Should we ignore the premise?
Let us consider the following, exaggerated, cases:
In the first, a question is posted, reading
If someone's life is in imminent danger due to a threat of a third person, am I justified in using lethal force agains that third person?
and in the second case, the text posted is
Today, I overheard someone saying they wish ...
Excellent question! Thank you for taking the time to ask it.
Academia is a subculture. Like almost every other subculture, it has its own social mores and norms. Many of the questions here are asking about those "you have to be there to know it" aspects of academia. To that extent, (in my opinion,) if the question seems to requires knowledge of the field, ...
Many of the questions that we get on Academia related to ethics necessarily involve "grey" areas, since what is the most ethical choice, as you suggest, may not be the most practical choice.
However, I believe we would be remiss if we, as a board, did not encourage best practices—what we believe should be done in a given situation. Of course, people reading ...
For future similar questions, in my opinion we should put the question on hold immediately (with reason "unclear what you are asking"), so that it can be edited and improved by the OP without receiving inappropriate answers. Sometimes putting it on hold only means putting it on hold, not closing it, and this is one of those cases.
(As noted by @djechlin, it ...
@RQM's answer (and my guess as well) in a nutshell: people were questioning the premise because they were worried that if they were to answer the question literally, their answer would be misapplied to a situation that doesn't fit it. I find this a reasonable worry given the original post, and would probably have done the same.
Lots of answers on various ...
You should challenge the premise because that is what intelligent people do.
The OP gave background to a situation. She had nothing more to add when questioned about this background. So to those answering the question we took the background as complete and fact.
The question "how to deal with sexism?" is not a question, or at least one appropriate for ...
I don't think you should delete your answer. Even though it doesn't address the OP's situation exactly, it's a good answer that can be useful to others experiencing a similar situation within their institution. The disclaimer you added should be enough to warn the reader.
Here's the FAQ on how reputation works. The one-point cost is simply to discourage massive downvote campaigns. Honestly, you should ignore it... it's more worthwhile to both yourself and the community if you upvote good stuff and downvote bad stuff. If you're concerned about reputation, give good answers to questions over time. If you're not concerned about ...
What I look for in answers: (i.e., what I typically upvote)
A neutral, down-to-earth tone
A fresh take on a question (i.e., don't make your answer start with "I agree with XY")
Substantial answers (very short answers are not typically very useful to me)
A user that, based on her/his bio and SE habitus, seems trustworthy to answer the question
Sources, if ...
The following is a good paraphrase of a conversation I had with a junior colleague yesterday:
I: I just wanted to say that I would have discussed the issue of coauthorship of this paper with you if I thought there was any chance that you would consider it.
She: I didn't contribute any of the results of the paper.
I: Yes, but I've seen cases where people ...
I think the answers to the original question were appropriate to the specific situation presented: it would be a bad idea to assume sexism was the reason for the student's actions.
Now the OP has a different question: what to do when there is sexism.
The best way to ask that is as a separate question, not an edit of the old question. A new question could ...
This is a very difficult area for our forum, as most of the answers and advice dispensed here is not borne of thoroughly research, but rather real-life (and therefore pretty localized) battle scars.
Personally, I favor the "hands-off" approach; policing this sort of thing is very tedious, with minimal benefit, as the community tends to do a good job ...
I think some reasons may be
People on academia.SE don't truly care about anonymous Internet posters in the same way they care for their family and friends. They would rather uphold ethics than side with a random person, but in real life they would side with their friends rather than upholding ethics.
Many people on academia.SE post under their real name, ...
I have a pet peeve about nonacademics answering questions on this site. But not with all of them; only with those evincing a certain kind of behavior. Namely, what irks me tremendously is those who answer questions about academia but refuse to comment on or acknowledge their lack of academic expertise.
(In fact this is not limited to non-academics. I ...
I don't know if this question asks about what we should look for or what we are looking for. I ran this query and extracted the answers that received 100 votes or more*.
Here are the links to the best voted answers to date in decreasing order of vote count:
At least for me, it is (for some reason) psychologically easier to just drop into a question a leave a short comment than to write an answer. If I write an actual answer, I usually try to put down at least ~15 minutes of writing time (I try to not write very short answers), and sometimes I just don't have the time. For comments, 5 seconds are enough.
I think that, without forbidding experience-based answers and anecdotal evidence, we should push ourselves a little harder towards fact-based and statistics-based answers. There are quite a few questions on the site who are answered mostly with “I advise you to do this” or “I observed around me that X is more common than Y”, and which could be much improved ...
Just in peeking through your answers on the site so far, although you've gotten a lot of upvotes on some (likely through the HNQ bloat, as others have pointed out), lots of your answers don't answer the actual question, and are more like extended comments on other answers.
Some of this might be because you lack the "insider information" necessary to answer ...
I don’t think we can be much more objective in answers than we currently are.
Many of our questions are about problems that are far beyond the reach of studies or are far too individual for somebody to have relevant personal experience. Hence, we are only left with basing our answers on good arguments, which is what we often do. Often “as data- and ...
I like a lot an answer by Suresh to Are we presenting an idealised view of academia?, i.e. that we should make a split:
what we would all like to happen
what typically happens
what should NOT happen under any circumstances (even if it's sadly not rare)
what is completely abnormal.
I understand that [survival bias, etc] many profs here may ...
The reason is that one-sentence answers are frowned upon as independent answers on Stack Exchange sites. Therefore people tend to view material that firs into a comment as too short to be a free-standing answer. I don't think there's an easy fix for this, as it's a cultural issue.
Well, I'm just a Masters' student, so most of my academia knowledge is very basic.
However, note that all answers are judged by their content (and form), not their creator. Hence, as long as an answer that is useful, but not necessarily from an academic perspective, it can be accepted.
One example of such an answer could be this one:
Yes, you should read through the answers that have already been posted, as an answer that largely duplicates someone else's answer might otherwise be flagged for plagiarism.
You should post a new answer when you have something new to contribute to the question at hand. Just reposting the same information under the claim of having more expertise is a waste of ...
Adding to the other things already said, I also think it is very valuable when an answer delves into the principles and reasoning the lead the poster to answer in the way that they did. I think that this is particularly valuable because many answers are derived from a broader scientific or pedagogical ethos. Communicating that ethos helps beyond the ...
As originally written, the question was:
So I am not necessarily soliciting an answer specific to my situation,
but in a more general setting.
If you witness a student engaging in a sexist behavior, would you call
him/her out? How would you do this without making the student feel
If this were the original question and no other context was ...
(takes off moderator hat, puts on regular user hat.) I support the following, as an approach that helps people keep their contributed content roughly as they intend it to look:
Keep the question as is. Clearly, the current form is what the OP wants, and most of the answers do address the general question (even if some also refer to the specific example that ...
In other words, do the answers here necessarily reflect the accepted
answers to questions or problems of whole academic community?
No. There's no reason or evidence to believe that this community is a representative sample of academia as a whole. And, as you note, a number of reasons to believe that this isn't the case - namely, that many of the natural "...