Not be outdone by British Prime Minister Gordon Brown‘s Number10 TV or Her Majesty’s Royal Channel (I highly encourage you to watch the video about the Swan Marker immediately), Barack Obama will be addressing the nation and the world in weekly online broadcasts.

It’s a continuation of his highly successful online video / YouTube strategy –  that over the course of the election led to over 110 million views – and a logical evolution for the Weekly Radio Addresses / Fireside Chats that have been around since Eisenhower

Here’s the President-Elect’s first from this past weekend:

A few comments: 

First of all, the Rule of Thirds does not apply to the President of the United States. 

Someone please tell that to Barack Obama’s DP. If I were a senator, I would have voted “Nay” on this guy’s appointment. I do not find my President more interesting, or myself more engaged in his message if his head is positioned slightly off center. Being off center is unbecoming of the most powerful person in the world.

He needs to be in the exact middle of the screen, inside a shot that’s just tight enough so we can all still see the American Flag pin on his notched lapel so that we don’t forget he’s patriotic. No wider. And this is not an A&E Biography nor an episode of Ze Frank. The plant, the books and the signed basketball (?) in the background have got to go. 

Second, YouTube needs to work on its recommendation engine. 

After Obama’s Address ended, the first two in-player videos that YouTube suggested were Jeopardy Theme Song – Nes Edition and FLCL-Swing the BatI have no idea why.

I wasn’t signed into YouTube at the time, so my viewing history didn’t have anything to do with the recommendations (and even if it did, I would’ve seen Kittens Riding Roombas, not terrible videogame footage).

I assume there will be no advertisements on Obama’s (or the White House’s future) YouTube channel, so horrribly misplaced ads probably won’t be an issue, but the site should think about what it suggests to watch next in order to avoid any embarrassing gaffes. 

Third, this is awesome. 

I barely knew The President’s Radio Address existed. Call me ignorant or uninformed, but I don’t think I’m alone here. This YouTube brodcast will obviously help remedy that problem. There will certainly be a lot of spin, but at least there’s more access to that spin, and a chance that more people will be interested and energized by that access to take action in politics, or at least become better informed.  


All those political sites that popped up over the last 18 months will have something to look forward to on a weekly basis. It’s no Sarah Palin, but at least it’s something.

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