How does it work?
Terms and conditions
What is Hivemind?
HiveMind is Scoop’s home for citizen engagement on issues that matter to our community. HiveMind uses Pol.is - an
online tool for collecting open-ended feedback from large groups of people.
Through a HiveMind exploration you can voice your opinion about a story or issue, and can also agree and disagree with
what others are saying, one statement at a time. New statements go through a moderation process by our team and then are
added so that participants can vote on them.
Pol.is runs statistical analysis on these voting patterns in real-time. It produces opinion groups and surfaces the
comments that brought each group together. It also identifies comments that found broad consensus among participants.
What is Pol.is?
Pol.is is a USA based company which provides the software used for this engagement. By logging in to the discussion you
are creating a Pol.is account and agreeing to their terms and conditions and privacy.
Pol.is also agrees not to share your information with any third parties. However if you choose to login to a Pol.is
debate using a social media account (Twitter or Facebook) then your social media account will be visible to the extent
that it would be if viewed by an ordinary user logged into that Social network. If you want to create a Pol.is account,
you may want to change the security settings on your social media account to a more restrictive setting.
Why is Scoop doing this?
The news media is a vital part of our democratic system and Scoop promotes openness, inclusion, participation,
empowerment, and the common pursuit of truth and the public interest. Scoop has decided to trial HiveMind to demonstrate
that members of the public can engage productively with public issues and the news. Scoop will review what emerges
through Hivemind and look to incorporate findings into its stories or further research investigations. While the
comments sections of many news websites produce lots of heat, they create little insight. HiveMind aims to produce this
much needed insight and in doing so empower citizens to participate in their communities and to shape the political and
Adding your own statements
- You can add your own statements for other people to vote on
- You need to formulate your view or understanding as a statement, not as a question
- Questions don’t work because questions don’t generally invite an agree, disagree or pass/unsure response
Why add your own statements
- None of the statements you have seen match your view or understanding
- An aspect of the issue is not being addressed
- You have different reasons for your view than those given by other statements
- You can see a different angle on the issue, especially one that might get support with people in different groups.
Social Media Login
- If you log in, the graphic will display your Facebook/Twitter image and also those of other logged in participants
- If a user clicks your image, they will be directed to your public Facebook/Twitter profile
Social media login:
- enables notifications
- makes it is possible to do further analysis using demographic information from your profile
- provides some protection from automated spamming
Terms and Conditions
Terms for using HiveMind
If you add a statement, you must not:
- use swear words or offensive language
- post statements or images or links to materials (including via your social media account) that are unlawful,
libellous, harassing, defamatory, abusive, threatening, harmful, obscene, profane, sexually oriented or racially
- post statements or images that are likely to offend or that target any ethnic, racial or religious group
- post the same statement, or very similar statements, more than once ('spamming')
- post statements that are clearly off topic, are trolling or are too long
- impersonate someone else or an organisation
- post protected content copied from elsewhere
- advertise products or services
- post photos or videos of people without their prior consent
How will we use harvested information?
Scoop Publishing Limited reserves the right to utilise the data gained from our HiveMind Pol.is discussions under the
following terms and conditions.
- You can use HiveMind anonymously but if you login using a social media account that account will be visible in
HiveMind to all other users.
- We will run each exploration for at least 3 weeks.
- We will aim to invite a mix of experts, Scoop readers and interested networks to take part in each exploration.
- We will report on the findings from each HiveMind project using Pol.is reporting functions.
- Our objective will be to identify consensus information as well as strongly held views
- One objective will be to provide consensus views or circuit breaker ideas to decision makers as part of a media role
in supporting citizen involvement in public policy
- We will not identify individuals by name in our reports unless approved by the individual.
- Personal information of users social media profiles will not be seen or shared with any other third party.
- This data may be used to inform further research or stories on Scoop or to otherwise advocate for changes to policy
or actions based on the opinions presented.
To view current HiveMind explorations go to our homepage here
Scoop reserves the right to decide not to post a statement or to remove a statement if Scoop decides the statement:
- breaks any one of the Terms (eg is potentially offensive or defamatory)
- is very similar to statements that have already been submitted (Pol.is works better when statements are distinctly
Complaints and queries
If you believe that the Terms have been broken or if you have a query about the use of Pol.is by Scoop, please contact
Scoop’s Engagement Manager, Joe Cederwall: firstname.lastname@example.org.