[discuss] [IANAtransition] Troll

Shatan, Gregory S. GShatan at ReedSmith.com
Wed Apr 16 23:17:45 UTC 2014

I don't know Goodwin's Law.  If you are referring to Godwin's Law, we have not reached that point in discourse, yet, so I don't think it applies.

I'm not sure how the claim that I have "lost the argument" follows from your prior statements, or is true in any fashion.  In my reading on "fallacies of argument," I don't believe I came upon "unilateral declarations of victory" as one of the commonly cited fallacies.  But it probably should be.

Since you as a Frenchman follow the French "official definition" and I as an American, find my (different) usage supported in the American Heritage Dictionary among other places, I think that underlines my prior point, which is that there are variant meanings, and if one wants to say "personal attack," it may be better to just say it, since "ad hominem" will be understood by some and not others to be synonymous with "ad hominem."  While it would be amusing to further explore "ad hominem," it would not be germane to this list.  I'd rather try to define "multistakeholder...."

Greg Shatan

From: JFC Morfin [mailto:jefsey at jefsey.com]
Sent: Wednesday, April 16, 2014 11:18 AM
To: Shatan, Gregory S.; 'Michel Gauthier'; Jay Daley; ianatransition at icann.org; discuss at 1net.org List
Subject: RE: [IANAtransition] Troll


You are obviously an honest person. Kudos.

Even if you did not take Latin at school,
1. you know about Goodwin's law. You have, therefore, lost the argument, if there was one :-) !
2. you can accept that there are two different things to name: to discuss other people's texts or person.

The difficulty with English is the "common law" syndrome, where the commonly used meaning precedes the "contracted" (in dictionary/etymology) meaning. This is a big problem for the naming space that we are discussing here as non english-native may think it makes it unstable, and inadequate for computers direct entry. This is the main reason for the distrust in some Anglo-Saxon global taxonomies (where they easily confuse the name that one should put on the record and the object one can sell). This is perhaps why ISO uses English and French texts. Each language has their own complementary pros and cons: let say that English is advantageous for politically changing standards and French for norms.

I am sorry, but I am French and I follow the French official definition (very short) that you can find at http://www.cnrtl.fr/definition/ad%20hominem. This is Schopenhauer's definition, which is well known in "mail-combat".

It is worse than Goodwin's Law, which only refers to texts. Ad hominem is often the path to ad personam, which among honest, intelligent, informed, independent people demonstrates an inability to oppose the person's arguments, either by personal incapacity or by logical impossibility.

Now, my strategy is simple, it is to evidence the boringly hidden evidences that harm people's interests and, therefore, my, and my people's and friend's, interests.

In 1977, I was interested in Associations and SoHo operational networking and I wanted to build my own civil and professional international networking capability, optimizing to my advantage what was credibly proposed in the digital field.

There were three credible network technology applied "cultures";
- one was private by Norm Hardy. It was user centric (Tymnet),
- one was French Gov. research. As such it was open network centric by Louis Pouzin,
- one was French PTT projected plans. That Rémi Desprès has technically led.

The difference was in the globalism, equality, and neutrality priority order.

The CCITT (ITU) project favored equality among the users. It was to start from the global monopolistic bandwidth and add a data capacity on an equal footing for everyone. This is what the French Gov. favored with Transpac and Minitel.

Vint Cerf's project (EIN 48) favored the extension of local to global in a first time, to experiment first a global coverage for the USG ARPA, and then to extend it to other technologies.

I chose to follow the first one. Tymnet provided me (and everyone, which is why we made 100% of the international packet switch services start using it) with a neutral and open capacity that soon proved to be consensually accepted as global and reasonably equal (within the structural limits of the US law; no problem in France once Transpac started). I created  further the Tymnet Extended Services department, including our "Eurolab" with the "VGN for all" project and even a both-ways international Minitel gateway, with US and Canadian Minitel accesses.

Obviously, politics interfered: the French Gov closed Louis Pouzin's project at the end of 1978 that we had planned to interconnect, but we connected ARPA to support Jean Ichbiah ADA work at CII-HB (which produced the machines for the two French projects). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean_Ichbiah. We were all in the Paris west-area.

Legally, there was the need to compose with communications monopolies.

1.  the FCC had to introduce neutrality vs. non-neutrality (basic vs. value-added [now enhanced] services) to permit Telenet and Tymnet to legally operate outside of the ATT Bell System monopoly. In addition, the FCC gave Tymnet a license to document the US naming, as Telenet only used digital addresses (IP and key CCITT X.25 contributors with the French teams).

2. we deployed network traffic and technology neutrality worldwide with PTTs, where there was no legal problem. This made us hold mixed public operators/private network projects (at that time, I attended Group III meetings in Geneva in the State Department delegation!).

However, international and technological network neutrality (we had a large catalog of [cross-technology interfaces]) turned out to be to the US mainstream industry disadvantage in permitting French, Canadian, German, and US start-ups to compete with them. McDonnell Douglas counter-strategically acquired Tymnet and strangled its technological neutrality, while PTTs in several countries made neutrality legal: the OSI platform was the law and it was to be contractually guaranteed by operators.

Architecturally things have not changed very much but they have matured. The Internet developed based on Louis Pouzin's datagram and network of networks catenet concepts, but it is still at its first experimental stage. It has, therefore, not reached the transparent neutrality capability. It is still unable to interconnect non-I*technologies, hence all the Web, Apps, etc. patches that have been made a "feature" by the RFC 6852 economic standardization paradigm. It is still unable to support privacy, prevent spam, insure security, etc. There is only one thing it does well: support non-neutrality.

The architectural reason why is that there is a lack of a border between the network and the user areas: the concept of a smart multi-technology and robust barbican (OSI presentation layer six) has not been implemented yet (people are only allowed to build firewalls, anti-viruses, spam-filters, use ISP nameservers, daily lose their IP address). This has permitted the fostering of a non-neutral intrusive (they call it inclusive) technical practice, decentralized among main edge providers, i.e. true stakeholders (NSA, Google, Apple, Microsoft, Facebook, etc.) which populate and sponsor ISOC, Unicode, OpenStand, IEEE, W3C, etc.

However, IDAN2008 and RFC 5895 have shown that the EIN 48 project has nominally progressed. This is probably why the internet project fared so well: it is simple and consistent, even if it suffers from the Loc/ID BUG (in order to Be Unilaterally Global): IETF has developed all of what is end to end (barbican to barbican) necessary in order to build the Internet informed intelligent interfaced user (IUser)'s Barbican at the fringe (*) and to relate from Barbican to Barbican, as it was integrated in CCITT OSI and the core of the use oriented Tymnet neutrality.

(*)  Brian Carpenter will explain to you what it means. There is a divergence on the edge/barbican location. Vint Cerf wanted it on the network side, and I got it on the user-side. This is what is referred to as the "presentation layer on the user side" (PLUS).

This fully addresses my 1977 expectations, and what the WSIS unanimously demanded in calling for a "Human Righted" people centered information society. This is what the WCIT majority called for in Dubai. This permits the protection of our humanity from the "open gates" business greed of the US edge operators. This permits our personal democratic choices, and protects fair competition from MS collusion and economic invasion.

My only targets are:

1. to devise, develop, experiment, and deploy my digital relational space (VGN) from my "smart barbican" (or IUI: intelligent use interfaces) and organize with others the protected, free, and innovative digital fringe to fringe relational ties (this is the InterPLUS).

2. to test if the olicannopole wants to cooperate and dialog on an equal footing basis or not. I have nothing against them (and do not need them: they only use a very tiny portion of our technologically available common spectrum): we only need to know if we can cooperate or coexist in peace, or if they have decided that they cannot survive us. In that case, we will only ignore them, as long as they do not claim to represent and fight us. Anyway, time and self-ordered criticality play for us.

They should also remember who is paying them.

Obviously, banning on the ground that I am a dissenting Stakeholder or because I am not a Stakeholder who no right to free speech because I speak the truth about the technology and users would make an interesting last minute contribution to Sao Paulo.


PS. I suppose that if they ban me, they will quote this mail as having been sent after collective warning and will attach it to the decision. It will make at interesting reading for those wanting to understand how well ICANN has prepared this debate framework (and therefore its ability to frame far more complex IG cases than mine).

At 05:16 16/04/2014, Shatan, Gregory S. wrote:

I was going to say that you were the confused one, but instead, I did some research.  My conclusion is that the usage itself is hopelessly confused.  (In other words, neither of us are confused per se.)

