The 2016 State of the Union Will Be Streamed by Amazon

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The Obama administration has been remarkably proactive in using new technology to force people to pay attention to politics. Among other things, that’s meant a State of the Union livestreamed on YouTube for the last few years, and this time around, the digital options are even better.

In a post on Medium, White House Chief Digital Officer Jason Goldman laid out the administration’s strategy for ‘meeting people where they are’. That means pushing the 2016 State of the Union on as many platforms as possible, including Amazon Video for the first time.

The idea is that you can watch the State of the Union on-demand on any Amazon product (like the Fire TV stick). Other moves will include posting snippets on Vine and Tumblr in GIF form, posting photos on Instagram, and using Obama’s 68 million Twitter followers.


I’m not sure that the addition of Amazon Video will be the final straw that pushes members of the public to watch a political speech, but Goldman’s post does include an interesting look at how presidential engagement has changed over the years: it’s a long way from Jefferson’s handwritten reports, to three-second speech GIFs being posted on Tumblr.