He wears it: “The device has rarely been far from his side — on most days, it was fastened to his belt.”
He’s a perfect thumb-typist: “His messages to advisers and friends, they say, are generally crisp, properly spelled and free of symbols or emoticons.”
He uses it all hours of the night often sending messages to aides at 1 a.m. or 3 a.m.
Advisors have to take it away from him when he has to focus: “As he sat down with a small circle of advisers to prepare for debates with Senator John McCain, one rule was quickly established: No BlackBerrys. Mr. Axelrod ordered everyone to put their devices in the centre of a table during work sessions. Mr. Obama, who was known to sneak a peek at his, was no exception.”
He’s always already heard the news, thank you very much: “[Obama] received a scaled-down list of news clippings, with his advisers wanting to keep him from reading blogs and news updates all day long, yet aides said he still seemed to hear about nearly everything in real time.”
He even watches sports with it: “Mr. Obama used e-mail to stay in constant touch with friends from the lonely confines of the road, often sending messages like “Sox!” when the Chicago White Sox won a game.”
Live and let others live with their thumbs attached to mobile devices, we say. But others aren’t so generous. Even though quitting the BlackBerry can be as hard as breaking a drug addiction, now that Obama’s President, he may have to shut his BlackBerry off. Reports the Times:
In addition to concerns about e-mail security, he faces the Presidential Records Act, which puts his correspondence in the official record and ultimately up for public review, and the threat of subpoenas. A decision has not been made on whether he could become the first e-mailing president, but aides said that seemed doubtful.
The good news? Obama might be able to just make one his aides carry a BlackBerry and check it all the time for him. Says Diana Owen, American Studies prof at Georgetown University: “The nature of the president’s job is that others can use e-mail for him.” Wonder if that’ll be addictive.
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