Chronos and Betting

This post:

Since when is betting not allowed? I seem to have missed it.

I didn’t always agree with Bricker, but he was dead right about this when he was a regular poster. His observation goes back at least to Kant:

Just the fact of a bet can be intellectually healthy, regardless of the size.

Even the bet of a single dollar forces adherence to a specific proposition, and a specific time-frame, with a specific possibility of being wrong. This is why it’s so useful. Absent a religious reluctance, people who avoid even minuscule bets do so because they don’t actually believe what they’re writing.

As it is said, bets are “taxes on bullshit”. I think 2012 was the last bet I made here, but it’s still a bad move if they’re gone.

Bets have been banned on the Dope for ages now

“Since when” was the specific question in the OP.

I did a search and thought I came up with a 2017 thread in which bets weren’t banned, so it doesn’t seem like it could’ve been all that long ago…

…oh no, that thread was 2007, not 2017…

Actually, I’ve just gone and looked at the rules in various parts of the Dope, and this seems to be something of an overstatement.

There is nothing about betting in the Registration Agreement, Rules, and FAQ.

There is also nothing about betting in the Game Room’s rules. (That’s where the post appeared that @Chronos gave a warning to.)

The only places where betting is explicitly forbidden, as far as I can tell, is in Great Debates and in Politics and Elections.

I did not know, until today, that there was any “no betting” rule at the SDMB, and it seems that the rule was never explicitly applied anywhere outside those two forums.

I didn’t mean for this thread to dispute a warning, but okay then. Bad warning.

Hasty justification from the mods there.

Even if it’s a jerk move to harangue people for not betting – and sure, that makes some sense – that implies a rule against haranguing people, not a rule against betting. If someone rejects an offer to bet, then just drop it. Give a warning if the hassling continues.

This is why:

AFAIK it’s against the rules to accuse a poster of acting in bad faith, and you even admit that the purpose of the bet is imply that the poster doesn’t believe what they are posting. It’s cheap rhetoric that attacks the poster not the post.

Because Discourse apparently hides flagged posts, I don’t know what UltraVires said or did to get moderated.

Did you hit the “view ignored content” button?

I don’t think that’s true. I think that people who are eager to bet have confidence in their own ability to frame the conditions of the bet, and arguing about whether or not real world happenings meet these. Then if you try to nail down conditions with them to your liking, even if there is some catch that you have found ahead of time rather than sprung up on you retroactively, they will try to argue that by not agreeing to their narrow interpretation of your statement you are somehow being intellectually dishonest.

And that’s before we get into people who just don’t pay their bet, and people do who have time to craft intellectually rigorous predictions but don’t think it’s worth it to keep track of bets and whether or not they’ll be weaseled out of or baldfacedly ignored.

Now I see: I had originally seen Chronos’s “Moderating” post, and when I clicked to see what it was in reply to, all that came up was “This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden,” with no option to reveal the hidden post.

But going up to UltraVires’s post itself, I do see the option to “View ignored content.”

Just more Discourse quirks to get used to, I guess.

Put up or shut up is a stupid philosophy. Betting leads to grief on the boards anyway.

I actually gave several reasons, not “the” reason.

Bets clarify specific positions. They create falsifiable propositions on specific, finite time-frames. This is to say: If there’s an actual agreement being hammered out, both parties will want the terms of that agreement specified with accuracy. There is value in that by itself.

But it’s also true, yes, that people who mouth off without thinking about what they’re saying will naturally be reluctant to bet. That’s not the only reason, of course. It’s actually understandable if a pseudonymous person doesn’t want to bother with the rigamarole involved in setting up an internet bet. But that – again – is a justification for a rule against haranguing, rather than a rule against all possible bets.

I don’t see eye-to-eye with UV on, well, pretty much anything. And I think betting on the board does nothing but detract from conversation, no matter what forum.

But the rule in force was no betting in GD and Politics. He didn’t violate that rule, so IMO his warning should be rescinded.

Then extend the no-betting rule to all forums.

I tend to agree.


This was the main point I was trying to make. Whether you like betting or not, no-one, not even UltraVires, should be punished for disobeying a nonexistent rule.

I should add, by the way, that while it’s probably a good idea to remove betting challenges from general discussions, I really don’t have too much of a problem with threads like this one, which was started explicitly to bet on a particular outcome.

Huh. First I’ve heard that betting is prohibited on the SDMB. I’ve offered, or accepted, bets several times here over the years - including over politics - and no one ever complained.

There was a period of a couple years a few years back where at least one bet was never paid off and at least one bet that specified “to a charity of my choice” was directed to a political organization. Maybe that had to do with the decision, which wasn’t always in place.

I totally agree with this. I’ve seen people in real life making use of the same abject strategy to intimidate their opponents in a debate. And yes, I took such bets with people who refused to admit defeat for various excuses. The stupidest one came from a guy claiming the definition in the encyclopedia was wrong.

Yeah, come on. I said I wasn’t sure if betting extended to donations to others’ charities and I specifically said that if it was against the rules, then to ignore my post. I wasn’t trying to skirt anything.

Betting or gambling, in my mind, extends to one person making money off of the other person. This was a donation to charity. If someone had just told me that was against the rules as well, then I self-retracted it in the very same post.

Bullshit warning.

I wasn’t accusing you of acting in bad faith. I believe that you are sincere in your beliefs that these rules are just temporary, but I equally believe that they are not. I know that the board has prohibited betting, which I have always understood to be personal enrichment, so I asked, I asked, if charitable contributions by the incorrect party would be permitted and if so, I offered a challenge, and then specifically said that if it was not permitted, then I withdrew it. I wasn’t sure, now I know and I withdraw.

I’ll admit that I did not know that the rule against betting was only for GD and elections, so I won’t attempt to take advantage of that. But I wasn’t trying to skirt a line or game any rule. And I definitely was not accusing you of posting in bad faith.