This is going to be an “open post” that I add to over the next couple of days as I see online coverage of the inauguration that is unique or special. I was starting to bookmark these for personal historical and research purposes, but I decided I might as well make it a public exercise as it may help a few of you discover sites you may have overlooked.
It already appears that the major media players are blowing out all the stops for their online coverage. But “minor” media are also doing some simple, cool things as well.
Here are some things that have already impressed me (again, I’ll be adding to this list through Tuesday or Wednesday):
Post-inauguration: An incredible satellite photo of the National Mall. Speaking of incredible photos, here’s a link to the CNN.com feature called “The Moment,” that “synchs” photos people took from the Mall. Speaking of “the moment,” Google has a fascinating blog post about inauguration-related search activity that includes a line chart that displays the dramatic fall-off in the U.S. people using the service during the new President’s speech. Same thing happened on Flickr and Last.fm.
Watching live: This event will likely be the most “live-streamed” event to date. As I note in several places below, nearly ever news site you anticipate live streaming to be, it will be. However (as of 7:30 a.m. ET), it’s already apparent to me that C-Span’s Inauguration Hub is going to be a great spot to see multiple feeds. Other places (list to grow) to watch live streams:
CNN/Facebook: In addition to feeds you’d expect from CNN.com, they are trying out a Facebook app that will stream video and allow FB users to “discuss amongst friends” what’s taking place. Go to the front of CNN.com and click through. The “connect” with your Facebook username and password. I’m on it now and can attest: It’s a new benchmark for the all online “group-watch” experience.
Hulu.com: This is the first “live” event the impressive service has featured. If you have the bandwidth, it should be worth checking out. I predict Hulu.com will be most “like TV.”
Joost.com: Like Hulu.com, Joost seems to be using the day to show-off its service.
The ‘official’ feed: It will be interesting to see if the official Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies website has the bandwidth to live stream the swearing in.
Old School web cams: Here are some links to web cams that may be stationed around the areas of D.C. that will capture images of the inauguration.
Official sites: There are two “official” inauguration websites. (1) As mentioned above, the official Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies is run by Congress and is focused on the swearing-in event, itself. The Presidential Inaugural Committee‘s website is focused on all the festivities related to the Inauguration. They are also managing web outposts on YouTube, Twitter and Flickr.
The Tag: On all the social media sites, i.e., Flickr, Twitter, YouTube, etc., people who are creating content and talking about the inauguration are being encouraged to tag their content with inaug09. For example, on Twitter, you can go to Search.Twitter.com and search the tag, “inaug09″ (with or without the “#”) and see a steady stream of “tweets” from around the world. Here are searches of a few other major “live-web” sites for content that has been tagged “inaug09″ by those sharing it: Flickr.com; YouTube.com; Technorati.com (aggregates a search for blogs, photos and videos tagged ‘inaug09′).
MSNBC.com’s “The Inauguration”: Looking like it’s going to be a go-to site for me. The approach of NBC to covering the Olympics looks like it has influenced the organization and breadth of this site. Check out the way in which videos are accompanied by transcriptions of the speech so that you can easily make video “clips” to embed.
C-Span’s Inauguration Hub: The best “anchor-free” live-streaming of the events. Several cameras are set up at different locations and you can click on a map to select which view you’d like to view.
CNN.com: They are trying to integrate as much “user-generated,” social-media content as possible using their “iReporters” and a Facebook app that will stream video and chat w/ your friends during the speech, as well as something I’m looking forward to, “The Moment,” which will use Microsoft’s “Photosynth” to morph together into a single image the thousands, or tens of thousands, of photos from all different angles of the moment at which Obama in sworn in. Despite it not working on the Mac OS, it’s a technology I’ve seen demo’d and the result is truly amazing. (MSNBC.com is using Photosynth also.)
NPR.org‘s Inauguration Coverage: The only off-line news media that penetrates my force field in NPR. Their web coverage is a great example of how to integrate online tools with traditional media. They are no longer just a “sound” medium and they’ve shown they know what that means. You can follow their updates via Twitter.com/NPRPolitics.
Mashups: I’m running into several interesting Google maps user-created mashups and I’m sure there will be some “official” ones, as well. Here’s one that displays on a Google map the location of YouTube videos being posted. The person who created it also produced this drive-through of the Inauguration parade route using Google Earth (and some really bad music).
MetaFilter: Here’s a meta-list of links to videos of every recorded Inauguration Speech. The first recorded one was MicKinley’s second speech.
Fun stuff: Lots of folks are having fun with the inauguration. For example, check out this tribute site celebrating the new President is a die-hard White Sox fan. And if you’d like to make a photo of yourself in the style of an Obama poster, there are several sites that do it. I did mine at Paste Magazine’s Obamacon.me. Are you smiling yet? If so, you can add a photo of yourself to JoeBidensTeeth.com. And, as always, The folks at The Onion has some classics.
More to come…