Archive for the ‘twitter’ Category

So is this how Twitter will monetize?

by Team Politics
Sunday, July 19th, 2009

From Gawker, we learn that NYT writer Sean Hansell has been testing a contextual ad-targeting system on Twitter:

Now, it’s possible that the tech writer was trying out a third-party advertising platform; i.e. ads served by a company other than Twitter Inc.

No matter: The concept is sound, and contextual ads based on user input have been Google’s cash cow; given how many of its users tweet in order to find information, Twitter would be wise to at least test out such an elegantly simple system, if the microblogging service can find a way to show the text ads unobtrusively (for example in the sidebar, where it places those paid concept definitions).

Tweet in the general direction of the White House

by Team Politics
Monday, July 6th, 2009

DC social media types David All Group have put together a neat little Twampaign (Twitter-campaign, y’see?) around the President’s healthcare plan.

So here’s the plan:
1. It is clear that a White House communications staffer is serving as a SpokesTwitterer and will read and perhaps even reply to our Tweets.
2. We are going to track and record all uses of the hashtag #handsoff for this experiment and report back our findings to you.
3. As long as you’re logged in to Twitter and using a web browser, just click here to load a draft Tweet and click “Update.” See below for more examples — please feel free to amend as you like.
4. This is the first time I’ve ever heard of anyone orchestrating a coordinated Twitter advocacy strategy. You’re going to be a part of history and help redefine activism.
Pretty interesting stuff. Good uptake so far too, with around 1700 tweets logged.
Thanks, techPresident!

He’s arrived!

by Team Politics
Thursday, June 18th, 2009

Pete Hoekstra made a mistake yesterday:

This time Michigan Representative Pete Hoekstra compared the Twitter activity in Iran to when Republicans used Twitter to express dissatisfaction over Speaker Pelosi’s decision to adjourn Congress.

“Iranian twitter activity similar to what we did in House last year when Republicans were shut down in the House,” Hoekstra tweeted from his BlackBerry today.

It’s almost exactly the same. Except there’s been five straight days of protests in Iran, foreign journalists are banned from covering the demonstrations, at least eight people have been killed, violence is widespread, protesters have been jailed, and businesses closed down early today just so hundreds of thousands of people could protest the election results at a rally.

This compared to last August when a few Republicans got on their BlackBerries and voiced their disappointment with Speaker Pelosi’s decision to adjourn Congress before taking a vote on an energy bill. They tweeted for awhile, enjoyed a ham sandwich, and then went on vacation for a month.

Well okay, that’s…pretty dumb. And now he’s a meme!

To Hoekstra is to whine using grandiose exaggerations and comparisons.

Like, say:

Tripped and fell today. Now I know how they felt on the Bataan death march.


Sneezed today. Reminded me of the influenza epidemic of 1918.

Grassley defends his tweets

by Team Politics
Monday, June 15th, 2009

Oh man, Chuck Grassley is milking this Twitter thing for as long as he possibly can. On “Fox News Sunday”, the Iowa senator called his poorly-spelled, BIZZarely cAPITalized tweets, “very Senatorial.”

“We’ve had a dialogue with this president since January the 20th on a program to get a bill to the floor … for July and we’re still on that timetable, and (for) the president to say that we ought to deliver it made it look like Congress wasn’t working — the very weekend that we were working Saturday and Sunday in Washington to keep on schedule while he was sightseeing,” Grassley said.

This is becoming a Norm MacDonald-style tautology: Iowans like Twitter.

CNN Fails

by Team Politics
Monday, June 15th, 2009

Gawker sums up CNN’s hamfisted treatment of the Iranian election debacle best:

In what could be viewed as a watershed moment for social networking and the internet in general, here you have an oppressive regime with little tolerance for dissent doing everything in its power to stymie an uprising and failing miserably because of the ability of individuals to bypass the state-controlled media outlets and communicate with each another directly. To think that the very social networking tools conceived as intangible ideas by young Americans just a few short years ago in dorm rooms and basements and garages have now come to fruition as something tangible with the power to influence the course of events halfway across the world—Well, it’s kind of breathtaking.

Meanwhile, Howard Kurtz had Rick Sanchez and sportswriter Gregg Doyel on Reliable Sources for an utterly useless but incredibly ironic debate over Twitter’s relevance. To his credit Sanchez, a mildly obsessive Twitterer, sort of gets it, mentioning that he interviewed someone in Tehran on his show that he’d met on Twitter, but no one on the show seemed to grasp the fact that the Twitter was in midst of handing CNN its proverbial ass as a news source before, during and after the airing of Reliable Sources.

The video:

Incidentally, worth checking out #cnnfail and #iranelection.

Iowans like Twitter, apparently

by Team Politics
Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

We’ve established that Iowa Senator Chuck “Splendor in the” Grassley likes Twitter (he’s going to get his own tag on this blog soon, the way things are going). Political orgs in his home state have caught on:

SEIU’s Change that Works Iowa campaign has stumbled upon a cute, creative, and timely way to deliver their message for health care reform directly to that state’s senior senator. Now, we know Chuck I’m no NAILGrassley is among national politics’ most active and passionate Twitterers. And so the home-state arm of the labor giant hit pinged the Senate Finance Committee’s ranking Republican with “24 Hours of Health Care” — a full day’s worth of hourly tweets telling the poignant personal stories of Iowans in health care crises.

The format of each tweet-story: a terse recap of the Iowan’s circumstances sent from @CTWIowaSEIU, containing a short link to a fuller version of their personal stories, as posted on the SEIU website. For example:

Robin Van Camp: Pvt insurance wouldn’t cover daughter’s hearing aids, had to dip into 401-K. @ChuckGrassley

You’ll see in the post that Grassley’s peeps give kudos to CTW. Iowans love Twitter.

