President Barack Obama’s first State of the Union Address of his second term left some Americans with unanswered questions.
When you logged onto Google Wednesday, did you notice a memo at the bottom of your screen that said, “President Obama answers your questions. RSVP to tomorrow’s Hangout.”
It may seem like a strange way to spend Valentine's Day, but on Thursday, the president will be participating in a series called "Fireside Hangouts.” The White House described the Google event as the 21st century version of President Franklin D. Roosevelt famous radio addresses, known as “Fireside Chats.”
FDR began addressing citizens directly when he was still governor of New York in 1929 and continued the informal addresses as president. March 12, 1933, a week after his inauguration, was the first time he addressed Americans informally as their president.
Even though the chats began 80 years ago, FDR didn’t actually ever talk to American citizens sitting by a fire.
The term “Fireside Chat” stems from Harry C. Butcher of CBS. He referred to FDR's talks as such and once the public and media began to adopt the term, the president embraced it.
Obama will be participating in a “Fireside Chat” of his own, answering Americans’ questions regarding his SOTU speech and the issues and policies he laid out in the address. Except he's twisted the term into "Fireside Hangout," same idea though.
Questions for the president can be submitted on and vote on by Americans through the White House +YouTube Channel: http://at.wh.gov/hC22N.
Watch live stream footage of the “Fireside Chat” on Thursday at 4:50 p.m. EST on the +The White House Google+ page and at http://youtube.com/whitehouse.
Right now, the presidents SOTU speech can be viewed on the same channel for those who missed it.
Currently, nearly 15,000 have responded to the president’s “Fireside Hangout.” Talk about the upcoming event on Twitter with #firesidehangout and #sotu .
To contact the editor, e-mail: