The format of this online dialogue is a unique one, designed to be a safe environment for people with diverse backgrounds and beliefs to find ways to explore their differences and learn from each other. In conjunction with a 10th anniversary display of artifacts, the museum invited people to join a more meaningful online conversation about September 11. We know that the Web can be a powerful tool for bringing people together to discuss common concerns. But, as anyone who has ever read comments on a news website can attest, many conversations on the Web lack accountability due to their anonymity, with people simply talking past each other. The online dialogue format we chose to use made candor more comfortable, exchanges more intimate, and disagreements more civil.
Organization: Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History
Audience: Diverse American and global citizens
Role: Project lead, content developer