Episode 51: The Legal Perils of Twitter, Modern Media and Election Year 2012


A new lawsuit seeks to place a monetary value on each single twitter follower

We’re back in San Francisco, Eva from London and Charley from San Diego, ready and raring to get 2012 off and underway with plenty of opinion, a little humor (American or dry English — take your pick) and guests galore.

This week, starting the new year the right way we have a show covering politics, social media, journalism and business. We were also delighted to be joined by Brian Ries, contributor to the Daily Beast and News Week, head of News Week’s social media platforms and regular tweeter.

The first topic we direct our attention towards is “From Iowa to New Hampshire.” We update you on the first electoral stand-off in election year 2012 — it can only be the Republican primary race. Finally, after all the build-up, the Mormon question, Cain’s affairs, Perry’s “Ooops”, Bachman’s struggle with her staff and Paul’s racist newsletters, something has happened and some Americans have voted.

But, as the results from Iowa were announced, and projections for next-stop New Hampshire came trickling in, we were left wondering about the differences between the two states: their electoral systems and the electorate itself. Tune in to understand a little more about caucuses, primaries and why we think Santorum might struggle in New Hampshire.

The second issue of the day, and indeed the issue of the moment, is the power of social media. Specifically, we talk about how to quantify the importance of each and every twitter follower, bringing up to a recent legal dispute over whether bosses or individuals own twitter feeds “tweeted” from businesses.

For some background on this story and to answer a few questions about what it’s like to work in modern media, we turn to journalist Brian Ries. The conversation takes us from how he, as a journalist, personally uses twitter, to the confluence of our real and online lives, the boundaries between personal and professional life, and the issue of mobile security.

As ever, have a listen, retweet (!) if you like what you hear, and we’ll speak to you next time from the marvel that is CES, Las Vegas.

Posted in: Election, Podcast, Social Media