The Inauguration Will Be Televised…And Facebooked, and Twittered, and Texted

By Melissa Lafsky | January 20, 2009 12:11 pm

In a little under a half hour, Barack Obama will officially take his place as the country’s next POTUS. And while the event will be brimming with historic firsts for the country, the coverage contains plenty of firsts for the integration of technology, politics, and major events.

Sure, there’ll be some people who actually attend the event in person—around 2 million brave souls have packed into the Mall in frigid temperatures, with questionable bathroom status (for comparison, around 400,000 showed up for Bush’s first inauguration). But for the rest of the world that didn’t make it to D.C. for the party, there’s a veritable smorgasbord of real-time coverage and information all over the airwaves. For those who still watch TV, you can see Obama take the reins on any cable or broadcast news station, or watch live feeds online from CNN, MSNBC, and just about every other news source. Then there are the liveblogs and Twitters, ot to mention Facebook statuses which, according to CNN (which has partnered with Facebook to offer simultaneous Web viewing and status-updating), are being updated at around 2,000 updates per minute, and 3,000 comments per minute. Not to mention the conversation rampaging among the 4 million fans on Obama’s official Facebook page.

Text messaging the event is rampant as well, to the point where the CEO of Shane Neman issued a press release saying he believes millions of text messages will be lost, on the level of New Year’s Eve.

So there you have it—500 different ways to find out what’s going on in D.C. And if you miss all of it, not to worry—the replays will show up on YouTube momentarily.

MORE ABOUT: obama, technology

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