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Twitter Tales

NBCLA Hosts Social Media Party

Last night at NBC Southern California headquarters in Burbank, several dozen invited bloggers gathered for an evening of food, drink and conference room presentations about the station’s Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram efforts tied to the London Summer Olympics.

Website editorial director Sara Catania, managing editor Jonathan Lloyd, social media lead Olsen Ebright and social media/tech on-air reporter Mekahlo Medina (pictured, above) took turns explaining how the “first social media Olympics” have been leveraged, cross-promoted and harnessed. One of the shiniest beacons of this systematic, station-wide effort is the fact that the follower count @NBCLA has zoomed in the past few weeks from around 27,000 just past the 40,000 mark.

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Fake @NIKKlFINKE Fools David Carr

The funniest thing in Sara Morrison’s Columbia Journalism Review interview with the LA prankster responsible for the Twitter parody account @NIKKlFINKE is the revelation that a New York Times reporter was and – to a certain extent, still is – caught in the crossfire.

The anonymous, faux Finke tells Morrison he has been surprised by the caliber of some of the people who have been fooled by his efforts. As an example, he cites the fact that he was straight-retweeted by NYT media reporter David Carr not long after July 21 launch:

The real Finke, when asked for comment, responded by email and then phone. Though most of the 25-minute conversation was off the record at her request, she did permit this: “David Carr, because of his sloppiness, could have damaged my credibility during an especially sensitive time of Hollywood reporting,” she says of his inadvertent retweet of fake Nikki Finke. “He owes me an apology.”

Carr responds: “I’d like to think of myself as a careful retweeter. It was a momentary lapse.”

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The Power of Vin: A.J. Ellis Trends in the U.S.

Vin Scully is getting quite the education on Twitter this week.

After reading Shane Victorino‘s tweet on Tuesday, the 84-year-old broadcaster wanted to get Los Angeles Dodger catcher A.J. Ellis trending on Twitter.

In a matter of minutes, Ellis was trending in the U.S., much to the delight on Scully.

By the way, Ellis hit two home runs on Friday as the Dodgers beat the Chicago Cubs 6-1.

As Expected, Vin Scully Hasn’t Heard of Twitter

Welcome to 2012, Vin Scully.

The 84-year-old voice of the Los Angeles Dodgers read a tweet sent out by newly acquired outfielder Shane Victorino during Tuesday’s broadcast. Based on his awkward delivery, this was likely Scully’s introduction to the wonderful world of Twitter.

This clip is all the proof I need to know that @VinScully is an impostor.

Guy Adams Mess Was Actually a #TwitterFail

In a second essay about his July 29 suspension from Twitter, The Independent LA correspondent Guy Adams hints that things could have been resolved so much more easily:

I was not contacted by NBC or Twitter before my account was suspended. If they had dropped me a line, I might – might! – have quietly deleted the offending tweet. Instead, they wandered into a PR controversy which has resulted in hundreds of thousands more people being made aware of its existence.

It is now also clear that in this ideal scenario, it would have been Twitter contacting the journalist, not NBC. Because as it turns out, it was the little bird that brought the Gary Zenkel email tweet to the attention of The Peacock, not the other way around. Per a report this morning in The Daily Telegraph:

In an email to The Daily Telegraph, Christopher McCloskey, NBC Sports vice-president of communications, said Twitter had actually contacted the network’s social media department to alert them to Mr Adams’ tweets.

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UK Journo Guy Adams Questions His Suspension from Twitter

As another day of competition draws to a close in London, a huge related media story is breaking here on the west coast. At press time, The Huffington Post, Mediate and Mashable are among the latest outlets reporting the suspension from Twitter yesterday of Guy Adams, LA based correspondent for UK’s The Independent.

After tweeting out the corporate email address of an NBC executive on Friday as part of a series of rants about the network’s decision to tape-delay the opening ceremony, Adams was suspended from the service on Sunday for violation of terms of service. But in a piece posted today, Adams questions the logic of this decision, sharing the latest email he sent to Twitter’s European PR head Rachel Bremer:

“I’m of course happy to abide by Twitter’s rules, now and forever,” the email reads. “But I don’t see how I broke them in this case: I didn’t publish a private email address. Just a corporate one, which is widely available to anyone with access to Google, and is identical [in form] to one that all of the tens of thousands of NBC Universal employees share. It’s no more “private” than the address I’m emailing you from right now.”

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Fred Willard Sure Is a Funny (Alleged) Dirty Old Man

Fred Willard made his first public statement via Twitter today since getting busted by LAPD for allegedly fondling his goods publicly during a porno triple-showcase at the Tiki Theater in LA. Now that Willard is supposedly off-the-hook legally for whatever he was up to in that theater, he can afford to joke around about the incident. And good thing, too. Because he’s damn funny.

Celeb Boutique Didn’t Get the Memo About Shooting

Well, this is awkward.

Shopping website Celeb Boutique somehow missed the tweets, text alerts and breaking news headlines on Friday morning regarding the shooting in Aurora, Colorado and decided to troll for customers on Twitter.

(And of course Kim Kardashian was the celeb name they dropped. Of course.)

Following instant outrage from their Twitter followers, they tweeted the following apology:

We are incredibly sorry for our tweet about Aurora – Our PR is NOT US based and had not checked the reason for the trend, at that time our social media was totally UNAWARE of the situation and simply thought it was another trending topic – we have removed the very insensitive tweet and will of course take more care in future to look into what we say in our tweets. Again we do apologise for any offense caused this was not intentional & will not occur again. Our most sincere apologies for both the tweet and situation.

Damn you, outsourcing.

Nikki Finke Coverage of TDKR Tragedy Sparks New Levels of Twitter Outrage*

Nikki Finke has never been interested in winning a popularity contest. Be that as it may, fellow journalists and many others are absolutely livid at her Deadline.com coverage of the Aurora, CO tragedy.

In an early morning update to her rolling post about TDKR box office returns, Finke wrote: “It is a very real possibility this terrifying tragedy may affect The Dark Knight Rises opening box office today and this weekend.” She  may not have immediately realized at around 3 a.m. PT how offensively this would read, but she and-or her nighttime editor should have – upon review – understood the inherent crassness of such a comment and deleted. [Editor's note: As we were writing this item, that portion of the TDKR box office update appears to have been removed.]

Then there’s Finke’s second item this morning about being tipped and alerting Warner Bros. to the suddenly disastrous pairing with TDKR of a trailer for the upcoming Sean Penn period drama Gangster Squad. At the very end of the trailer, the bad guys shoot up a movie theater.

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The Glendale Bear IS a National Celebrity

News of the Glendale Bear’s most recent capture made headlines all over the country this weekend. His popular Twitter feed was given prominent mention too, courtesy of the LA Times.

The bear, who has a penchant for meatballs, fruit trees and swimming pools, captured the hearts of some locals as he made a habit of foraging for food in the foothill communities in recent months. His popularity only increased when Glendale resident Sarah Aujero, 29, created the Twitter handle @TheGlendaleBear so that residents would not see the bear as a threat.

“After all these tranquilizer shots, they may need to drop me off at Celebrity Rehab…” Aujero tweeted Sunday after the bear was caught.

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