The Science Behind BestWorld

Restoring News Readers can Trust

BestWorld is reimagining both traditional and social media-based news. Our goal: a scalable demonstration of a news ecosystem that is truthful, believable, impactful, beneficial, and widely multilingual — and from the technical standpoint, immediately scalable worldwide. We plan to take this experiment live with a small group of users by the end of May, 2024.

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BestWorld News

Top 10 Research Findings Supporting BestWorld

#1

Improved Accountability Through Tournament Participation

“Drawing on the literature about the effects of accountability, the authors suggest that tournaments may hold even greater potential as tools for depolarizing political debates and resolving policy disputes.” Learn More

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#2

Reduced Polarization With Forecasters

“In a two-year forecasting tournament, participants who actively engaged in predicting US domestic events were less polarized in their policy preferences than were non-forecasters. Self-reported political attitudes were more moderate among those who forecasted than those who did not. We also found evidence that forecasters attributed more moderate political attitudes to the opposing side.”

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#3

Four Traits of a Super Forecaster

We find support for four mutually reinforcing explanations of superforecaster performance: (a) cognitive abilities and styles, (b) task-specific skills, (c) motivation and commitment, and (d) enriched environments. These findings suggest that superforecasters are partly discovered and partly created.”

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#4

Forecasting Rationales Among Top Forecasters

“(a) top forecasters show higher dialectical complexity in their rationales and use more comparison classes; (b) experimental interventions, like training and teaming, that boost accuracy also influence NLP profiles of rationales, nudging them in a “super forecaster” direction.”

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#5

Open-minded Thinkers and Accurate Forecasting

“Actively open-minded thinkers are more likely than others to make accurate forecasts.”

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#6

Open-minded Thinking and Gaining Knowledge

“In three studies, participants made estimates and predictions of uncertain quantities, with varying levels of control over the amount of information they could collect before estimating. Only AOT [open-minded thinking] predicted performance. This relationship was mediated by information acquisition: AOT predicted the tendency to collect information, and information acquisition predicted performance.”

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#7

Opening Closed Minds with Tournaments

“Tournaments have the potential to open closed minds and increase assertion-to-evidence ratios in polarized scientific and policy debates.”

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#8

Accuracy of Prompts and Partisanship

"[After evaluating] “a single neutral (nonpolitical, non-COVID-19) headline… [these] accuracy prompts had a significant positive effect on sharing discernment for Republicans/conservatives …We also found that accuracy prompts had a significant positive effect on sharing discernment for Democrats/liberals.”

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#9

Adversarial Collaborations and Scholarship

"Each collaborator serves as a check on their adversary to confirm that the hypotheses are falsifiable, the scientific tests are fair, and the interpretations accurately characterize the findings. Because adversarial collaborations restrict scholars’ abilities to rig methods in favor of their own hypothesis and to dismiss unexpected results, adversarial collaborations are likely to advance debates faster and generate more reliable knowledge than traditional approaches."

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#10

Transforming Science with Adversarial Collaboration

“(a) The ideological homogeneity of the social sciences has entrenched certain scientific orthodoxies and taboos; (b) these orthodoxies and taboos have protected weak ideas from rigorous scrutiny.”

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Sources

[1] “Bringing probability judgments into policy debates via forecasting tournaments,” Philip E. Tetlock, Barbara A. Mellers and J. Peter Scoblic. SCIENCE 3 Feb 2017 Vol 355, Issue 6324 pp. 481-483. DOI: 10.1126/science.aal31
[2] “Forecasting tournaments, epistemic humility and attitude depolarization,” Barbara Mellers, Phil Tetlock and Hal Arkes, Cognition Volume 188, July 2019, Pages 19-26. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cognition.2018.10.021
[3] “Identifying and Cultivating Superforecasters as a Method of Improving Probabilistic Predictions,” Barbara Mellers, Eric Stone, Terry Murray, Angela Minster, Nick Rohrbaugh, Michael Bishop, Eva Chen, Joshua Baker, Yuan Hou, Michael Horowitz, Lyle Ungar, and Philip Tetlock. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 2015, Vol. 10(3) 267­–281. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1745691615577
[4] “What do forecasting rationales reveal about thinking patterns of top geopolitical forecasters?” Christopher W. Karvetski, Carolyn Meinel, Daniel T. Maxwell, Yunzi Lu, Barbara A. Mellers, Philip E. Tetlock. International Journal of Forecasting, Volume 38, Issue 2, April–June 2022, Pages 688-704. DOI: ttps://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijforecast.2021.09.003
[5] “The role of actively open-minded thinking in information acquisition, accuracy, and calibration,” Uriel Haran, Ilana Ritov and Barbara A. Mellers. Judgment and Decision Making , Volume 8 , Issue 3 , May 2013 , pp. 188 – 201 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/S1930297500005921
[6] “The Role of Actively Open-Minded Thinking in Information Acquisition, Accuracy, and Calibration,” Uriel Haran, Ilana Ritov, and Barbara A. Mellers. May 2013Judgment and Decision Making 8(3):188-201, DOI: 10.1017/S1930297500005921
[7] “Forecasting Tournaments: Tools for Increasing Transparency and Improving the Quality of Debate,” Philip E. Tetlock, Barbara A. Mellers, Nick Rohrbaugh, and Eva Chen. Current Directions in Psychological Science, Volume 23, Issue 4 https://doi.org/10.1177/0963721414534257
[8] “On the Efficacy of Accuracy Prompts Across Partisan Lines: An Adversarial Collaboration,” Cameron Martel, Steve Rathje, Cory J. Clark, Gordon Pennycook, Jay J. Van Bavel, David G. Rand, and Sander van der Linden. https://www.psychologicalscience.org. First published online March 20, 2024. https://doi.org/10.1177/09567976241232905
[9] Adversarial Collaboration Project https://web.sas.upenn.edu/adcollabproject/
[10] “Adversarial Collaboration: The Next Science Reform,” Cory Clark and Philip E. Tetlock, a chapter in the book Political Bias in Psychology: Nature, Scope, and Solutions. C. L. Frisby, R. E. Redding, W. T. O’Donohue, & S. O. Lilienfeld (Eds.), New York: Springer 2022. 
DOI: 10.1007/978-3-031-29148-7_32

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