The Moderator in Government-Initiated Internet Discussions: Facilitator or Source of Bias?

The Moderator in Government-Initiated Internet Discussions: Facilitator or Source of Bias?

Arthur R. Edwards (Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-130-8.ch008
OnDemand PDF Download:
$30.00
List Price: $37.50

Abstract

The importance of moderation of online policy discussions is widely recognized. However, much less attention has been paid to the social interface in which moderators perform their tasks. In many cases, moderators have to cooperate with civil servants, elected officials and representatives of social organizations. In this chapter I look at the management of six government-initiated online discussions in The Netherlands. It can be concluded that moderators perform various important functions. In this, they contribute to the interactivity and openness of the discussions. But they also form part of a new interface between citizens and public administration with its own power relations and possible biases. It is concluded that moderators have to strike a balance between different parties involved in the discussion. Various provisions are suggested to make this possible.

Complete Chapter List

Search this Book:
Reset