It is true that President Obama gets to keep his Blackberry.
The historic presidency of Barack Obama earns another “first black” title as the President wins the debate of using his “blackberry” while President of the United States. According to new White House press secretary, Robert Gibbs, “The president has a BlackBerry through a compromise that allows him to stay in touch with senior staff and a small group of personal friends in a way that use will be limited and that the security is enhanced to ensure his ability to communicate.”
Many are concerned that President Obama’s usage of the Blackberry will be a security issue if one of his e-mail correspondents lost his or her device? The other concern with the President having a mobile device is how secure it will be from hackers or foreign agencies? After all the speculations of him becoming the first Blackberry-in-Chief, the rules have been changed and Obama will be issued a super secured Sectra edge phone.
Perhaps the NSA and US telecommunications companies have created a special, more secure digital pathway for Obama’s messages to travel on, one that would resist the inevitable penetration attempts by foreign governments. Even FBI agents use Berreys to send sensitive information.
Obama and one his closest aides believe that without his “virtual connection to old friends and trusted confidants beyond the bubble that seals off every president from the people who elected him, he’d be wondering what’s happening on the other side of the iron bars that surround the People’s House.” Do you think that as the first Digital President that Obama should keep his secure Blackberry and continue to use it as a tool to stay grounded to the American people’s voice? Or by keeping his Blackberry he places American national security issues at risk?
In the MCDM program we continue to study and witness the trends of mobile devices, and their consistent placement in the business, political, and personal lives of women and men. During the campaign, Obama proved his tech-savvy organizing, and part of it won him the election. It’s as equally important for a president to be comfortable around technology, yet there is something worrisome of becoming too dependent upon technology,or becoming fixated on a time-consuming device may be crossing a thin line.
At the same time former President George W. Bush refused to “send” emails because he was concerned that his messages would be released for “public domain”. Work-related communications of executive branch employees could become public records after the president’s term is through. Interesting is that when the issue of using emails was presented to one President they wanted to remain in “privacy” as a public servant while a new incumber is opting to stay in touch with the “public”. Is the Bush Administrations legacy of “secrecy” a good reason to allows Obama to use his email as long as it is released for public records? How have former Presidents kept in touch with the people that elected them? What are your thoughts?