A quick survey reveals that the use and meaning of the terms ad personam and ad hominem seem to be so thoroughly confused and jumbled, both in academic use and popular discourse, by so many people, that it is probably better to stay away from them entirely, and just say what one means without resort to Latin.

 Indeed, it appears that there are so many whole essays and scholarly articles -- even books -- written on the various meanings of ad hominem, that it would be worthless for us to discuss it.  I expect that if you brought a Classicist, a logician, a philosopher and a student of rhetoric (Classic? "New"?) together to discuss the meaning of ad hominem (and ad personam), they would probably come to blows.  And I'm sure that each one would say he (or she) was right and the others were wrong.  An argument among scholars of argument about differing theories of argument would be rather amusing....

Contrast the following:

A.  From Peter A. Angeles, Dictionary of Philosophy-- published by Barnes and Noble, copyright 1981.

3. Fallacy of argumentum ad hominem (argument against the man) . The Latin means "argument to the man." (a) Arguing against, or rejecting a person's views by attacking or abusing his personality, character, motives, intentions, qualifications, etc. as opposed to providing evidence why the views are incorrect. Example: "What John said should not be believed because he was a Nazi sympathizer."
6. Fallacy of argumentum ad personam (appeal to personal interest). Arguing by appealing to the personal likes (preferences, prejudices, predispositions, etc.) of others in order to have an argument accepted.

B.  Arthur Schopenhauer, The Art of Controversy, XXXVIII:

A last trick is to become personal, insulting, rude, as soon as you perceive that your opponent has the upper hand, and that you are going to come off worst. It consists in passing from the subject of dispute, as from a lost game, to the disputant himself, and in some way attacking his person. It may be called the argumentum ad personam, to distinguish it from the argumentum ad hominem, which passes from the objective discussion of the subject pure and simple to the statements or admissions which your opponent has made in regard to it.

C.  Listverse, 30 Latin Terms Explained:

Ad Hominem: An ad hominem argument consists of replying to an argument or factual claim by attacking a characteristic or belief of the person making the argument or claim, rather than by addressing the substance of the argument or producing evidence against the claim. It is most commonly used to refer specifically to the ad hominem abusive, or argumentum ad personam, which consists of criticizing or personally attacking an argument$B!G(Bs proponent in an attempt to discredit that argument.

D.  The American HeritageR Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition copyright c2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Updated in 2009. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

ad hom$B!l(Bi$B!&(Bnem$B!l(B adv.
Usage Note: As the principal meaning of the preposition ad suggests, the homo of ad hominem was originally the person to whom an argument was addressed, not its subject. The phrase denoted an argument designed to appeal to the listener's emotions rather than to reason, as in the sentence "The Republicans' evocation of pity for the small farmer struggling to maintain his property is a purely ad hominem argument for reducing inheritance taxes." This usage appears to be waning; only 37 percent of the Usage Panel finds this sentence acceptable. The phrase now chiefly describes an argument based on the failings of an adversary rather than on the merits of the case: Ad hominem attacks on one's opponent are a tried-and-true strategy for people who have a case that is weak. Ninety percent of the Panel finds this sentence acceptable. The expression now also has a looser use in referring to any personal attack, whether or not it is part of an argument, as in "It isn't in the best interests of the nation for the press to attack him in this personal, ad hominem way." This use is acceptable to 65 percent of the Panel. $B!&(B Ad hominem has also recently acquired a use as a noun denoting personal attacks, as in "Notwithstanding all the ad hominem, Gingrich insists that he and Panetta can work together" (Washington Post). This usage may raise some eyebrows, though it appears to be gaining ground in journalistic style. $B!&(B A modern coinage patterned on ad hominem is ad feminam, as in "Its treatment of Nabokov and its ad feminam attack on his wife Vera often border on character assassination" (Simon Karlinsky). Though some would argue that this neologism is unnecessary because the Latin word homo refers to humans generically, rather than to the male sex, in some contexts ad feminam has a more specific meaning than ad hominem, being used to describe attacks on women as women or because they are women, as in "Their recourse ... to ad feminam attacks evidences the chilly climate for women's leadership on campus" (Donna M. Riley).

