What is Debatewise and why was it created?
Debatewise was created for people who like making informed decisions. If this is you, you probably wont trust one source of information and will try to get a rounded view – which these days often means going to forums and blogs. The problem is, making sense of different opinions is time-consuming and imprecise.
What’s needed is a place where the best possible arguments for one side are listed next to the best possible arguments against. These arguments aren’t created by one person, but by like-minded individuals collaborating to form the strongest case. This allows people both to easily compare the pros and cons and also to come to a decision safe in the knowledge they have the best information to hand.
We want to be the first place to think of when you want to make up your mind. We hope you’ll come to Debatewise, get both sides and go away better informed. We also hope you’ll share your knowledge with others to better inform them.
You’ll need to persuade me more before I’ll donate my time and knowledge
If you are a campaigner of any kind, if you are looking to persuade others to your way of thinking, if you are looking to inform others, correct misconceptions or right wrongs Debatewise offers five unique benefits:
- The opportunity to spread your message to a wider audience, most of whom will be undecided
- The opportunity to gain more supporters, donations or paying members
- The opportunity to use collective intelligence to hone and refine your arguments
- The opportunity for you to get invaluable feedback as to what people think of your arguments, to find out the arguments which work and which don’t, the points people think are most important and how opinions change over time or when different arguments are presented
- The opportunity to better know your opponents’ arguments and what fears or prejudices you need to counter
What’s your vision, what are you trying to make better?
Fundamentally, it’s to further debate. We believe neutrality to be somewhat of an unattainable goal and that all of us have bias; whether we be individuals, journalists or big media and whether this bias be explicit or unacknowledged.
The solution is not to seek neutrality but to encourage people to argue in the most partisan, impassioned and polemic ways. When you’ve got both sides doing this and when the observer can see how the claims made by one side are answered by the other, then you give people the information they need to make up their mind.
This is best achieved through debate. However, only so many people want to go to a real-world debate or can fit into the meeting room. Moreover, only so many people have the time or the confidence to speak up when there. Online debates compliment real-world debates nicely. People can get involved at a time and place to suit and there are no limits to the number who can watch or participate. Plus the results of the debate exist in a semi-permanent state and can be read by anyone interested whenever they want.
By furthering debate, by providing debaters and the audience of a debate with what they need, we can help with a number of elements crucial to a functioning society. These include giving people the information they need to make an informed decision, helping decision-makers consult with those their decisions affect and helping debaters articulate their position and refine their arguments.
There are many community benefits Debatewise could bring. The collaboration aspect allows people to meet others with similar interests. By putting a strong case they can recruit others to their cause and decide upon the action they should take. Indecision is the mother of inaction and it is entirely reasonable to expect that if we help people make up their mind the site will encourage more people to get involved in creating the change they want to see.