You don’t know if your idea is any good the moment it’s created. Neither does anyone else. The most you can hope for is a strong gut feeling that it is. And trusting your feelings is not as easy as the optimists say it is. There’s a reason why feelings scare us—because what they tell us and what the rest of the world tells us are often two different things.

~ Hugh MacLeod


This quote, I think, also alludes to the problem of people “not getting” new ideas. It turns out that the same problem exists for old ideas to which people have grown unaccoustomed through lack of use.

Online discussion in forums is not a new idea. It’s a time-tested idea; They can be a space to focus interaction. There are ground rules. There’s a border defining what’s inside and what’s outside. Those inside have skin in the game. There is accountability.

The challenge is for each of us to resume engaging in reasoned discourse with others. That can be done in many places, not just in online forums. But in general, we’ve lost it in, (something like,) the last ten years when the current incarnation of the social networks rose and ate our attention.