Thursday, August 21, 2008

C-SPAN Goes High Tech for Convention Coverage

Politics is not the focus on this blog but it is the season which comes around every four years when politics invades everything we do and so it is with my blogging. And with the Democratic National Convention being held in Denver next week it is hard to not want to be a part of the excitement. Actually, I am a political and news junkie.

I have been a fan of C-SPAN and Brian Lamb for 5 or 6 years after discovering BookTV one lazy Saturday afternoon when I was looking for something to watch as I settled down for a winter nap. I started noticing how the news coverage of what happened on the Hill was strikingly different than what actually transpired during debate or how sound bites could be used out of context to bolster any position. So I became intrigued with getting my information first hand.

My impression is that C-SPAN is always willing to take advantage of new technology. The first I heard about the new XM-To Go portable was on some C-SPAN program when Brian Lamb was announcing the roll-out of C-SPAN radio. Their coverage of the party conventions confirms what I always believed.

When I posted a twitter message about watching the Saddleback Presidential forum on C-SPAN I received a message inviting me to watch the coverage on the C-SPAN Convention Hub. I'm hooked!

From Techcrunch:

But today C-SPAN gets fairly cool with the launch of two new sites dedicated to the upcoming Democratic Convention in Denver and Republican Convention in Minneapolis. ...links for DNC08 and RNC08. Both are similarly formatted sites that incorporate citizen journalism via blogs, Twitter, YouTube and Qik into portals to cover convention and related news. They will complement the existing C-SPAN Politics.

Third party blog content from sites like Huffington Post, Instapundit, Gateway Pundit, RedState, etc. will be incorporated into the site and Twitter messages marked with hash marks #RNC08 or #DNC08 will also appear on the site (with moderation). C-SPAN employees will be given Qik cameras to record the action when not on main camera.

All in all, it’s a great effort to spice up coverage with user-generated, up-to-the-minute content. This may not make the cable channel more watchable, but political nuts will definitely want to bookmark the sites. It may have the most up to date news on the conventions.


Lucinda said...

Thanks for posting this info, Joni. I too am a news junkie and this looks like a good place to get a fix... BTW - I was interested in your take on the Obama/Biden ticket but the tinyurl you posted gives an error - perhaps you could fix that?

thanks! -sf

Joni said...

Thanks for telling me about the tinyurl. I am just getting the hang of twittering! The url goes to my page on

I was pretty psyched when C-SPAN picked up on my blog and this post shows up on their Texas convention blog page.

So far I have tried to stay away from politics on this site - business and all that, but it's hard when the DNC is in town and I want to be a part of our political process.