Last week, we noticed TheObamaDiary, a new YouTube channel churning out viral videos of Obama and children being adorable together. (Remember the time Michelle handed Barack a crying baby, and the baby stopped crying immediately?) We pointed out that the viral videos made the president seem so down to earth, maybe the campaign should hire the YouTube user responsible for the memes to pursue a new strategy. Next Media Animation, the Taiwanese group turns internet memes into cartoons, took the idea a step further and reported that the Obama campaign launched the channel to improve the president's public image.
"We did not personally confirm that information, but at this point I think it is universally assumed that his team has released the footage," said NMA's spokesperson Jenna Manula. "The President must know and be close to the person(s) who are within arms distance of him, recording his actions and taking pictures inside his personal limo and the White House. It is pretty much impossible for any civilian to get that close to Obama."
In any case, they animated the viral videos and also superimposed Obama over some famous memes. We can't decide which is weirder: Obama as keyboard cat or "Biden bit my finger."
In fact, the new YouTube channel bears no affiliation to the Obama campaign, but the White House does deserve some credit. We contacted the person behind TheObamaDiary, who asked to remain anonymous due to an influx of hate mail, and they explained the secret:
Most of the clips are from the end of West Wing Week videos - eg the crying baby is at the end of this one. And the boy and girl calling their mother from the President's car is at the end of this one.
There's always a 'light' clip at the end of the WWW videos, but I'm not sure how many people see them. Myself a few friends saw the crying baby clip and reckoned it was so hilarious it was worth posting on YouTube, so lots more people would see it. It's been incredible how it's taken off!
So Manula is half right in claiming that somebody close to Obama filmed the videos. However, TheObamaDiary creator is still the one who deserves credit for making it digestible for the 20 second-long attention span of internet watchers. Take note, White House YouTube staff. Your version of the baby crying video has 25,000 views. TheObamaDiary's: 1.2 million and rising.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to email@example.com.