Precisely one year before Americans head to the polls to pick the next president, the eight Republican contenders vying to challenge President Barack Obama sat for a series of unprecedented, unedited web-exclusive interviews on ABCNews.com and Yahoo!
Never before attempted on such a scale -- and exclusively for the digital audience -- the back-to-back interviews streamed live from Florida, Texas, New Hampshire, Arizona, Illinois, South Carolina, and Washington.
A technical feat, the one-day event was also an editorial success -- the interviews were engaging, groundbreaking, and news-making.
Less than 24 hours after a third woman accused Herman Cain of sexual harassment, the GOP contender who once led the Republican pack directly denied the allegations in his live interview with Jonathan Karl, ABC News' Chief Political Correspondent.
Voters, political reporters and Washington insiders watched with bated breath as Cain told Karl, "I can categorically say I have never acted inappropriately with anyone, period."
"I reject all of those charges," Cain said as millions of people watched the live, web-only interview.
The 2012 election will be digitized – and through the power of our reporting and a transformative partnership with Yahoo!, we broke news in a tried and true manner but in a non-traditional format.
Stories break first on the web, blogs, mobile, and social – in a world in which anyone can report, the challenge for news organizations is to differentiate our distinctive reporting and delivery.
In this unique effort, we were everywhere the audience is consuming news -- ABC News gave voice to voters, soliciting questions via Twitter, Facebook, and through interactive ballots on the massively popular Yahoo! front page.
Cain's denials were the coup de gras from a news perspective but the real win was in experimenting with a novel and innovative approach that took what could have been a traditional series of candidate interviews and maximized our digital reality.