Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Story Behind the Most Viral Photo Ever

Nov 19, 2012 The Daily Beast

The image that came to symbolize Obama’s reelection was chosen on the spur of the moment by an exhausted campaign staffer. Brian Ries on how the most viral photo ever came to be.

You've probably seen it by now.

Michelle Obama, wearing a red-and-white patterned dress, stands with her back to the camera. Her arms are wrapped around her husband, whose face is relaxed, his eyes closed, the hints of a smile lingering on the edges of his lips. “Four more years,” reads the text accompanying the photograph, which was posted on the Obama campaign’s Facebook and Twitter accounts around 11:15 p.m. on election night—just as it became clear the president had won a second term.
President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama in Dubuque, Iowa, on Aug. 15. (Scout Tufankjian for Obama for America)
That photo, taken by a campaign photographer just a few days into the job in mid-August, has broken all sorts of Internet records. With more than 816,000 retweets as of Sunday, it’s the most shared picture in the history of Twitter, beating out entries from Justin Bieber and the fast-food chain Wendy’s. It's also the most-liked photograph ever to be shared on Facebook, amassing almost 4.5 million “likes” since Election Day. And it’s sure to be the photo most everyone with an Internet connection will remember seeing as they heard that Barack Obama—for better or for worse—would reside for four more years at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

The photographer, Scout Tufankjian, says it captures the Obamas’ “deep love and respect for one another.”

More, photos and text, at The Daily Beast

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