This is a difficult medium to carry on conversations with any kind of sarcasm. “Nonsense is a kind word...” [in the plant names thread] is difficult to read without having access to facial expressions and body language. I’m sure that this point was not offered with venom, but how do we know that?
I find that I post less and less these days and when I do my posts are always loaded with cautionary language like, “I offer this link without vouching for its accuracy in tone or facticity.” I also re-read my notes endlessly to find possible points of entry for those who would find fault.
I also have a sense that there are too many folks too ready to tear apart an offering, but don’t themselves actually start threads here. And yet, starting threads is the life-blood of this discussion. There are a number of folks who ask questions here that could easily be answered by a quick search using the simplest of tools. But the questions themselves usually lead to a spin that only this discussion can bring to the table.
I would recommend that we be more careful in our dissection of the opening posts whether by old-timers or newcomers.
I think that Dr. T has the right approach, again in the plant-name thread, by begging pardon before offering criticism. It seems like such a social excess, I suppose (we should all be big people), but such a courtesy guards against taking things the wrong way which is always a danger in on-line conversations as has been pointed out in various web venues for the last decade or more, maybe even from the very infancy of the internet itself.