Sunday, February 17, 2008

Yes We Can, No You Can't...YouTube's Growing Power.

How long did it take you to hear about's Yes We Can video? How long after that did you tell a friend about it? If the answer is anything other than not long, you probably live off the grid.'s exceptionally high quality video, loaded with celebrities large and small, took the online world by storm earlier this month. Not surprisingly it has spawned a number of knock offs, each enjoyable in its own right, which nonetheless would not exist but for the original.

YouTube and other online video hubs have and are changing the way we communicate, at least the those of us ensconced in the web and its technological possibilities. The visual medium, particularly as video, has long been heralded as a more efficient and effective communication portal. Until very recently it was the exclusive domain of television networks, access was tightly controlled and it was nearly impossible for the average Joe to reach out to his neighbors and fellow citizens. (See The Assult on Reason by Al Gore for a great dissection of the larger issues stemming from the one way nature of the current television dominated communication structure in which the American public is mired.) While you still can't get your message broadcast during the superbowl, or even you on your local cable access channel you can put it on the internet.

Threat Level has a nice blurb on the emerging political uses of YouTube and the power of the visual medium, along with a link to help get you started.

To give you a taste of whats out there, and something to aim for (yes set the bar very high) here are "Yes We Can", "No You Can't", and "Bomb Iran?"...

The internet, letting me bring you these great messages. Now if only I had of recorded this message as a video, someone might actually have watched it.

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