... to sober-arguments.net. This web application aims to facilitate constructive discussions. Each discussion consists of so called bricks. The basic brick for every discussion is a Thesis-Brick. A response to a thesis must have one of the following types:
- Improvement Suggestion
Sober was developed out of the experience that discussions via email, social media, comment areas or classical forums in many cases are frustrating. Some observed reasons:
- The lack of reference and unsupported claims.
- The lack of focus (vulnerability to so called red herrings).
- Important arguments are hidden in volumes of less important text.
- The lack of overview (which argument relates to which).
- Formation or manifestation of rival camps.
Sober was designed to avoid these problems as much as possible, while still being easy to use. The intended audience are groups of people who in principle are willing to collaborate and making decisions based on reasonable arguments. Main features are:
- Discussions are strongly formalized and split up into atomic contributions, so called bricks (see details above)
- The quality of each brick can be rated.
- Theses can evoke more or less agreement.
- Arguments can have more or less cogency (persuasive power).
- Other bricks can have more or less relevance.
- Users are enabled and encouraged to gradually improve bricks: find better references, use clearer formulation, etc.
- Authorship of bricks is not shown. This is to emphasize content over social interdependencies.
- Sober is free software and aims to be easily deployable on self hosted infrastructure.
Main use cases are:
- Loose interchange of arguments on a possibly controversial topic.
- Support running processes of formation of opinion and collective decision-making within groups.
- Document such processes (which might have taken place on other media or offline) for later reference.
You have to be logged in to fully use this webservice. Then you can
- create a Thesis,
- create Bricks (Pro/Contra-Arguments, Improvement Suggestions, etc.),
- edit your Bricks and
- vote on Bricks.
If you want to try it out: register or login now. Alternatively, go to thesis list.