Friday, September 16, 2011

"Community PlanIt turns civic engagement into a game — and the prize is better discourse"

This is fantastic - I so want to see GV or NC(s) try this out...
(or, are we too small for it to be optimal...)

A Nieman Labs blogpost, about a tool for constructive online civic engagement -

"...a civic-media experiment aimed at generating positive behavior ... Community PlanIt, a web-based social network that turns planning — in this case, designing standards for gauging school performance — into a big game. ... [All] are encouraged to play (nicely), and participation is rewarded with virtual currency. It’s an attempt to apply game dynamics to the pedestrian world of public comment.
The first Community PlanIt pilot happened earlier this year in Lowell, Mass., which sought community input on that city’s master plan. In that nine-day trial, 175 participants contributed more than 1,000 comments and spent more than 400 tokens, [Eric Gordon of Engagement Game Lab] said.
“What you often see at a meeting is, ‘Write your public comments on a sticky.’ And you have no idea what happens to those things. So this does a couple of things: It creates a public record of those comments so that they’re there and they will continue to be there, and then it has a clear sort of path between conversation and values.”

Exercise for the reader: under what conditions would Community PlanIt shine, vis-a-vis an Open Space Technology Unconference?

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