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October 8, 2012
Twitter as the 'New Press Release'
 
Times they are a-changin' indeed. We don't know how many newspeople are turning to Twitter for story leads, but BuzzFeed Politics sees a "Twitter deluge as the new press release." And it offers an example in point — a host of politicos tweeting together on behalf of the 'Dream Act' that would offer undocumented young people a path to citizenship. And that's a worthy subject for publicity, indeed.

Again, we don't know how many reporters picked up on the tweeted lead, dubbed a "Twitter blast." But is scanning Twitter any different, in time and anxiety expended, from checking the morning papers and mail and dialing around to key sources? Probably not, especially if you're part of "a media and political class that lives on Twitter." And especially if your beat is national rather than local. In any event, BuzzFeed's post includes the 15 rapid-fire Tweets on the Dream Act from the likes of Michael Bloomberg and Nancy Pelosi. Reporters who may have been checking in at the time could hardly have missed them.

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Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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