Welcome RDFugees!

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Welcome RDFugees!

We've heard the terrible news about the coup d'etat at the RichardDawkins.net Forums (RDF)!

We sympathize deeply with the plight of all the members of that whole vibrant community, who have been so rudely uprooted and tossed out. We've heard that even long time moderators have had their entire accounts deleted, including thousands of posts and years of community building effort. (Here's a detailed account from a former forum admin.)

If you feel like a refugee , we extend an invitation to find support here at the Rational Response Squad forums. We're one of the oldest and largest forums for the atheist activists, and we treat our contributors as valuable members of a community. Our rules are quite straightforward, and our moderator team is measured and fair. We welcome anyone who wants to engage in free-thinking discussion and rational debate, and that includes theists of all flavors as well.

Our mission:

Quote:
The Rational Response Squad is a group of atheist activists who impact society by changing the way we view god belief.  This site is a haven for those who are pushing back against the norm, and a place for believers of gods to have their beliefs exposed as false should they want to try their hand at confronting us.

We are outspoken and unapologetic in our atheism, and we hope to encourage more people to be 'out' as well.

If that sounds interesting to you, read our standard welcome message, and then sign up for an account. Check out some of our recent discussions. If you'd like to say hi , or let off some steam , feel free to post a message in our Introductions forum letting us know what you're thinking.

Welcome, and ...

Stay rational!

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 Richard Dawkins Foundation

 

Richard Dawkins Foundation wrote:

We understand that for some of you it was a place to hang out and converse with like minded people but we are not looking to be a social network. There are many other sites that provide this service.


I just wanted to point out that the RRS provides that service.  I feel that through the exchange of ideas amongst our intelligent atheists we can help broaden understanding, make an impact, learn more about who we are, and fill a social gap left by leaving the religious right (amongst many other positive ideals I see from an expansive forum).  Additionally I know what it's like to have much of your history gone from the web.  The years immediately following my dropping of theism no longer exist on the internet today because of issues leading to an inability to keep such a full database/connection going.  Were people to be able to look back on those posts today they would get quite a bit of insight into who I am.  There would have been a history.  Offering that sort of history and communication to atheists who are more "active" is important to me.  I will continue to do everything in my power to make that facet of this site thrive in perpetuity. 

- Brian Sapient


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Sapient wrote:I feel that

Sapient wrote:

I feel that through the exchange of ideas amongst our intelligent atheists we can help broaden understanding, make an impact, learn more about who we are, and fill a social gap left by leaving the religious right (amongst many other positive ideals I see from an expansive forum).

 

i second this and i'm very disappointed that RDF is apparently too short-sighted to see the immense importance of giving atheists a social network in a world where atheists are at best urged to keep quiet and at worst ostracized.  yes, there are many other sites that provide this service--thankfully more and more everyday--but with the current state of the world it's impossible to have too many, imho.

i will rejoice to see the day when sites like this outlive their usefulness and become curious museum pieces.

 

 

"I asked my father,
I said, 'Father change my name.'
The one I'm using now it's covered up
with fear and filth and cowardice and shame."
--Leonard Cohen


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iwbiek wrote:i will rejoice

iwbiek wrote:

i will rejoice to see the day when sites like this outlive their usefulness and become curious museum pieces.

What a better world that would be.

- Brian Sapient


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natural wrote:We've heard

natural wrote:

We've heard the terrible news about the coup d'etat at the RichardDawkins.net Forums (RDF)!

There is so much misinformation going round about this.

natural wrote:

We sympathize deeply with the plight of all the members of that whole vibrant community, who have been so rudely uprooted and tossed out.

Not tossed out - a new system is on the way, but due to the incredibly childish reaction of some members (including moderators) the forums were switched to read only immediately.

natural wrote:

We've heard that even long time moderators have had their entire accounts deleted,

Yes people had their accounts deleted.  This was in response to them blocking the admins IP addresses and deleting all the server logs to hide their tracks.

natural wrote:

including thousands of posts and years of community building effort.

Indeed sad, but that's why the forums are in read only mode.  Could the situation have been handled better?  Yes.  Was the reaction to the news WAY over the top?  Yes.

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Hi Andrew, thanks for your

Hi Andrew, thanks for your reply. I replied in a separate thread to avoid hijacking this one.

