In addition to the 48 million viewers watching the President’s State of the Union speech on TV last week, there was also nearly 1.3 million people who tuned into the WhiteHouse.gov’s live video feed of the speech. A good chunk (1 terabyte’s worth) of those viewers accessed the speech via their iPhones. You read that right. The White House has an iPhone app! The president is now on twitter, youtube, facebook and even flickr. The iPhone app provides access to full videos from recent speeches, press briefings, and special events. According to the commercial above, you can even watch press briefings. Don’t have an iPhone? According to the Huffington Post, you won’t be waiting much longer before you can access all this stuff on your mobile device.
This is the first step in the White House’s mobile strategy, according to the White House’s new media department, led by Macon Phillips, a veteran of the Obama campaign. Soon, the White House will launch mobile.WhiteHouse.gov., a mobile-ready version of the White House’s virtual headquarters that is optimized for any Web-enabled mobile device. In other words, WhiteHouse.gov won’t just be iPhone-centric. "Mobile web usage grew over 100% in the last year" in the U.S. and more worldwide, the official blog posting pointed out, linking to a recent TechCrunch article that noted Apple’s dominance (the iPhone and the iPod Touch) in the mobile space, with a 65% market share in the U.S.
Of course, none of this matters if the Obama administration can’t get anything passed. If the White House can use this technology to inform, so can we. How about using some of this technology to push the president to pass legislation that brings racial justice? I’m a tech nerd and still a fan of the president, but it’s time we start putting pressure on him to make some executive decisions and start passing legislation that brings the ‘change’ he spoke of during the election. These new technology platforms are still up for grabs and we need to take them. We’ll keep you updated on technology driven campaigns that put pressure on the president to pass racially just legislation, like healthcare and immigration reform.