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Issues Forums FAQ -

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Issues Forums FAQ


Revision as of 16:54, 8 August 2007 by Tim Erickson (Talk | contribs) (How)

DRAFT E-Democracy.Org Issues Forum FAQ

These questions were drafted a number of years ago and need to be updated with answers. A local forum may pick and choose questions and answers they would like use/adapt for use with their forum from this master list. Many of the sections in the 60 page Issues Forum Guidebook present fodder for this FAQ.

Our FAQ is broken into three parts - Why, How, and Impact.


  • Why don't you currently use weblogs?
  • Why don't you allow anonymous or alias-based participation?
  • Isn't it a violation of free speech to limit what folks talk about or the way they express themselves?
  • Do you moderate posts?
    • As a general policy, E-Democracy.Org does not moderate posts of individual participants. By this we mean, that participants are able to post directly to the forum without review by the forum manager or anyone else. However, forum managers are authorized to "moderate" posts as a temporary means of dealing with various issues that come up in the forum. We view "moderation" as a temporary solution.
  • What do you mean - a facilitated forum?
    • Our forum managers play an active role in our forums, often acting as discussion facilitators, with the goal of encouraging new voices to participate in the forum, encouraging civility, and encouraging participants to move off their normal positions and look at questions from a different perspective.
  • Why don't you promote online polls?


  • How do I join?
  • How does the 2 post per 24 hour system work?
    • Basically, if the limit in your forum is 2 posts per 24 hours, then whenever you want to post a message our system will look back 24 hours and count the number of times you have posted in the previous 24 hours. If the answer is 0-1 posts, they you will be allowed to post again. However, if you have already posted twice in the last 24 hours, then the system will reject your post.
    • Example:
      • Post #1 = Monday at 10:00 AM
      • Post #2 = Monday at 1:00 PM
      • Next eligible post will be Tuesday at 10:01
      • Next eligible post will be Tuesday at 1:01 PM
  • Does it cost anything to participate?
    • No participation in E-Democracy.Org forums is FREE.
  • How do I post to a forum?
  • How do I deal with more e-mail? How do I filter my incoming e-mail?
  • Is a digest or summary version available?
    • Yes! Here are instructions
      1. Login to the site
      2. Try (Reset Password) if you have lost or forgotten your password.
      3. Follow the "Change Email Settings" link, near the bottom of the page
      4. Find the group which you wish to receive via "digest" and select CHANGE "message notification setting"
      5. Then select "Daily Digest of Topics"
  • Do I have to read all of the posts to participate?
  • Are posts available/archived on the web?
  • Can I remove a post from the archive?
  • Will I receive more spam by participating?
  • What level of privacy should I expect?
  • How do I deal with unwanted private communication?
  • Can I just subscribe to the topics that interest me most?
  • How do I file a complaint about another participants public post?
  • How do I appeal a warning/removal notice that I have received from the Forum Manager? What level of due process can I expect?
  • How are Forum Managers selected?
  • How do I complain about forum management?
  • Can I participate if I disagree with your rules?
  • How do I propose changes to your rules?
  • How can I volunteer to help E-Democracy.Org with the forum in my town or to create new forums?


  • Do you know who participates (readers and posters) on your forums?
  • Do elected officials participate?
  • Do journalists participate?
  • How "public" are the forums? Will my comments show up in the newspaper?
  • Are your forums representative?
  • What about the "digital divide" aren't your forums excluding people who are not online?
  • How "deliberative" are your forums?
  • Do political interests attempt to control or take over forums? Do they gain undue influence? * Do you reach consensus online or take action as a group?
  • Can others promote competitive forums via your network?
  • Who legally owns the forums?
  • Has E-Democracy.Org been sued or held liable for the content of posts?
  • What is the advantage of the Chapter model?
  • How is E-Democracy.Org governed? How "democratic" is it?
  • What are your future technology needs?

Please add more questions - then we will sort, combine, reorder and then ANSWER.


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