See my response at: http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/19819

 

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Can anybody tell me what

Can anybody tell me what happened without linking to a million word post?

 

 


Atheistextremist
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Apparently

 

A vibrant atheist community had grown up around the forum on the RDF site - so vibrant the site was running like shit due to hardware deficiencies. There were mods running the forum while IT bods handled backroom and non forum management. Given the hardware issues and the actual focus of the RDF site it was decided to change the nature of the forum and to limit discussions on it and this decision took a long time and was not well communicated to those who felt ownership given the time they were investing to make the site work. The time investors were angry and members were hurt and this resulted in a lock-out, etc.  Guess the forum was not a priority for RDF site management. Members are being directed to rationalia.com.

 

 

 

 

 

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What really happened at RDF.

Atheistextremist wrote:
A vibrant atheist community had grown up around the forum on the RDF site - so vibrant the site was running like shit due to hardware deficiencies. There were mods running the forum while IT bods handled backroom and non forum management. Given the hardware issues and the actual focus of the RDF site it was decided to change the nature of the forum and to limit discussions on it and this decision took a long time and was not well communicated to those who felt ownership given the time they were investing to make the site work. The time investors were angry and members were hurt and this resulted in a lock-out, etc.  Guess the forum was not a priority for RDF site management. Members are being directed to rationalia.com.

Hi everyone. I've been a member of RDF since within weeks of its inception in 2006.

There's a lot of disinformation being bandied about, perhaps accidentally or some on purpose. From the user's POV, the functionality was OK for almost 3 years. But in mid July 2009, for no reason I can fathom, the search engine was disabled without warning. Since then I haven't been able to download page-assemblies of only my posts (any page I download has other people's posts in it as well).

It was repeatedly promised that this was a temporary glitch, & that Google would meet all our needs. But that's rubbish. It indicates the level of amateurishness or deception that pervaded the IT department at RDF. The search engine has not worked since then.

Then a few days ago the forum was shut down and several members' thousands of posts deleted without warning, & without the courtesy of allowing them to download their contributions. This is directly analogous to book-burning. To the best of my knowledge, what 'askegg' has written is not true. The quotes that Richard has brandished in his diatribe were due to livid anger AFTER the vandalism done to some members' records. Those colorful reactions were, in my opinion, well deserved for the infamy of the acts that elicited them. Furthermore, those quote are not from RDF, but from other places on the net after RDF was already closed down & records destroyed. They have been carefully gleaned by RDF to use as a disinformation exercise.

Richard Dawkins is entitled to steer his website in whatever direction he wants. But he is NOT entitled to destroy web archives, or agree to their destruction, without first having the common courtesy of allowing their owners the chance to download them. I don't care what the lawyers might have advised RD.net; it is natural justice that the contributors, who freely made RDF what it was, are the ultimate owners of the knowledge that they produced.

There are other forums/sites, far far larger, which have no problems running. Before July 2009 I didn't notice any major inconvenience. The arbitrary and capricious events, often keeping even the mods out of the loop, smack to me of some other agenda that we are not privy to. The disgust of thousands of members who have now joined other sites is not "incredibly childish" as askegg alleges. It is a rational reaction to devious behavior & abominable treatment. Askegg should pull his fingers out of his ears (his avatar), and visit this site (among several) which elucidates what has happened: http://www.rationalia.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=75

You'll be pleased to know that at rationalia.com we've also put links & encouragement to your site here: http://www.rationalia.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=75&t=9273&p=362488#p362488

There is some good in the suicide of RDF; Many atheist forums, such as this, will now grow, out from under the shadow of 1 man's forum. thumbs up

 

 

 

 

 


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Hmmm. Timonen et al can do

Hmmm.

Timonen et al can do whatever they want within the parameters of law.

If your posts were so brilliant then I would suggest constructing them in a text editing program such as MSWord, MSNotepad, or TextEdit for the mac and then copy/paste them to their destination. Every site has had instances of lost posts including this one. The responsibility for the care and keeping of your brilliance is not ours, but yours.

I'm pretty sure that no long-time member of this site will say that we felt as if we were 'under the shadow' of 1 man's forum.

 

Back to the issue: I think the single worst mistake that will be made is this idea that in the future version of the RDF forums posts will have to meet approval standards of the people who assert their control of the forums.

