President elect Obama will bring the President's weekly "fireside chat" into the 21st century by offering it not just on the radio, but in video on YouTube as well. It's as if the new populist President really cares whether the next generation has a connection to what he's doing. That's where the people are - on YouTube, on MySpace and on Facebook.
More people will watch the President's talks than ever before, and they will post video responses. That's pretty remarkable.
The Washington Post covered Obama's plans this morning and reported that a number of other officials in the administration will be posting regular videos as well. We found the story via some light coverage at CNet.
Is This For Real?
Some people are already saying that posting to YouTube is just the strategy of the week for pandering to young people. They point out that Obama's account on Twitter, almost the most popular account on the service, has been dead silent since the election ended.
Posting to YouTube is different though. It's repurposing media, cross posting it, it's simple. The Obama campaign has already posted almost 2000 videos to its YouTube account. The administration should use a cross-posting video publishing tool like TubeMogul to publish everywhere. The weekly talks should be live broadcast on UStream and archived in high def on Hulu. That's not crazy talk, that's all relatively simple and obvious. Video experts could probably come up with even more effective plans.
It's hard to know if the political policies of the next administration will be radically different from the last one, but at the very least the technology of the Presidency should be more contemporary and relevant than has ever been the case before.