Clarksville, TN – Citizens tuning into last month’s Clarksville City Council meeting online likely noticed a number of issues with the live stream, including but not limited to increased latency and an absence of on-screen vote tallies.
Recently, a lightning strike damaged key equipment in City Council chambers, causing technical difficulties. Approximately 40 devices across Parks and Recreation, The Professional Integrity Unit, and Council Chambers were impacted.
The damaged equipment included 23 computers, four copiers, two cameras, three switches, two encoders, an access point, a TV, a printer, a phone, and a monitor.
IT staff has worked throughout the last month and replaced 24 damaged devices. Other equipment has been sent off for repairs.
“Our team is in the process of repairing and replacing the damaged equipment, as well as upgrading some of our systems to prevent future issues,” said Amie Wilson, the City’s Chief Information Officer. “We understand that citizens’ access to City Council proceedings is extremely important, especially around election times, and we are working hard in IT to provide the best access possible.”
While captioning encoders are being repaired, the City is employing a cloud-based service for closed captioning on the city website, and Facebook captions are being handled by the platform.
Vote tallies are expected to again be displayed on the live stream beginning with the next regular session.
City Council stream moving to YouTube
As part of its plan to improve digital access to City Council meetings, live streams will move from Facebook Live to YouTube on October 27th.
“We’re aware there have been a number of issues with our current platform throughout recent meetings. The switch to a new platform will allow us not only to address these issues but to improve the live-streaming experience for our citizens who might not be able to make it out for in-person meetings,” said Williams.
Prior to switching platforms, the City will provide notice at City Council meetings and via social media. A link to the City’s YouTube channel will be shared on Facebook prior to every meeting’s start.
Live streams will also remain available on the city’s website.
“Switching platforms is a big change for some residents, and we want to make sure that they are well informed and don’t miss out on anything. We’ll be making multiple announcements before going live on a new platform,” Williams added.
To receive alerts when the City goes live, visit the channel, and hit the “subscribe” button as well as the bell icon to turn on notifications.