The more observant of you would have probably realised that I haven't been active for a little while now, neither on the Atheism Union, nor Off Topic. There is a reason for that; a few months ago I decided that I would not continue posting on this site, not in any capacity whatsoever. Please don't be mistaken; this is not a bitter retreat from this site after some ill-advised debate or spiteful grudge. I simply cannot continue to invest so much precious time functioning in this virtual society. I've just come to the point now, where I feel that the real, tangible world is so more rich and inviting, and that every moment spent on GameSpot could be better spent either by reading, studying, learning, seeing, or generally interacting with the 'real' world somehow.
The main reason why I came to GameSpot was to debate, and I've had some fantastic debates over the years. Now though, I feel that I've debated every topic to be had; debated every user that is worth debating, and cried 'Ad Hominem' and 'Strawman' far more times than I could care to keep count. Don't confuse the message though, I'm certainly glad of the two or so years I've spent here -- not only do I think I've gained a greater grasp of any logical and analytical skills I may have already had, but I would also say that I now understand people better as a result of my many interactions, be it cordial or not, with just some of the multitude of users who regularly use GameSpot.
There are good and bad points though, for which it would be criminal to neglect. In terms of the good, I think that you guys are undeniably intelligent, some of you are brilliantly intelligent I would say. What makes OT so enjoyable is that some of you have a razor-sharp understanding of logic and deduction, which provides a meaningful paradigm of debate, which quite frankly is almost impossible to achieve in the real world. Deception is rife in the media-controlled world we now fatefully live in, and it is reassuring to know that at least some people have the minds to see past the manipulation lauded at us. What's more, this understanding has led some of you to develop sound ethical frameworks which really puts fairness at the heart of its mission. Quite frankly OT, you put the politicians, televangelists and pseudo-moralists and ethicists to shame. For that I commend you.
On the bad side though, manifest in all of you (myself included) is the peculiarities and irrationalities of the human race. Firstly, I'm finding the emotional hang-ups present in some of your philosophies to be disturbing. You're starting to argue from the heart, and not the head, which is surely the death knell of all philosophy. Some of you are so insightful but weighed down by the dogmas of your heart. Secondly, the band-wagon effect seems to be rife in OT. Some of you forgo any rational discourse and choose instead merely to choose the option which user A may agree with, or user B may agree with. You are so desperate to be popular, that you will regurgitate the words that sounds so delightful to the OT intelligentsia; that will ingratiate you with the masses. Be a maverick, say what you want to say! Extinguish the thought-police within your own mind.
Now there are a lot of people that I've met on GS, but I want to give a particular shout to some people. I do apologise, as inevitably I would have missed somebody out that I shouldn't have:
So a big props to:
LJS9502_basic, GabuEx, Foxhound_fox, Xaos, BiancaDK, Pianist, gameguy, Foolz3h, iloveflash, dvader, Theokhoth (sos about messing with you before -- I acted like a real douchebag), Teenaged, Genetic Code, Domatron23, Btaylor, Sun_Tzu, Diety_Slapper, Funky_Llama, Blood_Scribe, sm128, blackregiment, AnObscureName, Bourbons3, Jointed, Lansdowne, BumFluff, danwallacefan, frattracide, batboy, Gambler3, ghoklebutter, mindstorm. Elraptor.
I'm sure I've missed some people out.
As for me, I will most probably (as long as I don't majorly mess up my exams) be studying biological natural sciences at the University of Cambridge. I plan to be some sort of scientist one day.
Anyhow, I guess this really is farewell. GameSpot has, and you all have taught me a lot, and I always want to learn. It has been a blast.