Debatepedia, a wiki encyclopedia for public debate

debatepediaWe have just learned about Debatepedia, a new “wiki” encyclopedia of arguments and debates.

Founded in the summer of 2006, the platform 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.

The main question driving the idea of Debatepedia during its formative period was: how could “open-source” technology be applied to debate and analysis. Debatepedia now wants to answer a more ambitious question: how can “wiki” technology be successfully applied to politics.

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.

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