In my opinion, it turns from a pseudo-atheist-response site into a preaching site. As a consequence, people of my particular personality will cease to simply ignore them and begin highlighting the hypocrisy of calling it a forum or a discussion board. Eye-wink

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I'm a RDFugee

 I'm a RDFugee and I must say it's great to find a site like this one. I hope to make a positive contribution to the discussions, and it is FANTASTIC to find another cool group of atheists all in one place. I'm from South Africa and there aren't many of us around at the moment. But according to some of my recent research there is a strong movement away from credulity and faith even here in the religious outback of the world.

I started a group on Facebook called 'Religion-Free Africa' and I'm going to put a link to this site on the page. I think RRS will go a long way towards assisting Africans with information and assistance. Soooo fellow thinkers and reprobate atheists - it's great to be on board.

Atheism is not anti-religion, it is the absence of religion.


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Hey, welcome Stevo

 

Pleased to meet you and look forward to kicking your arse in the 20-20 world cup....

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


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Welcome Stevo! Hope you

Welcome Stevo! Hope you enjoy it here.

There's a little issue I'd like to mention to people who might come across this thread:

I've noticed several ex-members of RDF saying they don't want to come to the RRS because of the 'bad' things we've apparently done. They never specify what exactly, though. Unfortunately it appears several atheists have picked up and started to repeat rumours about the RRS which were started by haters, mostly theistic. If anyone reading this thread has similar thoughts, I would recommend checking your evidence. Did the person you hear the rumour from present solid evidence? Or was it just repeating some vague accusation? If they did provide evidence, was the source some tabloid-esque website like Encyclopedia Dramatica, or was it a real source of real evidence that can be checked for accuracy? Is the alleged 'wrong', even if true, really something unethical? Or is it a matter of misinterpretation, twisted by hater-bias.

The RRS is provocative, no doubt. Naturally, we get a lot of haters because of that. It goes with the territory. I would hope that our potential allies stay alert to this reality, and don't get sucked in by false information.

Considering that many ex-RDF members are now *themselves* experiencing rumours spread about them by such an *apparently* trustworthy source as Richard Dawkins himself, it behooves people to take a step back and think about the negative effects of rumours before they spread them around. Are we all going to take Dawkins' word that the RDFugees are vitriolic trolls or hyperbolic whiners? Or are we going to check the facts and realize that even someone like Dawkins can get the story wrong?

If you've got real evidence from a reliable source, great. But if not, be responsible for the words that come out of your mouth or through your fingertips. Double-check your sources. Get both sides of the story.

If anyone wanted proof that memes are real, just watch a rumour spread and mutate. Watch it multiply and amplify its colourfulness, adapting to the 'gossip instinct' humans have for juicy stories. What starts as a simple miscommunication or misunderstanding or a straight-out lie, can grow into a story which gets repeated not because it's true, but simply because it's evolved to be contagiously shocking.

If we take cultural evolution seriously, we must be aware that memes don't spread on their own. They require a person to repeat them. We are all carriers of some false memes; no one is perfect in that regard. Just as a critical thinker should not believe every thing that he hears, a responsible speaker/writer shouldn't repeat everything they believe. Even critical thinkers can make mistakes and let some false beliefs through their defenses. Again, Dawkins is a perfect example here. Just as it is responsible to cover you mouth when you cough, we should also check our evidence before we speak. Dawkins failed to do that, and look how far his diseased meme/rumour has spread.

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:3

StevoMuso wrote:

 I'm a RDFugee and I must say it's great to find a site like this one. I hope to make a positive contribution to the discussions, and it is FANTASTIC to find another cool group of atheists all in one place. I'm from South Africa and there aren't many of us around at the moment. But according to some of my recent research there is a strong movement away from credulity and faith even here in the religious outback of the world.

I started a group on Facebook called 'Religion-Free Africa' and I'm going to put a link to this site on the page. I think RRS will go a long way towards assisting Africans with information and assistance. Soooo fellow thinkers and reprobate atheists - it's great to be on board.

 

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Atheistextremist

Atheistextremist wrote:

 

Pleased to meet you and look forward to kicking your arse in the 20-20 world cup....

