The on-line meeting described herein was a collaboration of the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, the National Performance Review, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Mitre Corporation. Jonathan Gill, Thomas Kalil, Randy Katz and Howard Shrobe provided more support. Research was partly supported by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency of the Department of Defense under contract number MDA972-93-1-003N7.

The term public sphere was brought to contemporary attention by Habermas [1], who links the decline of public spaces for political discussion to the rise of mass media.

Led by Larry Koskinen and Andy Campbell

The Clinton-Gore team used face-to-face "townhall meetings" 1992 presidential campaign and later in the Clinton I administration to get public attention for its issues and positions, while bypassing the national mass media. This populist strategy was highly successful with citizens and voters, but soured the team's relationships with the journalists, editors and owners of the media.

Multi-media messages will not entirely eliminate the problem, especially when speakers do not know each other or are from different cultures.

Self-indexing is often used in political discourse to emphasize the intention of certain utterances. One famous example is Zola's attack on the French government for its cover-up in the Dreyfus affair: J'accuse.

People are often upset because discourse grammars work to mitigate the threats to face -- people's power and dignity -- that is inherent in social interactions. Violations of the grammar are consequently implicit attacks on face[10].

This method is no longer useful, due to the proliferation of free mail services.

In addition to contributing a letter of welcome to the meeting, the Vice-President Gore did post two questions.

The second idea follows from [15], an implemented application of agent technology, using cluster analysis of email to find individuals with similar interests. Inversely, cluster analysis of the distribution of participants over the discussions may suggest cross links that are not apparent at the text level.

Roger Hurwitz
Tue Aug 18 16:30:36 EDT 1998