Friday, January 15, 2010

School board Webcast makes its debut

6-month pilot approved for live meeting Internet broadcasts

Express Staff Writer

School board Trustee Paul Bates, left, and videographer Gary Stivers teamed up Wednesday evening to provide a live Internet broadcast of a Blaine County School District public hearing. At Bates’ urging, the school board Tuesday approved a six-month pilot program for live meeting Webcasts.

People unable to attend Blaine County School District public meetings can now tune in live via the Internet.

A broadcast Wednesday was the first live Webcast of a Blaine County school board meeting. Bates, who conceived the idea, got approval from his fellow board members on Tuesday for a pilot program and had the operation up and running for Wednesday's public hearing.

"I've gotten some real nice feedback on it," school board Trustee Paul Bates said. "There were some audio problems and some video problems part way through it, but I think we can work out the bugs."

The video remains available for viewing at the district Web site at

Bates said that as of noon Thursday, the video had about 60 hits.

"We're on board for a six-month pilot program with the primary focus being on regular board meetings," Bates said.

He said Wednesday evening's Webcast cost the district about $200.

"I feel that given the response that we've gotten, that it's pretty cheap outreach and pretty cheap documentation for permanent archiving," he said.

Terry Smith:

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