Message Received? Advertisers (and Air Force) Turn to Twitter

Today in Twitter news:

The New York Times Bits blog reports on one marketing company’s introduction of “‘Sponsored Tweets,’ which pays users for every commercial ad or paid message that is blasted to their Twitter followers” and has “received mixed reviews in Twitter discussions.”

And, per the AP, “according to Air Force One documents released through the Freedom of Information Act,” the Air Force “tracked… Twitter….YouTube and various blogs to assess the huge public backlash” to that unannounced Air Force One flyover/photo-op over lower Manhattan in April.


[An Air Force] unit called the Combat Information Cell at Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida monitored the public fallout [on Twitter, etc.] from the April 27 flight and offered recommendations for dealing with the fast-breaking story.

Formed two years ago, the cell is made up of as many as nine people who analyze piles of data culled from the Internet and other sources to determine whether the Air Force’s message is being heard.

In the case of the flyover, writes the AP, while “attempts at damage control failed” (or, “No positive spin is possible,” as one FOIA’d PowerPoint chart reads), “the episode opens a window into the tactics for operating in a boundless digital news cycle.”

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Liz Cox Barrett is a writer at CJR.