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    Default Problems with Socionics

    Here are two problems I notice with socionics:

    1. Personality preferences imply abilities. Saying that one prefers Fi over Ti does not mean that they don't have the ability to think logically. For example, I've read one description of the EII that says that they have a hard time thinking logically because they see too many possibilities. All that you can say about the EII is that they prefer to use Fi over Ti. They may not live their lives by principles and logical rules, but this isn't an IQ test; you cannot conclude from someone's personality what they are and are not skilled at. This applies to intuition and sensation as well.

    2. Rigid function ordering. Suppose someone took a test and it turned out that they prefer Ne, Fe, and Fi in that order as their top three preferences. This is an entirely plausible situation. How can we conclude that they use Fi more than Fe in real life? What really determines a person's personality: a preconceived formula or what they actually use more? Of course, you could argue that such people have misconceptions about themselves, but I'm sure there would be plenty of people in a similar situation; I doubt that they all don't know what they're talking about.

    Now, don't get me wrong. I do believe that there are certain trends in personality and that socionics captures these trends well. The problem is when we believe that they have to apply to everyone. No personality system can be that accurate.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jason_m View Post
    Here are two problems I notice with socionics:

    1. Personality preferences imply abilities. Saying that one prefers Fi over Ti does not mean that they don't have the ability to think logically. For example, I've read one description of the EII that says that they have a hard time thinking logically because they see too many possibilities. All that you can say about the EII is that they prefer to use Fi over Ti. They may not live their lives by principles and logical rules, but this isn't an IQ test; you cannot conclude from someone's personality what they are and are not skilled at. This applies to intuition and sensation as well.

    2. Rigid function ordering. Suppose someone took a test and it turned out that they prefer Ne, Fe, and Fi in that order as their top three preferences. This is an entirely plausible situation. How can we conclude that they use Fi more than Fe in real life? What really determines a person's personality: a preconceived formula or what they actually use more? Of course, you could argue that such people have misconceptions about themselves, but I'm sure there would be plenty of people in a similar situation; I doubt that they all don't know what they're talking about.

    Now, don't get me wrong. I do believe that there are certain trends in personality and that socionics captures these trends well. The problem is when we believe that they have to apply to everyone. No personality system can be that accurate.
    Socionics says none of those things. You are misinformed.

    Ne Fe... Fi in that order... makes no sense. The purpose of information metabolism is to collect information about objects and fields that exist. We put our most capable function in front to grasp as many concrete details about entities as possibel. If we use a different function, then it's because we're trying to finish collection of information regarding a given entity. But even then once you choose a function, the order holds and you must choose its complement. +Ne is always paired with -Fi, for example. (except for people with unhealthy psychology, but model A doesn't go there anyways. Look to supersocion theory for that.)

    If you want to know waht socionics is really about, research model A, then model B when you're comfortable with A.

    You know I could parse your function order from what you've written above... but that just might unsettle you.

    You're an LSI, by the way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jason_m View Post
    2. Rigid function ordering. Suppose someone took a test and it turned out that they prefer Ne, Fe, and Fi in that order as their top three preferences. This is an entirely plausible situation. How can we conclude that they use Fi more than Fe in real life? What really determines a person's personality: a preconceived formula or what they actually use more? Of course, you could argue that such people have misconceptions about themselves, but I'm sure there would be plenty of people in a similar situation; I doubt that they all don't know what they're talking about.
    you know, I've thought the same thing. If someone made a test which tested for Ne, Fe, Fi etc and gave it to people who knew nothing about socionics, would the functions pair up nicely as they are meant to in theory? Of course if they don't, then there are explanations other than the theory being wrong - for example, descriptions of the functions/aspects may not (and may never) adequately describe their essence in a way that is understood correctly by the ordinary person. When I first started reading descriptions in order to determine my valued functions, I thought "I value Si, Ti, Ni and Fi". Of course this is impossible according to the theory. These days I'm fairly certain that I don't value Ti and Ni, but sometimes I wonder whether I've just been brainwashed and shape my thoughts to fit the theory.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hellothere View Post
    you know, I've thought the same thing. If someone made a test which tested for Ne, Fe, Fi etc and gave it to people who knew nothing about socionics, would the functions pair up nicely as they are meant to in theory?
    Questions:

    - why are you assuming that a test - any test - would give the accurate functional ordering? Why would a test be the final word?
    - Do you have such a test? Has anyone been able to make a test that objectively gives the functional ordering, strength, etc?
    - for the record, one of McNew's old tests, one with over 200 questions, based on functions, often gave some such results. Does that already mean that socionics is wrong?

