Here’s my question for the candidates in the CNN/YouTube Democrats’ debate:
I say I’m worried about the digital divide — between America and the world. The U.S. has fallen to 25th place in broadband penetration worldwide. Our broadband access costs, on average, 12 times more than Japan’s and 7 times more than South Koreas, yet Japan’s is 12 times faster than ours and Korea’s 9.5 times faster. So I ask the candidates: Will you pledge today to assure all Americans affordable — open — high-speed internet access and how will you do it? This is a necessity for our economy, education, culture, and future.
So Joe Biden is flagrantly violating MSNBC’s rules prohibiting internet use of the debate. He’s posting videos of himself and other candidates from the network at YouTube and, in turn, embedding them at his Head to Head virtual debate — which is exactly what MSNBC should be doing and allowing us to do (see my suggestions below). And, by the way, if MSNBC posted the clips on YouTube, they’d do a better technical job of it and their logo wouldn’t be all schmutzig. Will MSNBC go after Biden for stealing his own words and putting them on YouTube for us all to see? Watch this space:
Come on, NBC, do the right thing. Free the debates. Release them for our use under Creative Commons.
I sent email to Steve Capus, president of NBC News, yesterday and have heard nothing back yet. Here’s what I asked:
First, it was a pleasure meeting you on the RTNDA panel.
* Why did NBC News put a no-internet restriction on the debate video? What is the rationale?
* Would NBC News consider Prof. Lawrence Lessig’s call for the networks to make debate video available under an open Creative Commons License?
* I’d be grateful if you’d address the question of whether MSNBC owns this debate or whether it should be the property of the American citizenry in this election.
* Is the company going to demand that the clips that have been put up on video-sharing services be taken down and will it send cease-and-desist notices to bloggers who embed them?
I also asked Arianna Huffington what their policy will be with the HuffingtonPost/Yahoo/Slate online debates. She said they are deciding in a meeting on Friday and she’ll let us know immediately. I’m also asking the other networks what their policies will be.
Free the debates! Free the debates! Free the debates!
Here is my invitation to ask any candidate any question. Just record your question and upload it to YouTube (or use QuickCapture) and then tag it PrezConference (just as Biden’s campaign tagged his reply). That way, we’ll see which questions get answered and which don’t along with the answers. The tag makes it a conversation.
This is an important moment in the YouTube campaign. In the old days — yesterday — JD would have had to have run into the candidate at a random event somewhere in the country to have even a prayer of asking a question and that interaction would have been lost in the moment. But now, JD can ask iand the candidate can answer in front of all of us and he can answer for all to hear. So please do ask your questions. We deserve answers.