The TVNZ 7 Internet Debate

One of the little projects I have had a bit to do with is helping arrange a partnership between TVNZ7 and InternetNZ for the 2008 Internet Election Debate.

InternetNZ ran an online debate on ICT issues in 2005 between some of the party spokespersons (including Labour and National). It was webcast, and allowed remote participation through an IRC channel, e-mailed questions etc. It worked well, with both the politicians and the audience enjoying the somewhat unconventional format which allowed more time for actual debate and detail.

As ICT issues such as broadband, fibre rollout, wireless, digital copyright have become far more prominent in the last year ro two, we thought there would be enough interest in the debate to look at having it televised also. And TVNZ7 were the natural partner with their focus on news and current affairs. So we were delighted when they showed not just interest but enthusiasm.

We’ve also got a great range of journalists for the debate. Sean Plunkett has agreed to be the overall moderator. Fran O’Sullivan and Russell Brown will fire questions from the media bench and we will also have an online moderator who will filter questions through from the online and viewing audience.

The debate is on Tuesday 23 September starting at 9.10 pm. The first hour is live on TVNZ7. The second hour will be webcast (as will be the first hour) live and also available through TVNZ On Demand.

The four MPs are Labour’s Minister of Communications Hon David Cunliffe, National ICT Spokesperson Hon Maurice Williamson, ACT Leader Rodney Hide and Greens ICT Spokesperson Metiria Turei.

The whole idea of the debate is it will be a two way communication, not just one way. So if you are interested in faster broadband, digital copyright, Internet Safety etc etc tune in on the night. You can also ask questions in advance on Geekzone.