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Your questions, your State of the Union

By Olivia Ma

Director, Google News Initiative

It’s the biggest speech of the year, and next Tuesday night at 9 p.m. ET, people across the country and around the world will sit down to watch. But as President Obama delivers the 2011 State of the Union Address, which will be streamed live on YouTube along with the Republican response, you can do more than just watch the speech: you can also submit your questions for the President for an exclusive YouTube Interview that will take place just two days later, on January 27.

In fact, you can get started today. Health care. Education. Foreign policy. What would you like to ask the President about the most important issues our country faces? Go to to submit your question now, or watch the speech on Tuesday night with your webcam or video camera nearby so that you can record and submit your question as soon as it strikes you. This year, you'll also be able to ask your question via Twitter: just include the hashtag #askobama in your Tweet. And be sure to have your say in what should be asked by voting on questions submitted by others, too.

A few suggestions before submitting your questions:

President Obama’s responses to a selection of your top-voted questions will be streamed live from the White House on at 2:30 p.m. ET on Thursday January 27.

This interview is the first in a series of world leader interviews coming to YouTube in 2011 as part of YouTube World View. These interviews will give people around the world the chance to engage in conversation with their elected officials and other influential people from the world of business, philanthropy, technology, media and the arts. Check back on the channel in the next few months for more opportunities to participate.

You have until Wednesday January 25 at midnight ET to submit your question for President Obama. The YouTube community made history last year when the President answered your questions in the first ever citizen-powered interview of a United States president. If you didn’t get an opportunity to ask the President a question last year, make sure you don’t miss out this time -- get your submission in early.

Remember, after the President’s address you’ll have the opportunity to watch Congressman Paul Ryan (R-WI) deliver the GOP response to the State of the Union as well. And within the month, we’ll be holding a similar YouTube Interview with a prominent Republican leader - more details soon.

*Update - that should read "You have until Wednesday January 26 at midnight ET to submit your question for President Obama".*

  1. Video questions are highly preferred (though we also accept text). Videos should be about 20 seconds long and be sure to ask the question directly.
  2. Speak clearly and try to film in a place with minimal background noise. Keep the camera as still as possible.
  3. Feel free to be creative (use props, charts, etc.) to help your question stand out. If you have time, find an interesting backdrop that may help reinforce your message.
  4. Submit your question early. The final deadline is Wednesday January 26 at midnight ET.