Wednesday, April 11, 2012
iReport roundtable: Special debate edition

Please join us here in the blog at 2:30 p.m. ET on Thursday for our weekly roundtable discussion. We will be talking about the iReport Debate – an invitation for you to let the decision-makers know what issues matter to you most in the coming election. Your issues will help CNN in its coverage of the election!

 

In the run-up to November, the iReport Debate will unfold in three main stages: One, name your issue. Two, debate it out. And three, make people listen.

 

To get started, the first step is to post an iReport explaining why you are so passionate about your top issue. The producers who are working on the project will be here to give you all the details and to answer any questions you have.

 

We will open comments on Thursday at 2:30 p.m. ET to start the discussion. If you have any other iReport questions you can email them to me at david.williams@cnn.com.

 

We look forward to talking with you soon.

116 Comments
April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

Anyone there?

 

April 12, 2012
Click to view k3vsDad's profile

Good afternoon everyone.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

Hello Dad and anyone else here

April 12, 2012
Click to view davidw's profile

Hi everyone and welcome to the iReport roundtable. Today we are going to be talking about the iReport debate, which will give you a chance to tell decision makers about the issues that are most important to you.

 

April 12, 2012
Click to view ChrisMorrow's profile

Hello Hello from another sunny day in San Diego! :) Looking forward to the roundtable.

April 12, 2012
Click to view k3vsDad's profile

Not yet, it doesn't look like, mpgarr59.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

Hello David

April 12, 2012
Click to view k3vsDad's profile

Hey david and Chris. Yep, just uploading my 3rd vid on the subject, david.

April 12, 2012

Hi David and everyone! David my blood is boiling for politics! Bring it on!

April 12, 2012
Click to view Logan248's profile

Hi, everyone.

April 12, 2012
Click to view wjoreilly's profile

Hello all from Wilkes-Barre, PA.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

kind of a lag on here from the time you type to the time they appear--got to remember that

 

April 12, 2012
Click to view davidw's profile

Let me start by explaining how the roundtable works, for any new people who are reading this.

If you have any questions or comments, go ahead and post them here in the comments.

We will answer them as closely to in order as we can.

 

Scroll down the page to follow the discussion, and you may have to refresh you browser occasionally.

April 12, 2012
Click to view Logan248's profile

I'd like to know with all the fraud going on during elections how anyone can expect the best person to win? And I'm talking on both sides!

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

are you going to refer back to the posts from last night, David?--I pretty well laid out two issues of concern there that I have

April 12, 2012

David I don't understand what you want to know.

April 12, 2012
Click to view davidw's profile

iReport producer Christina Zdanowicz (or zdan) is heading up the iReport Debate project and she'll be with us in just a second.

 

April 12, 2012

David I would like more coverage of voter suppression that's going on across the nation.

April 12, 2012
Click to view k3vsDad's profile

It's a great assignment from my perspective.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

I will briefly mention my two issuesone is campaign financenamely the effect that the latest and worst decision of the courts that was Citizens United and also Rebuilding our nation's infrastructure.

April 12, 2012

David for instance. Early voting is even being cut short in some states.

April 12, 2012
Click to view katie's profile

Hi all! I just wanted to jump in and say hello! Thanks to everyone who's participated in the iReport Debate assignment so far. The responses have been great!

April 12, 2012
Click to view davidw's profile

Part one of the assignment is to share the issue that is the most important to you this election season and to explain why you're so passionate about it.

 

April 12, 2012
Click to view wjoreilly's profile

hi, david--if i catch your drift i think we should find a way for ireporters to go head to head on specific issues

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

I do agree--that the new rules being implemented are clearly restricting the ability of many to vote, which to me is yet one more "manufactured" problem that one element had to come up with a reason to justify "the fix"

April 12, 2012
Click to view davidw's profile

You can post your issue here in this iReport http://ireport.cnn.com/topics/773030

 

April 12, 2012
Click to view k3vsDad's profile

Hey, katie, I find it a great assignment.

April 12, 2012
Click to view katie's profile

@mpgarr59 Campaign finance is a good one! You should submit your issue as an iReport here: http://ireport.cnn.com/topics/773030

 

This assignment is where we'll take stock of all the issues that people have nominated and then later allow the community to vote on which ones matter most.

April 12, 2012
Click to view Cross88's profile

Hello everyone, and good afternoon :) 

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

Hello Katie

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

Hey everyone, I'm one of the producers leading the project. We're so excited to get our debate on!

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

Hello newcomers and zdan too

April 12, 2012

Goodbye

April 12, 2012
Click to view katie's profile

@wjoreilly You're one step ahead of us! iReporters going head-to-head on the issues is the next step of the debate. That will kick off next month. Right now, we're inviting everyone to share and vote on the top issues of the election season and then the debates will begin!

