Saturday, July 11, 2009

Accessing Obama in Ghana

On Saturday, Obama will give a major speech in Ghana and the White House has created a media resources page to make the message as accessible as possible. In preparation for the President's trip to Ghana, the White House is providing a well organized media sources page to allow all citizens a consolidated page of where to find the many media outlets that the White House will be using to broadcast Obama's speech. The media sources page created by the White House is "intended for use by individuals, organizations and social media users to access audio, video, and text files as well as code for use in blogs or other websites." The media sources page includes information on radio, SMS, Twitter, Facebook and links to images.
According to WhiteHouse.Gov: SMS - An SMS platform has been created to allow citizens to submit questions, comments and words of welcome. Using a local SMS short code in Ghana (1731) , Nigeria (32969) , South Africa (31958) and Kenya (5683), as well as a long code across the rest of the world, Africans and citizens worldwide are encouraged to text their messages to the President. SMS participants will also be able to subscribe to speech highlights in English and French. Long numbers for mobile registration pan-Africa are: 61418601934 and 45609910343. This SMS platform is not available in the US.
Twitter - The White House blog is trying to herd citizen discussion with a specific hashtag on Twitter, #obamaghana, limiting the displacement and confusion of Tweets and providing a more tangible Twitter platform to discuss Obama's trip.
Facebook - There is a Facebook event page for the visit to Ghana and the "White House Live" Facebook application streams video of selected events with real time discussion. The media source page will be updated along the trip, including: "Blog postings and highlights from the trip; Audio and Video files; Quotes From the Trip; Highlights From the Trip; Images From the Trip; SMS Message Subscription Service Information; Speech Transcripts."

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