The Guardian, Telegraph and Youtube bidding to have a leaders debate to be held online

Is an interactive Online Leaders debate for 2015 a good idea ?

  • Don't Know/Don't Care

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Not going to watch any of the Leaders debate.

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    6

krish

Distinguished Member
As long as it's simulcast with TV then it's fine ... but I doubt the aim to "enable the party leaders to speak directly to younger voters, and provide a more interactive way of communicating rather than the traditional television formats" will come to much - if they're not interested in it in general, they're hardly going to flock to it online ... it will still be us, news and politics junkies, though most likely still watching on our big TVs whilst possibly tweeting/commenting online
 

Pisto_Grih

Distinguished Member
Sadly they'll probably need an iPhone app with a virtual red buzzer/clap-o-meter, if they want to target the "yoof"
 

tapzilla2k

Distinguished Member
With a Shark Tank underneath ? All Kidding aside, the only way to get the yoof engaged in politics is by lowering the voting age to 16 and have a non biased course that enables them to understand the electoral system leading upto voting in a General Election. Given we have fixed term Parliaments now that should be easy enough to do. Though some will not like that idea I know.
 

pragmatic

Distinguished Member
Any questions will be either selected by a lottery or the media or the politicians. One will be a whole mass of pointless and probably illiterate questions, two will be media bias and three will be easy ones for them to answer or bash the opposition with.

I think ferrets in a bag approach would be best, we'd see behind the mask then and some hard questions asked. Only problem is they will probably avoid questions that they as a group want to avoid, which has gotten us into the UKIP situation in the first place ...

No solution is perfect without some sort of mind dump hologram we can all question personally.
 

hdsport

Well-known Member
As long as it's simulcast with TV then it's fine

I wonder if that would defeat part of the object of the debates. The TV companies have to comply with regulations re. impartiality, equal time etc. are they able to get round those rules if they are merely simulcasting an online broadcast?

The way this could differentiate itself would be with a more free-form format where the moderator could stick with a leader if they feel they are avoiding the question etc. without having to stick to time limits etc.

I do also wonder would the party leaders want to subject themselves to this sort of debate and it may end up either being 'just another debate' or kill the whole lot stone dead so we end up with no debates at all.
 
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tapzilla2k

Distinguished Member
I wonder if that would defeat part of the object of the debates. The TV companies have to comply with regulations re. impartiality, equal time etc. are they able to get round those rules if they are merely simulcasting an online broadcast?

If they are simulcasting an online broadcast that they have no control or input over then the rules probably don't apply. Impartiality rules only apply to traditional broadcasting methods I think at the moment, need to do some checking on that when I have the time.

The way this could differentiate itself would be with a more free-form format where the moderator could stick with a leader if they feel they are avoiding the question etc. without having to stick to time limits etc.

Well it won't be constrained by a TV schedule so they can pretty much set whatever time limit on questions and answers they like. I think the real game changer would be if they let people ask questions to the leaders via a google hangout or Skype live and then be able to respond to the politician aka you become the moderator for a short time. Though also gather questions from social media leading into the debate so they can have some element of control over the proceedings when they want to switch things up a bit.

I do also wonder would the party leaders want to subject themselves to this sort of debate and it may end up either being 'just another debate' or kill the whole lot stone dead so we end up with no debates at all.

I'm sure Cameron would prefer it if he had no debates to contend with given how badly he can perform under pressure in the commons. Ed Miliband has nothing to lose by taking part in the debates pretty much as Nick Clegg had nothing to lose in the last round of debates. Plus if they refuse to take part in an internet based debate where they are directly connected to the voters, it might come off as them looking out of touch and scared. So I think in the end they'll have to take part if they like it or not.

Or we could have a debate where Ed Miliband, Nick Clegg, The Green Party leader (forget them name) and Farage show up but Cameron does not. What you don't want is this debate to be similar to Question Time where the audience asks the questions and then the politicians lead everyone up the garden path so they don't actually answer any questions and all you get is spin which the non politicians pick up on and attack them over.
 

hdsport

Well-known Member
Well it won't be constrained by a TV schedule so they can pretty much set whatever time limit on questions and answers they like. I think the real game changer would be if they let people ask questions to the leaders via a google hangout or Skype live and then be able to respond to the politician aka you become the moderator for a short time. Though also gather questions from social media leading into the debate so they can have some element of control over the proceedings when they want to switch things up a bit.

The problem I foresee is not so much the scheduling issue but getting the leaders to agree to allow flexibility in the rules in the first place, rather than the standard X amount of time for the question Y for a rebuttal etc.

I know it's fictional but if they can persuade them to have a West Wing style debate (Santos v Vinick) where the moderator can use their judgement we might see something more interesting rather than a lot of set piece answers (no matter what the question was). Assuming it doesn't just descend into a shouting match.

I also agree letting people ask some questions and pursue an answer would be a good thing I remember 2005 when there weren't debates but a Question Time special with the leaders in turn. Seeing Blair being literally made to sweat by the audience was a memorable moment. This would take it to the next level.
 

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