Government puts a new spin on the traditional press conference by fielding questions from the public and posting the briefing online
In many respects, it looks like a traditional beltway press conference. State Department spokesman Sean McCormack stands at a lectern adorned with the Great Seal of the United States. Behind him are two government flags.
After McCormack’s brief introduction, he turns to a mounted LCD television to his right to listen to “Erin from Georgia” by way of pre-recorded video clip.
“In what ways do the U.S. diplomatic corps and the U.S. military work together to combat terrorism and achieve stability in Iraq and elsewhere?” Erin asks, identifying herself as a Baltimore-based college student. “Do you see this relationship shifting as conditions change and develop on the ground?”
To his front are several rows of filled chairs, normally reserved for the Washington media establishment. But not this time.