It is time for the City of Sioux Falls to stream meetings on YouTube

What has often baffled me about Mayor TenHaken being this supposed tech geek is that he hasn’t embraced the simplest of technologies, that are ironically free. Cities across the nation have been using the FREE service of YouTube to stream their meetings (and keep a FREE record of them) for a long time. The South Dakota cities of Rapid City and Mitchell use the service. Locally the Minnehaha County Commission and the Sioux Falls School Board use it. Even the City of Sioux Falls has it’s own channel but only posts a handful of CityLink propaganda shows and a few press conferences preferring to stream only on Facebook (which you have to subscribe to).

Besides the fact that there is NO subscription required to watch the meetings on YouTube and the service is essentially FREE to the city and taxpayers, it helps with access and transparency. Also, increasingly, the service the city uses to stream official city council meetings, SIRE, is failing us, it has for over a decade and it is getting worse and worse. Last week only half of the informational was streamed live in SIRE and there was another meeting where only audio was working (I think it was the planning meeting).

Is YouTube perfect? No. But it has a good track record and seems to work just fine for thousands of other local governments across the country.

I told someone that the city has probably chosen to NOT use YouTube streaming because they can’t waste money on it and it wasn’t one of their new fangled ideas. In fact the former mayor had the media department purge hundreds of YouTube videos on their site before he left office. To this day we don’t know why.

But the real reason this mayor and his administration refuse to do this is because THEY HATE TRANSPARENCY AND OPEN GOVERNMENT.

Bottling up all that Hate Paul isn’t good for you . . . or us.


#1 D@ily Spin on 12.16.20 at 7:48 pm

I seriously doubt the city would use YouTube. It’s a permanent record that can be used against them. The city business plan is to look legal but amend so there’s no future evidence.

#2 Fear & Loathing in Sioux Falls on 12.17.20 at 12:55 am

Like the movie ‘the Truman Show’, cameras should be on ThuneHaken at all times, even when he’s in his garage talking to his ‘Big Mouth Billy Bass’.

Such an approach for Nietzert, however, might get boring. A guy can only watch sock drawer organizing for so long.

#3 Cameraman Bruce on 12.17.20 at 8:41 am

Our “modern” politicians don’t like to have anyone collect their empty thoughts and actions to be studied later. There is a simple way to follow the local governments and local politicos, subscribe to my YouTube channel

I have archived and re-posted about 5,000 local government videos on YouTube and Facebook because the previous mayor of Sioux Falls found it inconvenient to have his words repeated back to him when he hugged a child predator or some other embarrassment. I was not able to save everything he did, but we were able to save a lot of it.

Our current mayor does not use YouTube but prefers to use Facebook to spread his whining. I have saved every video he has posted and re-posted it for historians to use. The authoritarians now running the city of Sioux Falls have decided to find another way to stop me from downloading their propaganda, put it behind a subscription wall, as if our public information is private for the club members.

I don’t subscribe to, use or read Facebook. I have had to find a legal way around the blocks they have instituted to prevent my work.

The public record is not the personal property of the latest thin-skinned authoritarian to be placed into office to be doled out to their subscribers.

Sioux Falls must have a rethink of the form of government we want and need and the only way we will be able to make the changes necessary is to have the evidence of the actions so far committed.

Subscribe to, watch the videos and read the transcripts located at and read because an informed electorate is a proactive electorate.

#4 Mike Lee Zitterich on 12.17.20 at 11:44 am

Do you have a copy of the March 2013 Mayors Learning and Listening Session I hosted at the Moose Lodge?

A forum that had over 80 people in attendance, and hot topics such as the Event Center, the new Shape Place’s Ordinance, Walmart, and many other lessor concerned topics.

That forum was perhaps one of the largest attended Mike Huether’s Learning and Listening Sessions, and I used to find it on youtube, but it appears to have been removed.

By chance have you ever saved a copy?

– Mike Zitterich

#5 "Very Stable Genius" on 12.17.20 at 2:50 pm

Thank you Bruce and Scott for what you do to enhance transparency in this town.

But with that said, we need to keep in mind that the city is run by Republicans; a political party that no longer believes in democracy. From here on out, they are the authoritarian party and not the more conservative party.

#6 Cameraman Bruce on 12.18.20 at 7:43 am

Mike, what’s his name, the former guy in charge decided if someone did not like his performance the videos were deleted. This is why I started to archive what i could find. Your meeting appears to be another lost to history. Authoritarians do not like history unless they can rewrite every day or tweeted

#7 Mike Lee Zitterich on 12.18.20 at 11:24 am

Bruce, that was one hell of a meeting; We had not only the Mayor, but Public Works Director, Planning Director, a few other directors and officers that day….

If I recall, the #1 Topic was the Shape Place Ordinance Agenda that was to be passed soon after; while many residents were concerned with Walmart and the Event Center.

If we could ever find that video, which will be hard..

My dad, whom was an officer of the Moose Lodge – asked the Mayor if the City would like to buy the building, at the time the building was up for sale..They could have had more parking for the Event Center, but the mayor said NO.

Then ‘WE” placed the Mayor on the hotspot – we opened up the building for an entire 1-2 hours after the “show” was aired …

If I recall – Future City Councilor Christine Erickson was in attendence …

#8 Cameraman Bruce on 12.19.20 at 6:38 am

Mike Lee Zitterich, you should file a FOIA request with the city for a copy of the video. Very likely the meeting video is buried on a server or backup device somewhere.