President Obama will face and answer questions from YouTube interviewers Bethany Mota, Hank Green and GloZell Green in an interview on Thursday, Jan. 22 – two days after his State of the Union address. Google, owner of YouTube, disclosed that the president will answer questions regarding top issues that concern the audience most.
Since 2010, the U.S. president has turned to Google and YouTube after his State of the Union speech to answer the questions of the American people. President Obama has sat down with Google staff in the past for half-hour interviews or with users in Google+ Hangouts across the country. People asked the president questions through submissions to Google+ Hangouts or YouTube videos.
This year, however, will be more elaborate. For the first time, YouTube will bring people directly to the White House to talk with President Obama in person. It will be broadcast live on Jan. 22.
In the next few days, the creators will ask people to share their questions for the president, which then will perhaps be asked during the interview. Previously, people across the country asked the president questions about immigration, jobs and other issues during this interview.
On social media, they can use #YouTubeAsksObama for the questions they have in mind. The host for President Obama’s interview sessions, YouTube, gets millions of views every month on its videos. In the interviews, the three YouTube personalities – a professional nerd, a comedian who is married to an Army veteran and a teenage makeup expert, will sit down with the U.S. president for three separate interviews and bring with them questions collected from social media across the country. The target audience consists of social-minded mothers and “tweens” – young people who are between 10 to 15 years old.
The White House seems to be reaching out to a younger audience, maybe to at least help them care about the country’s issues as well as about politics. According to BuzzFeed, an official of Google shared that there are already potential questions from social media posts which President Obama will be asked when he faces YouTube interviewers after his State of the Union address next week. The official said they will not reveal the questions which will be asked by the hosts.
In the run-up to the president’s speech this Tuesday, people from the White House have already posted messages on social media. For instance, Senior Advisor Dan Pfeiffer posted several times, while aide Valerie Jarret posted to LinkedIn on Wednesday. On Tuesday, the president himself, gave an “exclusive” to Upworthy regarding broadband access.
People have already received some “spoilers” regarding this year’s State of the Union address, because the president has been on the road for weeks. Usually, he tours the country only after the speech. The U.S. administration intends to release smaller items of policy agenda throughout 2015. Two days before President Obama faces YouTube interviewers after his State of the Union address, YouTube will broadcast his speech, and the Republican address as well.
By Judith Aparri
Photo courtesy of President of the European Council– Flickr License