Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Mayor’s Office Announces Second Virtual Town Hall Meeting

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer is hosting a second virtual town hall to take citizen’s questions via Facebook and Twitter.

In August, the mayor hosted an online assembly through social networking that received a heavy response. Like before, Fischer will be joined by city officials and agency directors who will help him answer questions and respond to concerns.

“We had a super response from people all over the city on many topics and city service issues at our last online session — there was a lot of energy out there. I enjoy hearing from citizens. If you have a suggestion, we want to hear it, and if you have a question — we’ll find the answer,” he says.

The online session is scheduled for December 5 beginning at 6 pm. Residents can connect with the mayor on Facebook or Twitter.

The online discussions are in addition to the mayor’s face-to-face meetings with residents called “Talk to Greg”, which are held throughout the city. The next physical town hall forum is scheduled for January 9 at a location to be announced.

State of the News

Unpopular Changes to Facebook & Netflix: State of the News

Massively unpopular changes to Facebook and Netflix were announced last week. Will the ill will last, or are people just resistant to change? On Friday, FastCompany‘s Neal Ungerleider joined us to explain the changes and the response:

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Local News Next Louisville Politics

Mayor’s Staff Expecting Lively Virtual Town Hall

Mayor Greg Fischer and a team of city officials will be on hand later this month for Metro Government’s first-ever virtual town hall.

The mayor’s “Talk to Greg” community meetings are typically held at schools across the city. But on the 15th, Fischer will invite Louisvillians to submit questions and comments to him on his Facebook and Twitter pages. The mayor and his staff will read and respond to the comments from 6 pm to 8 pm.

“Our goal is to respond to everything unless we’re totally slammed,” says spokesman Chris Poynter. “He will be there, the police chief, other key directors, the mayor’s senior staff will also be there. There will probably be 15-20 people in this room, but Greg will be answering as many directly and personally as he can.”

Earlier this year, dozens of Fischer’s critics took to Facebook to post negative comments about his decision to reject No Kill Louisville’s bid to take over Metro Animal Services. Fischer has also been criticized for posting overly-optimistic tweets during disasters.

Poynter says criticisms aside, Fischer’s online presence is a sign of the times. He expects more virtual town halls to be held in the future, and Fischer has previously announced plans to put more city information and services online.

“There are many things on many peoples’ minds and if you read the mayor’s Twitter feed or Facebook page it’s everything from concerns about the neighborhoods to concerns about Whiskey row to animal control to potholes. It’s really all over the board,” says Poynter.

Fischer does read and post to Facebook and Twitter himself, but other staff members also manage his accounts.

Poynter says the virtual town hall is an experiment, but it’s something the administration would like to do more of in the future.

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Fischer Plans Town Hall on Facebook, Twitter

Continuing to expand the city’s use of social media, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer has planned a virtual town hall meeting with citizens to answers questions and take suggestions via Facebook and Twitter. The online assembly is scheduled for August 15, beginning at 6p.m. and is being promoted as Fischer’s commitment to open, accessible government.

“Whether it’s at the grocery checkout, radio and TV call-ins or on Facebook, I really enjoy hearing what’s on people’s minds, how we can do better,” Fischer said in a news release. “There’s always a lot of energy on my Facebook and Twitter pages and we want to take that to an even higher level.”

While connecting with residents online to alert them about city announcements and his schedule has been an overall success, Fischer’s use of social networking has been a mixed bag of sort since taking office.

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Mayor’s Office Defends Disaster Tweets

In the midst of a massive water main break Monday, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer once again tweeted information that was more optimistic than accurate when he announced service would be back to normal by Tuesday morning.

Downtown employees and several businesses were still struggling to deal with the lack of adequate water pressure and possible contamination.

Last night, a 48-inch water main broke on the University of Louisville campus and Metro Government issued a water boil advisory in the central part of the city that is expected to remain in effect until 8 p.m. The mayor sent out alerts during the crisis through his official Twitter account that were re-posted by several new outlets—including WFPL— that told residents the situation would be cleared up the next day.

“Downtown companies and workers should have no issues tomorrow due to water main break,” Fischer wrote last night. “Service should be back to normal overnight.”

But Humana Inc. told 9,000 workers to stay home Tuesday and other downtown businesses either closed or were seriously affected by the poor water pressure.

Fischer spokesman Chris Poynter says the mayor received the information in real time from water company officials, but the situation changed overnight.

“The nature of social media is ever changing and you’ll notice that the minute that we learned this morning there were issues the mayor’s Facebook was updated before the media was to tell folks about Humana and other situations,” he says.

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Three Citizen Forums With Mayor Fischer Scheduled

The mayor’s office has announced the schedule and locations for three new upcoming meetings where residents can speak directly to Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer beginning later this month.

Dubbed “Talk to Greg”, the sessions are held on the second Monday of each month at different locations throughout the city, where Fischer is joined by staff, department directors and Metro Council members.

“I always enjoy hearing directly from citizens on what’s working, what’s not working and how we can do things better. Whether it’s a big idea for moving our entire city forward, or something that impacts your neighborhood, I’m ready to listen,” Fischer said in a news release.

From the mayor’s office:

July 11, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Jeffersontown High School, 9600 Old Six Mile Lane

September 12, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Valley High School, 10200 Dixie Highway

November 14, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Atherton High School, 3000 Dundee Rd.

The administration is also encouraging citizens to visit the mayor’s Facebook page or send him an email at

Local News

"Facebook Effect" Author Coming To Louisville

By Rick Howlett

The author of a new book about Facebook will be in Louisville this week to discuss his research into the social networking site and its extraordinary growth.

David Kirkpatrick is a former senior editor for Internet and technogy at Fortune magazine. The book is called The Facebook Effect: The Inside Story of the Company That Is Connecting the World.       Kirkpatrick says he had the full cooperation of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his key staff at the company’s California headquarters.

“I’ve worked as a business journlist for 25 years.   I’ve never had this kind of access on any story I’ve ever done before.   The book really, I think, reflects that–there are amazing stories in there that you read and think, ‘who the heck could have possibly told him that?’   These people don’t know what not to say because they’re only 25 years old,”   he said in an interview with WFPL last week.

Kirkpatrick will talk about his book Wednesday evening at the Louisville Free Public Library.     The event is free but tickets are required.

Our complete interview with Kirkpatrick is below.

Audio MP3

State of Affairs Blog

Lose a job to Facebook?

On August 19th State of Affairs will be discussing Employers, Privacy and Social Media. It’s a fancy title that simply means, did your pictures of you doing an upside down tequila shot at your favorite college bar cost you that great job at the accounting firm? Or you, what about those “private” pictures you posted on your blog for approved access only? Did you know your ex-boyfriend passed the access around and that’s why you are no longer teaching first grade?

Many of us have made the mistake of posting personal information in a not-so-personal space. State of Affairs wants to hear your story for our show on Tuesday, August 19th (11:00 am to 12:00 pm). Post it here, e-mail the show ( or give us a call during the program. Or if you dare, send us a link to your blog.