Kudos to the team at Lib Dem HQ for their smart use of Facebook Live video for Shirley Williams' speech on the referendum this morning.
Live video on Facebook is very new, but it's going to huge. It's the perfect platform for this kind of event; it's free, easy to use (you just need a mobile phone) and contrary to what so many people seem to think, you don't need to have a Facebook account to watch.
The video comes with a built in chat forum for viewers to discuss what they're watching and as well as live streaming the video, it gets automatically posted to your Facebook page afterwards and will be seen by many more people that way.
Perhaps most importantly, Facebook really wants live video to succeed, so they heavily bias their algorithm to show it to lots of people. During Shirley's speech the video hovered at around 400 live viewers. That might not seem like much, but if you did an event like that and 400 people showed up in person you'd be delighted. And of course, streaming in this way makes the event accessible to many people who could never attend in person.
The team deserve huge credit for moving so quickly to adopt this - it'll be interesting to see what else they choose to use it for.