Twitter is looking to train journalists to cover the 2012 Presidential elections in 140-characters or less.
Twitter is becoming increasingly important to politicians and the journalists who cover their speeches, platforms and debates. Journalists use it to source and promote their stories, and often facts break on Twitter before they are reported on major news outlets like CNN.
And Twitter isn’t ignorant of its political power.
The company has just launched a new official Twitter account, @TwitterForNews, to direct journalists to resources for using Twitter to cover the news. As its bio describes it, the account will be “spotlighting best practices and innovative uses of Twitter by journalists and newsrooms.”
Its first tweet asked journalists and other news-y types to recommend their favorite political reporters covering the 2012 election:
This is a new source of info about using Twitter for news & showing off who does it best. Let’s start w/ election: fave political reporters?
— Twitter for News (@TwitterForNews) February 2, 2012
It then retweeted a handful of diverse responses from its followers.
The account has been actively engaging its audience with @replies, offering links to resources to visualize Twitter election data, tweeting about lists of newsmakers and journalists, and highlighting innovative uses of Twitter for covering political news.
It is another resource for journalists and newsmakers to use to ensure that they are reporting on Twitter data correctly, and displaying the right kinds of tweets in their news feeds. Twitter’s more active role in encouraging this kind of coverage shows that it really does want to move beyond being a “microblog” and towards becoming a network of information.