President Obama was the first candidate to use the power of social networking media to help him win his bid for the White House in 2008. On Wednesday, he will participate in a virtual town hall meeting on Facebook Live at the company’s California headquarters to promote his deficit-busting message of shared responsibility and prosperity, and perhaps give a little boost to his re-election campaign. Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg will moderate the event, which will be live-streamed on BET.com at approximately 4:45 p.m. EST.
“It is an attempt to reach people who may not get their news through traditional news sources like newspapers or the network news,” explained White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer said of the decision to use the social network. “We want to go to where people congregate online, and Facebook is one of the premier places to do that.”
The town hall meeting is part of a national tour the president has been making to pitch his budget proposal, which calls for people from every economic level to do their part.
“If we’re asking people who are going to see potentially fewer services in their neighborhoods to make a little sacrifice, then we can ask millionaires and billionaires to make a little sacrifice,” he told a group of Virginia students on Tuesday.
Facebook Live was created on the fly last year when an Icelandic volcano eruption stranded hundreds of European developers who’d planned to travel to the States to attend a conference hosted by the company. More than 125,000 people logged on.