23 April 2009

Twitter 1MM: Ashton vs. CNN

In last weeks news, in case you missed it...

The race was on to 1,000,000 followers on Twitter...Ashton, vs. CNN, and Ashton won.

Step into my time machine and see the original challenge, Larry King trash talking Ashton, Ashton talking Twitter and journalism with Larry King (and check out Larry's twitter feed), as Ashton's followers near 1,000,000 (my favorite quote for so many reasons: "We are the media"), and the winning moment and celebration.

It was everywhere. But what does that mean? Twitter may allow us to "be the media" but no one could possibly believe that some average guy (with the exception of Joe the Plumber, who is no longer "average" because he was singled out for his "averageness") could even get close to a million followers. Yes, he did take on a huge network and win. That is impressive. I'd love to see the demographics of the followers for both Ashton and CNN.

But was this whole thing anything more than self-marketing, like Simon Dumenco, The Media Guy columnsit for Advertising Age seems to believe? He wrote:

Using a new-media tool, Kutcher is leveraging his fame to make himself more famous by declaring his intention to become, well, even more famous -- this time in the statusphere. That's gotta be good for something, right? That basic self-marketing function works too, of course, for other public figures (politicians, authors, etc.) who have thousands of "followers" -- or "friends" on Facebook. They get to build personal-brand mind share, and sometimes actually push product. Yay. Good for them.

At least all of this craziness benefits a good cause: fighting malaria in Africa.

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