Ring, ring! Screaming caller on line one

Get your vocal cords ready — you’re going to need them for a new website that lets you out-scream a stranger on political issues.

That’s the premise behind politicalscreamingmatch.com, where users are encouraged to “grab your phone and get your debate on.”

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The site poses a new topic each week (this week’s is “Romney’s Bain departure date”) and then sets up a phone call between folks with opposing viewpoints.

Pascal Rettig told NPR’s Bob Garfield he created the website because “I just wanted to see what would happen.”

While the site contends all calls are kept anonymous and visitors’ phone numbers are never shared, the politically charged gabfests are recorded.

The crème de la crème of calls are posted on Screaming Match’s blog. Rettig says he’s pretty surprised that he has yet to hear any “crazy” calls.

But potential debaters better keep any schoolyard taunts in check. The site says it’s “OK to be animated, but please — no threats or inappropriate name-calling (appropriate name-calling is fine).”

Rettig says although he has yet to hear any major declarations of peace among callers since launching the site a few weeks ago, opening up the dialogue has certainly stirred up the political conversation. “I haven’t — unfortunately — seen anyone’s worldview change, but I think I have seen people at least understand where the other person is coming from. There hasn’t necessarily been an agreement, but you know someone might say, ‘I understand coming from where you grew up or where you did this, why you feel that way.’ ”


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