Meeting at the ABC

Yesterday we had a meeting at the ABC about their forthcoming show, Q&A – “Adventures in Democracy”. It brings a live studio audience together with politicians and gives ordinary people the opportunity to ask questions directly to their representatives. It sounds dry, but it definitely isn’t!

The first show is next Thursday (22nd May) at 9:30pm on ABC1 and streaming on the web.

They’re also developing a companion website and that’s where we find common ground between the aims of OpenAustralia and Q&A.

They showed us what they were doing and we showed them what we were doing. It turns out that part of their site allows users to enter their postcode which then tells them their representative. They can then find out things about their representative, their constituency, etc.. as well as enabling the sending questions through for the programme’s guests on the night.

We had a great discussion and it quickly became apparent how complementary what OpenAustralia and the Q&A folks are doing.

So, we talked about ways that they could use content from OpenAustralia on their website and how we could direct people at the ABC Q&A website.

This is all going to take a while to come to fruition. The ABC is a big organisation, that justifiably has very strict editorial policies about how they link to other websites. They want to be sure, for instance, that we’re not secretly backed by some political party (we’re definitely not!). It’s also very important that if we link to the ABC Q&A site that it is similarly impartial and perceived as such.

We’re just a few motivated people who have sacrificed a lot of our own time to build a totally non-partisan site that will inform. We believe that, whatever your political ideas, being better informed in a totally impartial way helps make the world more engaging, accountable and ultimately, more fun.

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