April 12, 2012
Click to view k3vsDad's profile

Hey zdan...just uploaded my 3rd or it's being uploaded on the iReport debate assignment.

April 12, 2012
Click to view Logan248's profile

For one thing the economy stinks and no one seems to care. If we're broke then all the other issues are moot.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

As I said---my two issues were how we can overturn the effects of the SCTOUS' Citizens United ruling and to urge what would be a Marshall Plan like program to do a complete rebuild of all aspects of our infrastructure system

April 12, 2012
Click to view Logan248's profile

I posted one about how I felt Romney could not win. I got a lot of response!

April 12, 2012
Click to view wjoreilly's profile

got it, katie.

 

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

Thanks so much, ksvsDad! We've gotten so many submissions, we're trying to get a handle on them all. Economy is definitely a popular one among the community, which brings to an interesting point.

 

@everyone - Even if you see your issue already submitted by another iReporter, that doesn't mean you should change your topic. The whole point is to see how many of each one we get!

April 12, 2012
Click to view Logan248's profile

mpgarr59, good idea.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

Logan-The thing with trying to make any sort of prognostication about who will win in November at this pointin political termsthat might as well be 500 years into the futureso many things will come into play between now and November to affect the outcome-about the only thing that is for sure-its going to be a nasty election season

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

@mogarr59 - Your issues sound solid and they haven't been represented much on our site. Care to upload it as an iReport (text or video) here? http://ireport.cnn.com/topics/773030

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

sorry about my posts looking funky  I have a habit of typing in slashes between sentence segments and that causes this program to do weird things!!

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

Ok zdan, will get to that when I can. Do I need to just basically replicate what I did on the original blog or have to do it in more detail?

April 12, 2012

#1 issue. Who is best suited to create an environment that will allow the economy to begin to recover.

April 12, 2012

And yes I am late. And will not be here long either.

April 12, 2012
Click to view k3vsDad's profile

Something just went screwy with the site. I just edited my latest iReport for the iReport debate and now can't get anywhere keeps saying error.

 

April 12, 2012
Click to view Sighhhhhhhhh's profile

This roundtable discussion should really be on a national television and radio, allowing to arrive at some broad consenus on why real causes of American social problems are actively avoided. I blame media and intellectuals for this active avoidance because their own vested-interests are involved--fame, fortune and voice domination. I believe the real root cause of American social problems is one thing and one thing only, Insatiable Greed.

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

@mpgarr59 -- You have a lot more space in the iReport, so as long as it's within 4,000 characters, feel free to write however much you want to get your issue across. Alternatively, we're also encouraging folks to upload videos explaining their top issue. Either way, just upload it via the assignment as opposed to commenting on the blog.

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

Hi everyone!

 

@zdan--I wanted to contribute to the Trayvon Martin iReports.  I got your email yesterday.  I am having serious computer issues right now and unable to edit or upload right now.  I am leaving Saturday for NAB/BEA conference and won't be back until late Wednesday night.  I will upload any celeb pics I get from the conference via my iphone. 

April 12, 2012
Click to view DShieldsTx's profile

#1 issue in getting through and ready for elections Nationwide and Community wide is learning how to do so in 'Peace Mode' ...Passionate debate is admired, Debate with Hate is a bad look on the person doing so.

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

@Sighhhhhhhhh - I like the way you think about having iReport chats televised. And welcome to the discussion.

April 12, 2012

DShieldsTx - Tell that to the Republicans and Democrats.

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

The iReport Debate is actually happening in three stages as we approach November. We're in step one now: Name your top issue and tell us why it matters to you in the coming election. The next steps, are where iReporters craft the future discussions. I'll explain those next, if there aren't any questions.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

thanks, zdan, I will do that later when I have more time.  Right now other than my smartphone I don't have any video capability but very soon I am getting a really great HD cam so I can do community access programs and such so for now I will just write it out

April 12, 2012
Click to view Logan248's profile

I just downloaded one on the economy issue.

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

@zdan Should we look at iReporters videos and comment directly towards them for the debate?

 

April 12, 2012
Click to view DShieldsTx's profile

@PCHater01 Well I surely hope the point gets across to everyone...I remember one my favorite Debate class in College in Austin, Tx was the one where we were crazy diverse, yet we all got our points across without Hate for the person making the point in our tone...it is a skill, not many own it...

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

@MelissaF - Thanks for the heads up

@DShieldsTx - Nice to see you in the discussion!

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

I really do wish that there would be some sort of effort that via TV networks like CNN, etc, major universites and such, we would begin to have a series of very serious debates on critical issues such as this and actually have some real substantive hashing out of fundamental issues instead of one side or another spinning them

April 12, 2012

DShieldsTx - agreed and the worst ones are the politicians themselves.

