Slate beats up on Obama for moving a weekly radio address to YouTube, but we think this is pretty clever. As you’ve probably heard, the president-elect begins posting speeches to the nation today on the video-sharing site, turning what Reagan started on the radio in the 1980s into a multi-media opportunity.
Slate notes this won’t increase transparency — a speech after all is a carefully crafted reveal of what you want people to hear — but YouTube offers an unprecedented viral opportunity. After all, have you ever tuned in to a presidential radio address early on a Saturday morning? Didn’t think so. Most people prefer to watch Sponge Bob. But now we can look for presidential updates on YouTube, or Change.gov, when we feel like it. Liberal fans can embed the speech into their blogs, and conservative critics can do the same to throw rocks at it. Obama is pulling many online levers to get the message out; our personal favorite is this photo set on Flickr showing the behind-the-scenes tension on election night as Barack and his family waited for the election results.
Nicely played, Mr. President-Elect.