Two years, 24 candidates, over 30 debates, 54 primaries and caucuses and one election night later, we have a new president. On Tuesday, January 20, Sen. Barack Obama will take the oath-of-office, becoming the 44th president in our nation’s history.
For those of us who covered the election — reporters, producers, editors, bloggers, web developers, engineers, and more — the moment represents the end of a journey, perhaps not as long or as arduous as the candidate’s path to the White House but it’s been an enormous and gratifying challenge nonetheless.
It seems an appropriate time to launch our new blog — ABCNews.com Behind-the-Scenes — in advance of this historic day when the nation looks forward to talk about what we here on ABC News’ digital team will be doing in and for the future of our business.
Over the next few days, there will be no more anticipated event than Barack Obama’s oath of office and inaugural address. In recognition of that moment, we here at ABCNews.com have a simple goal: provide the best, highest quality video of the moment in the easiest way for the user.
To that end, for the first time, we’re put a live, 16:9 widescreen feed of the Inauguration embedded right at the top of our home page. No clicks, no video players, just the live event delivered straight to the user on http://abcnews.com. And we tip our collective hats to the leader of our web development team Marc Rullo for tackling this project (despite post-election exhaustion).
Our 16:9 live embedded player is presented by Audi, but it’s not the only feature you’ll find on the big day or the weekend leading up to it.
Check our "Guide to the Inauguration" where you can find out all about ABC News’ coverage both online and on-air throughout the weekend — from Barack Obama and Joe Biden’s train ride into Washington on Saturday, the star-studded "We Are One" celebration on Sunday, to the volunteer activities in honor of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Monday.
On inauguration day itself, ABCNews reporters will be out in force to bring the very latest reporting and analysis on the official events and the historic crowds expected to descend on our nation’s capital (and endure the cold).
ABC’s Juju Chang will be looking at it all from a slightly different perspective, as she roams the city, attempting to experience the inauguration from multiple vantage points – armed with a Flip video camera, an i-Phone, a Blackberry and a laptop. She’ll be blogging on her new blog, Juju Jugles, Twittering and updating her Facebook page all day – sign up and follow Juju and find out what the experience is like in the thick of it and who she meets along the way.
One our excellent web producers, Nitya Venkataraman, has put together two special sections packed with stories, slideshows, and videos in a special section: President 44: Inauguration of Barack Obama. and a look back at the outgoing President in the Bush Legacy.
Lindsey Ellerson, our video producer in Washington, also worked with Brian Canova and our video team in New York to pull together every Inaugural video dating back to JFK.
We’ll have a whole lot more — full stories, live blogging from ABC’s John Berman, three additional live streams including wall-to-wall coverage on ABC News Now (link to News Now index or sked), Twittering from George Stephanopoulos and Jake Tapper and video, video, video from the Inaugural, parades, celebrity-packed balls, and so much more.
We hope you’ll join us on-air and online for this historic event; it’s been a long road and it’s going to an incredible day.
–Ed O’Keefe & Sara Just, ABCNews.com