Contents page 1 — the dispute goes! Page 2 — A “driver’s license for the Internet” On a page

Although I have been engaged for longer with Online communities, read I’m at a loss: How do we keep the digital political discourse and democracy? The net is, I think, is one of the few places where this can even be a conversation of our society. It represents the diversity of the most and gives everyone a voice.

24 years Ago, I founded my first Online Forum today, I am editor-in-chief of Zeit ONLINE, where one of the biggest debates in communities in Germany, their homeland. Recently, we organised for the second Time, “Germany speaks”, and more than 20,000 people in political conversations. And yet: I don’t know how it is with the network debate.

Even the Generation that is online grew up, pulls back. The most recent occasion thinking about it, was for me the debate Sawsan Chebli. Recently, I should comment on in the TIME the fact that of all the belligerent Secretary of state of the state of Berlin to their Facebook, has disabled access. Her hate messages and death threats had become too much.

The perplexity is the mother of many things. At the end of my comment there was, therefore, instead of an answer a call: “Maybe it’s time to invent something New. How should we arrange to meet in the future on the net for a good argument? Do you have an idea? Write to me: jochen.wegner@zeit.de”

The TIME in print and I in the holiday. Back, I found my enthusiasm almost 100 detailed responses in the mailbox. Here’s a Best-of. (The passages are shortened and edited. In order to preserve privacy, only first names.)

1. A Good Online Debate? A contradiction in itself!

Of readers of the printed TIME, I had expected to see, the Internet is also critical. Dozens of emails confirmed my idea.

“It’s all for nothing, our brains are shaped for thousands of years on the direct exchange. Argue and us to look in your eyes brings us more.” Jürgen, 81, an entrepreneur in his retirement, Windhagen

It’s only the Older, also Younger to avoid the digital exchange:

“In my environment I watch for a long time that social media will play a vanishingly small role in the Smartphone belongs to the General inventory. The are usually very conscious decisions.” Marie, 21, a theology-student

“in my circle Of friends always use less social networks active, and Facebook is all as dead on Twitter only to journalists and politicians, Instagram is the only one still reasonably vibrant network.” Jurek, 24

This article dates back to the TIME no 47/2018. Here you can read the entire issue. 2. If digital, then please don’t be anonymous!

especially the possibility to stay undetected harms in the opinion of many a good discussion. Each of the Second requested that the participants should clearly identify. Like this student, the teacher took my Text in the classroom (sorry, love the class):

“If you could suddenly hide no more behind a simple user name and a stolen image from the Internet, would be the discussions in class and also businesslike? What would happen if we would have to live for our vision, setting, and our opinion publicly stand up?” Michelle, 17

“I would sign up immediately for a platform where to understand who is behind the submitted message.” Gabriele, Vienna

Sigrid holds pseudonyms for a possible solution:

“For many users, an Alias is a good idea. I am extremely reluctantly into the limelight. But the true identity of a sender should be, if necessary, to find. We can’t cover on the road to recognition – why should the be allowed?” Sigrid

3. What is a good platform for discussion needs

I’m not so optimistic: Since the early days of digital communities, many of which are identifiable and in real life, often charming, in the disembodied digital world and their destructive sides. Marc describes it like this:

“Therefore, something Essential, which illustrates the Political in the concept: in the absence of a political discourse in the network, the Polis, i.e., a Form of living together, of the people, you know, to build relationships.” Marc, 51, a Buddhist priest, Düsseldorf, Germany

A good digital replacement needs. Nathalie and Robin have formulated “an area of debate at the Breakfast table,” a catalogue of boundary conditions. Excerpts:

“Free access to any nThe data may not, for further computer-assisted analyses of foreign be used for specific filtering of information in a clear, democratic discussion as a rule, reaction to inappropriate messages”
Nathalie and Robin

Lorenz sent a similar list, added about:

“Verification of the alleged facts by the policy and science a Moderator, monitors, external qualification, a summary is not created

Strangely enough, something even exists in the political party I belong to. I think this internal silence is the biggest Problem in front of all of the formerly major parties.” Lorenz, Trier