The CNN YouTube Debates are asking the public to submit videos with questions for the candidates during the primary debates.
The videos will be made available on YouTube, allowing users to embed them in their blogs and social websites.
Voters will elect a replacement for George W Bush on 4 November 2008. The primary debates pitch candidates from one party against each other.
Following a set of local elections by registered party members, the Democrats and Republicans will nominate their candidates in late August and early September respectively.
The first CNN YouTube Debate featuring Democrat candidates is scheduled for 23 July.
The 2004 elections were the first to establish social websites as a political weapon. Backers of Democrat candidate John Kerry used Meetup.com to organise support rallies and fundraisers. The public platform did not help Kerry win the final election.
Eager to take over Meetup's early success, social websites and other online services are already courting candidates to use their service to reach out to voters. YouTube opened a special You Choose '08 channel in March.
Most of the leading candidates also have created profiles on MySpace, where the number of 'friends' is used to indicate their popularity among young voters.
The web has also become a prime source of news about candidates and their missteps.
Republican George Allen's 2006 loss of his seat in the Senate was blamed in part on his referring to a coloured person at a political event as a "Macaca".
The term is associated with a species of monkey and was used pejoratively by colonialists in Central Africa to indicate the local population. A video of the incident received wide media attention after it was posted on the web.
A YouTube video that linked Democrat Hillary Clinton to Apple's famous 1984 television advertisement has also been widely discussed.
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