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Project ideas

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E-Democracy.Org sees Issues Forums as the necessary, lower cost "egg" and greater democracy and community engagement online as the "chicken."

Below are a number of possible chickens. In the future, we plan to submit the best ideas to potential funders as we did with the Knight News Challenge.


Block Heads - E-Democracy.Org's secure open source platform for neighbor to neighbor communication

Voter Mesh - E-Democracy.Org's open source voter guide network and online candidate debate platform

Democracy Pulse: E-Democracy.Org's comprehensive package for upgrading local democracy through information and interactivity

Democaster: E-Democracy.Org's open source platform for live and on-demand webcasting/podcasting of public meetings and community events

Specify. Then Build. - E-Democracy.Org's proposal to leverage competitive spirit to develop innovative citizen media tools

Community Survey

Original Conversation. Original News. - E-Democracy.Org's proposal to reverse the premise of citizen media by spinning news out of online conversation

Local Mashup Tool - E-Democracy.Org's proposal for a nifty easy to use open source content management system modules for aggregating and displaying user-generated content from multiple popular sites

Who Cares - Local Solutions Social Network - E-Democracy.Org's proposal for a revolution in online news and citizen media that moves us from "reader" comments to real "citizen" participation and public problem-solving

Local Democracy Tune-up - E-Democracy.Org's proposal for citizen-led local democracy online "audits" of online content and features provided by government and media

Citizen Media Online Conference and Community of Practice - Democracies Online and E-Democracy.Org proposal for a virtual wing ding that brings the thousands of Knight News Challenge applicants and others together online for the best darn e-conference ever followed by an ongoing online community of practice

More Ideas

While anonymous speech has its place online, so does civil speech with the effective use of real names.

E-Democracy.Org proposes a partnership with ten media outlets interested in piloting real name strategies adapting our successful Issues Forum model. The approach will be generalized to blog comments, story comments, and online forums.

A preliminary phase will include a research with an academic partner to survey public and local community leader attitudes toward different styles of online speech geared toward local communities. This baseline data will inform a post-deployment evaluation of civility, deliberativeness, and agenda-setting through online interaction.

In phase one, a balanced and diverse citizen panel of active news consumers wil be gathered to explore and articulate their expectations as well as make specific recommendations. In phase, two a survey of the public and journalists will seek to quantify support for principles and recommendations.

Example recommendations might include ensuring the ability of online readers to comment directly online to the reporter or editor of every story including wire services or quality guidelines for online comments and the use of real names or aliases.

Draft grant proposals:


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