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    • CommentAuthorSJR
    • CommentTimeJul 15th 2011
    I am growing weary of Gerhard Passman's offerings, such as this which I just flagged as offensive. It is important that comments on this site be serious and thoughtful. I there is anything that the moderators can do, I would be greatly relieved.
    • CommentAuthorMariano
    • CommentTimeJul 15th 2011

    I guess the comments went away now...


    There is currently no record of these comments, but we might be able to dig them up. If you have serious concerns about a particular user's behavior (not necessarily Gerhard), please contact the moderators directly at (rather than using meta).

    • CommentAuthorgrp
    • CommentTimeJul 16th 2011
    I am surprised at the combination (SJR would flag a comment as offensive) and (I have no idea which comment or why).

    To SJR: If it is the signature, I am willing to discuss it by email with you or you can contact the moderators who may be able to give you a different kind of satisfaction. Otherwise, I prefer to withhold an apology regarding an offensive comment until I understand what is wrong. I will offer (to the best of my memory) that my intent was not to offend regarding your post.

    While I am here, I note something in your argument that puzzles me, and prompted me to comment (possibly with insufficient thought or gravity). In one paragraph you have (an expression like) px -qy =t and the next you have px + qy = t. Is that an accidental sign change, or is there more going on in the argument that warrant the plus? The plus seemed incongruous to me given the suggestion of finding a new pair (x,y) by adding positive quantities to both.

    If you prefer to address this in the question rather than on meta, or by email, please do so.

    Gerhard "Email Me About System Design" Paseman, 2011.07.16

    SKR- if you are going to flag a comment as offensive and complain about it on meta, copy it here. Other wise, we may be left it our current situation of not knowing what you are talking about; the only comment of Gerhard on your answer looks perfectly reasonable, so I'm assuming one is gone.

    • CommentAuthorSJR
    • CommentTimeJul 16th 2011
    The comment is still there: (at the bottom).

    Here is a copy

    I would change one paragraph to put a minus in where you have a plus, and add at the end of the paragraph for clarity that you can then have a coprime solution (x, y) with 0<x<2q, as well as referencing (0,2q) in the following paragraph. The rest looks blessworthy to me. Gerhard "Email Me About System Design" Paseman

    Unfortunately, the answer it refers to was subsequently edited.

    My objection is that this is frivolous.... talking for the sake of talking. To me this is not a small matter. The seriousness and honesty with which people exchange ideas on this site is remarkable, and I worry about anything that might diminish this.
    • CommentAuthorgrp
    • CommentTimeJul 16th 2011
    To: SJR

    In my opinion, your argument could stand improvement. Even with the edits, I think there is a typo (to wit in the expression px_0 + qy_o = t), and could benefit from including the observation that a coprime solution can be found with x in (0,2q) in the same paragraph that you develop that solution. If I have misunderstood, (and the plus was intended) then I apologize for my misunderstanding. If your prefer no suggestions of correction or improvement from me, you may tell me so, but I suggest you not be so quick to label them as offensive or inappropriate. The remark containing blessworthy was further my opinion that Gerry Myerson would give it his blessing, if you want to know my intent behind it.

    I spend time on MathOverflow to try to assist others; I don't need to see myself type. I am sorry that you do not see my comment as an attempt at assisting and as frivolous. I also warn you: there is levity and whimsy elsewhere on this forum. Do not venture far, or you may encounter more of it, and not solely from yours truly.

    Gerhard "Has Been Called Seriously Funny" Paseman, 2011.07.16

    What Ben said. The comment looks reasonable to me too.

    If someone points out a mathematical mistake to an author, even a small one, it is normal practice for the author to politely thank that someone for noticing and helping to perfect what s/he has written. And, most people don't think of that as any big deal or anything to get huffy about. I think, "oops, you're right -- thanks" would be an appropriate response.

    My opinion: frivolous \ne offensive.
    I guess I'm still not following the complaint. He politely pointed out a small error, and that's offensive?
    • CommentAuthorSJR
    • CommentTimeJul 17th 2011
    The responses to this post clearly indicate that no one other than myself has a problem with this or similar comments by Mr. Passman. It would be foolish of me to pursue the matter any further.