Etiquette question: Should we only respond to discussions we agree with?

United States
February 15, 2011 10:31am CST
I have a tendency to respond to discussions that make statements I don't necessarily agree with, and give my own opinion and reasons for it. I like to think I'm reasonable and considerate of others opinions, just offering a different viewpoint. I've noticed over time that the majority of commenters tend to agree with the person who started the post. While there are times when I comment on a post I agree with to throw in my two cents, I think its much more interesting to read dissenting opinions. I've thought about this and I've started to wonder if there was (perhaps) an unspoken rule here that we avoid disagreement. I admit, I hate it when I go to a forum and a person states an unpopular (in that group) opinion and it seems like everyone piles up on that person with disagreement. But at the same time, is a bunch of people agreeing really a discussion? I don't want to be that odd man out that ruins the party by getting serious when everyone else is having fun, so if most people agree that its best to stick with discussions that we agree with I'll try to keep that in mind.
3 people like this
11 responses
@inu1711 (5288)
• Romania
15 Feb 11
Hello curtangel and welcome to myLot! The unwritten rule you are talking about is dictated by those little + and - next to any response/comment. If you are so unlucky to enter a discussion of a let's say "sensible" myLotter and you tell him/her you disagree with his/her idea, it's possible to see your reputation going down. (Of course, you can't see your reputation yet, but you're not too far for seeing your star.) If the discussion is started by a friend or a person that I know here, I won't hesitate to write my opinion. I know they use the + and the - the right way and I don't have any reason to stay away. But if the discussion is started by a user I don't know, I rather stay away of that discussion.
• United States
15 Feb 11
That makes sense - you're right I can't see standings yet. Thank you, I guess that explains it. I won't worry so much then, I don't really mind someone voting me down I just don't want to be the "downer".
@inu1711 (5288)
• Romania
15 Feb 11
It's good you don't want to be the "downer". The Discussion Rating System is a good thing only if it is used properly. But, unfortunately, there are myLotters who don't use it the right way. You are quite new here, but you will find out that you earn according to your reputation. If you have a low reputation, you earn a bit less than you would earn if you had a higher reputation. And when you see your reputation going down overnight, you'll see it is not a pleasant thing.
• United States
15 Feb 11
Hmmm.... I'll keep all of that in mind.
@laglen (19783)
• United States
15 Feb 11
I think your right debate is much better. However - I know at times I will post things that you would have to be a little off to disagree with but I post them to spread the word.
• United States
15 Feb 11
Well, yeah - I think I see what you're saying. I mean specifically posts that are "I read this - think this - what do you think?" and its seems like the answer across the board is "I think what you think." I wouldn't advocate disagreeing just for the sake of it - I just saw it enough I started to wonder if maybe I should save my comments for discussions that I wholeheartedly agree with.
1 person likes this
@laglen (19783)
• United States
15 Feb 11
absolutely not. I think you have the right idea.
@sumanadep (1230)
• India
16 Feb 11
I don't agree with you.. I think it is more interesting to respond to a discussion where people are saying opposite things... I like to comment to such discussion as it give others a different point of view and it also helps me to understand what they are thinking and their concerns... Mlot discussion allows you to give different views...
• United States
16 Feb 11
Yes, I was aware that Mylot allows you to disagree - I just noticed that discussions tended to have a lot of agreement. I thought perhaps I was being rude disagreeing - I was just checking what the community thought.
@GreenMoo (11842)
16 Feb 11
A discussion should be an airing of views both for and against a point, and it can hardly be called a discussion if those who don't agree steer clear. Then it would just be called an agreement! Perhaps people who disagree don't want to be seen to be doing so? I can't imagine why, if they make their point politely and without personal attack. It could just be that agreeing is easier than disagreeing and people are just out to make a quick buck and can't be bothered to think up a reasoned response if they don't agree.
• United States
16 Feb 11
Sometimes people agree out of courtesy (particularly in public situations) - I thought perhaps thats what people tended to do here. I haven't see any real fusses or arguments (I'm still new) so I thought perhaps there was an unwritten rule of agreement.
@SIMPLYD (74827)
• Philippines
16 Feb 11
It's normal to tell the one who started the discussion that you disagree and expound on your opinion. I do that sometimes. But what i cannot fathom, is why would someone mock your opinion. In defiance to that i skipped him. He sounds as if i am a moron.
• United States
16 Feb 11
No one mocked my opinon, I had just noticed a tendency for commenters to agree and I wondered about it. But I will keep what you said in mind.
• United States
15 Feb 11
I can see why you would respond to things you disagree with more than things you agree with, I know for me I would respond to something I disagree with because it causes more emotion than just seeing something I agree with.
• United States
15 Feb 11
Yes, definitely. If I agree with the person I don't have much to add, but if I have a different perspective then I have a lot more to say.
@sender621 (14956)
• United States
15 Feb 11
I think we should respond to discussions that interest us . they should be discussions that we can add something to. We don't have to agree with everyone. Opposing views and opinions can make quite a discussion!
• United States
15 Feb 11
I think so, too - as long as everyone is respectful. I try to be and I haven't seen the dark side of mylot yet. Sometimes communities have unwritten rules and I wanted to make sure I was all right.
@puccagirl (7316)
• Israel
15 Feb 11
No, if you are polite I think there is nothing wrong at all with disagreeing with people. That's part of life after all, so it would be strange if it did not show on MyLot as well.
• United States
15 Feb 11
The fact that I didn't see it often (or even at all) was what made me wonder. Perhaps I'm just looking at the wrong posts. : )
@megamatt (14333)
• United States
15 Feb 11
Responding to discussions we only agree with...what's the fun in that? Who wants to see a discussion where everyone is agreeing? Really when you think about it, all you need to read is the beginning post and you might as well not even post if that is the case. There are a lot of times where we go into a topic and it is just all agreement across the board but that doesn't interest me. I think that if you conduct yourself in a civil manner, you can disagree with people all you want. Really, it is a great thing, as it leads to debate and great topics. Topics that really are going to really inspire us all in the community. Therefore, you might encourage others to jump on and add onto what you are saying. I think you might also inspire others to really explain themselves more and everyone is going to get even more knowledge. So as long as everything is kept civil.
• United States
15 Feb 11
That's what I thought - different communities have different standards and I'm still new. I just wanted to make sure I wasn't stirring up trouble for myself.
@jujunme (2343)
• United States
15 Feb 11
No, there isn't any unspoken rule that says you shouldn't disagree with anyone.you have a right to your own opinion and like you, i do think an opposite point of view can be much more interesting than simply agreeing with someone. Unfortunately,there are people,who, no matter how polite or considerate you may be in your response,become offended simply because you disagree with them and may either become argumentative or rate you negatively.Of course this doesn't always occur and i've found that the majority of members here don't mind an opposing opinion at all and are very fair minded and considerate of others opinions.but, it is a gamble and only by getting to know the various people here and perhaps by reading their discussions and or reponses to others opinions, can you be somewhat sure your opposing opinion will be welcomed.
• United States
15 Feb 11
That's true, I'm still learning to "distinguish" people here. It takes a while when you're new to a forum to figure out who is who and such.
@mermaidivy (15417)
• United States
15 Feb 11
I think we can respond to any disccusions that we want whether we agree or disagree. Although I realize that people get all bended out of shape when they hear some negative responses. I think people should accept any kinds of comments when they create a discussion, they shoudn't get all upset or mad just because the responders dpon't stand your points.
• United States
15 Feb 11
I think I should make it clear here that no one has suggested I was wrong to disagree or even been nasty. I've just noticed how ubiquitous agreement seemed to be and wondered if there was an unwritten/unspoken rule.