What is aiki.wiki?
™aiki.wiki is a work in progress for a new emerging digital platform designed for trusted online consensus building between large groups of users.
Through the process of negotiating an ‘aiki.wiki’, users collaborate to build a shared narrative which is published in the voice of the “rational consensus”.
The collaborative voice is written, edited, vetted and composed purely from rational and collaborative behaviors hard won in the consensus process, then featured as a main article in the library, called the ‘aiki atheneum’.
The result is a fully trusted, transparently vetted resolution that can be distributed on the web while it builds further consensus.
Using the aiki.wiki platform, a published mutual resolution is the only outcome possible.
It offers a unique approach to the “conflict of idea” and a viable solution for false consensus, fake news, misinformation, online deception, harassment, bullying, and intimidation by rebuilding a trusted rational web from the ground up.
How does aiki.wiki work?
One way aiki wiki works is by giving users the ability to assign and exchange three shared values to each other’s statements instead of “thumbs up or down emoticons”.
Pairing with this is the programmatic assigning of editing permissions to users based on their choices in assigning these three values. Editing permissions are earned in aiki wiki through hard-won negotiation between users. Each “aiki wiki” can have hundreds of permissions assigned to one article.
There is a psychological element to aiki.wiki – with an emphasis on “logical”. While users ultimately decide the outcome of the consensus without requiring a centralized third party to arbitrate – the platform algorithm can account for all behaviors inside of the process and truly assign micro permissions through the collaborative exchange.
This can allow the most trusted members of a community to emerge as “admins” to any given article, a higher permission rewarded to the users with the highest count of rational and collaborative behaviors.
Why do you say it produces ‘mutual resolution’?
Resolution is the only logical outcome of an aiki.wiki discussion because editing permissions are won in pairs between two editors who have conflicting assignments to any part of an article, or basically a disagreement of some kind.
To work through this disagreement, aiki.wiki allows for users to work a social contract with each other that requires no third party to administer the outcome. This social contract is constructed in such a way that allows users a natural set of choices inside of the narrative of their discussion that can only resolve in a mutual resolution.
aiki.wiki resolves this through an algorithm that changes the consensus building process into a mutually beneficial ‘game’, where admitting errors in assignments allow a user to win a permission just as much as highlighting an error made by another user. Instead of users competing to see who can “win or lose” an argument, aiki.wiki changes disagreements into “win-win” collaborative assignments.
Additionally, the algorithm allows users discussions to generate a narrative about the discussion itself, programmatically through all users decisions and behaviors. This creates a community-directed narrative and feedback loop of the direction of the consensus, where there is disagreements, where there are agreements, and which questions remain unresolved.
Programmatically speaking, aiki.wiki can only fail to produce a resolution for an individual (as opposed to the collective) if an individual chooses not to complete the discussion and leave. To the collaborative, even if one user chooses to leave the discussion and their specific point of view open before resolution, another user can come in and easily take up their space in the consensus.
Since the discussion itself is what generates, edits, and refines the article, users are more likely to stay inside of the discussion so they can influence the output.
So if you have two sides in a dispute that are very extreme, say political or religious points of view, is a resolution still to be expected?
No matter what point of view or group exists in a collaborative, each point of view is going to have a segment of their adherents who tend to be more rational initially than others.
This segment could be minuscule, small or large, it does not matter. It only takes one rational individual to alter a consensus between many people on aiki.wiki.
aiki wiki makes sure that the rational parties in each ideological conflict ‘find each other’ and the consensus builds from there.
How can aiki.wiki determine if someone is ‘rational’?
There are three grades to how aiki.wiki could identify a user making rational choices and one of those grades is graded at the user level, not the platform.
The first grade is honesty. Is a user being honest with their answers to the very best of their ability? Ultimately only they know for sure. While the platform’s algorithm could never determine that, other users potentially can, so a very simple level of “self-reflection” can be tested in the consensus process because each user can answer that to themselves and their assignments may be tested by others for honesty.
When users are honest to the best of their ability, all of their responses in consensus building should show rational behaviors and they should expect to be awarded dozens of editing permissions because ultimately, this is really how “rational” can be defined in consensus building in ways most users can understand without being esoteric or philosophical.
The second grade is similar to how “rational” is defined in economics.
Is the user able to argue and define their own self-interests in the discussion? In explaining their own self-interests, are there any contradictions?
These questions naturally become resolved and recorded within the rules of aiki.wiki’s algorithm to assign or predict an editing permission.
The third grade takes that one step further.
Can the user now argue or define the interests of another user?
If a user is capable all of those things, the algorithm can identify them and award them an editing permission.
Additionally, the way the discussion is formatted offers users multiple chances and opportunities to make rational choices based on the grades above.
So voting algorithms, like thumbing up or down, liking, etc are not applied in aiki.wiki?
Voting up or down is never used to determine a rational consensus or the outcome of a consensus.
Voting is inherently flawed, so while voting is an open democratic process that gives everyone a voice is a sign of a more open and civil society, it does not necessarily ensure that what is voted to the top is accurate, trustworthy, dependable, etc. (see 2016 election)
Voting is still allowed, however, to occur on aiki.wiki, it is not something that is suppressed.
Thumbing up or down is still valuable information in a consensus process, it informs a rational consensus of the personal side of the process.
So users can still have a ‘human’ discussion, and not be forced to discuss programmatically, or in legalese like attorneys?
Yes. aiki.wiki allows for lively discussion, especially humor, to take place. aiki.wiki should be fun and natural.
