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Debate Healthcare :: How does it work?
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How does it work?

What we want to accomplish:

  1. Every participant of the Forum should be able to present his or her ideas for debate.
  2. The debates should be conducted in a way that the merit of the view presented will be evaluated. This can be best achieved by taking every statement apart into elementary theses which can be verified by facts.

How we want to do it:

  1. People tend to be more rational if their well-being depends on their decisions. For this reason we have established a scoring system, with points, called Wisdom Dollars (W$), which need to be put along with any post on this discussion board.
  2. Anyone presenting an opinion for a challenge needs to “invest” some of his or her Wisdom Dollars in this opinion. Anyone disagreeing with, or supporting, an opinion presented for challenge needs to “invest” some of his or her Wisdom Dollars as well when posting a comment.
  3. As the debates progress, participants earn or lose their Wisdom Dollars “invested” in particular thesis.
  4. Nothing is final; the same view can be rephrased endlessly and placed for challenges.

The rules:

  1. Participation in the debates is only for registered members of the Forum. However, the Forum is public, and available for everyone to read.
  2. Participants are encouraged to use their real identities. Using pseudonyms is acceptable; however, the owners of this discussion Forum will provide preferred treatment for users using their real identities.
  3. When signing up, every participant receives a credit of W$1,000.00 (one thousand Wisdom Dollars).
  4. Every new post placed for the debate is called a challenge, and requires an investment of a minimum of W$11.00 and a maximum of W$100.00.
  5. Before opening a new challenge for debate, the site administrator reviews the challenge and assigns a moderator for this challenge. 
  6. Every comment placed in support of a challenge or in opposition to it requires an investment of a minimum of W$2.00 and a maximum of W$10.00. A user can place multiple comments. Specifically, a member can post a comment supporting some aspects of a challenge, and another comment against other aspects of the challenge.
  7. Users can express support,  or a lack of it, for the challenge or to any other post without posting a comment by clicking one of two buttons:  “W$1.00 AGREE”, or “W$1.00 DISAGREE”. This will constitute an investment of W$1.00 for or against the corresponding statement.
  8. A forum member assigned as a moderator for a given challenge can make comments, request explanation, and ask questions but is not allowed to “invest” any of his or her Wisdom Dollars in this particular challenge.
  9. A challenge should be determined as false or true no earlier than one day and no later than two weeks after being posted. The default time for challenge resolution is one week. The truthfulness of a challenge will be determined by a moderator based solely on the arguments posted on this Forum in response to the challenge, not on the knowledge known to the moderator otherwise.
  10. After the challenge resolution, a participant presenting a challenge earns or loses the amount of Wisdom Dollars invested in the challenge. For example: a new user with W$1000.00 credit places a challenge and invests W$60.00 in it. If the challenge is resolved as true, this user earns W$60.00 and ends up having W$1060.00. If the challenge is resolved as false, this user loses W$60.00 and ends up having only W$940.00.
  11. After resolution of a challenge, every participant responding to this challenge earns or loses his or her investment. For example, a user who posted a comment supporting the challenge and invested W$5.00 in that comment earns W$5.00 if the challenge is found true, and loses W$5.00 if the challenge is found false.
  12. Similarly, everyone posting a comment to the comment earns his or her investment if the comment was on the winning side of the challenge, or loses his or her investment if the comment was on the losing side of the challenge.
  13. Members of the Forum placing a challenge are encouraged to form the challenge in a way that the outcome could be determined by finding facts supporting it.
  14. A member of the Forum who is not satisfied with the resolution of his or her challenge is encouraged to rephrase the challenge and post it again. Similarly, members of the Forum are encouraged to re-post challenges resolved previously if new data becomes available which can change the outcome of the challenge.
  15. Before placing a challenge, participants are encouraged to check for currently open challenges, and if they have a challenge that is on the same issue as a currently open challenge, they are encouraged to post comments to the currently open challenge. Site administrators will postpone posting challenges which duplicate currently open challenges.
  16. Before placing a challenge, participants are encouraged to search for previously closed challenges on the same subject. By checking arguments presented in the already closed challenge, members can evaluate their chances of winning the challenge they plan to post.
  17. In the beginning, the owners of the Forum will appoint moderators. As the success of this Forum depends on the objectivity of the moderators’ decisions, the owners of this Forum have a vested interest in finding objective moderators, making decisions based on presented arguments, not on their personal political preferences.
  18. Gradually, new moderators will be recruited from top-earning participants.
  19. Forum members are encouraged to place a challenge requesting giving a moderator status to people they recognize as experts on the immigration issue.
  20. Forum members can place a challenge questioning objectivity of a moderator. If such challenge is determined true, the challenged person loses his or her moderator status. 

The format:

  1. The debates are grouped into traits. Only moderators can open a new trait. Any member can request a new trait.
  2. In the beginning there are two traits open.
    • The first one is “What is health care?” where members are encouraged to place challenges defining their opinions on what our health care policy should be, or should not be. What should be the objective of the ideal health care system? How should we define our best health care policy? How much power we should give to the government to control health care?
    • The second one is The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), commonly called Obamacare. 
  3. Members of the Forum are encouraged to bring up other health care policy concepts as new topics. For example it could be a health care policy developed by a think tank, an individual, or political group.

Hyde Park:

  1. In order to have a constructive opinion exchange, debates on the main forum are highly structured. As there always are loose ends, the Hyde Park section is a plain discussion forum, accessible both for members and the general public for placing any comments their desire.
  2. In the Hyde Park section members of this Forum can post any comments they wish; within the common standards of decency and good behavior.
  3. No Wisdom Dollars are required to make posts in the Hyde Park section.
  4. It is the Forum owners’ expectation that Hyde Park will be a platform for presenting fresh ideas.


  1. In this section the owners of the Forum place announcements about resolving challenges, about rule changes, monetary awards and other issues related to this Forum.

Monetary awards

  1. The owners of this Forum believe that some members who contribute more than others deserve monetary rewards in common dollars.
  2. The owners of this Forum encourage outside parties, both individuals and organizations, to fund awards for the members of this Forum.
  3. In order to encourage the spirit of an open debate, the owners of this Forum encourage potential donors to offer monetary rewards for those Forum members who present views opposite to those of the donors, but were able to present arguments that donors found valuable.

Work in progress

  1. The owners of this Forum reserve the right to change the rules.
  2. Members of this Forum are encouraged to present ideas about how this Forum can be improved.
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