Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Twittering Candidates

It sounds silly, could be accused of further trivialising political discourse, but twittering is taking off among US presidential hopefuls. Twitter invites users to tell their online friends "What are you doing?" in 140 characters or less: so you can tell everyone you are updating your blog, going to the pub, or more importantly share links using tiny url. Basically it is akin to one to many text messaging and status updates can be sent from a PC, mobile phone or one of the various other devices that connect us to the world.

John Edwards' staffer Colleen Murray argues, however, that it is a key medium for engagement, she is quoted at Poststar.com as stating "Our campaign is about empowering people, and the cutting-edge technology available today gives people across the country the opportunity to interact with us and become part of our campaign". So can the sharing of trivial ephemera offer a sense of being part of a campaign? Well perhaps! It will only inform subscribers of the information, to subscribe they must be fairly interested anyway, but the information could draw those subscribers closer. Equally it can also help inform journalists of key information as it happens. If any minor evidence emerges of there being a twitter-effect you can bet that David Cameron will soon be twittering away, probably followed by a range of hopeful candidates in marginal seats.

1 comment:

franscud said...

Hi,

I've just given you a "Thinking Bloggers Award" for being a blog that makes me think. It's a "meme" to promote other blogs. Details are in my post:

http://in-the-stream.blogspot.com/2007/06/thoughtfully-memed-again-i-think.html

Keep up the great work.