This post has been updated.
If you haven’t heard, President Obama was on reddit Wednesday doing an AMA, or “Ask Me Anything.” He is the first sitting president to participate in the site’s popular feature. News of the president’s participation spread quickly, and the site became unavailable temporarily because of the load.
The president first responded to a question on space exploration, a subject very much in the news recently thanks to Mars rover Curiosity’s successful landing and delivery of more than 7 gigabits of data, including photographs.
The president responded to a question regarding NASA’s direction and budget, writing:
“Making sure we stay at the forefront of space exploration is a big priority for my administration. The passing of Neil Armstrong this week is a reminder of the inspiration and wonder that our space program has provided in the past; the curiosity probe on mars is a reminder of what remains to be discovered. The key is to make sure that we invest in cutting edge research that can take us to the next level — so even as we continue work with the international space station, we are focused on a potential mission to a asteroid as a prelude to a manned Mars flight.
The president next went to another question popular among members of the reddit community: Internet freedom. His second response was to the question: “Is Internet Freedom an issue you’d push to add to the Democratic Party’s 2012 platform?”
Internet freedom is something I know you all care passionately about; I do too. We will fight hard to make sure that the internet remains the open forum for everybody — from those who are expressing an idea to those to want to start a business. And although there will be occasional disagreements on the details of various legislative proposals, I won't stray from that principle — and it will be reflected in the platform.
And, in case anyone’s wondering, the president, a self-described “Bulls guy,” said his favorite basketball player is Michael Jordan.
But here are the questions we were waiting for answers to — the top five awesome — and by “awesome” I mean kind of funny/ridiculous/quirky/weird questions for the president on reddit:
1) Has PSY performed at the White House yet? (Note: This question has since been deleted)
2) What are you thoughts on Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Freddy Mercury and Neil Patrick Harris? (Note: This question has since been deleted)
3) What's the recipe for the White House's beer? (Note: Here’s Obama’s response: “It will be out soon! I can tell from first hand experience, it is tasty.”)
4) What colour is your toothbrush?
5) Hi Mr President, it's my girlfriends birthday today and she would want nothing more than for you to wish her a happy birthday, so if you could, could you wish Melissa a happy birthday! Thank you. <3
Let us know your favorite presidential AMA questions in the comments.
Update, 5:37 p.m.: The president ended his AMA with a reference to a popular “rage comic” meme called “Not Bad Obama.” The meme was born of a photo of the president frowning particularly deeply (along with the first lady). At the end of his response to a work-life balance question, the president wrote, “By the way, if you want to know what I think about this whole reddit experience — NOT BAD!”
Hayley Tsukayama contributed to this report.