The current Israel/Palestine debate is already causing a tinderbox of heated dialogue online, particularly as it’s an emotive issue on which most people vehemently polarise to one side. It made me wonder: couldn’t AI help us to chat online with more nuance and less drama? Better yet, could it help us to better understand one another and give the issues at stake the perspective they – and we – deserve?

Fact-checking with AI:

Problem: False info can really mess up a good discussion.
Fix: AI can spot-check facts in real-time.

Example: Like how Factiverse does it –

Making Text Sound Nicer:

Problem: Text doesn’t always show our feelings, leading to misunderstandings.
Fix: Large Language Models, like ChatGPT-4, can help make our words sound kinder.

Example: Check out Dost –

Feeling the ‘Room’ with AI:

Problem: Conversations can get heated really fast!
Fix: AI tools can read the ‘room’s’ mood and remind folks to stay calm.

Example: Like Speak AI –

Offering Us Different Points of View:

Problem: We often read the same kind of information from the same sources and miss out on other views.
Fix: AI can suggest different articles to broaden our knowledge.

Example: Kinda like Deepsearch –

Organised AI Assisted Chats:

Problem: Chats can get messy with everyone sharing opinions.
Fix: AI can help structure talks, giving everyone an equal say.

Example: Think Kialo –

Asking the Right Questions with AI:

Problem: It’s sometimes tough to phrase our thoughts.
Fix: AI can offer cool prompts or questions to deepen the conversation.

Example: Wordtune does this –

Keeping Online Conversations Friendly:

Problem: Some online platforms turn nasty very quickly.
Fix: AI can make and maintain friendly chat rooms based on past chats.

Example: Like Kialo Edu –

Keeping Everyone Updated:

Problem: We might not always have the latest information with which to make judgements.
Fix: AI can let folks know if there’s something new to consider.

Example: Like Artifact does –

Spotting Hidden Biases:

Problem: Sometimes we don’t realise our biases.
Fix: AI can point out when we might be biased, helping us rethink our position.

Example: Check Honestymeter –

If we start using these AI tools more, maybe our online conversations, especially on sensitive topics like Israel/Palestine, would be a lot more productive. While AI isn’t magic, it can surely help. And I really wish these tools were integrated into our daily social networks. Wouldn’t that be cool?

UPDATE – 12 October 2023:

Some new reflections since posting the main article:

Talking about war online using AI tools like the Factiverse/HonestyMeter can be tricky:

Both Sides Seem Equal: The tool might make it seem like both sides are equally right or wrong, even if one side is lying or doing bad things.

Missing the Human Side: Just looking at facts can make us forget about real people getting hurt.

Fake News: Wars can have a lot of made-up stories. The tool might not catch them all.

Missing Background Info: Wars have deep stories and histories. The tool might not get that.

Quiet Voices: Some important opinions might get overlooked.

Right vs. Wrong: Wars can have big right vs. wrong issues. The tool might not see this.

Depending Too Much: If we trust the tool too much, we might miss other important info.

Tricking the Tool: Bad guys might figure out how to make lies look true to the tool.

So, while the tools are great, they’re not perfect. When discussing something as big as war, we need to think critically constantly!