Perlmutter first Congressperson to tweet about Holocaust Museum shooting

by Team Politics
Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

From’s excellent Twitter Room, we learn that Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO), is the first lawmaker to tweet a response to today’s Holocaust Museum shooting.

Perlmutter tweeted:

My thoughts are with the families of those killed/injured at the Holocaust Museum today in Washington.

Interesting stuff. We’ll see how the most prolific twitterers on the Hill will respond.


by Team Politics
Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

When people say awkward things on Twitter, it’s usually because they’re drunk. John McCain is just awkward in general:


via techPresident.

The return of the Grassley

by Team Politics
Monday, June 8th, 2009

Via The Hill’s Twitter Room, we see the Twitter-stylins of the Grass-dog, Chuck Grassley:

Pres Obama you got nerve while u sightseeing in Paris to tell us”time to deliver” on health care. We still on skedul/even workinWKEND.

Pres Obama while u sightseeing in Paris u said ‘time to delivr on healthcare’ When you are a “hammer” u think evrything is NAIL I’m no NAIL

We’ve been on the Grassley bandwagon from the beginning.

“Bro’s a no-no for CoCo?”

by Team Politics
Thursday, June 4th, 2009

I know that we’re in danger of only posting about Twitter, but you know, it’s popular. Watch until the end, that’s when the real payoff hits.

Friendster, ink this!

by Team Politics
Monday, June 1st, 2009

Over at the Ignite Social Media blog, a rundown of social media tattoos. I’m not an ink guy, but I think I would rather have a tattoo of a broken heart with “Ruth” written in an ornate type across the top.

Starbucks is definitely in the conversation

by Team Politics
Friday, May 22nd, 2009

Simon Owens has a post over at Bloggasm (subscribe now! now!) about another huge brand stumbling through social media. Basically, Starbucks put up posters on public transit in major cities and challenged folks to be the first to tweet a picture of them. A liberal filmmaker, who was debuting an anti-Starbucks video that day, seized on the opportunity to insert an opposing viewpoint into the conversation:

On a blog post published at the anti-Starbucks website Brave New Films created, people were encouraged to take pictures of themselves in front of Starbucks stores holding signs targeted at the company’s “anti-labor practices.” These users are then told to upload these photos onto Twitpic and tweet them out to their followers using the hashtags #top3percent and #starbucks. According to the post, these are the official hashtags that were designated by Starbucks itself for those who wanted to enter its contest. Within hours, several people had followed these guidelines and there were dozens of Twitpics in front of stores across the country.

If brands want to participate in social media, they have to be willing to cede control. Used to being the captains of their own messaging fate, they now have to get used to being passengers.

In lighter news, Owens also has a post about trad journalism’s obsession with “sexting“. I learned that “1174″=”Nude club”.

Another long story about a short service

by Team Politics
Friday, May 8th, 2009

A fun little puff-piece in about Political Pursuit, a trivia contest between broadcast media types, print media types, and lawmakers, descends into a puff-piece about Claire McCaskill and her avid tweeting:

Cheering on the “Members Only” team were Sens. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.).

McCaskill, one of the most prolific lawmakers on the social networking site Twitter, Tweeted several times during the event and even posted a photo of the contestants.

The rest of the article is about the Senator from MO and her Twitter habits.

Twitter and The Right

by Team Politics
Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

Anyone who’s checked out the #tcot hashtag on Twitter knows that the microblogging platform has become a nerve center for conservatives online. Over at techPresident, noted conservative @MichaelTurk outlines the political/advocacy value of the tool for conservatives. The real nugget, and a real reason for the left to be nervous:

I specifically remember more than a few people, myself included, who watched the rise of the online left with initial derision. As late as 2004 and 2005, I heard things like, “The Democrats and their blogs. How’s that working out for them? All that effort and how many wins has it resulted in?”

The Hill’s “Twitter Room” is small

by Team Politics
Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

Not in the intellectual sense, certainly (unless you’re one of those Twitter-doubters). I mean in a physical sense. Their branding for the site is an iPhone.

I’m still a fan of unsmartphonez, so may sound like a rube for asking this, but I wonder what percentage of tweets come from smartphones, vs dumb SMS, the browser, tools on the desktop, and, I dunno, smoke signals.

Twitter is NOT a Strategy

by Team Politics
Friday, March 27th, 2009

An excellent post over at techPresident, about using Twitter as a communication tool:

The Twitter fixation currently sweeping segments the news media and the political world (particularly on the Republican side) reminds me of those innocent days of the early web. Not to put Twitter down, because it definitely has valuable uses, but it’s just a tool — and if you don’t know WHY you’re using it, you’re probably not going to get much out of it.

“If you’re following more than 500 people, you’re not really following anyone.”

by Team Politics
Thursday, March 26th, 2009

Congrats to Simon Owens, who was named DC’s second-best Twitterer! He also writes a very good blog!

Maybe now I buy it

by Team Politics
Monday, March 9th, 2009

The greybeards have been opining for some now (minutes? months?) Twitter has “jumped the shark”. The shrillest death-knell was sounded by Mark McKinnon over at the disturbingly anti-tech The Daily Beast.

I get it, Twitter is a service that’s suffering from overexposure. So it’s simultaneously cool (because everyone uses it) and not cool (because everyone uses it). But I hardly think it’s irrelevant–it’s one of the great tools for connecting people who don’t know each other. Also, who doesn’t want to hear what I’m having for breakfast?

I will say that Twitter loses cool points for being noticed by that lamest of media players, the political cartoonist.