RoR Politics: A digital solution to promote healthy political debate online

A first-of-its-kind project tailored for political debate, creating an integrated environment where “discussions on matters of public interest can be initiated and continued with contribution from different political parties and a fact-checking mechanism to support both sides equally,” said Matteo Flora, from Right of Reply.

Social media has become the primary means for businesses, politicians and decision makers to reach their audiences. As a consequence, we have witnessed the growth of fake news and increased media distrust, so political parties need tools to communicate clear and transparent messages to the public, reducing bias and partisanism, as well as nurturing a more informed and conscious electorate.

With widespread misinformation and biased content emerging from the political realm on social media, voters are increasingly vulnerable to manipulation by information fabricated to fit into propaganda.

In fact, research by the European Commission showed that, 85 percent of EU respondents believe fake news to be a problem in their country, with almost 83 percent perceiving false or misrepresentative information as a threat to democracy.

Addressing this problem, innovative tech company Right of Reply has designed a digital platform, RoR Politics, to counter misinformation and political propaganda online. RoR Politics is convenient and easy to navigate, making truthful information easy to reach, preventing bias and social bubbles.

“Most people are not used to looking into political debates anymore and are confined inside their own social media bubbles, always consuming the same kind of information,” Matteo adds.

Information displayed on RoR Politics is verified by an independent body, partner to RoR with no political affiliation to ensure balance. More than fact-checking, RoR Politcs is about creating an open environment for constructive political debate.

How does it work?

RoR Politics allows replies to be embedded in the same place as the original content, promoting open, democratic debate through five RoR patented tools:

1. About Me, About You: Automated updates on any web content — article, image, video, blog, forum — which mentions or quotes a particular politician, candidate or party in any manner; with new content specifically highlighted.

2. Speak Truth: Allows response to content by writing a reply and offering evidence of facts, helping the public to draw accurate conclusions by offering evidence and contextualisation.

3. Offer Debate: Offers the candidate cited and/or their opponent the opportunity to respond to specific content by writing a reply.

4. Response Available: Signals to voters and the general public on other search engines that the candidate’s response to content is available.

5. Public Talk: Creates one single certified online repository about a cited candidate and/or their opponent, including all content. Allows comparison between rival platforms and voting history.

Stefania Barbaglio, from Right of Reply commented: “Right of Reply is a socially aware company concerned about fairness and justice in all spheres. We harness innovative technologies to counter unfair content online and allow users to make informed decisions based on the truth. RoR Politics opens the gate to an era of accountability and truth in politics, re-establishing the balance of power in democratic societies in a time of weakening democratic institutions.”

Right of Reply is developing a range of platforms designed to improve debate online and manage online reputation. Visit its page

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