Peer Reviewing of items of Literary Opinions/ Blogs/ Debates

Dear alok,
ur blog was very good and thought provoking. In itself it gets me to think of some scientific answer to the questions u raise. Look at that, i just happen to hit upon one Internet link , and the link seemed to suggest the solution to the problem of **extreme public bitching of every thing within public domain.**
PEER REVIEW! Isn't that a suggested hint to solve the problem.I was reading that on Wikipedia. What clicked was that a Peer Review Group has to be formed, something on the lines of the Royal Society, which may scrutinise everything that is produced in the public domain of solicited and unsolicited thoughts/opinions/feelings. The basic route of formation of Ethics in most situations is...
Level 1:
Informal Platform
-- here public opinion/thoughts/feelings rise on the subjects, which may or may not be able to conform to all the values that our society likes to uphold. Such opinions-- formed on places like Newspapers/ Movies/ Orkut/Facebook/ blogs/ News comments/etc , may not be all correct, or rather completely renounce-able. Maybe a combination of some views may be the most consensual solution to the problem faced. (in this regard, it is worth mentioning that the website Wikipedia itself works on the system of Peer Review, and hold the Consensus-based approach as the only method for the unbiased view to the problem. Until the problem is diagnosed to the core so that a consensus emerges, it likes to uphold both, or more, the core points discovered/explored until.)
Therefore, these Informal Points become the feed for the next level for scrutinising at the Peer Review level.

That leads us to Level 2: the peer review.
At this level, the intense investigations and peer review happen to bring out the core points.

The whole argument then undergoes many repeated switches between Level 1 and Level 2, until the consensus emerges.
Sometimes the process takes years , or even generations, for it to complete. Until then, the core points around which the argument is suspended is presented to the readers by the peer group as their rightful prevailing opinion on the matter.
To the question of how to choose the members of Peer group, here is approach for it:- the ones who have practised maximum on the investigations of the topic, on a large variety of subjects, and /or have managed to give good count of solutions which are/have arrived Consensus, can hold eligibility to be the Peer Group Members.
I invite you to read and investigate more on the above lines.

Have a nice and happy Holi.


  1. I think peer review, as you mention it, is a great solution. Wikipedia, as you mention, is a great example (although there are many famous stories about how wrong Wikipedia can be, even after the intense scrutiny its articles go through).

    However, I think Peer Review in the public domain should be different from the process used in Scientific communities, which takes a lot of time.

    My vision of it is something like this:

    - If a report is published, it is instantly discarded by the public as possibly false. Public opinion would be changed only on further reports on the same topic.

    - If subsequent reports on the same topic do not add anything to the original one, the topic loses credibility and public interest.

    - However, if subsequent reports do add some substance to the topic (maybe by providing proof), it gains credence and belief.

    - Finally, the process continues until a proper body in the same field of study confirms/refutes the story. Not until this point should the story be completely believed/refuted.

    I think this would increase newspaper sales as people would buy more newspapers or watch more TV channels as the contest to prove a report goes on (much like a debate). Thus, this solution is lucrative too.

    Furthermore, this process is faster.

    What do you say?

  2. Better idea: make this a reality show! (joking)


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