To correct someone in a discussion is to “show or tell someone that something is wrong and to make it right” (Cambridge Dictionary). The goals for this approach can vary. One goal may be to correct the speaker about a specific issue such as climate change or vaccination. Another goal might be to equip the speaker with general skills to identify inaccurate information. There might also be times when you want to make sure that others listening in on the conversation have access to correct facts.
Related Concepts. One issue with a correction approach is the possibility of “the backfire effect”: that something about the exchange causes listeners to double-down on their misbeliefs or misunderstandings. The prevalence of the backfire effect, and how it occurs, is contested among researchers and not as common as once thought . Regardless, researchers recommend framing corrections to align with the misinformation sharer’s worldview and citing sources that are associated with this worldview.
Correction is associated with various methods and applications in research:
Having empathy is pretty complicated to define, but it is an identification with someone else on an emotional level. According to one definition, “empathy is the ability to recognize, understand, and share the thoughts and feelings of another person, animal, or fictional character” (Psychology Today). Empathizing is a key mode of responding in conflictual exchanges where resolution or a transformation of the relationship is the goal.
Different researchers define empathy differently and distinguish between compassion, distress (being overwhelmed by the suffering of others) and empathic concern . In our catalog, these have currently all been grouped under the Empathize ARTT tag. We are currently reviewing whether these might be separated as separate response modes in future versions. For an introduction to empathy and related concepts of compassion, see .
Related concepts. One issue that has been identified is the potential for compassion fatigue, whereby people over-empathize and cause unhealthy amounts of distress for themselves.
Some methods highlighted under this response mode are:
Norms are principles of “right action binding upon the members of a group and serving to guide, control, or regulate proper and acceptable behavior’ (Merriam Webster). In our catalog, norms refer to both perceived descriptive norms (what most people do) as well as injunctive norms (what one ought to do) outside of the force of law .
Thus, this tag includes reminders of social value ascribed to accuracy as well as “nudges” — a non-coercive device that leads people to certain decisions — towards being respectful and open in communication. Some approaches from conflict resolution may also be tagged under this tag.
Related concepts. When it comes to encouraging norms in online spaces, public shaming can be a problematic method . A key issue is the desire to maintain relationships between the people engaging in discussion.
Some methods associated with ‘encouraging norms’ are:
One definition of listen is “to hear something with thoughtful attention: give consideration” (Merriam Webster). While listening may not seem like much of a response, it is a critical part of a trust-building exchange, especially in situations where one is thinking about the possibilities for longer term dialogue or engagement outside the immediate message being discussed .By listening silently, participants can understand more about whether to respond or how to respond. For example, it may be that the person you want to engage with isn’t really willing or ready to discuss differences of opinion . It can also be that responding to a query only with factual answers misses cues that the message writer is sending about problems they are having.
Listening can depend on the goals of the conversation. Several types have been defined by scholars. For example, listening actively, where participants can use techniques to solicit more information from the speaker , can be a form of focused attention on another person that is helpful in democratic exchange  . These are different from cataphatic listening, which focuses on how to respond in order to debate, defend, or critique .
Related concepts. One issue that has been noted related to active listening is that it may not be effective in all contexts. For example, marital researcher John Gottman and colleagues were surprised to see that this technique seemed, at times, to create more conflict; however, the subsequent debate related to two-person/dyadic and marital conversations revealed that the precise meaning of “active listening” itself can be understood differently.
Examples of listening techniques include: