Panels just make sense to me. From day one I imagined astronauts landing on Mars and using a panel discussion throughout the mission to keep the public informed of the latest going ons.
How exciting would that be? I imagine the stars, literally, every time I think of panels. They present an incredible opportunity and platform for people's and group's voices to be heard in a unique way.
But panels are like a double-edged magic-wand (good on both ends). They also help solve bullying and trolling problems on the internet.
For me, it was how incredibly noisy the internet has become, especially over the 2016 election cycle. Cutting through all the garbage posts, lies and memes and trying to find a discussion about actual election issues was nearly impossible. It made me hate logging onto Facebook and Twitter and the like.
The amount of trolling and bullying is astounding these days and it was just turned up to 11 during the election. It cut out all the people who wanted to have a reasonable discussion. And not only that, those platforms also forced stories in front of you that you had no way of avoiding, other than avoiding the platform altogether.
Having a Panel now gives us a chance to find people who are willing to have a public debate or discussion without worrying about an audience of trolls and bots spamming and bullying the participants.
The great thing is that panels aren't only limited to a group of people with similar ideas who want to have a safe discussion. They also give you the opportunity to have an interesting debate with people who have different opinions than you.
They do this by allowing the conversation owner to control the invite list. So you only invite people who are willing to have a mature discussion, even if you want to hear and absorb different points of view.
I'm really excited to see what future panels we get to see on Cake. I'm sure they will almost all be more interesting than this one, but hey, we have to start somewhere!