E.  Argumentation Theory after the New Rhetoric, Frans H.  van Eemeren (in l$B!G(Banalisi linguistica e letteraria xvii (2009) 1)

In their definition of argumentum ad hominem, Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca refer to Schopenhauer.  Unlike Schopenhauer, they see nothing reprehensible in this form of argumentation. They even argue that without ad hominem argumentation it would be impossible to win others over to a particular standpoint.  In their view, ad hominem does not denote a specific (and incorrect) argumentation technique, but a general characteristic of all successful argumentation.  According to the new rhetoric, arguing ad hominem means starting from the audience$B!G(Bs opinions concerning facts and values.  Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca place ad hominem on the same level as arguing ex concessis.  Arguing ad hominem amounts to utilizing what the audience is prepared to concede (concedere).

Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca also discuss the argumentation technique of personally attacking the opposition.  in order to avoid confusion, they do not call this technique argumentum ad hominem but argumentum ad personam. They do not reject a personal attack on the opposition. They do warn, however, that in certain cases it is not so expedient because it may have the reverse effect.  Scientific audiences in particular, have a low esteem of personal attacks. Then the attack on the opposition backfires and the speaker$B!G(Bs (or writer$B!G(Bs) own standing, prestige and credibility are reduced.

F. Jefsey

"This is all the easier in English in that the confusion between the two phrases [ad hominem and ad personam] already belongs to the common language."  http://www.ietf.org/mail-archive/web/iucg/current/msg00610.html <http://www.ietf.org/mail-archive/web/iucg/current/msg00610.html%A0> (Part of a very long thread devoted to use/misuse/differing use of "ad hominem")

-----Original Message-----
From: Michel Gauthier [ mailto:mg at telepresse.com]
Sent: Tuesday, April 15, 2014 7:03 PM
To: Shatan, Gregory S.; 'Jefsey'; Jay Daley; ianatransition at icann.org<mailto:ianatransition at icann.org>; discuss at 1net.org<mailto:discuss at 1net.org> List
Subject: Re: [IANAtransition] Troll


I am afraid you confuse ad hominem and ad personam. I think one should be carefull at not cofnusing terms, because this would to exactly do what Jefsey wants: to show the NTIA, the world and FLOSS that the ICANN MS community can only ban competition and is unable to cooperate with VGN Masters. This would legitimate their claim that they must develop their own "fail secure plan for the net" in case they are unwelcome.  They would love that you ban a network pioneer:
he would make the head-lines during Sao Paulo, and ten other ones would replace him.


At 23:53 15/04/2014, Shatan, Gregory S. wrote:
>"Ad Hominem is a general category of fallacies in which a claim or
>argument is rejected on the basis of some irrelevant fact about the
>author of or the person presenting the claim or argument."
>I don't see anything ad hominem about Jay Daley's message, since it
>goes to the nature of the texts, not the writer.  On the other hand,
>accusing someone of being a mouthpiece for another organization or
>"blundering", strikes me as ad hominem.
>Greg Shatan
>-----Original Message-----
>From: ianatransition-bounces at icann.org<mailto:ianatransition-bounces at icann.org>
>[ mailto:ianatransition-bounces at icann.org] On Behalf Of Jefsey
>Sent: Tuesday, April 15, 2014 5:45 PM
>To: Jay Daley; ianatransition at icann.org<mailto:ianatransition at icann.org>; discuss at 1net.org<mailto:discuss at 1net.org> List
>Subject: Re: [IANAtransition] Troll
>At last!
>It took time! To know what would be the ICANN decision!
>So it is delivered through an NZ ad-hominem. Good, now we know.
>Sorry, I am quite buzzy right now....
>I will come back on this later on.
>PS. If this was not an ICANN decision but an individual blunder, ICANN
>people can let me know.
>At 22:51 15/04/2014, Jay Daley wrote:
> >Are there others out there who would agree with me that this list is
> >being overwhelmed by messages from at least one troll?  In particular
> >messages that make ludicrous claims, provide nonsensical analysis,
> >follow arbitrary directions and altogether are disruptive to the
> >conversation taking place?
> >In my view this list is too important and already too time consuming
> >to allow any trolls to disrupt it in this way.
> >If so then what if any process do we have for removing such a troll?
> >I note that the IETF, which is a long established multi-stakeholder
> >organisation has also had problems like this and has occasionally had
> >to ban people.  Those bans were then subject to two levels of appeal:
> >
> > https://www.ietf.org/iesg/appeal.html
> > https://www.iab.org/appeals/
> >
> >cheers
> >Jay
> >
> >PS I have posted the same message to discuss at 1net.org<mailto:discuss at 1net.org>
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