    Quote Originally Posted by hellothere View Post
    When I first started reading descriptions in order to determine my valued functions, I thought "I value Si, Ti, Ni and Fi". Of course this is impossible according to the theory. These days I'm fairly certain that I don't value Ti and Ni, but sometimes I wonder whether I've just been brainwashed.
    Perhaps you have been brainwashed. Perhaps you do value Si, Ti, Ni and Fi, and model A is rubbish. There is, however, yet another possibility.
    , LIE, ENTj logical subtype, 8w9 sx/sp
    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    Quote Originally Posted by hellothere View Post
    you know, I've thought the same thing. If someone made a test which tested for Ne, Fe, Fi etc and gave it to people who knew nothing about socionics, would the functions pair up nicely as they are meant to in theory? Of course if they don't, then there are explanations other than the theory being wrong - for example, descriptions of the functions/aspects may not (and may never) adequately describe their essence in a way that is understood correctly by the ordinary person. When I first started reading descriptions in order to determine my valued functions, I thought "I value Si, Ti, Ni and Fi". Of course this is impossible according to the theory. These days I'm fairly certain that I don't value Ti and Ni, but sometimes I wonder whether I've just been brainwashed and shape my thoughts to fit the theory.
    Socionics itself says point blank that different types will interpret information differently. That includes interpretation of socionics theory: some people think the theory is mostly about quadras; others think its mostly about functions valued and unvalued; others think it's about aspects. On the other hand, socionics does not capture the entire spectrum of dichotomous personality traits, either. There are many things said by socionics, but many more not said.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post
    Questions:

    - why are you assuming that a test - any test - would give the accurate functional ordering? Why would a test be the final word?
    If that assumption was implicit I did not mean it to be. Of course a test would not be the final word, but it might reveal something of use.

    - Do you have such a test? Has anyone been able to make a test that objectively gives the functional ordering, strength, etc?
    What is the point of this question?

    - for the record, one of McNew's old tests, one with over 200 questions, based on functions, often gave some such results. Does that already mean that socionics is wrong?
    No, as I said there are alternative explanations. I would be interested to see that test and the results though.

    Perhaps you have been brainwashed. Perhaps you do value Si, Ti, Ni and Fi, and model A is rubbish. There is, however, yet another possibility.
    Yes, of course there is!
    ETA: the fact that you use the singular makes me think that you have a specific explanation in mind, and I wonder what it is.

    imfd95 has just provided one possibility.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hellothere View Post
    If that assumption was implicit I did not mean it to be. Of course a test would not be the final word, but it might reveal something of use.



    What is the point of this question?



    No, as I said there are alternative explanations. I would be interested to see that test and the results though.



    Yes, of course there is!
    ETA: the fact that you use the singular makes me think that you have a specific explanation in mind, and I wonder what it is.

    imfd95 has just provided one possibility.
    I think you misunderstood him: he meant that "other possibility" as being "you're wrong". LIE +Ne is in service to the id, remember. To LIE, possibilities observed are dependent on belief.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tcaudilllg View Post
    I think you misunderstood him: he meant that "other possibility" as being "you're wrong".
    That is what I suspected after re-reading his post and the reason for my edit (though I didn't want to be presumptious and assume that was what he meant)

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    Quote Originally Posted by tcaudilllg View Post
    Socionics says none of those things. You are misinformed.
    I got the point about EIIs having problems with logic straight from Wikisocion. Here is another quote:

    "EIIs are not easily able to abstract themselves from the human dimension and apply "cold" logic."

    Quote Originally Posted by tcaudilllg View Post
    Ne Fe... Fi in that order... makes no sense. The purpose of information metabolism is to collect information about objects and fields that exist.
    What do you mean by "information metabolism"?

    Quote Originally Posted by tcaudilllg View Post
    We put our most capable function in front to grasp as many concrete details about entities as possibel. If we use a different function, then it's because we're trying to finish collection of information regarding a given entity. But even then once you choose a function, the order holds and you must choose its complement. +Ne is always paired with -Fi, for example. (except for people with unhealthy psychology, but model A doesn't go there anyways. Look to supersocion theory for that.)
    Why is it necessary that Ne and Fi be paired?

