Taiwan Presidential Hopeful Turns to YouTube

Taiwan presidential candidate Frank Hsieh has opened an account on YouTube and is publishing videos of himself as a way to talk to young voters, he said in the first video.

Taiwan will hold its fourth presidential election this year on March 22, and the two main candidates are battling to sway voters in the few remaining weeks of campaigning.

Hsieh represents the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), and hopes to continue the party's control of the executive branch of government in Taiwan. The DPP has been the ruling party for the past eight years, under President Chen Shui-bian.

His opponent, Ma Ying-jeou of the Kuomintang (KMT, or Nationalist Party), is leading Hsieh in the run-up to voting, according to most polls.

But Hsieh hopes the Internet can help him reach younger voters. To that end, he's already opened a blog on popular Web site Wretch, which is owned by Yahoo Taiwan.

His latest attempt to connect to young voters has been with YouTube. In his opening videos, Hsieh tells viewers that this is the first time he's ever done a self-made video to post on a Web site, and takes a jab at his rival by adding that he has to make his own videos because his party isn't as rich as the competition.

He also pledges to post videos on YouTube to discuss issues and communicate with voters. One of his first serious videos is a short history lesson of the 228 incident, an incident his party blames on the KMT. On Feb. 28, 1947, government troops opened fire on a crowd of protesters in Taipei, the island's largest city.

The incident marked the start of a period of government suppression on Taiwan in which hundreds or thousands of people were imprisoned or disappeared, according to various sources.

Hsieh has already posted seven videos to his account on YouTube. He posted his first video on Feb. 28.

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