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Nailing Down the Obama Web Video Doctrine

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, March 2 2009

Online video platforms are the new politicians' cars, it seems -- the make and model provide a clear window into the elected leader's soul. Some commentators have seen the Obama White House's YouTube use as the equivalent of tooling around DC in a gas-guzzling yellow Hummer. So gauche! So destructive! Well, no more. CNET's Chris Soghoian is thrilled that the White House is newly resisting "Google's insatiable thirst for detailed data on the browsing habits of Web surfers" by going with an Akamai-hosted video solution for their blog. The Washington Post's Garance Franke-Ruta reports that WhiteHouse.gov has merely swapped vendors. For now, the big house is using Vimeo, whose "ethical hipster editorial philosophy," writes Franke-Ruta, "makes it a more natural fit than YouTube for a buttoned-up government Web site looking to offer video to the masses while minimizing risks that consumers will be referred to offensive material developed by other users of a video sharing service." Revver and Viddler did not respond to a request for comment on the policy shift. (It's obvious that's a joke, right?)