Thursday, April 05, 2007

The cost of democracy for the YouTube Generation

Yesterday we wondered whether the Council would be brave enough to webcast more of their meetings. We think that they probably wouldn't be willing to do it simply because they're not the biggest fans of transparency.

Of course if they did consider it they probably wouldn't say that was the reason for rejecting it. We imagine they would be more likely to reject it on the grounds of cost even though it is actually relatively cheap when it is compared to the Council's total spend on publicity each year.

To take a starting system from Public-i, which would cover the leasing of hardware, full support, streaming and hosting costs would actually only cost them between £13,000 and £15,000 for the around 60 hours of webcasting each year.

That would, given the Council's habit of necessarily holding a full meeting each month, would easily cover the cost of letting us watch them. They would have to employ an operator for those 60 hours, but that could be pro-rata and would come in at next to nothing.

This would mean that councillors from the controlling group would be able to be watched by the public though. Given that they're apparently not allowed to speak to press it's unlikely an experiment in democracy for the YouTube Generation will ever come about.

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3 Comments:

Anonymous stevemilligan said...

Given the leadership aint a bunch of lookers, perhaps that's what they're afraid of?

9:59 am  
Anonymous Fred said...

I think they should do it and get themselves some airtime on the internet! But when do they go into purdah for the elections? No doubt little will get done while they stay stum.. Maybe the officials can get things moving while the coast is clear from political comment!

8:35 pm  
Blogger Indigo said...

How about petitioning the Council to webcast Council meetings - anyone else up for it?

What happens to petitions after they are presented - let me guess, they go into a black hole at the Council and disappear from history?

1:29 pm  

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