In this social media age, not only has a voice, but a much louder one. The platforms have provided introverts and extroverts to be analysts, experts and engineers.
However, it seems that online debates mostly achieve one thing: divisiveness. Users typically have their minds made up and is mostly not willing to listen to the other side by either saying, “no-to-debate” or “solid supporter.”
Online debates can be great for society. Some may even call it a dialogue to achieve harmony and progress. However, there are a few points people need to remember when debating.
- Facts is facts
You can flip the script or point out how the revolution did not help the country but the numbers will be the same. Always read from reliable sources. Main media is not always right. Verify and ask how the study was taken. 1,500 does not represent 100million people.
- Do Not Be Condescending
If you’d like to come an understanding with someone, you do not call them idiots. Some people take longer to understand concepts. A bar top notcher does not know the responsibilities of being a PUI or PUM so anyone else could need a better explanation on how the world works.
- The Louder Voice is Not the Truth
Just because many people say doesn’t mean it’s the truth. Just because less people say it does not mean it’s not true.
- Understand the Big Picture.
If you’re not willing to listen and gather information, then you’re not well informed with your position. You can only know where you stand when you have all the facts. Otherwise, you’ve picked a spot randomly just because your friends/family stands on the same or you were taught that way.
- Criticising Does Not Mean Supporting
When we donate to a charity, we’d like to know how the money was spent. When taxes are derived on income and on all the things you buy(VAT) and is not spent well, we should be able to do the same. However, all leaders are humans. Feedback should be respectful and helps build, rather than break.
- Don’t be a Solid Supporter
It’s amazing how politicians can see all the failures of politicians from another party but do not call out their own for perhaps the same failure. Commend for a good job and call them out if needed. There’s no harm or shame in that. The good ones will take feedback to help be better. Solid supporter means that even if they cause harm, you’ll still support them. This is neither good for you, your family or your loved ones. No one wins with closed minds.
- Do What’s Best for Your family
Do not be associated with one party and despise the other. Politicians flip from one side to another every time not because their principles have changed, but because the other side has given them a better chance of winning.
- Be There to Educate & Get Educated
Help others with their perspective. Do not shove your ideas down their throat. Learn where they are coming from and show them where you are.
- Help Your Circle
We easily give way to people we know. If the user is a friend or cousin, we would probably not engage in a full on debate. If that’s someone else, name-calling would start the conversation. There’s no need to help everyone else’s perspective. Your small circle should be big enough to make a difference.
We do believe that if these 9 principles are not followed with online debates, you’re just looking for trouble and not contributing to society. You’re probably causing more stress to people than anything else. We do not need that at this time.
We need a meaningful exchange of ideas so that we will have better leaders and not the ones who are simply popular, good-looking, top-notcher and dance their way to a position.