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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 76 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: The Forge's Anti-Polling position  (Read 13216 times)
Andrew Morris

Posts: 1233

« Reply #30 on: April 29, 2005, 09:43:09 AM »

K, I believe polls have value, in certain situations, and if certain conditions are met. Do I think there's value in discussing whether or not polls should be allowed here at the Forge? Not really. If I'm so all-fired up about the utility of polling, I'll start a site dedicated to just that purpose and send any interested parties to it. Likewise, do I feel there's a value in discussing why polls aren't allowed? Again, not really. If I feel it's that vital, my remedy is very simple -- go out and do it myself instead of questioning why someone else doesn't want to do it.

Quote from: killacozzy
I wasn't fighting to "wear shoes", I was simply discussing (or thought I was discussing) an alterate method.... like maybe a... "mat" to "wipe your shoes on"(?).... all for the sake of discussion.  It's not about me not wanting to abide by law, it's just that the only way to make progress is to challenge the status quo.  You make your "faith" stronger by questioning it.... and if your "faith" crumbles, then get another "faith".

I know. Look at the analogy again. I'm not likening your position to insisting on wearing shoes in the no-shoes house. I'm likening your position to asking the house owner why they have that rule, after they've explained their reason...several times. Simply because you don't agree with their reason in no way lessens the fact that the question has been asked and answered.

Download: Unistat
anthony kilburn

Posts: 54

« Reply #31 on: April 29, 2005, 10:04:37 AM »

Quote from: Valamir
Its conceivable (quite likely actually) that you could uncover a way of discussing the name of your game and the process involved in naming games in general in a way that is not shallow and not unsubstantial and that WOULD make for an entirely appropriate and appreciated topic for the Forge. The thread in question wasn't it...it was a poll. Simple as that.


Quote from: killacozzy
My first issue deals with a product's name. Do you think a game's title necessarily has to describe it? Examples that come to mind would be Dawnforge or Dungeons and Dragons, and if you'd never heard of either, you still may have an idea about the game inside. The converse would be games like Amber or Conan, which I suppose would require a bit of name recognition and familiarity with the source material.


Quote from: Shreyas Sampat
Now, regarding titles; are you asking for people to compare their experiences with name-recognition against easily interpreted titles? That might be a good topic for a separate thread.

Oh!  It appears I wasn't polling, but discussing something.

Quote from: Andrew Morris
I'm not likening your position to insisting on wearing shoes in the no-shoes house. I'm likening your position to asking the house owner why they have that rule, after they've explained their reason...several times. Simply because you don't agree with their reason in no way lessens the fact that the question has been asked and answered.

This is true.  If it comes off as disrespect, it's not.  I'm mostly trying to explain the principle of superlatives:  when you say something is entirely worthless and ineffective, you're wrong.  Nothing is always true.  There must be an instance where that normally worthless thing has value.  And in, that, there is hope.... for polling?  I dunno, from the looks of its opposition.

And I didn't care until someone else asked the question.  They got a response, but I saw some "holes" in the response's logic.  I mean, maybe I'm arrogant for thinking certain things weren't brought up before, but I figured since this is a discussion board, we'd discuss the "holes" and reasons for the whole debacle.

If everyone thinks it's pointless to talk about it, at this point, I agree.  I was finished with it until about 9:13 this morning when I was basically mocked and called a "crybaby".  I mean.... geez.  LOL.

And just as a point, don't present something as a principle and then say "you don't have to agree with it", because a principle is, by definition, "a basic truth or law or assumption".  If we don't agree, it ain't no principle.

Posts: 5574

« Reply #32 on: April 29, 2005, 10:51:47 AM »

Oh! It appears I wasn't polling, but discussing something.

Killa, little gotcha games aren't going to earn you any points.  You've been told by Ron Edwards content moderator of the site that he considers your post to be a poll and therefor not suitable for discussion here.  Period.  That's his call to make.

You claimed you didn't understand the rationale behind it.  That rationale has been explained to you several times now.  It is now clear that you do, in fact, understand exactly what the rationale is yet you choose to argue about it anyway.  I have no desire to argue with you.  I posted to help clarify Forge policy, that has been accomplished.

I see no further point to continuing this discussion.

anthony kilburn

Posts: 54

« Reply #33 on: April 29, 2005, 11:21:19 AM »

Quote from: Valamir
You've been told by Ron Edwards content moderator of the site that he considers your post to be a poll and therefor not suitable for discussion here.  Period.

But I wasn't.  In my original thread, he posted a good-sized message about why he thought that type of polling would be useless in relation to my original question.  Aside from someone asking about the actual site policy based on Ron's polling comment, that thread was entirely unrelated.  It was the book upon which this movie was based.  I used my game as an example only because it was the one Ron used.

And you're right, I understand the rationale.  I did from the beginning.  I wasn't questioning the site's policy either.  Again, for the last time, someone tried to say that there was no way it could be benefitial, I disagreed, hillarity ensued.

