Candidates who aren't included on stage next week for the first Republican presidential primary debate have the option of participating in a less glamorous alternative, but about a week before the event takes place, no one knows exactly what that alternative is.

Debate House Fox is calling it a "forum," which will take place at 5 p.m. ET, four hours ahead of the primetime debate. Other than saying that it's open to the candidates who poll below 1 percent and that it will be moderated by Bill Hemmer and Martha MacCallum, Fox has released few other details.

A Fox spokesperson did not return a request for comment.

The forum was created as a consolation prize for the candidates who do not meet the standards to be included in the debate, which is reserved for those polling in the top 10 of an average of national polls. As of now, based on some polls, it looks like former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry and South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham are likely to be relegated to the forum, along with Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.

It's possible Fox's "forum" will be similar to a traditional presidential debate, with the candidates on stage at the same time, answering the same questions from the moderators.

That is similar to how CNN is managing the vast Republican field, which currently has 16 declared candidates. For its debate in September, CNN is dividing the time into two back-to-back segments. The first segment will feature candidates polling nationally outside the top 10. The second will only include the top 10.

Another option is for the candidates to take the stage separately, one at a time, for interviews with the moderators, like the candidates who participated in the annual Conservative Political Action Conference in 2015. In that venue, candidates were allotted time to give a speech and then participate in a Q&A with Fox News host Sean Hannity.

A third option could be for the candidates to sit in a type of roundtable forum. Republican pollster Frank Luntz held a similar event, which at some points turned emotional, during the 2012 GOP presidential primary.

Fox's debate and forum, whatever it ends up being, takes place on Aug. 6.