Today you can pull in President Elect Barack Obama's chat via YouTube (think Fireside Chat). Recorded as the weekly Democrat radio address yesterday, once it airs today on radio, it will be available on Obama's transition site, change.gov. He's coming straight to you. Whenever you want to pay attention to him and pull in his message.
Are you empowered to get his communications directly?
"The Obama team has written the playbook on how to use YouTube for political campaigns. Not only have they achieved impressive mass -- uploading over 1800 videos that have been viewed over 110 million times total -- but they've also used video to cultivate a sense of community amongst supporters," said Steve Grove, head of news and politics at YouTube.
This is perfect communications for our post-literate society, the leader going straight to you. The graphic, left, used for Rock the Vote, hearkens to creation stories of the Hopi, Zuni and other Native Americans whose myths speak of emergence from an inner world. I've written about the Obama logo and how the symbol, like the Nike brand, needs no words. The symbols are as much a part of the message as text, if not more. But there is something more. Obama is redefining the sense of belonging to a community, or at least he has tapped into the bowling alone isolation of our culture.
Getting unfiltered communications, even if only one-way, upsets our media system of spokespeople and pundits. Obama went straight to Facebook, straight to Twitter, straight to people who want to belong, want to be part of something, want to interact directly as part of a community. Lonlieness isn't healthy and facebook friends are not deep affiliations. Bowling alone is lonely, you know. The Secret Service calls Obama Renegade (his wife is Renaissance, and their daughters Rosebud and Radiance). W. Bush was called Trailblazer.
How we get our information in order to be informed citizens so we can uphold our democracy will be interesting. Obama is on the cutting edge, coming directly to you. But it is more than that. There is a cultural and sociological need to be part of something beyond oneself. Obama is an avenue of connection.