In a world of 140 characters or less, “twitter debate” is simply 7 characters too wasteful. With tweeps and twitpics and twurls, it seemed only appropriate that our experiment be called a “twibate.” When we set out to do this, we had no idea if it was going to work well or not. We had no idea whether 10 minutes between questions would be far too long. We weren’t even sure what audience would be like. Yet, as we progressed with the experiment, we learned that there are actually some good ways to do this.
Is Twitter the be all and end all of debates? No. It has severe limitations. However, it actually did help some individuals make decisions, and it helped some candidates get messages out. It is a complimentary system, to the already established media for campaign messaging and political discourse.
The most difficult piece for myself, personally, has been getting the time to dissect the data. Twitter’s back-end functionality actually links tweets together *if* someone clicks the “reply” button as opposed to starting their tweet with “@[username]” without hitting the button. So side conversations can be completely unreliable without going through line-by-line and determining what conversation a [...]Read More