Open Thread: Forums

On the sidebar of this site, I have listings of atheist blogs and podcasts that I like and recommend. The one thing I don’t have a good list of, however, is atheist web forums. I used to post on IIDB, but no longer, and I haven’t been a regular on any bulletin boards in a long time, so I don’t know what’s out there these days.

So, I’m posting this thread to ask for recommendations. Do you know of an atheist forum that you’d encourage everyone else to go visit? Post a URL and tell us why you like it. I’ll check them out and link to the most interesting ones.

About Adam Lee

Adam Lee is an atheist writer and speaker living in New York City. His new novel, Broken Ring, is available in paperback and e-book. Read his full bio, or follow him on Twitter.

  • Ubi Dubium

    I like the forums at FriendlyAtheist: http://forum.friendlyatheist.com/index.php. Often good discussion there.

    And not really an atheist forum per se, but the forum at the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster has a wonderful regular crew of silly pirates, good discussion on just about any topic, and lots of fun and games. http://www.venganza.org/forum/index.php

  • lpetrich

    If I may be forgiven a plug for a board I’m an admin at, here is Secular Café. It’s a third-generation IIDB refugee board, and it’s got some IIDB veterans in it, including myself. It’s usually calm and well-managed and friendly, but I’m not much of a “people person”.

    IIDB itself continues as the FRDB. It’s become more relaxed and informal since when the Internet Infidels Board of Directors divested it.

    If Richard Dawkins refugee boards are more to your taste, here are some: rationalia.com and rationalskepticism.org The first one is more relaxed, while the second one continues in the style of the former Richard Dawkins Forum.

  • JulietEcho

    Aww, thanks Ubi Dubium. I’m the admin on the Friendly Atheist forums (already linked above), and so I’m biased here, but we’ve been around since spring of 2008 and have steadily attracted a small but loyal group of regulars. There are some threads by atheists, for atheists, but there are also several theists (ranging from the Karen Armstrong/Bishop Spong fans to fundamentalist Baptists) who ask and answer questions.

    Any trolls who come by clearly just looking to convert/preach get thrown into a special section called “Convert Me!” and are restricted from posting elsewhere. So people are free to feed the trolls if that’s their sort of thing, or to ignore that small corner of the forums and not have to read any sermons.

  • Eric

    Atheistnetwork.com

  • keddaw

    http://libertarianatheist.com/ gives a different perspective on most issues and offers some rational discussions of issues that most people would ignore because the tea party nuts are the ones screaming about them. The atheist part tends to keep the tea party people out.

  • Johan

    I like rationalskepticism.org because it isn’t just focused on atheism as such but on, eh, rational skepticism. I like that, because atheism is (or should be) just a conclusion, not a basic belief. In fact, atheist as a noun shouldn’t even exist.

  • Thumpalumpacus

    I help to moderate at Thinking Aloud Forum, where we have a variegated setup that allows for both serious discussion and light-hearted fun.

  • http://generalnotions.talkislam.info Ergo Ratio

    There’s http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/ if you want to take easy shots at fundies. There’s also http://www.atheistthinktank.net/thinktank/index.php if you want to team up on them.

  • http://www.WorldOfPrime.com Yahzi

    I second the Secular Cafe.

  • http://corvustristis.wordpress.com Corvus

    If you knit, the Atheists & Agnostics Crafters group on the knitting site Ravelry.com is pretty awesome. Very small, but good people.

  • http://holocenehominoid.blogspot.com Stephen Moore

    Atheist Nexus has a forum, as well as a groups and blogs. Lots of discussion to be had on a wide variety of topics, not just atheism or religion.

  • Paul

    I like that, because atheism is (or should be) just a conclusion, not a basic belief. In fact, atheist as a noun shouldn’t even exist.

    Vegetarianism should be a conclusion, not a basic belief. Therefore vegetarian shouldn’t be a noun? Or more on the nose, many Christians will claim that reason led them to conclude Christianity is the True Religion(ignoring for the moment that it takes large portions of special pleading and confirmation bias, it is framed as a conclusion and not a basic belief). Should “Christian” lose noun status? I must be missing something here. Perhaps the two statements aren’t meant to be connected.

    I will second the suggestion for Rational Skepticism, though.

  • http://www.daylightatheism.org Ebonmuse

    Well, there are a lot of different suggestions here, but not much unanimity! It seems there’s an atheist diaspora on the web…

    I saw three forums whose mention was seconded: Friendly Atheist, Secular Cafe, and Rational Skepticism. They all sound good, so I’ll have to check them out this weekend and see for myself. Anyone else want to cast a vote for one of the forums already mentioned in this thread (or bring up a new one that hasn’t been suggested yet)?

  • Ishryal

    I sometimes visit Evolution Vs Creationism, but not a big forum user myself anymore…

    http://www.evcforum.net/cgi-bin/dBoard.cgi

    Very informative.

  • TEP

    I go to http://freethought-fellowship.org/forums/index.php , which focusses on freethought in general rather than atheism specifically (though there is plenty of atheism discussion). It’s rather small, but fairly free of trollish disruption.

  • http://www.wearesmrt.com/bb/viewforum.php?f=11 BathTub

    The WeAreSMRT forums, a spin off of the Raytractors, so we kind of specialize in taking the piss out of Ray Comfort.
    http://www.wearesmrt.com/bb/viewforum.php?f=11

    But we like any sort of Fundy Fun.

    http://www.wearesmrt.com/bb/index.php

  • lpetrich

    Here are the major families of atheist/freethought forums I’m familiar with:
    IIDB family tree
    Richard Dawkins Forums family tree

    There may be some families I’m not familiar with, but there seem to be a lot of isolated ones without clear family connections.

  • http://www.daylightatheism.org Ebonmuse

    Very cool, lpetrich! Thanks for taking the time to put those together.

  • http://www.ciphergoth.org Paul Crowley

    About rationality rather than atheism specifically, but

    http://lesswrong.com/

    “a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality”