Twitter as a political tool

The announcement of Twitter’s anticipated IPO has the business and social media worlds buzzing. Agence France-Presse used the announcement to take an in-depth look at the impact the microblogging site has had in politics. The news agency interviewed me Friday on how politicians should use Twitter in their campaigns and when governing.

The following is an excerpt from the story “Twitter emerges as indispensable political tool” by AFP:

Politicians “really don’t have a choice, they have to engage on Twitter,” said Marcus Messner, a professor at the School of Mass Communications at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Staying off Twitter means staying out of some of the most engaging political discourse with supporters, campaign strategists, other politicians and journalists.

Purely posting press releases will likely get you nowhere, Messner stressed.

“It’s important for politicians… to show a little bit of their personality.”

That is why Senator Chuck Grassley tweeting a photo of the “biggest pig” at the Iowa State Fair last month was the right move. “It shows a human side,” Messner said.

Please also read the complete story by AFP.


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