The White House wants to be your second screen for State of the Union address

The Washington Post | The Wall Street Journal

During Tuesday's State of the Union address, " will post relevant charts, illustrations and data to support his points, all of it 'shareable' on a viewer’s social networks," Paul Farhi reports. "The idea is similar to the 'second screen' programming that corporate marketers transmit to Web visitors during the Super Bowl and other live TV events."

"These efforts are just a few of the Obama administration’s quest to circumvent traditional media routes and connect directly with viewers," Rebecca Ballhaus writes. "The White House regularly live tweets lines from his speeches, and releases flattering photos of presidential meetings — sometimes including events the press wasn’t allowed to attend — among other steps."

The White House's SOTU page already has a few videos, including one that imagines previous presidents "enhancing" their SOTU speeches.

For many, Twitter already fills the second screen for such events. Some TV networks attempted to build their own second-screen apps, but a Disney honcho told Janko Roettgers last fall that a second screen app ABC tested "was interesting to viewers, but not essential.”

Related: Photojournalists want better access to the White House | Obama official: Political controversies create ‘disincentive’ to be transparent

  • Andrew Beaujon

    Andrew Beaujon reported on the media for Poynter from 2012 to 2015. He was previously arts editor at and managing editor of Washington City Paper. He's the author of the 2006 book "Body Piercing Saved My Life," about Christian rock and evangelical Christian culture.


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