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Scrutiny
  
@Townhall – Road to term II
@Townhall is a Novel Obama initiative that deserves to be emulated by Global Leaders for greater transparency and reach
04/08/2011

“When we sacrifice our commitment to education, we’re sacrificing our future. We can’t let that happen. Our kids deserve better,” tweeted President Barack Obama. @Townhall may seem just another twitter account to most readers but clearly, it’s much more. @townhall is the “official account for Twitter hosted town halls.” In other words, the forum which political heads can employ to directly engage their electorate. And the first politician to take up this opportunity? Barack Obama but of course, who, on July 6, 2011, invited and answered varied questions from mostly American audiences, and that too live.

This initiative of reaching out is not only novel and historical but also redefines the concept of “democracy.” Of course, the launch of such an interface is accurately in sync with the initial 2012 election campaign plans of Obama – so one might suspect that Twitter is clearly aligning with the Democrats. But giving them the benefit of doubt, the fact is that till date, it has only been Obama who has been so proactive amongst almost all global leaders in directly engaging his citizens. Another of his team’s initiatives, the WhiteHouse 2.0 campaign that was started two years ago, also talks about a similar initiative wherein all significant social networking sites are used as tools to reach bigger audiences.

When Obama reportedly met CEOs of Twitter (May 2011) and Facebook (April, 2011), it was evidently to plan the future of his online campaign, which now seems be gaining a larger than imaginable proportion. Heads of State around the world, and even those planning to be Obama’s opponents in the coming Presidential elections, need to at least learn these few lessons from Obama, as merely opening a Twitter or Facebook account does not really further one’s cause. Live elocution prove’s a politician’s honest and sincere discourse quotient. Any takers?

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