The Art of Derailing a Thread.

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Citizen B
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You know who could really derail a conversation? The master:

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Riff89Ruffinogold
---They'll paint daisies on my coffin.
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Citizen B
Senior Member
Posts: 1659
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2020 6:03 pm

Highjacking and derailing are two different things.

The other day, another distinguished gentleman who is not you and I got involved in a quick back and forth in what could have been a simple derailment, but it turned into a highjack. We both called it off and let the thread take its natural course to senescence and eventual natural death.

Never disrespect the intention of the original poster. Always try to stay, at least tangentially, on topic. No matter how off base you are, tie in to the thread's main theme so that you don't give up the jig too early. A good derailment takes time.

Never try to derail too early in the thread's evolution. You can't derail something that isn't yet on track---that's highjacking. Nobody likes a highjacker.

Wait for others to pick up on the breadcrumbs you are dropping. When two people are just riffing off each other at the thread's expense, the only people who enjoy reading that are the two people involved. Ruff and I learned that a long time ago. People click on a thread to see where it is going based not he subject matter. They don't click on a thread to see somebody showing off how clever they think they are.

Be careful what you wish for. Most attempts at derailment will result in zero interest. Patience is a virtue. If you try too hard you will fail harder than you expected, clever monkey. Sometimes, a successful derailment will make you look like a horse's ass from behind. You take you chances when you try to temporarily steer a thread off topic.

Temporary derailment is the touch of a maestro. Highjacking a thread is taking it over and killing it. Derailing a thread is creating a diversion, getting off track for a a few posts, maybe a page worth, but there is always ample opportunity to get back on track. On a truly derailed thread, vs. a highjacked one, the destination is the same as the OP intended. A highjacked thread goes in a totally different direction than what anyone expects or cares about except for the highjacker.
---They'll paint daisies on my coffin.
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