What is unique about aiki.wiki is not just how it can produce a rational consensus, but also how users can use and appreciate creativity, subjectivity, and personal expression and how important those voices also are in a consensus process.
How does aiki.wiki remove trolling, harassment, or deception used in a consensus process?
aiki.wiki is designed with certain principles in mind regarding behaviors. Ideally, aiki.wiki should not seek to change user’s behavior or ideas, just change the environment the user is in while discussing them. The environment for an aiki.wiki discussion makes it less and less likely abusive behaviors will emerge because the environment for aiki.wiki supports genuine, honest, and rational exchange between users.
aiki.wiki does this by allowing one narrative or article to flow through three different types of forums or “voices”.
Each forum teases through different types of discussions and different types of user behaviors.
So where discussions become critical and require rational resolution aiki.wiki naturally filters it through one forum, while discussions that erupt into personal attacks, ridiculous arguments, or even just personal commentary are filtered through another.
What is organizing the whole process are the individual choices made by individual editors and applying it as a collective result published as an article.
So aiki.wiki should make it impossible for trolls to compete in a rational consensus or gain consensus where none is warranted.
Everyone can make their own choices how they choose to communicate in an aiki.wiki, however. Everything is also “permitted”. It just takes more work to abuse the consensus than it does to participate rationally.
Can aiki.wiki be ‘gamed’?
That is actually the point of aiki.wiki, to ‘gamify’ critical discussion. The game is very subtle and is created through a narrative that forms about the discussion itself, based on users choices. This story about the discussion is collectively written and should add a subtle layer of “gamification” that follows the natural arcs of engagement users are involved in.
When an online dialogue is structured as a natural game, aiki.wiki would be more similar to chess, and less similar to games that require deception, like poker. However, unlike both of those games, aiki.wiki is a non-zero-sum game, turning win or lose arguments into win-win choices between users which builds the shared narrative.
If someone attempts to alter the algorithm, they are going to find that it is much easier to game the discussion the way aiki.wiki allows rather than to game the discussion by introducing deception into the stratagem of the discussion.
We need an aiki.wiki or at least something like it!
Barack Obama has now mentioned the necessity of something like aiki.wiki for the poisoned media landscape. I believe aiki wiki is an idea whose time has come.
Bill Maher recently interviewed Barack Obama and Obama talks about this necessity around the 15:00 mark.
What is the aiki atheneum?
The Atheneum is a collaborative library that contains all of the published resolutions reached in a consensus through aiki wiki.
How is that like Wikipedia?
It is not like Wikipedia. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, while aiki atheneum is a library.
For example, Wikipedia itself can be one component in the Atheneum, and Wikipedia editors could use aiki wiki to arrive at a stronger consensus and article on Wikipedia.
aiki wiki is not a competitive platform, it is not seeking to replace anything, just improve everything. Offering tools to a wide variety of platforms helps aiki.wiki grow too.
Where is it?
You can visit us while we are still getting up and running at http://aiki.wiki.
So far just the prototype for the Atheneum is coded, and I have about three months of coding to complete phase one of aiki.wiki.
When will it be completed?
I’m hoping soon, I haven’t much free time to work on it and I am funding it myself. There is still so much work to be completed on this project.
So why is it up now?
It was not my intention to release any information about this project yet but because of online harassment on RationalWiki, it has become somewhat necessary.
aiki wiki has figured into the background of Wikipedia, We Have a Problem, why?
Wikipedia We Have a Problem grew from me just researching for aiki.wiki. I have a massive curiosity for online discussions and especially “wikis” in general. In both wiki wars that I involved myself in, I adhered to ‘rules of engagement’ formulated in aiki wiki, and I wanted to see how that outcome would play out in a hostile environment on a platform that is not suited for social interaction.
Additionally, my fascination with ‘wiki wars’ and my own wiki idealism was the conclusion of my TEDx talk, “Google Consciousness”, where I noted that Israeli and Palestinian Wikipedia editors were able to build shared narratives, a feature of what I believe will be social media evolving to replace government as we use it today, alluding to something like an ‘aiki wiki’.
What was OS 0 1 2?
aiki wiki is somewhat derived from a very experimental, and very fun viral media project I co-created fifteen years ago in 2002 called OS 0 1 2. It may have been one of the first artifacts of early “meme” culture, as part of OS 0 1 2 was literally introducing thousands of online users to the word “meme”, referring to itself as a “master meme” to “stop the war before it starts” – a protest against the looming invasion of Iraq over suspicious claims of Weapons of Mass Destruction.
It was an essay that was collaboratively written online in a very organic manner, literally by copying and pasting emails and forum texts into a web page manually and then getting other people to share it or collaborate spontaneously.
The essay itself was just a collection of rules for the construction, deconstruction, valuation, and analysis of the document itself, in many ways a homegrown, organic precursor to a “smart contract” with a playful theatrical twist, a “joke” the reader would only get after understanding how OS 0 1 2 worked.
At the time, I participated with others in the creation of an online character called “Bubblefish” the “Flame Warrior”, performing theater, and confronting pro-war “trolls” on many forums, “tricking” them into having a rational discussion about the curation of the OS 0 1 2 document.
Honestly, it was probably one of the funniest, most exhilarating experiences of my life. It took me a number of years to fully comprehend and understand how unique, ahead of its time, and special the worlds first “collaborative operating system for the human being” was.
It has been offline for a few years, but the last ‘updated’ OS is available here.