Congress Debates Budget, Economy, Energy, Afghanistan, Education, Healthcare at YouTube Town Hall

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There is a new YouTube project called YouTube Town Hall, which has senators and representatives debating the hot issues. Google says the issues are the ones that are the most popular on Google News and Google search over the past year.

One interesting element is that it seeks to tear down party lines, by not positioning them as Democrat vs. Republican at the beginning, but by simply displaying two videos side by side and by having the user pick which one (if any) they support.

"How would you vote if you focused purely on the ideas needed to make our country and our world a better place, rather than on the parties putting them forward?" asks Will Houghteling of YouTube News and Politics. "That’s a question that the new YouTube Town Hall seeks to answer."

"After you watch the video, you’ll find out which party the representative comes from—and sometimes you might be surprised," he says.

The videos that attract the most support from users will be tracked on the YouTube Town Hall Leaderboard.

"You’ll also have the opportunity to ask the questions you want members of Congress to answer," said Houghteling."Every month, members of Congress will add new videos to the site answering a selection of the top-voted questions."

He suggests asking questions about lowering gas prices, reforming the tax system or making college more affordable.

It is really fascinating to see how far YouTube has come over the years from its days of mostly being known as a place to watch cat videos. While it's been progressing steadily for years, they seem to really be taking things up a notch this year, particularly as more homes get connected devices in their living room.

Now YouTube is presenting interactive debates with Congress, renting new release movies, and streaming big events live. Not to mention the fact that brands, news organizations, and citizen journalists alike all have an opportunity to get to consumers while they're sitting on their couches.

Chris Crum
Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.