President Obama is set to sit down with the YouTube creator of “14 Fart Facts for my Flatulent Friends” after the State of the Union address on Tuesday.
In a blog posting at WhiteHouse.gov, officials claim the president will be interviewed by three YouTube personalities as an example of “efforts by the president and his administration to speak directly to the American people online.”
Hank Green, whose most recent YouTube video at the time of this publication is “14 Fart Facts for my Flatulent Friends”, will be among those questioning the president.
Glozell Green and Bethany Mota are the other two interviewers. Recent YouTube posts from them include “Becca Frucht and GloZell Make a Green Smoothie,” and “Throw a DIY Party! Quick Treats, Party favors + Outfits!”
The White House denies that the interviews are part of a larger strategy to elbow out the traditional press corps.
Yesterday, the press teased White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest about the interviews.
“Just noticing that these folks that are going to be conducting these interviews are not going to be professional journalists, they are people that post videos on YouTube. I’m just curious was “Charlie Bit My Finger” or “David After Dentist” not available?” CNN’s Jim Acosta asked.
“Does some of this suggest that maybe the State of The Union is not what it used to be and that you sort of have to jazz things up?” Acosta continued.
“I do know that there is at least one seasoned journalist who wrote an online story about this that had a headline to that effect,” Earnest replied.
“I think what you can take away from this, Jim, is that it’s a variation on an engagement strategy that we've used in previous years.”