From Issuepedia
Revision as of 02:22, 27 February 2016 by Woozle (talk | contribs) (tweaks; tone-policing)
Jump to navigation Jump to search


Sea-lioning is a style of personal interaction in which one person – the "sea-lion" – insists on engaging one or more other people on a subject they wish to abandon, and/or requiring explanations or defenses of their position on that subject. It is most notably characterized by an unfailing adherence to the appearance of civility while in fact being highly disruptive and obnoxious, and seizing upon even the tiniest lapses in civility by others as evidence that they are in the wrong (aka tone-policing).

It is related to the just asking questions debate methodology, and is arguably a form of rhetorical deception in that it exerts influence without justification by shifting the window of discussion (see interpretive framing).


The term "sealioning" appears to have originated with Wondermark comic #1062: The Terrible Sea Lion (2014-09-19).