Information and Resources
Last updated 23 January 1999
There is also an official Undernet #atheism homepage which grew out of a general effort to coordinate and improve the design of the two or three sources of #atheism information which existed at the time, including this one. ShaiHulud gets credit for the idea, all the visual design, and most of the general elbow grease. Content was primarily provided by ShaiHulud, Elladan, AltKey, and Heathen. We nearly killed ourselves assembling a truly awesome repository of links and information. Okay, not really. But ShaiHulud put a lot of work into it and it looks better than this page. So check it out anyway.
#atheism is an IRC channel where atheists and others can congregate to chat about a multitude of topics, some of which include atheism, religion and mythology, philosophy, politics, computers, science fiction, and music. All viewpoints are welcome, but people who become offensive or disruptive will be removed. The responsibility of removing these elements is assumed by the #atheism chanops. It is our job as chanops to keep #atheism a relatively nice place to chat.
Undernet #atheism was established by Elladan. Because he does not have much time to devote to the management of the channel, the managerial duties have been passed to Heathen and AltKey, with AltKey registered in W as the official channel manager. The channel is currently served by three bots, who distribute operator status and perform other useful services: Episiarch, who is operated by Elladan; W, who is a Undernet CSC bot; and HeathBot, who operated by Heathen (duh).
Because of its nature, #atheism receives a relatively large number of annoying evangelists and apologists, who often trot out the same arguments over and over as though they were some miraculously new and rational arguments that we'd never seen before. In an effort to help eliminate this pointless, inane repetition of the same idiotic arguments over and over again, there are several writeups on common evangelical arguments hosted on this web site; I wrote most myself, but some have been written by others or in collaboration with others.
A large number of debates also center around semantic issues, such as the definitions of atheism vs. agnosticism. Such arguments are at best repetitions of arguments well established in published literature, and at worst are intensely boring and exasperating. As a community service, I am working in conjunction with the #atheism community at large to develop a glossary of relevant terms for discussion on #atheism, which defines a number of important terms as they are used on-channel.
Of course, section 34A of the IRC Channel Homepage code reads:
Any homepage which serves as the homepage for an IRC channel shall henceforth be required to have a page of the nicks of the regulars and/or channel operators of the aforementioned channel.Thus, in compliance with the code, here is the Undernet #atheism regulars page (along with some notable not-so-regulars).
Although in an ideal world, a channel such as #atheism could exist as a free and unmoderated forum, it is unfortunately very clear that this world is not ideal. In order to keep #atheism a friendly place in which to carry on conversation, and to preserve the security of the channel from miscreants abusing IRC or other network services, channel operators on #atheism are invested with the authority to remove users from the channel, either temporarily or permanently. Operators also form the core government of the channel, by consensually deciding issues of channel policy.
As channel moderators, channel operators on #atheism are authorized to kick or ban users for disruption of conversation and attacks on channel security. Offenses which constitute these include, but are not limited to:
#atheism's ops system is currently a hierarchy of four main levels, two of which could be compressed into a single level. The first level is the normal chanops, who generally have access levels of 100. This is the entry level for ops. The next level is essentially part of the first; the trusted low ops, who have levels slightly above those of the standard issue ops, usually 110, 150, 200, or somesuch. Above these two levels are the few 400 ops, who are entrusted to add new users to W, change user info, et cetera, and finally a triumvirate of channel managers, composed of myself, Elladan, and AltKey. You can view the current #atheism ops list, according to W in your browser.