Methinks ’tis time to update a ‘net classic

The world needs a social justice version of John Baez’ classic simple method for rating potentially revolutionary contributions to physics AKA The Crackpot Index, to rate our never-ending “feedback” from troglodytes of assorted stripes who are convinced that not only are we Doin It Rong but that we deserve to be threatened into silence for daring to have an opinion in the first place.

For starters, it needs a less ableist title, obviously.  Some link-link goodness for any injokes would be good. Somewhere, there needs to be a reference to ManCaveThrust, because that’s exactly the sort of commentor who should manage an impressively high score on our index, since the grading scale would be pretty much the exact opposite of how Scalzi grades his hate-mail.

Suggestions? On any of Baez’ 37 criteria? Or condensing it down to under 20 criteria maybe?

Categories: culture wars, fun & hobbies, language, Meta, social justice

Tags: , , , , ,

15 replies

  1. As exemplified by this ask on This Is Thin Privilege, could there be some kind of rating for someone who insists that their silencing tactics are just them being genuinely curious and starry-eyed with wonder about the issue?

  2. … I kept reading that as Joan Baez.

  3. I only discovered the index today, and it made me laugh. Even I, as a lowly graduate student who never published a paper in physics, still got some random person emailing me with their astonishing new theory that would overturn the world of particle physics. And then there was the book that I have only ever seen in the public library in the small town where my parents live, that proposed that the theory of general relativity was totally wrong, and gravity was, in fact, caused by the pressure of cosmic rays….
    And me too, Kitteh!

  4. Okay, looking over the list:
    * Keep the first four criteria intact. They’re accurate enough across the full range of subjects and areas of discussion. Ditto criteria 7, 10, 14, 16, and 33.
    * Alter 23 from “science fiction works or myths” to “fictional works of any genre, mythology of any culture, or cultural legends of any culture”.
    * Alter 8 to read “5 points for any mention of an expert in a field where said expert’s name is incorrectly spelled or incorrectly cited”.
    * New offering: “10 points for listing any popular culture ‘personality’ as an expert in a field (unless also supplying documentary proof of said ‘personality’ having appropriate qualifications and expertise).”
    That’s just an early list of recommendations – I’ll keep working on it, and see what I can come up with.
    (In between trying to dissuade myself from going to the TimeCube site and rating it on the Crackpot Index… do numbers go up high enough?)

  5. You could present it more simply by putting it in a table format, each criteria listed according to how many points it scores. That would give the appearance of reducing the number of criteria without actually necessarily doing so.

  6. someone who insists that their silencing tactics are just them being genuinely curious and starry-eyed with wonder about the issue?
    Perhaps 5 or 10 points for every instance of “I’m just asking…”?
    Another 10 or 20 for each instance of “I’m just trying to provide food for thought.”

  7. Oh, there should also be a 40 any claim amounting to “You know I’m right deep down, you’re just deceiving yourself.”

  8. … or the classic “just playing devil’s advocate” … that could be a 20 I think.

  9. You could have no 9 but change ‘quantum mechanics’ to ‘sociology/social science’

  10. 5 points (?) each for any use of the following: Politically Correct, PC, Confected outrage, luvvie, “industry” to describe social justice activism… I’m sure I’ll think of more…

  11. Points for mentioning “the way things have always been”, “the natural order of things”, or generalising their own personal experience to be how things are worldwide.
    I was thinking for a name we need an acronym, which will allow for quite a long name, with a much shorter day-to-day usage.

  12. 30 points for any discussion of evolutionary psychology having merit.

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