I wanted to commend this conversation about the hurt of broken trust to the possibility of honest conversations, which I found over at Jordon Cooper’s blog. Its an exploration of the subject in response to comments by John O’Keefe.
H.R. Niebhur once defined faith as having trust and confidence in something or someone. It was part of an intriguing speech to scientists and their role for deepening human lives. Part of what bugs me about the recent discussion over whether good conversations can be had in the blogosphere is this matter of trust: whether we can have enough trust in each other–in the good will of each other’s arguments and motives, for instance–to engage, to listen, to open up authentically. Depending on how you look at it, I gather comment policies either inhibit or ensure some degree of trust. Some people think that the presence of “censorship” eviscerates the possibility of being free to speak one’s mind. Others think that a community of dialogued where some aren’t interested in authentic dialogue but instead on shouting, ranting, flaming or trolling makes it impossible for true conversation to continue.
Trust is essential for dialogue. How can we build a space where trust abounds? How do you build it online where people are not face-to-face? Think it can be done?