Tonight, from 7 to 9 p.m., Santa Barbara residents are invited to experience a truly 21st Century political debate when candidates for Santa Barbara City Council take part in “The People’s Forum,” a live, interactive event that will be video streaming from a studio over the internet and onto computer screens everywhere. The direct link for tonight’s debate will be independent.com/debate, and that page currently features a how-to video for signing up and participating in the event.
This is all-access, nonpartisan, participatory democracy at its purest, as citizens watch online and those who log in for free will be able to ask questions directly to the candidates via a chat board. It’s a perfect debate for those too busy to make it to a forum in-person, and perhaps the only chance for everyday Santa Barbarans to ask direct questions of those vying to become the city’s next leaders.
Already confirmed for the debate are: Dale Francisco, Cathy Murillo, Michael Self, Sebastian Aldana, and Iya Falcone. If more candidates confirm their involvement, we will add their names to this list.
The event will be powered by California Streamin’, a Santa Barbara-based live internet streaming company, which has invited all of the candidates and received confirmations from a majority of them, and is co-sponsored by the Citizens Planning Association. The forum moderator is Catherine Remak, the popular morning DJ at KLITE, and the chat room moderator will be Matt Kettmann, senior editor at The Santa Barbara Independent, which is the media partner for the debate.
The live video can be viewed on CaliforniaStreamin.com and Independent.com starting at 7 p.m. To participate on the chat board, visit either website starting at 6:30 p.m. on October 19 for instuctions on how to log in.
The forum will be using Ustream.tv to run the chat board, so those interested in participating can create a free Ustream account here. And for those who would like an email or text message reminder about the debate on Wednesday afternoon, you can sign up for a special Indy Alert here.