Project – Debatepedia.Org

I asked Brooks to send along a post I could forward to DoWire about his interesting Debatepedia.Org wiki project. I encourage you to take a look. I’d be interested in learning about other political wiki initiatives that accommodate people with diverse political views. I know about OpenPolitics.Ca and Campaigns Wikia. What else should be on the radar? Use the blog comments to add more.

Cheers,
Steven Clift
e-democracy.org
dowire.org

From: “Brooks Lindsay”
Subject: Debatepedia.org – a solution to a question at the intersection of “wikis” and politics.

Dear Steven Clift:

I’m Brooks Lindsay, the founder of Debatepedia.org, an organization of relevance and importance to your mission.

Debatepedia is the new “wiki” encyclopedia of arguments and debates. It empowers the general public to objectively frame public debates as they exist in the public sphere between the relevant players. It enables users to present all of the *unique* pro and con arguments that have been made by scholars, experts, leaders, etc. It also allows editors to present the overall positions of politicians, think-tanks, interest and activist groups, foreign leaders, etc. It does not allow users to present their own arguments and opinions.

Debatepedia helps resolve an outstanding question: how can “wiki” technology be successfully applied to politics, which is divisive by nature, when “wikis” are a medium of “consensus”. The important insight and bridge is that a public debate and its public arguments can be treated as documentable facts, and that the general public can arrive at a consensus in the framing of these facts.

Under these strict rules, the public can successfully document a debate as if it were an encyclopedic entry, and present all of the information necessary for any individual (citizen or leader) to develop a calculated and rational position. This has large social implications.

Brooks Lindsay, Founder and CEO of Debatepedia.org.
bhlindsay@gmail.com 206 406 7558

3 Comments to “Project – Debatepedia.Org”

  1. Identity Unknown Says:

    links from Technorati *** Democracies Online Newswire – http://DoWire.Org ***To access links, see Steven Clift’s blog: http://dowire.org/notes/?p=334 Post: Project – Debatepedia.Org I asked Brooks to send along a post I could forward to DoWire about his interesting Debatepedia.Org wiki project. I encourage you to take a look. I’d be interested in learning about other political wiki initiatives

  2. Ben Slade Says:

    The wiki format may need some fine tuning for this
    purpose. Specifically, adding functionality to let people submit
    choices for debates other than simple yes/no, and having a method of
    consensus building to select the most interesting choices . There are
    professional meeting leaders who have this down to a science (for live
    meetings)

  3. Greg Schnippel Says:

    I’ve been working on this same kind of idea at spacedebate.org as part of a larger project to create an open source “debate engine”. I’m trying to combine the best features of wiki software with the structure and organization inherently needed for good policy debate. The key I think is to focus on developing the best individual arguments rather than consensus positions and let users remix them into their own positions. The system then becomes a database of isolated arguments, supported by citations, evidence, and discussion (ex. http://www.spacedebate.org/arguments). Still a work in progess but I’m excited by all of these different projects (like campaigns.wikia.com, congresspedia, etc) that are trying to accomplish the same goal.


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