The U.S. President and the White House have officially engaged the active community of social networking. With the recent outbreak of the swine flu across the nation and the world, the White House has seen fit to not only release a statement, but to also keep you updated via Facebook and Twitter to let you know about any developments.
There is now a blog on the website that will give you updates and news developments on whatever the topic of the day is for the White House and for the country. And what else is on the main site? Links to the White House’s new social networking scene, to include links to Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube, iTunes, and something new that I’ve never heard of called Vimeo. Seems to me that the White House has tapped into what all of the popular kids are doing and they are doing it too.
Although I do frequent quite a few of the same social scenes that the White House does, I actually see a lot of activity from the President’s staff quite a bit on Facebook. There are often news flashes, words of thanks and upcoming events announcements often penned directly from the President’s desk. All of this is sometimes accompanied with photos, YouTube videos and even outside links. It’s as if the White House is operating as a for-profit business rather than a government entity. They seem to be utilizing the same platform and delivery methods that a for-profit entity would. Yes, social networking is hot right now at the White House!
What’s the harm in mixing social networking with politics? Maybe perhaps people won’t take the issues as seriously as they would if the government WERE NOT socially networking? But, is it really that big of a deal though?
Who exactly is social media for? For-profit corporations? Social entrepreneurs or small business owners? Who in fact should be on these social sites and should they have a purpose? The President has created an image for himself as the socially-savvy President, so he does have a reputation to uphold. But, is it a little too much, too common, too over-the-top for a political entity? I think some of us feel better, a little more at ease when the government doesn’t try and be our friend and mix with us so freely. Accurate or not? Why?
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