    Quote Originally Posted by tcaudilllg View Post
    You know I could parse your function order from what you've written above... but that just might unsettle you.
    Go ahead. I'd be flattered.

    Quote Originally Posted by tcaudilllg View Post
    You're an LSI, by the way.
    Really? I've always thought of myself as an intuitive type. I enjoy abstract subjects such as philosophy, psychology and mathematics, as opposed to more hands on fields. Also, I have a hard time identifying with Se; I'm not good at confronting people. I was considering EII or LII. I hope you don't assume that I'm a sensor because you think I don't "get" socionics. I just know a thing or two about the social sciences; there are many theories and trends (and I tend to like them), but rarely are there any laws.

    Jason

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    Quote Originally Posted by jason_m
    I got the point about EIIs having problems with logic straight from Wikisocion. Here is another quote:

    "EIIs are not easily able to abstract themselves from the human dimension and apply "cold" logic."
    First of all, wikisocion is not the best source for unbiased observations on individual types. Wikisocion is just a wiki thrown together by people with an interest in socionics. For a general idea of what socionics is, it's good. Anything more than that, not always the best source.

    As to the quote itself, it doesn't say that EII can't apply logic to any given system, it says that it's not easy for them. I mean lets compare EII to someone like ILE and LII with Ti in their ego block. For those two it's natural and instinctive. That's the way the world comes together for them; logically ordering the world defines their life in one way or another. EII places emphasis on ethics/feeling. It doesn't mean that they are incapable of logical reasoning, it means that they view the world from the perspective of people, feelings and interactions. Ti/Te vs. Fi/Fe doesn't have anything to do with "intelligence", it has to do with how you collect information.

    I'm not sure how accurate a way this is of putting it, but this is how I understand it (and those of you who understand it better, please feel free to correct me):

    Ti: wants to order and classify the world from a collection instinctive connections that must follow a logical pattern
    Te: wants to qualify and organize concrete and observable information in a logical manner
    Fi: wants to classify the world according to internalized ethical values that appear natural to him/her
    Fe: wants to create a harmonious emotional atmosphere based on recognized feelings in the places/people/things around them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mn0good View Post
    First of all, wikisocion is not the best source for unbiased observations on individual types. Wikisocion is just a wiki thrown together by people with an interest in socionics. For a general idea of what socionics is, it's good. Anything more than that, not always the best source.
    Though I don't think this is untrue per se, you're definitely making it sound like the wikisocion material isn't legitimate - but I think most of the primary contributors (Expat and Rick, if not myself) have demonstrated that they have a very sound understanding of socionics. I'm sure there are problematic parts here and there, so if there are any specific problems you see, I would be happy to address them.

    Why is it necessary that Ne and Fi be paired?
    The mathematical answer is: Because they are static and the opposite on rational/irrational. But I think a deeper reason is that Fi bonds are recognized and realized through Ne - e.g., spending time with another person.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ifmd95 View Post
    at risk of going off-topic...

    base > cre
    8th > ignoring
    HA > DS
    role > POLR

    (base, 8th, HA, and role are each introverted functions in introverted types.)

    and judging by his signature, hellothere identifies strongly with introversion. it's too be expected for any introvert to place a special emphasis on the introverted functions -- at least relative to the emphasis the extroverts of one's own quadra are willing to do. perhaps hellothere is confusing this emphasis for what is really meant by "valuing" a function.
    I really like how you've framed your point here. As well, it's put my own introversion identification in perspective for me and helped me recognize the link between my voracious information collection and HA. I "collect" pertinent ideas and details almost unconsciously. It's so much a part of my processing that I often don't even recognize it as such.
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    Sorry tha, wasn't trying to put down the work you guys have done there. But the profiles are written in a way that is supposed to be generalized, and not all of them are fleshed out entirely (IEE, lol). Just wanted to make it clear that the wiki is by no means the ultimate source of knowledge on socionics and that, when reading the profiles, it's important to remember that you guys aren't stating things in absolutes (e.g. not easily able != is not able to)
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    ok, all good points.

