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posted by martyb on Tuesday January 12 2021, @03:39PM   Printer-friendly
from the Crowdsourced-Government dept.

Taiwan has found a way to use a carefully designed social network constructively.
As stated in the Tyee,

Taiwan Is Crowdsourcing an Everybody-Wins Democracy

They had to do something. In 2014,

Opponents to the bill felt not just defeated, but invisible. The government had promised to listen to their concerns, but simply hadn't done so, rushing the bill onto the parliament floor. They had the votes; they could get it through. So that evening, protesters scaled the fence, kicked the door open and streamed onto the floor of Taiwan's parliament, the Legislative Yuan.

Sound familiar from recent history?

Well, the government found a way to listen.

They set up vTaiwan, a social network where prominence is given to posts that further concord instead of discord. And they're using it to craft proposals for legislation. Anyone can contribute.

The article doesn't state how the social network determines which posts promote consensus. I'd like to know.


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  • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Tuesday January 12 2021, @05:47PM (5 children)

    by JoeMerchant (3937) on Tuesday January 12 2021, @05:47PM (#1098943)

    the users' agreements and disagreements can imaginably provide the data they need to make the decisions on what to present.

    Sounds ripe for gaming to me.

    Ever since Digg, the concept of up/down votes has been used to manage popular message boards ordering of stories, Reddit comes to mind as one big current one. Some people play for the obvious most upvotes, some play for the most downvotes, and some play to get the most controversy - a mix of up and down votes, while a great many people don't bother to play at all and just type to read their own writing. For those who do play, the strategies include things like keywords and phrases to "trigger" a big response - particularly among certain groups, publication at specific times of day to get the best positioning vs global readership reactions, presentation of a photo - particularly in cropped index form, etc. Even the Green site, and to a lesser degree SN, has a strong bias toward presentation of Frosty Piss to the readers.

    If the algorithms are truly open source, they will be gamed - actually it's virtually certain they already have been gamed, particularly with a userbase centered in Taiwan.

    --
    🌻🌻 [google.com]
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  • (Score: 2) by maxwell demon on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:16PM (4 children)

    by maxwell demon (1608) on Tuesday January 12 2021, @06:16PM (#1098958) Journal

    From the description posted here, I guess that the system will give posts prominence that get many “agree”s from people who usually disagree with the one who posted it. If that is true, you can of course get visibility by simply writing something that you don't actually agree with, but that's just plain old trolling, not gaming the system. And it only works if you don't *always* do it, because then the system will simply count you to the other group.

    Maybe you can game the system by being consistently inconsistent, but then I guess the system would simply see that you don't fit any group at all, and therefore not give your agreements and disagreements much value.

    So I don't see a way how that system could be effectively gamed. Which of course doesn't imply it cannot be, but at least it seems to be challenging.

    But then, maybe I guessed completely wrong how the system works anyway.

    --
    The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
    • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Tuesday January 12 2021, @10:43PM (3 children)

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Tuesday January 12 2021, @10:43PM (#1099130)

      You forgot sock puppets... all the best gaming approaches use sock puppets.

      --
      🌻🌻 [google.com]
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @01:21AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @01:21AM (#1099232)

        I totally disagree. Since I post for both the RNC and DNC when either pays me for "advertising", I can assure you there are much better ways to game the system.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @01:33AM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 13 2021, @01:33AM (#1099242)

        Taiwan does use something like sock puppets in an effort to combat misinformation without censorship. These accounts are used to post responses that e.g., point out that anything from qanon is batshit insane rather than banning the insane posts. These are used in mainstream social media sites.

        If the US had a system like this, every tweet by Trump would have been responded to with a barrage of tweets pointing out that what Trump said had no basis in truth nor reality.

        Not sure it would work here though. Trump supporters are not known for nuance nor changing their minds when presented with evidence.

        • (Score: 2) by hendrikboom on Sunday January 17 2021, @09:41PM

          by hendrikboom (1125) on Sunday January 17 2021, @09:41PM (#1101697) Homepage Journal

          Not sure it would work here though. Trump supporters are not known for nuance nor changing their minds when presented with evidence.

          No, but it might affect those who are sitting on the fence.

          -- hendrik