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last modified November 15, 2013 by ejucovy

Election debates should be accountable to one constituency: the public.

In 2008, a non-partisan coalition called for U.S. Presidential primary and general election debates to be held according to the following principles:

  • Debate questions should be submitted and chosen by the people.
  • The public should be free to use, distribute and remix all debate footage.

In 2013, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee put these principles into effect, moderating an online Open Debate among the candidates running in the Democratic primary election for the Massachusetts 5th Congressional District.

This project aims to expand that successful experiment into other electoral races and build momentum until Open Debates are the norm for all public elections.


If you are new to the project, please head over to the introductions thread and introduce yourself. If you would like to read more about the Open Debate Coalition, check out the following stories and links:

  1. Take a tour of the application we built for the 2013 MA-5 Democratic Congressional primary debate:: http://opendebatequestions.com/ma5/q/
  2. Check out the original website for the Open Debate Coalition circa 2008: http://opendebatecoalition.com/
  3. Watch the debate we held in the MA-05 primary. It's the youtube video on this page: http://opendebatequestions.com/ma5/
  4. Read the original announcement from Craig Newmark from 2008: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/craig-newmark/open-debate-coalition-fre_b_129506.html
  5. See the 2013 article about the primary debate we held in MA-05: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/adam-green/new-era-of-open-debates-b_b_3710003.html