MIND THE DISCUSSION GAP

February 25, 2015

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The days are long gone when, to solve or discuss important issues, communities would have to gather in person, as a tribe, or in the meeting hall. Individuals would often need to shout loudly to be heard and put a point across. But then, as now, debates were popular; the majority, witnessing a discussion representing different points of view, could assent or dissent in conclusion, or take the conversation further.

These days, we enjoy the luxury of addressing issues, discussing news and connecting with our tribe on the Internet. In the early online years, discussion forums were the only digital destination for the discussion of subjects that mattered and similar interests, be that movies, business, global warming, politics or science. Then social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter started offering a more abbreviated platform for exchange of views. LinkedIn chipped in with a space for business-related matters. And so on.

In theory, there is an abundance of spaces where society members can express their views, opinions and ideas, and gather opinions and feedback from others based anywhere in the world. But while social-media platforms are powerful and interactive, and can generate valuable input for managers if they are used in the right way, they do not give individual users the level of control over conversation that forums do. And, as much as people still love forums, they are falling out of fashion as mobile apps begin successfully to replace them.

So what will a new and improved generation of conversational app look like? NewsSocial thinks it has the answers. Its interesting Tag hub permits in-depth exploration of one topic while also linking to a variety of related forums. In the forum spaces, news is tagged by topic after being aggregated from variety of premium sources. Finally, crucially, NewsSocial also draws on social media strengths to allow following and linking to other users whom you can network with either online or offline. There is even an element of gaming, too.

Anyone interested in leading a discussion or having a conversation (rather than just commenting) can do so, and so raise the status of their profile while also building an effective social structure in which to network with people interested in that subject – in private or public.

If NewsSocial is correct in having understood the missing human links in current social-media or forum platforms, and what the existing gaps are in ease of use and quality control that need to be bridged to satisfy social needs, they can be expected to take off spectacularly. We spend huge amounts of time interacting online but most would say that greater quantity does not necessarily mean great quality. Possibly, NewsSocial’s intensive customisation and effective tagging and moderation standards for discussions can bring back a greater quality of debate, and help digital users give freer voice to topical and underground issues, challenging the status quo in a safe and well managed mobile online environment.

See what users are saying about this service

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