Russian President Establishes YouTube Presence

    September 2, 2009

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has joined fellow leaders including Barack Obama, Queen Elizabeth II, and Nicolas Sarkozy on a world stage of sorts.  Medvedev, who already used a video blog, established his own YouTube channel this week.

The move could be viewed as a continuation of other efforts; Medvedev’s been a vocal fan of the Internet for some time now, and he’s done a good job of tying it to national issues.  In June of last year, he even promoted the idea of having a dedicated domain name for Russia in the Cyrillic script.

Now, with his YouTube channel that’s almost entirely in Cyrillic, President Medvedev has found another way to increase Russia’s presence online and get messages to Russian-speaking people.

It’s worth noting that the move isn’t a complete shift away from the Russian government’s tradition of secrecy; by way of disabled comments sections, discussion of Medvedev’s clips seems to have been discouraged (and this detail is particularly odd since Medvedev opened his video blog to comments in January).

Still, the development counts as progress.  Now it’ll just be interesting to see if Medvedev continues to move forward by embracing Twitter or anything else.