Since all of us are trying to get the best online debate experience, lets debate which of the top 3 online debate sites is the best. I posted a debate on each of the 3 debate sites to make the voting it truly democratic. Please vote, your vote counts.
Here are the details of my argument on the debate.org debate
The top 3 online debating options I would like to compare are Debate.org, CreateDebate.com, and an up-and-comer DebateIsland.com.
Debate.org is by far the oldest and most established online debating community. It offers the most robust formal debating functionality with comprehensive debate profiles and multiple formal rounds of debating, followed by voting. Debate.org is a leader for formal multi-day 1-1 debating in front of an online audience. Some of the debates are highly offensive, and many debates get very little traction taking dates to complete (if you are lucky that it doesn't get abandoned all together).
CreateDebate.com is also a well established online debating site. It offers a comprehensive profiling and polling system, and a large community. The quality of discussion is often lacking, and some of the content maybe highly offensive.
DebateIsland.com is the newer offering for online debating. It has a fast growing engaged community and an elegant debating and polling experience that is right-sized for casual debating. What also stands out for DebateIsland that it is the most mobile-friendly and seems to be the most civil in its discussions and content. It can benefit from more comprehensive user profiles.
I also researched other viable online debating options, that I ultimately don't recommend. These include:
1) comments of newspaper articles - please don't go there, and I still cannot believe how many online comments articles from popular newspapers get every day. These are not debates, but personal attacks.
2) Facebook, Twitter, etc - the reason people debate online is not to strain relationships with their friends and family. It is far from ideal to spam your tweeter and Facebook feeds with all of your debates.
3) Various smaller sites and apps - although some are interesting concepts and offer niche experiences for online debating, none of them have a civilized moderated environment with sufficient community that has critical mass to be useful.
I will argue that when Debate.org was originally established, it made a lot of sense. It still may make sense for a small sub set of serious professional debaters. Those days many folks logged in to their computers and wrote long essays to debate their opinions on important social issues.
However, this type of formal debating is outdated. More people are interested in more casual debating while they are on the go. We want to debate realtime when We commute on our iPhone or iPad. We will not have patience for waiting days for that one person to reply. Also the issue with abandoned debates after initial round is widespread and is highly frustrating. After you invest all that time and energy writing that long essay, you find out days later that the other person just ignored you and your debate is cancelled. Wow! Talking about feeling of frustration and rejection!
The user interface really needs some serious updating to make it more mobile friendly. It has a lot of helpful content, but on a mobile phone it is barely usable. There are so many things, debates, polls, forums. However, they are all separate. Debate.org should look to unify the experience. The forums section is pretty much comparable to comments in newspaper articles, and you don't want to go there.
The content is highly offensive or inappropriate in many cases. Please install a bot for moderating foul language and ensure that the moderator cleans up offensive material.
Finally, the 3 completed debate rule for voting rights is frustrating. Since most of the debates don't get any traction or get abandoned, the new users just end up being highly frustrated. The privileged class of users with voting rights can opine and vote on many thoughtful debates with little consideration - that make debaters feel like second class citizens. If you would like to debate half-baked comments from your voters then you are out of luck.
I suggest DebateIsland as my favorite. While it lacks some of the formal multi-round features and comprehensive profiles, I feel that its elegance of unified comments/debates/polling just works. The content is moderated and civility of its user base is a refreshing experience.
My second favorite is CreateDebate. It still has comprehensive user profiles and sophisticated voting, but doesn't limit you to 1-1 debating. I think it is better than Debate.org for most users who'd like more causal debating, but it is still too clunky and not as good as DebateIsland. I am also concerned about quality of content and vulgar language on that site.
I vote that there are better options than debate.org for mainstream debaters.
for more details of this debate, and counter-arguments, please refer to