2016 Presidential Candidate Bernie Sanders Makes 360 Video Appearance


U.S. Senator (D) and presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders yesterday made a VR appearance at a fund raising event captured by Los Angeles based 360 studio Virtuality Lab.

Whether U.S. presidential candidate Bernie Sanders makes it to the White House or not in 2016, one thing is for sure: VR is getting political, and not always at the behest of the politician it may seem.

According to Variety, the 360 recording of Sanders’ appearance (taking place at the home of Hollywood based couple Mimi Kennedy and Larry Dilg) wasn’t actually commissioned by his campaign itself, but rather was initiated by Virtuality Lab.

Bernie Sanders' notes
a cheeky look at Sanders’ notes

The oldest candidate currently running for the 2016 presidential election at 73, Bernie Sanders is ostensibly the first to have a 360 video taken of him for the purposes of VR-viewing. While no mention of the recording was made on either of Sanders’ twitter accounts or his official website—a possible hint that political campaigners may still be shying away from VR as a real media outlet—the 360 video captures a section of his talk where Sanders explains his position on technology, and the role it plays regarding employment and quality of life. One of the pillars of his campaign is the effort to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour.

Because Gear VR has yet to see YouTube integration, owners have to download the video which thankfully can be done in a variety of ways. We suggest downloading the 2.5K video from Vridieo (right-click save video as) and converting the .webm file to the required .mp4 format. There are also a number of online services that can strip YouTube videos and offer them as .mp4 downloads, but its a crapshoot in terms of what default quality you’ll be given.

Android Google Cardboard users however can view the video directly from YouTube (up to 4K at 60fps) thanks to YouTube’s recent support for VR 360 videos. Just click on the Cardboard symbol on the lower right-hand corner of the screen to activate side-by-side mode and pop your Android smartphone into whatever VR smartphone adapter you may have.

Oculus DK1/2 owners can download the WebVR-enabled version of either Chrome or Firefox and watch it directly on the Vrideo website.

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Well before the first modern XR products hit the market, Scott recognized the potential of the technology and set out to understand and document its growth. He has been professionally reporting on the space for nearly a decade as Editor at Road to VR, authoring more than 3,500 articles on the topic. Scott brings that seasoned insight to his reporting from major industry events across the globe.
  • Don Gateley

    Gear VR is already an anachronism.