Hehe - I have no doubt that whichever country you are from, your team will cremate (wallop, desecrate, pick any word) our team on the field. I'm not really a follower of sport (I'm a musician and sport doesn't really feature in my life) but one thing I do know is that our SA team is pretty pathetic by world standards.

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natural wrote:Welcome Stevo!

natural wrote:
Welcome Stevo! Hope you enjoy it here.

There's a little issue I'd like to mention to people who might come across this thread: 

Thanks.

I have only heard good things about RRS. I don't think we need to worry too much about negative hate-speech type stories. Most free-thinkers are pretty good at sifting through garbage, being natural skeptics, and we all know that hate-speech usually comes from our credulous brethren because, lacking any logical points to back their case, they have little else to rely on.

Atheism is not anti-religion, it is the absence of religion.


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StevoMuso wrote:Most

StevoMuso wrote:

Most free-thinkers are pretty good at sifting through garbage, being natural skeptics, and we all know that hate-speech usually comes from our credulous brethren because, lacking any logical points to back their case, they have little else to rely on.

While "most" might be pretty good at it, I think you'd be surprisingly alarmed to see how many free thinkers use their heads just as irrationally as theists do.

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Sapient wrote:While "most"

Sapient wrote:
While "most" might be pretty good at it, I think you'd be surprisingly alarmed to see how many free thinkers use their heads just as irrationally as theists do.

Naaa. We're all perfect and non-confrontational, honest to a fault, fun-loving, forgiving ... aren't we? Bwuaaahahahah 

Seriously though - I don't think they need concern us too much (i.e. people who say nasty things about RRS). After all, there's no such thing as 'bad' publicity. I once wished the Pope would ban my book so that I could sell a million copies. Now that would be fame indeed heheheee.

Anyway, I, for one, am ecstatic to be on board - thanks for making me feel welcome *SIGH* 

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Hey, welcome.I posted a few

Hey, welcome.

I posted a few things to the RDF forums for a while, a few years back now. Seemed ok.

I will be going to see and hear Richard speaking on Thursday (March 4) -  I live in Brisbane, Australia.

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StevoMuso wrote:Anyway, I,

StevoMuso wrote:
Anyway, I, for one, am ecstatic to be on board - thanks for making me feel welcome *SIGH* 

We're excited to have you with us.

Welcome to RRS.

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


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BobSpence1 wrote:I will be

BobSpence1 wrote:

I will be going to see and hear Richard speaking on Thursday (March 4) -  I live in Brisbane, Australia.

I am soooo envious of people who live in First World countries like Aus. The Atheist Alliance International conference sounds brilliant, and I see it is sold out. That would be a miracle (hehe) in South Africa. If we had an AAI conference here we would get about 3 people (me and my 2 kids) ... naaa, just kidding, I know of quite a few SA atheists (maybe 10?).

I would LOVE to see/hear RD speaking - huge fan. Will you also go to see/hear Dan Barker? He wrote the Foreword for my book, and he is brilliant - highly recommend going to his talk too.

See you guys in the forum ...

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StevoMuso wrote:BobSpence1

StevoMuso wrote:

BobSpence1 wrote:

I will be going to see and hear Richard speaking on Thursday (March 4) -  I live in Brisbane, Australia.

I am soooo envious of people who live in First World countries like Aus. The Atheist Alliance International conference sounds brilliant, and I see it is sold out. That would be a miracle (hehe) in South Africa. If we had an AAI conference here we would get about 3 people (me and my 2 kids) ... naaa, just kidding, I know of quite a few SA atheists (maybe 10?).

I would LOVE to see/hear RD speaking - huge fan. Will you also go to see/hear Dan Barker? He wrote the Foreword for my book, and he is brilliant - highly recommend going to his talk too.

See you guys in the forum ...

Unfortunately, I cannot afford to travel to Melbourne for the event that Dan Barker and many other atheist 'stars' will be at, much as I would love to. I am actually listening to Dan's podcast as I type.

I keep looking at my ticket to the local RD presentation to remind myself it is real.

The only person of that sort of international stature in the Atheist/Skeptical arena I have seen and actually spoken to is James Randi. I have one of his books personally autographed.

I am hoping I will be in a position to attend TAM Australia in November.

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

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BobSpence1

BobSpence1 wrote:
 Unfortunately, I cannot afford to travel to Melbourne for the event that Dan Barker and many other atheist 'stars' will be at, much as I would love to. I am actually listening to Dan's podcast as I type.

