The Consumerium Exchange
The Consumerium Exchange is where people can voice their opinion on which disputed article or campaign is closest to the truth at or over a certain period of time. All such opinions can change, so there is a need for ex-change, to help them evolve. This must happen quickly so that those who improve their practices are quickly rewarded, and to make it difficult to exploit a good reputation to do hidden harm - which is a common problem.
Thus, the purpose of The Consumerium Exchange is to provide a weighting or combined measurement for different opinions, which determines the default opinion shown to the consumer on each issue.
Current Approach on Development
There is ongoing research work into fulfilling this need as a Wiki under the working title Opinion Wiki.
Every person gets two votes on each issue:
Where issue is a disputed article or a campaign.
The dual voting (direct+indirect) system provides improved reliability and flexibility for The Consumerium Exchange at the same time. Due to the dual voting system the exchange is less susceptible to distortion. It is propably better left unknown how people value these different votes on each issue or in general because it provides the intrigue and safety of not-knowing
Counter measures against multivoting and vote buying should be meticulously evaluated. "The stock market" does this with bets - multiple votes and vote buying are easy, but expensive. A better solution may be out there, but if so, no one seems to have found it yet.
Evaluation of Results
The consumers opinion may be of various types, each with their own rules. For instance, an opinion of the use of a resource (like mahogany trees or mangrove trees) or a commodity (like cocoa) is different than an opinion of the process by which a product or service comes to the market, e.g. via a sweatshop or prison labour. An opinion of a company or country will also have its own rules. Each of these can be stated in a Consumerium Contract by which users accept obligations to meet the specific terms of the social contract that they expect all suppliers (to them) to follow.
Each consumer can override the view of a given interest group with her/his own preferences automatically or manually. One important preference is the slider to set how much weight direct and indirect votes get. Enabling automatic exclusion of votes based on preferences should also be possible.
Registered members are able to set scores (with comments) on each other extended-FOAF style (Friend Of A Friend/Foe). For instance one may track only foes, using only negative scores. This would be by far the best way to proceed - since groupthink sets in when any group confuses social capital with instruction.
Of course the consumer has to decide on a few organisations (minimum being one) s/he chooses to trust the most and the value of other participants is then relative to what organisations are saying about each other.
One could ask well why not full campaigns on other campaigners?
- The anwser being no, not campaigns, because it would lead to all sorts of conceptual unclarities, problems with infinite recursion and besides if party A has an view on party B that view is a private matter of Party A, not party C