Watching and Interacting at the Inauguration Viewing

(written but somehow not posted the day after the election)

Last Tuesday was a banner day for America, the world and also for social media. Not only did more people apparently watch the inauguration of President Obama on TV, they broke records on the web, especially with the news sites and the social networks. Chief among the winners in the social arena were Twitter and Facebook. Facebook and CNN did an amazing integration. You could see all of your Facebook friends (or everyone on Facebook worldwide) at the same time as the streaming video. I started out in the morning exchanging comments with friends from overseas, former co-workers and many other friends. It was a great experience. At the peak, Facebook had over 8,000 new status updates and over 1.5MM Obama related posts in total yesterday.

Twitter reported on its' blog a record spike in traffic of 5x normal. (I killed two birds with one stone by figuring out how to make my Twitter updates also update my Facebook status.)

What's amazing is not just the numbers. It is the two way interaction in the media that will now become the standard. No leaning back and just watching any more. The new administration built on this through the launch of a new Whitehouse.gov site yesterday with an actual government blog where there can be RSS updates and two way communication with the white house from constituents. 

In a final note on technology for the inauguration for now, check out Microsoft's new technology, photosynth (bested viewed with internet explorer) and the stitching together of many photos from many different angles and individuals into an overall quilt. Quite amazing. I have been experimenting with this technology for some time and love it. 

The convergence of media and technology continues. Great to see it applied in a way that it puts the whole world into communication. 

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