I keep looking at my ticket to the local RD presentation to remind myself it is real.

The only person of that sort of international stature in the Atheist/Skeptical arena I have seen and actually spoken to is James Randi. I have one of his books personally autographed.

I am hoping I will be in a position to attend TAM Australia in November.

Oh ... so RD is speaking in a different city? Sorry, my bad. I was wondering why Dan B was still on holiday. He told me yesterday that he would be off line for 5 days because he's going on a hike in NZ (sounds cool, "Dan said to me the other day ..." hehe). I've just been to the site and see that the Rise of Atheism 2010 Global Atheist Convention in Melbourne only starts on the 12th, so DB must be touring a bit of Aus giving talks along the way. I would also keep looking at my ticket to make sure it's real Smiling Damn - if he tried that in SA he would probably be lynched in the streets Sad

I have 2 James Randi books (Flim Flam and Faith Healers). Had to import them from the USA about 12 years ago. They are amoungst my most prized possessions along with other books by Carl Sagan (Demon Haunted World), Joseph McCabe (Myth of the resurrection) and Robert Ingersoll (a 1927 printing of some of his essays), about 5 Ayn Rand books, Bertrand Russell, Joe Nickel. Aah books - gotta love em.

Did you see James Randi in the Penn and Teller "Bullshit" episode on Nostradamus? He is brilliant!

Sorry, but what is TAM? 

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StevoMuso wrote:BobSpence1

StevoMuso wrote:

BobSpence1 wrote:
 Unfortunately, I cannot afford to travel to Melbourne for the event that Dan Barker and many other atheist 'stars' will be at, much as I would love to. I am actually listening to Dan's podcast as I type.

I keep looking at my ticket to the local RD presentation to remind myself it is real.

The only person of that sort of international stature in the Atheist/Skeptical arena I have seen and actually spoken to is James Randi. I have one of his books personally autographed.

I am hoping I will be in a position to attend TAM Australia in November.

Oh ... so RD is speaking in a different city? Sorry, my bad. I was wondering why Dan B was still on holiday. He told me yesterday that he would be off line for 5 days because he's going on a hike in NZ (sounds cool, "Dan said to me the other day ..." hehe). I've just been to the site and see that the Rise of Atheism 2010 Global Atheist Convention in Melbourne only starts on the 12th, so DB must be touring a bit of Aus giving talks along the way. I would also keep looking at my ticket to make sure it's real Smiling Damn - if he tried that in SA he would probably be lynched in the streets Sad

I have 2 James Randi books (Flim Flam and Faith Healers). Had to import them from the USA about 12 years ago. They are amoungst my most prized possessions along with other books by Carl Sagan (Demon Haunted World), Joseph McCabe (Myth of the resurrection) and Robert Ingersoll (a 1927 printing of some of his essays), about 5 Ayn Rand books, Bertrand Russell, Joe Nickel. Aah books - gotta love em.

Did you see James Randi in the Penn and Teller "Bullshit" episode on Nostradamus? He is brilliant!

Sorry, but what is TAM? 

I am just thankful that RD has come out here early enough to appear at the Brisbane atheist/sceptic get-together, as well as the Melbourne thing.

"The Amazing Meeting", organized by Randi. As a magician, his stage name was "the Amazing Randi", hence the name of the meeting. He has been organizing them now for some years in the US. His next one in the US is TAM8.

The one I hope to go to is the first one in Australia.

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

From the sublime to the ridiculous: Science -> Philosophy -> Theology


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Welcome home to the new

Welcome home to the new people.

 


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BobSpence1 wrote:"The

BobSpence1 wrote:

"The Amazing Meeting", organized by Randi. As a magician, his stage name was "the Amazing Randi", hence the name of the meeting. He has been organizing them now for some years in the US. His next one in the US is TAM8.

The one I hope to go to is the first one in Australia.

Followed the link, thanks. It looks friggen awesome. It will be many years of hard labour (for us evangelical atheists in SA) before SA will be ready to host any event of this nature. Ah well. Hopefully my book sells well and I become known as SAs version of RD, then I may be invited to these events as one of the speakers. Hehe, we can only hope and dream *SIGH*

Atheism is not anti-religion, it is the absence of religion.