Such a tool could be used for totally open discussions where everyone is welcome to take part. Another way is to connect it to a smaller group, like a citizen panel, or as a way to continue a discussion after a focus group meeting. The discussion can be conducted entirely text-based or including sound and image according to focus and aim. It is important to consider if the forum should be open to everyone or closed and connected to a limited group, like a citizen panel. By rendering contributions featuring sound and image possible, you support people with difficulties in expressing themselves in writing. Someone must assume the role of moderator and regularly control the comment so nothing unsuitable comes through. (One alternative could be to have direct publishing during office hours and for the additional time publish received contributions the next morning after a quick review.) The discussion is held independent of time and space and many have opportunity to take part. Current issues are often debated fast and the discussion is transparent, everyone can see all contributions. This method requires that the participants have access to a computer connected to the Internet. It also requires watching by a moderator whose work effort depends on the activities of the forum. (SALAR)
The dialogue is important in all types communication and there are several methods and tools. One good advice is to meet people where they are and not to expect them to come to you.