musicvid10 wrote on 5/23/2014, 9:26 AM
I was recently reminded of a young troll (I don't use the term lightly), who would feel compelled to argue the finer points of video encoder libraries, coding, and filters with anyone who would listen -- even their developers. After digging through the layer of pseudo-tech language, it became apparent that it was all nonsense; kind of a word salad of bits and phrases gathered from Google searches, and posted without any real understanding of what he was saying. Yet in his eyes, he was the world's expert on everything having to do with encoding video. Even told me a few things I could do with Vegas and frameserver, another time audio encoding, that still cannot be done. A few people here will know exactly who I am talking about or someone like him; he had a truly disgusting user name.

It turns out the unfortunate chap had never produced anything in his life -- it was all imaginary and a product of his fantasy world. His Youtube channel consisted of a couple of bad college party videos shot in miniDV. All of the software and tools he said he owned were equally imaginary, including Vegas, Premiere, Final Cut, Avid, and others. He was banned from, or simply left a number of respected editing forums a few years back.

Why do I bring this up? To point out the very clear difference between reading about something and then relaying it as fact, and actually using and testing one's information in a verifiable setting before sharing it. Our (my) chances of being wrong, and potentially causing problems for others are greatly increased by repeating hearsay, no matter how reputable the source. I may have speculated, misinterpreted, misapplied, mistaken apples for oranges, or simply had bad information. Just like scripture study, one can easily find internet quotes to back up any preconception or bias one wishes to promote. If on the other hand, one already has a working knowledge or has responsibly tested one's theories, the chances of errors or misinterpretation by those reading it are reduced measurably. Add to that the deliberate use of precise language, and the chances of posting a useful response are increased.

The pathology (confabulation, narcissism, neediness, low self-esteem) of my example aside, we do have a responsibility when posting on a public forum to qualify our facts, or simply to label speculation as speculation. That way, we run less risk of confusing new users, and readers can choose simply to accept advice or not, without the added burden of an inappropriately authoritarian presentation.

I've done it, we all have; assumed something we read is gospel, and subsequently found out that what we shared or speculated about was rumor, incorrect, or simply didn't apply. I know preaching to the choir doesn't work. I know those who have a compulsion to propagate bs will continue to do so, and will continue to receive attention for it.

EOR (end of rant)


vtxrocketeer wrote on 5/23/2014, 10:21 AM
Very well said. One of the most thoughtful posts I've seen. (At least that's one opinion that I found on some website.) ;)
John222 wrote on 5/23/2014, 10:24 AM
I used to work with a guy like that.
PhillB wrote on 5/23/2014, 10:41 AM
Well said.
In my experience the saying "those that can do and those that can't teach" always sounds a little unfair but with so much misinformation around, learning a craft is hard.

Unfortunately it seems those that can are always busy and have little time for teaching.
The other point I've noticed is that people I believe to be really good at what they do, seldom have an unkind word or criticise others work, how ever poor it may seem.
larry-peter wrote on 5/23/2014, 10:45 AM
Total agreement. Even though I've been working at this craft a long time, hopefully I'm not guilty of ever coming across as a self-appointed "expert," because there are more knowledgeable people than me on almost every subject. My offerings are intended to be be suggestions that might help someone, but I have been wrong (or only partially correct) many times. Hopefully everyone here who participates does it in the spirit of sharing and learning.
musicvid10 wrote on 5/23/2014, 10:53 AM
atom12, I wasn't going to comment further in this thread, but I have to say that the accuracy and relevance of your responses on this forum are consistently well above the baseline, in my opinion.

Of course, I may just be saying that because we seem to agree a lot.

ChristoC wrote on 5/23/2014, 5:29 PM
Back in the late '80s when the Internet, which was mostly accessed by Universities and interested geeks, was just becoming available to the wider community, a good and intelligent friend said .... "You watch, the Internet will become a cesspool; lots of people pissing into it, and no-one will be prepared to wade in and clean it out!" How prophetic.
John_Cline wrote on 5/23/2014, 6:05 PM
Thankfully, this forum has been relatively devoid of trolls and it's really one of the higher quality user forums on the Internet, however, there have been a few trolls (most notably BillyBoy) and they always seem to get quite defensive when called on their nonsense. I agree that we have a solemn responsibility to disseminate accurate information here on the forum, if I'm not 100% certain of something, I just won't say anything but if I see someone posting something which I know for a fact isn't true or correct, I'll call them on it and that often causes trouble. I suppose it's ultimately better to cause trouble than have some new or inexperienced user actually believe their nonsense or worse yet, spread it to their friends or on other forums.
GeeBax wrote on 5/23/2014, 6:56 PM
I fully agree with the sentiments here. There are a couple of areas I am well versed in, and I will offer advice on those subjects, but in the main, I seek advice here, and I have been well rewarded by excellent advice from the members here.

In contrast, this week I left the Blackmagic forum in a blaze of anything-but-glory, due to the poisonous atmosphere on the forum and the large number of useless trolls who frequent it.

