I have written thousands of things in a variety of contexts and there’s no way to avoid sometimes having misunderstandings with people who are less familiar with the context. While I usually specific more context than most authors, defensively always specifying all relevant or abnormal (for some reader) context is impossible. We always assume tons of unspecified context. There are often clues in my writing style, or explicit statements, which are sometimes missed.
So I try not to worry too much about it, which could be a large burden.
One of the things I’ve done about this is make two blogs and two YouTube channels. The CF ones are more formal, more aimed at a general audience, more careful to avoid confusing anyone, etc.
I think the following is adequately clear for setting the context of the statement about disclosure that comes a little later in the same section:
People try to learn philosophy. They get stuck. I try to brainstorm how/why they’re stuck and how to help. They sometimes try or pretend to try to brainstorm what’s going on too.
Meanwhile they’re on drugs and they aren’t disclosing that!? Maybe that’s why they’re stuck!
I told a story then I commented on that story.
It’s certainly possible to misunderstand and could be made clearer. But I did try to explain a context there that I had in mind. When I wrote:
So not disclosing coffee drinking after that [that = my podcast criticizing coffee] is problematic.
That was not anything like a universal, generic, contextless statement. It was a statement about the specified context I was currently discussing. Repeating the same word (“disclosing”), as well as the word “Plus” at the start of the paragraph, both help clarify it’s related to what came shortly before.
Also “after” can easily be read to to refer to relevant people’s responses at the time, not to mean indefinitely in the future for anyone. If someone was stuck and seeking help, etc … the whole described context applied to them … then I posted negatively about coffee … then they didn’t disclose after that … then they kept being stuck and kept asking for help for additional years … that is problematic. I think that actually happened with multiple people but I still don’t have very accurate information about who did what when for most people.
There were also other clarifying parts like:
I feel kinda like I have to police people’s entire lives or they’ll just massively sabotage their philosophy learning. But that isn’t my job, nor my place, and I don’t want to do it. Plus they put work into preventing me from policing their lives. They don’t regard that as help and don’t want it – at least that’s how they often act regardless of what they say. If they really seriously wanted help then, among many other things, they’d post hours of raw video of their learning activities and samples of other stuff in their lives. Which is something I’ve absolutely brought up before repeatedly and everyone just ignores me and doesn’t want to do it or talk about it or talk about why they won’t do it, etc.
Bold added. This indicates I don’t want or expect lots of disclosures about tons of things from ~everyone I talk with. It also helps clarify that the lack of sharing relevant information from some highly involved long-term posters is not accidental, and I was already aware of it in general.
That’s not intrusive, out of place nor inappropriate. It’s a reasonable response. The coldness, weirdness and lack of praise from some long term posters is bad; don’t copy their cargo culting (inaccurate copying without understanding) of me or whatever it is that creates a bad vibe. I’ve considered getting rid of all the veterans in order to get a more normal forum atmosphere but that plan has major problems. I’ve tried asking them to change but that’s been ineffective. I think if new people came at a rate faster than one at a time it would help, but no one is helping with marketing or sharing much, most of the world doesn’t want ideas that contradict a bunch of what they currently believe, and also a bunch of people are trying pretty hard to keep me obscure (but I’m not sure if that actually matters – I’ve never seen people or discussions in their larger community that actually seemed very good that I’d particularly want to have … I seem to get better people but there aren’t enough of them. Or maybe a bunch of better people reject the dumber community but don’t find me and just don’t talk anywhere I can see that they exist – maybe the bad Popperian communities are just filtering out almost everyone good so that those people just give up on Popper and look elsewhere. idk. Despite being good I had much lower standards when I was new, and that’s gotta be fairly common. Anyway it’s hard to tell how common good people are – anyone who might ever do anything philosophically productive.).
Anyway this is one of the many cases where writing a lot is easier than writing something short and I’m not gonna edit. I have a lot of writing skill automatized and this just replaced some time watching TV or playing video games. That’s one of the major reasons I’ve tried to have a more active forum: because a lot of forum discussion is really easy for me because I already created a lot of skill and automatization related to it. So even if the discussion isn’t great, the cost/benefit often works out for me due to low costs. But as I’ve learned more it’s gotten really hard to get much benefit from e.g. EA or LW level low quality, or worse twitter, or more broadly from the kind of comment section all over the internet where people tend to speak to you 1-3 times (weighted towards 1, not equally weighted) and then just stop so the conversations never go anywhere.