Title: Analysing deliberation quality of online forum users in Turkey with net-based tools as variables

Authors: Demet Gencer-Kasap

Addresses: Faculty of Communication, New Media Department, Uşak University, Uşak, 64100, Turkey

Abstract: This study focuses on comparing the quality of online deliberations that have the same deliberation process, concept and discussion topics but use different net-based technologies. For this, a web-based forum (WBF), a social networking site (SNS) and a 3D virtual world were chosen as research areas. Discussions regarding Turkey's public issues were examined by using the rationalistic and ethical criteria that come from the studies of Jürgen Habermas. Techniques of quantitative content analysis and survey were employed for data collection. Findings suggest that instead of actions that are oriented toward the common good, competitive actions directed towards success are more commonly observed. Although it is difficult to say which media is more qualified to support deliberative public discussions, the WBF stands out in terms of justification and reciprocity, whereas the 3D virtual environment Second Life stands out in terms of principles of discursive equality, reciprocity and respect.

Keywords: deliberative democracy; online deliberations; Habermas; deliberation design; Turkey; WBF; web-based forums; Facebook; Second Life; social networking sites; SNS; 3D virtual worlds; common good; competitive actions; success; public discussions; justification; discursive equality; reciprocity; respect.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEG.2016.082676

International Journal of Electronic Governance, 2016 Vol.8 No.4, pp.356 - 380

Received: 03 Jan 2016
Accepted: 02 Aug 2016

Published online: 03 Mar 2017 *

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