Selective Hearing

Recovered from the Wayback Machine.

Debate is not a game one plays when one is bored or has little else to do. Debate is a way of people trying to understand each other’s point of view. At the least, it is a way of discussing points of view for an audience in order to convince members of that audience to follow one course or another. Debate, when practiced at its best, is a celebration of differences.

In this previous post I responded, many times, to questions and concerns about RDF and RDF/XML raised by people such as Mark Pilgrim and Joe Gregorio. Was I patient? I hope I was. I tried to be. Was I accurate? As accurate as I could be. Did I convince anyone? Unknown. At the very least, though, I had hoped that I had argued well and that my rather extensive efforts were met with respect.

Imagine how disappointing then when I visit Joe’s weblog and find that he’s posted a new note about this discussion and quotes everyone in the debate but myself, though most of the quotes he uses were a result of my own discussion.

By ignoring me I have effectively been removed from the debate, my efforts dismissed. I have been reduced.

It is too easy in weblogging to reduce each other. Too easy to dismiss each other. To easy to ignore that which we just don’t want to hear, and manipulate that which we don’t want to ignore.

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