An Online Environment for Democratic Deliberation: Motivations, Principles, and Design
We have created a platform for online deliberation called Deme (which rhymes with 'team'). Deme is designed to allow groups of people to engage in collaborative drafting, focused discussion, and decision making using the Internet. The Deme project has evolved greatly from its beginning in 2003. This chapter outlines the thinking behind Deme's initial design: our motivations for creating it, the principles that guided its construction, and its most important design features. The version of Deme described here was written in PHP and was deployed in 2004 and used by several groups (including organizers of the 2005 Online Deliberation Conference). Other papers describe later developments in the Deme project (see Davies et al. 2005, 2008; Davies and Mintz 2009).