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    Quote Originally Posted by thehotelambush View Post
    Though I don't think this is untrue per se, you're definitely making it sound like the wikisocion material isn't legitimate - but I think most of the primary contributors (Expat and Rick, if not myself) have demonstrated that they have a very sound understanding of socionics. I'm sure there are problematic parts here and there, so if there are any specific problems you see, I would be happy to address them.
    Mmm hmm... I've made my own edits to the classical socionics materials on the wiki, but they apparently didn't pass the muster of the "primary" contributors.

    The rule on any wiki is that it's going to be biased, because its owner has the power and with it, the superego leverage to elevate individual users. Wikipedia has proven that cabal behavior is inevitable on wiki, and Wikisocion has pretty much affirmed the same in my view.

    (that said I do leverage it as a reference resource for supersocion theory, but you've tried to make even that difficult in so far as my views are dissimilar from yours.)

    The mathematical answer is: Because they are static and the opposite on rational/irrational. But I think a deeper reason is that Fi bonds are recognized and realized through Ne - e.g., spending time with another person.
    You mean -Ne observations of a person's potential based on -Ni time spent with them, right? The +Fi bonds are validated on basis of +Fe signals. (though I'll caution that any bond is a relationship between +Fi and +Te, not +Fi proper).

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    There is no cabal.

    Quote Originally Posted by tcaudilllg View Post
    You mean -Ne observations of a person's potential based on -Ni time spent with them, right? The +Fi bonds are validated on basis of +Fe signals. (though I'll caution that any bond is a relationship between +Fi and +Te, not +Fi proper).
    I'm not really sure what to say about this, honestly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by thehotelambush View Post
    There is no cabal.
    Oh but there is, and it appears it is made up of completely by people who don't see that there is one!

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    Quote Originally Posted by thehotelambush View Post
    The mathematical answer is: Because they are static and the opposite on rational/irrational. But I think a deeper reason is that Fi bonds are recognized and realized through Ne - e.g., spending time with another person.

    Why is it the static/dynamic dimension is kept the same while the rational/irrational dimension is complementary between the two? I'm probably showing off my ignorance here, but why not a system where both dimensions have to be kept the same, or one where static/dynamic is complementary between the two ego functions while rational/irrational is kept the same?

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    Quote Originally Posted by jason_m View Post
    Here are two problems I notice with socionics:

    Now, don't get me wrong. I do believe that there are certain trends in personality and that socionics captures these trends well. The problem is when we believe that they have to apply to everyone. No personality system can be that accurate.
    I used to feel the same way, until I began to really understand information aspcts.

    1. Personality preferences imply abilities. Saying that one prefers Fi over Ti does not mean that they don't have the ability to think logically. For example, I've read one description of the EII that says that they have a hard time thinking logically because they see too many possibilities. All that you can say about the EII is that they prefer to use Fi over Ti. They may not live their lives by principles and logical rules, but this isn't an IQ test; you cannot conclude from someone's personality what they are and are not skilled at. This applies to intuition and sensation as well.
    Testing is a horrible way to type a person.

    Also, Socionics is not a personality theory. It's about information processing.

    2. Rigid function ordering. Suppose someone took a test and it turned out that they prefer Ne, Fe, and Fi in that order as their top three preferences. This is an entirely plausible situation. How can we conclude that they use Fi more than Fe in real life? What really determines a person's personality: a preconceived formula or what they actually use more? Of course, you could argue that such people have misconceptions about themselves, but I'm sure there would be plenty of people in a similar situation; I doubt that they all don't know what they're talking about.
    It's all about the axes and (less so) temperaments.

    Ni and Se are one axis, for example.

    Ni: internal dynamics of fields
    Se: external statics of objects

    Each needs the other in order to have a balanced perspective.
    SEE-Se, 852 sx/so

