What exactly is virtue signalling?

miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

I'm not looking for the definition, I know that. I can recognize what some people refer to as "virtue signalling."
.
What I don't understand is why some comments are simply accepted as a statement of the posters' values and beliefs, while others are labeled with the "virtue signalling" pejorative.
.
Any thoughts?

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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

Well that's serendipitous!


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patriciae_gw(07)

I have been wondering about this myself. The first person I noticed using this was Texasranger. It never made any sense in any context I read but there you are. Do we post what we post or have the opinions we have in order to appear virtuous? Why virtuous? I looked up virtue and still didn't get it. So I ignored it as inexplicable. So explic away please.

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rhoder551 zone 9b-10

I'm still puzzling over social justice warrior... I can't / don't want to keep up.

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tony jelly

Isn't it, "Hey look at me I am virtuous."

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vgkg Z-7 Va(Z-7)

...and you can be too!"

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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

Yes, the definition I understand is what Tony said, and the uses I've seen are what others have pointed out.

What I don't get is why some mentions of beliefs are considered virtue signalling and others aren't.

Am I overthinking it? Is it just a meaningless insult that should be shook off?

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Ziemia(6a)

Isn't it, "Hey look at me I am virtuous."

Yes that is virtue signaling. I see TrumpFans here calling out Dems and NotTrumpers here for it. Though I rarely if ever see it by a NotTrumper. (Yes, that term isn't very good but you get my intention I think. Allergies are messing with me.)

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blfenton

This reminds me of those who profess to be Christian but their behaviour and nonacceptance of those who are different than them signals otherwise. I would never call them on it because someone with a higher power than I will do so.

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patriciae_gw(07)

I forgot about social justice warrior.

If it is hypocrisy then why not say so. Who is being signaled? is it like semaphores so that only people who know the code know what you are signaling?

I am going with misinterpretation. As a wild eyed liberal I take it to mean me. I am being misinterpreted. That doesn't sound quite right does it. Oh well. If I were being polite I would say willfully misinterpreted since the other implies a lack on the part of the interpreter's abilities to interpret.

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Louise McCarthy

It's all about gas lighting. Just another way to discombulate and insult those that you dislike, find annoying or maybe even hate. I have only been around a short while and the viciousness and nastiness is quite remarkable here. Especially if you are not part of that special "in crowd". I have been around debate boards a long time and this ain't no debate board. It's only a Nasty Place to Insult.

I quite enjoy it just for the amusement.

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Joaniepoanie

These are just buzzwords/phrases the right learns on Fox and then works them into every post endlessly. It's very obvious when a new word or phrase pops up. I almost think we should have a "New Fox Word of the Week" thread very week.

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Joaniepoanie

Socialist Democrat Party.......case rested.

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HU9999

That's a good idea, Joanie, but you'd need someone to watch Fox News! I suspect you'd have trouble finding a volunteer. ;-)

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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

The only comment I couldn't understand was this one:

[catkinZ8a

59 minutes ago

It means that The Socialist Democrat Party is basically irretrievably fractured.]

Catkin can you clarify?

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petalique

Those who use this expression flash to other cult members that they are in the club, watch state tv, adhere to marching orders, pledge loyalty, promise not to think independently, but to chide and divide, offer trite retorts and worn memes; wear no other hat —- that sort of thing.

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catkinZ8a

Wrong thread, Linds!

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cait1

What I don't understand is why some comments are simply accepted as a
statement of the posters' values and beliefs, while others are labeled
with the "virtue signalling" pejorative
.

When a posters repeats the usual 'white supremacist/xenophobic/homophobic/raaacist blah blah ad nauseum without actually addressing or adding to a topic but just to call out minority posters, yes, I'd say they were signalling to majority posters that he/she is 'one of them' and is therefore 'virtuous' to the cause. When I see people 'like' those post, I really have to wonder why ad homs are so appealing. It takes more time and brains to counter an idea or argument than to attack a poster.

Here's an interesting article about it

https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/virtue-signalling

Within evolutionary anthropology, signalling theory[6]
has been used as a framework to explain various forms of communication
between humans, including public displays of commitment to solidify
membership within a particular group. In the context of religious
groups, anthropologist William Irons argued that the use of
"ostentatious" signals of commitment improved trust and cohesion within
communities, which he used to provide a possible adaptive explanation
for various religious rituals and beliefs
.

