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LONDON (AP) — Former President Barack Obama told Prince Harry in an interview broadcast Wednesday that people in leadership roles must be careful in their use of social media and warned against spending too much time immersed in the internet at the expense of the world outside.

Obama did not, however, directly mention his successor, President Donald Trump, who has made the use of Twitter a centerpiece of his presidency.

“All of us in leadership have to find ways to recreate a common space on the internet,” he said. “One of the dangers of the internet is people can have entirely different realities. They can be just cocooned in information that reinforces their current biases.”

He spoke with Harry in the prince’s capacity as guest editor of the BBC Radio 4 news program. Both men said the interview, recorded in Canada in September, was Obama’s first since leaving the presidency in January.

Obama said he felt serene the day he left the White House at the end of his second four-year term despite the vast amount of work that remained unfinished. He said it was “hugely liberating” to be able to set his own agenda in the morning to have the time to talk with his wife, Michelle, now that he is no longer president.

“I miss the work itself because it was fascinating,” Obama said of his eight years in the Oval Office, citing his health care reforms as one of his proudest achievements.

In a brief live segment at the end of the show, Harry said he did not know if Obama would be on the guest list for his wedding in May to American actress Meghan Markle.

“I don’t know about that, we haven’t even put the invite or the guest list together, who knows if he’s going to be invited or not,” Harry said. “I wouldn’t want to ruin that surprise.”

The Sun newspaper, a popular tabloid, has suggested that the British government is concerned that Harry and Markle may invite the Obamas but not Trump, possibly straining ties between the two governments.

Harry did say his fiancee enjoyed her first Christmas with the royal family.

“The family loved having her there,” Harry said.

The prince used his position to ask Obama a “lightning round” of questions of the type normally asked of entertainers, not politicians.

The former president declined to say whether he wears boxers or briefs, preserving a bit of post-presidential dignity, but was willing to say he prefers Aretha Franklin to Tina Turner — “Aretha is the best,” he said of the Queen of Soul — and favors retired basketball star Michael Jordan over current phenom LeBron James.

Obama rejected gloomy prognostications about the state of the world, saying that in many ways the world is healthier and wealthier than it has ever been, making it perhaps the best time in human history to be born.

He cited improved treatment of African-Americans and greatly expanded opportunities for young women as achievements of the past few generations that give him hope for the future.

Harry also interviewed his father, Prince Charles, who offered a more downbeat assessment. He said the root causes of climate change are not being addressed even as it caused “untold horrors” in different parts of the world.

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(Kensington Palace courtesy of The Obama Foundation via AP)

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9 thoughts on “Obama To Prince Harry: Leaders Must Use Care On Social Media

  1. specialt757 on said:

    Social media has its pluses and minuses. It’s a very inexpensive way to advertise and promote businesses or other enterprises to the masses. The fact that people use social media for evil is the problem.

  2. African American Woman on said:

    I hate social media and can’t stand people, especially us grown folks, spouting non-sense about what somebody they don’t and will never know posted, who is dating whom and other stupid stuff…What happened to go old conversation-you know, face to face.? Minding your own business, finding hobbies and educating oneself by reading and researching…I feel so sorry for the kids of today.

    On the other hand, President Obama is still my number one hero! So much intelligence, grace, class and fineness all rolled up into one man!

  3. Passing Through!! on said:

    the clip of YOU handing over the presidency to Trump ELECT in January, did you feel like the JACKASS you looked like that day??
    The real jackass is the dumbass “45” who had no idea that President Obama was having him investigated while he smiled in his face, shook his hand and handed him the keys to the white house. Yeah, Obama handed trump the presidency and he also handed those Russia files right over to the FBI and got 4 indictments and more on the way. Jared Kushner and trump jr are both going to prison thanks to President Obama who got the ultimate last laugh by destroying trump’s presidency and will still go down as the worse president ever!

  4. Yes Mr. Obama social media does require care when using, I still get a kick out of your twitter skit on Kimmel when you scoffed at the premise the Trump wouldn’t become POTUS so he wouldn’t go down as the worst president then I play the clip of YOU handing over the presidency to Trump ELECT in January, did you feel like the JACKASS you looked like that day??

    • The real jackass posted above me. Just so we’re clear, that would be you jhuf.
      SN: btw, did you get interviewed for the pooper-scooper job at the WH now that phonyrosa is gone?

      • Passing Through!! on said:

        trump wouldn’t hire his broke ass to work at the white house, not even to scoop his s**t!

      • specialt757 on said:

        @Passing… I guess you’re right, that explains why he’s still here hating on Obama.

  5. Social media-is the DEVIL.
    Once you put your business out there-IT IS FOR THE WHOLE WORLD TO SEE.

    Chump needs to STOP with all of his damn TWITTERING/TWEETING!!!!!
    Do the job that your REDNECK SUPPORTERS put your dumbass in office to do!!!!!!!

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