Impact analysis and fact checking forum

Hi Discourse community,

I’m glad, that I found Discourse app. Probably is focused on relatively small communities. I don’t know, how big are your ambitions. Let me offer you an idea for another type of forum. We are living in world of social networks. These tools are bringing content primarily based on our historical ratings of other posts. These ratings are mostly using emoticons, i.e. emotions. It was designed mainly for fun. Thanks to that, algorithms bring you the most emotional content. Every day I’m surprised how many people changes their decisions in real live by content of social networks. But! If you want to decide rational, you need primary another informations then other user emotions. At first you need relevant alternatives. And for every possible variant you also need its advantage and disadvantage. And questions and answers for this variant. Imagine impact analysis and fact checking forum with solid structure of topics. Topics (problems to solve) are divided into concrete solutions and every solution into subtopics advantages / disadvantages / questions and answers. On topic dashboards you need not number of posts in subtopics. You need headlines of 2-3 best rated posts and statistics of its ratings. Just by this you can infer relevancy of each variant. How could users rate posts? By another point of view than just emotions. This could be:

  • Author is competent for this statement.
  • Post is understandable.
  • I verified facts in this post.
  • Statement uses some of manipulation technics or argumentative faults (fallacy).
  • Post is adequate to topic.

Statistic of toxic words could be also included into rating. Main problem for this forum is algorithm for computing post rating based on user and automated rating statistics. On post page could be also accessible link for page, there will be published those statistics and mechanism for summary rating. The discussion would therefore become clearer with a larger number of rating users. In Q&A section common users could also rate questions by mark “I’m also interested in this question”, proposers could answer only the highest rated questions and answers you can rate by points of views above. An ordinary user could find rough orientation in the problem just from summary dashboard with relevant variants of solutions. Detailed analysis could find by few clicks. I expect that with this tool it would be possible to quickly find comments that are concise, clear, to the point of topic and confirmed by more users. Common user will not read all posts in forum. Chronological view on posts will be not default.

I don’t know what the authors’ ambitions are. It is undoubtedly a challenging task that will require a lot of resources. The system would continue to develop further – integration with verified identity systems, automated translations, big organization contracts with custom rating mechanism. As an example of a big organization forum could be Futureu project. Now is accessible only in archive. I expect there is perspective of those types of forums with massive usage.

I think impact analysis and fact checking forum could lead to rational decisions and could be alternative for emotion-based internet apps. The proposed application should have the ambition to publish contradictory statements in one place, work with them rationally and clearly display the results. The application would dampen passions, keep to the point of topics, sort through information overload and increase the sense of belonging to the organization. Thank you for any comment on this idea.