April 12, 2012
Click to view Sevenfold747's profile

We would love to participate in the debate but we cannot tape a video. It this is only way to get our opinion out there instead of the written word? It seems like videos are vetted more. Thank you!

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

@MelissaF - Very good question! You just predicted the second phase of the project. We will have iReporters squaring off in part two, which will come in a month or so.

April 12, 2012
Click to view davidw's profile

Hi Sevenfold 747

You can share your issue as a text-only iReport, but we do prefer video.

It doesn't have to be fancy, you can record your video from your phone (or a friend's phone), you computer's webcam if it has one, or even a lot of digital cameras.

 

 

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

@zdan...that's my favorite part...squaring off..

 

;)

April 12, 2012
Click to view Sevenfold747's profile

@zdan: We are new to iReport (Feb. 2012) and we are trying to show our varied opinion. We were shocked (and happy!) that our "He Is Risen" piece got almost 4,500 views. We're not sure how but we're very thankful. We enjoy viewing and reading other iReporters' work! Do you have any tips on how to get our views out to a broader audience? Thank you, 7.

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

After we've collected your iReports with your top issues, you will help us rank the top 20 issues so we can narrow it down to just a handful of topics. Those topics will be where the debating begins!

April 12, 2012
Click to view Sevenfold747's profile

Thank you, Davidw. We will try using our webcam that we just purchased. I think it'll make a big difference.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

how long will accepting those sorts of videos going to remain open?

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

@MelissaF - I am a debate nut too -- you're looking at a high school policy debate nerd.

April 12, 2012
Click to view davidw's profile

@mpgarr59 -- We don't know the exact cutoff date yet, but we're going to need them in by the end of April.

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

Once we get down to the handful of issues and after the one-on-one debates, we're taking it to the most exciting phase. Anyone care to guess what's next?

April 12, 2012
Click to view Cross88's profile

Hilary Rosens comments were right on the mark in my own opinion. Jay Carney made no real attempt to address this issue, and stumbled a lot. Michelle Oboma had the nerve to address this issue through a tweet, and this issue wasn't even aimed at her and yet she manages to chime in. Ann Romney has every right to defend herself when remarks like that are aimed at her, but I was very surprised about her husband not jumping in on this issue...   

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

thanks Davidw  Don't think I will have my new video cam coming from B&H by then  Guess I will just go get a webcam since the one on my laptop is busted along with the onboard screen

April 12, 2012
Click to view davidw's profile

We are making it a lot easier to file iReports directly from your webcam. We've rolled out a new widget that lets you record your video and post it to iReport from CNN.com stories.

We've been testing it for a couple of weeks, but you're going to see it in more and more stories from now on.

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

@zdan...On debate team in high school too!!  yeah!!

 

Venture guess...live debate on CNN?

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

Wished I get the cam soon, to go out and shoot plenty of footage of bridges and such that people drive over every day that since I know their condition, I cross myself ever time I go over them, especially the Brent Spence I-75 bridge over the Ohio River in Cincinnati. That's the one the Obama made a speech under last fall. That thing is in bad shape, I know, I have a boat and I go under that bridge all the time, it looks bad, scary!!

April 12, 2012
Click to view k3vsDad's profile

davidw sent you a PM.

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

@MelissaF - Good guess! It does involve something exciting, just think more about the issues. When you have an issue, you want people to hear it, right?

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

The folks in Louisville need to kinda wonder what is up with the Markland Lock and Dam on the Ohio near Vevay, Ind Last summer the Army Corp of Engineers did a rehab project on it and word has it that they have found in serious danger of having a critical failure due to bad concrete and some problems with erosion of the base of the dam If it failed, look out anyone downriver like Louisville Ky the damn holds back 89 miles of the ohio river to a controlled depth of 23 feet Lots of water to go rushing down Some have tried to get the Corps to say what is up with the dam, the last I know they are still being mum

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

Yeah....and...????

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

@zdan..Obama or Romney???

April 12, 2012
Click to view DShieldsTx's profile

@zdan Thank you!!!

@PCHater01 I would have to agree based on fact they stand in position of leadership, which places one in position of required example...

April 12, 2012
Click to view Cross88's profile

MelissaF - Neither candidate is worth it in my opinion.. 

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

@cross88..yeah but that's exciting to be heard!!!

 

April 12, 2012
Click to view DShieldsTx's profile

@davidw I want more info on that widget, I'm on HTC Sensation when out and about, I'm one who needs things in form of 'easy as possible' :-)

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

I am sorta concerned that things like dams and bridges being iffy is not a sexy issue that most people don't think about or simply ignore but it does have so much to do with economic prosperity, growth, etc

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

We'll try to get your issues to the candidates, their advisors and other decision-makers! And by your issues, I literally mean some of your video submissions being presented to the people that matter.