So something innocuous has been turned on its head.

It's first known usage as a pejorative was used by someone against a tuba player walking behind a KKK march.

On November 15th, evolutionary behavioral scientist Gad Saad released a
podcast describing "hashtag activism" and "flag displays" as examples of
virtue signalling, specifically in the context of social media posts
following the 2015 Paris terrorist attacks
.

Really? That sounds a bit mean. People were upset.

As for SJWs:

The earliest known use of the term "social justice warrior" as a
pejorative comes from the Blogspot blog Social Justice Warriors: Do Not
Engage,[2] launched on November 6th, 2009, which identifies SJWs as people who "rage, mob and dox in the belief that promoting identitarianism will make a better world."

https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/social-justice-warrior

Seems the internet has created new lingo to define internet behavior.

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marquest(PA zone 6)

It might help not to feel intimidated and fear of being a minority. Fear make people do unnecessary harmful things. I have seen that word a lot on HT coming from RW here on HT. It is becoming clear why the true minority Mexican, Muslim hate is coming from. Fear that some feel they are becoming a minority.

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Tilly Teabag

If I say I put a large quantity of flyers in mailboxes for animal welfare (I do) but not in context with the current conversation, or just to fit in with peers, or to look good, I’m virtue signalling.

If I say I do it, with the intention of inspiring others to do something for animal welfare, or if someone asked me why I’m tired, or what I did this week, I’m not virtue signalling.

If I say the statement that it helps me to lose weight or to keep fit, I’m not virtue signalling, because I’m admitting it’s not purely for selfless motives.

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catkinZ8a

Fear makes people do unnecessary harmful things. I have seen that word a lot on HT coming from the LW .

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catkinZ8a

Wrong.

If you say you're doing it at all, you're virtue signaling.

But you, doing acts of charity, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. Matthew 6:3

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Tilly Teabag

Bill Gates’ philanthropy was inspiring to other Uber rich people.


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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

I get what you're saying Tilly. At the same time, doesn't that definition depend entirely on how the reader interprets your statement?

In order for me to think you're virtue signalling, don't I have to assume that you are mentioning your mail box stuffing to look good or fit in with peers?

I could take a generous view and assume you are wanting to inspire others, or that you're proud of your hard work and want to talk about it. Then it wouldn't be virtue signalling?

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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

Catkin, I like that you called me Linds :-) It always makes me smile and not many people do it anymore.

It's interesting that you mentioned that Bible verse. I think in general most people look down on others who talk about how much they give to charity. There are rare exceptions such as the Gateses who do inspire others to follow their example.

I wouldn't have thought of apply the term "virtue signalling" to charitable giving, I was thinking about it more as behavioural or belief systems. It makes sense though and kind of helps me understand what could make people see some methods of talking about values as off-putting.

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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

Tilly Teabag does my user name bother you? You've mentioned it a couple of times now...

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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

If a woman wears a crucifix on a chain around her neck, is that "virtue signalling" or continuing a generations old tradition?

.

re social justice warriors -- how is this label reconciled with religions who teach the importance of social justice?

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Tilly Teabag

Nancy in venice

”If a woman wears a crucifix on a chain around her neck, is that "virtue signalling" or continuing a generations old tradition?”

I rarely take off the cross I wore to my wedding. I wear it for faith and sentimental reasons. These days one doesn’t get kudos for being Christian, so I can’t see how it’s virtue signalling.

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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

I haven't seen anything about her being back.

I've had several comments and threads deleted for discussing her so I won't except to say that my name is in reference to her time on design dilemma and she was added to my user name months before I ever posted on HT.

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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

Thanks Tilly. My messaging is enabled and I am open to hearing that feedback from anyone who wants to give it.

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cait1

My messaging is enabled and I am open to hearing that feedback from anyone who wants to give it.

This is an interesting conversation within this thread.

People may take it as you 'virtue signalling' by keeping the 'still miss...' you added to your name. Why are you signalling your devotion (?) to someone who often was obviously a controversial figure?

