectually incapable of supporting their myriad of derangements and dogmas.
That said, if you still insist on attempting to engage these groups on their own soil, there are a number of recommended precautions to take –
- If possible, connect via one of the many free web proxy services out there. Not necessary, but a good idea
- Opera browser by default comes with a feature called Turbo – a “web accelerator” for slow connections. This routes traffic via Opera servers which then compress the web page and relay it to you. This is in effect a proxy – your web connections will appear as though they are being made from Opera. [updated 20130314]
- You can check that your proxy is working at http://www.whatismyip.com/ [updated 20130314]
- DO NOT use a genuine ID that you use elsewhere, such as WordPress or OpenID. EVER. By doing so, you leave your signature and fingerprint. This then allows these groups to modify your comment how they please and it will be authenticated to you. This CAN and DOES happen.
- DO NOT use an email address that is associated with a Gravatar account. You may be linked back to Gravatar without realising it. [edit added 20130111, source]
- Expect your comments to be tampered with and deleted at ALL TIMES. Use the recommended data capture steps above to protect yourself from misrepresentation.
- Lastly, don’t entertain any hope of actually having a civil and reasonable discussion – http://i.imgur.com/tGrkx.png
This document will probably expand, this is just the baseline survival guide. Far too many people have attempted to voice resistance in the past, and naively assumed reason could prevail. It won’t. Do not dare to hope. There are still many that consider what is written here is an overreaction – as have many others in the past. They often found out the hard way it isn’t. For a taste of what has been done to dissidents within the godless community, I would suggest a browse of the Phawrongula wiki –