Help:Creating a debate
You wish to begin a debate? Here are the main steps to creating a page.
1. Find a topic
Make sure that your debate isn’t already online
Try searching with different keywords to make sure that the topic isn’t already referenced.
Choose a topic that really is subject to debate
2. Find a good title
Formulate a yes-no question
Make your titles clear and short
|To avoid||To prefer|
|Does the use of vaccines present health risks for humankind?||Should be be vaccinated?|
|Is the western world going through a global crisis, both morally, culturally and spiritually?||Is Western Europe in decline?|
|Is the theory of neurophysiological determinism valid?||Do we have free will?|
3. Try to find as many PRO and CON points of view
Research diverse and opposing media
To be as neutral and comprehensive as possible, go through a variety of sources: books, articles and sites holding a consensual point of view; but also sources which clearly embrace a point of view, be it a minority one. Get out of your comfort zone by reading opinions which aren’t your own.
To propose arguments that are truly being defended, as well as to give more consistency to arguments, quote textes (books, articles, studies, etc…). Write down the sources.
Important: Each quotation must be attributed to a single argument. Separate each part of a same text in support of a different argument.
Summarise each argument with a title
To better organise the outline, summarise each argument or each quotation in a sentence.
4. Write an outline
Classify your arguments as PRO and CON/FOR and AGAINST by listing them out before hand
|Arguments IN FAVOUR||Arguments AGAINST|
How to classify the arguments which fall at the same time in the FOR and in the AGAINST category?
Group close arguments into families
Many arguments are variations of the same idea. To clarify the reading, try to group close arguments in the same family of arguments.
Families correspond to the main arguments of the debate. On the FOR side as on the COUNTER side, try to reach between 4 and 10 families.
Look for objections
Each argument FOR or AGAINST can give rise to counter-arguments (or objections). Search in first the unavoidable objections to each argument.
|Argument FOR||Argument AGAINST|
|Freedom of expression must be total for power to report abuse of power
|Freedom of expression must be limited to fight against hate speech
How to tell the difference between an objection and a AGAINST argument?
We take up the question of the debate and we try to answer: "No, because X", X being the proposition on which we have a doubt. If this sentence holds water, then X is an argument AGAINST. If the sentence seems odd or unsatisfactory, it may be an objection to a FOR argument, that it is search.
Build on existing debates
Check out debates at different stages of advancement.
5. Create the debate page
Do you have a debate title and a plan? Enter your title below and click on "Create debate":