The one nice thing was that one of the administrators wrote to thank me for the advice I had given while I was a member.
musicvid10 wrote on 5/23/2014, 8:39 PM
The internet didn't create the cesspool, it just moved over from CB radio.
If Pandora's Box didn't already exist in the social media, we would find a way to invent it.
PeterDuke wrote on 5/23/2014, 9:41 PM
Misinformation is easily propagated.

For instance, I had always been under the impression (from my limited experience and reading other posts here) that DVDArch required the audio and video to be in separate files or else the audio would always be recompressed. In fact it will not recompress the audio if the audio is to DVDArch's liking, such as at least some files (MPEG2 or AVC) from discs that have been previously authored by DVDArch.
Rory Cooper wrote on 5/26/2014, 5:54 AM
Everyone has something to learn and something to teach, some are experts at teaching you long suffering and grace. reaching for a can of verbal mace will get you some space......... but only off the forum.
JohnnyRoy wrote on 5/26/2014, 7:40 AM
> "Just like scripture study, one can easily find internet quotes to back up any preconception or bias one wishes to promote."

Since you mentioned scripture, I think the way that people use scripture (and the Internet) for their own meaning is to take it out of context either accidentally or deliberately. Sometimes someone will post to a forum with a "fact" that they "read on the internet" that is only true in a certain context but the context part somehow got lost. This is why some people think they know something that they really don't. (not trying to defend trolls here but just trying to explain how regular people who don't have direct experience in a topic can confuse more people than they help).

I try and test any recommendation that I make to be sure that it works for me before I giving someone advice. It takes longer to answer a post because you have to test first, but the quality of the answer is often better and I feel it's worth the extra effort. Sometimes it doesn't work for them and so together we figure out why and it becomes a lesson for me. I've found that helping people is the best way to learn because they often give you a different perspective that you hadn't thought of.

Like you said, we all give bad advice at times. What matters is that we correct ourselves and learn from the experience. That's when you "grow". ;-)

musicvid10 wrote on 5/26/2014, 8:37 AM
To add a bit to something JR touched on, another way the ambitious promote their agendas or themselves is by invoking internet quotations as some kind of "higher, unquestioned authority"; again often out of context. It's been a favorite trick among crusaders of all persuasions, especially those who tend to confuse their personal and political goals. George Wallace once said, "The only thing that's better than money is power."
MikeyDH wrote on 5/26/2014, 11:27 AM
I come to the forums to learn and in that regard it is tough to understand what some are teaching period. There are those who are straightforward in their approach and explanation, like JR, while others are so technically spoken that you wonder if you are dealing with Einstein or someone who wants to sound like him. It would be nice if we were all on the same page or level. I'd like to get to the point where I can separate the facts from the fiction. For the most part these forums succeed in my attempts at understanding.
Rory Cooper wrote on 5/27/2014, 2:53 AM
Separating fact from fiction will still be based on your emotion because that’s how we are. Emotion first fact second. Humans by nature will believe an image or video without testing the image, the same with sound, because it requires very little thinking to process. Even if faked they will trust an image or sound source without question. simply take an image and link it to human emotion and ....SOLD WITHOUT QUESTION...and cheaply..!! Reading on the other hand is far superior as a teaching aid because the person hears and sees the information in his own mind and with his own voice. also requires cognitive thinking so writing what you read in an abbreviated style will help you really understand and test to the accuracy of the info. Unfortunately requires time, but worth it.
larry-peter wrote on 5/27/2014, 9:19 AM
A philosopher that was a personal mentor of mine told me over and over, "The strongest motivator for many is to 'not be wrong' - even overriding survival itself."

She also told me, "'I don't know' is always an acceptable answer."
musicvid10 wrote on 5/27/2014, 9:26 AM
It's unfortunate that too many "professionals," educators and the rest, don't understand that.
John_Cline wrote on 5/27/2014, 6:20 PM
She also told me, "'I don't know' is always an acceptable answer."

In a forum setting, if you aren't 100% certain of the answer to a question, it is probably best to just not say anything, that's always worked for me.
GeeBax wrote on 5/27/2014, 7:05 PM
I just love it when a forum member posts a question and someone replies saying 'I don't know' :-)
farss wrote on 5/27/2014, 7:15 PM
The problem often isn't the answer, it's the question.

Lovelight wrote on 5/27/2014, 8:04 PM
Is that a Socrates misquote?

I think the narcassism on this thread is off the Vegas scope.

PeterDuke wrote on 5/27/2014, 8:38 PM
"'I don't know' is always an acceptable answer."

I find many people answer "I am not sure" when it is clear that they definitely don't know.
ushere wrote on 5/27/2014, 9:29 PM
i used to be indecisive, but i'm not so sure anymore....
larry-peter wrote on 5/27/2014, 9:30 PM
I think this thread is quite an enjoyable read. Almost everyone on this thread has taught me something over the years.

And healthy narcissism is a component of a successful personality. I don't believe anyone here has overstated their contributions or their worth.

BTW, "'I don't know' is always an acceptable answer," was given in context to the prior statement about those who would rather face death than face being wrong.