Monday, October 08, 2012

Too many tweets... do not a news item make

Which is the brave move made by David Cameron. From stating that 'too many tweets make a twat', three years later Cameron has joined Twitter and been given quite the welcome. Of course it was unsolicited but it was a weekend, it was a fun story at the beginning of the Conservative Party Conference and it seemed someone thought it a good idea to submit question via Twitter. The #askdave went berserk, trending in hours. If anyone out there wants to find some witty critiques of Cameron, his cabinet, his government, his policies they are there. He made no attempt to crowdsource but the crowd appeared anyway. 

What is interesting is that there are no news items to be found in the mainstream UK media for #askdave, only the New York Times makes a wry comment. So despite the number of responses (though many are from John Prescott), the fact that it seems infamous in politico circles, it is simply a phenomenon within a bubble that encloses the politically-interested Twitter community. So, how democratizing is Twitter, does it shape the agenda; perhaps only when people say something that interests journalists, that shapes an existing story, but it is not a way to capture the attention of journalists with a story they do not want to report. A surprise in this case!

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