Why have a Seeding Debate?
Finding a suitable starting point is always a difficult problem with such a large topic as the effect of the web on democracy. Taking a real-world debate about the same issue that features some of the main actors in the field seems like a good way to get things going.
This area of the map makes use of YouTube's deep linking
feature to direct users to the exact point in the video where each claim or argument is made.
A short debate like this obviously cannot do justice to the issue. That is why it has been placed in a separate element to the main debate, which will develop over time in much greater detail. The advantages with using this debate as a starting point are:
- It involves several of the main participants in the field in private industry, government and academia.Whatever the intrinsic merits of their views, the fact they held them and that they may influence their actions is important in its own right.
- Being a short debate, it can be modeled using Debategraph quite quickly and is therefore a good way to begin to get a feel for the debate.
The way I have structured the debate takes Schmidt's optimistic view as the main point of contention, with Alec Ross's conditional optimism taken as a variation. Wu's comments are shown disputing Schmidt's assumptions.