Does MO have a stand on neurodiversity, if even informal? If not, should it have a stand? And practically speaking, how might it have a stand that could improve the community as a whole?

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    $\begingroup$ Does MO have "a stand" on anything? It provides a collection of questions and answers, a question could be "how to address the needs of neurodiverse students of mathematics", and an answer could be found, for example, here. $\endgroup$ Jan 26, 2020 at 13:12
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    $\begingroup$ No, no stand. What do you have in mind? Most of the time we have no way of knowing who is "neurotypical" and who is not, and pretty much the only guideline in how we treat each another personally comes down to some variation of "be nice". $\endgroup$
    – Todd Trimble Mod
    Jan 26, 2020 at 13:37
  • $\begingroup$ Feel free to delete my account if you don't like my question. I figured out what the collective answer is. If you think you are better than, stand over and stand apart from the causes of out time the "pronoun" war indicates you aren't. $\endgroup$
    – user37691
    Jan 26, 2020 at 16:15
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    $\begingroup$ Daniel, with your last comment, I have no idea what you are talking about. Delete account? Pronoun war? Better than? Speaking as a parent with a neurodiverse child, I think you are jumping to conclusions (I put "neurotypical" in quotes because I'm not sure what that term even means, especially for mathematicians.) $\endgroup$
    – Todd Trimble Mod
    Jan 26, 2020 at 17:20
  • $\begingroup$ Sorry, the down votes are all I need to see. Best wishes to folks. $\endgroup$
    – user37691
    Jan 26, 2020 at 17:28
  • $\begingroup$ I have deleted my profile. $\endgroup$
    – user37691
    Jan 26, 2020 at 23:53
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    $\begingroup$ @DanielGeisler I just looked at your comments below Gerhard's answer, particularly the second. If there are specific features that you want that have to do with web accessibility issues for those on the autistic spectrum, then you should make that clear. But I wish, instead of getting upset, you would engage. I had asked: what do you have in mind? I'm not picking up on what it is you want with your question. $\endgroup$
    – Todd Trimble Mod
    Jan 27, 2020 at 3:15
  • $\begingroup$ I have voted to close this question. Thank you to the people who reached out to me. I don't belong here. I wish I was capable of being a gentleman, but I'm not. My issues with MO and the math profession are too deep to fix. I just wanted to know if even a conversation was possible without unleashing a down vote hell. I recommend autistic people not use MO or go into math. $\endgroup$
    – user37691
    Jan 27, 2020 at 5:44
  • $\begingroup$ I think that how ended this post was sad, and from this thought (I didn't know/met to the OP) with all respect I would like to add a message with the intention that if the OP reads it in the future, that this person reconsider being a user of this site MathOverflow again. If my comment isn't suitable in this thread of comments, feel free to remove it. $\endgroup$
    – user142929
    Mar 12, 2020 at 21:32

1 Answer 1


As mentioned, the forum itself does not have a stand, as it is a database. Also, on many issues, the community is quite divided. On the basic issue of neurodiversity, I suspect many members have not considered it in the context of MathOverflow.

On the issue of behaviour, matters are quite different. While "be nice" covers some ground, more subtle issues are at work. In particular, the behaviour of many high reputation users (JDH, David Speyer, J. O'Rourke, T. Tao, R. Bryant, to name a few) are examples to be modeled, and the balance between personal expression and quality content for the forum should always be considered. If you weight heavily toward the former, the community will not support you. As a rule of thumb, pretend you are at a seminar with the whole world watching.

(For personal reasons, I do not hold myself to the same standard as the esteemed list above. I am always conscious of the public nature of my contributions though, and try to provide a certain kind of nonprofessional quality, as I want to make some mathematics more accessible.)

It appears to me that you are upset. I don't know that I can offer any help, but you may find my email address on my user page. Write to me or to the moderators if you have an issue behind the one in this post that you believe merits discussion.

Gerhard "We're Here To Help Many" Paseman, 2020.01.26.

  • $\begingroup$ Thank you for your reply. I purposely asked my question in a neutral manner. I certainly would have understood if the reply had been "how could MO support neurodiversity when we don't know the particulars of our members." So I take the seven down votes and the move to close this question a strong support against neurodiversity. $\endgroup$
    – user37691
    Jan 26, 2020 at 20:37
  • $\begingroup$ boia.org/blog/how-web-accessibility-affects-people-with-autism $\endgroup$
    – user37691
    Jan 26, 2020 at 20:58
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    $\begingroup$ You are in charge of your own interpretation. Mine is that the question is not worded well enough to admit a useful answer, that people object more to the generality than to the issue. In short, this is not a good question for MathOverflow Meta. Gerhard "Might Be Good Somewhere Else" Paseman, 2020.01.26. $\endgroup$ Jan 26, 2020 at 20:58