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Do you know who's following you on twitter? Lessons in tweeting from the 2009 Boston Mayoral Candidates Race

Boston Herald reported yesterday that in the contested Boston Mayoral Candidates Race,

Mayoral hopeful Michael Flaherty took a leap into the high-tech world of Twitter and inadvertantly landed deep in cyberspace’s seedy underworld of hookers and sex-seeking swingers.

Among the Twitter “friends” Flaherty was following yesterday were “BostonEscorts,” “BostonSexClub” and several flesh-peddlers looking for “single” and “cute” guys.

Flaherty's campaign was taking flack for a lack of Twitter activity. Another article back in April 2009 highlights the men behind the tweets highlighting Sam Yoon's authenticity on Twitter and asking "Do you value authenticity or effectiveness on Twitter?"

To that I would say I value authenticity from my future representatives and if candidates are going to opt into Twitter to obtain my vote, I want to feel like an insider! If a candidate isn't going to be mindful of 140 characters how can I expect a politician to consider a one-page letter or a 5-minute phone call?

Everyone is on twitter these days! Twitter is one of many new and cheap online outreaching strategies that allow people get succinct up-to-the-second information through 140 characters msgs or Tweets. It was found in Feb 2009 that Twitter users are more mobile in news consumption meaning aside from sending out status updates and finding out what your favorite celeb has eaten fro breakfast they also use Twitter to read the news (From PEW).

Twitterers are less likely to read a printed copy of a newspaper, but more likely to read a newspaper online, and more likely to read a news story on a cell phone or on a smart phone.

The benefits to Twitter in its limited 140 character nature is the ability to sift for information quickly. Celebrities, Candidates, Organizers, and everyday Twitterers are able to quickly respond and interact with followers and mentions. Adam Pieniazek says it best, "Twitter is for Communication, not for Broadcasting"

It's actually an immensely simple idea that got out of the way of people and allowed them to communicate quickly, easily, and freely.

For tips on how to Tweet: http://business.twitter.com/twitter101

For all social media tips to organizing: http://www.neworganizing.com/resources


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