I would posit that in a community where acceptance of ideas is driven by community and there is an underlying belief or assumption (however incorrect) that is accepted by most of the community it is much harder to negate that underlying and incorrect belief. That is not a problem about which a whole lot can be done other than to better educate said community.
The crux of the "bias" problem mostly exists in the fact that if a questioner or commenter makes a naive statement that includes an assumption based on myth, it is generally considered off-topic to address the underlying - although incorrect assumption with anything more than a passing statement accompanied by other points regarding the question that the community can get on board with.
"Educating" about a topic that is only related but does not directly answer the original question is considered "soap boxing", "chatty" or "off-topic" even if it is to alleviate a concern mentioned in the question. How is a myth to be corrected or a bias rooted out if the policy continues to stand that most of these corrective kinds of comments are not acceptable?
I understand the policy under most circumstances as it provides a protection against on going argument where both parties go back and forth not really getting to the heart of the matter. However, what is one to do about such a problem because the policies in place don't really open up much opportunity to address the incorrect assumption?
The policies in place do allow a knowledgeable person to down-vote an inaccurate answer or an answer that contains such a bias with edits and comments briefly explaining the edit, but there is no real way to handle the other two types of pieces of information. Such statements do demonstrate the existence of the bias and compound the incorrect assumption (yes, even questions can contain information). Additionally, answers that demonstrate the answerer holds the mythological assumption are not held to the same standard as those that go against the grain of the community, therefore votes, flags and others can actually substantiate the incorrect information (more rare, but it has happned - see below for link).
Refusing to acknowledge comments and questions themselves as a part of the discussion and information that could indicate a bias is also a convenient way of ignoring its existence.
As I said before, overall I really like the way this community is structured. Despite a statement to the contrary I have not minded edits to my own work on most occasions and have made changes based on suggestions made through comments to improve my answers or make them better suited to the community (including situations regarding home schooling).
I feel that overall, this is a great resource.
I simply feel if you want to welcome more HS community in, it is important to ask, "Is there a way to address this bias (while still working in the system) that remains "on topic" and not "chatty" when comments, answers or questions include the underlying myth that socialization is a natural process of schooling and not of home schooling".
In a community driven environment such as this, should biases like this be looked for before inviting a group of people in who are likely to receive the negatives of the bias?
I wish I could feel welcomed in this community but when I find a recurring theme that is for lack of a better word - tiresome - to most of us in the HS community and can't even call attention to the inaccuracy of it without "editorializing" from a moderator no less, I just can't figure out how I - or others like me are supposed to feel welcome here, ask our questions without having to write an essay that includes links and citations as a preemtive measure or just expect to tolerate the same old, tiresome "concern" about socialization.
If I thought this forum was completely horrible, I wouldn't have bothered to bring it up and would have just moved on, but I'd like to use SE AND not feel like I can't ask questions or respond to questions when I see that I have information that could be useful to the community.
I finally had the chance to go through and find more of the examples and figure out how to link them - I do homeschool (yes, including in July) as well as nanny and keep up on a blog though I admit figuring this out sooner (despite the amount of time required as the comments were not necessarily easy for me to re-discover) would have been helpful.
Here is an example that got down votes because it didn't have any citations. Even after adding citations, community members +1'd the comment that it was unfounded AND it got another down vote (the comment had 2 or 3 +1's and now has 5 and the question had two downvotes, I upvoted it which would mean it was only at -1 and it is now again at -2). https://parenting.stackexchange.com/a/1381/2876
Here is an example of a "snarky?" comment: "Here's a list. It seems our country is surprisingly (or is it unsurprising?) lax on regulations for home schooling education.uslegal.com/homeschooling/homeschooling-laws-by-state – DA01". This is not particularly offensive and is really just "snarky" causing me to have rolled my eyes - I even agree somewhat that in certain states regulations are pretty much nil. but it still includes unnecessary commentary that is snarky and negative. This one is found on my question regarding finding a reference for requirements in different states. Due to some sort of bug or slip, I have not been able to flag it and now the computer even says I +1'd it. I must have slipped as I clicked my mouse. In reality, it DOES contain a link that is useful, I'd really just rather see it edited (comments can't be edited though).
Here is an example of an ANSWER that has been upvoted despite its lack of citations to support the indicated and underlying claim that our schools actually socialize kids https://parenting.stackexchange.com/a/5394/2876. The answer suggests schools do socialize kids without a need for parent supplementation, while in homeschool socialization would need to be "supplemented" through its context even though it does not necessarily say this directly.
YES there are also some examples of accepted statements but not if you go so far as to dare to say home schoolers are typically BETTER socialized. Also, two/three of these examples are answers given by either former or current moderators which automatically (and perhaps, justifiably) gives them more credibility. I pointed out Hedge Mage's spectacular answer to this problem myself in another location (link in Beofett's answer). But one great example does not negate Many other instances, it simply moderates them. It does indicate that some one else out there is tired of this myth and dealing with it. It indicates there are others out there noticing the existence of the "myth" as considered believable by members of this community and shows one example of "education" to the contrary that was made successfully. I am very glad for this example, but is that ONE example and an old one no less. The example by a newer member I found, is no where near the top of the list of upvoted answers.
In the third example, (the one by Beofett which I believe he also includes a link to in his answer) the answer actually says nothing in response to the assumption that home schooling results in a greater likelihood of a child not getting enough socialization that can be directly read from the answer. The answer only includes the link, so unless a person looked at the link itself, one would never know which way the information goes. There were many OTHER aspects to the answer deserving of upvotes so I am skeptical that the upvotes were given in favor of this one link. This is fine and not problematic or a sign of a problem by itself, but I do not really see this as a good example to contradict the existence of a community bias.
To clarify the statement that Beofett was exhibiting a bias (I made in another location) for Beofett's benefit, I believe his bias is in not being able to see a flaw in the system or the double standard that one side of the argument requires citation while the other is not asked for the same - he simply can't see the flaw because he loves SE too much to see it and is not experienced in having to listen to the results of this myth on what is probably a weekly basis in the real world. This lack of experience makes it really easy for him to overlook the problem. To back up my point that the double standard exists, I will again point to this example which was mistaken as a misquote in earlier commentary.
Most often, the statements are simply made of naivete and rather than down voting them, it actually seems kinder to find a way to educate and just not vote to me. In looking into finding the most egregious examples, I have discovered that the worst have all been made by ONE person alone, but there is only one example of those statements having been removed, edited or flagged by anyone other than myself in my knowledge. One example I cited, has even received an up-vote.
In the one instance where the comments were removed, the stated reason was not that they were inappropriate but that the question itself was too broad and EVERYTHING was removed. To clarify, I agreed the question should have been removed, as it was too broad and I STILL agree it should have been removed (even though it has been indicated by Beofett that I have said otherwise). I did attempt to indicate in comparing numbers of questions and the ratio of those that have been asked successfully to those that have been closed shows that the sheer lack of questions regarding home schooling and the lack of response (or the ill-informed responses) they get would certainly indicate a lower number of responders with the expertise to answer. That does not indicate bias either, but certainly a mismatch and makes me wonder if anything can be done to draw more of us in. It seems that a good way to do that is to begin the process of educating the community so they don't exhibit the same tiresome bias HS families encounter in the broader world anyway. If some one is here to ask a question about HS and they have to spend a bunch of time re-educating, the sit4e becomes a lot less efficient to use and you are likely to lose those members quickly.