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    Quote Originally Posted by ifmd95 View Post
    jung theorized that each person's ego would have functions to deal with the rational and the irrational. MBTI theorists extended that relationship to introversion/extroversion, too. in socionics, both functions are static or both are dynamic because both functions are conscious (being in the ego.) static functions are conscious in static types.
    thanks. One more question - what was the rationale for the restriction that a type must be either static or dynamic?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mn0good View Post
    As to the quote itself, it doesn't say that EII can't apply logic to any given system, it says that it's not easy for them. I mean lets compare EII to someone like ILE and LII with Ti in their ego block. For those two it's natural and instinctive. That's the way the world comes together for them; logically ordering the world defines their life in one way or another. EII places emphasis on ethics/feeling. It doesn't mean that they are incapable of logical reasoning, it means that they view the world from the perspective of people, feelings and interactions. Ti/Te vs. Fi/Fe doesn't have anything to do with "intelligence", it has to do with how you collect information.
    The problem with this is that it still implies ability. Having a hard time with something means you lack some ability in that area. In the MBTI, there are INFJs and INFPs who are good at science - a logical field. Given that, I'm sure that there are some IEEs who are good scientists and who enjoy their work as well. If that's the case, then there is no reason to believe that they have a hard time with logic.

    Jason
    Last edited by jason_m; 05-31-2008 at 08:34 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jason_m View Post
    The problem with this is that it still implies ability. Having a hard time with something means you lack some ability in that area. In the MBTI, there are INFJs and INFPs who are good at science - a logical field. Given that, I'm sure that there are some IEEs who are good scientists and who enjoy their work as well. If that's the case, then there is no reason to believe that they have a hard time with logic.
    Hmm... I have a science degree (bio-psych), and have always been fascinated by diverse aspects of scientific research. When I was young, I had a special interest in classification of the natural science in my world: had field guides for birds, trees, minerals, etc.

    But really, my interest is limited to discovery and findings. I decided not to go into research after all, because the process of collating data and defining the method was extremely tedious. In other words, the tedious "logic" part I preferred to skip. Show me the introduction, the results and discussion, I'll skim the method just to get the gist.

    My entire interest in scientific research rests in the significance of the findings; what they mean. The understanding derived by comparing and synthesizing results with past research. I'd think it's pretty apparent that I come to my interest in science via the route.
    socio: INFp - IEI
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    Quote Originally Posted by jason_m
    The problem with this is that it still implies ability. Having a hard time with something means you lack some ability in that area. In the MBTI, there are INFJs and INFPs who are good at science - a logical field. Given that, I'm sure that there are some IEEs who are good scientists and who enjoy their work as well. If that's the case, then there is no reason to believe that they have a hard time with logic.

    Jason
    It still doesn't mean that they're incapable, Jason, which is a common misconception. It just means that they will channel those functions via another source or value it less than another function. All functions work together. Functions are merely a part of the system and you don't just use one function for any given task. We would all be extremely one-dimensional people if that were the case, and extremely predictable. There would be no such thing as Fi PoLR for me, that's for sure. I would have everyone figured out

    Also, don't forget that there's a difference between logic in the sense of knowing something as true, and logic in the sense of processing information. As Diana just described, she is in a "science" field (although some argue that psych isn't exactly a science, but I digress). She likes to have the information and see how it comes together, which is less about Ti/Te and more about something like Ni or Ne. If it was about Ti/Te she would want to see the method or collect the information herself in order to determine the outcome. She would enjoy the logical process of determining an outcome.

    A really good example is debating. Types that don't value Ti won't be very fond of a casual debate because it involves the construction of a logical arguments with no real purpose or design. That doesn't mean that they can't defend their ideas, or won't, but Ti valuing types will engage in a debate just for the enjoyment of logical construction, problem solving and the fleshing out of ideas with another person.
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    IM type (that considered in classical socionics) says nothing about what career you would like. It does say something about what you will offer to the career -- how you can relate the elements of a given field to each other. Any field of study consists of the observations of entities and how their myriad energetic expressions relate.

    Let me illustrate with an example. At the Socionics Institute in Kiev, there are researchers who study the applications of type-dependent talents and specialities as requisites for any given job. This assumes that the people who work in the army share a common belief -- that the world is primarily a set of wills which clash with each other for dominance. IM type plays into that by shaping the specifics of how those wills relate to each other and even the ways in which they clash. An INFp type, for example, can probably piece together the plans of the enemy through understanding of their character. An INTj type will create new theories of conflict and the conditions which bring it about, and could probably create conditions under which emerging conflicts could be stamped out as soon as they appeared. All of this is highly speculative, but you see the main idea: we don't have a theory right now which accounts for the careers people choose, but rather one which explains what is brought to the table in the context of them.

    I will say that if we did indeed understand the correlation between career choices and the approaches to working in the context thereof, then we would have a formidable understanding of personality.

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