Will Networks Say Yes to N.O.?

By Chris Ariens 

With the Democratic primary still on, The NYObserver’s Felix Gillette looks ahead to the general election and the Google/YouTube presidential forum announced last month and planned for New Orleans Sept. 18.

If the candidates eventually agree to participate in the forum — which is no sure thing — will Google add a TV partner? “We’re looking at all sorts of options that include either forming a partnership with a network, or figuring out a way to independently produce it,” said [Google communications exec. Bob] Boorstin. In the latter case, Google would likely give away the feed for free to anyone who wants it.

When contacted recently by The Observer, one TV news executive said that any network, including his own, would jump at the opportunity to co-host the New Orleans debate with Google and Co. That said, he was skeptical that the candidates would ultimately agree to add another debate (with its heavy preparation time) to their jam-packed schedules.

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