May 01, 2019 2019-05-01
Kialo is an easy-to-use tool to engage in thoughtful discussion, understand different points of view, and help with collaborative decision-making in areas such as science, technology, and education. With Kialo, users can take on issues big or small, build consensus on a topic, and explore every aspect of a discussion. They can participate in existing discussions or create their own, making them either public or private. Discussion topics run the gamut, from “Is Hamlet Mad?” to “Should all children be taught to code in school?” to “Has social media been good for humanity?” Once they’ve chosen a discussion, users decide their position—pro or con—and add their opinions via “claims.” Participants are encouraged to read other users’ contributions and like them or add follow-up responses. To ensure meaningful contributions, Kialo offers two features: (1) Discussion creators can moderate commenting (and accept or modify suggestions) so that new contributions stay on topic and remain respectful. (2) When users try to add a new claim, they can see other, similar claims, to make sure that their thoughts are truly additive and not duplicative. Visualizations that appear alongside discussions offer a snapshot of how the argument is playing out and which claims are getting the most likes.