Teachtoday webcast "How to hold debates fairly on the internet" now available online

For young people, the digital world has long been part of everyday life, where discussions are at least as intense as in analog life. But instead of an appreciative exchange at eye level, things can quickly become hurtful and insulting online. Teachtoday has talked to young people and experts about how debates can be hold fairly online and has drawn up rules. The webcast is now available online free of charge.

Teachtoday moderator Khadra Sufi

Teachtoday moderator Khadra Sufi © Telekom/Teachtoday

When opposing opinions clash in conversations, things can quickly become emotional and insulting - especially in the digital world. Studies show that nearly all young people have already experienced hate speech and unobjective comments online. Many of them report that they feel intimidate and they no longer dare to express their opinions freely. It´s a loss for our democratic coexistence, their voice on the internet is missing.

New Teachtoday webcast now online 

Why is it so difficult for us to put up with someone who has a different opinion? How can we live together respectfully on the internet? How can young people in particular be empowered to engage in fair exchange, online and offline? 

Teachtoday's webcast "How to hold debates fairly on the internet" provides answers (available in German). It took place as part of this year's Digitaltag. It is now available free of charge online at and via the Teachtoday YouTube channel. Teachtoday is Deutsche Telekom's initiative to promote safe and competent media use.

Debating not about, but with young people

In addition to Michael Hagspihl, Senior Vice President Global Strategic Projects & Marketing Partnerships at Telekom, who makes clear in his welcoming speech how important media literacy and democracy competence are to Telekom, Mareike Fell also has a say at the event. She is a communications scientist, coach and mind architect. In a conversation with Teachtoday moderator Khadra Sufi, she explains why we communicate the way we do and what is different on the internet than in analog life. An important tip from her for a fair debate: separate the person from the issue! Listen to the webcast and learn how this can be done and what the yes-hypnosis has to do with it. 

In order to talk not about, but with young people, four experts in the field of debating were also invited. Lilli, Theresa, Justin and Gregor have participated this year in the national competition of "Jugend debattiert" in Saxony-Anhalt. Every year, the initiative trains around 200,000 students to collect and state arguments, present criticism, take a stand - in short: to debate. In the webcast, the four young people took the participants into debating sessions. Debates were held on the current topics “TikTok and Instagram from the age of 12?” and “Cancel Culture vs. freedom of speech”. 

Find out how the discussions went, what results the young people and participants came to, and what rules they derived for debating in the webcast. 

You can find even more information on the topic in Teachtoday's current topic dossier "Debates on the internet".

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