Montana Republicans discover Twitter

My wife, who has been following news about this year’s legislative session with gusto, pointed out the above-pictured Facebook posting to me this afternoon:

Republicans take note! This article illustrates something many of us were unprepared for: the press use Twitter as a guide to what they should write about the legislature. We need to be in this fight, because the results of it play out on TV screens around the state.

We’re at the legislature’s midpoint, and the Republican Party is just now getting hip to the fact that many journalists around the state — including most who cover the legislature — are on Twitter. That seems to me almost criminally out of touch with modern times.

Perhaps it’s a side-effect of living in a rural state where the Web has been slower to have an effect on everyday life than it has been in more urban areas. Because of that, perhaps, the GOP assumed that few of their constituents would be using Twitter, and they therefore didn’t pay attention to it. After all, many Republican representatives come from more rural areas, where the Web has had less impact.

That ignorance of Twitter is a thing of the past though, as the #mtleg hashtag has seen an influx of Republican-focused contributors in the past two weeks — which corresponds nicely to the time since Cody Bloomsburg’s article came out about this session’s fascination with Twitter.

All that said, I think it’s a bit strong for the GOP Facebook page to say that journalists around the state are using Twitter as a “guide” as to what they should write about the legislature. Certainly, Twitter is a source of tips and information, but if any journalists out there are simply writing about whatever is getting tweeted, then those are lazy journalists.

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