A Presidential Presentation Paradox

Friday, January 27th, 2012 by Simon Morton

There has been some controversy surrounding Barrack Obama’s decision to include a PowerPoint presentation in the enhanced version of his annual State Of The Union address.

Opinions on the success of this new approach vary wildly but there are a few key themes that are recurring in online forums.

Everybody loved the PacMan slide but not everyone can remember exactly what it was illustrating. Was the retro feel intentional? And should the PowerPoint really have been included at all?

Whatever your point of view on these ‘hot topics’, the gang here at Eyeful would like to formally thank the President of the United States for ably demonstrating The Presentation Paradox.

The Presentation Paradox occurs when the majority of the available resource has been exhausted before the actual presentation is even considered. In this case, the available time and money was apparently spent on the team of advisors and speech writers who worked with Obama to prepare the content.

The end result is that the visual presentation designer  is left to make the best of what was left.  In short, it all feels a little rushed and not quite up to the job…

Also, not content with helping us illustrate The Presentation Paradox, the whole shebang is also in danger of falling into another presenting pitfall – the enhanced presentation version ran the risk of being overshadowed by the presentation design (or lack thereof)! Heresy!

So President Obama, for services in demonstrating how important thinking visually throughout the entire presentation process is, we salute you!


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