It has nothing to do with anything other than a debate on an issue: the use of polling in game design.  All the comments directed at me and not the topic are way out of line.

You kids should apologize and go to your room. ;-)

Posts: 97

« Reply #34 on: April 29, 2005, 12:32:15 PM »

OK, so the issue has been settled re polling in the Forge.  But, don’t feel ostracized, Killa.  The Forge takes getting used to, but has great value if used properly.  The Forge is like a graduate level philosophy class versus a 100 level undergrad one (as in some other RPG forums).  In the latter, discourse occurs, but very sloppily.  In the former, discourse methods common in the latter are an annoyance.  But, the choice of the vets is to either get frustrated with the newcomer and (consciously/unconsciously) drive him away, or to patiently lead him to grasp the new paradigm.  You are new here, which means you will inevitably make more “undergrad” errors.  On the other hand, the vets should keep their annoyance under their hats until you either adapt (or until it is clear you refuse to do so).  
So, stick around, learn the feel of things around here, and you’ll benefit from it for your game.


Posts: 563

« Reply #35 on: May 20, 2005, 10:23:01 AM »

I don't know if it will help at this stage, but I think it's worth revisiting Ron's statement that the poll of any size is worthless.  That's the only thing anyone has said here that I don't think CAN be disagreed with and yet it doesn't seem to be carrying any weight.

Let's look at it this way: I want to do a poll on how pornography affects a marriage.  

I decide that the people with the most experience on this are probably married couples who subscribe to Playboy, so I run an ad in the magazine to get responses.  "Wow," I say, "it looks like 75% of people are helped by pornography and with a sample of 5000 responses, it's sure to be accurate!"

Just to confirm that, I take the poll over to a giant Baptist church.  With 8000 people attending, I find that only 1% of the people said it helps.

Which poll provided valuable information?

Neither.  Why?
1) Neither sample is representative of the population.  
What population?  I didn't even define what population I wanted to test my question on.  As phrased, technically it's all married people around the world.
2) There was no control over the application of the survey.
Just think about this one... a guy comes up to his wife and says "Hey, honey, this guy in Playboy wants to know if we think porn has improved our marriage?"  If he's that open about it, they probably think so.  But what if he answered only based on his own perceptions?  Do we know that the Baptist poll wasn't skewed by people being worried that others might see what they voted?
3) The poll doesn't test anything useful.
If we're just asking whether porn has improved a marriage, we've only got opinions.  Someone might be saying "Yes" as a way to try to convince themselves it's working even as they cry themselves to sleep at night.  Someone might be saying "No" without ever having tried it.  In neither case do you really know how good their marriage was or what made it that way.

Now, let's look at the Forge.
1) The Forge is not a representative sample of anything.  
Some of you know this from experience, because you ask the same question on RPG.net that you ask here, and you know that you get two totally different answers.  The Forge isn't even representative of itself because a lot of people who read never post.
2) Again, there's no control over the application of the survery.
I've got a dirty secret.  I like taking polls.  I liked RPG.net's Poll forum because I could find all the polls and go answer all of them.  All of them.  Even the ones that are trying to only ask women or only D&D players.  If they want me to read something and I don't have time, I'll just vote a snap impression.  I just like voting, so I do.  I don't know how many people are like me out there, but when many polls only get 20-30 votes, two of us will skew your results by 5-10%, enough to make multiple choice polls meaningless.  (And, since people like me like polls, you can bet that we're a higher percent of poll respondents than we are of the general population).  There are other issues, too, like whether people are voting multiple times, whether they read the question correctly and whether they actually clicked the right button.
3) The poll still doesn't test anything useful.
Don't believe me?  I worked for a university that wanted to do a scientific survey of students regarding eating disorders and vegetarians.  To make their results valid, they  had to design it using software that cost them $3000 (it would have cost a company $12,000).  Then they consulted with a stats guy, ran a sample survey, consulted again, ran another sample, consulted again and finally did the study, which the software ruled as "inconclusive".  Heres an RPG-specific example.  You ask people whether they like a name and 80% of them say "Yes!"  You think you've got a slam dunk, right?  Why would you think that?  By thinking that you have a slam dunk, you're already applying the results of that survey to sales.  But you didn't ask about sales, did you?  You're just inferring information that isn't there because you think you know what polls do.  (You're not alone... the news media do it every four years when they pretend that candidate approval polls predict how people will vote for president.  They're wrong every time.)

So, regardless of Forge policy, I wouldn't use polls for anything other than enetertainment.

Justin Dagna
President, Technicraft Design.  Creator, Pax Draconis
Ron Edwards
Global Moderator
Posts: 16490

« Reply #36 on: May 20, 2005, 10:40:36 AM »

Guys, this ought to go to a new thread if people want to break it out into sub-issues or similar stuff. This thread reached a kind of natural end a month ago, as I see it.

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