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Amorality?

Hi. I was wondering if there should be a section mentioning that the Borg are amoral (as referenced by Arturis). That is, they are neither treacherous nor benevolent; they will kill only when necessary. Arturis didn't blame the Borg any more than he'd blame a "force of nature". Chakotay also tangentially referenced the amorality of the Borg when he told the story of the scorpion and the fox. He didn't think them capable of acting in a way outside "their (amoral) nature". Even an evil, say, Romulan would act cooperatively if it were in his best interest: The Borg could not. (They couldn't resist trying to assimilate the inconsequential Voyager even when they were losing billions of drones in their 8472 war, despite it being in their better interest to cooperate fully.)

The Borg wouldn't care to seek revenge, torture, or commit other "evil", immoral actions. But neither would they commit moral, "good" actions, such as helping others. They are just amoral.

I think this is not speculation because we have at least one on-screen description of them this way (there may be more that I'm forgetting.)

--Cepstrum 12:20, October 3, 2010 (UTC)

Can we add sections to this article?

The article has become quite long, and, IMO, has several natural section breaks. These include the first paragraph/intro, the Borg's quest for perfection, their quasi-religious view of particle 010 (Omega Particle), Borg Ethics and Morality, Background Notes, and External Link(s).

Can we discuss this here on the talk page instead of undoing my edits and indirectly discussing it via the "history" section of the article? Thanks! --Cepstrum 11:30, October 4, 2010 (UTC)

At least an introductory paragraph should be placed before any section header, as that is the norm for our articles (and I'm not yet convinced we need the others). Also, "external links" should be off-site links about the same topic, not some "external see also". -- Cid Highwind 15:14, October 4, 2010 (UTC)

Introduction problems

The current intro reads

The philosophy of the Borg Collective can be summarized as a determination to use any methods necessary in order to pursue a perceived state of perfection. Toward this end, the Borg, originating as wholly organic lifeforms, augmented themselves, beginning just after birth, with synthetic systems and organs, allowing them to achieve heights of physical and intellectual capacity undreamed of by most purely biological species.

I think this really needs to be reworded. For example, the phrase "beginning just after birth" is unclear. What it's supposed to mean is that the Borg place their infants in maturation chambers and begin fitting them with cybernetic implants soon after the infants' birth. The current way makes it sound that infant Borglings begin augmenting themselves, which they don't. I have a few problems with some of the other prose as well. I will try to rework it a little and post the results below when finished. If there are not any objections, I'll then make the change (after a delay). --Cepstrum 11:38, October 5, 2010 (UTC)

I would like to replace the original intro above with the following:

The principal philosophy of the Borg Collective was a drive towards achieving a state of "perfection" for themselves and, in their view, all life. The Borg attempted this chiefly by two means. Their most typical method was augmenting their organic bodies, beginning at birth, with synthetic systems and organs. This allowed them to achieve heights of physical and intellectual capacities far beyond that of most purely biological species.
Their other method was the assimilation of other lifeforms and technologies to enhance the biological and technological distinctiveness of the Collective. Assimilation could occur on a small, individual scale but often comprised the assimilation of entire species and their worlds. (VOY: "Dark Frontier", "Hope and Fear" et al.) The advantages gained by assimilating alien species and technology was the primary (and perhaps only, see VOY: "Scorpion") method by which the Borg could innovate and evolve: they would then distribute such new benefits and knowledge throughout the Collective via a network of a collective consciousness. Thus, by combining the advantages of myriad species, they sought to bring themselves and the rest of life closer to an integrated, homogeneous, perfected state. A not inconsequential side effect of this was the elimination of the individuality and autonomy of its members ("drones") and thus a fierce resistance to the Borg by all other species.
While in general the Borg would try to assimilate most or many species, they were in fact highly discriminating with respect to which species they would assimilate: those deemed unfit for enhancing the Borg Collective were either ignored or, if they posed a threat, destroyed. (VOY: "Mortal Coil")
When summarizing their worldview and its effects in a general terminology, the entity Q described the Borg as "the ultimate users," and their chosen targets for assimilation as things "they can consume." (TNG: "Q Who"); (Star Trek: First Contact)

I'll leave both versions up here in the talk page and replace the intro with the below, revised version. If anyone objects, please let me know why (and of course feel free to revert to the former version.) Even if you don't care for most or all of the changes, I do believe I was able to improve the prose in certain parts. I hope we can at least retain those changes. --Cepstrum 12:17, October 5, 2010 (UTC)

PS I was going to leave both versions up here for a while to let others weigh in, but I'll try to follow advice given to me and just "be bold" and make the change. It can always be reverted easily. And I tried to preserve the original text when possible.

Citation Issues

I'm creating this section based on what Archduk3 pointed out was a lack of citations. The above section is more for discussing the actual changes I made to prose, organization, etc., to the intro. Plus, he noted the entire article is bereft of citations. I hope I'm not violating talk page etiquette by doing so!

Here is the moved discussion:

"This allowed them to achieve heights of physical and intellectual capacities far beyond that of most purely biological species." Where does this come from? Pepe Le Pew could out hop a Borg, I would hardly call that the height of physical capacity. Also, the whole "far beyond that of most" line is also suspect, since at best the Borg are just "improving" on what was already there. As for the mental side, I definitely require a cite for that. These problems aren't just limited to that one sentence either. Every single assertion needs a cite, so generally there shouldn't be a paragraph that doesn't end with a cite. That's not to knock just this section either, the entire article is sorely under cited.

Also, citations should al be in one set of brackets, (Star Trek: First Contact; TNG: "The Best of Both Worlds", "Q Who") instead of (Star Trek: First Contact); (TNG: "The Best of Both Worlds", "Q Who"). - Archduk3 12:56, October 5, 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for the response. I completely agree. In fact, the phrase you noted was in the original, which is why I left it. I actually think it's a little long, but my goal was to improve the text, add links (I added many), and retain as much as what had been there for, AFAIK, a long time.
Perhaps you could put in "citation needed" tags in places you deem necessary. Then I could either provide the citation or remove the phrase. How's that sound? I think we could make a good collaborative effort to improve if you put the citation needed tags and I then fix them. Are you up for that? If not, I could try doing it by myself, but it would take me much longer (it's hard to edit on the iPod, and I'm not very familiar with MA's citation policy. It'd be a great learning experience for me.
Best regards,
--Cepstrum 14:32, October 5, 2010 (UTC)
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