We're excited to announce the launch of 10Questions.com , a new kind of online presidential forum, one that aims to make the most of what the internet has to offer to politics.
On 10Questions.com anyone will be able to directly pose video questions to the candidates for President and choose which ones they most want answered. Candidates will be able answer in detail and without the time limits imposed by traditional televised or on-stage debates. And citizens in turn will be able to give the candidates feedback on whether they actually answer those questions. Call it the crowd-sourcing of presidential debates.
The Huffington Post and OffTheBus are co-sponsors of 10Questions, along with an amazing array of more than 40 co-sponsors. (Click here to see the whole list.)
10Questions is a great opportunity for anyone who wants to hasten the end of the age of soundbite TV politics and start the era of community conversation. If you're like us, you're pretty tired of old-fashioned televised debates. Only a few people get to ask questions. The candidates have very little time to answer, forcing them to speak in canned sound bites. The audience has no way of providing meaningful feedback. If the candidate doesn't answer the questions, we have no way of pushing them to do so.
10Questions turns all that upside-down, and puts voters in the driver's seat.
Here's how it works: the sponsors of 10Questions are asking their millions of readers and the larger public to submit online video questions addressed to the candidates using a variety of platforms (YouTube, MySpace, Yahoo, and Blip.tv), tagging their video with the word "10Questions." The 10Questions site will then find and display those questions and enable the public to vote up or down on these submissions. At the end of four weeks, on November 14, we'll stop the voting and after a quick audit to check against ballot-stuffing, the top ten vote-getting questions will be submitted to all the major candidates.
The candidates will then have four weeks, from November 17 to December 15, to submit answers to be posted online. As those responses are posted, the public will be given the opportunity to vote again, up or down, on whether the candidates have answered the questions to their satisfaction. Users can vote on as many videos as they like, but they only get one vote per IP address. The process will end December 31.
Is this going to work? That's really up to us. So, get going!
If you make a video, let us here at Huffington Post know. We'll try to point some attention at your work. And go to www.10questions.com to vote on the videos from everyone else. This is your chance to change the debate.