I'm not saying that is what you are doing at all. I didn't know that woman and you can choose whatever name you want within reason. But in context of your OP, has that addition to your name become a symbol to you and therefore a signal to others?

I find it interesting only in the context of virtue signalling and have no wish to discuss that woman or your handle. When does what we do descend in some minds to VS?


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marquest(PA zone 6)

Ha!!!!

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lionheart_gw (USDA Zone 5A, Eastern NY)

"For instance there are some on the right that feel that if Dems are not literally opening their front doors to asylum seekers and migrants they should be accused of virtue signaling about humanitarian support."

Exactly. Pretty much the entire point of virtue signaling is that the user gets to talk the talk but doesn't have to walk the walk.

Some do, most don't. It's not required because it's not the point.

Making a case for an issue is not virtue signaling. Supporting an idea or arguing against an idea is not virtue signaling. I don't think you are virtue signaling in that example.

On the other hand, dropping bombs like name calling or asserting empty platitudes are definitely a form of virtue signaling.

For example, if a thread is discussing ISIL, running in and saying "I hate Islamophobes" or "You and your kind are racists" is definitely virtue signaling, as it adds nothing to the conversation and probably doesn't even address what is actually being discussed. It's just a shameless opportunity to display virtue and increase your creds with your group.

I like most of the simpler answers above - it's a way to publicly display virtue, compete for moral superiority, and acquire a favorable status within a group.

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Mattie


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tony jelly

Nancy's question regarding wearing religious symbols to flag your faith or virtue is an interesting point. I used to know a 'man of the cloth' who would wear his dog collar all the time, I noticed on many occasions that people would give him a free pass that wasn't available to me, he was a nice kind man incidentally, and I mean incidentally.

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bob_cville

I think it is mostly just another instance of "New Fox Word of the Week". They coin a new insulting word of phrase, repeat it several times, and then scan the interwebs for that word or phrase to determine the speed and depth that that particular phrase percolated through the memeosphere. They then use that information to reach out to advertisers to show how widely their message will reach.

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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

People may take it as you 'virtue signalling' by keeping the 'still miss...'

When does what we do descend in some minds to VS?

----------

Great points cait.

I agree with you, and I must say that adding that endnote to my name was a signal. Not intended to show my virtue, but to point out an organization's shortcomings.

Your question is what has been on my mind as I write various statements about my values and in turn read other people's. I don't think I've ever thought "virtue signalling" about someone else but I have thought "yikes, might I be thought of as virtue signalling here?"

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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

"re social justice warriors -- how is this label reconciled with religions who teach the importance of social justice?"

That's a really interesting question nancy_in_venice, in fact I overheard a conversation between a lay pastor at my church and the head of the Social Ministry Committee regarding this. He was suggesting that it might be best to change the name because there was starting to be pushback to the terms "social justice" and "social ministry."

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catkinZ8a

A new FOX Word of the Week?

These terms have been around for years, lol.

Get out more?

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carolb_w_fl_coastal_9b(zone 9/10)

Had to skip down since I don't have much time to read all of the above, but want to add that I think the premise of the question might be a bit inaccurate.

Using terms like 'virtue signaling' and 'SJW' as pejoratives is a tactic being used to try to marginalize a person or an issue. In the world of logical fallacies, it's known as 'ad hominem'.

Some people seem to think that it's a legit debate tactic, but it's not.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fallacies

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patriciae_gw(07)

So far as I can see according to conservatives Virtue Signaling is saying anything.

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texasranger2

patriciae---it appears you don't want to understand conservatives and think the intelligent thing to do is just lump half the population into one generic group.

If anyone wants to observe virtue signaling at its most blatant, go back and pull up the preachy, PC virtue signaling, toxic masculinity Gillette ad, obviously made in order to make Proctor and Gamble appear righteous while selling over priced razors. The swarmy ad didn't go over well and has been deservedly rated among the top most hated videos of all time.

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katrina_ellen

As far as I know it has to do with hypocrisy.

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HU9999

Using terms like 'virtue signaling' and 'SJW' as pejoratives is a tactic being used to try to marginalize a person or an issue. In the world of logical fallacies, it's known as 'ad hominem'.

Some people seem to think that it's a legit debate tactic, but it's not.

Bingo! Needed repeating.

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