YouTube and CNN virtualize presidential debates

Just shy of 3,000 people submitted video questions to YouTube for the Democratic presidential debate last night in Charleston, SC. The collaboration between CNN and YouTube marked the first virtual city hall event of its type.

Politicians and hopefuls have stumped on the "Broadcast Yourself" website, but they've not been drilled by the likes of Caroline McTeer, a high school senior from Hampton County, SC, who asked the candidates how they did on their last standardized test. Another, a Mr. "Spoon," who submitted his query on the Primary Season Web cam in Portsmouth, NH ask candidates how they would wean the country off of coal. Other posters demonstrated remarkable creativity, such as the YouTuber dressed in a chicken suit asking candidates to donate their campaign funds to the homeless.

On a more litigatory note, YouTube parent corporation Google is gearing up for a $1 billion copyright infringement lawsuit brought against it by Viacom. A hearing to establish the trial schedule is slated for July 27.

For more:
- The New York Times run-up is here
- a piece in the San Jose Mercury News exemplifying the randomness of YouTube is here (reg. req.)
- a little nail-spitting betwixt the ViaGoo moguls at the annual Sun Valley, Idaho, cigarfest is covered here