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

@zdan...ding ding ding ding...do I get a prize?  lol ;)

April 12, 2012
Click to view Cross88's profile

MelissaF - It be more exciting if Sarah Palin was in the running's. She makes a better candidate then Romney or Obama put together.

April 12, 2012
Click to view ChrisMorrow's profile

Great roundtable! :)

April 12, 2012
Click to view davidw's profile

The widget doesn't work on mobile devices at this time. It's on CNN.com stories you can access from the website. Here's a link where you can find apps for your mobile device.

http://www.cnn.com/mobile/index.landing.html

 

I've got to run to another meeting.

Thanks everyone.

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

YAYYY @MelissaF! The prize is the first group of people to hear the news.

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

@Cross88...put an iReport up and I would definitely debate that one...Sarah is a nice lady with good intentions, but so not qualified to be Commander in Chief!

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

@ChrisMorrow - I agree! I'm having a lot of fun with this chat and I hope that translates to people being pumped about the iReport Debate.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

For ways to the "average person" to be part of solving the problems we face, go Google the named Carne Ross.  He has a new book on how ways he suggests that "regular people" can and should take things into their own hands.

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

@zdan...count me in..this is going to be FUN!

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

I am glad as well to see this effort. Thanks guys! Got to start someplace

April 12, 2012
Click to view JannetWalsh's profile

Hi!  I just arrived!

Murdock, Minn.

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

Gotta go..have tech support on the phone 

 

Love and gratitude!!!

April 12, 2012
Click to view k3vsDad's profile

Sent a PM to you as well zdan.

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

Ok guys, I've got to wrap it up and edit a story that the team is working on. Anyone have any final questions?

April 12, 2012
Click to view Cross88's profile

MelissaF - Sarah Palin is qualified to be the commander and chief. And I admire that she is a member if the NRA as well, but sometimes i feel she likes being in the lime light way to much.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

Guess I can try doing a vid with the phone as well. Probably will have pretty poor video quality though!!!

April 12, 2012
Click to view MelissaF's profile

@Cross88..that's an under statement...lol  ;)

April 12, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

Thank you for the wonderful discussion! The roundtable is now over, but for those of you who will be reading this later on, we've left the comments open.

 

Feel free to post any questions about the iReport Debate and we'll answer them in due time. You can find out more about the project in our intro here: http://ireport.cnn.com/blogs/ireport-blog/2012/04/09/ireport-debate-launch-tell-us-what-matters

 

Or, if you're ready to upload your video or text about your top issue, you can do so here: http://ireport.cnn.com/topics/773030

April 12, 2012
Click to view Cross88's profile

MelissaF - Matter of opinion of course, but I still feel she would make a great leader if given the chance.

April 12, 2012
Click to view Niena's profile

Hi David,

I downloaded the music that you have provided..But, all of them are not supported in wmv.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

Cross, don't get into trying to support one person or another for office. There are very different perspectives on that and do so here only plays into making real discussion hard. Suffice to say, I am not a Sarah Palin fan by any stretch of the imagination, but I respect your right to like her if you respect my right to not like her.

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

no zdan  Thanks, it was great. Keep up the good work.

April 12, 2012
Click to view Niena's profile

what I meant was the music provided on CNN iReport

April 12, 2012
Click to view Cross88's profile

mpgarr59 - Far enough..lol

April 12, 2012
Click to view mpgarr59's profile

Thanks Cross. I am sure that you don't want to know who I am "For" and why, nor would you want to know my reasons for not thinking Sarah Palin should ever be president, but when anyone gets into that area, all that happens is that it invites such things and the all you have is a shouting match of sorts between people lining up for and against their person and that is the kind of thing we need to get past if we are going to get Americans pulling together once again "on the team" so we can get to work to fix what is wrong. Otherwise all we do is perpetuate our divisions and we get distracted from doing the real hard work that needs to be done. One thing I am fully becoming convinced of, "We The People" need to stop looking to people like Obama or Palin as some sort of saviors and the ones to "fix things" I am convinced they don't know what to do or they are corrupted and don't care or they just play their role in the system that as long as they have the office they don't care about anything else

April 12, 2012
Click to view Cross88's profile

mpgarr59 - Saviors you say, can't say I would ever agree to seeing either of them as that. They would have to do something pretty big in order to convince me of that, even though I know that's not what you meant. What bothers me right now his which candidate at present will address the Korean issue at hand. (a change in pace)  

April 13, 2012
Click to view zdan's profile

@Niena - Thanks for the question on music. My best idea for now would be to open up the music file in iTunes. From there, you can right click and convert the file to an mp3, which should work with any software. Hope that helps!

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