TED Conversations

Bernard White


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In TED do we really give "thumbs up" when it is "argued well"? Or do we give "Thumbs up" when "we agree with it"?

I say this, because many people often argue their points very well. Even if I don't necessarily agree with them. How reliable is the "Thumb up" system?


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    Jun 13 2013: The latter
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      Jun 13 2013: Why not the former?
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        Jun 13 2013: Human nature
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          Jun 13 2013: Shouldn't we change (or at least attempt) to change it? Or in other words, value opinions on their worth rather than how much they reflect our opinions.
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        Jun 13 2013: Bernard,
        What would you change? People have different reasons for using the feature. Is it reasonable to assume that everyone would use it in the same way, or for the same reason?
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          Jun 13 2013: I guess I would try to teach people to try to judge opinions on their value and worth, not on who said them, on whether it reflects your own opinion or whether it sounds nice. To simply judge something on its logic, and its logic alone. Also to try to encourage people to have the humility (and courage) to admit their wrong. Is this too much to ask? :D
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        Jun 13 2013: You can ask all you like Bernard, and the best way to teach anything is by example, which you do very well my friend:>)
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          Jun 13 2013: Thank you for your kind words (as always)!
          Personally I find the intolerance which plagues the world does trouble me!
          I believe if people (in general) were more willing to admit they are wrong, and forgive, then many troubles would be gone! However this is quite unlikely to happen.
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        Jun 13 2013: Thank you as well Bernard! I believe we are in the process of creating a kinder, more peaceful world right now, and TED is a GREAT facilitator for that mission:>)

        Consider yourself thumbed up........I'm maxed out again:>)
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          Jun 13 2013: "peaceful world right now"
          Well according to a book I'm reading right now "The Better Angels of our Nature" (By Steven Pinker), we are living in the most peaceful era of mankind! It's interesting to find out the environment which can shape human behaviour for more pro-social interaction (or a decrease in violence).
          This TED talk inspired me to get the book :
          "Steven Pinker: The surprising decline in violence"
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        Jun 13 2013: "Shouldn't we change (or at least attempt) to change it? Or in other words, value opinions on their worth rather than how much they reflect our opinions."

        That would be trying to control something that you cannot control?

        Agreement is not that important it is actually more important to disagree as that indicates some thought about the discussion although that might be just reactionary, may be just communication is more important? but then real communication is rare.
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        Jun 14 2013: Bernard,
        I watched Pinker's TED talk a long time ago and at first, the information he provided surprised me, because our world does not seem very peaceful right now. I also presumed that he had accurate statistics.

        In the past, people and places in our world were isolated, and many times we were not aware of violence and abuse in other parts of our world. Our advanced communications make it possible to know what is happening around the world almost instantly. So, perhaps it feels like there is more violence now, and I am aware that you read a LOT, so you are probably aware of violence and abuse in the past.

        I read a lot too, and this reminds me of years ago, when I went to Russia, I was reading a book about Russia from the 10th centruy to the present (rulers, government, socio-economics, etc.), and I kept thinking...."nothing has changed" in our world from the 10th century!!! Well, some things have obviously changed, and human behaviors have not changed significantly.

        Based on the many conversations on TED, it appears that we (humans) are now starting to explore, evaluate and seeking change regarding some human behaviors that are not useful to our global societies...violence and abuse for one thing. I feel hopeful for our future.

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