Whether enabling voters to interview their President, or connect underwater in a project to photograph the ocean floor, Google+ Hangouts are being used in amazing ways. Not only do Hangouts have the ability to connect people on opposite sides of the planet, they can also connect people on opposing sides of the social and political spectrum. We’re delighted to announce that a new series of global debates, that will be live streamed on YouTube, will do exactly that.

Versus, from Intelligence2—an organization committed to revitalizing the art of live debate—will give you the chance to question people who are close to the decisions being made on topical issues, on both sides of the debate. Real-time voting on the channel will also let the speakers know how their arguments are resonating with viewers.



The first motion to be debated is “It’s time to end the War on Drugs.” The debate will air diverse opinions from the likes of +Richard Branson, +Russell Brand, +Julian Assange, and experts such as the former Presidents from Mexico and Brazil, among others. BBC newsreader and presenter +Emily Maitlis will chair the debate.

The debate will be streamed live on the Versus YouTube channel on March 13 at 7pm GMT. From now until then, we invite you to discuss the issues and join the debate on the Versus page, where you’ll also find out how you could have the chance to secure a place in the live debate hangout.

Anna Bateson, director of YouTube marketing, EMEA, recently watched "Richard Branson: No More Drug War (2011 International Drug Policy Reform Conference)."